R.Abel & Sons

19th October 2011, 16:30
I see that Frank Le Couteur joined Richard Abel & Sons as a deck boy in 1924, his first ship being the BRITISH QUEEN about which I've been able to find nothing.

I'm also wondering if the Abel & Cooper aggregate dredgers could load themselves and discharge into sand carriers alongside them at the same time or, as I suspect, the two activities were separate.

Anybody know the answers?

Take care out there.


Stephen Carter
28th November 2011, 13:57
Richard Abel were involved in dredging and lighterage on the Mersey and Manchester Ship Canal. They had a fleet of both wooden sailing flats and steel barges and some very elderly tugs. In the early days they had a floating grab crane on a pontoon moored in the Mersey and the flats and barges would come alongside and be loaded. They delivered much sand and agregate for the building of Otterspool Promenade. Later on they acquired some ex Ship canal Co dredgers which were both grab and suction, but they still used them anchored at times to load barges. Many of the craft had names which ended either in 'dale' such as Wharfdale, Dovedale etc, or family names such as the tug Richard Abel.
Other tugs included the Aviator and Waterfly. They were taken over by RMC,(Ready Mix Concrete) I think, and then had modern suction dredgers. Abels also owned a subsiduary called the Fleetwood Sand and Gravel Co, once again with some very elderly suction dredgers working in Morecambe Bay and the River Wyre.



28th November 2011, 16:54
BRITISH QUEEN id 1097782. Built 1890 by Palmers. Jarrow. grt 4388. 1904 converted to Tanker. 1904 named LANSING. 1942 converted to Cargo. 1946 named CHINA NAVIGATOR. scrapped Shanghai June 1948.

17th December 2011, 07:21
Many thanks for the information gents...clearly the British Queen had nothing to do with dredging... the Abel information adds a little more to the tangled web of the the Abel / Cooper story. Cheers. Paul