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Bank Line Cargoes - then and now

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  #1  
Old 31st December 2013, 10:32
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Alan Rawlinson Alan Rawlinson is offline
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Bank Line Cargoes - then and now

Mulling over the demise of Bank Line ( as we knew it) I found myself mentally running through the typical cargoes, and trade routes and wondering how the various flows would be handled and carried today, and indeed, if the same demands exist. Containerisation accounts for a lot and for the huge changes that we all saw, but ther are still questions in my mind i.e.

Copra - does it still get lifted to the UK and if so, how? Is it also in boxes?

Coconut oil??

Bitumen - presume this is on flats or in boxes, and imagine the demand still exists, or does it?

sulphur / potash from the Gulf Ports. Is this in boxes now or lifted by charter ships in bulk?

Machinery from the USA - some of this would go on flats, except for the bigger units - who carries this down to Aus/NZ?

Would be interested if anyone can fill in the blanks.

It is quite amazing how a huge trade can be absorbed by the wider market. The West African trade by ED's at it's peak was lifted by 11 sailings per month to all ports. Let's say 100,000 tons. Today there is no trace, as French and Scandinavian vessels seem to have soaked up the ongoing demand.
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  #2  
Old 31st December 2013, 14:11
rabaul rabaul is offline  
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Alan

My understanding is that there has been little money to be made in PNG through copra over the last 10 - 15 years.The days of the Government Copra Board gave way to privitisation in the nineties and any subsidies now come from local regional government - tonnage figures for 2011 were the lowest recorded at around 30000 tons produced - much still sitting on the plantation or beach. I know of two mills in PNG / New Britain 'that sometimes
operate and produce goods' - I do not know what the 'goods' are.

I have reproduced the Swire services below for their PNG service and also their South Pacific / Europe run - this is dated 2013 .

This may be progress but ........

Best wishes for 2014

Bill McFadyen


PNG services

Swire Shipping's Papua New Guinea (PNG) service operates five multi-purpose vessels (3x Miho Class 981teu / 13,568 dwt and 2x K-Class 1,257 / 22,000 dwt) from Australia to PNG and the Solomon Islands.

This service offers frequency and capacity to meet diversified market needs with cargo receivals in Sydney, Newcastle, Melbourne and Brisbane. Experienced cargo superintendents employed in Brisbane and Lae ensure your cargo is handled smoothly and efficiently.

Service Frequency

Market leading fixed day weekly sailings from Australian East Coast ports to main ports in PNG.
Calling
Melbourne, Sydney, Newcastle, Brisbane, Port Moresby, Lae, Madang, Lihir, Honiara, Noro
Also available subject to feeder or inducement: Alotau, Oro Bay, Wewak, Kimbe, Rabaul.

Contact Us

To find out more about the Papua New Guinea (PNG) Service please contact our trade desks at [email protected]his e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Europe Pacific Express Service


Swire Shipping's Europe Pacific Express service is a regular and reliable transhipment service connecting Northern Europe and the Mediterranean region with ports in New Caledonia, Fiji, Vanuatu, the Samoa's, Tahiti, Wallis and Futuna, Tonga and the Federated States of Micronesia.

Through our hub in Singapore, we also have frequent on carriage connections to all major ports in Papua New Guinea and the Solomon Islands. We can also offer services to Australian and New Zealand ports served with transhipment in Singapore.

Our weekly departures from Le Havre to Noumea in New Caledonia have a through transit time of only 40 days on average. From the North West Continent the transit time to Lae and Port Moresby is approximately 35 days.



Service Frequency


Weekly departures from Northern & Southern ports in Europe with transhipment over Singapore to final destination in the Pacific for containers. We also offer regular departures ex Europe using the services of the main liner break-bulk and RoRo operators.



Service Benefits

Fast-competitve transit times and a reliable weekly sailing frequency

* Competitive transit times and reliable weekly sailing frequency
* Express service routing to meet the requirements of New Caledonian customers
* Extensive port coverage and seamless transhipment in Singapore
* Providing a full range of equipment, including general-purpose and refrigerated containers, open top and open side containers, 20' and 40' flat racks
* The ability to carry shipments of IMO and OOG cargo

* Specialists in the carriage of project shipments, construction and earth moving equipment, vehicles and break-bulk/conventional parcels.

