Desperate plea for 400,000 pounds to save Launch 102 - the last surviving Dunkirk boat

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She survived Hitler's Luftwaffe, rescued hundreds of Allied servicemen stranded on the beaches of Dunkirk and played a vital role during the D-Day landings.

But despite her heroic service throughout the Second World War, the boat known only as High Speed Launch 102 may be scrapped.

The warning comes only 12 years after she was restored to her former glory and then relaunched by the late Queen Mother.

Her owner, Phil Clabburn, says he can no longer afford her upkeep and, unless a buyer can be found to pay the £385,000 asking price, he fears he will have to break her up.

He had been hoping for a lottery grant but has been told he is not eligible because HSL102 is privately-owned.

'I just can't afford to keep her any more,' he said. 'She's a vessel of huge historic importance, recognised alongside HMS Victory, the Mary Rose and the Cutty Sark, but I'm not getting any help finding her a home.

'If no one comes forward in the next year I will have to break her up, which is a huge shame.'

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