LIVERPOOL SHIPS - The Final Years
Llongau Lerpwl - Y Blynyddoedd Dwythaf
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|In 1914 the
British (Empire) merchant fleet stood at 10,100 vessels. During the
First World war 3,400 ships were lost and 16,000 merchant seamen killed.
In 1938 there were over 9,000 ships under the red ensign. (Talbot Booth 1939)
Gwynedd men sailed on the Liverpool ships (and from other ports) in all trades and at all ranks and rating..
During WW II. 35,000 merchant seamen were killed and 2,476 ships lost. Every company lost ships and an emergency building propramme was instigated. Standard "Liberty" and "Fort" ships were built in amazingly fast time. Those built in Britain were given the prefix "Empire" and those built in North America, when managed by British companies, the prefix "SAM". After the war the shipping companies handed most back but some were retained and traded up to the 1960s.
The 1950 and 1960s were good years and the fleet was rebuilt but it proved to be the final curtain for the once proud Merchant Navy.
The loss of the colonies, introduction of containerisation and the "flaging out" of ships to flags of convienience with thirld world crews were the death knell.
Five years ago when I started this website there were only 300 vessels under the red ensign. Happily there has been an improvement and today (2004) there are over 500.
Britain remains a major maritime power despite the low number of home registered ships. Much of maritime charrtering, brokerage and insurance is conducted in the United Kingdom, Gibraltar, Isle of Man, Channel Islands, Cayman Islands
|Yn 1914 fe 'roedd ddeng
fil o llongaua yn y llynges fasnachol. Yn y Rhyfel Gyntaf collwyd 3,400
llong a 16,000 forwyr.
Yn 1938 yr oedd drost 9,000 llongau yn flio'r ensign gôch. Hwyliodd dynion Gwynedd ar llongau Lerpwl ( ac allan ô porthladoedd eraill) yn bôb fasnach a mewn
Collwyd 2,476 ô llongau a bron 35,000 ddynion yn yr Ail Rhyfel. Collodd bôb cwmni llongau ac yr oedd rhaid adeiladu rhei newydd yn unwaith. Adeiladwyd llawer ô llongau "Liberty" a "Fort" yn Gogledd Amerig a Frydain mewn amser byr iawn. Rheolwyd 'rhein gan cwmnîaid yn Frydain a cadwodd rhywfaint ar ôl î'r rhyfel orffen.
|Yr oedd y 1950 a
1960degau yn mlynyddoedd dâ ac ailadeladwyd y llynges ond yr oedd
hwn yn machlud y Llynges Masnachol.
Colliant yr Ymoerodraeth, tecnoleg newydd a"fflagio allan" y llongau gyda criwiau o wladau tlawd oedd y resymau.
|Pan ddechreais y wefan yma ond rhyw 330 o llongau 'roedd ar y cofrestr Brydenig. Y mae'n dda i weld heddiw (2004) rhyw 500 o llongau yn galw ein wlad eu cartre.|
|Here is a medley of Liverpool companies, ships, their colours and their trading routes from this period, (1950s to the 1980s), some other regular callers, and afterwards, some items on what is left today.||Dyma amrywiaeth o cwmniaid Lerpwl, llongau, eu lliwiau â'u ffyrdd masnachol ô'r amser yma, ymwelwyr eraill a wedyn, ychydig o eitemau am beth sydd ar ôl heddiw.|
|Of course, Liverpool is still a major port today and as much tonnage is handled as before but with far fewer ships and men. A 20,000 ton container ships and a 30,000 ton bulk carrier do the work of perhaps eight of the older ships and carry smaller crews.||Wrth gwrs, y mae Lerpwl yn dal i fôd yn porthladd pwysig heddiw a cyn gymmaint ô dunelli yn cael eu llwytho a dadllwytho ers erioed . Y mae'r llongau fawr heddiw yn wneud y waith o llawer o llongau traddodol hefo llai o griw.|
|Alfred Holt's "Ocean Fleets" -
Blue Funnel Line, Glen Line China Mutual, Elder Dempster etc. Far East,
1989 Ocean withdrew from deep sea ship owning.
|Ellerman and Papayanni Line - Part of the Ellerman Group -Mediterrenean names ending in "ian". The City Line, Hall Line, Bucknals were bigger ships and traded to the Far East, South and East Africa etc. Ellerman Wilsons was based in Hull. Owned by Cunard for a while now in the Andrew Weir Group (Bank Line) and still exists.|
|Lamport and Holt. Traded to South America|
|In 1944 the company was purchased by the Vestey Group of companies which included Blue Star Line, Frederick Leyland & Co, and which also took over the Booth Line in 1946. In 1991 the last Lamport & Holt ship (CHURCHILL) transferred to Blue Star and became the ARGENTINA STAR, and the name of Lamport & Holt disappeared.|
|Pacific Steam Navigation Co. - Furness Withy group with Royal Mail Lines etc|
|East and west Coast of South America. Furness Withy took over the Royal Mail / PSNC group in 1965 . By 1984 the name of Pacific Steam Navigation Company disappeared into Furness Withy Shipping.|
|House Flags||Funnel||(Several people have given me information but some of these are from memory. Please let me know if I have made any mistakes or ommited any companies)|
|Booth SS. Co ltd. ("Maggie Booth's"). Traded
to South America, right up the Amazon to Manaus.
