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HarrisonLine NEWSLETTER

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HARRISON LINE NEWSLETTER No. 40

EDITORIAL For a change I am not writing this Editorial at my desk in the London office or at home but from the I lth floor of the Atlantic Tower Hotel in Liverpool. It is a balmy summers' evening and stretched out before me is a flat calm Mersey River with the lights of Birkenhead beginning to twinkle beyond as dusk falls. The MANX MAID has just berthed at the Pierhead, an ACL vessel is sailing out of Seaforth and the Wallasey ferry plys crab-like to and fro, as the tide ebbs. On the news I have just heard that the F.T. Index closed at an all time high, that there have been record car sales in Britain this month and that England have won the third test against New Zealand . . . . all a far cry from the miseries of Chad and Sri Lanka and the troubles in Central America. The soggy spring that I referred to last time has long been forgotten by most of us, (farmers excepted), and the last three months have been among the hottest on record. Plenty of beer and ice cream has been consumed at many memorable sporting fixtures including the New Zealand test series and an exciting Prudential World Cup,which was surprisingly yet deservedly won by the Indians. Nawatilova and McEnroe proved unbeatable yet again at Wimbledon and there have been some exciting performances on the track and water at Ascot, Goodwood and Henley. The weather was not so kind at Helsinki for the athletes competing in the first world championships though and so far the wind has not been blowing as hard as the British team would like at Rhode Island Sound in their bid to beat the Australians, (with their new-fangled keel), with VICTORY '83, to become the challengers

for the America's Cup. Following the trauma of the general election in May, Parliament is on holiday, so all is quiet in the world of British politics - well, almost, for Messrs. Hattersley and Kinnock are battling it out for Mr. Foot's place as Labour Party Leader when he steps down in October. (Incidentally, Michael Foot once worked for Alfred Holt's in India Buildings during the 30's, in their Conference department, and was described then as "a slightly distraught figure in the "pool", wrestling, no doubt, with the latest brainwave landed on him by Leonard Cripps". Cripps was a Director of the firm and brother of Stafford Cripps who was then a prominent left-wing member of the Opposition. In addition, Richard Holt and Michael Foot's father were both Liberal M.P.'s during the Great War which probably explains why the current Opposition Leader should have embarked on a career in shipping). The opinion polls were right and Mrs. Thatcher's Government was returned with a majority of 144 seats. We now have a much younger Parliament and the Ministerial pack has been re-shuffled. Mr. Jenkins has handed over the leadership of the S.D.P. to Doctor Owen amidst cries for proportional representation (the Liberal/S.D.P. Alliance only gained 3%% of the seats for 25% of the vote).

Responsibility for shipping has been switched from the Department of Trade and Industry to the Ministry of Transport, (D.Tp for short), whose new Minister is Mr. Tom King. Mr. Iain Sproat failed to retain his seat at the general election so we also have a new Permanent Secretary for Transport Mr. David Mitchell - who is directly responsible for shipping matters. However, these changes are unlikely to lead to any major change in Conservative policy on shipping: In a recent Parliamentary reply, when asked if the Government would take further steps to halt the decline in the Merchant Navy, Mr. Mitchell stated;

"I

am concerned at the decline in the merchant fleet, but do not propose to protect or subsidise of the industry must work together to improve its competitiveness. In international shipping negotiations I will continue to work for the widest possible access for British shipping to world trades. I will continue to minimise the burden of regulation, consistent with safety, and to take action against unsafe foreign shipping in British ports".

it. Both

sides

There has been a slight improvement in the percentage of British dry cargo vessels laid up, from 8%, (at the end of June as compared with the March figure), but tankers remain at27% and overall we have increased to 19%. The corresponding world figures are 7% for dry cargo vessels,22% for tankers and 14% overall.

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Editorial (continued) The G.C.B.S. produced its annual report at the end of May, in which it announced the unhappy news that a further 126 ships left the U.K. owned and registered merchant fleet during 1982, (that is 275 ships since the disastrous seamen's strike of 1981). We now have a fleet of 868 vessels, totalling

24.7 nillion deadweight tons. Owners not only sold tonnage in the abysmal trading conditions but put some of their ships under Dependency registers or foreign flags to avoid the high costs of U.K. manning. This freedom to "flag out" is most important to G.C.B.S. members as it does improve competitiveness and viability and provides the opportunity, not otherwise available, of retaining jobs for U.K. Officers in most cases. The composition of the U.K. Liner fleet remains potentially highly efficient and profitable. Courage and foresight in design, investment and organisation has produced the right fleet. Unfortunately, circumstances beyond our control, such as over-capacity in most trades, the world recession, nationalist policies and protectionism are conspiring to frustrate these advantages.

The tramp market has remained in the doldrums with no effective improvement in any aspect of dry bulk cargo movement. This situation is still with us and with surplus world tonnage on order, prospects of an early recovery are not encouraging.

But lest you believe that I preach nothing but doom and gloom perhaps I should point out that the British fleet, at about 25 million tons is the same size as it was n 1967. Much of the expansion thereafter was in tankers and bulk carriers and most of the decline since the 1975,50 million ton peak has been in those categories. Most ships types are bigger and more efficient, hence the drop in numbers, so it can quite satisfactorily be argued that our Industry is merely "cutting its cloth to fit". That way we stay viable. There are those who argue that, in order to remain competitive with our European colleagues and the rest of the world, we must pool our resources as an industry. Economies of scale should be sought ("Big is beautiful"), and it has been suggested that a Trafalgar House takeover of P. & O. would start a chain of amalgamations, (O.C.L./A.C.T. for instance), to provide our nation with a British version of a Hapag-Lloyd, Nedlloyd or even C.G.M. But the bigger the Company becomes so the decisiveness of, (and incentive for), individuals wanes and the slower such organisations seem to become in adapting promptly to problems and change. Loss-making results recently released by the afore-mentioned Companies show that size alone cannot overcome a world-wide recession. Certain economies of scale have been and are necessary, of course, but in the end it was Cinderella who gained the prize where her

big sisters failed!

In the meantime the Trafalgar House bid for P. & O. has been referred to the Monopolies and will not be made known for another three or four months.

Mergers Commission, whose findings

The senior management of Ellerman City Liners has now received the blessing of the Ellerman main Board to seek support from investment institutions in order to make an offer for the Group's shipping interests. If this "buy-out" succeeds it would be the management's intention to continue with the current strategy aimed at returning the division to profitability as soon as possible. There have been no further tangible developments in the last quarter, (except that Ellermans have divested themselves of their travel and leisure subsidiary), but we continue to monitor the situation closely.

Following the sale of the SPECIALIST in March and the reasons given at the time of her disposal, you will not be surprised to hear that continuing depressed charter rates with resultant poor trading results have led to the STRATEGIST being sold also. Hand-over of the vessel was effected at Ulsan on July l5th to her new Hong Kong owners. I understand that she has been re-named BARNWORTH although no records have yet appeared of her trading under that name. The RELIANT (ASTRONOMER) remains at Cammell Laird's yard in Birkenhead, undergoing her refit to an RFA helicopter carrier stores ship. Work has been delayed at least a month as a result of


Editorial (continued) strikes by boilermakers and welders in the yard, so she is not likely to sail until the end of September. Meanwhile the ASIA WINDS (ADVISER) and PORTLAND BAY ( CITY OF DURBAN) are operating satisfactorily on their respective Seawinds and O.C.L. charters. This being the 40th edition of your Newsletter, at four issues a year it marks the lOth anniversary publication. of In fact the editorial for News Bulletin No.l was written exactly ten years ago to the day! The event passes without ceremony but I shall merely use the opportunity to make a plea for more contributions from any of you who think you have something of interest that is printable in these pages. Any manuscripts, photographic material, correspondence, stories or poems will be welcome, (although I cannot guarantee to publish everything), but my stock is running low and is in need of replenishment. In answerto one comment I received recently from a Chief Engineer, (who shall remain nameless); contributing to this Newsletter certainly does NOT increase your chances of being sacked or made redundant! So please get busy with pen and paper.

l5th August,

1983.

*r.*.{<r< PERSONNEL

OBTTUARY Name

Mr. E.A. NICHOLAS Capt. C.V. WATTS Miss S.I. POW

Position

Died

Age

Joined Company

Retired Director Thomas Tweddle & Co. Retired Master Retired London Office

14.06.83 07.07.83

77

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07.06.28

Secretary

08.07.83

Position Charts Corrector

Retired 12.08.83

3l .01.16

RETIREMENTS Name Mr. M.W. LAWSON-

Age 65

Joined Company 02.12.44

SMITH

EXAMINATION RESULTS We congratulate the following on passing their examinations:B.M. M.G.

