Clutha River

redgreggie
13th June 2005, 19:43
i was on one Houlder bros. ship, a very murky Clutha River, the first ship i went on straight from training school back in 1964

Steve
13th June 2005, 20:34
Welcome reggie, are you trying to set a record for posting in every forum!!

redgreggie
13th June 2005, 20:49
well yes, before i burn myself out. I'm new to this kind of thing, i was in the merchant navy1964/5-1969/70,years get hazy as you get older. so i was only in for 5 years but they were very important and in the main very enjoyable years, i've been going through the companies that i worked for in the hope that i may perhaps find someone who i once knew. i can't find a heading for united baltic corp. and i don't know how to add a new one no doubt i'll find out one day........and then i'll have more to post........did you work for houlder bros? least i think that is the page that has been replied to........... i've been chatting that long that i've forgotten! nice to talk to you and............thanks for the reply.

julian anstis
13th June 2005, 22:26
Welcome aboard there Reggie,

All the help you need here if you have problems finding your way around....just shout if you need to know anything, post names in Crew Members if you are looking for old shipmates......never know who will crawl out the woodwork here.

Julian

jordiboy
13th June 2005, 22:32
Welcome Reggie. My first trip was on a Houlder vessel the mv Orerosa 1961

Shipbuilder
13th July 2005, 15:46
Hello, I sailed in the ore carrier JOYA MCCANCE in early 1962, my second ship and very comfortable compared with the old RHODESIA STAR which I had just come off. Horrible run though, Conakry and Pepel and one trip to Seven Islands, Canada. Dense fog most of the time with whistle blowing every few minutes. Docked early in the morning and loaded 15,000 long tons of iron ore and were back to sea again within two hours! Great captain & ship's company, Captain H.R. Neil and Chief Engineer L Parr who I met years later when he was on a Palm Line ship in Las Palmas and I was on WINDSOR CASTLE. Happy days.

john martin
22nd August 2005, 22:08
hi reg
i was on holmbury running to b.a.in may 55 and i can say we had a great time, i,ll never forget upriver to rosario.great crew great run.
cheers mate
john martin

R58484956
23rd August 2005, 15:54
Welcome Reggie to the site, you are now amongst the sea loving fraternity, whose comments I am sure you will enjoy.

wa002f0328
22nd September 2005, 19:16
Hello Reggie,
Welcome to the party, I was on the Rippingham Grange in 1959, what a trip the captain was Faulkener, it was a good trip overall went to N.Z. paid off in London Victoria Docks, mostly Geordie crowd, with a few scousers thrown in, yes good trip, cheers Bill

Ian Norman
3rd October 2005, 13:37
Hi reggie,
I was on the Clutha River in around 1964 as a deck apprentice. I seem to remember that murky was the correct word. I recall a VERY long voyage of about 12 months before we finally made it home.
All the best
Ian Norman

Ian Norman
3rd October 2005, 13:46
Hi There,
I am almost sure from what you say that we must have been on the Joya McCance at the same time. Possibily the same trip !! It was also my first trip as a deck apprentice. I remember Conakry well. The captain was Len Owen I seem to recall...he was a very hard man, but I later became great friends with him.He won the football, pools in a big way after he retired. The Joya McCance was not built well, and had a very weak bow section which always caused great concern in heavy weather. The centre of gravity was very low when fully loaded and the rolling action was like that of a ruler in a vice being pulled back as far as possible and then let go. Do you have any more memories ?
All the best
Ian Norman

Ian Norman
3rd October 2005, 14:14
Sorry Shipbuilder,
I sent you a thread about the Joya McCance, but forgot to mention, but I think the first mate was Mr. Milligan from Sunderland. He was pretty hard, but a fine man when you got to know him. He believed in putting deck apprentices with the bosun ( who was a ghastly man...just like a pirate ) to learn the ropes. In retrospect it was the best teaching I ever had in seamanship. I wonder if you recall any of these people ?
regards
Ian

non descript
23rd December 2005, 20:02
Please take a look at the thread "Looking for friends of Capt Edward Turner" which is here ( http://www.shipsnostalgia.com/showthread.php?t=3992) and I'm sure Tim would welcome our combined input. My guess is that we are looking for circa 1960-64

Tim Turner
20th January 2006, 20:21
Thank you Tonga, this is a very civilised and caring society you have here, unlike "out there". My sisters have not been "up in the attic" for me yet, when they do there may be some Houlder pics to come.

Dad worked for Houlders through ww2 up to the early '60's. He did Buenos Aires regularly and definately worked on the Clutha River, Oswestry Grange, Westbury - was there a Ledbury as well?

