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Sunday, 13 December 2009

A Wee bit of History.





The official Henry Robb Shipyard opened up at the end of World War I around 1918.
The yard was closed down by the then Thatcher Government, in there wisdom and wound up around 1984.
This brought to an end over 660 years of Shipbuilding excellence in Leith.
There seems to be a fair amount of information on most of the other Shipyards around at the time in Scotland but as I said before not to much about Henry Robb in Leith, this is a small attempt to rectify this situation just a little bit, so if some of this is wrong or even made up then you will just have to bear with me until we get it correct.
The Company was founded by Henry Robb, a former yard manager for Ramage & Ferguson in 1918.
The Company then expanded through acquisition buying berths fromHawthorns in 1924, the business of Crane & Somerville in 1926 and the yards of Ramage & Ferguson in 1934. The site became known as Victoria Shipyard.
The Company closed its Arbroath and Clyde operations during the 1920's and focused its activities on Leith.
During World War II, Robbs built a large number of naval warships for the Royal Navy, including preparing the designs and building the prototype of the Basset-class anti-submarine /minesweeping trawler.
On 26 February 1940 King George VI and Queen Elizabeth toured the shipyard.
In 1968, Robbs purchased, and amalgamated with, the Caledon Shipbuilding and Engineering Company of Dundee, forming Robb Caledon Shipbuilding. In 1977, under the provisions of the Aircraft and Shipbuilding Industries Act 1977, Robb Caledon was nationalised as part of British Shipbuilders. The Caledon yard in Dundee closed in 1981; Robb's yard in Leith survived two more years, closing in 1983. The land once occupied by Robb's shipyard is now the Ocean Terminal shopping centre, and home to the Royal Yacht Britannia.

Launch of the M.V.Kiatoa for the Union Steamship Co of New Zealand.
Yard No 443

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