silvertown services

mike 555
22nd September 2008, 17:01
hi,
i did a trip on the sugar importer,to cuba,jamaica and dominica.
and another trip to trinidad only.
the trinidad trip was for only five weeks.

has anyone else done a similar short trip,not counting around our coast and continental.(Thumb)

tiachapman
23rd September 2008, 07:53
hye mike ,yes, done a short trips to the same ports . back to silvertown discharge in about 2 days,then down river to load cement clinker for kingston,discharging at port royal,then a short run to salt lakes ,load sugar for london plastow wharf ,1958 sugar transporter. derek

djsmith
1st December 2008, 20:42
i did a trip on thesugar transporter1-6-77 to1-7-77 silvertown to port of spain and back to silvertown i remember being shocked at opening the hatches at gravesend it was pouring with rain at the time

Corrimeala
19th January 2009, 02:44
hye mike ,yes, done a short trips to the same ports . back to silvertown discharge in about 2 days,then down river to load cement clinker for kingston,discharging at port royal,then a short run to salt lakes ,load sugar for london plastow wharf ,1958 sugar transporter. derek

We used to tow you off Plaistow Wharf (Lyles Jetty), late 50's and early 60's. Silvertown Services tugs were really too small for the job but we had a good skipper. I used to stand above the towing hook with the "Cosh" to knock the pin out and do an emergency release if we got into trouble.

No ship to tug radio, all orders done by the ships whistle.

Mike

spongebob
19th January 2009, 04:44
Interesting to hear you talk of Silvertown Wharf and Plaistow.
My Grandfather lived in Silvertown Way in the late 1800's before he married and moved to Manor Park. Plaistow was where we caught the tube to the city when berthed at Royal Albert Docks.

Bob

tiachapman
19th January 2009, 09:27
if my memory serves me the pub outside of main gate was called the JUBILEE,can/ remember the name of the brew?? tiachapman

KYRENIA
19th January 2009, 11:23
Yes, the Jubilee was opposite Plaistow Wharf, think it was Ind Coope?
Lyle`s was where the syrup was made.They also made thier own brand of a golden coloured rum,Corona.
Further east at Silvertown was the raw sugar berth of Tate & Lyle, the pub opposite was the Railway, known locally as Cundy`s.
Cheers John.

tiachapman
19th January 2009, 12:47
thanks jhon that gets my brain cells active/when we due to arrive early tide bosun / lampy/myself -chippy found another pub open 6/am near some bridge within walking distance,then back to then back to the tate/lyle canteen,for breakfast,not just 1 egg/1956 still the menu but not the cost,derek

joebuckham
20th January 2009, 10:07
Yes, the Jubilee was opposite Plaistow Wharf, think it was Ind Coope?
Lyle`s was where the syrup was made.They also made thier own brand of a golden coloured rum,Corona.
Further east at Silvertown was the raw sugar berth of Tate & Lyle, the pub opposite was the Railway, known locally as Cundy`s.
Cheers John.
memory may be going but i thought the main sugar wharf was plaistow wharf and the barge and tug wharf was clyde wharf.
the rum, which i won't ever forget, was caroni and very nice too. there was another pub we used, just up the road, well frequented by the clyde wharf people, called the ram.

David JM
26th February 2009, 13:51
I seem to remember that Sugar Boats used to dock at Plaistow, but Crystal boats, being flat-bottomed, could tie up at Silvertown, and sit on the mud when the tidal Thames dropped.

Didn't we used to "drop" the Gateman at the wharf (10/- ?)after paying off to let the shared taxi through without any baggage checks? We'd hand over a baggage slip, folded over the "dropsy", dealt with by the cab driver. I wonder if he was on the make as well?

Rum? Remember Appleton's (or was it Applewhite's?) in Jamaica? The bottle of Coke was dearer than the bottle of rum. Christ, it was lethal..........

I recall anchoring off at Port of Spain, Trinidad, and watching the sugar being brought to the ship by barge - in sacks ! They were then split and poured into the hatches, just opened a crack, one at a time. Talk about having plenty of labour !