MARSH PAKES

Class Class

2 Motor 2 Motor

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FREDDIE MENDES RETIRES Another old friend of Harrisons officially departed from the scene recently when H.F. (Freddie) Mendes retired as Managing Director of George F. Huggins & Co. Ltd. in Trinidad. Freddie joined Huggins Customs Clearance Department in 1938 but soon moved to their Stevedoring Department where he remained until 1964 when, as Manager of the Cargo Handling Division, he moved to Head Office and became Manager of Huggins Shipping Department. He was appointed Director in 1968 and Managing

Director in 197 6. Throughout all those years Freddie and his family have befriended many Harrison visitors to Trinidad, (shore staff as well as seafarers), and have always made them very welcome with traditional Trinidad hospitality. He has been closely involved with Harrison shipping matters and all the attendant problems in Port-of-Spain, (with which we are only too familiar), for forty years. We wish him and Gloria a long and happy retirement' {< {< I {< * 3


DITTY BAG Sailing Ships Dear Sir,

I was interested to read in the last Newsletter about the sailing ship SENATOR, her record breaking voyage from Cardiff to San Francisco and the remarks about Cape Stiff. At the present moment I am endeavouring to collect information about the men and ships of Cape Horn so as to gSve a talk to our literary Club in Criccieth. The longest time a vessel took to try and sail around Cape Horn was in the barque DENBIGH CASTLE and the account can be seen in the book "Kicking Canvas" written by Captain Bisset of Cunard. She eventually had to run the Easting down and was 253 days at sea from Cardiff to Fremantle. My uncle was with the same Captain on the barque EDNYFED which was a 100 days overdue on a voyage from Trapani to Gloucester, Massachusetts. He was evidently a man who was afraid to carry sails. Basil Lubbock, in his book "Blackwall Frigates" mentions the SENATOR;when on a voyage from British Columbia to Liverpool.he came accross the three masted full rigged ship SUPERB, abandoned in 36 North 32 West and put the Chief Officer, Mr. John H. Wilson and five men aboard to attempt to salvage her. They succeeded in getting her safely to within 70 miles of Cape Trafalgar and the Spanish steamer JULIO took her in tow and brought her safely to Gibraltar in June 1900. Basil Lubbock also mentions the sailing ship ASTRONOMER in a cyclone in Calcutta in 1864 and the STATESMAN built by Marshalls at Sunderland.

Yours truly, Captain W.E. "Wassie" Williams {<*

The British Maritime League

About twelve months ago a new maritime organisation was launched, spearheaded by Admiral of the Fleet Lord Hill-Norton and the recently retired Chairman of O.C.L., Sir Ronald Swayne. The B.M.L. is an independent body with no political affiliation and its present Council of thirty members comprises not only distinguished Royal and Merchant Naval leaders but also Trades Union Officials, businessmen in the public and private sectors and University academics. The intention of the league is to promote Britain's maritime interests by:

(a)

Fostering national awareness of the prosperity which stems from seapower in its widest of adequate maritime forces, mercantile shipping, shipbuilding and repair, marine equipment, offshore operations, fishing, ship business and sense. This requires the maintenance

maritime commercial concerns.

(b)

By coordinating and disseminating information on maritime matters for the benefit of the public.

(c)

Et,couraging co.operation for the public good between the many elements of the economy connected with maritime affairs.

(d)

Drawing attention to any threats to the Country's maritime interests, thus helping to ensure that the Nation is never deprived of food, fuel, medical supplies and other necessaries and, further, that our exports may be made without unlawful hindrance.

(e)

Enlisting national support through membership of the league.

Like all such organisations the B.M.L. needs funding and increased membership in order to inform the public about the erosion of our maritime strengths and how the public are being affected;


Ditty

Bag (continued) The British Maritime League (continued)

to actively promote and encourage coordination of a maritime policy in Government, Parliament, industry and commerce, and to identify, and help to counter threats to our maritime interests.

If you would like to know more or, indeed, join the B.M.L. you can write to: The Secretary, British Maritime League, Beaufort House, St. Botolph Street, London EC3A 7DX. ,<*

Yesteryear Liverpool

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&ptain R.H. Jones in the tenth reyised edition of Word Lock & illustrated guide book "LIYERPOOL". lle think they were taken at about the turn of the century. Mersey Chamberc is clearly visible behind the floating bridge (above) at the Herhead and there is a Harrison "brandy boat" sailing out of the Prince's Dock (below). These two photographs were recently "dismvered" by

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Ditty

Bag (continued)

"Port-Pourri" The two U.K ports tlwt are called at by vessels in the CAROL and BEACON services recently relused their firwncial results for 1982. Felixstowe recorded a new high in pretax profits and announced that Wrt tonnage had risen to 7.6 million tonnes with container tmffic increasing by 18.5% compared with 1981. By compaison the port of Liverpool announced a fiading loss of f,9.5 million and a continuing reduction in both conventional cargo and container througltput. The latter was attibuted to the impact of the world recession by the M,D. & H. Co's Chairman but undoubtedly the shift in emplwsis to E.E.C. Counties for British exryrts and general trode has phyed a significant part.

Against this background and in his own prticalar fashion, the Editor of "Fairplay", (which magazine has now for 100 years), wrote the following onecdote after a visit to Liverpool in early July. His article is reproduced here with the kind permission of Fairphy Publications Ltd:

been published weekly

Liverpool Farewell

"One of my all-too rare visits to the Mersey last week. This once great city is seemingly turning its back on the sea that bore it, and there is not a great deal to justify a visit very often, these days. I used to love the place when I was a good deal younger, for all its dirt and ugliness, and it was a city that never seemed to be ashamed of its origins as a port, like London. It's greatest buildings, with the exception of the stadia at Anfield, had all been erected by the shipping community, great monuments to their own confidence, the art galleries were stuffed with treasures donated by dead Holts, Harrisons and Brocklebanks striving in their own inimitable way for immortality.

lts' all so very clean now, with pedestrian precincts, and scrubbed buildings, and great tracts of the city being cleared to erect industrial museums, technology parks and gardening exhibitions and generally find some sort of pseudo-employment for the revolting youth who seem to object, inexplicably, to the prospect of never having any work to do. All the great shipping buildings are being vacated now, turned over to pension funds and investment analysts and insurance companies. Can you, I wonder, insure against boredom? I found Cunard by accident (not that I was particularly looking for it) in a mean building up an alleyway behind a post office and wondered idly what Samuel would have made of it all. At least all the wild schemes for changing the Mersey ferries into hovercraft and hydrofoils seem to have come to nothing, for the old, proper ships that run to Birkenhead are still there fighting, even though you can no longer get a cup of poisonous tea at a filthy booth below decks. Across the water Cammell Lairds are full of oil rigs and a Harrison Line container ship, although you would scarcely recognise the latter as such as the "two of fat and one of lean" stripes on the funnel have been obliterated as she is turned into a Harrier carrier for the Royal Navy. Sign of the times really. Clearly Michael Heseltine learned something about sea power as well as flower power during his post-riot stint in Liverpool before he took over defence. The port is doing its best, although it is not easy being on the wrong side of the country when the emphasis is on Europe, with a tendancy to treat the whole of the U.K. as a place to feed, ratherthan risk direct sailings to. One can only wish Liverpool well, bucking the trend. It is a long time since I met a real Liverpool docker, a breed whose sense of humour was so singular that it is almost an art form in its own right. I have enduring memories of hysterical evenings listening to their jokes in those appalling pubs on the Dock Road, most of which have been bulldozed into useful vacant lots years ago as the thirst disappeared with the general cargo trade. Werk? Ye booger, there's none of that 'ere." *i.


Ditty

Bag (continued)

Falmouth

-

Spring 1983

This photograph shows the ASTRONOMER alongside Duchy Quay, having completed a three month refit after her voyage to the South Atlantic and prior to proceeding to Cammell Laird's Birkenhead yard to renew her M.O.D. charter and reconversion to an R.F.A. helicopter carrier.

** Old Photographs Captain "Wassie" Williams has sent us about 80 fascinating photographs that he took during his career at sea- They include many taken during the Second World War, in convoys and during the Burma campaign, but there are several others of ships and cargoes, Seamen and seamanship, people and places, taken during peacetime. They are all interesting and our thanks go to him for allowing us to share his experiences.


Ditty

Bag (continued)

Old Photographs (continued) From time to time, when space permits, we will reproduce some of Captain Williams' pictures in this newsletter and, in due course, his collection will be carefully preserved in the Harrison Museum atop Mersey Chambers. The Museum is a very good home for old photographs and anyone interested in learning a little more about the history, operations and traditions of our Company can while away an interesting hour there. There must be many of you who have lots of old photographs, taken during your time with Harrisons, that are tucked away at the back of a drawer, which you no longer look at or know what to do wittu If you have and think they may be of interest to others we would be more than happy to relieve you of them and would place them in the Museum for safe keeping and posterity. A little information about each picture, written on the back, would be of considerable help for recording purposes.