It seemed to be a very prosperous and exciting era for English shipping, but on e where i do remember there was a great deal of industrial unrest in the docks, that caused all sorts of problems.

Bye for the moment

Tim Turner

non descript
29th January 2006, 13:01
Tim,

Im glad that bits of information are coming through for you. There was indeed a LEDBURY, she was the re-named Alpha Vaal and bought in 1948, after the AYLESBURY had been sold by the Alexander Shipping Company Ltd. The Ledbury would have been relatively elderly in 1962 and coming towards the end of her commercial life, but Oswestry Grange was the third ship of that name, a Doxford of 13,390 deadweight and relatively modern She was built in 1952 and I remember seeing her in Buenos Aires in 1966, she was sold to Greeks in 1971, re-named Dinos and broken up in 1978



Tonga

non descript
26th May 2006, 11:28
Tim has kindly added a quality photo to the gallery this morning and the link is here in case it jogs anyone's memory of their times on this "Queen of the Crude"

http://www.shipsnostalgia.com/gallery/showphoto.php/photo/26220

Let's hope it brings some fresh leads.

Tonga

redgreggie
29th October 2006, 20:59
I now have a picture of this ship, I'm not sure but maybe I got it from this web-site, I did the ship a dis-service by referring to her as 'murky', she is in fact a very attractive ship, perhaps up there as the most attractive that I sailed on.

With it being my first ship, and having to learn all about going to sea, learning to walk again and everything else, must had played a big part in my forming the opinion that I did.

Hope I have corrected this perception.

Ray.(Thumb) (Thumb)

duquesa
29th October 2006, 21:34
Somebody mentioned the Holmbury in there somewhere. Would that have been with Capt. Wells? Was with him on the Imperial Transport. Also the Ledbury - I later ran across her 2/0 -Barrett-who had been on her 17years!! He left and got a job with British Rail in Harwich where he finished his time. Oddly, he was an uncle of another ex.Houlders man-Dave Horn, who also wound up at Harwich. In fact, come to think of it, there were quite a few Houlders chaps in Harwich at one time.
The Joya McCance - can't find my discharge book at present but I was 3/0 on her with Capt. Neil. Must have been about the time some of you guys are referring to but alas, my memory for names is not what it was. Had been with Neil some years previously as an apprentice on the Oreosa. This site sure brings back memories.

rt014c5788
19th September 2007, 19:56
I did my first trip on the Clutha River in 1955. As 17 year old, I travelled from Doncaster to Falmouth, via overnight train from Paddington. Never been to London before. Was waiting for a tube to Paddington, and let about six trains go through, and a porter told me I was on the circle line, and the train didn't display destinations. At Falmouth, The next morning at the Shipping Federation, I got in the wrong queue, and nearly signed on the 'British Oak'. What a start to a career. The Clutha River, as I remember her was a fantastic first trip, with a crew from all over the British Isles. Single cabins for everyone. She was chartered to Shell. First port of call was Curacao. After about three months in the Carabbean, and on the east coast of the States, we sailed for Rotterdam. During this crossing we had engine problems, and had to stop for periods for the engine to cool down. Word had it that they had been using the wrong lubrication oil and the engine was overheating. We all paid off in Rotterdam. I don't think I sailed with a better crew.

non descript
19th September 2007, 22:26
Ray,
She was just 3 years old when you joined her: Clutha River - built 1952, sold in 1966 and re-named Aries III and scrapped in 1970. - It was good to hear your comment that "I don't think I sailed with a better crew" (Applause)

redgreggie
6th June 2010, 20:29
just been thinking about my first day at sea, I'd never really seen a ship before other than ones that we saw at Tilbury across the river from the 'old' training school at Gravesend.

I was from Dronfield, a village in Derbyshire, not too far from Sheffield.

the whole first day was a really daunting experience to me, other than the 6 weeks at the training school I'd never been away from home before, so it was very testing.

I was the galley boy, I didn't really know what the job entailed, the cook's first words to me were along the lines of........'straight from training school?, forget everything they taught you'.

no encouragement like.....these are the jobs you'll have to do, you'll probably be run off your feet all day every day, but if we work as a team, doing what we ask you to do, and all should run well.
none of that, his man management skills were abysmal, too much to expect I guess.

well, even with his poor attitude towards me I still managed to put a few years in, it would have been so easy for me to pack it in after the Clutha River, or more specifically the cook on my first trip.
Glad I didn't as they were amongst the best years of my working life.






ray............in Batley.

