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Thread: gravesend sea school

  1. #11
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    Default Re: gravesend sea school

    Quote Originally Posted by Frederick Lacey View Post
    A bit after my time, I was there Dec. 1949 to Feb 1950.Attachment 28581
    I'm 4th from right front row...a class of sixteen year olds....
    Hi Fred.
    Gravesend and the Vindi had the same pics so much so that I can see myself in all of them'
    Des

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    Default Re: gravesend sea school

    I was at NSTS Set 24th to Dec 30th Catering 1973..

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    Default Re: gravesend sea school

    Frederick Re: #10

    I was at Gravesend from 30-11-53 to 15-1-54, Catering. I sailed on Port Jackson 9-2-54 to 6-6-54 and Port Townsville 7-30-54 to 5-8-54 (H.T.) and 18-8-54 to 1-8-55.

    Then ten months on the La Cumbre (Burries Marks), and the balance of my time on the Castle Boats ("Big Ships").

    I too have never come across anyone who did time with me in Gravesend, sometimes wonder if I was in Solitary. Neither found anyone who sailed on the same ships as me either.

    I think mainly the National Service had a lot to do with it. True it never crossed my mind at sixteen, eighteen was decades away. However, there were many I sailed with who packed it in and went in the "Kate" (Army) as they didn't want to stay in until they were twenty-six or they jumped ship somewhere.

    I wanted to get married and I quite frankly I didn't see much of a future in England. I wanted to be a hotel head chef and in those days all the top jobs were taken by French, German, Swiss or Italians. The English were not rated much in the shore trade as cooks and neither was Brit food. And I wanted to be with my (now ex-) wife. So we married and emigrated to Canada and then to the States, so I suppose that's another style of jumping ship too.

    With the exception of the La Cumbre I enjoyed my time in, and thankful to this day to the various chefs of the Castle boats and the chefs at Union-Castle school for teaching me my trade. Sailed with some great mates too.

    As I remember it though, excepting the Head Chefs, pursers and a few second stewards, cooks and wingers
    were mostly under twenty-six years old, it seemed like twenty-six and out.

    Cheers, Rodney

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    Default Re: gravesend sea school

    Yes Rodders, it was in those days a young mans game.

    Most of the general crew were young and fit, but you had to be to stay the course.
    The working day was long, particularly for catering,14 hours was often the course.

    Conditions on some ships not so good, though with UCL I did well.

    Then being young many wanted to marry and raise a family, not so easy when a long way from home.

    But they were great times and set most of us up for a good life ashore, we learned much of life the hard way at sea, made shore life a lot easier.
    Happy daze John in Oz.

    Life is too short to blend in.

    John Strange R737787
    World Traveller

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