Mersey Ships

Introduction

This page includes the postcards showing ships of the Mersey (other than liners) in Geoff Topp's collection. Other than re-organisation, and the addition of notes, the content is the same as when published on the Merchantnavyofficers.com website.

Beaverglen

Beaverglen
Beaverglen - the date and location are unknown.

Beaverglen was a 9,824 GRT steam turbine cargo ship with electric drive and refrigeration completed for Canadian Pacific Railway Co. in 1945 by Lithgows at their Port Glasgow yard. She was 151.6 metres long with beam 19.6 metres. Her single screws could propel her at 16 knots. She operated from the UK and Continental ports to Montreal and St. Johns. She was sold to Hibiscus Ltd. in 1963 and renamed Bermuda Hibiscus and to Cia Naviera Pearl SA in 1965 and renamed Ping An. She was wrecked 5 nautical miles North of the Hook of Holland on 24 November 1965 and subsequently broken up.

Bendigo

Bendigo
Bendigo - the date and location are unknown.

Bendigo was a 13,039 GRT quadruple-expansion steam-engined passenger/cargo ship with refrigeration completed for Peninsular & Oriental Steam Navigation Co. in 1922 by Harland & Wolff at their Greenock yard. She was 158.4 metres long with beam 19.6 metres. Her twin screws could propel her at 13.5 knots. She could accommodate 1,250 passengers - 500 on permanent 3rd class berths and a further 750 demountable berths. She was used extensively to take emigrants from the UK to Australia. She was taken to be broken up at Barrow in 1936.

HMS Birkenhead

HMS Birkenhead HMS Birkenhead
HMS Birkenhead leaving Birkenhead Docks. The date is unknown.

HMS Birkenhead was a 5,235 Tons displacement steam turbine powered cruiser completed for the Royal Navy in 1915 by Cammell, Laird & Co. at their Birkenhead yard. She was 135.9 metres long with beam 15.2 metres. Her four screws could propel her at 25.5 knots. She had been ordred by the Greek Navy in 1914 and was laid down as Antinavarchos Kountouriotis. At the outbreak of war, she was purchased by the British government, fitted with 5.5 inch guns and entered service with the Royal Navy. Her war service included taking part in the Battle of Jutland. She was broken up at Newport in 1921.

Bolivian

Bolivian
Bolivian off Birkenhead and is believed to date from about 1928.

Bolivian was a 5,116 GRT triple-expansion steam-engined cargo ship completed for Frederick Leyland & Co. Ltd. in 1920 by Irvine's Shipbuilding and Drydock Co. Ltd. at their Middleton yard. She was 121.9 metres long with beam 15.9 metres. Her single screw could propel her at 12 knots. She was sold to N.G.Livanos in 1933 and renamed Alfios, and sold again to Theofano Maritime Co. Ltd. in 1935. She was wrecked at East Spit, Sable Island on 14 April 1946 whilst sailing in ballast from Glasgow to Halifax.

Booker Venture

Booker Venture
Booker Venture - the date is unknown.

Booker Venture was a 8,227 diesel engined bulk carrier completed for Booker Ship Finance Ltd. in 1961 by Austin & Pickergill at their Southwick yard. She was 143.0 metres long with beam 17.5 metres. Her single screw could propel her at 12.5 knots. She was modified in 1966 making her 161.5 metres long and 13,717 GRT. In 1975 she was transferred to Booker Merchantmen Ltd., in 1978 she was sold to Transvenezuelan Sg Co SA and renamed Caribbean Memories, then 1980 to Thanic Sg Co and renamed Thanic, and finally in 1986 to Pyramis Sg Ltd and renamed Trader. She was taken to Alang for breaking up in 1986.

City of Adelaide

City of Adelaide
City of Adelaide off Pier Head. The date is unknown.

City of Adelaide was a 6,589 steam turbine engined cargo ship completed for Ellerman Lines Ltd. in 1920 by William Gray & Co. at their Sunderland yard. She was 132.0 metres long with beam 17.5 metres. Her single screw could propel her at 12 knots. She was sunk on 30 March 1944 by gunfire from Japanese submarine I-8 whilst en route from Karachi to Freemantle in ballast. Although there appear to have been no casualties directly arising from the sinking, a storeman is reported as dying a few months later. Later in the war this particular submarine became notorious for atrocities committed on seamen whose ships had been sunk. Commander Ariizumi, who had encouraged and participated in the murders, committed suicide after the Japanese surrender. Few of the crew had survived the war, but three were located and prosecuted. One was granted immunity in return for testifying against his former comrades. The others were convicted and served prison terms, which were commuted by the Japanese government in 1955.