The Museum Curator is specifically on the lookout for pictures or photographs of one hundred of the older Harrison Line vessels. These are needed to complete the collection, presently displayed on the Museum wall, of the entire fleet from its earliest trading days up to the present. The missing ships

are:-

CRESCENT EUPHEMIA

1837 PEVERIL OF THE PEAK 1838 GLADIATOR (I) 1839 MONARCHY SIR COLIN CAMPBELL GEORGE WILKINSON I84O KING ARTHUR BENGAL 1842 DRAGON NrNA 1843 CHARENTE CHARLES SOUCHAY 1845 BOTANIST (I)

URGENT l84s RELTEF ROBERT PRESTON 184s ARTTST (1) DAUNTLESS 1846 CORDOVA EDWARD BOUSTEAD 1846 GOLCONDA REDBREAST 1846 AMAZON TEMPLAR 1846 ALICE CITY OF LINCOLN 1847 CHRYSOLITE GREAT BRITAIN I848 PANTHEON HERO 1848 WARRTOR (l) 1849 AYLESTONE HANNAH EASTTE MAZEPPA 1849 VANGUARD PAKENHAM 1849 JURIST (I) BLANCHE I85O STUDENT (I) 1850 AMBASSADOR (1) LAUREL 1850 ARBITRATOR (1) cooD TNTENT GOSSYPIUM 1850 LEGTSLATOR (l) 1851 CHANCELLOR (l) oLD ENGLAND l85l OBERON GEM HEBE 1851 LTNGUTST (l) DEVOMORT 1853 WARRIOR (I I) LANCASHIRE 1853 MEDIATOR (1) 1854 COMMANDER (r) coLr.JMBrA ADMTRAL GRENFELL 1854 DTSCOVERER (l) 1855 EXPLORER (l) oRKNEy LASS 1855 ORATOR (l) TIMANDRA WEST DERBY 18ss COUNSELLOR (l) GEOLOGTST (l) l8s9

1859 1860

I86I I87I

1862 1862 1863 1863 1864 1864 1864

I866

1866 1866 1867 1868 1869 1870 1871

I87I

1872 1872

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II.N/ENTOR (I) ARCHITECT (I) AUTHOR (1) MERCHANT (1) MARINER (1) ENGTNEER (1) SCULPTOR (I) ASTRONOMER (11) EDTTOR (1) NAVIGATOR (t) SCHOLAR (l) LEGISLATOR (1I) ORION VEGA PALLAS CHANCELLOR (11) BARRISTER (1) SENATOR (l l) PATRICIAN (I) YEOMAN CHANCELLOR (l I l) COMMODORE (l) CENTURION (1) ARTIST (11) SCULPTOR (1r) DTPLOMAT (l)

1872 1872 1874 1874 INYATI 1876 SPECTATOR (I) 1877 BARRISTER (11) 1877 GOVERNOR (11) 1877 INSTRUCTOR 1877 SCULPTOR (11l) 1877 BARRISTER (r I l)

1878

1880 I 880 t

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l88

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1882 I 882

1884 I 88s 1886 1886 1888 1889 1889 I 889

l89l 1893 1893 1901 1901

1902 1906 1908 1909 191 I

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t914 1915

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l8

1918

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should happen to have a print of one of these ships please let us know; even if you cannot we would like to have it copied. Now that Maritime England year has been extended into 1983 there will continue to be a number of Nautical Art Exhibitions around Britain, so please keep a look out

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TRADE REPORTS BULK CARRIERS by J.D. Arkell Within days of the last newsletter being published the freight rates dived to the level we experienced in October of last year and thus a daily time-charter rate of about U.S.$2,500-3,500 for our size of vessel. We had expected the usual Summer downturn of course, but towards the end of June, rather than the end of May. The way in which the rates plummetted illustrates only too well how finely balanced the market poised is between the pressures of supply and demand: In April and May rates began to rally, due to the number of vessels that had gone into lay-up, plus the first fledgeling sigrrs that the world economy was pulling out of deep recession. Unfortunately the delicate balance was tipped the other way overnight, due to vessels being tempted out of lay-u1i, the continuing stream of new tonnage from the world's shipyards and the usual seasonal downturn. Looking to the future is never easy, but we would hope to see an improvement in freight rates in the Autumn and, indeed, two leading firms of shipping consultants expect an upward trend to start about then and continue slowly through into 1984. We will have to wait and see if they are right! The WANDERER completed discharge in Jeddah on24th June, and was ordered into the Mediterranean unfixed, although we had looked at a cargo of phosphate out of Aqaba to Kandla and Port Okha, (but failed as Port Okha was unsuitable for our size of vessel). After clearing Suez the vessel was ordered to stop S.E. of Malta whilst we tried to work a cargo out of Tartous to China. When that failed the vessel continued towards Gibraltar and, in the meantime, we looked at a cargo of salt from Torrevieja to U.S. North of Hatteras. As the vessel approached Gibraltar we still had not found any cargo that was worth fixing, so after much discussion we elected to proceed towards the St. Lawrence on a track enabling us to alter course for the English Channel. Subsequently we fixed the vessel to the Iranians for a voyage charter from Samia and Trois fuvieres to Bandar Abbas (via Malta for much needed stores). The vessel left Malta on 2l st August, and at the time of writing there is the possibility that the Iranians will require the cargo to be discharged at Iskenderun for overland delivery to Iran. The WARRIOR, after her slow discharge in India, proceeded to Nauru, (via Singapore for bunkers), to load phosphate for Newcastle and Brisbane. Whilst en route to Nauru the weather looked to be set fair for a quick tum around, but they must have seen the WARRIOR coming and the weather deteriorated. However, after 5 days drifting, she berthed, loaded and sailed for Newcastle.

On completion of discharge at Brisbane the vessel was instructed to proceed to Newcastle in the hope of picking up a cargo but then, within hours, was instructed to anchor to await orders. After about half a day at anchor we ordered the vessel towards Sydney, where she eventually anchored to await orders. Then, whilst we looked at cargoes from New Zealand and Australia to Europe, also Nauru and Japan, we decided to topup with bunkers at Sydney.

After nearly a week at or off Sydney we fixed her for a cargo of coal from Newcastle to Ube and Hososhima. The vessel is presently due at Ube on l st September. The WAYFARER arrived off Aden on 30th May and is still there having commenced discharge on I lth August. She is not expected to complete until the beginning of October. Thereafter the vessel will proceed to a drydock port.

lt must be very boring for all onboard. However, with a favourable rate of demurrage the situation is not quite as bad as it appears, in commercial terms.


Trade Reports Bulk Carriers (continued) The LANTAU TRADER completed discharge of her alumina cargo in Aardalstangen and proceeded to Bergen for btinkers. Then, as we could find no cargo, she sailed for Flushing Roads to anchor and await orders. Whilst there, she took additional bunkers as a good price prevailed.

After three days at Flushing we decided to despatch the vessel down the English Channel with a view to ballasting to the U.S.A. However, when she was off Plymouth we fixed her for a cargo of steel products, chemicals and tramcars from Szczecin, Hamburg and Zeebrugge for Hong Kong and Manila. The vessel is presently at Hong Kong and expected to complete in Manila on 30th August. The LAMMA FOREST completed discharge of her coal cargo in Tsuruga on Znd,July, and proceeded to Moji to bunker and thence to anchor to await orders. Eventually she was fixed for a time charter trip from the Philippines, lndonesia and Malaysia to Northem Europe with timber products, which should keep her employed until the end of October.

You will not have failed to notice with all vessels that we have had to fight for every cargo, which result of the market downturn, not enough cargo and too many ships. is a

CAROL by G.C. Kendrick Trade levels continue to be severely depressed, both Westbound and Eastbound. The European holiday season, coupled with the general recession, has led to some very disappointing sailings but it is hoped that the build up to Christmas will result in some improvement. Our Eastbound carryings continue to disappoint, although a number of possible areas of improvement are being investigated, particularly in

the Conair field. The situation in Carol is constantly being monitored and measures taken, where possible, to reduce the Lines outgoings. Schedules have been adjusted to enable some savings to be made as a result of slow steaming and reduced overtime working. Currently, a Carol vessel leaves Liverpool, (the last European port), every I 1.5 days.

