The BP 42's Duchess class - Ships Nostalgia
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The BP 42's Duchess class

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  #1  
Old 13th May 2011, 11:51
david freeman david freeman is offline  
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The BP 42's Duchess class

Something in my mind says there was only 2 of this class. A feature I remember of them (All Though I never sailed on a 42) was the unusal 4 tanks across and some 11 or 12 tanks in the length. I think 44 tanks in all. They were built with unusal tank arrangement, and wonder if they were buit for RAS under a naval subsidy, but managed and run by BP . The Two Ships the Duchess and the Destiny???

Last edited by david freeman; 13th May 2011 at 11:52.. Reason: reread-edit
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  #2  
Old 13th May 2011, 14:35
Lanzabry Lanzabry is offline  
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Hi David. From what I remember there were 6 of this class, Ambassador,Destiny,Duchess,Judge,Power,Statesman. And yes they were 4 x 12 tanks. I was on the Statesman with their favourite run Mina--Aden. Toooo many valves :-)

Joe
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  #3  
Old 13th May 2011, 17:10
chrishandel chrishandel is offline  
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That name British Statesman, brings back terrible memories. Lost anchors, oil spills, holes in the ship's side, things going bang in the engine room and all sorts of other things.
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  #4  
Old 14th May 2011, 03:35
Lanzabry Lanzabry is offline  
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I agree chrishandle she had a very eventful life-- but wasn't the accommodation great! I think it was 1966 or 67 I was on her. A real fine looking tanker in her day.
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  #5  
Old 15th May 2011, 03:33
Tony Maskell Tony Maskell is offline  
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I sailed on the British Duchess in 1962 as 2/O and R. Cole as Master, then British Statesman in 1964 as XC/O, with H.K. Willis as Master' calling at Santos and Durban as well as 4 trips to Little Aden, my wife was with me on this occaision. Then the British Destiny in in 1967 as C/O, MAster J. Walters paying off in Genoa and flying home. Possibly the nicest looking ships built for BP and the accommodation was excellent
Tony Maskell

Last edited by Tony Maskell; 15th May 2011 at 03:40.. Reason: spelling!
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  #6  
Old 17th May 2011, 06:07
george jackson george jackson is offline  
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I was J/E on the Statesman, joined at Harland's, Belfast, did trials and maiden voyage and followed up doing the same on the Power. Both great ships.
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  #7  
Old 17th May 2011, 10:36
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GeorgeM13 GeorgeM13 is offline  
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Add the Prestige to the list. Sailed on her as an N/C, biggest bugbear for me was the IG system or at least the testing. Also on the Power as 3/O. Fine ships
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  #8  
Old 17th May 2011, 10:46
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eriskay eriskay is offline  
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First trip J/E on British Power in 1964 (11 months) then again as 4/E in 1965/6.

Served as 3/E on Industry and certainly think the 42s were better than the 32s.
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  #9  
Old 18th May 2011, 12:22
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paul0510 paul0510 is offline  
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Did three trips on the Destiny as SenNavApp, 3/O and 2/O, '69-72. Nice ships, tricky to steer when 3 feet by the head as was fairly usual leaving the Gulf. 11 down, 4 across kept you on your toes as well! And 6 weeks BM-Kharg in summer was a dream for the bronzy freaks
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  #10  
Old 23rd May 2011, 02:11
holystone holystone is offline  
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I was 3/O on the British Judge from Dec 1962 - July 63, I agree with others here, the accommodation was the very best at the time, maybe ever. They were great looking ships compared to the all aft steel box rubbish we see today. The runs were boring, Gulf to Europe with fast turn rounds, so I bailed out after 6 months, went back to the 16K Bird class clean oil ships. Much better runs. The Captain on Judge was R T Williams, I think he lived in Reading. I can't recall the other mates names but I do have some photos of a ship board party that I'll post. I have posted several Judge photos in my SN photo album.
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  #11  
Old 24th May 2011, 21:50
mpkk mpkk is offline
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David,
Seem to remember that two of the class, Duchess and one other, were built to work with the RN as and when required.
They were built with bigger boilers/burners? - I,m no engineer so stand to be corrected, and needed to be fitted with a 5 bladed propeller to achieve a speed of 20+ knots.
I personally did not experience this but was told that when running with the mods the vibration was horrific.

