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I was with Brocklebanks from 1957 to 1961 as Deck Apprentice and latterly as uncert 4/O.
The ships I sailed on were as follows. Mahout (1925 vintage) from October 1957, two full voyages, remember Captain John Watson Ross and the Third Mate was Bob Kingston (Robert E Kingston, from Dunlaoghaire) Norman Seagar was also apprentice on first trip, tragically suffered fatal accident following trip on Manipur and was buried in Colombo Cemetary. Then the dear old Malabar where I remember my co apprentice was Phil Brimley and also the R/O or was he 2/R/O Dave Courtenay, a little Manchunian with an immense knowledge of films and cinema. Then the Masirah with Captain Stan Broughton, Then Macharda and Matheran both with Captain Maclaren. Maskelia was next with Captain Evans, then the Marwarri with Cylclone Saxty and finally the Maidan in 1961 with John Watson Ross. That was my last trip with Brocks in 1961. Remember many names and characters and experiences. In particular, taking Tamil refugees from Colombo to Jaffna (800 on deck), following nine weeks at anchor off Colombo; good parties in Calcutta and New Orleans. Anybody remember Pam Ritchin and her family in Calcutta, or Sandra Lee Smith and Carol Laurent in New Orleans.
 

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Norman Segar - Apprentice Manipur

There was a letter in the March 2006 edition of Sea Breezes by Norman Segar's younger brother David seeking any information about the fatal accident to Norman on Manipur in May or June 1958. The family believes that 17 year old Norman on his second trip to sea was given the task of inspecting a cargo hold on the day that Manipur had sailed from Colombo.
One of the deck officers seeing an opening in the hatch ordered it to be battened down. About 3 to 4 hours latter Norman was discovered to be missing. A search revealed him lying at the bottom of the hold having fractured his skull. Manipur returned to Colombo where Norman died in hospital 3 days later without regaining consciousness.
The Segar family can be contacted by e-mail at [email protected]
 

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Sailed with you on the Mahout(1925) I joined her as they were finishing the conversion from coal burner to oil burner in Glasgow. Standing by was ? Woods mate and Alex Finlay 2nd eng I had quite a time there, home every night. I remember Bob Kingston we used to have a beer or two at midnight. You must also remember Nimbus the dog that was being taken to Calcutta, Bob Kingston and I both had grown beards and soon as th dog seen either of us it took off howling to the Chief or the Mates cabin. J. McCallum was Chief, 2nd eng Ian Aiton , 3rd eng Brian Cottier , 5th eng Harry King and I was 4th eng. The next trip was on the Marrwarri as 3rd eng and remember hearing about the tragic accident to the apprentice on the Manipur and trying to put a face to the name.
I notice we sailed on quite a number of the same ships although not at the same time.
Cheers.
Bob Frizzell
 

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I was on the Maskeliya with "Evans of Gan", a great ship 1959 to 1962. They called him that because he was so pleased with himself, making Gan on his first trip. I was 5th engineer and eventually J/3rd engineer.
Trevor
 

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I guess I sailed with you on the Maskeliya as I sailed on her from Aug/59 to Feb/60 as 3rd eng. I am having difficulty remembering someone named Trevor. Ronnie Iliffe was chief, George Snaith was 2nd eng and had his wife with him on this trip. I think that was the trip that Ken Convery left her. As you say she was a great ship.
Cheers.
Bob Frizzell.
 

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I suppose I sailed with some of you also, as I was a fist trip app on the Maskeliya Sept 61 to June 62, with Tubby Evans, Master. This was the trip that we "opened" the port of Assab and Tubby got a medal from Haile Selassie when he visited the ship. Anyone remember that?
Stan
 

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Hi Bob,
I remember you and George, my wife coasted with us. George had a big round smiling face and everyone got on well. I was transfered to the Maskelya in Calcutta 1959, because I got scolded on the Macharda a ship from hell, that's why I stayed on the Maskeliya for so long. I wish I could thank the fiver who took my place. I have a great picture of her posted at British Merchant Navy site.
Trevor Walker
 

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Trevor you must have jinxed me on the Maskeliya. After leaving the Maskeliya I went for my 2nd's and then to the Mangla as Sen 3rd. After coasting it and a deep sea trip I went as 2nd on the Masud(The old Southwick) on the coast, yes I finished up on the Macharda as 2nd deep sea. The ship wasn't all that bad but the engineers were mostly new to the company and the chief was Johnny Bain, enough said. The worst trip I did with Brocks.
Cheers.
Bob F.
 

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A.G.Greenwood said:
I was with Brocklebanks from 1957 to 1961 as Deck Apprentice and latterly as uncert 4/O.
The ships I sailed on were as follows. Mahout (1925 vintage) from October 1957, two full voyages, remember Captain John Watson Ross and the Third Mate was Bob Kingston (Robert E Kingston, from Dunlaoghaire) Norman Seagar was also apprentice on first trip, tragically suffered fatal accident following trip on Manipur and was buried in Colombo Cemetary. Then the dear old Malabar where I remember my co apprentice was Phil Brimley and also the R/O or was he 2/R/O Dave Courtenay, a little Manchunian with an immense knowledge of films and cinema. Then the Masirah with Captain Stan Broughton, Then Macharda and Matheran both with Captain Maclaren. Maskelia was next with Captain Evans, then the Marwarri with Cylclone Saxty and finally the Maidan in 1961 with John Watson Ross. That was my last trip with Brocks in 1961. Remember many names and characters and experiences. In particular, taking Tamil refugees from Colombo to Jaffna (800 on deck), following nine weeks at anchor off Colombo; good parties in Calcutta and New Orleans. Anybody remember Pam Ritchin and her family in Calcutta, or Sandra Lee Smith and Carol Laurent in New Orleans.
I sailed with Phil Brimley on the ASHBANK in 1964. He was Third Mate and myself a apprentice. The next and last time I saw him was in Auckland when he was Second Mate on Waitaki (USSCO) At the time I was Third Mate on Kaimai(USSCO).John Milne
 

