Bob Greenland


I attended Warsash in 1950 then joined the South American Saint Line in company with the then Chief Cadet Captain Tom Wilson and Jock Wallace.  Tom sadly passed away a couple of years ago from the dreaded big "C".

In 1962 having dipped Masters and the demise of the South American Saint Line I decided to swallow the anchor and came ashore and went into banking - I had been a Chief Officer and like so many before and after me thought that shore side was just waiting to employ a thrusting young executive!!  I soon got my "come uppance" and initially had to drive a hire car at night for the princely sum of 1/6d per hour.  This after earning circa £1,500.00 a year as Chief Officer.

I soon learned banking was not for me so I had another go at Masters and got through OK and went to work for a Greek shipping outfit and was involved with anti pollution.  The most interesting job was supervising a team of about 20 ex tanker Masters who we sent round the world supervising tank cleaning operations.  It was during this period that they gave me a short period in command so as to be on equal terms with this very experienced team.

In 1973 I became the Marine Manager for Airscrew Fans Ltd - a company manufacturing inert gas systems and ventilation fans for tankers and offshore structures.  Here I had the opportunity to travel to most parts of the world that had a marine industry.  I became very active and on the main board of British Marine Equipment Council and joined the Honourable Company of Master Mariners and The Nautical Institute and was treasurer of the London branch for a number of years.

In 1979 I joined a Danish Life Raft manufacturing company who wanted to establish themselves in the UK and became the Managing Director of the UK operation.  In 1983 I then became Marine Director of APV Hall International (the old Hall Thermotank).  From the day I joined I knew it was a mistake, my first job was to preside over massive redundancies.  This was followed a year later by my own redundancy and the demise of basically all marine involvement by APV and the close of the premises in Dartford after several hundred years.

I decided to form my own company ACTIVITY MARINE.  This company act as distributors of marine life saving equipment and procurement of associated deck equipment.  It is still trading and although it has had its ups and downs and at the age of 69 I still operate the rationalised business on my own through a small networks of overseas associates and a website (activitymarine.com)

I married Judy in 1958 and had 3 boys, one of which was tragically killed in a swimming accident in Tobago at the age of 26, and now have two delightful grandchildren.

I commanded a Sea Cadet Corps Unit for a number of years and was also appointed to command one of their power driven cadet training ships on a part time basis. (Lt Cdr (SCC) RNR).  I have been and still am an active Freemason (40 years) an active Rotarian, an active member of Probus, Member of the Honourable Company Master Mariners and a Fellow of the Nautical Institute. These days my hobby is golf which I thoroughly enjoy but am absolutely no good at - if only I could get my handicap below 26!!

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