* Proven track record with over 10 years' experience in transhipment and taking advantage of our experienced agency network throughout

Calling
Major ports of loading are: Helsinki, Copenhagen, Aarhus, Gothenburg, Stockholm, Hamburg, Bremerhaven, Felixstowe, Southampton, Immingham, Thamesport, Rotterdam, Antwerp and Le Havre, Fos, Naples, Genoa, Livorno, La Spezia, Porto Maghera,
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  #3  
Old 31st December 2013, 15:06
bones140 bones140 is offline  
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Alan/Rabul,
Looking at the Swire Shipping website it would seem that there is a profitable trade still available for break-bulk/container/heavy lift cargoes as emphasized by Swires investment in eight 31000 dwt multi purpose ships.

http://www.swireshipping.com/images/...dout_Final.pdf

The final ship was delivered this October.
A possible answer to your question Alan is that the trade is still there and Swires are doing the work that was traditionally undertaken by Bank Line. I suppose time will tell if Swires can succeed where Bank Line failed.
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  #4  
Old 31st December 2013, 15:11
RHL RHL is offline  
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bones140-Alan/Rabul, I think Swires bought Bank line a few years ago. Maybe they saw a future in shipping to/from PNG and hence the new ships they have built to continue that trade.
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  #5  
Old 3rd January 2014, 14:27
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Alan Rawlinson Alan Rawlinson is offline
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picking up the pieces

Rabaul

Thanks for the interesting URL to Swires page re the big new ships. They are obviously designed for hub to hub work of a sort using feeder services. Interesting ships, but they have 80's stamped all over them metaphorically speaking and are similar to the very succesful Wilhelmsen multi purpose vessels of that era. Good luck to them anyway - one of the last British outfits.

Re the ' old' Bank Line haunts - there are more Q's than answers, as the song goes....

I wonder who picks up the copra from the Line islands, these days? Does anyone know?

How do all those millions of Gunny bags make their way from India/Bangladesh to Africa and South American ports?

Still wondering about the bitumen from Point Fortin - is it in bulk tankers now?

The answers are out there somewhere -help!

Happy New Year to all the readers / Alan
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  #6  
Old 3rd January 2014, 15:04
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Swires also have a massive fleet on order for handymax bulkers, they also have a firm handle on the trade with their global network:

http://www.swireshipping.com/index.p...553&Itemid=160

http://www.swireshipping.com/index.p...id=2&Itemid=27
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  #7  
Old 3rd January 2014, 18:55
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Alan Rawlinson View Post
Mulling over the demise of Bank Line ( as we knew it) I found myself mentally running through the typical cargoes, and trade routes and wondering how the various flows would be handled and carried today, and indeed, if the same demands exist. Containerisation accounts for a lot and for the huge changes that we all saw, but ther are still questions in my mind i.e.

Copra - does it still get lifted to the UK and if so, how? Is it also in boxes? - Not to the UK any more, but still to Europe in small quantities in bulk, either on bulk carriers or loose on the remaining breakbulk cargo ships still in operation

Coconut oil?? - In chemical tankers

Bitumen - presume this is on flats or in boxes, and imagine the demand still exists, or does it? - In specialised bitumen tankers

sulphur / potash from the Gulf Ports. Is this in boxes now or lifted by charter ships in bulk? - What remains of the trade is carried in bulk carriers

Machinery from the USA - some of this would go on flats, except for the bigger units - who carries this down to Aus/NZ? - Not much from the US now, mostly going down from Korea/China

Would be interested if anyone can fill in the blanks.

