But what of Grahame Knott and his fellow divers in the middle of all of this? Well, for one, Knott and the Deeper Dorset outfit have certainly had some successes over the years. Back in the 1990s, for instance, the team discovered the wreck of a sailing ship called the Aracan – a trader that had made trips to India and China. She sank in about 180 feet of water after colliding with another ship in the English Channel in 1874.
Then there was the Miniota – a cargo ship that had been sunk by a German submarine in 1917. Knott and his comrades found that sunken vessel as well, you see. Yes, although professional salvage divers had arrived at the site first – attracted, no doubt, by the silver bullion on board – those salvagers didn’t report their find. So, Knott was the first to reveal the Miniota’s location.
But it wasn’t a vessel from Britain’s rich maritime history, nor indeed a ship or plane from the world wars, that Knott devoted ten years of his life trying to find. Rather, it was a 37-ton Lockheed C-130 Hercules – a transport plane that had been lost in the English Channel on May 23, 1969.