Shipwrecks of famous shipping lines

Nepaul (2)

1876-1890, Plymouth

Nepaul (2)


Nepaul (2) was built by Alexander Stephan and Sons, Glasgow, and originally laid down as Theodor Korner for the short-lived German Transatlantic Steam Navigation Line. The unfinished vessel was purchased on the stocks by P&O, renamed Nepaul (2) and launched on 30 March 1876. Constructed of iron with a single screw powered by compound inverted direct-acting steam engines. Accommodation for 117 first-class and 38 second-class passengers.

During an eventfull career the Nepaul (2) befell numerous collision and grounding incidents and earned a reputation for being an 'unfortunate ship'. The vessel's end came just five days after P&O had suffered the loss of the Hong Kong in the Red Sea on 5 December 1890. On 10 December 1890 the Nepaul (2) was inbound from Calcutta when it was wrecked on Shagstone Rock off Plymouth at 19:20 having missed the pilot in thick fog. There were no casualties, and the passengers and specie were taken off the following morning, but most of the cargo was ruined.


Dimensions114.4 x 12.2 m (375.2 x 40.1 ft)
Speed14 knots


The wreck has become very broken-up and what little remains has been scattered over the reef to the east of the Shagstone and to the north of Renney Rocks. Kelp grows in abundance on the rocks and boulders so any attempt to locate the wreck in the summer is fruitless and it is best dived during winter months. An observant diver can hope to find sections of the hull, ribs, derricks, winches and possibly even the donkey boiler. Part of the bow is believed to lie on the southern side of the Shagstone reef. A good wreck site to rummage for smaller, everyday artefacts but divers need to be aware that there is a lot of ordnance scattered over the seabed in this area.


Dive Data
Position50.317222, -4.124444
Depth13m (43ft)

Dive Operators
More Information


Devon Shipwrecks DVD (Full Version) by Peter Mitchell
Freedive on the wreck