St Abbs – Black Rocks and Glanmire

St Abbs on a North Easterly wind! (June 2016)

By Nic Faulks

Well, it seems that everyone but Simon and I had read the weather forecast. We advertised the trip on Whatsapp, email, Facebook and verbally, but no one else wanted to come….. I now know why!

It was billed as the Glanmire trip, but that was to be the deeper and second dive of the day. The first dive was Black Rocks – again… but the sea was big, choppy, breezy and frankly dark and uninviting. So much so, I did something I never do, I left my camera all warm and safe in its box in the wheel house of the boat.

The dive was dark, but the visibility was okay. Lots of dead man’s fingers, some nudibranchs, but a lot of brittle stars. Not the best dive in the world… back on board, the sea seemed to have calmed a little bit, or had I just got used to it?

The second dive was the Glanmire. As we descended the shot, I thought that while dark, if the swell abated at depth, the dive may be quite good. We got to the bottom, no swell! Si then led the way to the stern of the wreck so I could photograph the propeller, which stands proud and is quite noticeable.

Glanmire prop

This is best done by following the propeller shaft if the shot lies mid ships next to the large boilers.

Glanmire boiler

The whole wreck is covered with life. Lobsters, crabs, squatties and hermits are all here, as well as the soft corals and squidgy anemones.


As you carry on fin on towards the bow of the wreck, you pass the large boilers which stand proud above the seabed, a good place to hang out if you are nearing your decompression time. Further forward, lots of nets seemed to cover the wreckage.


Some have been in situ so long that they have life growing on them such as feather hydroids.

As we were both on rebreathers, we had a lovely long dive, racking up minimal deco time, which was nice. Last time I dived this wreck I was on open circuit and felt so limited for bottom time. We headed back to the shot and surfaced to a somewhat choppy grey day, I had forgotten what it would be like as the depths were so calm and quiet. Si Fish was a great guide, taking me around the whole wreck.


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