Classic liners: Working alleyways

johno2449
1st April 2011, 17:38
I bought "Down the Burma Road"several years ago. The book is sub-titled "Work and Leisure for the Below-Deck Crew of the Queen Mary (1947-1967)". So if the Queen Mary's working alleyway was nicknamed "The Burma Road" what about the Queen Elizabeth? Or other Cunarders? Or other major British liners?
My late dad was mostly with the QE but also sailed in the QM and other Cunarders. I can only remember him referring to the working alleyway by its official name rather than by nickname.

R58484956
1st April 2011, 18:05
Having spent many years yarning and watching the world go by on the QE (1)
working alleyway, I never heard it called anything but "working alleyway"

Jeff Taylor
1st April 2011, 18:32
...and of course the working alleyways on the two original Queens were on opposite sides of the ships--can't remember which was port and which starboard, but they were planned that way in case both were in port at the same time, presumably at the same finger pier.

Pat Kennedy
1st April 2011, 19:43
In most Liverpool liners the working alleyway was called 'Scotland Rd' after a legendary major road (A59) in Liverpool which had a pub on virtually every corner, and which ran right through the areas of Liverpool and Bootle which were heavily populated by seamen and dockers.
Pat

R396040
1st April 2011, 20:14
I remember this was a general nickname for the working alleyway on passenger ships in the fifties if my memory is correct. I sailed on P&O,Orient,Union Castle & Shaw Savill befote joining Cunard. Probably from ear'ier
wartime lads

captainjohn
1st April 2011, 20:46
On the American-flag passenger ships on which I sailed, it was usually referred to as "Broadway".

donald h
1st April 2011, 22:24
When I joined the RN in the early 1970s, the main internal passageway onboard warships (certainly from frigate size upwards) tended to be traditionally known as the Burma Road. This had obviously been the "norm" for many years but seemed to be a tradition which was in fast decline as the older ratings completed their service and left the Navy.
regards, Donald

TonyAllen
2nd April 2011, 00:04
What was the definition of a glory hole stewards job.I only worked bye on the Parthia so never got to sail on a Cunarder, next was a blue star Tony

len mazza
2nd April 2011, 06:20
On the P@O/Orient Line ships I was on it was always known as the Burma Road.Not really sure about this,but think the main fore and aft aisle in the Saloon's were referred to as the B/Road.




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ecb
2nd April 2011, 07:55
Glory Hole Steward
His job was taking care of the Catering Staff's accomadation,
ecb

Dickyboy
2nd April 2011, 10:21
It was called the Burmah Road on the Andes. By me at least. As I recall on most passenger ships I was on, some people called it the Working Alleyway, and others called it the Burmah Road. Both terms were commonly used on most ships.
The Working Alleyway on the Queen Mary seemed to go on for ever, dissapearing into the distance. At the bottom of the stairs at the after end was the catering staff bar, and up the stairs was the crew bar, which was also the after mooring space. A cold and draughty place, with open fairleads, winches, and mooring bitts etc.

billyboy
2nd April 2011, 11:18
I once sailed with a guy who had worked the Queen mary. He reckoned he had the best job as one of the Alleyway sweepers. Sweep the length one way, smoko, suicide watch aft, smoko then sweep alleyway the opposite way.

Dickyboy
2nd April 2011, 11:54
I once sailed with a guy who had worked the Queen mary. He reckoned he had the best job as one of the Alleyway sweepers. Sweep the length one way, smoko, suicide watch aft, smoko then sweep alleyway the opposite way.
I remember the suicide watch. On the After Docking Bridge. I never did it, being a boy rating. Very exposed as I recall, just canvas dodgers around it, and exposed to all weathers. We used to wash down the working alleyway nightly in 1967. In those days there was a two watch system, a 13 hr day watch and an 11 hr night one. On Nights it was mostly wash downs, working alleyway, and open decks from the funnels down. I'd reached the exalted heights of SOS by then. :o

billyboy
2nd April 2011, 11:58
Yes i have heard that the after docking bridge was no place to be in foul weather

James_C
2nd April 2011, 12:35
Dickyboy,
Did you sail with a deck boy by the name of David Shopland on the QM in 67?

billmaca
2nd April 2011, 15:01
If I recall right (grey cells going a bit)there was a photo taken of the working alley on the QM as she did a bit too quick change of course at speed(ice I think was the reason)showing all the trolleys crew etc all along one corner, quite a few folk got hurt. this was in 60/61

hughesy
2nd April 2011, 15:29
"Like throwing a saugage, up a working alleyway"
We all know what this means?

all the best
Hughesy

rstimaru
2nd April 2011, 16:34
The Queen Mary,s Working alleyway was on the portside so the Queen Elizabeth was on the starboard. I know i was hospital attendent on both the hospit was forward and our cabins aft in isolation hospital. So we walk them every day Bob

