I was originaly scheduled to move from NZS to OCL in the first group, however, with the Jervis Bay fiasco delivery, OCL would have entered an unknown period with more people than ships. I then was told to hold on for a short trip on the Manapouri in ballast to New Zealand with the return experimental palletised cargo.
The next holding was a 2 month assignment with the shore personal based at Antwerp and Rotterdam, remember the Tilbury blacking of the start up, this gave me experience with the Bay boats as well as the ACT 1 & 2 and other European ships as they appeared from the builders.
Finally I was assigned to the Botany Bay as 2/O/N and did about 6 round trips including the first arrival of a Bay boat in a UK port, Southampton with engine trouble.
When Tilbury finally came on line I was seconded to the terminal staff
to carry out work study for a year. This gave me access to all the ships using the Tilbury terminal.
The ships names were: OCL: Jervis Bay, Botany Bay, Discovery Bay, Encounter Bay, Flinders Bay & Moreton Bay. ACT: ACT1 & ACT 2. Hapag Lloyd: Sydney Express & Melbourne Express. Messageries Maritimes: Kangourou. (The Kangourou was very similar to the OCL vessels, the others were different. All had to be able to use the Tilbury locks to access the terminal).
Instead of returning to the fleet, I accepted a job on the terminal in Southampton and was introduced to the Far East Bay boats: Liverpool Bay, Tokyo Bay, Cardigan Bay and Kowloon Bay.
The job was not as described in the interview and after a year it was time to move on.