Ben line ship in New Zealand waters

DURANGO
20th October 2011, 11:36
I well remember being in one of the smaller ports in New Zealand back in 1959 I was a boy rating in the Wellington Star and laying alongside was a heavy lift Ben line ship , I have often wondered if she was there on a charter could any Ben line seaman confirm that they did indeed charter ships out I can no longer remember her name best regards Dave .

Tom S
20th October 2011, 16:00
The heavy lift ship Benledi was down in New Zealand in 1959 she loaded a full cargo for Liverpool The Captain at the time was a namesake of mine T Sutherland
she was on her way back from Christmas Island
TomS

DURANGO
21st October 2011, 07:31
The heavy lift ship Benledi was down in New Zealand in 1959 she loaded a full cargo for Liverpool The Captain at the time was a namesake of mine T Sutherland
she was on her way back from Christmas Island
TomS Thanks for that Tom I just looked her up she was built as Empire Admiral ,what brought it back to me in the first place was a photo I saw on here of the old Empire Wallace showing her as the Benarty truth is the way they where built she could most likely have been going to this day best regards Dave .

jg grant
22nd October 2011, 10:15
Hi, saw the Benledi in London early sixties loading jet aircraft for, Singapore, Hong Kong? regards Ronnie

Ben Boat Jim
22nd October 2011, 17:56
I was "Peggy" on the "Benalbanach" in 1956 one of four Ben Line heavy lift ships. All rivetted including accomodation. The mast shrouds were solid steel . My first ship. and remember standing on the main deck line, with my chin resting on the bulwark capping
An unforgettable experience.
Regards Jim Morrison

Tom S
22nd October 2011, 19:17
I was Cadet on the same Benalbanach when they fitted the new tween deck in Leith we then went to Grangemouth and toppled one of the shoreside cranes during sailing as you say they were built to last everything was double plated
Tom S

roymuir
22nd October 2011, 20:19
Benwyis also ran to New Zealand on a Scales charter to load wool. I have a photo of her on the Otago Harbour, heading to Dunedin.
Regards, Roy.

DURANGO
23rd October 2011, 08:03
I was never with the Ben line, fine looking and well kept ships sorely missed by all of us ,as are all our other great shipping companys but I did sail in a few Blue funnel ships but never came across one of them in New Zealand I know they where regular on the Aussie coast but again they are now just a distant memory along with all the rest best regards to all hands and many thanks for the replies to my question Dave .

munroejah
5th November 2011, 05:23
(Bounce)Benwyis also ran to New Zealand on a Scales charter to load wool. I have a photo of her on the Otago Harbour, heading to Dunedin.
Regards, Roy.

Roy,

I was cadet on the Benwyvis on that charter. From memory we were on a time charter in 1959 from Japan. We departed light ship and slow steamed to Bluff. It took us 42 days. Part loaded in Bluff and then topped off in Dunedin. Sailed to Antwerp and flew home. Shipped out again from Hull nine days later for a second charter. I am sure complete same crew signed back on for the trip which, if I remember was part load Wellington followed by a top off in Napier.(B
Roy, if there is any way I could get a copy of that photo I would be obliged,

John.

munroejah
5th November 2011, 06:13
Hi, saw the Benledi in London early sixties loading jet aircraft for, Singapore, Hong Kong? regards Ronnie

Ronnie,
I am amazed that at least three of the four heavy lifters(Benwyvis,Benarty,Benalbanach and Benledi) were involved in similar voyage/cargo duties. Almost a mirror image in some cases I suspect. Whilst serving on the Benwyvis for three and a half years she went to Christmas Island in 1957 (between atom bomb tests) with a full load for the army. - Apparently so did the Benledi in 1959. The Wyvis also loaded aircraft, some packed and some broken down which we discharged in Seletar (Singapore Island). So also apparently, did the Benledi in the early sixties. The heavy lifters were GREAT ships in every way. After the Benwyvis I got my second mates ticket and went back on the Benarty as third mate with a load for for the Far East terminating in Hong Kong. After discharge she was sold for scrap and we flew home. John

munroejah
5th November 2011, 06:35
(Bounce)Benwyis also ran to New Zealand on a Scales charter to load wool. I have a photo of her on the Otago Harbour, heading to Dunedin.
Regards, Roy.

