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BIBBY LINE

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LEICESTERSHIRE (1) was built in 1909 by Harland & Wolff at Belfast with a tonnage of 8059grt, a length of 467ft 2in, a beam of 54ft 2in and a service speed of 15 knots. Launched on 3rd June 1909 and delivered on 11th September she made her maiden voyage from Birkenhead to Rangoon. In August 1914 she was requisitioned for trooping for the Indian Expeditionary Force and carried Indian and Burmese troops to the Persian Gulf before reverting to Bibby services in the following November. She was taken over under the Liner Requisition Scheme in March 1917 and served on the North Atlantic although two voyages were made for Bibby's during that time. In 1918 she carried troops to North Russia to assist the White Russians before repatriating Australian soldiers. She was refurbished by her builders in 1919 during which time she was converted to oil burning. As with all conversions to oil the coal bunker forward of the funnel was converted into cargo space and derrick posts fitted to serve the hatch. In 1930 she was sold to the British National Exhibition Ship Co., renamed British Exhibitor, and refurbished for her new role by Cammell Laird & Co. of Birkenhead at a cost of £100,000. When the slump hit her owners went into voluntary liquidation in February 1932 and she was laid up at Southampton for a year. On 28th September 1933 she was purchased by the Cairo based Egyptian Company for Transport & Navigation and, as the Zam Zam, was deployed on their Egypt to Jeddah service. In May 1934 she was transferred to Societe Misr de Navigation of Alexandria without a change of name. Laid up at Suez in October 1939 she resumed service on the Alexandria - Cape Town - New York service in February 1941. On 21st March 1941 she left New York bound for Recife where she embarked 202 passengers and sailed on 9th April. At 0545 on 17th April, although a neutral, she was hit by 55 shells fired by the German raider Atlantis in ten minutes during which around 24 lives were lost. Seven hours later she was sunk with three bombs along the waterline. The survivors were taken aboard the Dresden which proceeded to St. Jean de Luz. It later transpired that the commander of the Atlantis, Bernhard Rogge, recognised her as a Bibby ship and decided that she was disguised as a troopship. (Photo: Bibby Line Group)

GLOUCESTERSHIRE (1) was built in 1910 by Harland & Wolff at Belfast with a tonnage of 8124grt, a length of 467ft 2in, a beam of 54ft 2in and a service speed of 15 knots. Sister of the Leicestershire she was launched on 7th July 1910 and completed on 22nd October. On 11th July 1913 she represented Bibby's at the Mersey Pageant. In August 1914 she was requisitioned for trooping duties and in December 1915 was converted into the Armed Merchant Cruiser HMS Gloucestershire and served with the 10th Cruiser Squadron. She was deployed on 'E' Patrol between Shetland and Iceland with Royal Mail Line's Ebro. In February 1916 she came under the control of the Minister of Blockade, Lord Robert Cecil. Decommissioned in 1917 she returned to trooping and on 2nd February 1936 arrived at Pembroke Dock where she was broken up by Thos. W. Ward. (Photo: Bibby Line Group)

