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THAMES TUGS


 
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LATEST NEWS, PHOTOGRAPHS AND UPDATES


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IMPORTANT NOTICE

 

Over the last couple of months at least two people have contacted me via the contact button asking for details of how to send photographs to this site. I have responded to both but my message is bouncing back undeliverable. PLEASE PLEASE when contacting me ensure that the email address you are sending me is totally correct otherwise I cannot respond. To those who may be fuming as they have not had a reply I would say many thanks for your interest but please try again giving me your correct contact details.

 
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LATEST NEWS AND PHOTO'S

YOU CAN NOW JOIN US ON OUR FACEBOOK PAGE    -   HERE
 
 
 
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IMPORTANT.

 

PLEASE NOTE THAT THE E-MAIL ADDRESS TO CONTACT ME OR THIS SITE HAS ALTERED. ALL PREVIOUS E-MAIL ADDRESSES YOU MAY HAVE ARE INVALID AND CANNOT BE ACCESSED.

 

FIRST CONTACT SHOULD BE MADE VIA THE CONTACT SITE BUTTON IN THE TOP MENU. MANY THANKS.

IF YOU WISH YOU CAN ALSO CONTACT ME PERSONALLY VIA MESSENGER ON THE ASSOCIATED FACEBOOK PAGE  THAMES TUGS AND TUGGIES. [CLICK THE FACEBOOK LINK JUST ABOVE THIS NOTICE]

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23-9-2021
 
 
Tilbury ex Esso Tilbury near York. Photo by and with permission of Patrick Hill.
 
 
 
 
1-9-2021
 
 
SAURIA Photo courtesy Rick Vince
 
 
 
 
9-8-2021
 
 I am indebted to Gary Morse for the following photo and the information on Veitch Wilson.
 
 
 
VEITCH WILSON Photo courtesy Gary Morse
 
We found this photograph in box of family photographs originally belonging to my mother. I entered the boat name in a search engine and your amazing site gave me all the information I was looking for. The photograph shows the Veitch Wilson whilst in service with Price's Candle Co from 1921 to 1937. My great grandfather, William Witt, was an Engineering Toolmaker for Price's until he retired in September 1942. He is second from the right, wearing a tie.

In 1889 Price's took over the Manchester lubricants business of J. Veitch Wilson, Halliday and Co. John Veitch Wilson moved to Battersea as the head of Price's Lubricating Oil Department where he was responsible for the firm's later pre-eminence as a manufacturer of lubricating oils for petrol and diesel engines. That is whom the boat was named after. -Gary Morse.
 
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NEW PAGE
 
5-8-2021 
 
A new page featuring HMRT ATTENTIF has been created thanks to donation of Photos and information from Simon Matthews, whose grandfather was a signalman on Attentif during WW2. To view click HERE
 
20-8-2021
More photos and details added to HMRT ATTENTIF page. 
 
 
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APPEAL FOR INFORMATION
 
 
I HAVE RECEIVED A MESSAGE FROM GORD BURT, COUSIN OF EDWARD WILLIAM BURT WHO WAS LOST IN EMPIRE WOLD, APPEALING FOR ANY FURTHER INFO, PICS OR MEMORIES THAT ANYONE MAY HAVE OF TED BURT. IF ANYONE HAS ANYTHING TO CONTRIBUTE OR WISHES TO CONTACT GORD PLEASE MAKE CONTACT WITH THE SITE VIA THE CONTACT BUTTON IN TOP MENU AND I WILL PASS DETAILS ON. MANY THANKS.
 
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SAD NEWS

MICHAEL HOUCKHAM

 
Regret to announce that I have been informed that Mike Houckham, former Gravesend Tuggie and in recent years the driving force behind the preservation of the Cervia at Ramsgate has sadly passed away.
Mike was a very early and constant contributor to Thames Tugs website and I met him on a number of occasions at Ramsgate and greatly valued his friendship and knowledge. Rest in Peace Mike.
 
 
 
Advised that Mikes funeral will be held on Friday 13th August 2021 at Thanet Crematorium, Manston Road, Margate CT9 4LY. at 12.15.   Anybody who worked with or knew Mike is invited to attend.

 
 
 
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WENO. Photo Derek  Brown colln
 
 
 
Photo Derek brown colln
 
 
Photo Derek Brown colln
 
 
K G. Photo Derek Brown colln.
 
