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Mystic

The Mystic was built at Burntisland as were most of the Furness/Prince Line "Medy" boats. If you go to the Burntisland web site, there are several good pictures of her there - probably on completion and then going out for Sea Trials. There's also a nice shot of the Lancastrian Prince!
 

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Hi Geoff Allen &Peter Woodall
My name is David Robinson and I was on the Mystic in1968 on the trip to Aussi.
I was the cadet engineer who played the guitar and had his21 birthday on board whilst going past Cape Town on the way to Aussi.and the fire in Adalide.
Please post a reply
Dave
 

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Hi Durango. Captain Proctor who was in command from March 1960 until he retired in May 1963. Quote. I had a fine ship, no passengers, and full cargos out and home. The officers and men were excellent so she was a happy ship.
There you are someone thought you were a great bunch of lads!
 

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Hi Durango. Captain Proctor who was in command from March 1960 until he retired in May 1963. Quote. I had a fine ship, no passengers, and full cargos out and home. The officers and men were excellent so she was a happy ship.
There you are someone thought you were a great bunch of lads!
Hello Bill captain Procter was a good captain and she was a good ship I remember she was hand steering all the way even though we had an iron mike under canvas lashed to the wing of the bridge I don't think he was in any hurry to have it fitted great days all long gone best regards Dave .
 

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Capt.R.C. Proctor

Good Afternoon shipmates,
I haven't visited this site in years and while scrolling down the "Mystic"which I wrote about in June 2008,I read your comments on Capt.R C.Proctor OBE.He was a great ship Master,and looked after his apprentices very well.Did you know that he wrote a book entitled " Fifty years with the Prince Line"? published in 1967 by Arthur H Stockwell.I have a copy in my library and it makes nostalgic reading for someone of my age ,74,who went to sea in 1959 in time to see the end of an era before the BOX arrived to change it all.By 1969 I had passed Masters FG and opted to have a home life working on cross channel ferries.
 

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Hello Capt.Bob. I have a copy of the said book. My interest in Captain Proctor goes back to my school days and the British Ship Adoption Society. Captain Proctor was with the Prince Line and he corresponded with our school. I can remember the Head Master reading his letters to us at assembly.
In the acknowledgements of the book it is the latter of the schools mentioned.
Regards Bill
 

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Good morning to you all.
My son reminded me that I had cine film gathering dust, and I have at last had it 'digitised'. Wow, what happy memories.
I was on her as deck cadet in 1962 under Capt. Proctor, for 2 trips to OZ.
I am currently editing the film, and hope to post it on YouTube sometime fairly soon. I will post the link once it is done.
meanwhile, thank you all for your anecdotes, and stand by for questions if I need answers!
All the best, Bob Gardiner.
 

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If anyone out there is inerested my film is now finished and I have uploaded it to Youtube.
Search for Geoff Cushnet, and two films are available.
I would love to hear any comments from anyone who has the time.
All the best to you. Bob G.
 

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Hi Bob. I have just had a quick look at your Youtube posting I think your efforts are well worth while. Those of us who sailed to Australia in that era will remember it as it was, unlike now. The short clip of Captain Proctor was magical to me as he was the main correspondent when I was at school through The British Ship Adoption Society
 

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I was delighted to see the Mystic mentioned when I visited the site.
I was on her throught 1962 in my last year as a deck Apprentice.The others were Brian Kelly,Peter Kerpener,Jeremy Stanford,Bob Gardiner.
Master Capt R Proctor,Mate Ted Hoyle.2nd Mate Rog Blackburn,£rd Mate ? 4th Mate Brian Maflin.
C/E D.Graham Eng Cadets Donnie McLeod? Mel Griffiths.
The Mystic was a particularly happy ship.She had been trading to NZ before I joined but switched to Aussie when I was on her.We had a great football team run by Ron the r/o and were well known on the coast as a "Party Ship"
I regret that I didn't get back to her during the rest of my time with Furness,but a friend of mine Terry Griffiths was on her in about 1964.
look forward to your comments,

Bob Gray
Hi Bob. I'm not sure if you have seen my post, but I have just uploaded a film of our trip which might amuse you. It is actually a composite of two trips that I made with her.
If you're interested, it's on Youtube, under the name of Geoff Cushnet!
I would love to hear your views.
 

