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Quick reference - BI ships mentioned on this page: Abhona, Amra, Aronda, Aska, Avoca, Bamora, Bandra, Bankura, Barjora, Baroda, Bombala, Buccleuch, Bulimba, Busheer, Camorta, Cap Saint Jacques, Carpentaria, Cashmere, Chakdina, Chanda, Chandpara, Chantala, Chindwara, Chinkoa, Chupra, Chyebassa, Dacca, Dara, Devon, Devonia, Dilwara, Dorunda, Dunera, Eldorado, Ellenga, Ethiopia, Garbeta, Gazana, Gurna, Henzada, Himalaya, Howra, Ikauna, India, Java, Jumna, Juna, Kampala, Karagola, Karanja, Karapara, Karoa, Kenya, Madura, Mahratta, Manora, Matiana, Maxwell Brander, Merkara, Morvada, Mulbera, Nardana, Navarino, Neuralia, Nevasa, Nirpura, Nowshera, Nuddea, Nyanza, Okhla, Orna, Pemba, Penang, Pundua, Punjaub, Quetta, Rajula, Sangola, Santhia, Scotia, Sirdhana, Sirsa, Sir Galahad, Surada, Talamba, Talma, Tanfield, Taroba, Tilawa, Uganda, Umaria, Waipara, Warfield, Waroonga, Woodarra

This page contains abstracts from the BIship logbook for 2003, which has been signed by vsitors from around the world. We welcome your comments, questions and suggestions. We are now using icons to help readability. denotes a specific question and information offered.

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Jennifer Bunn Fowler, US - Monday, December 29, 2003 at 00:45:00
Still a great site! Always seeking any info. on my late father's career with the B.I. Capt. L.A.Bunn. 1920's thru 1960's. Many Thanks.

Paveen Parmar, Zambia - Saturday, December 27, 2003 at 15:54:08
I would like to mention that I travelled on SS Karanja from the port of Mombasa to Bombay nearly 40 years ago. Anb before than on SS Bombay in 1953.

William Menzie, UK - Saturday, December 13, 2003 at 16:44:37
Joined the 'Kenya' as Junior Engineer in December 1958. During my one and only 'spell'with BI (sadly). I also served on the 'Mombasa', 'Kampala', 'Aronda', 'Okhla', 'Rajula' and finally came home on the 'Uganda' as 4th Engineer in 1961. Happy days indeed! Am now retired after 29 years with Rolls-Royce.

MaduraHugh Hughes, UK - Friday, December 12, 2003 at 15:13:17
Very comprehensive site, easy to navigate. I was a cadet, aged 17 & went to sea in August 1939 on the ss Waroonga. We sailed from Falmouth, bound for the States & then oz. After this the cadet ship was dispersed in Columbo & i joined the Baroda, sailing from Colombo to Tuticorin, India. After 2 or 3 trips i joined the Mulbera, bound for the Royal Docks, London, 1940. This was my first trip back to the UK & home. I next joined the Devon & made 2 more trips to Oz. On the 3rd trip bound for New Zealand, 4 days from Panama, off the Galapagos we were shelled & captured by HK Komet, which was disguised as a neutral Japanese ship, the Ryoko Maru. This was August 1941. We were taken as POW on the Komet. The Komet returned from the Pacific, round Cape Horn to Tristan da Cunha, then to Cherbourg, Le Havre, Dunkirk & Cuxhaven. I was a POW at Milag Nord for nearly three and a half years. I took my 2nd mates certificate in Liverpool & joined the Madura (right) as 3rd officer. I sadly had to resign due to ill health.

Jawaid Latief, UK - Tuesday, December 9, 2003 at 11:51:20
Travelled with family between Mombasa and Karachi regularly in 60's and early 70's. Trying to find photos of SS KARANJA

Jack Beesley, Australia - Thursday, December 4, 2003 at 09:41:56
Looking for British India passengers RENTON into Queensland pre 1886. Ship?

Bob Stinchcombe, UK - Monday, December 1, 2003 at 14:22:33
I am trying to find out all about the SS 'Dacca 1882-1890 on which a friend's relative sailed. A crest showing 'Helme Park, South Shields was recently found on a wreck in the Red Sea, which was believed to be the ss 'Dacca'. I believe the relative's surname was Eastment. It would be appreciated if you could advise me where I might obtain information and in particular, any connection with the 'Helme Park etc'. Many thanks for any help you might be able to give. [BI's Dacca, built for the company in 1882, did indeed founder in the Red Sea after running aground on the Daedalus Reef in May 1890. We have no reference to Helme Park - Editor]

Carol Hinchliff, Canada - Saturday, November 29, 2003 at 21:22:57
This is a most interesting site. I found it during a search for information on the Busiris. My great grandfather died at sea on the Busiris, but I am thinking now that there must have been a previous vessel of the same name. He died in 1905. Can anyone shed any light on this for me? [ Busiris was not a BI ship - Editor]

John Thyne, UK - Saturday, November 29, 2003 at 10:15:26
My grandfather was Second Officer on the Sirsa (I) (BI 1883-1908) in 1891 ( baptism certificate) he was resident in Madras. All history lost during WW2 I am looking for more details of him and his father.

