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In the 1960s and 1970s, this small, Soviet cruise ship and some of her sisters offered “cheapie”cruises from London’s Tilbury Landing Stage and other western European ports, the main aim of which was to gain “hard” currency for the Soviet Union.
NADEZHDA KRUPSKAJA was built in the German Democratic

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NADEZHDA KRUPSKAJA was built in 1963 (not 1961!) at Wismar in German Democratic Republic. She was the sixteenth in the long series of 19 exact similar ships - a world record what about sea-going passenger liners. She left the MORFLOT list of ships in 1974(already) and was handed over to Ministerstvo Oborony SSSR (Ministry of Defence of the Union of S.S.R) and Tchernomorskoj Flot (Black Sea Navy) and had port of registry at Sevastópol' under her new name KUBANj (or KUBAN' ) - the baval base on the Krym (old style: Crimea) peninsula. Later she was sol to Bulgaria in mid-90's as SUSANA under Bulgarian flag in the port of Varna or Bourgas I think at quay as a ship for night entertainment and striptease - it had some rumours that vessel then.... As Navy ship she was still painted all white and worked as hospital ship and resting ship for submarine crews and so on. She also porbably made some journeys to Cuba and Angola and other allies of the workers states and for the Organisation of the Warsaw Treaty (OWT) in Europe in those days.
The MIHAIL KALININ class of ships sometimes unofficially was called "VETERANY BOLSHEVIKOV" - Veterans of the Bolsheviks. Nadezhda Konstantinovna KRUPSKAJA (1869-1939) was married to a certain lawyer Vladimir Il'itch Uljanov in Petersburg in early 1900's who made his name around the world under his political "nom secret" as in inner political isolation in eastern Siberia in those days at the Lena river - "LENIN" (the man from the Lena). Krupskaja belonged together with world-famous Madame Kollontay to the world's very first female ministers of any government. She was responsible for childrens' education and pedagogical problems etc. This ship however NADEZHDA KRUPSKAJA often went on summertime also on the local Baltic sea Line: Stockholm-Leningrad-Stockholm-Tallinn(Estonian SSR)-Stockholm except for the long line Lebningrad-via Baltic and North Sea ports like Oslo eetc-to London and Le Havre in France. Some times the ships on this line could continue on an non-published timetable to La Habana or Mariel on Cuba from Le Havre, and then return and starting their for the westerners official timetable again. This line to Le Havre and London closed in 1986 if I do not recall it, as mistake.
The last 4 ships in the Veterany Bolsheviki-class (built 1958-1964) were single class ships and their funnel was a bit higher than the other ships' and they all took 314 bed passengers aboard - no deck passengers were allowed. (This number for passengers as "333" is written in all Lloyd's Registers for all the ships in the series - and that is a wrong number for all ships - the beds vary from 262(BAJKAL, 1961) up to 349(PETROPAVLOVSK, 1960) on each individual ship).

Johan de Nauclér
Researcher on USSR Navy and merchant fleet in postwar era

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