Port conditions generally in the Caribbean continue to be reasonably good, with the exception of Port of Spain, where a strike and go slow amongst the port workers almost forced Carol to charter a second feeder vessel. At the eleventh hour, this proved not to be necessary. Despite continuous pressure from the Trinidad Shipping Association, nobody seems willing to grasp the nettle and formulate a plan to bring stability to the port. Puerto Limon is shortly to erect a Portainer but heavy swell conditions for five months of the year is causing concern about possible damage to the vessels as well as this new crane. To combat the swell, additional heavy springs have been supplied to the ships. Rio Haina's port development is progressing and the new terminal could be ready by the end

of the year. Mr. Jonckheer, Manager of the Carol Co-ordinating Office at Hounslow, having completed his two years secondment from Nedlloyd, has now been replaced by Mr. Nicolas. For the past 6 years, Mr. Nicolas, from CGM, has been Carol's Operations Manager at C.C.O. Captain Embleton now takes over as Operations Manager. {.

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Trade Reports

EURGCARIBE by G.C. Kendrick As indicated in the previous Newsletter, the Service is operating with a reduced frequency. The results of this rationalisation are that the Venezuelan service is operating with a good level of occupancy and, of course, vessels are on outward charters only. The Colombian service, however, has experienced a severe downward trend in Westbound cargo due to the present state of the Colombian economy. Eastbound carryings have been encouraging so far, although this cargo is mainly our partnen' and for

Continental discharge. The two chartered vessels, COSTA RICA and HONDURAS operate the Colombian round-voyage service. Problems have been experienced in both Venezuelan and Colombian ports in recent weeks due to strikes. In Venezuela the problem was that the port workers had not been paid a proportion of, or in some cases their full wages, for two weeks. Settlement was eventually reached, but not before considerable expense had been incurred diverting vessels to ports which were working. Colombian ports were operated by Military and Agency personnel for a period during their strike, but the situation is now back to normal. Some delay was caused to the HONDURAS and the problem is now to get the vessel back into schedule.

BEACON by J.M. Hickling

In confirmation of the hope expressed in the last Newsletter, DOAL did indeed join the Beacon Service at the beginning of July, and the fourth large vessel, (CMB's Ahrenkiel type CRANACH), sailed from Felixstowe on her maiden voyage on 29th June. Contrary to expectations however, whereas Nedlloyd have still to confirm their wish to "join the club", CGM have agreed to come in from early October. This is a welcome addition to the service, and one effect will be to add Le Havre to the vessel's European ports of call.

A further item of news is that DOAL'S new containership UBENA, now building, is due to join the Beacon Service about the tum of the year, in place of one of the present Ahrenkiel's which will be completing her two year charter about then. The feeder service between Tanga and Mombasa is now in operation and initial support has been quite encouraging, although this has tended to be more Northbound than Southbound, resulting in "odds and bobs" presenting certain problems. Perhaps one should not have been too surprised that the new Terminal equipment in Mombasa as well as expected, and indeed productivity actually slumped alarmingly for a time; althought the last couple of ships have fared rather better - possibly not unconnected with the recent has

not performed

visit of a high-powered Beacon delegation! However, it would probably be over optimistic to count on a lasting improvement at least until the current Terminal development work has been completed and the "bugs" in the equipment ironed out. Commandante Correia has now returned to Europe after completing his l2 months period of secondment in Nacala - hard labour indeed! It remains to be seen how the port, (and railways), will manage to cope, especially when the rainy season starts in November.

In June, Captain Richard Olden completed several years as the British Line's Representative in Dar-es-Salaam. His place has been taken on the operations side at least, by our Mr. Ken McGeorge. **:F*{<

ll


DIARY OF HARRISON'SyLAST'TWEEN DECKER G.M. Stephenson

In 1971 the Charente Steam-Ship Co. purchased the m.v. ION, as a new vessel, whilst she was fitting out at Doxford and Sunderland's Pallion Shipyard. This 1 1,300 g.r.t. 'tween decker was renamed BENEFACTOR and spent most of the first seven years of her life trading on Harrison's liner routes mainly to South Africa. However, by 1978 most of our trades had been containerised and there was very little requirement for a general cargo ship of 17,000 dwt. tonnes on the routes to the Caribbean or South or East Africa. The decision was taken therefore, to make the vessel available on a regular basis on the charter market for trading world-wide. On June 2lst 1978 m.v. BENEFACTOR delivered to Continental Lines S.A. of Antwerp at Hamburg for a timecharter trip to Karachi and Bombay at $4,900 per day. The voyage lasted 76 days and was the first charter of a three and threequarter year period of almost continuous charter employment, during which time the vessel carried out the following voyages:

l.

Continent

Karachi & Bombay

Generals

Continental Lines

River Tees

Chrome Ore

BCC

Red Sea & Aden

Generals

Hansa Line

2. Maputo 3. Continent 4. Maputo 5. Continent 6. Georgetown 7. Poland 8. S. Korea & Japan

London

Sugar

Tate & Lyle

Caribbean

Generals

KNSM

Liverpool

Sugar

Booker Line

Madras

Steel

Grace Shipping

U.S. West Coast, Mexico & Costa Rica

Generals

KKK

9.

Mexico (West Coast)

Barcelona & Genoa

Cotton

TMM

(a) USEC (b) South Africa

South Africa Antwerp & Bremen

Generals Generals

Safmarine Safmarine

Venezuela, Colombia &

Generals

Harrison Line

South Africa

Generals

Safmarine

Montreal

Manganese Ore

G.T. Symons

Whampoa & Hsinkang

Generals

Chinese

Penang (Prai)

Sugar

CSR

Lorient & Brest

Tapioca

Toepfer

17. Continent & U.K. 18. Continent & U.K.

Aqaba

Generals

Jordan Nat. Line

Aqaba

Generals

Jordan Nat. Line

t9.

Continent

Venezuela

Generals

FMG

20.

U.S. Gulf & USEC

South Africa

Generals

Safmarine

10.

11. UK & Eire

Jamaica

12. USEC 13.

Port Elizabeth

t4. Montreal & Great Lakes 15.

Mackay

16. Panjang

(Indonesia)

This last charter was completed on the l6th April 1982, when the BENEFACTOR was sold to the Seltaka Shipping Company S.A., of Panama and renamed SOUTHERN LADY. Just over ayear later, on the 27th June 1983

t2

-

five years and six days after the commencement


Diary of Harrison's Last 'tween Decker (continued) of the aforementioned charter period the SOUTHERN LADY delivered for her latest fixture which read as follows: Continent

-

Karachi & Bombay

-

Generals

-

Continental Lines.

Rate $4,400 per day! Who says History doesn't repeat

itselfl!

Many of our ships are to be found in Austalian waters these days and those aboard will, no doubt, have admired the beauty of the longest reef in the world, though presumably from a distance. Captain Smith is now back near those waters, aboard the P0RTLAND BAY, (CITY OF DURBAN), and has kindly provided us with this article which was written when he was Master of the AWHOR

THE GREAT BARRIER REEF by Captain R.J. Smith The Great Barrier Reef was given its name by Lt. Flinders in 1802, whilst on a surveying voyage in H.M.S. INVESTIGATOR. The Australia Pilot, Vol. I 1 1, refers to this chain of reefs, coral cays and islands, which stretch for a thousand miles off Australia's North East Coast, as being unequalled in the world for its extent and obstruction to navigation, a fact bome out by the number of ships wrecked and lives lost on it over the years. Even on the day our Pilot departed a distress message was received, from a vessel that had run aground on one of the reefs lying off the eastem edge of the barrier.

Many of the ships lost were probably trying to make one of the passages through the Reef which lead to the Torres Strait between Australia and New Guinea and so into the Arafura and Timor Seas, this being the shortest route to India, Indonesia and Asia from the Australian East coast ports, New Zealand and the South Pacific Ocean. There is speculation but no firm evidence that the Arabs might have visited the area 2000 or so years ago, or the Portugese in the early sixteenth century but the first recorded sighting of the Torres Strait and Australia by a European is credited to the Dutchman, Captain W. Jansz, in the DUYFKEN. He approached and departed from the West without passing through the Straits, thinking it was part of the coast of New Guinea. The first European to actually traverse the Straits, (in 1606), was the Spanish navigator after whom it is named - Captain Luis Baezde Torres in the ship SAN PEDRICO but it was not until 1770 that the Reef and the East coast of Australia were more fully explored and charted by Captain Cook in H.M.S. ENDEAVOUR. He first sighted the coast near Cape Howe and sailed northwards, charting as he went and because he hugged the

The Great Barrier Reef Maine Park Authoity protects and marwges the reef and associated Islands along 1250 miles of the North East Australion coast. (A.I.S. photo)

l3


The Great Barrier Reef (continued) coas,t, he did not realise he was becoming entrapped by the reefs, until he ran aground on a coral cay near Cape Tribulation. Fortunately the crew were able to make good the damage and the voyage continued until, eventually, he passed through the Straits and sailed on to Timor.

