I'm pretty certain Captain Scobie was the Senior Superintendent in Bury Street.Digging back through the old paperwork,he seemed to sign all the letters I had from Head Office.
Charlie's comment "No Airports back then....." summed up the attitude of the Company to repatriation after long trips in the early 50's.The cheapest route,however long it took. Leaving the "Inchanga" in Colombo, after 2+ years away,I moved to the "Myrtlebank",in port at that time.She sailed,so I spent the next three weeks in the old GOH.The "Lochybank" eventually staggered in, and I joined her, eventually getting back to the UK three months after leaving "Inchanga"
Finishing my time in "Forresbank" in Bombay the next year,my return to the UK was an even longer safari. After an initial two week stay in the MN Club in Bombay,I was sent across India by train to Calcutta-a night,day,night trip Joining the "Roybank",I eventually sailed in her to Colombo.Leaving her,I joined the "Weybank" for the final passage home.An interesting ship.I remember the Chief Engineer was on some energy saving drive.Lighting would be normal for a short period after dark-then after a couple of hours would begin to dim and by 2100 reading was impossible.It took ten weeks from the "Forresbank" to the final,welcome,escape in Birkenhead.The next step was to Fyffes,a very different company.
I enjoyed a lot of my time in Bank Line but felt I wanted to move on. A variety of Masters-good and bad,across the whole spectrum. The worst, a homosexual,who targeted the younger Apprentices.The best,Stafford-Watts. The only time I ever saw him loose his cool was in Calcutta during a Hooglhi Bore standby.A particularly violent Spring Bore carried away a forward cable.S-W requested "Slow Ahead".Nothing happened.After a time the phone rang and the J/E on watch asked "Did we mean that movement-if so,he'd better call the Second" A moments silence:B****r shouted S-W,hurling the blancoed topee he wore on duty,night and day, over the side
I suspect that the standards improved in the later fifties, they were pretty basic BOT minimum in my time,even extending to different menus for Officers and Passengers in "Inchanga"-unheard of in Fyffes
Last edited by David E; 29th July 2009 at 00:02..