My sea going career started in 1963 with South American Saint Line. Early in September my mother drove me down to KGV Dock in London Berth F to join MV St John.
To say I was nervous would be putting it mildly but having completed a year at King Edward VII Nautical College I was not completely green.
I was directed to the cadet’s quarters where I met the five other cadets with whom I would share my first trip. The senior cadet was Howard Anguish who had spent his entire apprenticeship on St John and this would be his last trip prior to taking his 2nd Mates ticket. The other cadets were Chris Green and Johnny Merret who had about a year’s seniority to me have sailed previously on St Essylt, Peter Voisey who as far as I can recall had come from St Thomas plus another “first tripper” Chris Jupe, he only stayed for one voyage and then left. I understand he was tragically killed in a road accident not long after.
I remained on St John for just under two very happy years. The Saint Liners were lovely ships on a great run. I guess that in many respects we were rather like the Bowater staff as we all viewed a future in B&C with some trepidation.
Our fears though were groundless. When Saint Line was dissolved in 1965 we were all offered positions in B&C with retained rank and seniority. Some accepted and some moved away. But in either event we all looked back on our time with Saint Line with many many happy memories.
My first proper B&C ship was Ayrshire. I was Senior Cadet on her final voyage when she was wrecked on Abd al Kuri in the Arabian Sea.
Until completion of my time as cadet served on various B&C ships including Clan Grant, Constance Bowater, Tantallon Castle and Capetown Castle
Once I had passed my 2nd Mates I started on almost continuous Union-Castle service until 1973.
I sailed as 3rd Officer on Roslin, Rhodesia, Reina del Mar, Rustenburg, Tantallon Castle as well as Alice Bowater.
I sailed as 2nd Officer on Rotherwick, Tantallon, Southampton, Pendennis, Windsor and Good Hope Castles.
In 1979 I was Marine Superintendent running the fleet of ships on Lake Malawi. Sailing as Master on the services passenger vessels.
Since then I have been a Golf Club Professional in Cornwall.
I am still in Cornwall and working as a Certified Paralegal.
After appearing on Who Wants to be a Millionaire.
I have also appeared on The Weakest Link and Won!
First run ashore in Hamburg from St.John
From L to R
Pete Voisey (Cadet), Myself, Howard Anguish (Cadet), Chris Jupe (Cadet), Chris Green (Cadet) 3rd Engineer, Ian Pegg (Radio Officer)
All smart in new uniform just before joining my first ship, St John in KGV London in Sept 1963
Master of Ilala with Chief Officer Kingsley Likukuta on the right and Joshua Chitsonga Chief Engineer on the left.
Lake Malawi 1980
3rd Officer on Reina Del Mar in 1969
From Sept 1962 until July 1963 I attended King Edward VII Nautical College for pre-sea training.
Great fun and included several trips into the North Sea on the training ship Glen Strathallan.