AKA 'Harry Dick'. I've mentioned this ship elsewhere - the kids spat on the pilot as we passed under Tower Bridge. Also happy memories of the pub at Seaham Harbour opening up for sailing time, whatever the hour, and wallowing around off Flamborough Head in order to meet the time constraints of the 'Northeast Coast Agreement' (calling for a night alongside).
Also recall the Chief Engineer out on deck, berating the floating discos while we were tied up at Fulham Power Station: "Howay, ya f---ers, people're tryin' ter sleep here!" They just danced on, selfish gits!
When I was at South Shields Marine college in the early 1960s I was initially in digs on Westoe Road, between the pub and the dog track, with a Mrs Ennis. Her son was in the engine room on the flatties and was greatly enamoured of the job and the trade. The guy I was sharing with, Mike Holland of Blue Star, was up for his Mate's ticket. We could never understand the attraction of the ships or the run. Being home every few nights and weekends was not what we were looking for, and being aboard ship but never going further than Tilbury seemed a wasted opportunity.
Mike's parents ran a pub in Colchester and he later gave up going deep sea and worked for Trinity House, out of Harwich. We moved from Westoe Road up to the Lawe Top, where we were in digs with Linda Burns, the daughter of a retired Tyne Pilot, True Briton Burns. In his eighties, he was still active and loved to perform at parties with his fiddle. Linda's place was well known in 'Shields (some say infamous) but it was cheap and good fun. Can't think that such places would be tolerated today.
There were two Tyne pilots called True Briton Burn, the origional was born 19.5.1881 and died 09.10.1967. He was called True Briton as his father was piloting a ship called True Briton when he was born. The second True Briton was born 16.12.1904 and died 15.12.1974. I knew the younger True Briton as I was a Tyne Pilot apprentice from 1964 to 1968. he was never known by his first name always being refered to as T.B.Burn or Briton Burn.