I also remember how pungent the semi-refined sugar smelt. After loading, and setting sail, the skipper would turn the ship through 360 degrees at the first opportunity to help purge the accommodation. Happy days.........

Cheers. David JM. Assistant Steward. Crystal Crown, Jewel, and Sugar Transporter

David Williams
2nd March 2009, 17:21
Interesting to hear you talk of Silvertown Wharf and Plaistow.
My Grandfather lived in Silvertown Way in the late 1800's before he married and moved to Manor Park. Plaistow was where we caught the tube to the city when berthed at Royal Albert Docks.

Bob

Hi Bob.
They knocked down the local Silver Roadways Depot,
built houses there,and thats where I live.Thats my
only connections with the "Sugar Boats",and my
claim to fame.

Dave Williams(R583900)

degsy
4th March 2009, 01:05
thanks jhon that gets my brain cells active/when we due to arrive early tide bosun / lampy/myself -chippy found another pub open 6/am near some bridge within walking distance,then back to then back to the tate/lyle canteen,for breakfast,not just 1 egg/1956 still the menu but not the cost,derek

Would that pub near the bridge have been the Tidal Basin Hotel. In 1970 it did breakfast's in the lounge, if my memory is right. I remember the Jubilee.

Corrimeala
4th March 2009, 02:37
memory may be going but i thought the main sugar wharf was plaistow wharf and the barge and tug wharf was clyde wharf.
the rum, which i won't ever forget, was caroni and very nice too. there was another pub we used, just up the road, well frequented by the clyde wharf people, called the ram.

Clyde Wharf was the wharf just up from Lyles. Silvertown Services Lighterage did all of their barge and tug repairs there. Originally this work was all done at Tate's but they moved up to Clyde Wharf about 1961.

When I worked for Silvertown Services Lighterage most of the sugar ships berthed either at Sammuel Williams Jetty at Dagenham or at Cory's Wharf at Erith. The raw sugar was then unloaded into our barges and was towed either to Tate's or to Lyle's. I believe Plaistow Wharf was the correct name for Lyles Wharf but the two wharfs were always known to us lightermen as just Tate's or Lyle's.

Lyle's had the best canteen, nicer food but my aunt worked in Tate's canteen and I could always get a better feed there!

joebuckham
6th March 2009, 20:06
Clyde Wharf was the wharf just up from Lyles. Silvertown Services Lighterage did all of their barge and tug repairs there. Originally this work was all done at Tate's but they moved up to Clyde Wharf about 1961.

When I worked for Silvertown Services Lighterage most of the sugar ships berthed either at Sammuel Williams Jetty at Dagenham or at Cory's Wharf at Erith. The raw sugar was then unloaded into our barges and was towed either to Tate's or to Lyle's. I believe Plaistow Wharf was the correct name for Lyles Wharf but the two wharfs were always known to us lightermen as just Tate's or Lyle's.

Lyle's had the best canteen, nicer food but my aunt worked in Tate's canteen and I could always get a better feed there!

hi corrimeala
had a senior citizens moment in my previous post on this thread, plaistow was indeed the wharf for lyles, where the syrup was produced, and was serviced by barges. i believe the three original ships sugar producer, refiner and transporter ran there in the fifties.
the thames refinery wharf was known in the ships as thames, but the thames wharf, in no way connected with t & l, lies further upstream

came across this while googling courtesy the share gallery;
Tate & Lyle's interest in the lighterage of raw and refined sugar started in October 1938 with the formation of the Silvertown Services Limited, shipping was not developed until 1950, when three steamships were purchased. Management of these ships, named SUGAR PRODUCER, SUGAR TRANSPORTER and SUGAR REFINER, was entrusted initially to Messrs. R. S. Dalgliesh & Company Limited of Newcastle, until January 1953, when Kentships Limited became Managers, and following this, later in the year, the ships were traded direct from the West Indies to a new wharf at Plaistow Refinery, London.

