Memories, section 5 …                                        

Furness Bermuda Line and the Cunard Yanks ...

A number of Furness Bermuda Line crew were ex-Cunard and vice versa, particularly in the catering departments. 

We have been contacted by Richie Barton who runs the Cunard Yanks website at   Ritchie served on Queen of Bermuda until 1961 and has included a photograph of the Queen of Bermuda and Ocean Monarch dance at the Henry Hudson Hotel in 1955.  His life story is related at  —  go to Galleries of Lives Online and click on Richie Barton.

We are grateful to Ritchie for permission to reproduce his photograph from



Andy Willats remembers more friends …

Andy Willats sent us this photograph taken at a  Christmas party in the wardroom of Ocean Monarch.

Andy (far left),  then 4th Electrician, is shown with Jim Tindall, Chief Electrician and Terry Whittaker, 3rd Electrician.

Photograph: Collection of Andy Willats  - probably taken by the Ship’s Photographer, Howard Soares.

Tony Lee  -  the one who got away …

John (Tony) Lee (right) has contacted the website — he was an apprentice on board Queen of Bermuda during her Tyne re-fit in 1958.  He chose a life in other Furness Withy ships rather than sail on the next commission as Jnr 3rd Officer.  He served the re-fit with John Lawn (see the Williams’ wedding photograph in Memories 2)  and remembers living the high life in passenger staterooms during the re-fit.

Tony obtained his Master’s ticket in 1960 and held various posts ashore, including Stevedore Superintendent in Birkenhead.  He is now retired and lives in Dumfries.


Tony as Second Officer on Furness Withy’s ‘Mystic’ (left) and today (below).

Sarah Millée remembers her step-father, Captain Ian Saunders …

We have been contacted by Sarah Millée (left), the step-daughter of Captain Ian Saunders (right).

Sarah tells us, “I recently carried out some research on my step-father.  He was very dear to me and was married to my mother for 27 years.

I was delighted to come across your website and see the photographs of him and his fellow officers, many of whom I recognised.”



“In particular, I remember David Gillmon, who appears on your website. He was coxswain of the ceremonial ship’s launch, taking my parents to their wedding reception on 27 June 1966 from their wedding at St Andrews’s Presbyterian Church in Paget.  Although I was only a little girl in the 1960s,  I wonder if he remembers me?”


Of the event, David recalls “one of my memories is being given the honour to cox the lifeboat that carried Staff Captain Ian Saunders and his bride across Hamilton harbour to their reception.”




Sarah continues, “I used to have lunch on board Queen of Bermuda when she docked in Bermuda with my mother and Captain Saunders before they were married which was always a very special occasion.


In December 1966, we took the last voyage from Bermuda to Scotland where Queen of Bermuda was destined to be scrapped.  I was too young to realise just what a sad occasion that was.


After my step-father took the ship to Faslane, we spent a little time in Scotland with his folks in Aberdeen, which was a huge culture shock coming from sunny Bermuda, as you can imagine!


My parents found a lovely house in Camberley in 1967, after months of house hunting, and they lived in it for 25 years.  "Pa", as I called him, went t on to command  Andes, then Northern Star.  My mother and I accompanied him on three trips.“

“A few years later he got a very lucky break to come ashore because he was elected an Elder Brother of Trinity House (left). He loved it and stayed until he retired. 


In 1992, my parents retired to my mother's family house in Bermuda. Sadly, she died the following year - while I was expecting her grandchild whom she never got to meet - and Pa died in 2001, both from colon cancer.”


Captain Saunders when Staff Captain of Ocean Monarch (above) and  with Sarah in 1965 (below)

Ian Saunders at his desk in Trinity House

In the photograph above, David is seen standing in the stern, with Captain and Mrs Lois Saunders seated.

On the right, Captain and Mrs Saunders arrive at the reception at her brother’s house, ‘The Terraces’ in Point Shares.  If you can identify the piper, please contact the webmaster.

Photographs: collection of Mrs Sarah Millée


Sarah would love to hear from anyone who served with her step-father on Furness Bermuda Line – please contact the webmaster for her email address.

Ian and Lois Saunders meeting the Duke of Edinburgh

We are grateful to Vikki Gilson, Public Relations Manager for The Corporation of Trinity House of Deptford Strond, Tower Hill, London for the following:

“Ian Saunders was sworn in as a Younger Brother in 1968 and, at the time of his swearing in, he was a Master with Furness Ship Management Limited.

He became an Elder Brother on 2 January 1973.”

Photographs: Trinity House archives

Martin Greenwood remembers …

 Engine-room telegraph of Queen of Bermuda at ‘stop engines’

Jeff Anderson (left) and Dave Kemp, Snr Cadet

Ocean Monarch (above) in Cammell Laird, Birkenhead (left) and at anchor off Sint Maarten, DWI (right)

Martin Greenwood, a former cadet (left) at the 2009 Grand Reunion and, in 1965, on board Ocean Monarch in New York (right). 

Photographs: Martin Greenwood

Scroll down for more ...

For Memories, section 1, click here, section 2, click here, section 3, click here, section 4, click here, section 6, click here, section 7, click here, section 8, click here, section 9, click here, section 10, click here and section 11, click here.

For Memories, section 1, click here, section 2, click here, section 3, click here, section 4, click here, section 6, click here, section 7, click here, section 8, click here, section 9, click here, section 10, click here and section 11, click here.