Chandpara BI 1949-1970David Ramsbottom, Isle of Man - Thursday, November 27, 2003 at 09:03:21
Excellent source of interesting information about the "good old days". I was a cadet on Chantala 1961 - 1964, then served on Nardana, Bamora, Santhia and Chandpara (pictured left) before spreading my wings. It was good to hear about Dick Cox, Tony Cunningham and John Esslemont from Chantala days. I have attended all the BI reunions in the UK since 1994 and also Penang in 2000 which most enjoyable. I hope to be at Portsmouth next year. I have met many ex colleagues at these reunions and also met many ex BI people when I worked ashore for Gray Mackenzie in the Gulf 1973 - 1978. For the past 20 odd years I have worked as a marine surveyor /ISM auditor for the Isle of Man Government Marine Administration (yes the dreaded surveyor) and had to attend many ships worldwide. I will be retiring next January. Will be delighted to hear from ex colleagues.

Will Stweart, UK - Thursday, November 27, 2003 at 05:35:03
I have enjoyed and appreciated finding the BI web. site in 2002. In October 2003 I attended the Glasgow Luncheon Organised by the Retd BI Engineers Group. An excellent day which enabled me to meet collegues from some 43 years ago and make new contacts. In sea-time on Chantala, Umaria, Chupra and Bankura I met some memorable people and look forward to developing this excellent contact now I have retired. A great of deal of Information from this site has prompted my memory of my youth with BI and an excellent start to a career in engineering on shore. Regards and keep the info coming. Regards.

Richard Barratt, UK - Tuesday, November 25, 2003 at 09:12:18
Researching Captain Thomas Porter Tilling master of ill-fated BI vessel ABHONA which sank in Bay of Biscay Nov 1910. Family connection. Any information appreciated.

Philip Purdie, UK - Monday, November 24, 2003 at 13:53:25
Aren't websites great!

Neuralia BI 1912-1945David Dobson, UK - Saturday, November 22, 2003 at 18:52:31
I have a postcard posted Southampton. 1/10/1937 showing H.M.T.Neuralia. I can provide a copy plus inscriptions if required. [Thank you for the scan, which is available to others on request - Editor]

Chris Deakes, UK - Friday, November 21, 2003 at 17:13:58
Does anyone know how many casualties Karapara could accomodate as a hospital ship? The Haws book says about 350 but I saw elsewhere it was 500. If anyone knows, please contact me on [ Laxon & Perry states that Karapara had 500 beds as hospital ship for the Expeditionary Force (1915) and, later, 341 beds as a Naval Hospital Ship (No 17) (Feb 1916) - Editor]

Nazir Patel, UK - Thursday, November 20, 2003 at 03:43:20
I am privileged to have sailed to and from Zanzibar and Bombay on Amra, Karanja and Kampala in the 50s and 60s.What memorable voyages they were! I also travelled to Durban from Zanzibar, but can't remember the name of the vessel as was too young. Some of my relatives were lost in the sinking of Tilawa. I would like to see information on that disaster.

Eric Voorn, Netherlands - Thursday, November 13, 2003 at 23:21:02
I am researching the history of a teak clincker built lifeboat whitin her keel the initials GRW Ltd No 603 built (?) at the Garden Reach Workshop wharf in Calcutta. I'm restauring her and like to know more.

Bob Turnbull, UK - Monday, November 10, 2003 at 20:45:46
Delighted to find B.I. Web site

Roy Lambeth, UK Monday, November 10, 2003 at 12:02:50
As a schoolboy in 1964 I sailed on an educational school cruise on S.S.Dunera. I have searched your ship list to see the history of Dunera but cannot find a reference to her other than her trip to Australia with the internees during the war. I would very much like to read her history. [Dunera is referred to in various BI books, including Laxon & Perry and Valiant Voyaging - Editor]

Simon Wattam, UK - Monday, October 20, 2003 at 23:56:19
trying to find out where I went on a school trip starting fron Dubrovnic in yugo late oct 1973 fnnishing in malta nov 73 on ss NEVASA

Brian Warburton, UK - Monday, October 13, 2003 at 08:57:14
I see reference to Peter Paget. Is this Peter Jeremy Spencer Valantine Paget? 3RD. Mate on Woodarra 1958. Happy times in OZ

John Robb, Australia - Saturday, October 11, 2003 at 14:52:38
I was never an employee of B.I. but I was an apprentice with Barclay Curle from 1954-1959 and helped build some of the ships listed here, including the beautiful Nevasa

Chris Hutson, Australia - Thursday, October 9, 2003 at 02:41:39
Want to make contact with Dave Rankin who posted a comment on March 29, 2001. Dave, if you went to Prince Edward School in Salisbury please contact me at

Diana Stewart, UK - Wednesday, October 8, 2003 at 19:14:49
My father, Dr. George Stewart was with the BI as shore doctor in Bombay from 1949 to 1962, then as Surgeon Superintendent of P & O and BI in London until his retirement in 1976.

Terry Lilley, UK - Wednesday, October 8, 2003 at 15:47:36
Joined CHINDWARA on her maiden voyage Jan.1950 at Swan Hunters. Still in touch with Henry Severs, Brian Agnew, Peter Paget and John Cooley.

BMN Kamaruddin, Malaysia - Tuesday, October 7, 2003 at 11:02:10
Nice to be in touch with BI again

Bob Browne, New Zealand - Sunday, October 5, 2003 at 09:02:01
Good to see you are still around Ian Woolstencroft. I am in touch with Gordon Wood in NZ so Carpentaria staff are alive and well. A fisherman gave me a BI mag from 1970 the other day so it has reminded me to get on touch with others.

Arthur Jones, UK - Sunday, October 5, 2003 at 00:26:48
My grandfather, William Jones (1879-1924), was a chief engineer with the BI. I have his Discharge book. He died of enteric fever in Calcutta in 1924. His last ship was the "Gazana".

