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Arnold Smith
5th January 2018, 09:57 AM
Hello! I'm new to these forums and this great site in particular. I joined the MV Orecrest in January 1964 at the Ford Motor Co dock in Dagenham as a junior engineer at the tender age of 21. Having served my time as a precision toolmaker I knew absolutely nothing about ships, but always knew that I wanted to be a part of life at sea. Well, I felt a million dollars and certainly a little (lot) nervous as I swaggered up the gangway in my battledress jacket and my newly acquired peaked cap (I kid you not) set at a jaunty angle. Needless to say I was soon brought down to earth with a bump by the second eng, whose name sadly escapes me.
My first trip was to Kirkenes and back to Workington, wow what a voyage; the stunning beauty of the fjords on the way up, the freezing cold of those northern parts and the terrible weather during the deepsea navigation on the way back home. The chief engineers name was John William Lloyd (John Willie) and he was one of life's gentlemen and taught me a lot. We picked up a lot of damage on that trip home; I recall the cement being smashed out of the fairleads and the chain locker flooding, also we lost some awnings and had a gangway damaged.
Things could only get better and they did with a nice trip south to Sagunto in Spain and many others to places like: La goulette in Tunisia; Poti in Russia; Melilla in Spanish Morocco...Seven Islands; and many to west Africa; Mauritania; Sierra Leon and Liberia. And of course most of all Narvik was almost a second home as was Port Talbot.
Ah! Port Talbot...did you act like an officer and drink in the Walnut Tree Hotel or go for a good time with the crew, and probably a fight at the Red House....Anyway they are different stories, for another time.
I can't recall the names of most on the ship. certainly the Old Man was a fiery little Scotsman and nobody really saw much of him, he always ate midships and had his own tiger. The carpenter was a lovely Maltese chap we all called Hamlet and I remember a 4th Eng named Charlie Neverett.
I look forward to anyones comments on this or if anyone remembers me Arnold Smith (usually called Tom)

cappy
5th January 2018, 10:03 AM
#did a few ore carriers but liked the tramps most ore carriers tended to be good feeders .....as others it seems we never forgot out ist ship ......cappy

Keith Tindell
5th January 2018, 10:17 AM
Hi Tom , You have come to the right site for memories, we all recall our first trip, mine was 1958, walking up the gangway as a deck boy, only one rank above the ships cat !!!. You can list your ships here, and will more than likely meet someone who sailed the same ships. Look forward to the stories, kt

Bill Cameron
5th January 2018, 10:28 AM
Hi Tom , You have come to the right site for memories, we all recall our first trip, mine was 1958, walking up the gangway as a deck boy, only one rank above the ships cat !!!. You can list your ships here, and will more than likely meet someone who sailed the same ships. Look forward to the stories, kt
Keith, as cabin boy on the MV Broughty, I was told by the Skipper that I was lower than the ships cat, I signed off next time we arrived back in Dundee, I had been on her for three months.

robpage
5th January 2018, 11:28 AM
Hello! I'm new to these forums and this great site in particular. I joined the MV Orecrest in January 1964 at the Ford Motor Co dock in Dagenham as a junior engineer at the tender age of 21. Having served my time as a precision toolmaker I knew absolutely nothing about ships, but always knew that I wanted to be a part of life at sea. Well, I felt a million dollars and certainly a little (lot) nervous as I swaggered up the gangway in my battledress jacket and my newly acquired peaked cap (I kid you not) set at a jaunty angle. Needless to say I was soon brought down to earth with a bump by the second eng, whose name sadly esy Maltese chap we all called Hamlet and I remember a 4th Eng named Charlie Neverett.
I look forward to anyones comments on this or if anyone remembers me Arnold Smith (usually called Tom)