Sailed on the Judge as 3/0 - Capt Alan Davies
Sailed on the Duchess as 2/0 - Capt Jim Picken.

Jon
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  #12  
Old 25th May 2011, 05:14
Graham Wallace Graham Wallace is offline  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mpkk View Post
David,
Seem to remember that two of the class, Duchess and one other, were built to work with the RN as and when required.
They were built with bigger boilers/burners? - I,m no engineer so stand to be corrected, and needed to be fitted with a 5 bladed propeller to achieve a speed of 20+ knots.
I personally did not experience this but was told that when running with the mods the vibration was horrific.

Sailed on the Judge as 3/0 - Capt Alan Davies
Sailed on the Duchess as 2/0 - Capt Jim Picken.

Jon
Both the Valour and Courage were built to specifications for higher speed. I was told they did vibrate badly and fuel consumption was horrendous. I know a few who were aboard when they gave them a "try out".
I did not know that 2 later vessels were also built to exceed normal requirements.

Graham
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  #13  
Old 25th May 2011, 06:03
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I was in the Judge and the Statesman, lovely ships. I was in the Statesman for her collision at Flushing in Dec 68.
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  #14  
Old 25th May 2011, 08:47
david freeman david freeman is offline  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Graham Wallace View Post
Both the Valour and Courage were built to specifications for higher speed. I was told they did vibrate badly and fuel consumption was horrendous. I know a few who were aboard when they gave them a "try out".
I did not know that 2 later vessels were also built to exceed normal requirements.

Graham
As I was not a Deck officer and never sailed on these ships. I wondered if they were buit with 2 cargo vavle seperation between each tank, and hence as a RAS ship could carried a variety of fuels for the navy. The 19's and 16 birdies where I think two valve seperation per cargo space? I may be out of my tree here, and back where I belong in the pit?
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  #15  
Old 26th May 2011, 20:21
clarkie59 clarkie59 is offline  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Graham Wallace View Post
Both the Valour and Courage were built to specifications for higher speed. I was told they did vibrate badly and fuel consumption was horrendous. I know a few who were aboard when they gave them a "try out".
I did not know that 2 later vessels were also built to exceed normal requirements.

Graham
Certainly not the Duchess, she spent most of the time broken down when I sailed on her. Pissed of Tony Lowson the C/E no end it did!
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  #16  
Old 26th May 2011, 20:35
david freeman david freeman is offline  
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Originally Posted by clarkie59 View Post
Certainly not the Duchess, she spent most of the time broken down when I sailed on her. Pissed of Tony Lowson the C/E no end it did!
. I believe I meet Tony Lawson later on in life after he had swollowed the anchor. He was making training films for the COS and FED with his film company= Who's name escapes me. Most of the films where on tanker practice and ER Safety? It may be The Tony I knew? who was a NE Coaster from the TYne Area.
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  #17  
Old 26th May 2011, 20:43
clarkie59 clarkie59 is offline  
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Originally Posted by david freeman View Post
. I believe I meet Tony Lawson later on in life after he had swollowed the anchor. He was making training films for the COS and FED with his film company= Who's name escapes me. Most of the films where on tanker practice and ER Safety? It may be The Tony I knew? who was a NE Coaster from the TYne Area.
Thats the guy. Sailed with him years later on the Scientist. He actually remembered me. Probably since i over indulged in Sembawang drydock as a J/E on the Duchess!
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  #18  
Old 26th May 2011, 23:50
Graham Wallace Graham Wallace is offline  
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Originally Posted by clarkie59 View Post
Thats the guy. Sailed with him years later on the Scientist. He actually remembered me. Probably since i over indulged in Sembawang drydock as a J/E on the Duchess!
Tony Lowson was my first CE when I joined the Empress in Sept 1958, he left in early 1959 and John Sutton took over, later to be promoted Commodore CE.
Tony was great for EA's ,I guess he was a recent promotion to CE, he looked so young. Not good with an older Scottish 2E.

