25th March 2008, 18:40
I was relayed a tale last trip from an old P&O hand who'd apparently heard it from a bank line wallah.
Apparently a Bank boat had run itself up a reef somewhere in the South Pacific, but was in reasonable condition. Rather than fork out for a salvage tug(s) to tow her off, Weirs bought a local fishing boat of sufficient size, made fast a wire (or chain) and then sank it a point of the reef.
When the tide was right said Bank boat then began to heave away on the chain/wire and used the sunken boat as an anchor to drag itself off the reef.
Is there any truth in this tale?
25th March 2008, 19:15
Could it have been the Maplebank?
"Went aground on Makongai Reef 27-11-75 in a postion 17.30S 178.58E during a voyage from Suva to Lambasa, but was refloated 04-12-75." (Marine News January 1976) Regards, Alan.
28th March 2008, 22:29
I was on the Hollybank the other side of Fiji at the Labassa anchorage loading sugar at the time the Maplebank went aground. I remember there being a panic that we where to be sent to tow her off. In the end we didn't go and I don't know how she got off the reef. I only know that she was successfully refloated.
31st March 2008, 20:52
If memory serves me correctly then I sailed with you. Joined in New Orleans, sailed to NZ up to Fiji for a sugar run home to Liverpool.
Struggling to recall names. Captain was Brodie, I think.
Do you remember anyone else.
31st March 2008, 21:04
Thats right, joined in New Orleans down to Kiwi with general then loaded bulk sugar in Fiji for Liverpool. Captain Angus Brodie C/O Tony Spencer, 2/0 Ron Riley 3/0 John Ward the two other Cadets where Karl Palmer and Tim Clinch.
Unusaul for Bank Line as it was only a 3.5 month trip.
Whats the name behind Cadet?
31st March 2008, 21:07
Cadet.... Tim Clinch.
Recall the names now... thanks for the reminder
31st March 2008, 21:09
Here is a case in point in regards to filling out a decent Profile. Cadet Who???
31st March 2008, 22:12
Surely the mystery is all part of the fun?
20th September 2008, 00:52
Yep, its true, that's how she was refloated. In the Bankline house magazine there was a detailed description of the salvage. Apparently the nearest inhabited island was a leper colony!.
4th November 2008, 22:37
I sailed with John Ward too on the Hollybank 1977 - redsea trip I recall