OXFORDSHIRE (1) was built in 1912 by Harland & Wolff at Belfast with a tonnage of 8648grt, a length of 474ft 7in, a beam of 55ft 4in and a service speed of 15.5 knots. Launched on 15th June 1912 and completed on 17th September she was the company's last ship built with a counter stern. On 2nd August 1914 she was the first ship to be requisitioned for war service two days prior to the outbreak. En-route from Liverpool to London she was off the Isle of Wight and was ordered into Tilbury where she was converted into Naval Hospital Ship No.1 with 562 beds. Commissioned on 11th August she was sent to Scapa Flow as a base ship on 25th September but proved to be too large for the needs at the time and subsequently moved to the English Channel to undertake army hospital work. In April 1915 she was deployed as the base hospital ship at Mudros and was present during the ANZAC withdrawal at the Dardenelles, bringing off the wounded in her own boats. The victorious Turks respected the red cross and did not fire on them. She served in the Persian Gulf and German East Africa during December 1916 and in 1918 as a shuttle hospital ship in the English Channel. Decommissioned on 24th March 1919 she had made 235 voyages, steamed 172,000 miles without a single breakdown and carried 50,000 wounded, the highest of any hospital ship in the war. She was refurbished and converted to oil burning by her builder in 1920 and resumed commercial services. On 3rd September 1939 she was requisitioned, once again, for war time service and converted into Hospital Ship No. 6 with 500 beds at the Royal Albert Dock in London. Commissioned on 24th September she left London on 11th November bound for Freetown with 98 medical staff and 177 crew where she served as the base hospital ship. In September 1942 she was redeployed in the Mediterranean. After a refit on the Clyde in 1944 she was sent to the Adriatic where the Army's Anglia had been damaged by mines and on 29th October was herself damaged by a bomb near miss during a voyage between Ancona and Bari. In November of that year she was sent to the Far East where she served the Admiralty Islands/Philippines and Australia. At one point she was loaned to the U.S. 7th Fleet for use during the taking of Okinawa. After the defeat of Japan in 1945 she was used to repatriate the wounded from Hong Kong and in May 1946 became an Army hospital ship to bring the sick home from the near and Far East. She also repatriated Indian troops from Basra to Bombay as well as making four North Atlantic crossings with refugees. In 1948 she arrived home with troops from Palestine and , on 19th July, was decommissioned at Southampton after carrying 22,321 casualties during the war, again the highest of any hospital ship. On 8th September of that year she made one one more voyage on charter to Jeddah with pilgrims before she was reconditioned by Harland & Wolff at Liverpool. In April 1949 she made the first sailing for the International Refugee Organisation to Australia with emigrants and in 1950 reverted to trooping duties between Trieste and Port Said. She finished trooping in February 1951 and on 13th April sailed from Liverpool as the Safina-el-Arab having been sold to the Pan-Islamic Steamship Co. of Karachi, their first passenger ship. Deployed on the Karachi - Jeddah Pilgrim service between June and October she spent the remainder of the year operating between Karachi and Chittagong. After 46 years of impeccable service she was broken up at Karachi in 1858. (Photo: Bibby Line Group)

LANCASHIRE (2) was built in 1914 by Harland & Wolff at Belfast with a tonnage of 9542grt, a length of 482ft 4in, a beam of 57ft 4in and a service speed of 15 knots. Laid down in August 1914 her construction was delayed by the war and she wasn't launched until 17th January 1917. She was completed in the following July, albeit in austere style, and sailed from Birkenhead to Rangoon in the August under the Liner Requisition Scheme. In November 1918 she commenced repatriating French prisoners of war and later Belgian refugees. Released from the Liner Requisition Scheme on 13th December 1918, in January 1919 she was deployed on trooping duties firstly from Antwerp and Plymouth to Australia and then from the United Kingdom to the U. S. A. In January of that year she grounded at Steenbank in Belgium and was refloated the next day. She was released back to Bibby's in 1920 and whilst waiting to return to her builders in Belfast was placed on the Birkenhead to Rangoon service. Finished to Bibby standards and converted to oil burning during 1921 she then returned to troopship duties in the company livery. In 1923 she had a fire in her cargo when at Tilbury and then in 1924 she had a fire in her cargo of rice meal when she was approaching Marseilles. The fire was extinguished after 100 tons of rice was dumped overboard. On 28th April 1930 work was started at Camnmell Laird & Co. at Birkenhead to convert her into a permanent troopship to replace Ellerman's City of Marseilles. Emerging with a white troopship livery she sailed from Southampton on 23rd December 1931 carrying the 1st Battalion of the Middlesex Regiment. To delay her until after Christmas would have cost £400 per day but, to make amends, a full festive programme took place off the coast of Portugal. In November 1939 she was the commodore ship in a convoy which included the Devonshire and five British India ships sailing between Bombay and Marseilles with the first contingent of the Indian Expeditionary Force. On 'D' Day, 6th/7th June 1944, she acted as commodore ship for convoy ETP 1and sailed from the Thames to Juno Beach in Normandy in line ahead with the Cheshire, Worcestershire and Devonshire. In 1945 she was converted into a depot and store ship for the Pacific Fleet Train and in April of that year sailed from Liverpool with 500 technicians bound for Hong Kong where the engineers were used to restore public services and to get the dockyard operating. She then assisted with the repatriation of sick troops. In 1946 she was refurbished by Harland & Wolff at Govan into a peacetime troopship and trooped continuously to Cyprus, India and the Far East for the next ten years. In 1946 she was replaced by the Oxfordshire (2) and was broken up by Thos. W. ward at Barrow-in-Furness in the February. (From a painting by James S Mann)