Roy,

I was cadet on the Benwyvis on that charter. From memory we were on a time charter in 1959 from Japan. We departed light ship and slow steamed to Bluff. It took us 42 days. Part loaded in Bluff and then topped off in Dunedin. Sailed to Antwerp and flew home. Shipped out again from Hull nine days later for a second charter. I am sure complete same crew signed back on for the trip which, if I remember was part load Wellington followed by a top off in Napier.(B
Roy, if there is any way I could get a copy of that photo I would be obliged,

John.

DURANGO
5th November 2011, 09:04
(Bounce)

Roy,

I was cadet on the Benwyvis on that charter. From memory we were on a time charter in 1959 from Japan. We departed light ship and slow steamed to Bluff. It took us 42 days. Part loaded in Bluff and then topped off in Dunedin. Sailed to Antwerp and flew home. Shipped out again from Hull nine days later for a second charter. I am sure complete same crew signed back on for the trip which, if I remember was part load Wellington followed by a top off in Napier.(B
Roy, if there is any way I could get a copy of that photo I would be obliged,

John. I would think that was the voyage I saw her in Dunedin I was a boy in the Wellington Star at the time I,m guesing here but I would think it would have been early 1959 around about april may time but without looking through my book I cant be exact I to would like to see the photo if there is a chance best regards Dave .

george r
21st February 2013, 10:59
I well remember being in one of the smaller ports in New Zealand back in 1959 I was a boy rating in the Wellington Star and laying alongside was a heavy lift Ben line ship , I have often wondered if she was there on a charter could any Ben line seaman confirm that they did indeed charter ships out I can no longer remember her name best regards Dave .
i signed on 25/4/59 liverpool to antwerp back to liverpool charter for irven oil 7tugs st johns new brunswick then coal sydney cape britten to montreal 2 months through panama to cienfugas cuba sugar for
japan 4 ports then philapines 5 ports on to malasia and singapore next columbo now sri lanka headed home via suez paid off liverpool 29/12/59

ernhelenbarrett
26th February 2013, 00:25
Benalbanach was my first ship as deck boy straight from the Dolphin,I joined her on 1st December 1947 in Tilbury when she was the Empire Athelstan and Ben Line had just bought her from Paddy Hendersons, we went to Antwerp where the name was changed to Benalbanach and the accommodation was changed as her original crew were Paddy Henderson non Uk. Loaded locomotives for the far east but Ben Line reckoned the work on deck was a bit hard for Deck Boys as Bulwarks were 8 feet high and hatch coamings 6 feet and the 120 ton jumbos a bit much for a tich like me so I was transferred to
Bendoran (ex Sam Boat) in London then Benvrackie (another Sam Boat)
finally ended up doing 4 years on Bencruachan.
Ern Barrett

george r
28th February 2013, 10:30
[QUOTE=munroejah;549454](Bounce)

Roy,

I was cadet on the Benwyvis on that charter. From memory we were on a time charter in 1959 from Japan. We departed light ship and slow steamed to Bluff. It took us 42 days. Part loaded in Bluff and then topped off in Dunedin. Sailed to Antwerp and flew home. Shipped out again from Hull nine days later for a second charter. I am sure complete same crew signed back on for the trip which, if I remember was part load Wellington followed by a top off in Napier.(B
Roy, if there is any way I could get a copy of that photo I would be obliged,
was george rennie the bosun on the benwyvis at that time he was my uncle he died from a heart attach on his way to rejoin her 1965 i was with the benline from 1956-60 then bowaters till 1963 . my other uncle was david meikle all his life with benline died indian.
.george r

john fraser
28th February 2013, 15:09
Regarding the Ben Line ships going to New Zealnd.I think it was one voyage a year, I was told that E.G. Thomson(Edward) had interests in sheep farms in N.Z.and part of the homeward cargo was wool.

wheelerclan
1st March 2013, 05:47
According to the book "The Ships that serve NZ " all four of the heavy lifters owned by Ben Line came to NZ between 1958 & 1961 on charter to local co Scales Line & loaded wool . They were Benalbanach, Benarty , Benledi & Benwyvis.