 
 
JOHN WILSON. Photo Derek Brown colln
 
 
BRENT BROOK. Photo Derek Brown colln
 
 
 
SYDNEY G. Photo Derek Brown colln
 
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Over the next few days will be adding some photos from the collection of Dennis McCarthy. These have very kindly been sent by his daughter Sharon who advises that 'Mac' began his career on the first diesel tug at Wapping [Sun XVIII], and came down to Gravesend in 1959. He finished on the Sun XXVII, before teaching the younger generation in Hull. Dennis had been retired 26 years.
 
C340
L-R Pat Mahoney, Brian Biggs [r], Dennis McCarthy. Rest unknown. As ever other identities welcomed. Photo courtesy Sharon Freebody.
 
20-11-2020 Front row right could be Lou Hadler -- Bill Cheeseman
 
3-12-2020 from Nolly Harvey -- Front L-R Pat Mahoney; Dennis McCarthy; Eddie Fryer; Rear L-R Brian Biggs; Geoff Couves; Michael Kennedy; Eric Wotton.
 
 
5-12-2020 From Brian Biggs--  Rear- Brian Biggs; Ricky Dyer.;Colin Tuffield; Eric Watton.  Front Right - . George Pridmore. (Master)



 
 
C330
DENNIS McCARTHY with his son Terry at Wapping in 1953. Courtesy Sharon Freebody.
 
 
 
 
C331
DENNIS McCARTHY [front left] with crew. Courtesy Sharon Freebody.
 
I am sure the other crew members will soon be named!!
 
photo c331 top row first left possibly Stan Benge later captain  - William Cheeseman
 
Hi Sharon was with your dad for several years on SUN XXII.  C331 Front row Dennis and Capt Stanley Smith. Extreme right Tom Scott.. - Keith Toms.
 
 
 
C332
Unknown. Courtesy Sharon Freebody
 
 
 
C333
Unknown. Courtesy Sharon Freebody.
 
 
C334
Unknown. Courtesy Sharon Freebody
 
 
 
C335
Unknown. Courtesy Sharon Freebody.
 
C335. Eric Musgrove Weatherly. -- Keith Toms.
 
 
 
C336
Unknown. Courtesy Sharon Freebody.
 
Is this Reg Merchant? William Cheeseman
 
 
 
C337
Unknown. Courtesy Sharon Freebody.
 
C338
Unknown. Courtesy Sharon Freebody.
 
C339
Unknown. Courtesy Sharon Freebody.
 
C339. 2nd left Stanley Smith. 3rd left Tom Scott. Rear Ted Stevens???-- Keith Toms.
 
T114
SUN XVIII with Cutty Sark in Millwall Dock. Courtesy Sharon Freebody.
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WATER LANE. Photog unknown K Watson colln

IDENTIFIED!!

C244
 
Hello Pete,

I’ve managed to track down George Lowe’s last surviving daughter , Patricia Swanson, now in her 90s, lives in Poole Dorset, showed her the mystery photo, with no clues, and straightaway the said that’s her uncle Arthur Edwin Lowe, born 1902, died 1954 , elder brother of George Lowe, skipper of the Muria, died as you know on the brige, favourite pastime on board, lower the lifeboat, row out into the middle of the river, and read a book!

Regards mike


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 I was very interested in the extract from the log of the Empire John....the last section would have been from when dad was on board  and great to see a message posted on 13-3-2013 by Ronald S Osborne who served on Empire John.

Please find attached.  Images taken by dad ...Peter Clifton between 21.11.1944 - 20.1.1946 while on Empire John

Unfortunately dad died back in 2013......but we did get his Arctic Star...for his time on the Russian Convoys...just too late for dad to see.
I wish we had found your site earlier so i could have got a more detailed explanation of the photos.

Kind Regards
Nick Clifton 
 
C329
Crew of Empire John 1944/45. Photo courtesy Nick Clifton
 
If anybody can identify any of the crew please contact this site. Thanks.
 
 
Empire John. Photo courtesy Nick Clifton
 
 
Empire John. Photo courtesy Nick Clifton
 
 
Empire John towing submarine. Photo courtesy Nick Clifton
 
 
Peter Clifton's discharge book. Courtesy Nick Clifton.
 
 
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Painting of Atlantic Cock kindly sent by Doug Hardy. I dont know if this another Ian Boyd painting??
 