The next person to pass through the Straits was Captain Bligh on his remarkable voyage in 1789 in the small 24 ft. boat he was set adrift in by the BOLTNTY mutineers. He crossed the Barrier Reef and transitted the Straits via the Prince of Wales Channel the first European to do so. This is the main channel used by most ships today.

-

In proceeding from Sydney or Brisbane to the Torres Strait there are two routes which can be used, the Inner or Outer route. As the names imply, one keeps to the inside of the reefs and the other stays outside until off the New Guinea coast, when the Barrier is crossed via the Great North East Channel. The Inner Route is preferred these days to the Outer, being well surveyed with numerous beacons and navigational aids. It also provides smoother water and a saving in time on the outer route. This was not always so; although the Inner Route was surveyed between I 81 8 and 182 I , the Outer route was generally preferred, (if the Torres Strait was to be used at all), until about 1874. This year saw the start of the Eastem and Australian S.S.Co. service from ports in Queensland to Indonesian ports and Singapore via the Torres Strait using steamships, and also the start of the Barrier Reef pilotage service.

ln one of the books used for reference - the newly published 'Reef Pilots' by Captain J.C.H. Foley - the author states that when this service was expanded shortly afterwards, to include Hong Kong and Melbourne, E. & A. chartered in various vessels on a temporary basis and among them was the Harrison Line vessel LEGISLATOR. Although not compulsory when using the Inner route it is strongly recommended that a Pilot be taken; this being arranged through Banks Bros. & Street, Sydney. Proceeding North, the Pilot joins either prior to sailing at the last port or off one of the East coast ports and departs off Booby Island once through the Torres Straits, making it the longest single handed pilotage in the world. There are various other boarding/disembarking points ranging from off Port Moresby, New Guinea, to off the Euston Reef Light Beacon, depending on which port a vessel is from or bound. The maximum draught is 1 1.9M at present but it is hoped to extend this to 12.2M shortly. Approximately 1500 ships a year use the Straits. The coral reefs and cays are low lying and not dissimilar to those off Belize, except that they do not appear to support as many palm trees. The islands nearer the coast, mainly composed of rock, are much more varied in size and shape. Some rise quite steeply from the seas and are mainly covered in grass and a type of pine. We were lucky enough to pass through the Whitsunday Group of islands one of the most scenic parts of the whole route in daylight.

-

-

Navigationally and scenically the passage through the Inner route was most interesting and

it

was made even more so by the anecdotes, information and snippets of history imparted by the Pilot, Captain Johnston, about the islands as they slipped past. I'm indebted to him for much of the following.

The Whitsunday Group is one of the larger group of islands with a number of holiday complexes built on them, serviced from the mainland by helicopters. They are ideal for watersports and related pastimes, and small pleasure steamers pass between the islands on day trips. One island called Linderman is owned by P. & O. and is sometimes used as a port of call by their ships cruising out of Sydney.

Middle Island is privately owned, by a cattle and sheep farmer who uses a small plane to keep in contact with the mainland. The children leam their lessons from the 'School of the Air' radio. Through the binoculars we managed to sight the two black billy goats and their respective

t4


The Great Barrier Reef (continued)

40 miles off the coast from Gladstone is the most Southerly touist resort of the Reef. It is a true coral cay and is surrounded by 5 miles of reef compising mnny types of coral and a wide vaiety of tropical maine life. At ight is a channel cut through the reef to give touist vessels access to the Island. (A.I.S. photo )

Heron Island

-

-

try

t

l.

*'

e'Y ,:i

*,*r*'',-***.

Hayman Ishnd on the Great Barrier Reef. (A.I.S. photo)

l5

t{

d

I


The Great Barrier Reef (continued) harems who have divided Dent Island between them. This island is up for sale.

The names of the islands in the Sir James Smith Group all relate to the trade of smithery Tinsmith, Goldsmith, Silversmith etc., or Anvil and Pincers.

-

A small Dutch passenger vessel ran aground on St. Bees Island and broke in half. The beached fot'd half was converted into a restaurant and used for a number of years until it was finally washed away by storrn. Lizard Island, off Cape Flattery was named by Captain Cook who, from the vantage of its highest point, searched for a gap in the reefs through which to take his ship in order to gain the open sea after running aground. It is now a State National Park with a marine research station and a small holiday resort which is used by the likes of Lee Marvin and Jack Nicklaus, as a base for swordfish fishing.

Shute Harbour, on the mainland at the Northern end of the Whitsunday passage. (A.I.S. photo).

Scattered in jumbled profusion over the land around Cape Melville and the islands off it, are thousands upon thousands of boulders of all shapes and sizes. It is thought that this is the result of a volcanic eruption many years ago. One of the larger boulders on one small islet had been painted white by local fishermen to make it more conspicuous after so many boats had run into it at night. A monument is marked on the chart standing close by Cape Melville; this was erected in memory of nearly 200 pearl fishermen who were drowned nearby when their fleet was caught at anchor by a cyclone in 1890.

Nearby Clack Island is taboo, except to Aborigines who use the caves, which riddle its interior, as burial chambers for their dead.

t6


The Great Barrier Reef (continued) As might be expected the whole Reef is a paradise for any one interested in fishing, though catching cray fish in one area has to be done by hand - they will not be tempted into a pot. When caught, their claws have to be held together otherwise the clicking noise made by them attracts the attention of sharks. Commercial fishing for prawns is also carried out. We passed a dozen or so boats anchored in the lee of the reefs in Princess Charlotte Bay whilst their crews slept; they fish at night. A tug and barge regularly brings supplies, fresh water and oil to them from Cairns, retuming with the catch in a refrigerated unit on the barge. The crews, among whom are a number of women, stay on the boats for up to six months at a time and if the boats do not return to Cairns, relief crews are also transported up on the tug. So finally to Booby Island, where the Pilot disembarked. At one time, provisions and fresh water were stored in a cave on the Island for the use of any shipwrecked seamen, and ships passing would leave mail to be collected together with the lastest navigational information about any newly

found hazards in the area. The future of the Reef is causing concern to ecologists who fear that it is threatened by, not only the commercial activities of man wishing to explore the area for oil or mine limestone, but also the voracious appetite of the 'Crown of Thorns' starfish. This creature, between 12 and 20 inches across, with its upper surface covered in spines, (hence its name), can eat up to 7 cubic feet of coral a week and has already laid waste quite large areas. Being able to regenerate itself it is most difficult to kill. I only hope these problems are resolved before this unique and magnificent Reef is significantly altered.

All the photographs in the previous article

have been supplied by the Australian Informntion Service (A.I.S. ) and are

reproduced here with their kind permission

***r<*<

THE PASSENGER SHIPS REMEMBERED By co-inci.dence both Captain Skelly and Captain Curle lwve sent in anecdotes recently, about certain memoies they have of Harison's days in the passenger buiness. Their stoies, although viewed lrom mtirely different aspects, do complement each other and are reproduced here with gmteful acknowledgement to the authors for having taken the time to put pen to papel

Now that another summer holiday season draws

ANTIGUA-BARBADOS GRENADA.TRINIDAD DEMERARA

to a close, this advertisement

serves as a convenient

introduction to these

memoiec It dates back to 1933 - iust 50 yean ago - and was uneothed recently by the Liverpool Bmnch of the Institute of Clw rt er e d S hipb r o k er s.

Uq lutl Pattictidt

TEOS.

s

&

drlly--

JAS. EAHRISON,

DOCK HOUSE, BILLITER OT., LOIIEOII, !.0.! ' J. D. HEWETT & CO. LTD., 11 (Lovor) REGENT st., LOXDOII, l.f.l

ot Lacal,4r.ilts.

t7


The Passenger Ships Remembered (continued)

LOOKING BACK ON S.S. INANDA AND INGOMA

by Captain H.G. Skelly

A very long time ago I started my life at sea. The ship was berthed at the North Wall of West India Docks, London;she was a small ship the, S.S. PROFESSOR, loading a general cargo for South Africa. En route down from Liverpool, a well meaning traveller on the train advised me to hire a hansom that was a week's gross pay cab and not a new fangled taxi as this would save half a crown on the fare and so I took it, and so arrived in a hansom cab, on a hot summer afternoon, one hour after the train's arrival at Euston. The poor horse was exhausted, the cabby went in search of a water tap for his bucket, and I began a long hard apprenticeship.

-

The year was 1925; I was sixteen years of age. Much could be written about the next four years, but I spare the reader that, for it serves here only as an interlude to my introduction to the steamers INANDA and INGOMA, names hardly remembered by most Harrison Line personnel today.