Abbeywood.
7th June 2010, 15:07
Tim,

Im glad that bits of information are coming through for you. There was indeed a LEDBURY, she was the re-named Alpha Vaal and bought in 1948, after the AYLESBURY had been sold by the Alexander Shipping Company Ltd. The Ledbury would have been relatively elderly in 1962 and coming towards the end of her commercial life, but Oswestry Grange was the third ship of that name, a Doxford of 13,390 deadweight and relatively modern She was built in 1952 and I remember seeing her in Buenos Aires in 1966, she was sold to Greeks in 1971, re-named Dinos and broken up in 1978



Tonga

Did you know that the Oswestry Grange featured in the film 'Tiger Bay' !

ALAN TYLER
7th June 2010, 15:58
Hi Reggie, I started out as a galley boy in 1963 after leaving the "peanut factory" at Gravesend. I also ended up as a Ch/Cook with Houlders (never on the Clutha River), I was wondering if you remember the name of the Cook you sailed with!! I wouldn,t like to think we were all that nature. Before Houlders I did sail with some cooks that were "characters", mind you having said that I sailed with some great 2nd cooks with Houlders the best of which was Ray Brodigan a fine Yorkshireman and thats hard to say coming from the "Red Rose" county. Alan.

redgreggie
7th June 2010, 22:08
Hi Alan

no, I don't remember the name of the cook.
I remember there was a cook and a baker, but that's all.

I don't want to give a bad impression of cooks, he was I guess the poorest example, a good cook but no good for a 'first time galley boy'.

I sailed with many a fine cook, one of the best would have been the cook and the baker on the Federal Steam ship Dorset to New Zealand in 1966.

never sailed with a bad cook regarding his cooking skills, all dished up some of the finest food I've ever had.

loved galley work so that speaks volumes, also being straight from Gravesend dictates that on that ship I wasn't going to be 'up to scratch', but that's my point, he should have given me good grounding so that other cooks got a good un, they did get a good un, but it was no thanks to him.





ray.............in Batley.

raymond lima
13th June 2010, 14:42
i was on one Houlder bros. ship, a very murky Clutha River, the first ship i went on straight from training school back in 1964

I saied on her leaving Barry Christmas morning for the gulf to Whillemshaven. That was in 1958 and paid off in France in Aug. 1959. Good ship but crap crew. Was my last trip to sea.

Mal Belfast
6th March 2012, 22:24
I did my first trip on the Clutha River in 1955. As 17 year old, I travelled from Doncaster to Falmouth, via overnight train from Paddington. Never been to London before. Was waiting for a tube to Paddington, and let about six trains go through, and a porter told me I was on the circle line, and the train didn't display destinations. At Falmouth, The next morning at the Shipping Federation, I got in the wrong queue, and nearly signed on the 'British Oak'. What a start to a career. The Clutha River, as I remember her was a fantastic first trip, with a crew from all over the British Isles. Single cabins for everyone. She was chartered to Shell. First port of call was Curacao. After about three months in the Carabbean, and on the east coast of the States, we sailed for Rotterdam. During this crossing we had engine problems, and had to stop for periods for the engine to cool down. Word had it that they had been using the wrong lubrication oil and the engine was overheating. We all paid off in Rotterdam. I don't think I sailed with a better crew.

Hello rt014c5788 - I am trying to find out about the death of a friend's uncle, Robert Clarke, who, I believe had been a fireman/cleaner on the Clutha River in 1955. In fact Robert died in Curacao on 26.01.55 and is buried there. He was only 24 at the time. I was wondering if you remembered anything about this or about crew talking about Bobby's death when you joined? Any help greatly appreciated. Mal Belfast

DonCoates
26th November 2013, 19:57
i was on one Houlder bros. ship, a very murky Clutha River, the first ship i went on straight from training school back in 1964

DonCoates I sailed from the Tyne on12th June 1952 on the Clutha River on her Maiden Voyage. She was abeauty - one of the few ships to have all single berth cabins. We took a part cargo from Rotterdam to the nsouth of France then to the Gulf for our first full load. We left MENA-EL AHMADI and a week later ran aground at the entrance to theRed Sea (Djibouti) side at 3am.in the graveyard watch. We were doing about 16-18 knots and finshed up onthe rocks rightup to the fore part of the Bridge. Two salvage tugs from Aden and asmall greek tanker to th rescue but it stll took 27 days to refloat her. we eventually took her todry-dock in laSetzia.Italy and left her there.

Mal Belfast
1st December 2013, 15:02
Hello all
Since posting I have had an amazing contact from the son of Bobby Clarke's best friend on board the Clutha River. The friend was also a Belfast man called Billy Greg. Billy had written home about Bobby's deteriorating emotional health and this sadly concluded with Bobby committing suicide by drowning in Curacao. Painful memories. Bobby's family still keen to hear from anyone who might remember Bobby or Billy and Bobby's death.

Many thanks

Mal Belfast