YORKSHIRE (2) was built in 1920 by Harland & Wolff at Belfast with a tonnage of 10184grt, a length of 482ft 5in, a beam of 58ft 4in and a service speed of 15.5 knots. She was built as a wartime replacement in the quickest possible time and equipped with engines that were immediately available. Consequently, she was the odd ship in a fleet of reciprocating engines and during her trials experienced gearing problems. However, she was the company's first ship to exceed 10,000grt. On 17th September 1939 she became Bibby's first World War 2 casualty. She was proceeding in convoy from Gibraltar to Liverpool when, at 0836 and as commodore ship, she reported that they were resisting an attack from a submarine which then proceeded to submerge and shadow the convoy. At 1643 she was torpedoed by U-37 off the coast of France with the loss of 33 passengers and 25 crew members. The US steamship Independence Hall rescued 118 passengers and 160 crew and the submarine surfaced and, in English, thanked the American ship, which was still neutral, for rescuing the survivors. Ellerman Lines City of Mandalay was lost during the same attack. (Photo: Bibby Line Group)

DORSETSHIRE (1) was built in 1920 by Harland & Wolff at Belfast with a tonnage of 7450grt, a length of 450ft 4in, a beam of 57ft 4in and a service speed of 12 knots. One of a pair she was designed with higher than normal 'tween deck clearance so that she could be converted into a troopship if required. When launched on 22nd April 1920 she was the largest motorship at the time and was completed as a tin ore carrying cargo ship. However, before completion the ore which was mined at Mamtu and Mawchi in Burma began to be refined locally so she was actually deployed as a general cargo ship operating between the UK- and Burma for Bibby Line and between the UK and India on charter to T & J Brocklebank. In 1927 she was converted into a permanent troopship by Vickers at Barrow in Furness as a result of which her tonnage was increased to 9345grt. She had accommodation for 112 1st, 58 2nd, 108 families in 3rd and 1450 troops. In September 1939 she was converted into HM Hospital Ship No.23 with beds for 493 patients and accommodation for 59 medical staff. On 31st January 1941 during s voyage to Tobruk to evacuate troops she was, despite her markings, attacked outside Sollum in Libya. Although the enemy had been advised that she was a Geneva Convention ships she was attacked again on 1st February. On 12th July 1943 she was bombed and received superficial damage when 13 miles from Cape Passero while supporting the Allied invasion of Sicily which had commenced on the 9th July. She was decommissioned on 8th March 1948 and rebuilt by Harland & Wolff to accommodate tourists, returning to Bibby Line in November 1949. On 11th December 1949 she sailed from Liverpool bound for Australia with 550 passengers and back in Bibby Line livery after 21 years. When the citizens at Adelaide wished to send food parcels back to Britain they were refused because of the cost of becoming a 'cargo' ship made the transit of the Suez Canal too expensive. With her sister she was used to repatriate Dutch civilians from Indonesia. During 1952 she was used as a hostel ship for workmen building the Little Aden oil refinery and on 12th May 1953 sailed from Liverpool with troops bound for Korea. She was laid up in the following August and broken up in 1954. (Photo: Bibby Line Group)

