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LATEST NEWS, PHOTOGRAPHS AND UPDATES

PLEASE NOTE

MANY MORE PHOTOGRAPHS INCLUDING CREW PHOTO's, TOWS, ETC.,  CAN BE VIEWED IN THE THAMES TUGS PHOTO GALLERIES.

GO TO PHOTO GALLERIES

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IMPORTANT NOTICE

 

Over the last couple of months at least two people have contacted me via the contact button asking for details of how to send photographs to this site. I have responded to both but my message is bouncing back undeliverable. PLEASE PLEASE when contacting me ensure that the email address you are sending me is totally correct otherwise I cannot respond. To those who may be fuming as they have not had a reply I would say many thanks for your interest but please try again giving me your correct contact details.

 
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LATEST NEWS AND PHOTO'S

TUG PERSIA
 
 
An interesting story has arisen concerning the loss of the Tug Persia and her crew at Thames Haven during WW2. This has been published on KENT ONLINE and the story may be viewed by clicking HERE.

In connection with the above, some background
 
THE LUNULA INCIDENT


On 9th April 1941 the tugs Persia and Venturous were shifting  the Shell Tanker Lunula at No4 Jetty Thames Haven. The tanker had no steam so her degaussing coil was inoperative
and during the move she triggered a parachute mine previously laid by German aircraft. The resulting explosion covered the surrounding area in burning oil and over 60 people were killed, including the whole of the tugs crew. The boy/cook Kenny 'Ginger'  Lynds was on his first trip afloat and was aged just 15. The only body previously known to have been recovered was that of the skipper, Harry Aldrich, who is buried in Gravesend cemetery. The rest of the crew are commemorated on the Merchant Navy Memorial at Tower Hill London. The Persia was
taken in tow by the Esso tug Royal Daylight and anchored on Blythe Sands where the tug Hibernia extinguished the fire. Towed to Clifton Slipways at Gravesend for damage assessment the Persia was later rebuilt at Ramsgate and renamed Muria in 1946.

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23-12-2016 New Message in MESS ROOM 2016
 
19-11-2016 New message in MESS ROOM 2016
 
24-9-2016 New message in Mess Room 2016
 
CAN YOU HELP
 
I have recently had correspondence from a relative of a crew member who was lost on SUN IX. SUN IX was mined and sunk in the thames estuary on 21st December 1940. Some sources state 3 crew lost, other sources state all crew lost. If you can help by supplying any names of crew members lost on the vessel, which being under control of Naval Control Service at the time of loss could be MN or RN, RNR or RNVR, please contact this site via the contact button.
 
Facts known to me at the moment are;_
 
Gordon Bullen [fireman] and Thomas Hoiles [2/engineer] names are on the MN  memorial so their bodies were obviously not recovered.
Sidney Swaisland [seaman] body was recovered and buried in Southend Cemetery so his name does not appear on the MN memorial.
So we have two engine room staff and one deckhand [presumably] accounted for. I would presume on the crew were also Skipper , Mate,
Engineer and another deckhand and/or boy cook [possibly as young as 14]. To date I have not found any trace of these so there are two possibilities.
1] They survived and were rescued. It would be great to know their names.
2] They were killed and recovered and buried ashore but I havent been able to find the records.

HOWEVER
Today I have found another person who is recorded at the National Archives at Kew as being lost on Sun IX.
 
Temporary acting Lieutenant Thomas Michael Rumbold RNVR who is buried in Putney Vale cemetery, London.
 
This indicates that his body was recovered and buried ashore obviously. He may or may not have been the skipper or could have been a naval liason officer as
the tug was under the control of the Admiralty [Naval Control Service] at time of loss. There may have been other RN personel on board at the time who were
lost and not recovered but not being MN their names would not appear at TowerHill but may appear on local war memorials etc. Please help if you can.

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C247
Photos K Haydon coll
 
7--2016 Thorunn Green in Iceland is asking if anyone out there can name any of these guys or even hazard a guess as to which vessel the pic was taken on. She thinks there may be a possibility that the guy second left in the white shirt may be her father, Harry Green. Any thoughts, however vague you may think, would be appreciated.
 