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A Mystic Meanderings

Good Evening Bob,
Hearing from you was a real "Blast from the Past."
I've had a quick look at the u tube film and will watch it completely as I only flicked through it.
One thing I didn't recall was calling at Colombo after leaving Aden.
I seem to remember you buying that cine camera with a Barclays Bank cheque from a Bum Boat man in Aden,which must have been a first.
I'll be in touch again and if you could contact me by e-mail we can catch up on 55years.
Bob ( Paddy) Gray
 

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Good Evening Bob,
Hearing from you was a real "Blast from the Past."
I've had a quick look at the u tube film and will watch it completely as I only flicked through it.
One thing I didn't recall was calling at Colombo after leaving Aden.
I seem to remember you buying that cine camera with a Barclays Bank cheque from a Bum Boat man in Aden,which must have been a first.
I'll be in touch again and if you could contact me by e-mail we can catch up on 55years.
Bob ( Paddy) Gray
Hi Bob.
Thanks ever so for your message.
I don't have an e-mail address for you, but mine is [email protected] and it would be lovely to hear from you.
I'm not sure about your reference to Colombo though, unless I made an error in the commentary!! My journal shows that on my first trip we visited Trincomalee outbound, and Galle homewoard bound, but missed out Ceylon on my second.
I'ld be glad of your comments though, especially any mistakes!!
I do look forward to hearing from you.
All the best, Bob G(ardiner).http://www.shipsnostalgia.com/images/icons/icon7.gif
 

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Very well done BobG/Geoff Cushnet, a wonderful film.
I was with Shaw Savill and Albion, just finishing my Apprenticeship as you were starting yours. I always regretted not taking more pictures of my life a sea, even though I did purchase a camera from the Aden bum boats. Now you have finally done it all for me. Many thanks.
My first trips in Alaric were almost exactly like yours in Mystic, same cargoes and virtually the same ports although Alaric and the other three 'A's always started and finished in London, and throughout my career I never did get to Adelaide.
Your film should remind all of our generation how extremely lucky we were to be at sea during the finest years of the British Merchant Navy. More time in port than actually at sea thanks to the cargo handling systems in use at the time, and nobody shooting or trying to torpedo us when we did leave port.
We were truly blessed, than you again for recording it for us.
 

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Very well done BobG/Geoff Cushnet, a wonderful film.
I was with Shaw Savill and Albion, just finishing my Apprenticeship as you were starting yours. I always regretted not taking more pictures of my life a sea, even though I did purchase a camera from the Aden bum boats. Now you have finally done it all for me. Many thanks.
My first trips in Alaric were almost exactly like yours in Mystic, same cargoes and virtually the same ports although Alaric and the other three 'A's always started and finished in London, and throughout my career I never did get to Adelaide.
Your film should remind all of our generation how extremely lucky we were to be at sea during the finest years of the British Merchant Navy. More time in port than actually at sea thanks to the cargo handling systems in use at the time, and nobody shooting or trying to torpedo us when we did leave port.
We were truly blessed, than you again for recording it for us.
Thank you for your post Alaric.
I'm so glad you enjoyed the film, which I enjoyed putting together.
Although I 'swallowed the anchor' in 1968 having got my master's, I have always looked back with great affection to my time at sea, both with Furness Withy and with the RFA.
I do so agree with you about our good fortune, and I still maintain that our generation have had the best of it really.
Did you have a look at 'Princes Playground', my other film?
It is an earlier attempt, before I began to get the hang of the editing software.
The films were gathering dust, forgotten, until a friend found them.
 

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Another excellent film Bob, this time to ports, other than Valetta, that I have not visited. You seem to have enjoyed a varied career, did you continue filming when you served with the RFA?
I hold Shaw Savill in high regard and was very happy to sail with them, but in hindsight I wish that I had left and joined other lines to see more of our world.
Like you, I had a relatively short seagoing career leaving in 1968 so never got to sail as Chief.
Thanks for posting these really interesting, now historic films.
 

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Another excellent film Bob, this time to ports, other than Valetta, that I have not visited. You seem to have enjoyed a varied career, did you continue filming when you served with the RFA?
I hold Shaw Savill in high regard and was very happy to sail with them, but in hindsight I wish that I had left and joined other lines to see more of our world.
Like you, I had a relatively short seagoing career leaving in 1968 so never got to sail as Chief.
Thanks for posting these really interesting, now historic films.
Thanks again Alaric, and I'm so glad that you enjoyed both films.
I still look back on my time with great fondness, and a sense of astonishment that I was actually PAID to visit all these places!
I discovered while being a Senior 2nd Mate in the RFA however, that I was not interested in becoming a 'Man Manger'. The idea of Chief or 'Old 'Man did not appeal.
I've had a whale of a time since though, so I have absolutely no regrets, (apart from not getting my Instructor's Rating as a Pilot, of course!) :sweat:
I still have footage to work on, some from a trip on Pacific Reliance to the States, and quite a bit of the RFA at work.
Unfortunately, the Pacific Reliance stuff is not as good as I had hoped, but may make something, and I need to find a 'thread' around which to 'hang' the RFA pictures.
I'm enjoying it, though, Very nostalgic.
I will let you know when anything new is posted.
All the best to you.
Bob G
 

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Hello again to all.
Just to let you know that I have now completed a film about Pacific Reliance, which I have also uploaded to Youtube.
If you are interested, search for Geoff Cushnet on youtube, and I have 5 films there for your enjoyment.
All the best, Bob.
 