SOMERSETSHIRE was built in 1921 by Harland & Wolff at Belfast with a tonnage of 7450grt, a length of 450ft 4in, a beam of 57ft 4in and a service speed of 12 knots. Sister of the Dorsetshire she was launched on 24th February 1921 and her maiden voyage in the following May was on charter to the Royal Mail Steam Packet Co. on their North Pacific service which terminated at Vancouver. In 1927 she was converted into a permanent troopship with accommodation for 1300 men and her first sailing was to China in the following October. At the end of her return voyage in the December she was delayed for eight days by gales in the Mediterranean and her full complement celebrated Christmas at sea regardless of the inclement weather. In January 1928 she began trooping to Karachi which continued until May when she was laid up off Dartmouth. While she was trooping to China in 1931 she suffered an outbreak of influenza which affected 300 person but fortunately there were no deaths. In September 1939 she was requisitioned and converted into HM Hospital Ship No.25 with 507 beds, 118 medical staff and 171 crew. She was present at the withdrawal from Narvik in April 1940 and on 6th December of the same year was bombarded from shore as her launches brought of the wounded at Tobruk. In February 1941 she joined the Dorsetshire in evacuating the wounded from besieged Tobruk before a period of operation from the Red Sea to South Africa, Australia and New Zealand repatriating wounded soldiers. On 7th April 1942, in the Mediterranean and carrying no patients, she was torpedoed on the starboard side forward by U-453 with the loss of 7 lives. As she settled by the head and with a list her thirteen usable lifeboats took off the Royal Army Corps personnel and 114 crew members. The 64 medical staff and 2 stewardesses were put aboard a Greek destroyer and the crew reboarded her and managed to get her to Alexandria on the port engine and assisted by tugs. During 1944-46 she sailed all over the world as a hospital ship finishing up in the Pacific. In February 1948 she was decommissioned and rebuilt by Harland & Wolff with accommodation for 550 passengers. On 12th November 1948 she commenced her first sailing from Liverpool to Australia in Bibby livery with 500 passengers on assisted passages. During a voyage in 1952 she broke down in the Mediterranean and limped home on one engine. In 1953 she briefly returned to trooping to East Africa during the Mau Mau troubles and in 1954 was broken up by Thos. W. Ward and Barrow-in-Furness. (Photo: Bibby Line Group)

SHROPSHIRE (2) was built in 1926 by Fairfield Shipbuilding & Engineering Co. at Glasgow with a tonnage of 10550grt, a length of 483ft 7in, a beam of 60ft 2in and a service speed of 15.5 knots. Bibby's first 'Burma' boat not built by Harland & Wolff she was launched on 10th June 1926 and delivered to the company on 7th October and was the lead ship of twelve from the Fairfield yard. The reason for the change was that Fairfield's installed the more compact Sulzer engine which left more cargo space. In October 1939 she was commissioned as an Armed Merchant Cruiser and renamed HMS Salopian as there was already a cruiser with the name Shropshire. On 13th May 1941 she was torpedoed by U-98 when 300 off Greenland, southeast of Cape Farewell. The first three torpedoes fired by U-98 missed but two of the next spread and three of a third spread hit the ship. In all it took eight torpedoes to sink her. (Photo: Bibby Line Group)