Tracey Stobie, New Zealand - Friday, October 3, 2003 at 23:30:14
Has anyone got information on the following ships for the period 1870 to 1897, Edinburgh, Singapore, Geelong, Avoca, Pera, Pekin, Java, Eldorado , Navarino. Also ?carrnorfa? [Camorta] hard to read writing any ideas. Sailing in 1881 1882

Lynn Claridge-King, UK Thursday, October 2, 2003 at 07:38:22
I sailed on Nevasa 5-19 August 1972 on a schools cruise to Funchal, Casablanca, Malaga and Lisbon. I had a superb time and always wanted to cruise again but could not until my childen left home in 1990. I played the piano in the ships concert and can still remember that I was in Howard dormitory on D deck. At some point we were filmed but I have no idea what for and I have never seen it. Happy days and the best way to travel.

Mark Dodge, US - Tuesday, September 30, 2003 at 20:55:22
Seeking information regarding the rescue by BI ship KARAGOLA of the Dornier Flying Boat (D-2053) Gronland-Wal between October 10th and October 17th in 1932. This aircraft became the first ever to circle the globe as a seaplane. One of the propellers cracked in flight over the Mergui Archipeligo and the 4-man crew safely ditched the aircraft. After being towed into Rangoon by the KARAGOLA, repairs were made and the crew completed the flight in a total of 111-days. I am searching for any newspaper clippings or photographs of the aircraft and her crew (Captain Hans Wolfgang von Gronau) whilst they were ashore. I am preparing research for a written narrative and a series of paintings depicting the ventures of this flight. In advance, thank you for any suggestions or comments about this request. Best regards

Paola St George - Tuesday, September 30, 2003 at 17:45:42
My Father Joseph George Essaye joined BI in 1942 as a Purser on SS. Tilawa. I am trying to find anyone who remembers him or may have any information about him. Dad survived the attack in November 1942 and continued to work on BI ships until 1944. He sailed on the SS.Bandra from Bombay to Calcutta from May to July 1943,SS.Ikauna Bombay to Calcutta August to December 1943 and the SS.Howra from December 1943 until June 1944. My father's name was Joseph George Essaye, but he might have been known as George. Does anyone remember him, or anything about him.

Tracey Stobie, New Zealand - Tuesday, September 30, 2003 at 10:23:59
Simon Langlois,UK, information about GGG Grandfather can be found at National Maritime Museum Greenwich. BI records held there. Also at Public Record Office. I have had great results tracing my GG Grandfather at both these places.

Mike Bowman, Australia - Monday, September 29, 2003 at 03:22:15
Dont know why I have not joined in earlier, an absolutely fascinating page,many thanks. I attended the 3 reunions and hopefully will be at the next (Goa?) Joined BI 26 Sept 55 in Hull, Chantala, other first trippers were Heffer, Sadie Thompson, Oscar Wilde, Pat Laverack, have met Chicky Long,Ackky Cutlack,Henry Cox and Cutmore Sahib, Buzz Bee and Garry Ruaux again, nobody has really changed! The BI Centenary sticks in my mind, it was also Herbie Boles birthday, in Colombo, I think, Chakdina? Which one we celebrated most is a question I cannot answer! Maybe Herbie will recall! served in Chinkoa, Nyanza, Nuddea and as 3/o in Pundua under Capt Hamilton then accidentally fell into the RN. Served for 8 years (and got them to pay for my Masters Ticket!) transferred to the Army (honest!), did a bit of surveying, went off to the Solomons as Supt of Marine for 5 years then 6 months at Dover with Stena to refresh my ticket then Shetlands, thence Darwin in 94 as Director of Marine with the NT Government, 97 transferred to NT Emergency Service. Probably the BI days were the best of all, I can hardly remember people from the RN or Army but somehow BI characters are still fresh in the mind and one meets new friends at each reunion, it is now almost 50 years ago which makes it rather special. I will monitor the Logbook avidly in the future.Bot Salaams

Sunny Gurna, US - Sunday, September 28, 2003 at 23:27:01
I am surpised to find out that there was a ship named " GURNA ". Many of these name sound Indian. My native place is a very small ( less than 100 families ) village in northern India. Till today I was under the imperession that thats where all the Gurna's come from. I will thankful if anybody can guide me to where can I get more information about that ship and how it got its name. [Many BI ship names had their origin in India and the Subcontinent. According to L&P, Gurna was named after the town in Bihar of that name (now Ghurna) - Editor]

John Macdonald, UK - Saturday, September 27, 2003 at 18:05:27
My Great Grandfather served on several BI Ships between 1867 and 1873 India under James Baxter, Mahratta under Duncan Scott, Cashmere under James McCullen, Scotia under James Avery, Himalaya under C D Atkinson Penang and Busheer as Master, Punjaub under Withers, Scotia and Ethiopia(1) as Master. I have pictures of some of these in L & P (India, Himalaya, Busheer and Ethiopia??) and some descriptions in L & P and elsewhere. Does anyone know of any pictures of the others?

Charles Cook - Mon, 22 Sep 2003 12:56:21
My great, great grandfather John Joseph Royal was a carpenter on board ss Henzada and was buried in the Red Sea on Henzada 24, August 1887. Could you possibly point me in a direction were I could find out more about the ship, particularly voyage details and pictures. [ Laxon & Perry British India Steam Navigation contains details of Henzada and a photo - Editor]

Gill Eillis, Australia - Friday, September 19, 2003 at 03:05:44
My grandmother was a domestic servant on the ss Waipara for the voyage 1910/1911. To Jessica Winkelkolkotter US. I saw the passenger list at the Qld state archives in Runcorn on the 15/9/03 but only took a copy of the relevant details for my grand mother. Hope this helps you at all.