It is quite amazing how a huge trade can be absorbed by the wider market. The West African trade by ED's at it's peak was lifted by 11 sailings per month to all ports. Let's say 100,000 tons. Today there is no trace, as French and Scandinavian vessels seem to have soaked up the ongoing demand.
Four modern combination container/ro-ro ships of 25,000 dwt can cover this and do with a round trip of six weeks Europe-West Africa-Europe rotation
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  #8  
Old 3rd January 2014, 20:05
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small ports

Orbitaman

Thanks for the interesting replies,,,,

I guess some of the more remote ( bizarre?) ports served by the Bank Line fleet remain outside of the modern networks. I'm thinking of placed like Fanning Island ( Line Islands), Thevennard (S Australia) and loads of remote outposts. Probably served by smaller feeders.

One of the bank Line routes was China Clay from Par (near me in Cornwall) to Burnie (Tasmania) for the paper industry. I think this still moves in chartered vessels.
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  #9  
Old 3rd January 2014, 20:40
Andy Lavies Andy Lavies is offline  
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Took a load of china clay from Fowey to Burnie in 1961. Laganbank was said to be the largest ship to have called at that time and the harbourmaster had to move many yacht moorings to give us room to swing.
Andy
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  #10  
Old 3rd January 2014, 23:43
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Took a full load of salt from the gulf of Cutch to Japan on the Etivebank,when we reached Japan it was mid winter and the salt had frozen solid,and it was a heck of a job to discharge,

jim
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  #11  
Old 4th January 2014, 01:08
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PNG shipping

Quote:
Originally Posted by rabaul View Post
Alan

My understanding is that there has been little money to be made in PNG through copra over the last 10 - 15 years.The days of the Government Copra Board gave way to privitisation in the nineties and any subsidies now come from local regional government - tonnage figures for 2011 were the lowest recorded at around 30000 tons produced - much still sitting on the plantation or beach. I know of two mills in PNG / New Britain 'that sometimes
operate and produce goods' - I do not know what the 'goods' are.

I have reproduced the Swire services below for their PNG service and also their South Pacific / Europe run - this is dated 2013 .

This may be progress but ........

Best wishes for 2014

Bill McFadyen


PNG services

Swire Shipping's Papua New Guinea (PNG) service operates five multi-purpose vessels (3x Miho Class 981teu / 13,568 dwt and 2x K-Class 1,257 / 22,000 dwt) from Australia to PNG and the Solomon Islands.

This service offers frequency and capacity to meet diversified market needs with cargo receivals in Sydney, Newcastle, Melbourne and Brisbane. Experienced cargo superintendents employed in Brisbane and Lae ensure your cargo is handled smoothly and efficiently.

Service Frequency

Market leading fixed day weekly sailings from Australian East Coast ports to main ports in PNG.
Calling
Melbourne, Sydney, Newcastle, Brisbane, Port Moresby, Lae, Madang, Lihir, Honiara, Noro
Also available subject to feeder or inducement: Alotau, Oro Bay, Wewak, Kimbe, Rabaul.

Contact Us

To find out more about the Papua New Guinea (PNG) Service please contact our trade desks at [email protected]his e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Europe Pacific Express Service


Swire Shipping's Europe Pacific Express service is a regular and reliable transhipment service connecting Northern Europe and the Mediterranean region with ports in New Caledonia, Fiji, Vanuatu, the Samoa's, Tahiti, Wallis and Futuna, Tonga and the Federated States of Micronesia.

Through our hub in Singapore, we also have frequent on carriage connections to all major ports in Papua New Guinea and the Solomon Islands. We can also offer services to Australian and New Zealand ports served with transhipment in Singapore.

Our weekly departures from Le Havre to Noumea in New Caledonia have a through transit time of only 40 days on average. From the North West Continent the transit time to Lae and Port Moresby is approximately 35 days.



Service Frequency


Weekly departures from Northern & Southern ports in Europe with transhipment over Singapore to final destination in the Pacific for containers. We also offer regular departures ex Europe using the services of the main liner break-bulk and RoRo operators.



Service Benefits

Fast-competitve transit times and a reliable weekly sailing frequency

* Competitive transit times and reliable weekly sailing frequency
* Express service routing to meet the requirements of New Caledonian customers
* Extensive port coverage and seamless transhipment in Singapore
* Providing a full range of equipment, including general-purpose and refrigerated containers, open top and open side containers, 20' and 40' flat racks
* The ability to carry shipments of IMO and OOG cargo

* Specialists in the carriage of project shipments, construction and earth moving equipment, vehicles and break-bulk/conventional parcels.

