A wonderful song about the whisky from the Pegu shipwreck on Formby beach has been released
Most people have heard and even seen the shipwreck on Formby beach known as the Pegu.
The Pegu was owned by the Henderson line and travelled the Liverpool Rangoon service from 1921 to 1939. She ran aground and there was 103 Passengers on board who were all taken off by the New Brighton lifeboat and transferred to the Pilot Boats. Shortly after the passengers were taken off, an attempt was made to tow her off the sandbank, but she was well aground and there she stays to this day.
Old Formby stories tell another side to the Pegu wreck..... A true story of a shipwreck on the coastline of Formby in 1939. The Pegu ran aground and its cargo was washed up onto the shore much to the delight of the family living in the lifeboat house on the beach.
The story goes that early one morning they were woken to friends saying the Pegu had run aground and the cargo was whisky and cigarettes galore! News travelled fast around Formby and more people turned up with wheelbarrows, buckets and horses to stake their claim of the Pegu whisky. Dick Scarisbrick was told by his dad to get a handcart to carry the whisky. He borrowed a cart from Formby Police Station. It took him two hours to get back to the shore with the handcart and when he did, his dad was on the shore drunk and flat on his back. He had to stick him on the handcart and take him back home! The next morning the customs men came, to see what salvage they could reclaim but only a few crates were left on the shore. If you find any more, please mark them and store them, the tides must be strong on this coastline they said!
Songwriter, Stephen Gerrard said: "This video was a combined effort between myself and Dougie Knight (the illustrator). We are both Formby residents. I decided to start writing the song after I was lucky enough to speak to Brian Brankin and one of the Norris family who lived in the boat house at the time of the shipwreck. The story sounded almost too farfetched to be true but there are still local people that can remember it and verify what happened. It must have been quite a sight to see hoards of people on the beach filling their hand carts and buckets full of whisky and cigarettes."
This brilliant video is by Stephen Gerrard and illustrated by Dougie Knight and is a true Formby Treasure!