The Cita, Scillies Own Whisky Galore Wreck
The Cita, Scillies Own Whisky Galore Wreck

AT £3.99 a copy, you might think this slim volume over-priced, especially as some of the chapter headings are incorrect, but the 32 colour illustrations alone are worth every penny, bringing to life a dramatic event in the maritime history of the Isles of Scilly.
The container ship Cita sank there earlier this year. There is little on the sub-sea wreck because the focus of the book is the story of the cargo and its salvage. Not since the stranding of the Minnehaha in 1910 have the Scillies seen anything quite like it.
Richard Larn and David McBride have captured the excitement of the occasion, interlinking the rich maritime history of the Isles with the local instinct for salvage and a concern for the effects of pollution.
There is a summary of the manifest for 92 of the leaded containers (four pages of the manifest were unavailable when the book went to print) which gives an excellent illustration of the diversity of the cargo. The authors place the laws of wreck and salvage into practical perspective, while highlighting the problem of pollution by seemingly innocuous material such as rolls of polyester film.
This is a fine resume of what happens when a container ship comes to grief on the shores of the United Kingdom.
Clem Maginniss

The Cita, Scillies Own Whisky Galore Wreck, Shipwreck & Marine. Softback £3.99