All good and bad things come to an end, and in 1930, having obtained a second mates certificate, I was sent back to that same berth in London to join the INANDA. This appointment wasn't much use for furthering my long term career, because I was only to be their Fourth Officer and no time in that capacity qualified one for further certificates. However, it paid f l3 per month - a considerable increase over the 03 on my last pay slip - and there were not too many jobs offering in those days. The two ships INANDA and INGOMA ran six-weekly voyages to the West Indies, and spent two in the West India Dock in between. Their names were inherited from the Rennie Line, which weeks Harrisons bought in 19 1 1 , and they carried some five thousand tons of catgo, and eighty or so oncclass passengers.

The Master and the other three deck Officers all held foreign going Master's certificates, so not count for very much. But I was willing to learn and everybody was willing to teach me.

I did

The European sector of the crew was considerable. One Doctor, five Engineers (four with first class certificates) two Radio Officers, one Puner/Chief Steward, one Second Steward, two Stewardesses, a Barman, Storekeeper, Chef, Butcher, Baker, Chief Cook, Second Cook and Scullion Boy. There were also waiters, bedroom and bathroom stewards and four Quartermasters. Sixteen Lascar seamen lived aft, together with twenty-one firemen and they had their own two galleys and two cooks. A Quartermaster was paid 09.10.0 per month, a steward f8.12.6. and the highest paid Indian, the serang, f,6 per month. The wage bill must have been considerable for there were so many of us, in fact we could not possibly have made a profit, for the passengers only paid f32lt40 a single passage, or 075/f,80 the round voyage, with three days ashore at the Park Hotel in Georgetown all included in the ticket. Leaving London we always made for the South of Santa Maria in the Azores. So many young children could be ill with seasickness we needed the fine weather quickly, and that was the best route to find it.

After that we made for Antigua, to land the Northern Islands passengers and cargo, then proceeded to Barbados, St. Vincent, Grenada, Trinidad and Demerara. in the Caribbean, cargo work continued day and night and with the last sling out we were off to the next port. All mails, freezer cargo, specials and baggage were checked in and out by Officers, and When

we more or less worked watches after that.

l8


The Passenger Ships Remembered (continued)

Looking Back on S.S. Inanda and Ingoma (continued)

s :,:

L'& r,$

si:

ffi te*

:i

(Above) S.S.

INGOMA, built 1913,

(Below) S.S.

INANDA,

5686 g.r.t. Sold 1937 to Italitn buyers;rennmed SANGIOVANNI BATASTA. Scuttled 19th January 1943 at Tipoli

built 1925,

5985 g.r.t. Bombed and sunk in London Docks 7th September 1940. Raised; became

Ministry of War Transport EMPIRE EXPLORER, with passenger accommodation removed and again sunk by enemy action (torpedo) off Trinidad 8th July 1942.

t9


The Passenger Ships Remembered (continued) Looking Back on S.S. Inanda and Ingoma (continued) On the run out we had compiled master books and hatch books from the London P.L.A. Inward tally books and we did this work in our watch below. We surely became the world's best scribblers! The second Officer checked off the master book and we departed to the next island when he was satisfied all the cargo was out for that port.

Labour contractors supplied the labour to discharge the cargo, supervised by the rotund and gentlemanly Mr. Niehtingale in Barbados, Big John Labash in Trinidad and Old Joe White in Demerara. All were characters. Trade Unions were unknown in the West Indies, and there were no stupid frustrations to real work. There was just a rate for the job. They got on with it, and so did we. There were no harbours at any island; it was all open anchorage work, except for the wharves on the Demerara River. We seldom went ashore; we did not wish to really, for life was interesting and very full on board. Food and conditions on board were excellent. Meals contained many courses of well cooked and enjoyable dishes. The junior Officers had their own small table in the dining saloon. Senior Officers had tables of their own, scattered amongst the passengers. On the ocean stretch, Senior Officers and passengers dressed for dinner at 1900 every night except Sunday. lnter-island it was not so demanded. Sunday moming Church Service was held in the Music Room at 1000 and the Quartermaster tolled the bell on the forecastle head to call out the faithful. The ladies wore hats, the Captain read the service, and the piano accompanied the hymn singing. The plate was passed round for the Seamen's Orphanage. All Officers were expected to go to church, and did. It was all very well done. The usual deck games could be played after church, but not before.

In the music room there was a library for the passengers of one hundred books and a radio gramophone type of instrument, with loud speakers to the top deck for evening dancing, or aftemoon tea music. The usual deck games, sweeps, treasure hunts, fancy dress dances and amusements were well organised, and bridge and little gambling games were run in the smoke.room at night. If anybody wanted more for their thirty-five pounds they were peculiar. But they seldom did, and were mostly happy and frequently said so. In fact many passengers were regular customers. Up to the year 1937 I enjoyed this particular life at sea. I did have one year ashore in 1932 which I hated, being then surplus to any requirements of the Harrison Line. I was also a victim of the Government's "Means Test", for the Big Depression was at its worst period. If you did not work, you did not eat in those days. However, I was fortunate enough after that year, to be offered a Quartermaster's job in the INGOMA and the opportunity to slowly work my way up the ladder to the good times again. At that time there were four Masters and one Extra Masters certificates on the bridge, and three of the four Quartermasters held second mates certifi cates!

ln London, half the crew were laid off, or on leave and we were supplied with a midday lunch on board and half a crown subsistence allowance for the other two meals on the week days. We were given four shillings for Saturday and Sunday. One of us, armed with a shopping bag, would go to Crisp Street Market, off East India Dock Road and buy the week's food. Chickens for 2l6d each, eggs l/- per dozen and bacon l/- per lb. Food was cheap;we bought it, cooked it, and ate it on board. We lived well. Mr. Renstead, the elderly retired Rennie Line Relief Officer, would board at 1700 and do the night duty. We would go to Lyons Tea Shop, opposite the Blackwall Tunnel entrance, and eat there. We knew everybody who worked in the establishment and received the best the kitchen could provide. Occasionally, kindly passengers would invite one or two of us out, maybe to their homes, maybe to End Restaurant, and/or a theatre. One Antigua family frequently did this. Their car and chauffeur called for us, deposited us at their London home for dinner and on afterwards to the theatre, then back

a West

20


The Passenger Ships Remembered (continued)

Looking Back on S.S. Inanda and Ingoma (continued)

to West India Dock. Life took on an "Upstairs/Downstairs" flavour and we had a little toe "Upstairs" now and again. It was very enjoyable.

ln

1937 I had the necessary qualifying time in for another certificate and so I said a sad goodbye to what had become a way of life. Most of us had been together for a long time, and I had known all the pleasures the best of good companions could give. The passengers too had provided much of what was worth having. In 1938, soon after I left, the INGOMA was sold to the Italians, and a Harrison-built new INKOSI took her place.

It is only fitting to finish this story with how it all ended and why. In 1939 the West Indian passenger service ceased, due to World War II Shipping Ministry control. The INKOSI was bombed in West India Dock, salvaged, and fitted up again to sail out as an ordinary cargo ship. She survived until 1958. The INANDA was sunk by a German 'U' boat in the Caribbean in 1942. The INGOMA however, ended up fighting on the wrong side: In 1942 a R.N. Ofhcer told me he had seen her bombed out and sunk in a North African port. This fact I could never verify, but to me it could never be the end I would wish for them. They gave me the happiest years of the forty-seven I spent at sea and many other Harrison Line personnel only remembered them with affection. They certainly were the nicest way to go to sea in those days, or in fact the nicest way to go in any days. But they died with the war and never came back.

** 'THE PIRATES OF PORT-OF-SPAIN' or'THE ABORTIVE RAPE OF THE INANDA' by Captain J.L. Curle Aeons ago, or in what could loosely be called the 'Steam Age', I had reached the dizzy heights of Second Mate of one of our third class ships, to whit the SCHOLAR, alternating between our two passenger vessels, the INANDA and INGOMA, on the London/West Indies run. On arrival at our terminal port of Georgetown, Guyana, we were engaged to ferry sugar to Port-ofSpain. Apart from the numerous bars in the 'Tiger Bay' district of Georgetown, there was one of a different type, some 12 miles off the port, which limited our draft to about 20 feet or some two thousand tons of

(Above) S.S. SCHOLAR, built 1922, 3940 g.r.t. Torpedoed and sunk by enemy action off the 1940. 21

lish

coast 21st September,


The Passenger Ship Remembered (continued)

'The Pirates of Port-of-Spain' or 'The Abortive Rape of the Inanda' (continued)

,.'$1f i$rj.sii

^t

S. /1/1(O,S1,

built 1937, 6618 g.r.t. Bombed and sunk in London Docks 7th September 1940. Raised for Ministry of lilar Transport and Wssenger accommodation removed; became EMPIRE CHIVALRY. Purchased from M.O.lil.T. in 1945, renamed PLANTER. Sold to Belgian breakers at Ghent in 1958.

bagged sugar. When we arrived at Port-of-Spain we would lie alongside one of our vessels, discharge directly into her and sail back to Georgetown; "A nice soft number", thought I.