City of Barcelona

City of Barcelona
City of Barcelona off Pier Head. The date is unknown.

City of Barcelona was a 5,787 steam turbine engined cargo ship with electric drive completed for Ellerman Lines Ltd. in 1930 by Barclay Curle & Co. at their Whiteinch yard. She was 130.5 metres long with beam 17.7 metres. Her single screw could propel her at 12 knots. She was broken up at Antwerp in 1958.

Clan MacLean

Clan MacLean
Clan MacLean coaling at Egerton Dock and is believed to date from about 1916.

Note: Clan MacLean was a 4,676 triple-expansion steam engined cargo ship completed for Sir Charles W.Cayzer in 1905 by W. Doxford & Sons at their Pallion yard. She was 117.4 metres long with beam 15.3 metres. Her single screw could propel her at 12 knots. From 1912 she was owned by The Clan Line Steamers Ltd. She was wrecked off Mafamede Island, Mozambique on 23 November 1919 whilst en route from Delagoa Bay to Kalindini with a coal and a general cargo.

Comedian

Comedian
Comedian coaling at Egerton Dock and is believed to date from about 1916.

Comedian was a 5,122 triple-expansion steam engined cargo ship completed for Charente Steamship Co. Ltd. in 1929 by Charles Connell & Co. at their Meadowside yard. She was 122 metres long with beam 16 metres. Her single screw could propel her at 12.5 knots. From 1950 she was owned by India Steamship Co. Ltd. and renamed Indian Importer and from 1956 by Birch Steamship Co. Ltd. and renamed South Birch. She was broken up at Hong Kong in 1959.

Davisian

Davisian
Davisian off New Brighton. The date is unknown.

Davisian was a 6,433 quadruple-expansion steam engined passenger/cargo ship with refrigeration completed for Frederick Leyland & Co. Ltd. in 1923 by D. & W. Henderson & Co. at their Scotstoun yard. She was 120.5 metres long with beam 16 metres. Her single screw could propel her at 12 knots. From 1934 she was owned by Charante Steamship Co. Ltd. She was captured and scuttled by German raider Widder on 10 July 1940 whilst en route from London to Paramaribo with a general cargo and patent fuel.

Defender

Defender
Defender in the middle of the River Mersey. The date is unknown.

Defender was a 8,078 quadruple-expansion steam engined cargo ship completed for Charante Steamship Co. Ltd. in 1915 by Charles Connell & Co. at their Scotstoun yard. She was 147 metres long with beam 17.8 metres. Her single screw could propel her at 13 knots. She was broken up at Barrow in 1952.

Dido

Dido
Dido passing the Rock Lighthouse inbound to Liverpool. The date is unknown.

Dido was a 3,554 triple-expansion steam engined cargo ship completed for Ellerman's Wilson Line Ltd. in 1920 by Dunlop, Bremner & Co. at their Inch yard. She was 95.7 metres long with beam 13.8 metres. Her single screw could propel her at 10.5 knots. Her history during WW2 was nothing short of astonishing. She was seized by the Germans in Brest on 10 June 1940 after being abandoned and renamed Dorpat , Mined and sunk in Aarhus Roads on 11 April 1943 and repaired, sunk again by sabotage at Aalborg on 11 February 1944 and yet again by air attack in Langeland Belt on 3 May 1945. Found at Kiel at the end of war she was once again repaired, and from 1949 owned by Rudolf W.Rostedt of Finland and renamed Leila, and from 1952 by W.Rostedt of Finland. She was finally broken up at Mathildedal in 1963 and we can conjecture that the breakers had a difficult job of it!

Dilwara

Dilwara
Dilwara. The date and location is unknown.
Empress of France
Dilwara passing the Rock Lighthouse inbound to Liverpool. The date is unknown.