I came across him in early 2000's, no email or phone #, but I could possibly still get hold of him, though he must be getting on in age now.

Graham
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  #19  
Old 28th May 2011, 23:13
sparks69 sparks69 is offline  
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Graham
If you do see Tony Lowson please give him my best wishes. I was sparks on the Trader (I think) and we went to Singapore for mega repairs which he "supervised" - great bloke - even got the A/C working. "I am not sailing on a ship with a bloody great hole in the plates on the flying bridge !"
(Singaporean fitter fell overboard and unfortunatly drowned during repairs)
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  #20  
Old 29th May 2011, 23:35
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Interesting thread ...yup the 4 tanks across was areal pain ... and for no reason other than an extra longitudinal bulkhead for strength, don't forget these were BP's first attampt at big ships so belt and braces. There was no two valve separation as some have speculated, no need ... crude only in that era. Only the Valour and Courage were built with RN requirements and that was for speed only ... cargo handling was exactly the same as all the others.

I did 6 months on the 'Power' and we Nav Apps did ALL the tank cleaning .. 3 x Mina Aden then home via top off at Banias ..(Nightmare) home to I o G then back out for another dose of Kharg Aden before straight home to dear old I o G.

The real pain in cargo work was stripping with the normal ring main system complicated by the two centre tanks ....getting the list for draining at the righttime and so on.

We did not have IG ... didnt know they were retro fitted even???

I see Jon sailed with Jim Picken ... great master .... no comment on the other one !!!!!
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  #21  
Old 3rd June 2011, 00:07
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GeorgeM13 GeorgeM13 is offline  
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Hi,
The Prestige was the only one with IG it was being trialled I think. Also she was not completed until 1962 some 3 or 4 years after the others the addition of the IG being rumoured as the cause for this.
With regard to the Valour and Courage, cargo-wise what differentiated them were the double shut-off valves on the cargo tanks which led to confusion as some thought they had ring mains. The Valour was on white oil duty both times I sailed on her.
Cheers George

Last edited by GeorgeM13; 3rd June 2011 at 00:11.. Reason: Bad English
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  #22  
Old 28th June 2011, 22:25
MikeSmith MikeSmith is offline  
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I sailed on the Duchess as first trip cadet in 1973. I think the "Old Man" was Frank Frost and the Mate was Len McGeoch. Both the ship and th eMate made a big impression on me - but then you'd hope that they would on a first trip cadet!!
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  #23  
Old 1st July 2011, 02:14
holystone holystone is offline  
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Duchess Class

Can you recall if they all had gyro repeaters on the bridge wings. I think we could take bearings without going up to the monkey island on the Judge in 62.
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  #24  
Old 2nd July 2011, 03:07
Tony Maskell Tony Maskell is offline  
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Of the 44,000 dwt BP ships, the Ambasssador, Prestige, Destiny, Statesman, Power, Duchess & Judge, they all had bridge wing gyro repeaters. On one occasion when heading up the Persian Gulf at about 2.30am we were hit by a viollent hail storm which damaged the metal covers on both bridge wing repeaters as well as the repeater on the monkey island.
Tony Maskell
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  #25  
Old 16th July 2011, 21:20
gra_am gra_am is offline  
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Hello All,
I had the ' Judge in 1972 and ' Ambassador in 1974. I believe this class of ship was built to sail through the Suez Canal fully loaded. Built as 42s they were reclassified as 44s.
The ' Ambassador underwent a major drydock when the Suez was due to re-open. Two months in Skaramanga de sludging the permanent ballast tanks, and other tank repairs. she was one of my favourite ships, great crew too.
She eventually sank in the South China Sea, everyone stepping off onto lifeboats.
I'd love to hear the full story if someone out there knows
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