18-02-2017 - re c247 The man second left is my uncle Fred. No notation on photo, but from his age and the fact that all personnel look roughly same age it was probably taken at end of war or late 40's. Kevin Haydon.
 
 
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Four superb vintage photos kindly sent in by Richard Milton.
 
 
Thomas Harding, Piermaster of West India Dock Pier about 1897. Photo courtesy Richard Milton.
 
 
Thomas Guy Harding [left] aboard the Gaselee tug Adder, tied up at West India Dock Pier about 1920. Photo courtesy Richard Milton.
 
Thomas Guy Harding [right] fireman of the Gaselee tug Viper about 1920. On the left in straw hat is the skipper Bill Squires. Photo courtesy Richard Milton.
 
 
Thomas Guy Harding [right standing] fireman, on board Gaselee tug Viper taking part in a river pageant about 1920. Behind him is his wife Lily, Son Richard and daughter Lilian.
The group standing to the left are possibly Gaselee directors. Photo courtesy Richard Milton.
 
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Wm RYAN. Photo Chris Morris.
 
This picture is the SUN XII towing the Black Prince out of the west india dock in the sixties.Thanks Dennis Clarke.
 
 

SUN??? with Joe Josh, Bob Milledge and Peter Sutherland on deck. Photo courtesy Bob Milledge.

1-8-2016 Hi Pete, that is either the XIX or XX as she has no hydraulic steering box cover aft. - George Boyd.

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Three photos of SUN VIII kindly supplied by Bill Shepherd

 
The Sun VIII outside the West India Dock.  The fellow on the fore deck is John Grainger - please say hello to John Grainger, Keith Toms and Bill Simpson, who I remember, when you next see them.

ref SUN V111
13-7-2016 Bill nice to hear from you the V111 was a very smart boat was Jim Skinsley the mate at the time Best Wishes Keith Toms
 
14-7-2016 ;re SUN VIII. Bill thanks for posting.
Keith, looks like Jim Skinsley and David Cox (senior deckhand) aft. Skipper was Jack Webb. Cheers, John Grainger.  
 
 
 
The Sun VIII with the M.V.Mercury on her maiden voyage at Enderbys Wharf Greenwich Reach.

 
 
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Trevor Grant doing what Sun Tug men do best! Painting the funnel of Cervia at Ramsgate. Photo Mike Houckham.
 
W T Beaumont's RODNEY II at Tower Pier in the early morning mist of what could be a fine day. Photo courtesy Paul Lamplough.
 
Photo courtesy Dennis Clarke. Can anyone add the missing surnames please???
 
10-4-2016 - ref crew xx111 Jock Keith 2nd Eng could you pass my regards onto Dennis worked together in the PLA dock tugs kind regards - Keith Toms


 
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VENTUROUS Photo B Hunt colln
 
 
THAMESMAN Photo B Hunt colln
 
 
SHAMROCK Photo B Hunt colln
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INFORMATION WANTED


INFORMATION WANTED ON ALL PICTURES BELOW PLEASE. WHEN, WHERE, WHAT, WHO ALL INFO IS GRATEFULLY ACCEPTED HOWEVER SMALL YOU MAY THINK IT IS!!!
 












 
 
More 1950'ish crew photo's from Kevin Haydon. C246 and C247 possibly taken on Muria or Racia. Any Identities appreciated.

C244

 This is believed to be Captain George Lowe of the Simla. Photo K Haydon colln.

[I know of at least one person out there who should be able to confirm or deny this!]
3-10-2013 hi pete, sadly but most definitely, its not my grandfather george lowe, but a great picture nonetheless , so the question now is, who is it. maybe its georges brother arthur !, but i have never seen a photo of arthur, who died on the bridge of the muria. -  mike houckham
 
Come on old hands ----I need your help again!!!!!
 
 
C245
 
8-10-2013 C245 2nd left = Fred Morgan i think. - Nolly Harvey
13-10-2013 - Pete, hi looks like the skipper in picture C245 and C244 are the same person??
Cheers, John Grainger.
 
 
 
C247
Photos K Haydon coll

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