R396040
2nd April 2011, 18:17
Burma Road/working alleyway as I said in earlier entry on this theme. Do recall though back in those days ,the fifties each winger/waiter had a morning scrubout out first thing on rising before passenger breakfas.ts/ Lots of said alleyways in older liners had wooden decks and scrub outs meant just that,hands & knees job .bucket of water a chunk of soap and hand scrubber/
No pansy mops in those days but quite often housemaids knee.
Stu

Dickyboy
3rd April 2011, 08:08
Dickyboy,
Did you sail with a deck boy by the name of David Shopland on the QM in 67?
Sorry, I don't recall him.
I was only on the QM then for two or three weeks. Did a trip down to Las Palmas and back, then went over to NY and flew out from there to Bermuda to join the Franconia. I joined her on 22/3/67 and signed off on 4/4/67.
I was Deck/Bridge Boy in her in 1964.

alan ward
12th October 2011, 15:45
Go and have a look at a website called Enclopedia Titanica,the crew accomodations main alleyway was known as Scotland Road as well on her

PJG1412
13th October 2011, 09:48
Don't remember what the working alleyway was known as on the Stirling Castle, but remember half way along was a "jamjar" hanging on abit of string for drinking from the fresh water station, and was used by everyone !!! (Night)

Alex Salmond
13th October 2011, 11:14
I once sailed with a guy who had worked the Queen mary. He reckoned he had the best job as one of the Alleyway sweepers. Sweep the length one way, smoko, suicide watch aft, smoko then sweep alleyway the opposite way.

Wasnt there some great jobs on the old Passie boats my first trip to sea was on the RMS Andes and my job was to do the toast for the Saloons brekkie I had 10 toasters all going at the same time had it boxed off in no time,and then after that I spent the whole day as lift boy working the passengers lift what a cruisey job ,but my mate Derby had the best job on the Orsova he got the nod to be 2nd Leckys mate and all they did all day was wheel a wee barrow full of bulbs round the Passengers accomodation changing broken bulbs !!(and chatting up the young birds)
As for Burma roads ,the Act 7 had two that ran the length of the ship and we always called them the Burma roads..

LouisB
13th October 2011, 12:04
The working alleyway on all larger RFA's was always known as the 'Burma Road' - certainly during the years I was there, 1965/1976. I had the feeling it had RN connetations as the remaining wartime RFA tonnage had the same nomenclature applied to vessels with working alleyways.

Probably changed to something technical now?


LouisB

Pat Kennedy
13th October 2011, 19:26
Wasnt there some great jobs on the old Passie boats my first trip to sea was on the RMS Andes and my job was to do the toast for the Saloons brekkie I had 10 toasters all going at the same time had it boxed off in no time,and then after that I spent the whole day as lift boy working the passengers lift what a cruisey job ,but my mate Derby had the best job on the Orsova he got the nod to be 2nd Leckys mate and all they did all day was wheel a wee barrow full of bulbs round the Passengers accomodation changing broken bulbs !!(and chatting up the young birds)
As for Burma roads ,the Act 7 had two that ran the length of the ship and we always called them the Burma roads..
Alex,
I was on the Andes, amd there were some on there who paid others to do their regular job while they ran a bookie's or some other racket. same on that Empress of Britain. One guy used to rent out dirty books and magazines, while paying another steward to do his real job. Another used to clean and press tuxedos all day long, paying another steward to cover his real job. Everything was for sale, everyone was on the make.
We always paid a winger for passenger dinners because the crew galley served garbage. Even the cooks in the crew galley got passenger food because they wouldn't eat their own product.
I was happy to get back to general cargo ships away from all the spivs and chancers.
Regards,
Pat

Alex Salmond
14th October 2011, 09:59
Alex,
I was on the Andes, amd there were some on there who paid others to do their regular job while they ran a bookie's or some other racket. same on that Empress of Britain. One guy used to rent out dirty books and magazines, while paying another steward to do his real job. Another used to clean and press tuxedos all day long, paying another steward to cover his real job. Everything was for sale, everyone was on the make.
We always paid a winger for passenger dinners because the crew galley served garbage. Even the cooks in the crew galley got passenger food because they wouldn't eat their own product.
I was happy to get back to general cargo ships away from all the spivs and chancers.
Regards,
Pat

Ye Pat your right there Pal there were some dodgy characters on there and what an eye opener for a young green Jock of 16 years to join there first trip ,the first time we got back to Southampton I phoned home Dad asked me how things were going and i told him great Dad but half the stewards are poofs he nearly choked and wanted me to come home I had to tell him they had there own thing going and didnt bother us boys ,what a shocker one night though ,it was sods opera in the Pig ,great fun I went for a pee and one of the Queens in full drag came to the urinal next to me hitched up his gown and started peeing looked at me and said "Hello sweetie"(EEK) Man I was out of there sharpish,got a photo of me on there in my gallery,I enjoyed my time on there but was glad to get off after two trips.Someone was asking what a gloryhole steward was we had one on there called Stan ,an old Queen from way back who used to bring us cups of tea in the morning to wake us up ,and your right about the Crew galley food it was pretty bad the galley was n the focsle eh?