CHESHIRE (2) was built in 1927 by Fairfield Shipbuilding & Engineering Co. at Glasgow with a tonnage of 10550grt, a length of 483ft 7in, a beam of 60ft 2in and a service speed of 15.5 knots. Sister of the Shropshire she was launched on 20th April 1927 and replaced the Warwickshire (1) in the July. By 1934 her log recorded that she had steamed 447,361 miles without ever having to stop because of engine trouble. She was inbound when the Second World War broke out on 3rd September 1939 and was ordered to Calcutta where she was converted into Armed Merchant Cruiser HMS Cheshire. Armed with 6 x 6" and Anti-aircraft guns she was used on North Atlantic patrols. On 14th October 1940, when west of Ireland, she was torpedoed in her No.2 hold by U-137 and although she was taken in tow by two rescue tugs she had to be beached at Carrickfergus. While she was there a German bomb dropped close to her but caused no damage. The Liverpool Salvage Association's Ranger patched her up and she limped into Belfast before proceeding to Liverpool's Gladstone Dock where repairs took six months. On 14th March 1942, when off Cape Town, she stopped the German raider Doggerbank which, being the captured Speybank of Bank Line, identified herself as the Levenbank and was allowed to proceed. Later, on 24th July, she took Lambert's Temple Inn in tow and took her into Point Noire after she had shed her propeller. On 18th August she was torpedoed again in the North Atlantic by U-214 but managed to reach port and while she was being repaired was converted into a troopship. At 0930 on 7th June 1944 she arrived at Juno Beach, Normandy in line ahead with the Lancashire, Devonshire and Worcestershire with, between them, 10,000 troops. During 1945 she repatriated troops and on 25th September 1946 arrived at Gibraltar with the residents who had been evacuated to Northern Ireland in 1940. On 5th October 1948 she was returned to Bibby's while at Port Said and returned to Liverpool where she was refurbished to carry 650 passengers. She commenced her first sailing from Liverpool to Sydney on 9th August 1949. She returned to trooping on 5th February 1953 and carried military personnel during the Korean War. She ended her last voyage on 10 February 1957 and was laid up at Langton Dock in Liverpool. On 11th July 1957 she arrived at Newport, Monmouthshire where she was broken up by J. Cashmore. (Photo: Bibby Line Group)

STAFFORDSHIRE (1) was built in 1929 by Fairfield Shipbuilding & Engineering Co. at Glasgow with a tonnage of 10654grt, a length of 483ft 7in, a beam of 60ft 2in and a service speed of 15.5 knots. Sister of the Shropshire she was launched on 29th October 1929 and commenced her maiden voyage from Liverpool to Rangoon on 22nd February . When the Second World War broke out in 1939 she remained in commercial service from Birkenhead to Rangoon until April 1940 when she was requisitioned by the Ministry of War Transport for trooping between Southampton and Rangoon. On 28th May 1941 she was bombed three times by German Focke Wolf aircraft when she was 140 miles northwest of the Butt of Lewis in the Outer Hebrides. The ship had to be abandoned and most of the casualties, 14 passengers and 14 crew, were due to hypothermia after jumping into the near freezing sea. The undamaged lifeboats were so crowded that the survivors had to stand up holding on to each other for 10 hours. The passengers were transferred to the naval escorts and the crew eventually reboarded her and beached her on the coast of Scotland. She was towed to the Tyne where she was repaired and converted into a troopship for 1800 men. Her tonnage was marginally increased to 10701grt and she returned to service in January 1942. In August 1944 she took part in the South of France landings and in August 1944 was present at the invasion of Malaysia. Following that she was engaged in repatriating Russian and Italian prisoners of war. During 1946/7 she continued service as a troopship and was scheduled for decommissioning in 1948. However, due to the problems in Malaysia she carried the 3rd Battalion Grenadier Guards to Singapore before being returned to Bibby's in November 1948. She was immediately sent to her builder and modernised before returning to the Liverpool to Rangoon service where she remained for ten years. On 4th July 1959 she arrived at Liverpool for the last time and, in the October, she was sold for demolition. Renamed Stafford Maru she made her last voyage from Liverpool - Casablanca - New Orleans - Yokohama and Osaka where she was broken up by Mitsui Bussan Kaisha. (From a painting by James S Mann)

