Ships Nostalgia banner

1 - 20 of 22 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
71 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I sailed as AB on the final voyage of the Fourah Bay although most of the 11 month voyage was spent at anchor outside Lagos.
we paid off in Hull and she was sold to a Mexican shipping company but still manned by Ocean Fleets.
My watch mate was Terry Scell who I believe still holds the record for the longest peace time voyage without going home 3 yrs 3 mths this was on the M/V Dumurra I did three voyages while he was still there.. He was 21 when he joined and 25 when he finaly paid off in Amsterdam.

I also sailed on the Ascanious when the football team went ashore to play a game against a german ship..we were in a bus accident with a train on the way to the game. The bus driver was killed minor injuries to both crews. We went onto play the game but lost 1-0
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1 Posts
I joined the Fourah Bay as Junior Engineer in Hull when I left her a few weeks later she had been renamed the Magda Josefina
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,507 Posts
I did many coasting voyages on Fourah Bay and deep sea other 'F' boats in the 60's and 70's. My last voyage with Elders was 2 Eng on the Forcados 1978.

Thumbnail of Fourah Bay
 

Attachments

·
Registered
Joined
·
71 Posts
Magda Josefina

I was Senior Lecky on the final voyage of this ship when Ocean Fleets officers were manning the vessel on behalf of Trans Maritime Mexicana.
I joined her in New York on 14/02/80 and we finally paid off on 01/09/80 at Norfolk, Virginia naval shipyard whilst she was still in drydock. The ship was sold to Greeks.[=P]
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
487 Posts
It may be of interest to the above to learn that there is a 'Fourah Bay Association' run by Mike Thurman. They have a reunion in Liverpool each year and I understand it is well represented.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
10 Posts
I sailed on Fourah Bay in '71 as Cadet Engineer. Also on Dummura, Dalla, Forcados and several Glen and Blue flue ships. Left in '73.
Regards
Ian
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,264 Posts
Just checked the link - she looks awful in that livery!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3 Posts
Sailed on Fourah bay

I sailed on the Fourah bay in 1976 as a cadet engineer. It was my 2 nd. bay boat as my first one was the Tokeyo bay. joined in Middlesbourgh and did a 2 month trip down 2 west africa.
From
Pertius
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
12 Posts
Re Pertius- My first two trips were the opposite to yourself. My first was on the Fourah Bay, joining in Middlesborough in 1976 along with '******', cannot remember his proper name. My second trip was on the Tokyo Bay.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3 Posts
Fourah Bay October Lagos 1975

Back in 1975, I had hitch hiked across the Sahara desert, I was 22 years old at the time, I’d arrived in Niger the country above Nigeria, after being dropped off in Zinder, I had again hitched to the border with Nigeria only to be refused entry due to the fact I had no visa!

So then it was trip to Niamey to obtain a visa, then back again into Nigeria! Arriving in Kano in the early evening I met a local guy who put me up for the night, the following day he put me on a bus to Lagos.

I arrived in Lagos early morning, and having only a vague idea of where Nigeria was and what I was going to do I head to the docks, Apapa!

The port authorities let me enter the wharf area upon condition of surrendering my camera! By now I had decided to try & “work a passage” on a boat anywhere!

I worked my way along the wharf going up gangplanks and asking about working a passage, the first boat was I think a Norwegian boat & the guy in the galley gave me some coffee & fresh bread rolls for breakfast,
Unfortunately I couldn’t get passage with them, next boat along! I couldn’t believe it when I read the name Fourah Bay, and below, the words Liverpool! Coming from Liverpool I thought yes!

I walked up the gangplank & the first person I encountered was I believe the First Officer, I politely enquired if there was any chance of working a passage, “No, get off the boat! “

As I walked back down the gangplank, a head appeared over the side, “eh where ya going, where ya from? Liverpool I said, “Ok come back on board,” I explained I’d been told to leave, “ahh ignore him”

All the crew were scouser’s! I couldn’t believe it, I told them what I had been up to & they said, “You can stay on board with us!” anyway I eventually stayed on board for about 5 days! Going out with the lads to play football at the Apapa country club,

Another day going into Lagos as one of the guys needed to go to a medical centre, one of the guys was a bloke called Freddie Birkett I think, he’d lived in Fazakerley where I was from and knew some of the people I knew!
The last I heard of him, he’d been done for possession of cannabis! Freddie had moved over to Birkenhead, another guy whose name escapes me but took me under his wing lived in Belle Vale, I was made an honorary member of the ships club & give the nickname The Tramper! I still have the membership card with my fingerprint on dated, it’s a little card with the words , Bistro, Disco, Casino, & I am number 39,

My sponsors signatures are A,J, Higgin, W, Granger, Colin Leydon, dated 12 October 1975,

One night we had a party and invited the crew of a Scandinavian boat over which had a few female members!

During my stay we discussed my options for onward travel, perhaps I could stow away in the anchor room! Nah, some other blokes I met from a Palm line ship said you could take a chance with us , but you’d have to hide in the life boat, where’s that I asked ? up there they pointed to a tiny little boat swinging high in the sky! I’ll pass I said.

After about 5 days the first officer who knew I was on board approached me & said, we are pulling out in a day or two & I don’t want to see you on board, Ok I said , point taken!

The lads told me to try the British Embassy for help, which I did but they weren’t interested in helping me, so I took a taxi to the airport & thought I’ll have to head home!, it was the logical thing to do, I didn’t have a clue where or what I was going to do!

I had just enough money to buy a one-way ticket to Rome! Which left me with £15! To get from Rome to Liverpool!

And it was trying to leave Nigeria, which introduced me to the world of baksheesh or dash as I believe its called in Nigeria!

As my turn came to present my passport, the guy looks at it, No yellow fever vaccination certificate he says, I replied I didn’t have one when I entered the country!

You can’t leave without one! This then resulted in me having a “private audience” with said passport guy in which he asked, “what do you have for me” it took a while for it to dawn on me that I needed to pay him! , I had a £10 & a £5 note scrunched up in my pocket, fortunately for me, I pulled out the fiver!

Back in the queue again, he beckoned me forward, & duly stamped my passport no problems this time!

I landed in Rome & then hitched it back to Liverpool arriving home with nine pence in my pocket! After borrowing ten quid from another young bloke I’d met hitch hiking in Italy, we duly hitched all the way back to London together!

So that was my experience of the Fourah Bay!
A name I’ll never forget!,
“Some ships are fast, but we are express”
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3 Posts
Thanks! my dad was in the Royal Navy during the war & got the DSM but we could never find out for exactly what, we know a little about it & tried to get info but the MOD couldn't really help,

My older brother was in the merch and was cook/chef/baker, he was on the Blue Funnel boats & regularly meets up with the old Blue Funnel boys in Liverpool
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
487 Posts
Hi Tramper.
Interesting mail re your experience.
One of your ‘sponsors’, John Higgins, is still in Lagos.
Just finished telling him about your mail and he remembers your stay onboard.
 
1 - 20 of 22 Posts
Top