* Proven track record with over 10 years' experience in transhipment and taking advantage of our experienced agency network throughout

Calling
Major ports of loading are: Helsinki, Copenhagen, Aarhus, Gothenburg, Stockholm, Hamburg, Bremerhaven, Felixstowe, Southampton, Immingham, Thamesport, Rotterdam, Antwerp and Le Havre, Fos, Naples, Genoa, Livorno, La Spezia, Porto Maghera,
Hi Rabaul,

Palm Oil is now PNG's largest agricultural export with the European Union including the UK being the main market.
This product is shipped in tankers with Stolt vessels being seen regularly in ports around the country.

In 2012 Palm Oil accounted for 60% of all PNG agricultural exports with Coffee at 25%, Cocoa at 9% and Coconut products (Oil and Copra at 5%). Worldwide demand for Copra has declined considerably over recent years with Soy products taking over much of Copra's previous markets.
Most coconut products production is now undertaken by small landholders as many of the old plantations are taken over by the Palm Oil industry.

Coffee, Cocoa and Copra is still shipped in bags loaded in containers and Consort Express Lines services a wide number of ports throughout PNG as well as services to and from Townsville in Australia.
Consort is owned by Steamships Trading which in turn is a subsidiary of Swires.

As a rugged and remote country with little road and no rail infrastructure PNG has a very "vibrant" shipping industry with a wide variety of owners
and vessels serving the nation via small and larger ports with varying degrees of facilities.

Cheers,
Wantok
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  #12  
Old 18th December 2014, 16:07
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Alan Rawlinson Alan Rawlinson is offline
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Bank Line cargoes 1979

Stumbled on a bunch of old Bank Line magazines which include an insert of ' Ships Movements' ( See below)

The number of ships have reduced to 25 (from the 50 or so in the 50's) but still a great variety of worldwide ports.

P.S. The attachment can be enlarged in Picasa or similar for reading.
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File Type: jpg 1-PC180032.JPG (23.9 KB, 102 views)

Last edited by Alan Rawlinson; 18th December 2014 at 16:20..
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  #13  
Old 18th December 2014, 17:12
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Alistair Macnab Alistair Macnab is offline  
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ex-Bank Line Cargoes......

Who would have thought to pick up cross trades like India to South America? Who would have thought to offer a passenger ship service between Calcutta and East, South and West Africa? Who would have had the audacity to mix bulk parcels with liner cargo? Who would have been happy with one-way liner services coupled with tramp cargoes in a complex trading pattern that could not be easily duplicated? Who would have been in on the development of oil bunkers to replace coal? Who would have even thought of a South Pacific liner strategy when no one even knew where these islands were?

All these questions can only be answered and acted upon by an excetionally gifted entrepreneur with a global view.

We worked for him!
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  #14  
Old 18th December 2014, 20:56
Andy Lavies Andy Lavies is offline  
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A majority of people still have no idea where the islands are. Clever little chaps we once were to find our way to and amongst them.
Andy
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  #15  
Old 21st December 2014, 15:19
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A very gifted entrepreneur Alistair and it's a pity there isn't one like him now. It was one of the joys of working for Weirs that you never knew where you'd be at any given time. When the house magazine was at the top of its game I used to spend a lot of time (when not working of course) perusing the fleet list and the various liner and charter services they were all on - amazing coverage of the globe.
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  #16  
Old 2nd September 2015, 12:51
rabaul rabaul is offline  
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Taken from today's Lloyds List - Swire's are increasing their service to PNG - Lae - Swire Shipping has increased the frequency of its services to and from ports in Southeast Asia and Australasia.
Swire Shipping raises multipurpose liner service frequencies in Southeast Asia, Australia and New Zealand
SINGAPORE-based Swire Shipping has increased the number of trips made by its liner services to and from ports in Southeast Asia and Australasia.
The company’s Trans-Tasman route, which serves New Zealand and Australia, will provide a 15-day frequency, while there will be 12 additional trips to Brisbane direct from New Zealand.
The liner shipping firm will also host six direct sailings each month between Brisbane and Lae, Papua New Guinea, up from four previously. Additionally, Swire Shipping will bring back a regular service linking Brisbane to key ports in the region including that of the Philippines, Thailand and Singapore.
“These enhancements to our services allow us to provide our customers with greater frequency, significantly improved transit times and enhance our network coverage across the region,” said Jeremy Sutton, Swire Shipping general manager for Liner Trades.
In July the company launched an express service between north Asia, Papua New Guinea and Australia named the North Asia Express.
- still cargo to be transported and money to be made ...
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  #17  
Old 2nd September 2015, 17:53
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Cargo Liner Services.....

