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TSS Manx Maid (ex Caesarea)


Builders: Cammell Laird & Co Ltd 1910

Propulsion type: 3 Steam Turbines

Owners: London & South West Railway, Southern Railway, Isle of Man Steam Packet Co Ltd

Service dates: 1910 - 1950

Tonnage: Gross 1512

Comments:

The Caesarea was built for Channel Islands service from Southampton for the London & South Western Railway. She was amalgamated into the joint fleet operated by the Southern Railway on 1 January 1923 and later that year she struck some rocks off St Helier and was towed to Southampton for repair. Whilst undergoing her survey she was purchased by the IOMSP. They completed the repairs at Birkenhead and converted her to oil burning. Licenced to carry 1474 passengers she continued without mishap until requisitioned in Sept 1938 during the Munich Crisis. She saw service in the Second World War two weeks after Dunkirk and rescued 3000 soldiers in one trip from Brest (twice her peacetime passenger certificate). She was later an auxilliary vessel for the Royal Air Force and was often seen on the Clyde in this guise. She was returned to her owners in 1945 although was laid up at Barrow until the 1946 season. She became the winter boat in early 1947 and undertook her final sailing on 26 August 1950. She returned to Barrow for breaking up in the November of the same year.

Thanks go to Cyril Perrier for additional information on this steamer.

For a picture of Capt. P B Cowley on her bridge, please click here.


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