HAI DA ex CENTAUR -7989/64

tanker
17th May 2006, 13:27
Someone probably remember her:Pas/cargo ship by unspeified Chinese interest to Xinhui
Shipbreaking China and reported 2/2006 although dem.is believed to have been completed somtime previous to this.( notice from Marine News no.5 may 2006).
Gp (member of M.N.) (Thumb)

sandman
17th May 2006, 13:41
I remember her coming down from Avonmouth,when she was on charter to the St Helena shipping co,during the Falklands war.

Allan James
20th May 2006, 18:33
I used to see Centaur in Singapore regularly during my cadetship. As a rather cynical Midshipman, I rather felt that Blue Flue had tried to put too much on her, animal and human passengers, dry cargo and reefer space!!!!! But she was beautiful and fulfilled her role well, proving that Middies (in spite of their own self-importance) know little and old fashioned ship owners were really knew their business!

It was a shame that there wasn't an attempt to save her to use as a living memorial to the Merchant Navy, in the same way as an attempt to save the Glenfalloch had been tried. But in typical fashion it would have been doomed to failure, because this country of ours cannot remember its history, how we became Great Britain and had been reliant on seafarers, both Royal and Merchant Navy to keep us this way!

I refer everyone to Eldersuk and his comments in the thread "Birkenhead U-Boat", he is much more succinct that myself!

Regards

Allan

jimmys
6th January 2007, 14:47
I sailed on the Centaur for two round trips to relieve 4/eng for appendics operation. Was transferred from an A boat but cannot remember exact date but around 1965. I am surrprised there was not more reaction to this post as this was one of the most famous vessels that docked in Singapore. She was a beautiful ship built in John Browns Clydebank, 200 first class passengers, Perth-Singapore-KL-Penang, return. She was always full of visitors.
Passenger list 75% female, parties galore,draught Swan lager 6d. per glass.
4/-shillings for a bottle of gin. I feel something happening in my heart and loins. I will need to go and rest.

jimmys

Graham McMorine
6th January 2007, 14:59
Hi jimmy, I am in envy of you she was indeed a sight to cherish, I was fortunate to be invited aboard her while she was along side in Singapore. Majestic ship and pride of the fleet at that time. Regards, Graham(Thumb)

quietman
15th January 2007, 21:59
Never met anyone who called her anything but beautiful, She was the first ship I wuold look for in singapore

Hague
3rd March 2007, 09:03
I used to see Centaur in Singapore regularly during my cadetship. As a rather cynical Midshipman, I rather felt that Blue Flue had tried to put too much on her, animal and human passengers, dry cargo and reefer space!!!!! But she was beautiful and fulfilled her role well, proving that Middies (in spite of their own self-importance) know little and old fashioned ship owners were really knew their business!

It was a shame that there wasn't an attempt to save her to use as a living memorial to the Merchant Navy, in the same way as an attempt to save the Glenfalloch had been tried. But in typical fashion it would have been doomed to failure, because this country of ours cannot remember its history, how we became Great Britain and had been reliant on seafarers, both Royal and Merchant Navy to keep us this way!

I refer everyone to Eldersuk and his comments in the thread "Birkenhead U-Boat", he is much more succinct that myself!

Regards

Allan

Allan,
I wouldn't disagree with you about the owners attempting to 'cram too much into one ship'. Crossed my mind when I visited her initially when she made a token visit to Liverpool after leaving the builders enroute to the Far East and thereafter many times in Singapore until I left in 1968.
Another thought might be the 'Priam' class. On her third voyage she was fitted with Container bearer's across No.2 Hatch to experiment with these things called TEUs. From 67 on The China Boats were changing (EDs Officers seniority, etc,stc) and my observations from the memberships is that much of the good memories pre-date 1967. The rest is History.
Hague

rstimaru
4th March 2007, 13:53
I saw her in 1962 still on the stocks at John Browns This was when we took over the Carmania Who was in the next dock fitting out BOB

Fairfield
9th February 2009, 22:04
Depends on time of year- could have been CLAN MACNAIR, BRITISH HUSSAR or SOMERSET.

Pat Kennedy
10th February 2009, 12:43
Depends on time of year- could have been CLAN MACNAIR, BRITISH HUSSAR or SOMERSET.


I remember seeing her in John Browns, and on the next slipway was the Kent.
Pat

jimg0nxx
10th February 2009, 13:35
Whilst living on the south of Hong Kong Island in the late 80s, used to see her regularly as Hai Da. She was of course under the Chinese flag at this stage. She had been somewhat modified, but still looked good compared to the numerous "box boats". I believe she was on a "ferry run" from Hong Kong to Shanghai.

