Cammell Laird cranes - Ships Nostalgia
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Cammell Laird cranes

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  #1  
Old 12th June 2019, 21:02
Pat Kennedy's Avatar
Pat Kennedy Pat Kennedy is offline  
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Cammell Laird cranes

Cammel Lairds have announced that demolition of the two Butters mono-tower cranes at No5 drydock has commenced.
These two cranes have been part of the Birkenhead skyline for 60 years, and will be familiar to any members here who have been in Lairds or sailed past the yard.
I feel a personal sense of loss because I drove both of these cranes many times during the years 1968 to 1979. They were a pleasure to drive, particularly the 50 ton crane on the South side of No 5 dock, which was a Rolls Royce of dockyard cranes and had a very comfortable driver's cab.
Sadly, with the demise of these two, Lairds has only one permanent crane left in the whole yard. Mobile cranes are hired in when required. A strange state of affairs, a shipyard without cranes.

https://www.clbh.co.uk/in-the-commun...ear-old-cranes
Attached Images
File Type: jpg demolition 4.jpg (178.5 KB, 16 views)
File Type: jpg demolition5.jpg (159.4 KB, 17 views)
File Type: jpg demolition 7.jpg (160.9 KB, 13 views)
File Type: jpg demolition2.jpg (143.9 KB, 12 views)
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  #2  
Old 12th June 2019, 22:36
OilJiver OilJiver is offline  
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Spent a bit of time in numerous ship repair facilities – none exactly state of the art. (particularly one in UK on other side of the Mersey). But as they say in the business, “if you’ve got a hole in the ground and a crane you can do most things”.

Sorry the iconic cranes that you’ve worked with are going Pat. Hope you might have a few more pics – maybe some from the cabs?

OJ
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  #3  
Old 13th June 2019, 09:56
Foca Foca is offline  
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Talking about things that have been demolished, on train journeys to London I always used to look forward to seeing the radio masts of Rugby radio, and think of all the phone calls I made through there to my wife, sadly no more as they too have been demolished…just hope that they do not need them in the future.
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Old 13th June 2019, 10:15
tom roberts tom roberts is offline  
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Another crane loss some yrs ago was the crane on the Manchester Ship Canal at Eastam that was used to lift of topmasts,funnels, before passage up the canal.
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  #5  
Old 13th June 2019, 22:10
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Pat Kennedy Pat Kennedy is offline  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OilJiver View Post
Spent a bit of time in numerous ship repair facilities – none exactly state of the art. (particularly one in UK on other side of the Mersey). But as they say in the business, “if you’ve got a hole in the ground and a crane you can do most things”.

Sorry the iconic cranes that you’ve worked with are going Pat. Hope you might have a few more pics – maybe some from the cabs?

OJ
Hi OilJiver
I did take a few pics from my regular crane, which was the 50 ton crane on the South wall of No 1 dock adjacent to Woodside ferry terminal. I only had a little box brownie at the time, so the photos aren't brilliant. these were all taken at the time that Cammell Laird shiprepairers had changed it's name to Western Shiprepairers for some arcane reason.
Regards,
Pat

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Old 13th June 2019, 22:28
OilJiver OilJiver is offline  
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Very interesting pics from very different times Pat. Many thanks for posting them. I know that CL have had mixed fortunes over the years (not least of which the Costa debacle). Despite the loss of the cranes, hope the future holds good for the yard and all working there.
Rgds
OJ
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  #7  
Old 13th June 2019, 22:48
Barrie Youde Barrie Youde is offline  
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Some splendid reminders - including Birkenhead Corporation Buses!

Thank you for posting, Pat.
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Old 13th June 2019, 23:50
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I only wish I had taken more photos while I had the opportunity Barrie. Even though cameras were strictly forbidden in the yard, probably for reasons of commercial sensitivity. But no one ever spotted me up there with my box brownie.
Regards,
Pat
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Old 14th June 2019, 11:50
Engine Serang Engine Serang is offline  
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Enjoyed the photographs and my first sighting of a Birkenhead Bus.
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  #10  
Old 21st June 2019, 01:05
Hygromia/3rdShip Hygromia/3rdShip is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tom roberts View Post
Another crane loss some yrs ago was the crane on the Manchester Ship Canal at Eastam that was used to lift of topmasts,funnels, before passage up the canal.
I lived in Eastham from 1948 until moving to New Zealand in 1983. We used to play around the ship canal and sometimes climbed to the top of the crane.
A mate jumped from the top several times, I was too chicken and jumped off the half way point.
Used to see Shell Tankers at Eastham Docks, never realising I'd be sailing on them, years later.
Joined my first tanker, the Hinea in Rouen and went to Shell Haven for a cargo bound for ....Eastham!!
I also worked at Stanlow refinery for 10 years.
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  #11  
Old 21st June 2019, 01:07
shinz shinz is offline
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Nice photos there Pat, vessels of a now sadly departed era, I used to dream of a trip on a cargo liner in preference to a passenger liner as a young guy, sadly, by the time I was old enough to do so, the opportunities were largely gone & like the rear of the world, I was in too much of a hurry. You'd have had no shortage of things to look at I imagine, nothing like an office with a view.
Steve.
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Old 21st June 2019, 03:19
Gerald Jackson Gerald Jackson is offline  
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Thanks for posting.Memories of Merseyside, brilliant.
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  #13  
Old 21st June 2019, 11:45
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I drove past the yard this morning and noted that the 50 ton crane is completely gone, and the 15 ton is minus jib, tower and most of the machine house.
That 15 ton was not nearly as comfortable to drive as the 50 ton. It always had a wonky slewing mechanism which jittered back a bit when you stopped turning. Still, the Butters cranes that Lairds installed in the late 1950,s, seven in all, lasted a very long time and were all very fine examples of British engineering, built, I believe by a Glasgow firm.
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Old 29th June 2019, 19:12
stevekelly10 stevekelly10 is offline  
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Well at least one old dockside crane has found a new lease of life at the Glastonbury festival Pat https://www.theguardian.com/music/20...reathing-crane
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Old 29th June 2019, 21:32
OilJiver OilJiver is offline  
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Many thanks Steve. Read the article with interest. (Wonder which intrepid outfit took on the SIs??)
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Old 29th June 2019, 22:05
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Originally Posted by stevekelly10 View Post
Well at least one old dockside crane has found a new lease of life at the Glastonbury festival Pat https://www.theguardian.com/music/20...reathing-crane
Interesting Steve. It looks like a Stothert & Pitt D2 level luffing cargo crane, probably the 10 ton SWL version, as used on timber discharging berths in many UK docks.
These were manufactured in Bath, not far from Glastonbury, so in a sense it has come home.
No such luck for the Cammell Laird cranes which are likely to be falling into an electric arc furnace in the very near future.
Thanks for posting Steve.
Best regards
Pat
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