Licensee Investigations - 2000-2011

Many licensees have examined the wreck over the years.

Over the years, many organisations and individuals have held licences to dive and survey the Iona II. Every year, the licensees are required to lodge a report with English Heritage allowing the condition of the wreck to be monitored.


MADU - 2000

Despite setbacks due to poor weather and the fuel crisis, the Malvern Archaeological Diving Unit (MADU) licensed survey was quite successful.

-Identified several new anomalies

-Located possible superstructure to the NE

-Identified possible illegal diving activity

-Concluded that since 1990, degradation of the site was minimal

-Observed that the bow section was buried and the stern quite exposed

The major discovery of this survey was that the boilers in Rule’s isometric drawing were depicted in a transposed position with the larger boilers recorded in the aft of the vessel rather than in the forward section. That this had not been picked up previously may be due the typically poor visibility on the site making navigation quite difficult.


MADU - 2001

Returning the following year, the MADU focussed on the forward section of the vessel but noted that bow of the vessel had become exposed and the aft had become buried, suggesting yearly cycles of sediment movement.

It was clear that illegal diving was still taking place on this protected wreck as some had left dive equipment behind and, whilst the MADU was on site, an unlicensed group of divers arrived who thought that the site had been deregulated.

At the conclusion of the two year’s work, MADU recommended that a dive trail be established or a licensed dive club offer tours of the site to combat illegal diving.  


Wittering Divers Ltd.-2005

Over two days in July 2005, Tony Dobinson of Wittering Divers Ltd completed a photographic survey of the Iona II for the WreckMap Britain project. While the identifying features of the boilers, engine and forward funnel section were clearly visible, there was some structural degradation and debris was noted in the area of the paddles.


Appledore Sub Aqua Club - 2010

In 2010, this local club visited the Iona II to complete a licensed photo survey. The clear visibility they experienced is not typical of the wreck.


Severnside Sub Aqua Club - 2011

A visitor licence was granted in June 2011 to eight divers from this club to carry out a photo survey. Wessex Archaeology’s 23 monitoring points (MPs) were divided between the four buddy pairs to ensure all features would be recorded. Divers noted that there was a general increase in sediment over the whole wreck while certain areas had degraded including the loss of the curved horizontal section of the sternpost and loss of the forward funnel base.