Dilwara was a 11,080 diesel steam engined passenger/cargo ship with refrigeration completed for British India Steam Navigation Co. Ltd. in 1936 by Barclay, Curle & Co. at their Whiteinch yard. She was 151.3 metres long with beam 19.3 metres. Her twin screws could propel her at 14 knots. She was designed to become available as a troopship and was capable of handling 1,150 troops in her somewhat spartan accommodation - though she did have a small number of first and second class cabins. Prior to WW2 she was used by British India for educational voyages to the Mediterranean, Scandinavia, Belgium, The Netherlands, and British ports and later for transportation of troops to India, Burma, Palestine and Egypt; during WW2 she was employed largely in the Far East. After the war she was refurbished and modernised with better accommodation. She was sold to China Navigation Co. of London in 1960 and renamed Kuala Lumpur and used for pilgrimages sailing from Singapore, Port Swettenham, Penang, to Jeddah and return during for around half of the year, with the rest dedicated to regular cruise duties. In 1972 she was broken up at Kaohsiung.

Dukesgarth

Dukesgarth
Dukesgarth in the process of clearing the four bridges of East Float. The date is unknown.

Dukesgarth was a 10,760 diesel engined bulk carrier completed for St.Denis Shipping Co. Ltd. in 1961 by Blyth Drydock & Shipbuilding Co. at their Cowpen Quay yard. She was 155.7 metres long with beam 21.4 metres. Her single screw could propel her at 13 knots. She was sold to Pothitos Sg Co SA in 1976 and renamed Michalis, to Taxiarchis Sg Enterprises Maritime Co in 1980 and renamed Taxiarchis, and to Eva Shipping C. Ltd. in 1983. She was broken up at Alang in 1984.

Lochmonar

Lochmonar
Lochmonar wrecked Crosby Channel November 1929.

Note: This ship was incorrectly named as Loch Monarch on the merchantnavyofficers.com website but she was identified by George Robinson to whom I am extremely grateful.

Lochmonar was a 9,463 GRT diesel engined cargo ship with refrigeration completed for R.M.S.P.Meat Transports Ltd. in 1924 by Harland & Wolff at their Belfast yard. She was 148 metres long with beam 19.0 metres. She ran aground on 30 November 1927 at Taylor's Bank, Liverpool after her steering gear failed and broke into two. The stern section of the ship was recovered and repaired - there is a Pathe News film clip of the stern section being towed away HERE. In 1932 she was transferred to Royal Mail Lines Ltd. She was broken up at Blyth in 1949.

Lwow

Lwow
Lwow leaving Birkenhead. The date is unknown.

Lwow was originally a 1,293 GRT three-masted square-rigged frigate that, according to Wikipedia, was owned by Thomas & Brocklenbank, though I think this must be Thomas Brocklebank, in 1868 by R.G. Glover & Co. at their Birkenhead yard as Chinsura. She was 85.1 metres long with beam 11.4 metres and capable (after the addition of engines) of 12.5 knots and operated as a passenger/cargo ship on routes from the UK to India and Australia. She was sold to Fratelli Olvarii in 1893 and her name was changed to Lucco. After major damage in a storm near the Cape of Good Hope in 1898 she limped into Durban where she was repaired and sold to P. Landberg & Zoon who changed her name to Nest. In 1915 she was laid up near Rotterdam and stayed there until the mid 1920s when she was purchased for use by the Polish Navy and in 1921 commenced use as a training ship and renamed Lwów. Auxilliary engines were added at this time. She continued in this capacity until 1930 when she was retired. There is some doubt about where and when she was scrapped - possibly at Gdynia in 1938 and possibly at the beginning of WW2 by the Germans.

Massilia

Massilia
Massilia inward bound in the River Mersey. The date is unknown.

Massilia was a 11,985 GRT quadruple-expansion steam engined passenger/cargo ship with refrigeration completed for Anchor Line (Henderson Bros) Ltd. in 1902 by Alexander Stephen & Sons at their Linthouse yard. She was 122.1 metres long with beam 15 metres and her single screw was capable of 11.5 knots. She was mainly employed on the India service and was broken up at Bo'ness in 1930.

Pizarro

Pizarro
Pizarro and tug Nelson in Sandon Half-Tide Dock. The date is unknown.