Michael Hart, Australia - Thursday, September 18, 2003 at 04:15:35
Visited to out together a collection of pictures of ships my father was an engineer on. We left the company to take up a career as a land based marine engineer after being a Chief Engineer with the BI. He worked Asia, the Middle East, and the Australia Japan areas. My father William (Bill) Byers Hart passed away in Sydney Australia on 17/01/2003.

David Rorison, Australia - Wednesday, 17 Sep 2003 18:05:47
In 1942 I was an Engineer on Cathay when we had to abandon ship, while in the lifeboat we were ordered to row to Karanja,╩I was in charge at the time and I could see the the lights on shore so we headed for them. I later heard that Karanja had been sunk. Obiviously this is not true as I have learned from my Computer.Cathay of course, was a P&╩O ship Just thought you might be interested. Iam now 83 & living in NSW

John & Linda Simkins, UK - Wednesday, September 17, 2003 at 14:19:52
Really enjoyed browsing through the website. Well done John (Prescott). We think you need paying!! Happy memories.

Stan Summerfield, Australia - Wednesday, September 17, 2003 at 11:06:32
Engineers ex Nevasa 66/67 Pete smith Bill Smith Later a superintendant with a P&O group company. where are they now?

Albert Ross, USA - Wednesday, September 17, 2003 at 02:40:20
Nothing but fond and happy memories remain about my years "in" the BI. What an education and grounding into being a sailor with respect for safety, truth and the elements.

Phil Bulman, UK - Sunday, September 14, 2003 at 09:10:26
A brilliant and informative website, I have spent many hours here looking at my old vessels and seeing their final destination. well done

Geoff Woodland - Sat, 13 Sep 2003 10:57:57
I was scrolling through the Logbook abstracts and came across a request from Ian Graham on 03 July 2003 for pictures of the Pundua╩╩and that╩you or someone had added a picture - would you have Ian Graham's e-mail address as I may have╩sailed with him and I couldn't╩find him in the list of members.

Myra King, Australia - Wednesday, September 10, 2003 at 05:35:41
This is a very interesting site. I was particularly interested to see you had songs & verses. My Great grandfather James John HAVINDEN, was a Lighterman on the River Thames, as was his father and brothers. On another side of our family, a G G grandfather Charles SOUNDY,was a barge builder, around Rotherhithe. J.J. Havinden sailed his own vessell " Ebenezer " to Australia in 1854, arriving in January 1855. This was a 47 ft. sloop, which was built on the Thames in 1820.

John Williams, UK - Monday, September 8, 2003 at 21:07:46
served on Devonia 1962 to 1965 as plumber.I remember big Willy Cameron[ch lecky] and his second Tony Sowerbutts.George Harper was second engineer but not initialy he was third and later stepped up.I feel I ought to know Ivan Leitch and Pete Durham but sorry fellers I cant recall you.Hardly surprising it was a long time ago and a lot of water has passed under the bridge since then.If any of you are struggling to remember me perhaps a little reminder might be in order.I originally hail from Mersyside eventually left Devonia shortly after marrying my wife Janet Mitchell [stewardess].If any of you out there remember me and feel like getting in touch I would be chuffed to hear from you.

Doreen Rafferty, USA - Sunday, September 7, 2003 at 13:42:44
searching for crew lists 1824 t0 1900 thanks doreen ex womens royal navy

Steve Clarke, UK - Wednesday, September 3, 2003 at 14:25:12
Very evocative - opened up so many doors of good times, some/few not so good times, and tons of nostalgia

Peter Hore, UK - Wednesday, September 3, 2003 at 10:40:27
I am writing the obituary for national (UK) newspaper of Captain Charles William "Bill" Leadbetter who served in the BI Steam Navigation Co approximate dates 1930-36 and 1946-1971. He commanded 18 BI ships in that time - does anyone remember him or can anyone tell me which ships he commanded and and what routes, etc? Thank you.

Philip Wiggs, UK - Saturday, August 30, 2003 at 12:33:59
Sailed on Buccleuch (managed by Hain-Nourse) as D/app. then made up to u/cert. 3/0 when original 3/0 paid off. Happy days. Excellent site.

Janet Wood, UK - Friday, August 29, 2003 at 08:40:49
[This entry which refers to the ships Aronda, Barjora, Matiana, Nevasa, Karapara, Warfield, Tanfield, has been removed at the correspondent's own request]

Tony Ekneligoda, Australia - Thursday, August 28, 2003 at 09:01:01
Ex BI deck officer. 67/70. Presently Master on large container vessels. Wish hear from es ship mates

Tim Comyn, UK - Tuesday, August 26, 2003 at 12:50:23
Any body who was on the Galahad with me please get in contact

Stan Summerfield, Australia - Sunday, August 24, 2003 at 05:00:25
To be kept informed of BI events

Alistair Hewitt, USA - Sunday, August 24, 2003 at 02:16:55
Found this site to be great. Sir William MacKinnon was my great uncle. It was interesting going through site and reading about the company he founded.If anyone has any information about Sir William and would like to share, I would be very grateful.

Brian Sims, UK - Saturday, August 23, 2003 at 11:25:03
The Chakdina was sunk on 5th December 1941 by U81 off Sollum Egypt.She was carrying approx.300 British and New Zealand wounded troops plus 100 Axis P.O.W..200 survivors were picked up by Farndale and Thorgrim. Amongst them was the German Tank General Von Ravenstein who was a P.O.W. Ironically his escort Lt.Col Bernays died in the sinking. A good account of the sinking is in the book "Ravenstein" portrait of a German General by Rowland Ryder. [Thanks Brian. This adds more information following enquiries here by at least three people in the last year. See this and previous archive pages - Ed]

Nur Serinken, Canada - Saturday, 23 Aug 2003 09:43:34
I am researching prisoner of war exchanges between Axis and Allies forces╩╩on 9th of May 1943╩╩at the port of Izmir (Smyrna) Turkey for an article. Guichen (Cap Saint Jacques) under BI management was one of the ships. I would be grateful if you have any information about this vessel.

