commodore charnley.............

21st May 2007, 22:16
anyone remember him????????????


para handy 2
22nd May 2007, 09:34
I do indeed. para handy 2

Chris Isaac
23rd May 2007, 07:13
Very much so. I sailed with him quite frequently and came to be known as one of "Chuckles's" men.
I first met him when i was cadet and he was on one of his first commands on Constance Bowater.
My first voyage as 3rd Officer was with him on Roslin Castle
I then sailed as Extra second officer and second officer on Pendennis Castle with him for quite some time and then went with him to Windsor Castle when he was promoted to Commodore.
I like to think that he asked for me to sail with him as I was an officer that could be relied upon during the night but I suspect it was really that we shared a passion for golf and would nearly always sneak off in Port Elizabeth and play at Humewood together. Whilst playing I was allowed to call him Harold...... (a secret I have never revealed until today).
He had a great love of classical music and always brought his hi-fi and record collection to sea. He was often found in his dayroom, music up full blast and Chuckles standing at a lecturn with baton conducting an imaginary orchestra.
I held him in great respect and affection he was one of those masters who was there when you wanted him and not there when you didnt.
I understand he died a few years ago.

Bob Preston
23rd May 2007, 19:49
Is this the "Chuckles Charnley" I sailed with as Staff Commander on the Windsor Castle about 1964ish.( Wife is no help on this one, she can't remmember the year either ). Every one in Union Castle seemed to have a nick name.e.g. Swivel Eye Loyd, Logger Loyd, Windjammer Wilson, Happy Jack Wassell. It wasn't only the men. We had a Patsy The Nipple, a Titsallina a Tattyhead.Very few were complimentry.

Bob Preston ( The Golly )

Chris Isaac
24th May 2007, 07:52
Commodore Charnley was always known as Chuckles, although very professional he could always see the funny side of a situation.
He was held back being promoted to Master until quite late in his career. (something to do with a lady passenger on Kenya Castle if memory serves me right) I think the lady in question went on to become the second Mrs Charnley.
I recall that he was Chief Officer on Kenya Csatle for a long time before rising to Staff Commander on Windsor Castle. Thereafter his promotion to Master was rapid and he quickly worked his way up from cargo ships back to the mail ships. Ending up as Commodore on Widsor Castle.

25th May 2007, 19:21
I sailed with him for about a year in PENDENNIS CASTLE (I was 2nd R/O) On inspections, he always jokingly asked if I declared my ship model proceeds to the taxman. One voyage, I was involved in making clear plastic paperweights for his wife who sold them to passengers. They contained small radio components such as transistors, capacitors, resistors etc. At he end of the voyage he brought me my "pay" in a brown paper envelope. Smirking insolently, I asked if his wife would be declaring the proceeds for tax - he never asked me again, but I am sure he saw the funny side of it!
Bob Wilson

Chris Isaac
9th October 2007, 08:20
Copied from The Union Castle Staff Register Web Site

Bill Davies
9th October 2007, 08:35
The above ranking system has certainly been an education to me. And I thought Blue Funnel had gone mad when I heard they had introduced Senior Second Mates (to quell the BF/ED promotion unrest) in the 70s, having left in 61 because I refused a 4th Mates position.

Bob Preston
9th October 2007, 18:13
The rank system was when you have two Deck/off, five Eng/Offs on each watch plus four R/O's it got complicated.


9th October 2007, 20:08
Why Staff Commander as opposed to Staff Captain?

Were the Masters known as Commander?

...and his lace is that of a Rear Admiral...bit OTT for the MN.


9th October 2007, 21:07
In some companies, the OM was known as a Commander - most notably with British India, and in this case UC.
The braid is a bit odd, but it must have been a UC thing, in other companies where there was a Commodore it was a single, thick, gold stripe.

Bill Davies
9th October 2007, 21:42
We had a Senior Master so to speak in NBC (Master of 'Universe Ireland' on maiden voyage) but as he was ex USN Admiral he would not have been impressed with such pomp. Always had well pressed khaki's whenever I relieved him.

9th October 2007, 22:40
on the captain/commander theme............. QssPageNameZWDVWQQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItem

9th October 2007, 23:22
In my time the Master was always Captain, unless the Commodore, and his second in command was the Staff Commander for UCL passenger mailships.

17th February 2008, 14:56
Sailed with him on the Windsor in 1975. Never had any bother with him. It was the c/e that didn't like me. Told me to get my hair cut when we were at boat drill in Southampton!

4th April 2008, 19:15

just did a google serch for harold and found this(==D)

Harold was my grandfathers brother, I met him a few times but at the time he was living in africa, I will send this link to my uncle who I am sure will be interested.

Kind Regards John

john strange
5th May 2008, 07:15
The only Charnley I recall was cheif officer on the Windsor back in 1963/4 when I was officers steward. Think he got to master but that was all as far as I know.

Chris Isaac
5th May 2008, 10:43
That was him!

5th May 2008, 20:24
Was this the same Captain Charnley of the MV Cedric.if so pic in my gallery.

Chris Isaac
6th May 2008, 07:27
Dont think so, Harold Charnley had been with UC since 1942 has was with SS & A in about 1940 but he would have been 3rd Mate at best at that time.

Sandy Galbraith
31st May 2008, 00:40
I was third mate on the Windsor Castle for most of 1975. I was aboard when he got married for a second time (in Capetown, I think) and was at the reception. He wasn't a bad skipper at all. I remember him as being quite short, bandy-legged (not a particularly good look in tropical whites!!!) and he had quite a high pitched voice. Thinking back to those far off days, my favourite Union Castle captain was Patrick St Quentin Beadon, who was a real gentleman.

This is a great site - I only joined today!

All the best,


Bob Preston
31st May 2008, 08:41
There is a picture of Chuckles Charnley under Life On Board, I think. On the bridge of Windsor Castle with Captain Patey. About voyage 22 to 25 1964.


para handy 2
8th June 2008, 14:51
I was told by a Marine Superintendent that a Staff Captain was one who had already been promoted to Master. A Staff Commander was a senior Chief Officer who had not yet been promoted to Master.

Bob Preston
9th June 2008, 07:28
Staff Commander & Staff Capt. were the same, the title changed !964/65. Chief Officer was always the senior watch keeper on the 4/8. I seem to remember that Staff Comm. had had a command.