Hope you're reading - that was a most moving and descriptive poem. Thank you.
I knew Palm Line, but only from the Mersey end. Do you remember/did you know Bill Wilcox, Mersey Pilot? My parents met at his house.
Also, Captain Jack Pugh? One winter night in (about) 1963, he was inward bound for Bromborough. Conditions were so foul that both pilot-cutters were off-station and Pugh steamed into the Mersey on his own. I was an apprentice aboard the Bar Pilot-Cutter which was taking shelter south of Tower Buoy, off New Brighton. As Pugh approached New Brighton with a strong flood-tide behind him, Pilot Jack Dickinson set off to meet him in the boarding-boat (an open punt with an engine). Brian Curry was the coxswain and I was the bow-hand.
We chased Pugh in our open boat from Tower Buoy, all the way between the Landing Stages and past Brunswick until Dickinson was able to get aboard at Garston Bar. Never forgotten. Neither is the passage back to Tower Buoy (about two hours or more) forgotten, pumping and baling for our lives.