Simon Langlois, UK - Wednesday, August 20, 2003 at 01:00:13
My Gt. Gt. Gt. Grandfather Edward George Hacquoil was a BI captain. He left BI in 1893 (after returning home from India, after a 3 year trip, to find that he had had a child who had died at just two and a half, having never seen its father.) I haven't been able to find out anything about his career in BI up to that point, or in which ships he served. Almost 100 years later, I followed in his footsteps and ended up at sea with P&O. Unfortunately, by that time they had long since stopped keeping old records, which may have had useful information. Can anyone tell me where I might find out about my ancestor Captain Hacquoil, and the ships on which he sailed?

Naseem Somji, UK - Tuesday, August 19, 2003 at 03:29:21
Does anyone recall any record of a young Indian stowaway called Ali(bhai) Manji, who boarded a ship bound for Uganda, in the late 1800's? I'm trying to trace the history of my great-grandfather, who left Jamnagar, Gujarat, India at the age of around 12, and went on to build a fortune in Jinja, which was then usurped by business associates when his truck was apparently sabotaged, resulting in my great-grandfather losing his legs, and eventually his life. The names Bahadur Ali Mawji and his wife Fatmabai have also been mentioned in passing. Please get in touch, even if you think it may be insignificant.

Neil Morse, Australia - Sunday, August 17, 2003 at 10:35:23
I am seeking any details relating to Captain A F G Warrington RNR. I understand he was Master of Nirpura and he is stated to have been on the Burma run. His headstone mentions 'Late Captain British India S Nav Coy Ltd'. He died in 1950. Any assistance appreciated. to

Deirdre McDougall, Australia - Sunday, August 17, 2003 at 04:08:33
I'm still trying to find a manifest of crews aboard Dorunda & Merkara seem to be getting nowhere fast maybe I'm looking in the wrong places any years pre 1885 would be helpful

Alistair Blair, UK - Wednesday, August 13, 2003 at 11:07:28
Can anyone advise what happened to the works of art including Smoke room inlay on Uganda? Indeed similarly Kenya...I had twelve wonderful trips on Uganda with NTS and miss the ship terribly! Thanks [ Inormation received:1. "I acquired (legitimately) the carved wooden figure of a bulldog which was mounted in a niche in the Promenade Deck foyer in Kenya." TK. 2. "When 'KENYA' went for scrap at Civitaveccia RM got hold of the 'Cornucopia' marquetry from the Dining Room staircase. Saw it on his lounge wall in Melbourne." RW. 3. "I was assured by a current employee of the P&0, not residing in the US I add due to the current witch hunting climate here in UK, that the tusks presented to SS Uganda by the Kabaka of Buganda reside resplendent adjacent to Lord Sterlings throne in the Pall Mall office." RO]

Vinod Chohan, Switzerland - Tuesday, August 12, 2003 at 14:54:24
I was interested in ships I have travelled like AMRA, KARANJA, KAMPALA between E .Africa & India in the '50's & '60's I think your statistics/demolition date for KARANJA or AMRA may have some error?

Chris Wilson, UK - Thursday, August 7, 2003 at 12:11:21
Message for Ralph Wood. We served on the Aska in 72-73. Are you still with the Oman Navy? Please get in touch. EMail

Tim Comyn, UK - Sunday, August 3, 2003 at 19:10:28
joined chindwara in 1960 served on dwarka devonia sir galahad, bankura, chinkoa etc anybody there

Ken Ward, Oman - Tuesday, July 29, 2003 at 11:15:33
A merchant ship was torpedoed in Muscat harbour by a Japanese submarine on 28 June 1943, sinking at her anchorage. Local history names her as either the "Dahpu" or the "Dahiu" and that she belonged to the BI line. Your excellent website does not seem to mention her and I wonder if anybody is able to cast some light on this puzzle?

Simon Winkworth, UK - Monday, July 28, 2003 at 21:39:16
My Dad, Micheal, was First Mate on the Rajula until she was sold. He died in 1992, and my Mum, Celia, would love to get hold of the words of the BI grace that was said, she thinks, on Channel nights on the cadet ships. If anyone has them, or can remember them, it would be great if you could e-mail them to me. [1. Michael Winkworth was on the Chindwara and I do not remember any grace on Channel nights, but it was a long time ago. I sailed with Mike again on one of the "S" about the time Simon was born. RKJ. 2. The only recollection of recital at Channels night aboard Chindwara, was when Merv Hutton did a complete rendition of 'Eskimo Nell' . Those were the days! GE]

James Cockburn, UK - Saturday, July 26, 2003 at 17:33:43
John Robertson Australia. Sadly unsble to help on your ex chief E. Have no knowledge of him nor any family name contact. My own father was killed whilst we were infants and thereafter little contact with that side of the family. Mothers side however were Robertsons an she and my grandparents hailed from Shetland. Many Shetlanders ended up in Aus and Nz. This BI Logbook has prompted me to wonder of the whereabouts of ex shipmates. Recall on Joining Chinkoa as a panchsab under eck number Glenday.

