A run along the dramatic Berwickshire coast from Coldingham to Burnmouth, passing through the picturesque fishing village of Eyemouth. I have been here once before, to launch my sea kayak for a paddle up the coast. But what I remember most is reading about the fishing disaster of 1881. We had stopped at the first and last pub in Scotland in nearby Burnmouth for a bite to eat and framed on the wall were newspaper cuttings on the disaster. The first two weeks of October 1881 had seen a prolonged spell of bad weather but Friday 14th dawned calm and benign. The young men of Eyemouth were impatient to set sail but the older folk expressed more caution. Eventually, the fleet set off and eight or nine miles out, with lines already shot, a sudden storm caught them all by surprise. 47 out of the 48 boats that set sail from Eyemouth that morning were lost, 129 men. Another 60 men were lost from other villages on the Berwickshire coast. There couldn’t have been a family in the village which was not affected, with many families losing all their menfolk. October 14th is still remembered in Eyemouth as Black Friday,
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