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11th Mar 2022
Carlton Colville Sea Scouts tragedy photocards estimate 80 100

A unique memento of a 1914 Broads boating accident which saw a group of Carlton Colville Sea Scouts and their leaders drown is set to go under the hammer in Norfolk later this month.

The tragedy saw three Sea Scouts, their two Scout Masters and a naval instructor drown when their boat capsized on the river Waveney at Somerleyton, as they returned from a week’s camping on the Duke’s Head hills, on 1st June 1914.

There was just one survivor from the tragedy, 17 year-old Stanley Wood, who was killed just two years later during the Battle of the Somme.

Now a set of postcards relating to the incident, including views of the funeral procession, boats, and the individuals involved, is set to be auctioned at Keys Auctioneers and Valuers in Aylsham on Wednesday 23rd March.

The photos were taken by H Jenkins, a photographer based at 2 Pier Terrace, Lowestoft.  The funeral procession attracted large crowds, who joined more than 300 Scouts lining the route to St Marks Church, Carlton Colville, as the cortege passed by in six horse-drawn hearses.

Today a memorial stands in the cemetery in Carlton Colville, commemorating the three boys, aged 14 and 15, and the three adults who died, as well as sole survivor Stanley Wood, who was subsequently killed during the Battle of Fromelles (part of the Somme offensive) in July 1916.

“This is a unique collection of images which bring to life a tragedy which is still very much remembered in Carlton Colville,” said David Broom of Keys Auctioneers and Valuers.  “Photographic cards – what we would today call postcards – were a very popular way of bringing to life incidents like this, in an era before social media.

“There are 18 cards relating to the tragedy in the collection, along with 17 other postcards, mainly of Lowestoft.  This is a fascinating piece of local history.”

The postcards will go under the hammer at Keys’ Aylsham salerooms, as well as live online at bid.keysauctions.co.uk, on Wednesday 23rd March, with a pre-sale estimate of £80-£100.  Full details can be found at www.keysauctions.co.uk.