Deirdre McDougall, Australia - Saturday, July 26, 2003 at 06:11:52
Reading thru archives I found a Lyn Guest June 2003 & Tracy Stokes NZ may 2003 we all have the same interest in the Dorunda & Merkara 1880's I have looked up the passenger lists in state library Melbourne & have found my links to family could these 2 ladies email me as I would like to know more about these 2 ships

Mario Grima, UK - Friday, July 25, 2003 at 20:15:25
I was on a school trip aboard SS Nevasa in 1971/2, from Grendon Road School Birmingham. A film crew was aboard and made a documentary called "And Teddy Bear Comes Too". I am trying to find a copy of the film. Can anyone help me?

Derek Hargreaves, UK - Thursday, July 24, 2003 at 20:54:53
Reference Roger Haddock's query of 6 May 2003 - The Signal Letters (Call Sign) of the Dunera were GBBR

Deirdre McDougall, Australia - Wednesday, July 23, 2003 at 06:10:39
I would like to know about the trips Dorunda did to India and Australia my Great Grandfather John Robertson was a shipwright and made several trips to countries above he came to Australia abt 1882

Ian Fears, UK - Wednesday, July 16, 2003 at 14:50:01
enjoyed my short time with BI was ro on CHUPRA when scrapped in Hong Kong and then for a short time on Amra , always thought BI was better than most companies.

Patrick Rozario, UK - Wednesday, July 16, 2003 at 11:45:56
sailed with Bi from 1948 1953as engineer

Alberto Cunto, Italy Tuesday, July 15, 2003 at 17:10:33
For Zaza Gurri. The Talamba ship was a full hospital ship, bombed juli 10, 22.05 hours, near Avola. Sunk 5 miles off shore. 400 patients were saved but 5 member of 168 crew were lost for injuries. For other information contact me to e-mail

Bill Jones, Australia - Friday, July 11, 2003 at 03:53:02
Traveled to Thailand and back on Maxwell Brander 1964. Interested in sailing dates for history of Aust Army Unit

Ivor Lloyd, UK - Thursday, July 10, 2003 at 20:39:15
A few weeks ago I met up with Walter Blewer after 59years. He was a Cadet on the SURADA and I was a Radio Officer. We last saw each other when the Surada was torpedoed by U188 on 26th January 1944.

David Jones, UK - Thursday, July 10, 2003 at 15:36:38
Nice to see the ships again. I'm sitting here in my office with 2 pictures of the Karanja (I was uncert 3rd mate there) and the Manora (still in BI colours)

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John Robertson, Australia - Sunday, July 6, 2003 at 01:58:50
James Cockburn, are you any relation to Tom Cockburn. He was my Cheif Engineer on the Chyebassa in the sixties. My email

Max Farrugia, Malta - Saturday, July 5, 2003 at 21:39:54
I really enjoyed surfing this webpage. I managed to find some infomation on the subject I need but be very happy if anyone can send me details on the following four ships. (a) Talma, (b) eridan (c) battory, (d) breconshire. If anyone need any information i can help if i already possess the information. Photos apprecaited too. I am looking for information regarding the TALMA which was a BI ship in service between 1923 and 1949. Since i need this information for a thesis i am preparing for my university studies i will be very much pleased if you can send me details as much as possible. Pictures during her war services are apprecaited. Thanks in advance

Pundua BI 1945-1967Ian Graham, UK - Thursday, July 3, 2003 at 11:40:54
I would love to find a picture(s) of mv Pundua. Can anyone help?

James Cockburn, UK - Wednesday, June 25, 2003 at 20:38:25
Served on Chinkoa, Dara, and Orna . Thereafter with BP and laterly Anchor Line , Glasgow. A blast from the past

Roger Haddock, UK Monday, June 16, 2003 at 15:09:43
Hi all the B.I people out there, I wonder if anyone can help. I was a passenger on Cruise 126 SS Nevasa in 1965. Whist we were on board a film crew from Cygnet films was making a documentary about our cruise. I cant remember what it was called but I would dearly like to find a copy as I am featured on several places. Cygnet films went into Liquidation some years ago so no joy tracing them, if anyone knows of a copy please email me and let me have the details I would love to get it on video.

Rachana Jadhav, UK - Monday, June 16, 2003 at 13:35:10
I am researching the SS Kampala and SS Karanja for Tamasha theatre company. We are putting on a play about the generation of young asians who came over in the late sixties and are looking for any photographs of the inside of any of these two particular ships. It would be great to get some insight in to what went on onboard, the parties etc if anyone can help it would be appreciated and of course complimentary tickets to the show would not go amiss. Thank you its been good to hear all the stories.

John Aaron, Australia - Monday, June 16, 2003 at 07:00:47
My brother, Leslie Aaron, served in the Mulbera from December 1943 to December 1944 as Fifth Engineer. The info I have gathered to date from your excellent website has given me a starting point on the ship's details, but I would be interested in hearing from anyone who sailed in her (particulary in 1943/44) and possibily, anyone who may have a photo of the ship. You are providing a valuable service to all those interested in the sea. Although I sailed under the White Ensign for 23 years.

Lyn Guest, Australia - Wednesday, June 11, 2003 at 07:20:01
My great great Grandparents Henry and Ann Gordon sailed from Plymouth to Australia in 1882 in the ship the Dorunda, arriving in Brisbane on 21st September 1882. They had their son William and daughter Rachael with them and I don't know how many other family members travelled with them. I cannot find any trace in the Passenger Lists for that particular voyage.