I was working by in Smith's North Shields , sitting in the duty mess , when a uniformed fresh faced cadet on his first trip appeared at the door , the Second said , you must be the new bloke , I'm the second engineer , oh good says new bloke I'm the engineer OFFICER cadet , so can you get my bags , oh dear what a rude awakening he got

j.sabourn
5th January 2018, 11:57 AM
Arnold I was mate on the Ravensworth about the time you mention so may of even been in the same bars at the same time. I was on a few ore carriers over a length of time, Pennyworth, Ravensworth, and later the Beechwood and Cherrywood. Ships that pass in the night. Cheers JWS

j.sabourn
5th January 2018, 12:12 PM
#5... I hope you took him along the 50 or so strides from that bottom gate at smoko to the jungle Rob and introduced him to the natives. Cheers JS

robpage
5th January 2018, 12:34 PM
#5... I hope you took him along the 50 or so strides from that bottom gate at smoko to the jungle Rob and introduced him to the natives. Cheers JS

I was working by , so was over in South Shields in Digs at night , New Cadet , had a job list that would have kept him out of trouble for years , and had a drain fitted to lose the bull

thomas michael
5th January 2018, 01:52 PM
Hello! I'm new to these forums and this great site in particular.


I can't recall the names of most on the ship. certainly the Old Man was a fiery little Scotsman and nobody really saw much of him, he always ate midships and had his own tiger. The carpenter was a lovely Maltese chap we all called Hamlet and I remember a 4th Eng named Charlie Neverett.
I look forward to anyones comments on this or if anyone remembers me Arnold Smith (usually called Tom)

hi Arnold or tom
I was on the orecrest in sixty four, and was on for all of your described voyages, but I was the deck boy,
tom

Don Cook
5th January 2018, 05:41 PM
Hi Arnold

I too was a first tripper on the Orecrest joined her at Cardiff Docks late December 1962 as Jnr Eng,(complete with white overalls) first trip Narvic second Bone (still have my go ashore pass) we then took her to the River Fal to be laid-up late January, all Eng room crowd payed off except for C/E who stayed aboard. Were you put on the 12 to 4 with a third who had no time for first trippers? also did you have to pump up the daily F/O service tanks and change them over, strip down F/O purifiers for cleaning check the salometer.I always remember the greaser complaining how hot it was on purifier flat for him to work.
The name Lloyd ring a bell as C/E as you say a real gentleman (I'll have to check my watchkeeping paperwork).

When you joined her was the owner still Ivanovic?

Don

j.sabourn
6th January 2018, 12:16 AM
All you Port Talbot runners will remember Cindy then. A good friend to the seamen during the strike in 66. JWS.

Des Taff Jenkins
6th January 2018, 12:41 AM
Hi Tom .
Welcome to the site. You have struck pay-dirt on your first post Thomas he was there as large as life, you never know who you will come across on site.
Cheers Des

j.sabourn
6th January 2018, 01:01 AM
The ore carriers on Bisco charter were always good for those seeking short trips and being able to get home at short notice. They were on a 6 months running agreement which meant you could get off on 72 hours notice before arrival uk. The overtime was good because the shipowner wasn’t paying it, the charterers were. The purpose built ore carriers were mostly on 15 year charters and were a good money earner for their owners. Bisco however being a nationalised industry fell by the wayside when the time and motion and bean counters got their grubby hands on it. As far as most seafarers found though it worked in with their life style. Going into them from tramp shipping on 2 year Articles was like manna from heaven. The deck crowd used to get their standard 3 4 5 And even 6 hours a day overtime with not too much being said. In tramp shipping the owners were on your neck all the time to keep the overtime bill down. Some ships have seen the crews overtime deplorable to satisfy some persons ego and advancement up the promotion ladder. If got landed with such I was only there for trip, even though in all my seatime I never got paid overtime as such, only when an apprentice. When was about 9 pence an hour after a 56 hour week. Most of that never received as was hidden in the overtime as field days. The ore carriers brought out a different mindset to people like me on seagoing conditions at the time. JWS

happy daze john in oz
6th January 2018, 05:10 AM
Keith, as cabin boy on the MV Broughty, I was told by the Skipper that I was lower than the ships cat, I signed off next time we arrived back in Dundee, I had been on her for three months.