WORCESTERSHIRE (2) was built in 1931 by Fairfield Shipbuilding & Engineering Co. at Glasgow with a tonnage of 10453grt, a length of 483ft, a beam of 64ft 2in and a service speed of 15 knots. She was launched on 8th October 1930, completed on 5th February 1931 and commenced her maiden voyage from Liverpool to Rangoon on 6th March. When the Second World War was declared she was inbound from Burma and, in the November, was converted into the Armed Merchant Cruiser HMS Worcestershire, and deployed as a convoy escort in the North Atlantic. On 3rd April 1941 she was escorting a convoy which lost ten ships and she herself was torpedoed by U-74 but managed to reach Liverpool, taking 6 days to complete the 980 mile voyage. She return to service in the following November and was sent to the Far East for escort duties. In June 1943 she was converted into a troopship for 2000 men and in 1944 was at Southampton when she was selected for the Normandy 'Neptune Landings'. To reposition to London, where she embarked her troops, for safety sake she had to sail via the north of Scotland. On 6th June she sailed from the Thames with the Cheshire, Lancashire and Devonshire to France where she landed her troops on the Juno Beach in Normandy. In September 1945 she was present at the re-occupation of the Malaysian Peninsular by Allied troops and continued trooping throughout 1946. In all she carried 80,000 troops without any losses. She continued repatriating troops form the Far East until October 1947 when she was returned to Bibby's and her builder for modernisation. With her passenger accommodation reduced to 100 first class she returned to commercial service in January 1949 and continued until 1961 when she was sold to C. Itoh & Co. of Osaka. Renamed Kannon Maru for her final voyage she arrived at Osaka in the December where she was broken up. (Photo: Bibby Line Group)

DERBYSHIRE (2) was built in 1935 by Fairfield Shipbuilding & Engineering Co. at Glasgow with a tonnage of 11660grt, a length of 482ft 7in, a beam of 66ft 2in and a service speed of 15.5 knots. Bibby's last four masted ship she was launched on 14th June 1935 and commenced her maiden voyage from Birkenhead to Rangoon via Marseilles and Colombo on 8th November. When the Second World War broke out she was converted into the Armed Merchant Cruiser HMS Derbyshire during November 1939. With her main and mizzen masts removed and her after mast reduced to a stump she was armed with 6 x 6in, 2 x 3in anti-aircraft and machine guns and deployed on Western Approaches patrols. She also acted as a convoy escort and covered over 156,000 miles in under two years. In 1941 she was decommissioned and converted into a troopship flying the red ensign. During Operation Torch in November 1942 she carried U. S. troops from Liverpool to Arzew Bay in Algeria and troop reinforcements to Mers-el-Kebir and Algiers. Later in that year she was converted into an LSI (Landing Ship Infantry) for the invasion of Sicily and equipped with 20 assault craft in two tiers under the davits with one 'leader' on deck. In 1943 she was part of 'Force G' and landed, at Pechino in two waves, first her commando force followed by Canadian troops onto the same beaches. On 22nd January 1944 she carried troops to the Anzio beaches and, in the following August, took part in Operation Anvil, the invasion of Southern France where she landed U. S. troops at Cap Camarat before returning to Liverpool to prepare for service in the Far East. In January 1945 she sailed for Bombay and Ceylon where, on 3rd September and as headquarters ship to General Mansergh she took the first troops back into Rangoon from where she proceeded to Singapore. Technically, she was the first Bibby ship to visit Burma after the war. On 5th September she was the first troopship to berth at Singapore and the surrender of the Japanese Garrison was controlled from her. As many as possible freed Allied prisoners of war being taken aboard where they were tended and fed while awaiting the arrival of other ships. During 1946 she continued trooping and repatriated military personnel from the Far East. Throughout her wartime service she carried some 136,000 troops and steamed 330,000 miles. Returned to Bibby's in November 1947 she was refurbished for the Burma service where she remained until 1964 when a scheme to convert her into an exhibition ship failed to materialise. As a result she was broken up in the Far East. (From a painting by James S Mann)

