ss BERRIMA

ss BERRIMA
built by Caird & Company Greenock,
Yard No 325
Engines by Shipbuilders
Port of Registry: Greenock
Propulsion: Two four cylinder quadruple expansion steam engines, 9000ihp, twin screws, 14 knots
Launched: Saturday, 20/09/1913
Built: 1913
Ship Type: Passenger Liner
Ship's Role: UK/Australia emigrant service via the Cape of Good Hope (Branch Line)
Tonnage: 11137 gross; 7037 net; 13730 dwt
Length: 500ft 2in
Breadth: 62ft 3in
Owner History:
Peninsular & Oriental Steam Navigation Company
Status: Sold for Scrapping - 16/07/1930
Web site: http://www.clydesite.co.uk/clydebuilt/warships/vessel.asp?id=11748
Remarks:
20/09/1913: Launched.
05/12/1913: Delivered. Passenger capacity 350 permanent 3rd class, 250 temporary 3rd class. She was the fourth of the five prewar ĎBí class vessels ordered for what had been Lundís Blue Anchor Line emigrant service, bought by P&O in 1910. She and her sisters were a distinct advance in service and facilities over Lundís vessels, though they were scarcely handsome. She cost £209,456.
12/1913: Maiden voyage London/Cape Town/Adelaide/Melbourne/Sydney.
08/1914: Taken up in Australia as an armed merchant cruiser.
10/1914: Became a troop transport.
18/02/1917: Struck by a torpedo or mine when 50 miles W of Portland Bill, with the loss of four lives. The majority of the crew were evacuated in the lifeboats and were picked up by the destroyer HMS FORESTER. A line was subsequently connected to the tug PILOT, and BERRIMA was towed into Portland Harbour the next day. In the absence of a dry dock she was repaired while still afloat with a 42 ton wooden patch built in three sections on the quayside, after which she was requisitioned by the Shipping Controller for the Atlantic stores and munitions ferry.
01/02/1920: Homeward bound with 275 passengers when she was stranded off Margate a little after 6pm, due to an error of judgement by the pilot, corrected too late by her Commander.
02/02/1920: Refloated at about 10.25pm by HM tug FIRM and the merchant tugs LADY BRASSEY, LADY DUNCAN, SCOTIA and JAVA.
24/03/1920: One sailing on the British India SNCo berth from London to Suez, Colombo and Brisbane, after which she returned to the Branch Line.
1927: 27 of her fireman arrested in London for pilferage.
26/04/1929: Last sailing to Australia before the Cape route was abandoned.
16/07/1930: Sold for £29,000 to Asakichi Kitagawa, Japan for demolition at Osaka.

Previous updates by Paul Strathdee and Bruce Biddulph, with thanks to Dr Ian Buxton.
Previous update by John Newth
Photo supplied by J Ward McQuaid
Photo supplied by J Ward McQuaid
Previous update by George Robinson

Last updated: by Stuart Cameron from the original records by Stuart Cameron




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