Jim

derekbruce
12th March 2009, 18:12
As a ship repairmanager with the then Keppel shipyard there was always keen compition as to who would be awarded the CENTAUR during her dry docking periods . As luck would have it i won the lottery on several occasions .She was indeed a lovely vessel and i have many happy memories of Centaur .The C/o at the time was Jock Wishart whom i first met on the Charon the vessel Centaur replaced. If any of you ex Blue guys remember Jock or know of his wherabouts i would appreciate hearing from you.

steve2
12th March 2009, 18:41
Hi Derek- I remember doing the anual drydock on the Centaur in 1971 when I was 3/E. We had the Fresh Water tanks opened up for survey. These were situated port and stbd of the shaft tunnel and boxed in with the framing. The surveyor was in the tank when the sewage pipe that ran above the tank stared to leak. (someone scratched a scab!) We got the suveyer out and the lid on before he noticed the smell. As I was small I then got the job of removing and blanking the leaking pipe. All the bolts were rusted up and the nuts had to be chiselled off. By this time the framing had filled up with, eeer, effulent and the each hammer blow set up a wave of gunge. After, it was overalls off and a hose down before an hour in the shower!
Steve.

Trident
14th March 2009, 03:53
G/Day Derek, I remember John(Jock) Wishart well, he was 1st Mate on the Gorgon at the time (62. 63)just a few voyages prior to her being sold, the 2nd Mate was Mike Gusterson 3rd Mate Jim ****** R/O Barry Motram, Chief Engineer Sam Mitchel, 3rd Engieer Bill Gillbard,the 4th engineer was Bob Purvis for several trips, there were three 2nd engineers during my time John Deakin John Lamomond or was it Lamont, were two of them and I was the Electrician, I can remember the faces of all the other members of the crew but there names escape me at present,

derekbruce
14th March 2009, 16:45
Hi steve2 & trident,
Thanks for that guys it was good to hear from you.Yes Trident it was Gorgon not Charon when i first meet Jock.Recall having lunch on board in 64 with my infant duaghter & one of the Mates volonteered to look after her.However, not for long??.She appeared to be a happy ship.

Steve,i recall the C/eng, was it Les xxxx abit on the tubby side but a very nice chap.

steve2
14th March 2009, 18:13
Derek- The Chief was Les Goldsmith. We used to have scavenge fires as regular as clockwork, every second trip between Perth and Singapore and always on the night before arriving at Singapore. It was a case of slowing whichever engine it was, hanging the fuel pump up, increasing the lubrication and then phone Les. On arrival the Scavenge cleaners would meet the ship.
Years later I joined Maersk and drydocked the Maersk Handler and the Maersk Helper at Keppel Harbour. The weekly drinks and food at the club were much appreciated. The Russian Fish Factory Ships were also in for re-fit during that period. We had a couple of visits on board them- how the other half lived! I believe that the small 'catcher' ships were partly crewed by convicts.
Regards, Steve.

derekbruce
16th March 2009, 17:53
Steve,
Thanks again.When the first of the Russian F/Ships arr at Keppel we thought it would be agood idea to present the crews mess with a TV set.It was hardly up the gangway when the Old Man spotted it and redirected to his cabin. We finished up by presenting futher TVs to C/Eng,2nd/Eng,C/O,2nd O/F& finally the crews mess.My boss wasent a happy bunny after that lot specially when they gave him a whales tooth in return.

Do you remember the Blue Funnel shore crowd Steve? IE, Jack Thomas,Bob Nevison,Doug Litherland ,Larry Wong, whos father, i believe was a Bishop in Hong Kong,& there was Sid Pierce who came in from Hong Kong on ocasions.Bob Nevison was famed for his roast beef dinners,they were really good.Bob i recall was quite laid back never got too excited even when the sxxt hit the fan.
regards Derek
.

steve2
17th March 2009, 14:24
Derek- Certainly remember Sid. I was on the Elpenor and had gone up the road in Port Swettenham for a plate of seafood (can't remember the name of the joint but it was at the old warfe, great place). I got back an hour later and the ship was leaning onto the jetty with most of the crew ashore. We had been loading Latex into the fwd stbd deep tank and ballast into the port aft deep tank. Soundings showed ballast in both the aft tanks. Sid was informed and in the meantime we filled all the deeptanks right up and got her upright. By that time Sid had arrived and started a witchhunt, convinced that someone had removed the wrong blank. We all got personel interviews with him and asked to 'confess'. In the end it proved that the division plate between the suctions for the two aft tanks had given way. Sid then reckoned we would be going to Singapore to offload and that the ship would possibly be scrapped. He hadn't counted on the millions of pounds worth of Thai banknotes welded into the fwd strongroom and that the insurance was nearly up! When we got to Bangkok there were student riots going on and we were kept at the Dolphins guarded by a heavily armed Thai Navy. Yep, certainly remember Sid! He always claimed never to keep a notebook during repair work as he could keep all the details in his head. Yeah.
Steve.