ARRIVAL OF THE BEN LEDI
The Evening Post May 15th 1877
The ship Ben Ledi, from London, arrived at the lower anchorage between 9 and 10 o'clock last night, having been blown in by the southerly gale, which caught he southerly just outside the Heads. It will be remembered that the Ben Ledi, which left London on 28th January, encountered terrific weather in the English Channel, and lost he jibboom, four of the crew being washed overboard at the same time and drowned. She had to put back for repairs, and subsequently making a more fortunate start on the 31st of January, has brought her voyage to a conclusion as stormy as its commencement. It appears that the Ben Ledi had arrived within a few miles of the Heads, when the southerly gale burst suddenly on her, with a tremendous seaAs she was completely embayed, and it was impossible to work to windward against such a gale, while the sea was too rough for the pilot boat to come out, there were but two alternatives, either to let the ship be blown on a lee shore, or to run right in before the gale without the pilot. The captain naturally took the latter course, and steered for the entrance, burning blue lights and rockets continually. The steamers Stormbird and Tui, which were going out of port, but had to put back, owing to the severity of the gale and sea, went to the rescue, and endeavoured to pilot the ship into port, but she was scudding at such a tremendous rate that she flew past both steamers, luckily hitting the right passage, and coming safely to an anchor as above. There are not many harbours into which a ship could run safely under such circumstances, scudding before a heavy gale and sea, with rain, very thick weather, the night intensely dark, and no pilot on board.
The Stormbird went off to her to-day, but the late hour at which she returned prevents us giving a full report. Captain Boyd informs us that the passage out was uneventful - the passengers are all in good health, and there has been no deaths or accidents on board. The Ben Ledi is one of Shaw Savill & Co's vessels, and comes consigned to Messrs W & G Turnbull & Co.