In 1951, a year after the Group purchased its first ship, a new Company was registered called Sugar Line Limited, as a joint venture of Tate & Lyle, the United Molasses Company and the West Indies Sugar Company Limited. The purpose of this Company was to run a fleet of larger bulk carriers, which, although too large to use the Plaistow jetty, were small enough to use wharves at Liverpool, Greenock, Montreal and Toronto, and the first ship was named CRYSTAL CUBE.

Silvertown Services Shipping Limited was formed in 1956 to acquire the foreign-going fleet from Silvertown Services Limited and to replace the steamships with modern bulk carriers, and Kentships Limited then continued their activities as Chartering Brokers for Tate & Lyle and as Agents.

Over the next few years the fleet of SUGAR pre-fixed ships operated by Silvertown Services Shipping Limited, and the fleet of CRYSTAL pre-fixed ships managed by Athel Line Limited expanded, until in late 1961 the two fleets were combined under the title of Sugar Line Limited and operated from the Company's premises at Clyde Wharf, Silvertown, E. 16.

Lescudjack
7th March 2009, 12:39
I was with Tate and Lyles from 1961 until the end of 1963 - mainly on the Sugar Exporter, Chrystal Sapphire and Crystal Bell and remember those old discharge berths. What comes to mind from that time was that Tate and Lyles were continually dividing their assets up and changing their company name and address. Something I believe to do with the politics of the day and fears that the labour party might get in and nationalise the sugar industry. The fresh paint on the funnel hardly had time to dry before it was changed again.

Sevillano
30th August 2009, 13:30
Hello everybody. I found this site when searching for information on Silvertown Services. My father was a bosun lighterman with this firm (having served his apprenticeship with his elder brother Frank) pretty well from its inception and spent all his working life there. I was wondering whether anybody (the younger ones, maybe) on this thread knew him. His name was Hugh Robert Dawson, known as Bob at work. As far as I recall he was based at the Royal Albert Dock and Bill Twinn (spelling?) was one of his gang. If this isn't what this forum is for, I apologize.

Corrimeala
31st August 2009, 04:47
Hello everybody. I found this site when searching for information on Silvertown Services. My father was a bosun lighterman with this firm (having served his apprenticeship with his elder brother Frank) pretty well from its inception and spent all his working life there. I was wondering whether anybody (the younger ones, maybe) on this thread knew him. His name was Hugh Robert Dawson, known as Bob at work. As far as I recall he was based at the Royal Albert Dock and Bill Twinn (spelling?) was one of his gang. If this isn't what this forum is for, I apologize.

Hi There,

If your father was a bosun for Silvertown Services it would have been at Tate's wharf at Silvertown, which although close to the Albert Dock, was not actually in the dock but on the River Thames.

Bill Twin was one of the foreman at Tate's, dockers and stevedores had gangs - lightermen had watches or shift's. Your Dad would have been a Lighterman who was working at Tate's as a bosun. Lightermen could be tug skippers, tug mates, journeymen lightermen all sorts of things. Our trade was lighterman but we could be employed in all sorts of sub jobs.

A bosun usually worked at one wharf constantly - in your Dad's case it would have been Tate's either supervising the unloading of the barges that were bringing raw sugar to Tate's or supervising the loading of refined sugar into barges, that would then be taken by lighterman to ships, where it would have been exported all over the World.

I can remember your Dad's name but I can't put a face to the name. I worked for Silvertown for the first 3 years of my apprenticeship, from the beginning of 1959 until 62 then on and off fairly regularly for the next 5 years. I knew Bill Twinn really well and Albert Beasly who was another of the bosuns at Tate's.

Is your father still alive? Most of the bosuns were 30+, so I would guess he would be in his eighties now.

Sevillano
31st August 2009, 12:46
Thanks Corrimeala for the response and information. You must be right about where he carried out his work and the nature of the work. He used to work 24 hour shifts with 48 hours off. The time off sounded good except that he had a long way to travel. When the blitz started in earnest we moved out of the East End (Stepney) to Feltham in a futile attempt to avoid the bombing, so it took him hours to get to and from work. Unfortunately, he's no longer alive (he would have been 101 this year!) He retired when containerisation began to make lighterage a dying trade, or at least that is how I understood it. I'm sure you'll put me right on that score if I'm mistaken. Thanks again for taking the trouble to reply.