Pizarro was a 8,564 GRT steam turbine engined cargo ship completed for Pacific Steam Navigation Co. in 1955 by Greenock Dockyard Co. at their Cartsdyke East yard. She was 156.2 metres long with beam 20.2 metres and her single screw was capable of 16.5 knots. She was transferred to Royal Mail Lines Ltd. in 1970 and sold to Navieros Progressivos SA in 1972 with her name being changed to Kavo Maleas. She was broken up at Kaohsiung in 1974.

Pomella

Pomella
Pomella anchored in the River Mersey. The date is unknown.

Pomella was a 6,765 GRT diesel-engined tanker completed for Anglo-Saxon Petroleum by Cammell, Laird & Co. at their Birkenhead yard in 1937. She was torpedoed on 9 July 1942 by German E-boat S-57 whilst in a convoy at position 50° 19' N, 03° 00' W. She was en route from Curacao to Southampton with a cargo of crude oil at the time. Six people lost their lives and the vessel is commemorated on the Tower Hill Memorial. Details and a photo of the memorial entry can be found on the Benjidog Tower Hill website HERE.

Recorder

Recorder
Recorder anchored in the River Mersey. The date is unknown.

Recorder was a 5,981 GRT triple-expansion steam engined cargo ship completed for Charente Steamship Co. Ltd. in 1930 by Cammell, Laird & Co. at their Birkenhead yard. She was 128.1 metres long with beam 16.6 metres and her single screw was capable of 13 knots. In 1950 she was sold to Audax Steamship Co. Ltd. and renamed Audax, in 1951 to Pacific Union Maritime Corp and renamed Ocean Star, in 1952 to Hachiuma Kisen KK and renamed Ocean Maru and in 1960 to Hokuyo Suisan KK and renamed Seiyo Maru. In 1961 she was convered to become a crab cannery and given a diesel engine and continued in service until 1971 when she was broken up at Kaohsiung.

Teucer

Teucer
Teucer and the tug Applegarth at Birkenhead. The date is unknown.

Teucer was a 8,924 GRT steam turbine engined cargo ship completed for NV Nederlandsche Stoomvaart Mij "Oceaan" of Amsterdam - the Dutch Blue Funnel Line - in 1950 by J. L. Thompson & Sons at their North Sands yard, though she was launched as Silverlaurel and destined for Silver Line. She was 144.4 metres long with beam 18.8 metres. Her single screw could propel her at 17 knots. In 1960 she was sold to China Mutual Steam Navigation Co. Ltd. and renamed Telamon, and in 1971 to Apsyrtos Shipping Co. Ltd. and renamed Aegis Epic. She was broken up at Shanghai in 1972.

Treloske

Treloske
Treloske with two tugs approaching Birkenhead. The date is unknown.

Treloske was a 5,386 GRT diesel engined cargo ship completed for Hain Steamship Co. Ltd. in 1950 by W. Doxford & Sons at their Pallion yard. She was 135 metres long with beam 17.2 metres. Her single screw could propel her at 12.5 knots. In 1963 she was sold to Chiao Mao Enterprises Ltd. of Hong Kong and renamed Yungfutary. She ran aground on rocks North-East of Hong Kong on 26 July 1968 whilst en route from Shanghai to Singapore with a general cargo and was declared a total constructive loss.

Unidentified

If anyone is able to make a definite identification of any of the ships below, please contact the website owner with details via the email address at the foot of this page.

Unidentified
Unidentified aircraft carrier off Pier Head. The date is unknown.
Unidentified
Unidentified Blue Funnel Sarpedon Class ship - it is the front of an invitation to view the ship. The date is unknown.
Unidentified
The reverse of an invitation to view the ship at Gladstone Dock. The date is unknown.
Unidentified
Unidentified shooner and is taken from Seacombe Promenade. The date is unknown.
Unidentified
Unidentified ships off New Brighton taken from the Tower and is believed to date from the 1920s.
Unidentified
Unidentified Booth Line and Empress ships at Princes landing stage and is believed to date from about 1952.
Unidentified
Unidentified Lamport & Holt cruise liner at Princes landing stage and is believed to date from about 1937.
Unidentified
Unidentified liner at Princes landing stage and is believed to date from about 1908.