Sex, lies and Dunkirk boat "LLANTHONY"
The private yacht "LLANTHONY" is a worderful old lady of the sea with a few great stories to tell. She has languished in Castlepark, Kinsale for two years now. The current owner, John Beadnall, over on a brief visit from Ardlamont House, Argyll in Scotland, allowed me take these photos. He told some of her amazing history. She took part in the Dunkirk evacuation, (her steel hull still contains shrapnel from that escapade) and 5 crew were killed while rescuing almost 300 soldiers from the beaches.
As a post-war luxury yacht, Wallace Simpson & King Edward slept aboard her. While owned by Lord Astor, Llanthony was used by John Profumo MP as a meeting place for his indelicate relationship with call-girl Christine Keeler. John Profumo lied about the relationship to a Commons committee, thus beginning the Profumo Scandal as it became in 1963. With sex, cold-war spies and treachery the unfolding story rocked the establishment and ultimately led to the fall of Macmillans' conservative party from power. Llanthony had drifted far from Dunkirk and her heroes.
Llanthony was purchased by the present owner in 1995, whilst lying in Rhodes, Greece in a very dilapidated state.
She then underwent extensive restorations, most recently, re-plated all round in 2004 and twin Caterpillar 350 engines installed at same time. She maintains her original fittings in cabins and salon. Internal refit done in Malta in 2005 restoring her original 4 guest cabins. Sleeps seven guests, bathroom and new crew-quarters to sleep up to five.
Llanthony's funnel is decorational, serving only as storage. However, a look inside will show much repair to the metalwork - testimony to her visits to Dukirk.
Boat Name: Llanthony
Boat Type: Motor Yacht
Boat Length: 77 ft 5 ins
Boat Beam: 14 ft 6 ins
Boat Draft: 5 ft 5 ins
Boat Displacement: 61 tons
Boat Engine: 2 x 350HP Caterpillar diesels
Boat Construction: Steel
Boat Builder: Camper & Nicholson
Boat Year: 1934 for Colonel Lionel Beaumont Thomas MC
Past Owners: Lionel Beaumont-Thomas, Lord Astor of Hever Castle, Baron Kroniker - military attache for Belgium during WW2, Ray Paton (1984-1995), Nicola McGrail-Beadnall.
Other: Used by Wallace Simpson & King Edward. Also base for Prufomo and "call girls" before scandal broke.
The boat has an amazing story to tell of her service during the Dunkirk evacuation. The story can be seen in a subsection of this item and includes bravery, death, survival and salvation.
Between 1985 and 1993, known as Golden Era, she cruised between Greece and Turkey as an elegant charter yacht. In 1995 she was discovered lying in Rhodes harbour in an extremely dilapidated state by her present owner Ms. Nicola Mcgrail. She was put to sail on one engine and taken to Marmaris in Turkey in 1995, where she has undergone extensive renovation and the complete rebuild of her Daimler-Benz engines. She has become a showpiece at Netsel Marina, Marmaris, now restored to her former glory and retains all her original fittings. She returned to British waters for the first time in thirty years to attend The Diamond Anniversary Reunion in June 2000.