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Bou Ferrer, Roman Wreck 2017

Pictures by Jo & David Spinney

Scuba Diving in Villa Joyosa, Spain.

The Bou Ferrer was named after 2 archaeologists who discovered the wreck in 2000 (the local fishermen had been bringing up artefacts for years and a local dive club used to visit the wreck on the quiet, but the wreck had never been reported).

Once the wreck was discovered the local museum worked with the University of Alicante, the Valencian government and the Guardia Civil to map the wreck and recover artefacts from the wreck.

The boat was about 40m long and about 29m wide at the centre, it was an important ship owned by the ruling family of Rome. The boat sailed from the port of Cadiz and was carrying 3000 amphorae each holding between 34 and 43 litres of valuable Fish Sauce and hundreds of Lead Ingots each weighing about 70 kilos mined in southern Spain.

No one knows why it was wrecked, and no one knows why it was off the coast at Villa Joyosa, as the route from the Spanish port of Cadiz to Rome would have been a long way south of where it was found.

The exact year it sank is not known, however the date has been narrowed down by the discovery of a coin on the wreck (the day before our visit) which is dated AD 76. The current assumption is that it belonged to the emperor Nero.

The wreck was very well preserved by the very thick layer of sand which surrounds and covers the wreck. It was amazing to see 2000 timbers and amphorae still in place and to know that we are just 2 of maybe a hundred people to see the boat in 2000 years.

Bou Ferrer Wreck
Pictures from the Villa Joyosa Museum
August 2017
Bou Ferrer Wreck
Pictures from Bou Ferrer Wreck
August 2017