DEVONSHIRE (1) was built in 1939 by Fairfield Shipbuilding & Engineering Co. at Glasgow with a tonnage of 11275grt, a length of 516ft 10in, a beam of 63ft 4in and a service speed of 16 knots. A near sister to British India's Dunera she was launched as a permanent troopship on 20th December 1938 with accommodation for 104 1st Class, 90 2nd Class passengers and 1150 troops. On 8th July 1939 she was laid up at Dartmouth to await the trooping season and on 17th August sailed from Southampton to India. From there she spent four and a half years trooping in the Far East, Australia, South Africa and the Mediterranean before returning to the United Kingdom. In 1943 she was converted into an LSI (Landing Ship Infantry) at Suez and acted as the Command Operations Ship during the invasion of Sicily and as an assault ship at the Salerno landings. When she returned to the UK in April 1944 she joined the Worcestershire, Cheshire and Lancashire at the 'D' Day landings on 6th/7th June and carried troops from the River Thames to the Juno Beach in Normandy. After the war in Europe ended she then carried troops to Malaysia and Korea. In February 1951, en route to Gibraltar and in a gale in the Bay of Biscay, her engines were put out of action when a spare piston rod broke loose. She broached to and rolled to 45% before power was restored. A previously sent 'Mayday' signal was cancelled and so much crockery was smashed that it was difficult to feed the troops onboard. She was refitted by her builder in April 1953 when hammocks were replaced by two tier metal bunks and, on completion, was chartered to the Sea Transport Division of the Ministry of Transport to replace the Empire Pride operating from Southampton instead of Liverpool. Her refit increased her tonnage to 12773grt and altered her capacity to 130 1st Class, 96 2nd Class, 99 3rd Class passengers and 824 troops. In January 1962 the trooping contract was bought out by the Ministry of Transport and she was sold to British India for £175,000 to join the Dunera. Refitted by Barclay, Curle & Co. at Glasgow she was converted into an educational ship with accommodation for 190 1st Class, 96 2nd Class and 830 students and renamed Devonia. After five years in that role she arrived at La Spezia on 14th December 1967 where she was broken up. (From a painting by James S Mann)

HEREFORDSHIRE (2) was built in 1944 by Barclay, Curle & Co. at Glasgow with a tonnage of 8158grt, a length of 471ft 7in, a beam of 64ft 2in and a service speed of 16 knots. Built as a cargo ship her specification included the provision for future conversion into a passenger ship should the trade warrant it.. When the Second World War ended she was the only Bibby ship on the Liverpool to Rangoon service until the Derbyshire joined her. In 1954 she was chartered to Port Line for ten years and renamed Port Hardy but reverted to Herefordshire in 1961. She was sold to Troodos Shipping & Trading Co. Ltd of London in 1969 and renamed Merryland. Two years later she was transferred to their subsidiary Cia Naviera Meritath of Limassol, Cyprus under the ownership of Cyprus Sea Cruises with the intention of converting her into a cruise ship. The project never materialised and on 2nd February 1973 she arrived at Kaohsuing where she was broken up. (Photo: Bibby Line Group)
WARWICKSHIRE (2) was built in 1948 by Fairfield Shipbuilding & Engineering Co. at Govan with a tonnage of 8903grt, a length of 480ft 6in, a beam of 60ft 3in and a service speed of 15.5 knots. Launched on 14th August 1947 she was the company's first single screw ship for 49 years and the first steamship for 27 years. She took 2 years to complete and commenced her maiden voyage on the Birkenhead - Burma service on 5th September 1948. Due to Burma being given Independence and the consequent emergence of local competition she maintained a declining service throughout her career with the company. In 1965 the passenger service was discontinued and, being unsuitable for other deployment, she was sold to Typaldos Bros' Aegean Steam Navigation Co., who converted her into an overnight car carrying ferry which operated between Piraeus and Crete. Renamed Hania, although listed by Typaldos as the Chanea, her mast and derrick posts were removed and the well decks were covered over. In 1966 the Typaldos Bros. went bankrupt and she was consequently laid up with the rest of the fleet at Perama. She eventually deteriorated, became a derelict and was abandoned and scrapped. (Photo: Bibby Line Group)

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