Wednesday, April 13, 2011

the Northern Star on her maiden voyage, 1962

Arrival in Fremantle, Western Australia
Berthed in Wellington NZ
The Shaw Savill line ship Northern Star was built as a sister for the successful Southern Cross. As we have noted before, sister vessels are not necessarily identical and Northern Star incorporated several changes mainly to dimensions. Both vessels had similar accommodation layouts. There were a large open sports deck and sun deck with outdoor pool. The lounge deck offered a forward lounge, writing room, library, smoking room, two-deck cinema lounge and a tavern. There were forward and aft restaurants and a proper wrap around promenade deck. Intended for the still lucrative migrant trade to the Southern Hemisphere, the ship sailed eastbound, while Southern Cross sailed westbound, each ship visiting the same ports and completing four voyages per year.  

Air travel steadily replaced intercontinental sea voyages and Southern Cross was sold to a Greek line in 1973. Northern Star was reportedly plagued with mechanical problems, which must have made her difficult to sell, as she was sent to the shipbreakers the following year. 

For many more liner scenes like these, see the book New Zealand Maritime Images: the golden years.

Built: 1962 by Vickers-Armstrong, Newcastle
Propulsion: Steam turbines twin screw
Gross register tons: 24,731 
Length: 650 ft
Beam: 83 ft 
Draft: 26 ft  
Speed: 20 knots
Passengers: 1,437

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I was on this ship in December/January 1968 when rumours abounded on board that it was jinxed which didn't make me feel too good. On leaving Tahiti the crew failed to sail between the buoys marking the reef and exit to the open sea. The bow went up on the reef and took several hours to be "tugged" off and back to the key where spent another three days whilst they repaired a massive hole with concrete !! I have it on film somewhere. No wonder they couldn't sell her.