Golden Chance (1914-1959)

The Golden Chance is moored at the end of a tiny jetty in the Canache, close to the Hookey Walker and the Gentoo. She was built in Lowestoft, on the east coast of England in 1914, as a wooden drifter with a steam engine. 

She arrived in the Falkland Islands on 14th November 1949 by way of Uruguay after a voyage from the UK which saw her almost sunk.  For much of the journey she was towed by the 163-ton Canadian-built minesweeper, Protector III, which herself ended up beached in the Falklands in 1969 in Tigre Harbour, New Island.

The vessels were being sent to the Falklands as part of a Falkland Islands Government-backed sea lion hunting project on West Falkland.  The Golden Chance was in such dire straights that the ships put into Montevideo, so that steel reinforcements could be fitted to the drifter to enable her to complete the voyage to the Falklands.

Key Facts:

steam drifter icon

Wooden steam drifter

Built: Lowestoft, England, 1920
Size: 84 feet long, 19.5 feet wide. 85 gross tons, 37 net
Fate: Left to rot in the Canache, Stanley

The seal initiative failed, due to a lack of seals and was abandoned after just three seasons, so both vessels found themselves surplus to requirements in 1954.  Protector sporadically ran livestock and mutton carcases around the islands until the late 1960s but Golden Chance was effectively ‘retired’ and anchored in Stanley Harbour east of the cemetery until she was removed and taken to the Canache in 1959, where she remains to this day. 

Mark Spicer’s drone video gives a rare birds eye view of the Golden Chance.

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