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The fishermen of England go down to the sea in ships

24 Jun
Sometimes in the fog of war regrettable incidents happen that, if they did not involve the loss of life, appear to be farcical and if not utterly ridiculous. Thus, in a dispute between Russia and Japan in October 1904, the Russian Navy fired upon British trawlers in the Dogger Bank area of the North Sea, believing them to be Japanese torpedo boats. The British trawler Crane was sunk and two fishermen from Hull lost their lives. Other boats were also attacked and another fisherman later died of his wounds. Compounding their error, the Russians then started firing on themselves; killing at least one Russian sailor and an Orthodox priest on board a Russian cruiser. The only reason more damage wasn’t done is that the Russian Navy couldn’t shoot straight.
Unsurprisingly, the British Government took a dim view of all this, especially as Britain was allied to Japan at the time. Compensation, to the tune of £66,000, did manage to calm things.

The statue was unveiled in 1906 and shows the dead fisherman George Smith. The other two dead fishermen were William  Legget and Walter Whelpton. It stands at the junction of Hessle Road and the Boulevard, in the centre of the old fishing district. 
(Unless my memory is playing tricks with me, and it might well be; this statute was another of those that sat upon a public convenience; like Queen Vic and King Billy. The conveniences have now gone and so has just about all the fishing fleet.)
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