Wyn Davies uncovered some real personal Hartlepool family ties when he researched a new book on HMS Trincomalee.
He paid a visit to the town from his home on the edge of the New Forest – and found out that the very hotel he was staying in was the same spot where his nautical ancestors once loaded up collier ships.
Now Wyn himself has real reason to celebrate the town after writing and researching a new book called HMS Trincomalee 1817, Frigate.
The publication from Pen and Sword Books costs £14.99 and tells how HMS Trincomalee belonged to a class of 38-gun Fifth Rates, which can claim to have been the Royal Navy’s standard frigate type for the whole of the Napoleonic Wars.
She was built in India of teak and can justly claim to be the last of Nelson’s frigates.
It takes the reader on an illustrated tour of the ship, from bow to stern and deck by deck.
My links with Hartlepool go back a long time. I have done quite a bit of research on the ship although I have known about it for quite a whileWyn Davies, author
The book is part of the Seaforth Historic Ship Series, which also includes the SS Great Britain and HMS Warrior.
But for Wyn, it also marked a chance to trace his roots back to the North East.
They stretch back to the Bombardment of Hartlepool, when his grandparents lived through the ordeal of the German shelling of the town.
The family decided to relocate and Wyn’s mum Norah White was a three-year-old, who was moved to pastures new.
But another of his ancestors, John White, continued to have links with Hartlepool as he was a collier on trade lines including Hartlepool.
And when Wyn stayed at Hartlepool Marina, on a visit to the town for research purposes, he stayed in the area which used to be dockland that his father used.
He added: “My links with Hartlepool go back a long way.
“I have done quite a bit of research on the ship, although I have known about it for quite a while.”
The publishers behind the book say HMS Trincomalee is a shining example of the dedication and enthusiasm of those responsible for maintaining Britain’s maritime heritage. The book includes a historical introduction about the ship and her significance, with photographs throughout.