E.Martin
31st August 2009, 13:50
hi,
i did a trip on the sugar importer,to cuba,jamaica and dominica.
and another trip to trinidad only.
the trinidad trip was for only five weeks.

has anyone else done a similar short trip,not counting around our coast and continental.(Thumb)

In 1953 I got 11 discharges in 8 months,bringing rolls of newspaper from Canada,Newfoundland,Finland,Sweden,discharging London or Salford always sailed lightship from the UK,ships name Isaac Carter,they were managed by Runcimans,
Getting on to sugar have loaded sugar from Cuba,which was brought aboard in sacks which were bled into the holds(Thousands of Bee's everywhere)we discharged the sugar at Bremerhavan where the sugar was put back into sacks before taken ashore,This was while on the Eden (Royal Mail).

philtwin86
27th October 2009, 21:49
Hello,

I have been doing some family research recently and happened to find your post in which you mentioned a Bill (William) Twin, from chatting to my father he has confirmed that his uncle was called Bill. Bill worked on the thames along with his brother Reg @ Tate & lyle, Silvertown, North Woolwich. I believe both were lightermen. Would this be the Bill you knew ?
My fathers, father John (Jack) Twin worked for the white star company (or white line) within the royal docks complex around the same time. I Dont suppose you knew these chaps too did you ? as information about them is hard to come by !

Kind Regards

Phil Twin (Bill Twin's Great Nephew)

Hi There,

If your father was a bosun for Silvertown Services it would have been at Tate's wharf at Silvertown, which although close to the Albert Dock, was not actually in the dock but on the River Thames.

Bill Twin was one of the foreman at Tate's, dockers and stevedores had gangs - lightermen had watches or shift's. Your Dad would have been a Lighterman who was working at Tate's as a bosun. Lightermen could be tug skippers, tug mates, journeymen lightermen all sorts of things. Our trade was lighterman but we could be employed in all sorts of sub jobs.

A bosun usually worked at one wharf constantly - in your Dad's case it would have been Tate's either supervising the unloading of the barges that were bringing raw sugar to Tate's or supervising the loading of refined sugar into barges, that would then be taken by lighterman to ships, where it would have been exported all over the World.

I can remember your Dad's name but I can't put a face to the name. I worked for Silvertown for the first 3 years of my apprenticeship, from the beginning of 1959 until 62 then on and off fairly regularly for the next 5 years. I knew Bill Twinn really well and Albert Beasly who was another of the bosuns at Tate's.

Is your father still alive? Most of the bosuns were 30+, so I would guess he would be in his eighties now.

Corrimeala
27th October 2009, 23:03
Hello,

I have been doing some family research recently and happened to find your post in which you mentioned a Bill (William) Twin, from chatting to my father he has confirmed that his uncle was called Bill. Bill worked on the thames along with his brother Reg @ Tate & lyle, Silvertown, North Woolwich. I believe both were lightermen. Would this be the Bill you knew ?
My fathers, father John (Jack) Twin worked for the white star company (or white line) within the royal docks complex around the same time. I Dont suppose you knew these chaps too did you ? as information about them is hard to come by !

Kind Regards

Phil Twin (Bill Twin's Great Nephew)

Yes, I knew both Bill Twinn and Reg - I didn't know there father however. I knew Bill a lot more than Reg as Bill was in effect the foreman I worked for on many occasions. He wasn't a bad bloke as foremen lightermen go (praise indeed). We saw it as our role in life to "obtain" as much overtime as possible, whereas it was Bill's job to prevent us blowing the wages costs. He was known on occasions to turn a blind eye to the odd extra hour.

deanreeve
23rd March 2010, 16:38
Hello
I am new to this thread and am researching Caroni Rum when it was imported by Tate & Lyle. I have 2 full bottles and am putting together a history of this rum and how it got here from Trinidad. Has any of the members any memories relating to drinking, transporting or having anything to do with the rum during the 40s or 50s. You can see the details on www.therumquest.co.uk

Regards Dean Reeve