Captain G J Whitfield - Union Castle Mail Steamship Co. Ltd

Shipbuilder
4th November 2010, 20:27
A number of years ago, I came a cross a book published in 1939 and written by Captain G. J. Whitfield, who was, at that time, in command of the Union-Castle liner ARUNDEL CASTLE. The book only cost a few pence and I have read it several times, never tiring of it. Captain Whitfield came across as a very humane, pleasant and efficient seaman of the old school who lived a most adventurous life at sea for over 50 years in both sail and steam.

The ARUNDEL CASTLE was only seven years gone to scrap when I first walked the decks of my first Union-Castle liner, TRANSVAAL CASTLE, in 1965. Even so, some of the old stories related by Captain Whitfield in his book were still doing the rounds, although by then, his name had disappeared as the originator of the yarns.

I have looked through the Union-Castle Chronicles and other very extensive books and writings on the history of the Union-Castle Line, but drawn a complete blank on Captain Whitfield. He does not seem to be mentioned anywhere!

What became of him? Did he survive World War II and retire in peace, or did he die with his boots on at sea aboard a Castle liner.

Hoping someone can cast some light on his final chapter.

Bob

persimmon
16th February 2011, 17:18
Hi Bob, I have reason to believe my g grandfather Elijah Julier/Julian a ships officer may have been on the shipping line you mention IE union castle mail steamships, possibly the "Walmer Castle" to Durban, S.Africa to Southampton in 1902 or before? he was born in 1841 in caister, Norfolk & died 1925 in Dover aged 84, a grand old age for this type of life! Any information on his sealife would be most welcome! Roger Julien

joller6
3rd March 2011, 20:16
Hi
Dont know if this will be of any assistance!
Cheers

The Union-Castle Mail Steamship Co. Ltd
BT29/1379/23/P5


Shipís Name
Official Number
When Built
Tonnage
Sq Feet

Arundel Castle
145175
1919
19029
5980

Date of Departure
Masterís Name
Port of Departure
Where Bound
Passengers

9 June 1933 Capt G Whitfield
Southampton
South Africa
290

http://www.slgnet.co.uk/datlen/1933_Jun_09_Miss_M_R_Datlen_P5.jpg

KenLin39
3rd March 2011, 21:18
Hi Bob, I have reason to believe my g grandfather Elijah Julier/Julian a ships officer may have been on the shipping line you mention IE union castle mail steamships, possibly the "Walmer Castle" to Durban, S.Africa to Southampton in 1902 or before? he was born in 1841 in caister, Norfolk & died 1925 in Dover aged 84, a grand old age for this type of life! Any information on his sealife would be most welcome! Roger Julien

Hello Roger. You may find something of interest by going into the site below. Rgds. Ken.

http://www.unioncastlestaffregister.co.uk/

Shipbuilder
5th March 2011, 19:42
Not looked here for a while. Thanks for replies. I know most details of Captain Whitfield's 50 years at sea. I was just wondering what hapenned to him. At the outbreak of WWII, he was in command of ARUNDEL CASTLE, but must have been on the brink of retirement.
Bob