On our third ferrying run, thebtzz went round that our cargo was for the INANDA - what a starching and ironing of 'number tens', what a blancoing of shoes, and "what the hell did I do with that box of regalia"? On arrival at Port-of-Spain our hopes for at least one decent meal were blighted. "No way is any crummy cargo boat coming alongside me" quoth the passenger vessel. If there were any 'parlour games' to be played such as'I spy with my little eye' peeping through portholes, it would be played by the Officers and Gentlemen, not by a bunch of 'cargo boat wallahs'. The sugar would have to be lightered. Naturally we were highly incensed at such cavalier treatment, and swore a solemn oath over a bottle of 'Nelson's Blood' that we would wreak vengeance on the upstart.

Six months later our patience was rewarded. On anchoring off Port-of-Spain we noted the object of our revenge anchored a mile ahead of us. Gone now were the starched 'number tens' and the blancoed shoes;in their place were the most villainous bunch of pirates that could scare the living daylights out of any fair maid that fell into our clutches, aided and abetted by a lavish amount of burnt cork, flag repair, bunting and such galley utensils as cleavers, nasty looking knives and toasting forks. 'Sparky' was armed with a steel, in the event that some of our captured'birds'should prove to be'boilers'. On a night as black as our intent and with muffled oars, we glided silently over the limpid waters the Gulf of Paria: Only three more cables to row and INANDA would be in our clutches. Then on came her steaming lights, off went her anchor lights and with three derisive toots on her whistle and a wicked wiggle of her stem, she disappeared over the horizon at a rate of knots, leaving in her wake a gaggle of exceedingly deflated pirates!

of

Where are those two old ladies now? Rather more than 'Full fathoms five' they lie rusting away, the INANDA off Tobago and the SCHOLAR off Ireland. R.I.P. the pair of you and thanks for the pleasant

memories. {<d<{<r<*

22


SPORT

CROWN GREEN BOWLING by Tom Mitchell Since the last report we have completed the 1983 season. It is pleasing to note that we have had our most successful season so far, as we have won six games and lost four by only the narrowest of margins, (total number of games played was l2). The League positions arc yet to be finalised as one or two teams still have fixtures to complete, but we understand that at the moment we are placed third in the league. In the Cup games, whereas last season we reached the final, this year we went out first round due to the Captain who, as the saying goes, "bottled it" in the final match of the night, when needing only one

point for victory! My thanks to all players for their splendid effort over the season and our best wishes go to last year's Captain for a speedy recovery from his present illness.

TENNIS by Roy Hoodless The annual Tennis Tournament was held at Bebington Oval in late June/early July. While the Men's Tournament was well supported, the Ladies could only produce four willing volunteers, Audrey Hughes defeating Angela Johnstone 6-0, 6-0 in the Final. The Men's Singles Final was contested by Mark Johansen and Roy Hoodless, Mark regaining his title from last year's winner 6-1. 7-5.

Due to the limited number of Lady tennis stars, it was necessary to hold a "mixed" Mixed Doubles Tournament which was won by Jonathan Croft and Roy Hoodless, who defeated Jan Wharton and Ray Holland 6-2,6-2 in the Final. Once again the matches were good-humoured and enjoyed by all participants. We can only hope for increased support (particularly from the Ladies) next year to continue to make the Tournament a success. *{<

THE RUNNING TEAM by Phil Aldag

The running

tum line up

(from left to ight);SUKU

(It's the Garlic) BISIUAS, STEVE (I'm Fit) CAIN, PHfL (Oh there's that noise again)ALDAG, DAVE (Seb

for Short) PARSONS,

DAVE (Marathon Man) FURY.

23


Sport

-

The Running Team (continued)

The newly formed Harrison Line running team entered their first (fun) race as a group in a five' miler, towards the end of June. They came twenty-ninth out of fifty-five teams. On July lOth a ten and a half mile fun race was held in North Wales in which they again participated but the first four miles were uphill, it was a very hot day and they were somewhat delayed passing four pubs! The writer managed to finish in one hour and thirty-eight minutes in a half marathon on August l4th and the whole team is now in full training for the Wirral Marathon on September I I th; however on that occasion they will be running in the colours of "Pathetic Athletic!" ***{<*

EASTERN BEASTIE Mr. John Haris, (Second Offrcer, mv. ASIA WINDS), wrote to the Editor in May and enclosed the following poem It was witten by Mr. Ian Guy, who was on watch with Mr. Harris on the 12 - 4 together with Mr. Phil Littlewood A.B. Mr. Hanis sets the scene. . . . .

"The incident that Mr. Guy refers to in his ode happened as the ASIA WINDS was approaching Hong Kong. As Second Mate, I had occasion to enter the Chart Room in order to fix the vessel's position, whereupon I was confronted with an insect, nay, flying creature, of enormous proportions and teeth to match. Of course, I battled through, eventually managing to fix the vessels position. Being conscientious and not wishing to leave the wheelhouse unattended, I left the Chartroom with some haste, (not undue haste you understand - just quickly) and once back at my post, I delegated the despatch of this Chartroom squatter to my Watchkeeper, although, as Mr. Guy implies, it took the endeavours of both my Watchkeepers to complete the eventual eviction".

THE 2ND MATE & THE BEAST by Ian Guy The 12 - 4 were gallant men Gallant men all three All went well that stormy watch Upon the China sea

A.B.

-

No weapons did this warrior need Just one man standing by And in he moves without a fear Proclaims " 'Tis but a fly" !

Though thunder roared and lightning The men stood firm and able Until a Beastie did alight upon the Chartroom table

flashed

A cry was heard from the glimmering

light

above the rain and hail "Look out"! cries Sec, "a beastie

with homs and a twelve foot taif

'

He wrestled with the fearsome beast

And overcame the thing Soon the danger has all passed He retreats to the starboard wing.

waits

The Second Mate can now relax With his watch of warriors kind And retum once more to his books & charts With ease of heart and mind

With sliderule as a mighty sword Brown's almanac in hand The Second Mate pursues the beast To drive it from our land

The 4 - 8, relief they bring

A clap of thunder heralds now The hero of this tale A warrior by the name of Phil Streaks in from wind and gale

The 12 - 4 were gallant men Gallant men all three All went well that stormy night Upon the China sea.

Knew nothing of our plicht For now the beast is long since gone On this dark and stormy night

X*X*{.

24


PERSONNEL LISTS AS AT 6th SEPTEMBER 1983

R.B. Simmons K. Dornan N.G. Rebeiro R.D. Hunt J.E.D. Gascoigne R.R. Baxter J.M. Holt A.R. Gargan M.G. Pakes P. Burrows I.A.H. Weir A.E. Bates M. Mclver D.P. Pisani D.G. Ashley G.K. Allison C. McGuinness

Master Officer

Chief 2nd Officer 3rd Officer Chief Engineer 2nd Engineer 3rd Engineer 4th Engineer 5th Engineer

Electrician Deck Cadet Engineer Cadet Engineer Cadet Engineer Cadet Catering Officer Radio Officer lst

"o*ffir,n P.C. Littlewood

O. Owen

A.G. Brown J.P. Brown N.D. Andrews I.D. Guy W. Holmes E.A. Howard L.S. Smith R.A. Smith G. Griffiths B. Whelan H. Davies P. Cunningham C. Adderley

Seaman Grade I Seaman Grade 1 Seaman Grade I Seaman Grade I Seaman Grade I Seaman Grade 1 Seaman Grade I P.O. Motorman

P.O. Motorman Motorman I

Chief Cook Chief Cook 2nd Steward 2nd Steward Steward Steward

Chief Petty Officer ..ASIA WINDS'' (ADVISER)

R.H. Jones

Master

I. Mathison

Chief Officer 2nd Officer 3rd Officer Chief Engineer 2nd Engineer 3rd Engineer 4th Engineer 4th Engineer I st Electrician I st Electrician Deck Cadet Engineering Cadet Engineering Cadet Engineering Cadet Catering Officer Radio Officer

P.N. Humphreys

R.T. Lamming J.K. Amsbury J.R. Barker M. Kavanagh D.P. Lyons M.G. Whittaker T.L. Allen R. Aspinall P.R. Fleetwood J. Fish M. Lowther J.C. Newsome N. Thomas P.J. Johnson

D. Hignett T.E. Connell K. Carrier D. Farrell D. Meaney W.A. Newman J. Lewis W.T. McGinty R. Stading J. Warburton F.J. Berry W. O'Brien J. McGeough S. Curran S.J. Ellis S.W. Neild R. Stocks