John Wetherell - Sunday, June 8, 2003 at 18:23:07
My Father, Jack Wetherell was an Engineering Officer (3rd) in The BI after WW2 and into the Early 50s. He has passed on, and have been going through some old photos, he thought highly of his time sailing with the BI

Don Pescud, Australia - Saturday, June 7, 2003 at 09:07:55
I am researching the voyage of the Hospital Ship KAROA which sailed from Singapore to Melbourne Australia via Fremantle carrying ex-POWs (Australian).The Karoa sailed from Singapore mid to late July 1945. Any info would be greatly appreciated.

George Taylor, Australia - Thursday, June 5, 2003 at 06:26:52
Only just discovered this great site. Sailed on Pemba, Amra, Chanda, Santhia, Chakdina, Bulimba.

Zaza Gurri, Italy - Wednesday, June 4, 2003 at 12:20:31
Talamba drawingI would like know about the Talamba [shown left] ship sunk or lost of Sicily, because I would to create one database only for Sicily. I'm a scuba diving, and maybe I discovered the Talamba thank's for your future informations. sorry for my bad English

Sallahudin Chaudhri, UK - Monday, June 2, 2003 at 13:59:05
having travelled by Karanja and Kampala from Mombasa to karachi and stopping over at sychells i feel very copassionate about these lovely ships which fascinated me during my child hood voyages. My dad worked for East African Railways & Harbours which gave us the opertunitytotravel on these lovely ships

Lin Ashford, UK - Sunday, June 1, 2003 at 03:26:54
If you served aboard SS Nevasa in either her troopship or educational cruise role, please visit our new forum at and find old friends and colleagues. A new website dedicated to Nevasa is under construction and if you have an materials that would be useful in our research we would be grateful if you would consider helping us in our research.

Russ Irving, UK - Saturday, May 31, 2003 at 16:40:31
I sailed on Merkara, Manora & Morvada as 1EEO just after the ''gold rush''!!! after which the ships became P& O Strath M,s There aren't many names I recognise on the log entries,sailed with Dave Macvicker log entry's in 2002.Happy times on The ''M's Hope to see some more entries in future lets get it going!!!

Frank Erhorn, UK - Saturday, May 31, 2003 at 12:47:41
Delighted to find names I remember on the site. John Van Horn yes I did marry that girl and am with her still 35 years on. Only SHE was from Newton Abbot and I was from Newcastle. I met you on KENYA not Uganda. Also pleased to see extracts from Lyndon Johnson and Phil Incledon . I still have photos of you two at a party in my cabin on KENYA . Also nice to see an extract from Alec (THE LAIRD) Malcolm.If anyone wants to get in touch or you want a copy of the photo(s) my e-mail is Hope to hear from you.

Roger Haddock, UK - Friday, May 30, 2003 at 11:45:08
Excellent website very informative - Former voyage crew cruise 126 SS Nevasa and later on SS Uganda

Don Williams, UK - Monday, May 26, 2003 at 23:43:18
I have a photograph postcard of the British India SN Co M.S. Dilwara. I was a passenger on her when she sail from Southampton UK to Aden in 1959. I would be happy to share it with anyone to whom it would be of interest..

Don Pescud, Australia - Saturday, May 24, 2003 at 11:01:35
I am researching the voyage of the hospital ship KAROA which sailed from Singapore to Melbourne (Australia) via Fremantle late July 1945 bringing Australian POW,s back home. Any information of this voyage would be greatly appreciated.

Banerjee Shyamal, Germany - Friday, May 23, 2003 at 00:13:59
My father was a ship surjeon in BI ships, probably from 1930 till the war broke out and after the war till about 1949. He was a doctor, and his name was Dr. Banerjee. I quite often remember hearing names like Amra, Chyebassa, Sangola, Garbeta, Sirdhana etc. Can any body tell me the name of the ships where he was working as a doctor and approx. the routes the ships took ? My father died sometime ago, and can anybody give me some info.

Tracey Stobie, New Zealand - Tuesday, May 20, 2003 at 03:42:55
Researching Great Great Grandfather who was Master of Dorunda 1882-83 and Merkara, also 1st mate on Chyebassa.

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Bill Highams, UK - Wednesday, May 7, 2003 at 09:26:40
A very good idea to keep some of us oldies in touch and hear from later employees.

Roger Haddock, UK - Tuesday, May 6, 2003 at 22:01:09
Hi, I am looking for the Radio callsigns for : SS Nevasa , SS Uganda & SS Dunera. Former passenger cruise 126 (1965) on Nevassa ,now a marine and aeronautical radio operator. Hope someone can help [Nevasa: GPQV, Uganda: GFRQ - Editor]

William Rait, UK - Friday, May 2, 2003 at 15:33:47
My father, also William Rait, served from 1941 til the ship's sinking in Nov 1942 as Lt.Commander. Pre-war he had also served in the company as 1st engineer.
It was HMS Karanja and it was acting as a troop ship in the Operation Torch landings in North Africa and was sunk on the night of 10/11 nov 1942. I'm not sure of the other ships but I do know that in the late 20's & early 30's he was sailing to India & sub continent. I also should tell you that he survived the attack but was invalided out to the RN reserve after several months in hospital. He finally died in 1968,and although he could never bring himself to return to the sea, he always carried a mariner's true love for it.

Peter Glass, France - Friday, May 2, 2003 at 20:40:02
Fascinating to be able to look back over so many years on the ships of the B.I. and those who sailed in them including ex shipmates of yesteryear

Jos Stirling, UK - Friday, May 2, 2003 at 13:01:14
Looking for my Grandad's ship - he was Captain of Nowshera along with others

John van Horn, UK - Thursday, May 1, 2003 at 20:23:06
I remember you Frank Erhorn,on the Uganda, from Newton Abbott if my memory serves. Did you marry that girl?

