Type: R.N.L.I. Lifeboat
Length: 46ft 6ins
Beam: 12ft 9ins
Draft: 3ft 3ins
Displacement: 17 tons
Engine: Lister diesel model MG616
Builder: J S White, Cowes, I o W
Launched in 1925 and getting on for middle age, in lifeboat terms, when she went to Dunkirk, the Mary Scott was towed there by the paddle steamer Empress of India together with two other small boats. Between them they took 160 men to their mother ship and when it returned fully laden to Dover, they made a journey with fifty men to another transport vessel.
When her engine broke down and could not be restarted, Mary Scott was beached and abandoned at La Panne, east of Dunkirk. Sub-Lieut. Stephen Dickenson, her Commander (a former RNLI Inspector of Lifeboats), together with her crew, came home to Dover in the Louise Stephens, the Great Yarmouth and Gorleston lifeboat.
Mary Scott was later re-floated and brought back to England where, during her last twenty-eight years in the service, she saved forty-seven lives. As the Southwold lifeboat, she was launched thirty more times before the station closed in 1940. She then continued to serve in fifty-two more rescues as part of the RNLI relief fleet.
Sold out of the service in 1953, she was re-named Atenua and converted six years later by a jewellery manufacturer.
Her owner in the nineties kept her on the Medway and renamed her 'Mary Scott'.
For a number of years, she fell out of use until in 2007 she was purchased and restored by her current owners.
She participated in the 2010 and 2015 returns and featured in the Christopher Nolan film Dunkirk (2017).
Mary Scott returns to Southwold 80 years on; https://www.itv.com/news/anglia/2020-08-14/southwold-lifeboat-that-saved-hundreds-of-lives-at-dunkirk-returns-for-the-first-time-in-80-years