Chief Petty Officer Seaman Grade I Seaman Grade I Seaman Grade I Seaman Grade I Seaman Grade I Seaman Grade I Seaman Grade I Carpenter P.O. Motorman Motorman I Motorman I Chief Cook 2nd Cook Steward Steward Steward

RFA "RELIANT" (ASTRONOMER) W.W. Gibson

G.W. Ellis J. Carpenter H.C. Mclntosh

I.M. Thorburn R. Burrows

Chief Officer 2nd Engineer 3rd Engineer 3rd Engineer 4th Engineer lst Electrician

J. Duffy

Catering Officer

F.A. Goulding

Chief Petty Officer Seaman Grade I Seaman Grade I Motorman 1

C. MacCallum G. Wiggins

D. Boyd

"PORTLAND BAY" (CmY OF DURBAN) N.A. Jardine G.A. Stewart

2nd Officer

G.R. Davies

3rd Engineer

3rd Officer

..LAMMA FOREST'' B.W. Jones J. Mealor

Master Chief Officer

G. J-Jones S. Brunton 25

Chief Engineer 2nd Engineer


..LANTAU TRADER" K. Long P.D. Holloway

Master

Chief Officer

J.C. Sinclair M.S.E. Fox

Chief Engineer 2nd Engineer

..WANDERER'' R.H. Williams J.A. Northam A. Atkin A.J. Sharpe W.M. Duff D. Wood G.J. Martin

Master

P.E. Paterson

Chief Officer 2nd Officer 3rd Officer Chief Engineer 2nd Engineer 3rd Engineer

I.A. Ainscough R. Maher

A. Noon S.R. Brown N. Coppell M.N. Pitcher

4th Engineer 5th Engineer 5th Engineer I st Electrician Deck Cadet Catering Officer

Radio Officer

..WARRIOR'' R. Bell M.E. Stoddart J.P.A. Billing P.S. Dickens J. Lee E.H. Bent P.V. Kelly

Master

Chief Officer 2ndOfficer 3rd Officer Chief Engineer 2nd Engineer 3rd Engineer

J. Moore J. Robertson

F. Speed K.B. Kenyon D. Dewar F.D. Farthing

4th Engineer 4th Engineer 5th Engineer I st Electrician Catering Officer Radio Officer

..WAYFARER'' T. Wilson D.W. Brennan B.H. Birch D.I. Caig D.A. Williams C.G. Barber A.J. Seafield

Master

Chief Officer 2nd Officer 3rd Officer Chief Engineer 2nd Engineer 3rd Engineer

F.J. Gardiner N.W. Thompson P. Mault

J.F. McCormick A.J. Shepherd A.D. Eady J. Sheehan

4th Engineer 5th Engineer 5th Engineer lst Electrician Deck Cadet Catering Officer

Radio Officer

OFFICERS ON LEAVE H.S. Bladon J. Maddison F. Martin E.J. Maxwell A.F. Perry

C.D. Riley R. Shipley D. Skillander R.J. Smith R. Taylor F.L. Steele G. Batchelor R.A.C. Bourne J.H. Brierley R.J. Dobson A.T. Joyce G.S. Laird D. Newton G.A. Walter M.H. Farmer W.J. Butcher J.C. Harris P.G. Masters

Master Master Master Master Master Master Master Master Master Master Master

Chief Officer Chief Officer Chief Officer Chief Officer Chief Officer Chief Officer Chief Officer Chief Officer 2nd Officer 2nd Officer 2nd Officer 2nd Officer

B.A. McCleery P.B. Mimmack

G. Omalley A.J. Patterson A.M. Powell P.G. Wood T.R. Greig P.A. Ellis

w.A.c. Gill S.J. Lowe

J. Murray B. Walker P.R. Walton R.D. Bishop

D.B. Brassey R. Cameron G. Craig M.C. Harris B.D. Hart L. Hedley W.J.M. Joseph S.T.P. Matthews M.D. Mclaren 26

2nd Officer 2nd Officer 2nd Officer 2nd Officer 2nd Officer 2nd Officer 3rd Officer 3rd Officer 3rd Officer 3rd Officer 3rd Officer 3rd Officer 3rd Officer Chief Engineer Chief Engineer Chief Engineer Chief Engineer Chief Engineer Chief Engineer Chief Engineer Chief Engineer Chief Engineer Chief Engineer


Officers on Leave (continued) J.E. Jenkinson

T.E. Bulley M.J. Christian D.M. Dawber K.E. Duffy P.A. Keelan J.H. Maskell A.R. Mclaggan D.J. Nevin A.J. Thompson G.T. Cadman R. Milne R.P. Rees T. Rothwell J. Carr A.J. Soens R.W. Wilson A. Ashman J.A. Chadwick L. Hall M.R. Lewis P.S. Waterfall R.E. Whitaker R.F. Allmark D Edwards S.N. Jeffrey D.H. Knight B. Marsh D.R. Moody M.R. Thomas B.S. Coppack S.N. Bailey R.R. Beck S. Green

M.J. O'Reilly C.S. Hollas

L.H. Hughes Taylor E.R. Norman

P.

E.W.C. Lloyd J.J. Lowry M. Cox

D.G. Furmston G.C. Hughes R. Johnson K.A. Jones K.J. Graham J.R. Rees A.R. Thompson H.G. Williams R.N. Drew A.T. Walsh J. Hampson G.E. Whitehead H.J. Williams

Chief Engineer 2nd Engineer 2nd Engineer 2nd Engineer 2nd Engineer 2nd Engineer 2nd Engineer 2nd Engineer 2nd Engineer 2nd Engineer 3rd Engineer 3rd Engineer 3rd Engineer 3rd Engineer 3rd Engineer 3rd Engineer 3rd Engineer 4th Engineer 4th Engineer 4th Engineer 4th Engineer 4th Engineer 4th Engineer 5th Engineer 5th Engineer 5th Engineer 5th Engineer 5th Engineer 5th Engineer 5th Engineer 5th Engineer I st Electrician I st Electrician I st Electrician lst Electrician I st Electrician lst Electrician I st Electrician 2nd Electrician Deck Cadet Deck Cadet Engineering Cadet Engineering Cadet Engineering Cadet Engineering Cadet Engineering Cadet Engineering Cadet Engineering Cadet Engineering Cadet Engineering Cadet Catering Officer Catering Officer Catering Officer Catering Officer Catering Officer

SECONDMENTS

K.A. McGeorge W. Nute

R. Babooram

Chief Officer, Beacon Representative - Dar-es-Salaam. Chief Officer, Sagumex Office Houston, Stowage Planning. 2nd Officer, Carol Representative - Trinidad.

OFFICERS ON SICK OR STUDY LEAVE OR ON TRAINING COURSES. P.M. Basham R. Jackson

B.L. Jones J.W. Watson A.W.C. Cooper R.M. Hudson M.J. McDonough G.G. Davenport H.G. Jones S.D. Mellors

N. Pritchard I.E.J. Robinson RATINGS ON LEAVE

A.M. Bowen A.D. Bowyer F. Byrne D.T. Coogan R.T. Farrington J. Fitzgerald P. Gilmour M.C. Hunt D.W. Jeffrey S. Johnson J.K. Jones S. McCarthy

P.J. Keegan

A. Kourellias B. Moran B. Prendergast J. Preston J.T. Roberts J.E. Rowlands R.G. Taylor H. Thomas C.W. Thornton G.R. Tiesteel

27

3rd Officer 3rd Officer 3rd Officer 2nd Engineer Deck Cadet Deck Cadet Deck Cadet Engineering Cadet Engineering Cadet Engineering Cadet Engineering Cadet Engineering Cadet


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::ii:l:: :::------- .--:::.:::-::::-::-:::::::-:::-:-llll:--ll!:ill:!ll:l!!:--------------!ll:lll:1lt:!l!:tt!:---------?a


APPROXIMATE GEOGRAPHICAL POSITION OF VESSELS 6th SEPTEMBER 1983"

APPROXTMATE POSTTTON OF VESSEL

c

DIRECTION OF STEAMING

*

7 WANDERER + IAUUAFOREST I ASIAWINDS(ADVISER) -LongBeach,Cal || 5 LANTAUTRADER -Sandakan,N.Borneo I| 8 WARRIOR 2 REUANT(ASTRONOMER)-Birkenhead,UK 6 PORTLAND BAY -Subic,Philippines 9 WAYFARER 3 AUTHOR Port au Prince, Haiti 'l (CITY OF DURBAN) Tilbury, U.K. -

Iskenderum,Turkey Hososhima,Japan Aden

News letter No40  

Harrison Line news letter No40

News letter No40  

Harrison Line news letter No40

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