Help keep the site going

Sunday, 27 February 2011

Update-Naval Ships

Latest update on the are some photographs in the Naval Ships built in Leith page, showing some of the many non warships built in the yard.Just click on the highlighted words to be taken right there.
Also some amazing pictures of a real tough little Mississippi Tugboat.

Wednesday, 23 February 2011


The BBC Video of the story of the SCOT II now playing.

Sunday, 20 February 2011

Update to Royal Navy Ships

Recent update on the Leith shipyards website, at the Royal Navy Ships page.
Loch Class Outline

Royal Navy, The Royal Navy, The
Since 1900, the Royal Navy has seen vast operational changes. This book tells the story, not just of victory and defeat, but also of how the Navy has adjusted to a century of rapid technological and social change. The extensive reforms made by Admiral Fisher at the dawn of the twentieth century saw the navy's nineteenth-century wooden fleet replaced with the latest modern technology - battleships (including the iconic dreadnoughts), aircraft carriers and submarines. In World War I and World War II, the navy played a central role, with unrestricted submarine warfare and supply blockades becoming an integral part of combat. However it was the development of nuclear and missile technology during the Cold War era which drastically changed the face of naval warfare - today the navy can launch sea-based strikes across thousands of miles to reach targets deep inland. This book places the wars and battles fought by the navy - from Jutland to the Falklands - within a wider context, looking at political, economic, social and cultural issues, as well as providing a thorough operational history.

Saturday, 19 February 2011


Recent update to the history of the New Zealand Navy ship MOA can be found on the Leith Shipyards website. (Just click on the highlighted name MOA)
HMNZS MOA (RNZN Museum Photo)

The fight goes on

During the winter of 1983 the fight to try and keep shipbuilding in Leith continued, and in particular I remember one trip to London to hand in a petition to the then Prime Minister M.Thatcher, and it was surely a surprise on us getting to No 10 Downing Street to be told that the incumbent Prime Minister had, to leave the country that weekend.

We met with the then Trade minister (who was also Scotland minister at the time) and what a waste of space he turned out to be.

All typical yes’s and agreements (so no arguments of course) and you just left this type of meeting with a bad taste in the mouth.

As time was going on it was starting to become clearer that this was a battle that we at the worker level just could not win. If shipbuilding was to continue at the Leith Shipyards of Henry Robb then it was ship orders and not talks that would be conclusive and save the jobs, but we could see no concrete orders in the pipeline and still the management continued with there stance that the 2 ships being outfitted had to be finished to stand any chance of securing further orders.

Of course the men also knew that as soon as the ships were finished off then there was absolutely no bargaining position left.

Tuesday, 15 February 2011


Happy to say that no less than the BBC is featuring a news story on the old ice breaking tug SCOT II,
built in the Leith Shipyards of Henry Robb Shipbuilders Ltd, in 1931 as Ship No 184.
You can see the story of SCOT II here or read more about it on

Saturday, 12 February 2011

Favourite ROBB SHIPS-3

(Photograph is courtesy of the Plymouth RFA Assocciation)
The following completes the list of favourite Robb ships compiled while doing the research and actually working on some of the ships.

While any list is purely subjective this is my one and will show my top 30 Robb built Ships, with the final  10 shown below.

If you click on the ships name it will take you to more on the ships at the website. (Remember this website is ongoing)

Should you have a favourite list or wish to add to this existing list then send it in to the blog or the new website at

21. HMRT BUSTLER Ocean Rescue Tug

22. HMS DERG River Class Frigate (In Tokyo Bay at Jap Surrender)

23. M.V.POOLTA (Last of the U.S.S.Co ships for New Zealand)

24. MSC ROVER (last of the Manchester ship canal Tugs)

25. HMS LOCH KATRINE (New Zealand Navy ship ROTOITI)

26. M.V.ARCADIAN (Ellerman Wilson Line Cargo Ship)

27. HMS CARDIGAN BAY Frigate of the Bay Class

28. WESTMERE (First ship built)

29. HMS BASSET (First in the Dog Class armed trawlers)

30. M.V.LIGAR BAY (Cement ship for New Zealand)

SCOT II Publicity

Well it seems like the restoration of the old ice breaker tug SCOT II is beginning to gather some well deserved publicity and a television program on no less a station as the BBC is going to be featuring a story on her.

The story will go out on the television this Tuesday evening 15th of Febuary at 18:00 GMT and is being done by the news program BBC Reporting Scotland.

We believe it will also be featured on there website at

As ever if you feel that you would like to contribute anything to the restoration of this fine old vessel, then please get in touch.
You can also find out more about her at Scot II Restoration Project