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Great to hear from you Bob, I must have been 5th and 4th with you, should remember me I must have been the only none drinker in Brocks. Bain was the chief when I was on Macharda, as you say enough said. I sailed with Brocks till 1966 and went back to university to get another degree, and went into teaching. Are you in Canada?
I ended up as Chairperson of the Great Lakes School of Marine Technology, combining both careers. We trained the engineers and navigation officers for the lakers and east coast companies.
Cheers
Trevor
 

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I am still having problems remembering you Trevor but I guess we will put this down to old age!!! I didn't think there were any non-drinkers with Brocks, I am sure you had to put up with some comments. After the Macharda I landed up on the Mandasor with Bob McCallion as chief, done one trip on her and pulled the pin on Brocks. Went with Ellerman for a period, but the children were getting older and she who must be obeyed was wanting me to come ashore, so you know who won. I am retired in St Albert, Alberta after 25 years in Power Station management, I managed to stay with steam up till the last few years and then I took over the companys gas turbines and recip engine plants. Now I just keep spoiling the grandchildren.
Cheers,
Bob F.
 

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I started as a student apprentice with the Central Electricity Generating Board, National Service was my reason for sea as I could stay with engineering and get married. John Bain didn't like that "National Service dodger, lowest form of animal life laddie". Should have known I was in for a rough trip on the Macharda. Did a short stint as a control engineer when I came ashore in 66, waiting for the start of university courses. Coasted a lot with Shell as a 2nd and Chief, during university holidays to pay the bills, being married with 3 children.
Alberta is doing very well, like you I'm a happy grandad these days. I live close to Ottawa, I came here a lot, meeting with Transport Canada for our Marine certifications etc.
Trevor W
 

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Bob_F said:
Trevor you must have jinxed me on the Maskeliya. After leaving the Maskeliya I went for my 2nd's and then to the Mangla as Sen 3rd. After coasting it and a deep sea trip I went as 2nd on the Masud(The old Southwick) on the coast, yes I finished up on the Macharda as 2nd deep sea. The ship wasn't all that bad but the engineers were mostly new to the company and the chief was Johnny Bain, enough said. The worst trip I did with Brocks.
Cheers.
Bob F.
Johnny Bain......enough said he had a passion about changing turbo blowers on the Luminous (late 60,s) I don't think he had a clue about what he was trying to achieve and sadly he knew the 2nd eng was a real diesel man who mostly disagreed but John boy was the chief and I believe he become a super later on. I met him at the Brocks reunion , he was a different character then....john g
 

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John that was typical Johnny Bain, had a passion about doing certain things that had no benefit to the operation of whatever was his pet project was at the time. Before I went deep sea with him I had heard all sorts of stories about him. I didn't think anyone could be as bad as that, how wrong I was. All the engineeers were going to complain when we had our end of voyage meeting with one of the superintendents. That was a laugh, they were all so glad to get the trip over with. I had heard he finished up as a super, I imagine same as in industry, move the problem upstairs.
Cheers.
Bob F.
 

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Bob_F said:
John that was typical Johnny Bain, had a passion about doing certain things that had no benefit to the operation of whatever was his pet project was at the time. Before I went deep sea with him I had heard all sorts of stories about him. I didn't think anyone could be as bad as that, how wrong I was. All the engineeers were going to complain when we had our end of voyage meeting with one of the superintendents. That was a laugh, they were all so glad to get the trip over with. I had heard he finished up as a super, I imagine same as in industry, move the problem upstairs.
Cheers.
Bob F.
Was that the same John Bain from Aberdeen that had his photo in Motor Ship advertising Rolls Roycve generators on Mahronda?
 

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Hi Jim,
Not sure where Johnny Bain came from, I thought he was from the western isles someplace. Was the picture of a heavy set, average height individual. After leaving the Macharda I tried to forget as much as possible about that trip.
Cheers.
Bob F.
 

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John Bain

John Bain was Chief Engineer on Luxor on my second trip on her in the late 60's. I seem to recall he came from the Western Isles but I am not too sure of that. I had nothing to do with him work-wise but I do recall two specific incidents about him. Luxor spent a wonderful but eye wateringly expensive 5 weeks in Taikoo dry dock in Hong Kong. We had access to the Taikoo club which was part of the massive dock structure and very pleasant it was too. After we had been there a while a couple of stories started to circulate of John causing some unpleasantness after a couple of jars and this developed further into refusing to pay for meals at local restaurants on some trumped up complaint. I only experienced it once and one of the engineers explained to me what would happen after he had eaten and sure enough he complained about something or other and got either a free or discounted meal.

The other incident involved our flight home on a chartered prop driven Britannia aircraft. This was going to be a very long haul (27 or 28 hours as it turned out) and when I got to the top of the aircraft steps John was standing there segregating officers to the front of the plane and all other hands to the back. Needless to say this caused some mutterings amongst a few of the lads heading for the aft end of the plane but John held his ground. He was to some extent proved right when a couple of the crew got very well oiled and one grappled with an air hostess whilst trying to open the door in mid flight. If I remember rightly a combination of the Bosun and John Bain thumped him.

He was indeed a very stocky man of average height and I can well imagine he was difficult to work with/for.
 

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Johnny Bain was from the Western Isles and was superintendent in London during the Trafalger House days.
I heard that he had a good position with the Highlands & Islands development Board after leaving Brocks .
 
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