I am so glad that someone made a Bank Line entry as it was nearly one month since the last one! Today's topic is quite a good one and has revived questions that many of us previously addressed over the last 30 years. The only conclusion I have reached is that there were no entrepreneurs left at Andrew Weirs and even the Hon. Vincent Weir has died and left the rump of the Andrew Weir legacy to the 4th. Inverforth who is merely a Director of an investment and insurance company.

My new book, which is eagerly searching for a publisher, examines the British Merchant Navy as a whole and the effect of containerization.I have concluded that with the 20,000+ 'platforms' now becoming the end result of the container boom, the seeds for further expansion have been sown. I have read that the -5,000 teu ships about 15 years old are about to be converted into combination container-project-ro-ro-unit load-bulk ships by the big container lines. What does that look to you? Why, it's the re-invention of the flexible breakbulk cargo liner of old! Who would have thunk it?

The forward strategy of the big chaps is to lift cargoes which CANNOT be containerized and to become all carriers to all shippers. What a strategy! HOW clever! Ocean carriage reduced eventually to one line, one monopoly, based in a small European country that seems to have all the entrepreneurs and ideas.

Mind you, I have not written a polemic but a carefully researched account of how the containerization movement has finally reached it's goal and will now move into the only areas of ocean shipping that is has not already conquered. Where is the like of Andrew Weir now that we really need him? The last quarter of the 19th. Century was truly the last time British ingenuity flourished!
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Last edited by Alistair Macnab; 2nd September 2015 at 17:56.. Reason: fat fingers.
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  #18  
Old 2nd September 2015, 21:04
John Dryden John Dryden is offline  
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I suppose it boils down to getting the necessities from North Asia(sic)China rather than London and the Continent.Don,t see any container lifts in PM and Lae so they just put the stuff in containers and lift 'em out.
Ahha bet they don,t get as much Scottish shortbread,Christmas cakes and whisky as they used to!
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  #19  
Old 3rd September 2015, 04:40
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I am under the impression that the Bank Line of whom you speak is out of business?

For sometime I have been noticing Dutch ships with names like Vikingbank, currently anchored off Duluth MN, see attached AIS screen grab.

http://www.duluthharborcam.com/

AIS at the bottom of the page.

Attached: VIKINGBANK.jpg (87.6 KB)

Greg Hayden
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File Type: jpg VIKINGBANK.jpg (87.6 KB, 26 views)
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  #20  
Old 10th September 2015, 16:25
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John Dryden - I well remember London dockers in Millwall Docks sitting behind the shed munching away on Dundee Fruitcake, pilfered before loading on to Avonbank in 1970 on New Guinea Outward Service. As 3rd mate after reporting it I was 'advised' not to go on deck for the rest of that day! I believe Clem Mossop sorted it out eventually.

Kewel Dude I think you'll find that Bank Line is very much 'out of business', although the Weir family are involved in investment and other business. Any ship with the suffix BANK is not likely to be a Weir owned vessel, unless someone in the family has had a 'road to Damascus' moment and rekindled their interest in shipping. Can but hope. Thanks for the link though.
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Old 10th September 2015, 19:52
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Attached two images

Vikingbank1.jpg (104.5 KB)
Vikingbank2.jpg (64.5 KB)
20140618-DuluthMN.jpg (160.8 KB)

Vikingbank entering Duluth Minnesota September 7, 2015.

