New Zealand Coastal Shipping  


How it used to be. Onehunga Wharf 25/26 October 1966
Northern SS Company's Hotunui berthed outside Maranui at the very end of the wharf. Abaft of them lie Onehunga and Tawanui, Holm Shipping's Holmlea, and Anchor Shipping's Towai nearest the camera.

This site is dedicated to New Zealand coastal shipping in its final few years of conventional operation. By "conventional" I mean small ships that looked like ships, had things called masts and derricks, put cargo in holds instead of metal boxes, had names that were interesting or followed a theme, unlike some of the names that occur today which tend to be little more than advertising billboards.

Growing up in Timaru, I was able to watch many of these ships come and go about their business. I recall watching Holmdale load there in June 1974, little knowing that it was to be her last visit and the last time that general cargo was loaded onto a traditional New Zealand coaster at Timaru. There was no fanfare, no reading of speeches, she just quietly sailed away.....

I trust you will enjoy your visit and reading about the Companies, the ships and the services that used to exist on the New Zealand coast. For old hands, it may even bring back some memories.

May I thank here the following people & organizations who have been able to help with photos and/or information.
Iain Lovie, Stephen Reed, Dave Edge, Capt. Michael Pryce, Nick Tolerton, Don Armitage, Darren Ball, Emmanuel Makarios, Graham Ferguson, Jeremy Ruane, NZ Ship & Marine Society, Lyttelton Port Company, Kaiapoi Library (all New Zealand), Leo Johannes, Bert Romeling (Netherlands), Jan de Jonge (Australia), Fraser Darrah, Paul Knight, Paul Strathdee (United Kingdom).


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