Author Topic: Empress of Australia  (Read 1949 times)

Offline ChrisEdwardsUSA

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Empress of Australia
« on: Wednesday 25 October 17 18:25 BST (UK) »
I have a menu card for a Victory Day Dinner on the Empress of Australia (June 8th 1946). This was signed by my late grandfather (John Bithell Edwards), & what I assume were 11 of his colleagues.

My assumption is that he was a crew member aboard the liner, that was operating as a troop ship. (he would have been early 50's, so unlikely to be a returning soldier?)

Does anyone know if crew lists exist online?, I would love to find out more about this time in his life.
Edwards. Hadlington. Artell. Rogers. Harbage

Offline chempat

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Re: Empress of Australia
« Reply #1 on: Wednesday 25 October 17 22:54 BST (UK) »
Just a little bit of background about her, from wikipedia:

Post-war service[edit]
After World War II Empress of Australia worked worldwide as a troop ship, including carrying military personnel to Pusan during the Korean War.
In 1946 while anchoring off Liverpool her anchor tangled with that of a cargo liner Debrett; the two ships collided and seven tugs were needed to separate them. In December of that year, she was re-fitted for peace time trooping, offering more comfortable accommodations for the troops; however the Empress was never repainted and remained in the wartime grey colour scheme.
Notably, in 1947, she ferried home the last British soldiers away from Bombay, just after they symbolically passed through the Gateway of India following Indian independence. With this final act, over two centuries of British imperial rule in India was brought to an end.

Offline seaweed

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Re: Empress of Australia
« Reply #2 on: Saturday 28 October 17 18:24 BST (UK) »
As far as I am aware the 1946 Crew Agreements of EMPRESS OF AUSTRALIA official number 145300 are not available on line.
Her incoming Passenger lists are available from "Ancestry". May be worth checking these out first.
Her 1946 Crew Agreements are in the British National Archive at Kew, London.
http://discovery.nationalarchives.gov.uk/details/r/C11080005
You would need to visit or get someone to look for you.
On 08/June/1946 EMPRESS OF AUSTRALIA was between Suez, sailed 05/June/1946 and COLUMBO, arrived 13/June/1946.
Could you give us your Grandfathers date and place of birth? I have found a WW2 MN medal listing for a  John Edwards born in 1883. Have also found some MN service records for the same man.
 
Dim ateb yn well nag ateb anghywir. Nid oes dim yn ddall fel rhai nad ydynt yn dymuno gweld


Offline chempat

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Re: Empress of Australia
« Reply #3 on: Sunday 29 October 17 07:20 GMT (UK) »
seaweed,

He is John Bithell Edwards according to the OP and in his early 50's in 1946, so this looks like his birth:
Births December quarter 1891 in Holywell
John Bithell Edwards.

He is in several trees on Ancestry.

Offline colette

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Re: Empress of Australia
« Reply #4 on: Friday 01 May 20 23:56 BST (UK) »
My Grandfather served on many ships he was on the Empress Of Australia taking troops out of India..
here are his dates..

January 9th 1947 to March 9th 1947.
March 24th 1947 to May 7th 1947.
May 23rd 1947 to June 15th 1947.
August 6th 1947 to August 29th 1947.
September 5th 1947 to September 28th 1947.
December 3rd 1947 to January 16th 1948. From this date Walter was now described as 'Ships cook' rather than 'Assistant cook'.
February 3rd 1948 to March 17th 1948.
April 2nd 1948 to April 27th 1948.
May 4th 1948 to May 28th 1948.
July 4th 1950 to July 30th 1950.
August 8th 1950 to September 3rd 1950.
September 30th 1950 to December 19th 1950. (November 1950 sailed to Pusan, Korea with troops)
December 28th(?) 1950 to January 23rd 1951.

The end came for this grand old lady after her 234th voyage, reaching Liverpool on April 29th 1952 for the final disembarking. About a week later, on May 8th she sailed to Rosyth scrap... he was on the Empress of Australia berthed in Bombay when the last British Regiment was leaving, they marched down to the Bombay Gate, with the band playing, ready to embark on the Empress of Australia.

Colette

Pratt, Benson, Haizelden, Ralston, Keller, Henshall, Wilson, Cook, Kilvert, Baylis, Lee.

Offline seaweed

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Re: Empress of Australia
« Reply #5 on: Saturday 02 May 20 13:21 BST (UK) »
The one question mark you have "December 28th(?) 1950 to January 23rd 1951."

EMPRESS OF AUSTRALIA arrived Liverpool 18/12/1950 and sailed 29/12/1950.
All the other dates seem correct.
This information is taken from the Movements of EMPRESS OF AUSTRALIA ref.  piece MT40/145 British National Archive. This document gives dates of arrival and departure of  all ports where she docked together with details of any repair and maintenance. If you would like a copy just contact me via PM.
Dim ateb yn well nag ateb anghywir. Nid oes dim yn ddall fel rhai nad ydynt yn dymuno gweld

Offline colette

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Re: Empress of Australia
« Reply #6 on: Friday 15 May 20 21:08 BST (UK) »
Hi Seaweed

They are taken from a web site my dad helped make they are taken from his Shipping Books the site was for Railway enthusiasts really as my dad was an Engine Driver but seen as though my Grandfather was on 60 odd ships in his career he added all his information too..

https://www.derbysulzers.com/birkenheadships.html

Colette
Pratt, Benson, Haizelden, Ralston, Keller, Henshall, Wilson, Cook, Kilvert, Baylis, Lee.

Offline chempat

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Re: Empress of Australia
« Reply #7 on: Saturday 16 May 20 08:16 BST (UK) »
ChrisEdwardsUSA does not appear to have used rootschat after that opening post, pity.

Offline Ex-Suffolks

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Re: Empress of Australia
« Reply #8 on: Friday 26 March 21 18:25 GMT (UK) »
Perhaps a very notable date for the Empress of Australia-6 February 1052. She docked home from Singapore on this day. I had been in the sick bay for the whole journey, boarded home following a shooting incident in Malaya with 1st Bn The Suffolk Regt. Sent home on sick leave, I was later walking down the main street in Cambridge when a passing man reminded me of the situation. Happy to be home, I was almost oblivious to the news. It was the day King George VI had died, and we now were to have a Queen. A day forever in my memory.