Pictures by Ken Newham of Duluth Shipping News

http://duluthshippingnews.com/

Ken writes that this is a Dutch company but I cannot read her hailing port since the pilot boat is in the way. I have seen several different ships on Ken's and Dennis O'Hara's site with bank in their names.

http://www.duluthharborcam.com/

For those who have not visited the Port of Duluth Minnesota and Superior Wisconsin I include an aerial view taken by Denny O'Hara in 2014. The land mass at the top of the picture is Superior WI which shares the harbor.

Greg Hayden
Attached Images
File Type: jpg Vikingbank1.jpg (104.5 KB, 14 views)
File Type: jpg Vikingbank2.jpg (64.5 KB, 14 views)
File Type: jpg 20140618-DuluthMN.jpg (160.8 KB, 16 views)
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  #22  
Old 10th September 2015, 21:43
John Dryden John Dryden is offline  
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Dundee Fruitcake.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Waighty View Post
John Dryden - I well remember London dockers in Millwall Docks sitting behind the shed munching away on Dundee Fruitcake, pilfered before loading on to Avonbank in 1970 on New Guinea Outward Service. As 3rd mate after reporting it I was 'advised' not to go on deck for the rest of that day! I believe Clem Mossop sorted it out eventually.

Kewel Dude I think you'll find that Bank Line is very much 'out of business', although the Weir family are involved in investment and other business. Any ship with the suffix BANK is not likely to be a Weir owned vessel, unless someone in the family has had a 'road to Damascus' moment and rekindled their interest in shipping. Can but hope. Thanks for the link though.
Yes Waighty,same thing happened to me.Did two consecutive trips to PNG and on my first trip the mate, George Milne,a veteran pushing 60 years old noted my concern and told me to let them have it or they may spoil more cartons and anyway they will be full soon enough.
Exactly the same in Hamburg but there the dockers didn,t care for the shortbread and Dundee Cake and politely just had a bottle of something and drank it while they worked..although a few of them were half cut by the end of the shift the cargo was mostly intact and stowed well.
The cargo on that run was stowed so tight no matter what the sea was like it never shifted..maybe check the lashings on the cars every now and again.It did settle a bit though but I blame inferior dunnage!
Here,s a plan I made,1969,Olivebank to jog the memory.
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  #23  
Old 16th September 2015, 16:10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kewl dude View Post
Attached two images

Vikingbank1.jpg (104.5 KB)
Vikingbank2.jpg (64.5 KB)
20140618-DuluthMN.jpg (160.8 KB)

Vikingbank entering Duluth Minnesota September 7, 2015.

Pictures by Ken Newham of Duluth Shipping News

http://duluthshippingnews.com/

Ken writes that this is a Dutch company but I cannot read her hailing port since the pilot boat is in the way. I have seen several different ships on Ken's and Dennis O'Hara's site with bank in their names.

http://www.duluthharborcam.com/

For those who have not visited the Port of Duluth Minnesota and Superior Wisconsin I include an aerial view taken by Denny O'Hara in 2014. The land mass at the top of the picture is Superior WI which shares the harbor.

Greg Hayden
Greg,

Vikingbank is owned and operated by Royal Wagenborg a Dutch company - see link:

http://www.wagenborg.com/our-equipment/fleetlist

Mike
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  #24  
Old 16th September 2015, 16:17
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John,

Thanks for cargo plan extract - I've got a few of my old ones kicking around somewhere. As you said, Hamburg dockers were rather more interested in alcoholic cargo than cake! Worst case I saw of drunk dockers was 1967 at Southampton when a cadet in Ben Line - one bloke had drunk so much cargo brand whisky that on reaching the top of the coaming (old style low coamings and hatchboards) he slipped and fell backwards into the lower old landing on top of an Austin Mini that had been loaded earlier as a top-off on bagwork. The car was pretty much a write-off but he was fine medically speaking, not a mark on him. The dockers threatened to strike the next day if he was fired!
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