AllisterSpeirs
5th March 2014, 07:52
I was never with the Ben line, fine looking and well kept ships sorely missed by all of us ,as are all our other great shipping companys but I did sail in a few Blue funnel ships but never came across one of them in New Zealand I know they where regular on the Aussie coast but again they are now just a distant memory along with all the rest best regards to all hands and many thanks for the replies to my question Dave .

Yes defiantly fine ships ,even went to the lenths of going to the office in Leith I think it was no luck.

Bob Murdoch
5th March 2014, 09:14
I was on Bowring's "Cape Breton" on the coal run Sydney - Montreal for most of 1959. I remember the "Benledi" in Sydney N.S. It was a Sunday but not sure when. We had a visit from some of her crew. Dead place on a Sunday (ANYTIME). The reason it sticks in my mind is because after leaving the Cape Breton in December on return to Ipswich, I left Mar oni and joined the Union Co in N.Z. On my first trip on a USS Co ship, the Kauri, I saw Benledi arriving Sydney NSW. when we were leaving. That would have been June, 1960, as I had just had my 19th birthday.
Cheers Bob

Bill Morrison
5th March 2014, 19:54
Hi Durango, I noticed you wonder why you never saw Blue Funnel ships in New Zealand waters. I was lead to believe this had something to do with the earthquake around 1932, when the harbour at Napier was destroyed. The story goes there was four ship in port at the time. three stayed to lend assistance but the Blue Funnel ship did a runner! The N.Z. government was not happy with there action and Blue Funnel was no longer welcome in N.Z. waters . That's what I remember being told, but can't be certain its true.
Yours Bill Morrison

makko
6th March 2014, 14:54
Bill,
I believe that the story is untrue - From what I can remember, it was due to shipping confederations and had something to do with alliances. No one company could have x% of a certain liner route and BF decided to give up NZ to SSA and their confederation having acquired the Swedish East Asian route including Java, Malaysia, etc. which fitted with their traditional China Routes. There was something to do with voyage times and maximum steaming speed too.

All from memory and I am open to correction if I may have mixed things up.
Rgds.
Dave

Bill Morrison
6th March 2014, 20:19
Hi Dave, I think you are probably on the right track. As we all know it is commercial interests which drive shipping companies and governments, sentient is unknown to them. You will find a few references to this account but sailors love a good yarn!
Thanks for your post Bill

Phil Beaumont
15th March 2014, 19:07
Did BenLawers and BenStac not spend some time chartered to NZSC in the late 70's?

john fraser
16th March 2014, 09:44
Did BenLawers and BenStac not spend some time chartered to NZSC in the late 70's?

Phil. Benlawers was Safmarine charter a while,then PSNC. I remember the Benstac being Barber Line charter but don,t know any other charters she had

binliner
16th March 2014, 11:42
The Stac or the Valla was charted to Hapag Lloyd(spelling?) on a South American run I was on one of them but cannot remember which one.

Jim Harris
16th March 2014, 12:02
The Stac or the Valla was charted to Hapag Lloyd(spelling?) on a South American run I was on one of them but cannot remember which one.

How did you guys, working for a very solid company like 'Ben Line' on a more than pleasant run to the Far East, handle it when you found yourselves whisked away on a charter up the west coast of South America?

Were you excited, or thoroughly **ssed-off that your routines and plans were upset?


Regards,

Jim.

binliner
16th March 2014, 13:04
Very excited but when the words South America where mentioned visions of Rio and other hot exciting places not Punto Arenas in the middle of their winter extremely cold and nobody had cold weather gear with them but still we managed.

roymuir
9th October 2014, 16:40
Phil. Benlawers was Safmarine charter a while,then PSNC. I remember the Benstac being Barber Line charter but don,t know any other charters she had

I was in Benstac in 1977 at the end of the Barber Line charter. We dry-docked in Hong Kong then loaded around the East for Europe. We paid-off in Bilbao then she headed to the antipodes. I have photos of her in Auckland, Dunedin, Bluff and Sydney. My father went aboard her in Dunedin looking for me but by this time I had already shipped out in Benlomond.