A bit of drama this week in Falmouth that hit the national news; a Russian cargo shop ran aground on Gyllyngvase Beach in ‘extreme’ and ‘horrific’ weather which had caused the boat to drag its anchor. In a rescue operation led by the Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA), three harbour tugs and the Falmouth lifeboat finally managed to tow the 16,000 tonne vessel with 18 crew on board off the beach just after 2pm as the tide was turning. The picture above was on the cornwallive website by Greg Martin.

Marc Thomas, senior coastal operations manager for the Coastguard, said: ‘.. it was right down to the wire. It was a bit of a last ditch attempt but they’ve done it. We’re really proud of everyone, they’ve responded very well and there’s been a great effort. It was hard and I was worried. If the ship had stayed overnight there’s a chance it could have broken up, no one wants that.’

Luckily it had no cargo in terms of the weight being towed and also in terms of the risk of cargo falling off the boat as it has a list of five degrees.

The vessel has been detained by the MCA and has been directed not to leave Falmouth Bay until acceptable repairs have been made. A follow-up inspection will be made before the vessel can be released. The Maritime and Coatguard Agency (MCA) said: “A Port State Inspection by MCA Surveyors confirmed a breach in one of the fuel tanks. Tank readings indicate the tank has filled with water as a consequence of the grounding, however no pollution has been reported”. Lets hope it stays that way.

Sadly though because the ship’s bow area was sitting on a rocky reef for 8 hours rocking from side to side and then being pulled by the rescue vehicles, the reef has been devastated said a local diver. That is not good news but I guess it could have been worse.

Interestingly the Kuzma Minin had so many faults at the last inspection that it was detained in the Netherlands for 71 days and only released on December 6!

Now to something more Christmassy. It turns out that Christmas trees are grown on the Lizard peninsula by James Richard at Bruggan Farm near Ruan Minor. Had we known this we would not have brought one down from surrey!

James inherited his love of Christmas trees from his father Roger, who first started growing them in the 1980s for locals. James now plants between 500 and 700 each year and these will be ready in about 5 years. A long term business! James has a small flock of Shropshire sheep which act as woolly mowers keeping the grass and weeds down which is a great idea. Very environmentally friendly. James’s trees have found fame in recent professional photo-shoots with well known companies AGA Range Cookers and Seasalt Clothing using his trees for their Christmas catalogues which is great.

Moving onto Boxing Day Tthere will be a few organised swims around the Lizard including Poldhu and Coverack but we might not be joining them! At least it is going to be mild.

Finally we would just like to wish you a very happy Christmas from the Cellars.

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