One last Echo from Jutland

Stunning new 3D scans have emerged from the largest naval battle in history showing the final resting place of a German Flagship.

Looking like a small ridge at the bottom of the North Sea these images actually show SMS Lützow, Admiral Franz von Hipper’s Flagship, scuttled during the Battle of Jutland in 1916.

The images were captured by the Royal Navy survey ship HMS Echo which has been visiting Jutland.

In June, Echo used her state of the art sonar suite to produce an array of images from the Battle of Jutland and at the same time deployed a tidal gauge.

They act as poignant remainder of the sacrifices made on both sides during the Great War.

Commander Phillip Newell RN

But on her recent return to recover the tidal gauge the ship’s company tried one more time to find the elusive Derfflinger Class Battle-cruiser – their attempts were rewarded with these images some eight miles from Lützow’s last known position.

HMS Echo’s Commanding Officer, Commander Phillip Newell, said: “These images from Lützow will ensure the ship’s final resting place is properly recognised as a war grave.

“They act as poignant remainder of the sacrifices made on both sides during the Great War.”

SMS Lützow and her older sister Derfflinger were the largest and most powerful German Battle-cruisers at the time. 

Having joined Admiral Hipper’s I Scouting Group just two months before the Battle of Jutland; Lützow suffered significant damage in the battle and was forced to withdraw and head back to port. 

However the damage was too great and in the early hours of 1 June 1916 the Lützow was scuttled after the crew abandoned ship. 

HMS Echo’s images now confirm the location of her final resting place, some eight miles from her last reported position.

The images of the Lützow have been provided to the UK Hydrographic Office in Taunton as well as to the National Museum of the Royal Navy. 

The story of the Battle of Jutland, and that of HMS Echo’s mission to uncover the wrecks, will be told in a documentary to be aired next year, 100 years on since the great clash of the Dreadnoughts.

Cdr Newell added: “While it’s important to look to the past, HMS Echo’s mission in the North Sea also sees her looking to the future. 

“The tidal gauge, which has been in place for the past two months, has been providing invaluable data on tidal ranges in the area. 

This will add to the wealth of maritime data gathered by the Royal Navy to ensure safe navigation of the seas and protection of our nation’s interests.”