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Gone But Not Forgotten

In December 1976, while serving in P&O’s SS Canberra, I took a photograph of the ship anchored next to us off the port of Dakar in West Africa. She was a forlorn and sorry sight, which is not so apparent in the photo as was seeing her in the flesh, or rather the steel. I could not make out her name or port of registry, and the lowered derricks suggested she was under no immediate orders to proceed in to unload.

Over the years I have wondered who and what she was. I was able to answer these questions with the help of Roy Fenton’s ‘Tramp Ships’, his marvellous tribute to those evocative ships of the past. On page 91, I came across the Tureby, a Burmeister & Wain single-decker built in 1936. A few hours on the internet and I was able to establish that the ship I had photographed was a sistership, built at the same yard in 1941. In 1975 she was sailing as Marlin II, owned by Euro-Atlantic de Nav of Panama.

By the time she went to scrap in 1980 she had served for almost 40 years and …

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