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Originally named the Iolanthe, a luxury yacht built in 1881 in Leith, it was subsequently re-named the Amalthaea, Mione and then, requisitioned by the Admiralty during the Great War, as HM Yacht Iolaire.
At New Year 1919 the ship was bringing home servicemen. The men - all naval ratings - were coming home after the terrible experience of hardship at sea during the war. The boat foundered at Holm Point outside Stornoway Harbour with the loss of 205 souls. The bitter irony of having survived the war to meet their end only a stone's throw from home and safety cannot be adequately expressed.