Articles, Maritime History

Shipping in Dublin Port

Shipping in Dublin Port 1939-1945
by Walter Kennedy

160 Pages HardBack £15 Sterling. The Petland Press, Bishop Auckland, Durham, England.

This is an interesting book about a time in our history when this island was all but strangled by lack of shipping. It is the era of the ‘rust bucket’ vessels of Irish Shipping Ltd, Palgrave Murphy and Wexford Steamships that kept the country supplied. It is the list of some 2,000 ships that arrived in Dublin during the war years, entered in diaries kept by the author at the time.

However it is very odd that out of 14 references given only one is Irish, the Long Watch by Frank Forde. The author it also seems is most ignorant about Irish merchant ships. In Page 7 he refers to the Irish Naval Service vessel Muirchu and MTBMI. The Naval Service was not formed until 1946; the correct title then should be the Marine and Coast Watching Service.

Also Page 32 – The General McHardy was anything but a trawler type ship – she was owned by the Dept. of Defence and plied between Cobh, Spike Island and Haulbowline. The Photo on Page 112 is not Great Britain Quay but the dry-dock lead-in jetty at Afexandra Basin. The photo caption under the Irish Poplar, surprising, makes no reference to the fact that the funnel is painted in the post-war colours of the Company.

I am somewhat surprised that no attempt was made to update his wartime information from the Dublin Port & Docks Board records, which the late Mr. Gerry Daly would have put at his disposal.

Pat Sweeney