Murray Spranklin, Australia - Thursday, May 1, 2003 at 16:32:16
I believe my Grandmother Sarah Murray arrived in Australia from Ireland on the Quetta's last voyage.Would appreciate any Information how to access the passenger lists

David Humpreys, South Korea - Friday, April 25, 2003 at 14:15:29
Great to see so many names of old shipmates and brought back good memories of my time onboard ths Carpentaria, Sirsa, Juna and Chindwara.(1966 - 1971)

Ian Woolstencroft, UK - Wednesday, April 23, 2003 at 15:58:25
Enjoy the Aukland Reunion Captain Peter Farrel (Hertford) at sale 2nd Mate Gordon Wood (Carpentaria)1972 Look after Jim Slater & wife

Peter Haywood, UK - Tue, 22 Apr 2003 14:05:23 +0100
In late 2002, it was decided to form a non-profit making Concert and Marching Band to support the Merchant Navy Association and its members and, to help keep the Red Ensign proudly flying in the eye of the general public. The idea has been warmly welcomed by both the MNA and by the Shipping Industry itself. Although an independent, amateur organisation, the Band has been accorded the great privilege of adopting the title of The Staff Band of The Merchant Navy and it has, as its President, the Commodore of The Royal Fleet Auxiliary.

The Band is a military concert and marching band,comprised of Brass and Woodwind instruments with a small Corps of Drums for marching. All members of the Band have a good standard of playing ability and some are former members of HM Forces Bands. With its nucleus of ex-HM Forces musicians, for those joining the Band with little practical musical ability or experience, the Band provides and excellent educational opportunity for such members to acquire high standards in drill, deportment, musicianship and stand discipline; all qualities that are traditionally associated with professional Military Bands. The services of the Band have already been requested for a number of concert and marching engagements. These include an invitation to feature at the Merchant Navy Service of Remembrance at Tower Hill, London on Sunday 7th September 2003. An invitation has also been extended to the Band to provide the music for the Annual Service of the British and International Sailors' Society at St Columba's Church, Knightsbridge, London in June 2004. [The band has already received some financial support but more is needed. Contact Peter Haywood at ]

Frank Erhorn, UK - Sunday, April 20, 2003 at 11:01:37
Excellent web page,especially for ex BI staff such as myself. It evokes such great memories.

J Horsford, UK - Saturday, April 19, 2003 at 15:41:30
Now youthful pensioner novice internet fascinated find BI logbook links having served Purers Department Dilwara, Kenya, Uganda, Devonia and Nardana 1959 to 1962 before emigrating Rhodesia. Have wonderful memories ships and shipmates whom I'd love to hear from? (eg Hadji Reed and others)

Linda Prince, UK - Saturday, April 19, 2003 at 00:14:11
Spent 3 happy and informative trips aboard SS Nevasa 1972/3 and 4 - many happy memories. I am setting up a Nevasa Reunited site if anyone is interested, contact me on email

Bob Kimmings, UK - Friday, April 18, 2003 at 16:55:40
John V H, remember the Juna, especially one 3rd Mate 'Cunard'and his Christmas ditty shortly before being sent home!!! Contact me on

John van Horn, UK - Saturday, April 12, 2003 at 21:18:00
peter farrel.sailed with you on Sirdhana 1966,i.w crawford captain,bunn bennnet 3rd c.c read fellow cadet, byczkow 3/0/e very good memories running up and down the gulf. would be good to hear from any of you

Pat Pattenden, Australia - Thursday, April 10, 2003 at 11:04:03
Having checked the logbook on numerous occasions, notice many requesting contacts with shipmates without leaving a contact address themselves. For about 5 years now I have been compiling lists for Australasia [300 names & addresses]. A world list of names, [139 pages, with about 10% names] and attempting to list all trips on the Cadetships. If anyone wishes to add any of their contact details on the lists it would be appreciated. Also if you wish details of a certain person, I may be able to help. My contact details are e-mail: I'm still working at sea, so if at work a reply may take a while as I have to get to an Internet cafe. Always interesting reading the latest comments.

Roy Jeffries, Australia - Sunday, April 6, 2003 at 02:31:32
A really good site to belong to, I have been fortunate enough to make contact,with my best man when I got married while serving on the MV Chanda. I am still trying to locate some ships that my wifes grandparents migrated to Australia on in 1887/1888, they are the SS Chyebassa, SS Jumna, SS Bulimba and SS Taroba, ( all BI ships ), if anybody can help me locate a source of obtaining photographs and full detail about these ships, I would be muched obliged.Whilst in the BI, I sailed on the SS Nowshera, SS Nardana and MS Chanda. [Full details of all these ships are contained in Laxon & Perry's British India Steam Navigation Company book, an new edition of which has just been published by Ninety North. Go to to find more information about the book and an order form - Editor]

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Robbie Burns, UK - Friday, April 4, 2003 at 12:08:15
After leaving HMS Conway in 1960, served my appreticeship in Ellenga, Bombala and Chantala. Failed to get through the eye test for 2nd Mate and went into the RAF!

Mathew Daniel, UAE - Thursday, April 3, 2003 at 12:34:31
After reading all the articles, my memories went back to the good old days and the good times that I spent on board B.I. vessels. Also, it gave me an opportunity to recollect and remember old friends with whom I sailed.

Lynda Hughes, UK - Wednesday, April 2, 2003 at 22:05:37
I am desperate to find the seamans records.of my great grandad. Andrew Dodd born 1857. I found him on the 1881 census age 24 living in stockport. He was born in bebington cheshire.I have tried all avenues i know

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