Bill you were lucky, on some ships the food was so bad the cat would have been eaten.

Arnold Smith
6th January 2018, 10:24 PM
Hi Michael
Thanks for replying, I have a bell of recollection ringing in my head although I don't remember you specifically but hey! it was a long time ago. Do you recall the 3rd mate Bill Jones (William H Jones) I'm sure you might; big man, with a beard. I worked with Bill many years later on a ship called the Maurine K. He was master and I was 2/E, we were carrying timber from South America to the US. The Maurine K was formerly the Hannah Bluementhal and before that the MS Pinto...
I had great times on the old Orecrest, good memories.

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Knock twice and ask for Cindy "Look out, here comes Charlie"

Arnold Smith
6th January 2018, 10:43 PM
Hi Don... Yes I remember the old third eng well, as you say he no time for anyone really although I got on with him quite well, 'a professional third' I can't recall his name sadly, was he a Welshmen?....The motorman was Ahmed Hassen and he would forgive me if I have misspelt his name and yes he was always complaining. He would walk up and down in the stokehold with his finger in his ear, singing native airs whilst pretending to drive his sheep "woot ha" he would cry out. Yes and I have stripped down many a De Laval purifier for cleaning. Weren't they a bastard to take apart if they had been left too long?
I joined her in Dagenham and the boss himself came onto the ship for a brief visit before we sailed. I remember getting a brief nod.....Tom.

Arnold Smith
7th January 2018, 07:59 AM
True Happy...but it's funny how they all seem to blend into one sometimes...thinking about a particular job or association...ummm! was that on the Orecrest or this ship or that ship. Whats left of the brain is boiling away trying to sort it out.

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True Cappy...but it's funny how they all seem to blend into one sometimes...thinking about a particular job or association...ummm! was that on the Orecrest or this ship or that ship. Whats left of the brain is boiling away trying to sort it out.

thomas michael
7th January 2018, 12:50 PM
Hi Michael
Thanks for replying, I have a bell of recollection ringing in my head although I don't remember you specifically but hey! it was a long time ago. Do you recall the 3rd mate Bill Jones (William H Jones) I'm sure you might; big man, with a beard. I worked with Bill many years later on a ship called the Maurine K. He was master and I was 2/E, we were carrying timber from South America to the US. The Maurine K was formerly the Hannah Bluementhal and before that the MS Pinto...
I had great times on the old Orecrest, good memories.

- - - Updated - - -

Knock twice and ask for Cindy "Look out, here comes Charlie"

hi Arnold
I think the mates name was bill but as I never referred to him in that manner I would not know for sure, but I believe the captains name was Anderson, also remember he had all his meals served midships by his tiger.
tom

David West
10th January 2018, 06:24 PM
Hi Arnold
I had the pleasure of joining the Orecrest as a first trip cabin boy at the age of 15, on 11th Feb 1960 at, where else, Port Talbot. I left her in August 61 and rejoined her again in Port Talbot as Ass Steward in Feb 62 only to leave in June 62 to join the new-build Skycrest in La Seyne as 2nd Steward until i paid off in Venice in Jan 64.
The last stamp i have in my book from the Orecrest was Captain Anderson a canny Scotsman from Broughty Ferry. His "tiger" may have been Tony Bianchi a Yugoslav guy.
When i first joined her the Old Man was a Capt Quirk from Isle of Man followed by Capt Anderson, we also had for a few months a Capt Williamson, all nice guys. 2nd mate as i recall was polish, again a nice guy who had been in the Navy at the Battle of Narvik so he quite liked the trips up north.

Can't recall many names on the engineering side but one of the chiefs we had was a Scotsman called Binnie, also a 3rd called Trevor "Splash" Waterfall from Stockton.

Nice to hear that someone else served with Ivanovic, it was quite a large company at one time but had been dramatically reduced in size by the early sixties.

Take Care