The Goodwin Sands is a treacherous sand bank in the Channel a few miles off Deal, which has been the site of litterally hundreds of shipwrecks in centuries past, one of the last notable victims being the Ross Revenge, last of the pirate radio ships, in 1991.
Of course the Goodwins have their fair share of legends, starting from their origins. It is said that this sand bank was once a small island, called Lumea. Some say that it was swept away by a fearful storm in 1099, others that its last owner, an abbot in Canterbury, failed to properly mantain the sea walls resulting in the island’s destruction. Saxon sailors surely knew the area well as the name demonstrates: gode wine, good friend, probably given with apotropaic intentions.
Local legends hold that there are a number of ghost ships in the area: the first is an unnamed Spanish galleon from the Armada, which is said to have become shipwrecked during an attempted mutiny. The second one is the HMS Northumberland, a frigate lost with all hands in the Goodwin sands during the Great Storm of 1703 together with four other warships. The most recent one is the steamer Violet, shipwrecked with the loss of the entire crew in 1857. But the most famous ghost of the Goodwin Sands is bound to be the schooner Lady Luvibond, lost at sea in 1748. Local legends link it with a tragic love story but since the ship was lost at sea with the entire crew and all the passengers nobody came back to tell what really happened. More interesting is the belief that the Lady Luvibond will appear every fifty years on the 13th of February and that it will regulary require a “sacrifice” in the form of another ship lost to the Goodwins during the first two months of year.
As far as I know the last time the Lady Luvibond appeared was in 1898 and its last “victim” was a small Italian merchant in 1948, whose whole crew luckily escaped unharmed.