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A series of photos made available by Tony Atkinson regarding the transfer of the lighterage tug George Salt into Brazilian Ownership and renaming Sao Cristovao.
 
At Liverpool prior to going to Brazil. Note addition of lifeboat.
 
 
Newspaper coverage.
 
 
As Sao Cristovao in Brazil
 
 
 
 
 
Transfer of registration papers. All pics courtesy Tony Atkinson.
 
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BADIA [2] in July 1952. Photo Tom Rayner/Tony Atkinson colln.
 
 
HAM August 1975  photo Tony Atkinson
 
 
MERIT August 1976 photo Tony Atkinson
 
 
TOUCHSTONE August 1976 photo Tony Atkinson
 
 
VESPA photog unknown Tony Atkinson colln
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SUN XXVI under tow from Sheerness to Thames Haven, Photo Doug Hardy.
 
 
SUN XXVI supplying water  at Thames Haven. Photo Doug Hardy.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Sorry about the condition of this , it is over 100 years old and very very fragile but I have done my best with it. A letter from the Admiralty regarding the Rescue Tug Service 1917-1918. Very kindly given to me by Harold Russell.

 
 
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Photos kindly sent in by Tony Atkinson showing the career of TC&D's DANUBE II.
 
 
 
 
DANUBE II underway on the Thames. Photog unknown courtesy Tony Atkinson.
 
 
As NORGROVE in dry-dock at Falmouth. Photo K Hancock courtesy Tony Atkinson.
 
 
NORGROVE at Falmouth. Photo P A Vicary courtesy Tony Atkinson.
 
 
DANUBE II as ST EVAL at Falmouth. Photo A Duncan courtesy Tony Atkinson.
 
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TOM JAY ex Thames Steam Tug and Lighterage Co at Falmouth in 1983 working on the Penryn Marina. Photo Tony Atkinson.
 
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SUN XXIV  at North Woolwich Pier. Photo Chris French

I used to work on the 24,from about 1964 to 1967. They were the most enjoyable years. You can see Woolwich ferry in the rear of the photograph.

Chris French 

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C328 
 
Nolly Harvey & Alan Pearson on Richard Bransons yacht, at the Royal Terrace pier. Photo Nolly Harvey
 
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Three amazing old photo's kindly sent to the site by Steve Baxter. Steve's great grandfather was Captain Frank Baxter, skipper of the paddle tug Nelson when she unfortunately caught fire off Canal Basin, Gravesend in 1863. Frank Baxter was also to become skipper of Haslip's paddle tug Middlesex and during his career carried out several valuable salvages.
 
 
 
Paddle tug NELSON. Photo © courtesy Steve Baxter.
 
 
Captain Frank Baxter, Master of the paddle tugs NELSON and MIDDLESEX. Photo © courtesy Steve Baxter.
 
 
Captain Frank Baxter and his crew, probably taken aboard PT NELSON. Photo © courtesy Steve Baxter.
 
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Amazingly some more items concerning Empire Wold have been sent to me. These have very kindly been provided by Peter Draper, his great uncle was Henry 'Harry' William Draper, acting Master of Empire Wold when he and the rest of the crew were lost in 1944. RIP.
 
 
Henry 'Harry' William Draper, acting Master, Empire Wold. Photo courtesy Peter Draper.
 
 
Courtesy Peter Draper
 
 
Courtesy Peter Draper
 
 
Courtesy Peter Draper.
 
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A cutting from Kent Messenger April 19th 1941 kindly provided by Kevin Haydon. Wartime regulations have meant that the vessels name and the location of the incident have had to be omitted. It does of course refer to the horrific 'Lunula Incident' and the fate that befell the crew of the tug Persia  [ex Dongara] at Thames Haven on 9th April 1941.
 
 
A water colour painting of the Dongara in happier times, carried out by one of her crew. Photo courtesy K Haydon
 
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17-12-2019
Another page GALLERY has been added. This will contain photos of general interest that do not appear elsewhere on the site.
 
Photos that were on this page for a long while have NOT been deleted, but now appear elsewhere on the site. Most will have gone to either CREW GALLERY, TOWS GALLERY or GALLERY. It became necessary for me to carry out one of my periodic tidy ups of the site to ensure its future operation. Many thanks for the continued support of all visitors.





 
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