In 1946 the Booth Line was sold to the Vestey Group of companies and in 1975 all the ships went under Blue Star Ship Management Ltd and the Booth Line ceased to exist as a separate entity.
Traded to Burma. Specialised in troop carriers.
Owners of the ill fated "Derbyshire" - bulk carrier.
One of the few surviving Liverpool companies. Gas tankers and floating accomodation including prisons(!)
|Thos and Jno. Brocklebank.
Owned by Cunard. Origins in Whitehaven, Cumbria. Traded to India.
Traded to Spain, Portugal and Italy. Ships had Spanish names. Not a shipping company anymore but exists as a shipping and forwarding agency with close ties in Spain. Part of the Andrew Weir group (Bank Line).
|Elder Dempster Line.
Part of Ocean Fleets. West African run.
In 1951 Paddy Henderson's British & Burmese Steam Navigation Company was bought In 1965 the ownership of Elder Dempster passed to the Ocean Steamship Company (Blue Funnel Line). The passenger service to West Africa was terminated in 1974 and in 1989 Elder Dempster was sold to French owners.
|Canadian Pacific Railways.
In 1968 the house flag and funnel markings were drastically changed to a strange geometric design.
"Empress" passenger ships to Quebec and Montreal and the "Beaver Line" ships up the Great Lakes. The "Beaveroak" was converted to carry containers and ran from Liverpool to Quebec. In the 1970s and 1980s CPR was involved with tankers and bulkcarriers.
Today they are called Barber Canadian Pacific Ship Management Ltd and look after other people's ships.
|Thos and Jas Harrisons Ltd.
West Indies, Carribean, East Africa.
Vessels named after occupations e.g. "Author", "Huntsman", "Physician" etc.
Taken over by P&O/Nedlloyd in October 2000
|Cunard White Star S.S.Co.
Various takeovers in recent years. Cruise lines split off and retained.
In 1962 the company was titled plain Cunard Line Ltd but my first ship in 1966 was the "Arabia" (Ellerman's "Castillian" on charter) and we flew both house flags still.
Very large group of companies. Ended up owned in Hong Kong.
Two regular Liverpool traders I remember were the "Newfoundland" and the "Nova Scotia". One of them was bought by Kyrnow Shipping and became the "St Helena"
Part of Furness Withy, Mediterrenean run Names ending in "Prince"
|Shaw Savill Line. Passenger ships to Australia and New Zealand but also cargo ships some of which sailed from Liverpool.|
Owned by P&O. Mediterrenean traders.Ships had ancient Egyptian names like "Karnak" and "Memphis"
|Royal Mail Line.
South American trade.
Furness Withy took over the Royal Mail / PSNC group in 1965 . By 1984 the name disappeared into Furness Withy Shipping.
Named after members of the family ...........Larrinaga
They had a tanker in the 1960s
|Booker Line. (Booker McDonnell Group). "Booker
Venture" (I was 3rd Mate on her) and "Booker Vanguard".
Ran to British Guyana, Carribean. Owned the coasting companies Metcalf's
and Wm Coe. Now is in to food distribution and is connected to the "Iceland"
chain of shops. Well known for its sponsorship of the "Booker Prize
|Blue Star Line Formed in 1911 by the Vestey family to carry beef from S.America. At end of WWII purchased Lampbert abd Holt and Booth Line.. In 1998 sold to P&O Nedloyd. In 2003 the "American Star" was broken up - the last Blue Star ship|
|Manchester Liners -
Furness Withy. Traded from Manchester and Liverpool to the Great Lakes. Names starting with "Manchester"
|Palm Line. Owned by Lever Bros (Unilever). West Africa Trade. Ship's names ......Palm.|
|Uster Shipping Co "Head Line". Belfast company but loaded at Liverpool for Canada and Great Lakes. They merged wirh Donaldson Line in the 1960s I think. In 1968 I was third mate on Papayanni's "Arcadian" which was on charter to them. This may have been their last year of operation. Ships were named after N. Irish headlands e.g. "Fair Head", "Inishowen Head" etc.|
Here are some statistics for December 2002 from the British Chamber of Shipping:-
|Total Trading Fleet on UK Register|
|UK-Owned Trading Fleet By Registry|
|Register||Number||000 GT||000 Dwt|
|Other Dependent Territories||37||1,697||2,987|
|UK-Owned Fleet By Type|
|Vessel Type||Number||000 GT||000 Dwt|
|Other Dry Cargo||163||682||864|
|This website may be a bit nostalgic and perhaps
pessimistic but it is still possible to make a career at sea
The Chamber of Shipping's members, the Maritime and Coastguard Agency, other maritime organisations and charities are making a major effort with a programme of incentives that should encourage and assist young people to take up a career as a navigation or engineer cadet. Other incentives hopefully will encourage ship owners to register under the Red Ensign, hopefully without lowering any standards.
For the ratings the situation is not so good as most ships are manned by thirld world sailors and catering staff.
|Efallai mae'r wefan yma yn ddipyn
hiraethog ac yn drîst ond mae ô'n posibl byth i llanc wneud
yrfa ar y môr.
Y mae'r cwmniaid sydd ar ôl yn dal i cymryd prentisiaid - efallai ddim o dan y fflag Brydeinig.
Î'r forwyr ar dec â'r stiwards mae pethau'n ddim rhy ddâ hefo rhan mwyaf ô criwiau yn hogiau Ffilipîns a fellu.
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