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Hi Bob, watched your film on the Mystic with interest - it was my first ship, sailed as Engineer Cadet in about Sept 1964. I can remember two of the deck cadets were John Hughes and Mike Sangster, Roger (can't remember his surname) was the other engineer cadet, Mel Griffiths was a J. Eng, I think the C/E was 'Wee" Wiily Achison, the 3rd Eng. was Joe Doyle, a superb practical engineer who made quite an impression and influence on a young engineer just starting out. Can't remember any more names, but I remember it was a very happy ship and we all got on well.

Similar trip to your, but left from London, didn't go to Sudan via Suez but straight to Aden, Trincomalee, Fremantle, Port Pirie, Adelaide, Melbourne, Sydney (for Christmas and New Year, spent Boxing Day on Manly Beach), Newcastle and Brisbane, and I think Sydney, Melbourne and Fremantle, missed out Ceylon, Aden and went into Genoa homeward bound.

The very brief clips of the engine controls brought back memories, my first stand-by on the 12-4 leaving London shortly after midnight and I was given the movement book to write up and answer the telegraph - I never imagined I'd ever see that again, so quite moving for me. Shame the ER clips were a bit dark, would have loved to see more detail.

Memories:
First port was Suez canal, was on 12-4, we arrived about 6am and I was woken by apparently the "Captains Bum Boat Man", or so he said, coming into the cabin at 10 past 8 and opening his suitcase of wares. Was getting no-where trying to get rid of him and was glad when Roger, the other eng.cadet, came off watch but it took us about quarter of an hour to get rid, spent some of the time unpacking our stuff he kept packing into his suitcase!

Trincomalee, we were to leave in the very early hours, until water was found coming out the engine. Where was it coming from was a bit tricky to find - eventually found to be a cracked turbo-blower casing and the water was running down the exhaust trunking into the engine. Only it was now Ramadan and we couldn't raise the shore. We eventually by-passed the turbo-blower and went more slowly onto Fremantle and got it sorted there.

I think it was at Port Pirie, the deck cadets went on a night kangaroo shoot. I didn't fancy it so didn't go. They came back at 8am, one of the 'roos shot was a mother with a joey, the shooters brought the joey back, when they got to the ship the joey jumped out and jumped into the dock, one of the cadets had to dive into the dock to save it, what a game!

At Brisbane myself and another cadet went to the Lone Pine Koala reserve, which was great. We just missed the last bus back and the ship was sailing that night -instant nightmare! Fortunately, a kindly Aussie spotted us missing the bus and before we could go into full panic mode told us to jump into his car, he chased after the bus, passed it and dropped us off at the next stop so we could then catch it back to the ship.

The Sky Pilot from The Flying Angel Mission (where we would have been without the Flying Angel in all the ports?) in Sydney (or was it Newcastle?) came an offered two of us to crew on a sailing boat at Lake Macquirie which was a lovely afternoon out, as was the next trip when in Melbourne the Sky Pilot there took us cadets on a car trip up country; he had to go to a wedding and thought it would be nice for us to see the countryside and keep him company at the same time.

Have gone on too long, the Mystic hold very fond memories for me, thank you for putting this all together, very much appreciated.

Chris
 

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MV Mystic final voyage

Hi, I was also on the last voyage of the Mystic and seem to remember a young officer enjoying a few nights ashore with the lads.

I was the 16 years old galley boy on my first trip after completing my training at N.S.T.S at Gravesend and as best as I can recall the voyage went something like this;

October to March/April 1974 - 1975
Flew out from Speke airport in Liverpool to join the ship in Gothenburg

Loaded with huge rolls of paper and sailed to Cadiz

Loaded with crates of aluminium pipes and sailed to Cuba

Unloaded at various ports around Cuba including Havana, Puerto Isabela and Casilda where we played a footie match against the crew of a Russian tanker.

Loaded with unrefined sugar at Cienfuegas (I can still smell it after 40 years)

Sailed through Panama, across the Pacific to Chiba, Japan.

Unloaded

As far as I can remember the ship was then sold to a company in Hong Kong to be converted into a floating resaurant so after sailing there we disembarked and flew home to Heathrow via Bangkok, Bombay, Tehran and Zurich

Quite an experience for a youngster on my first trip

Like most people I'm good with faces but not with names but some names I do recall are my cabin mate George Thomas, cook Kenneth McClelland, bosun Bob Welch and steward Hughie something (large Scotsman with curly hair who looked out for me ) and a Somali greaser Lamb Chop.

I would love to see the pic of the ship and any other names you can recall.
I was on that voyage I was second electrician. I might have a picture of you
 
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