|The Loss of the Avalanche and the Forest|
The bravery of the Portland fishermen
was not forgotten and when the Rector of Portland made an Appeal in the
"Standard" newspaper for Testimonials to be presented to them, the public
readily responded. A total of £135. 2s. 8d. was contributed:
The First Boat's Crew
J P Way
The Second Boat's Crew
Wm Flann Sen
Wm Flann Jr
Shortly after the tragedy, relatives
and friends of those who were lost in the Avalanche requested that a Memorial
be erected on Portland, to which they wished to contribute. A suggestion
was made to the Rev. J. A. Beazor, the Rector of Portland, that there was
need of a church in Southwell, the small village nearest the site of the
Thus arose the Public Subscription which raised
£2,000 by donations in England and New Zealand and resulted in the
building of the new St. Andrew's Church, a beautiful Memorial known in
Portland as the Avalanche Church; the highway onto which it faced is now
named Avalanche Road.
The Memorial Church was consecrated, being dedicated
to Saint Andrew, by the Bishop of Salisbury on the 3rd July, 1879; it was
designed in the early English style by Mr. Crickmay the Diocesan surveyor.
Built of Portland stone by Messrs. Lynham and Bayliss of Portland, the
external walls are rock-faced random-squared stone with ashlar dressings
to doors, windows and buttresses, with a two-bell turret.
It is a small church with seating for approximately
one hundred people; the inside length 71 ft. and the extreme breadth 24
ft. Most of the fittings are offerings and all the nave windows except
one, are stained glass memorials. The six chancel windows, the lectern,
the pulpit, the font and the organ were also offerings, plus many other
gifts to the Church in memory of loved relatives and friends.
There is a picture of the Avalanche, an artist's
impression of the two Portland Lerrets coming into land after the rescue
and a framed copy of the Testimonial presented to William Flann.
There is also a brass tablet listing the names,
and where known, the descriptions of the passengers and crew of the Avalanche.
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