An RNLI lifeboat crew has carried out what it describes as "one of its most unusual rescues".
Volunteers from the Tynemouth Station were called earlier to manoeuvre the Tres Hombres - a Brigantine-type sailing ship - into port, after the motor launch it relies on broke down.
With strong winds forecast, there was concern the engineless cargo ship would have been in a precarious situation.
It was towed into the River Tyne and moored at North Shields quayside.
Adrian Don, from Tynemouth RNLI, said: "This is one of the most unusual services our volunteer crew members have carried out and the casualty vessel is unique as the world's only engineless sailing cargo ship.
"The Tres Hombres and her crew were in no immediate danger but having no engine and with her launch broken down, they had no means of safely getting into harbour.
"With very poor weather expected her skipper had no alternative but to ask for assistance."