This website is for ships’ crew of the FBL— more than 40 years on.

Furness Bermuda Line: ships’ crew reunited

May 2009, MSWMS near Gatwick

More than 40 years on, more than 40 former crew — plus their partners and relatives —joined the FBL reunion in southern England on Saturday 16 May.

For many, it was an emotional event — shared memories and memorabilia from the golden days of Furness Bermuda Line were captured on film and in pictures, some of which are reproduced below.

For a full record of the official photographs taken by Simon Mitchell, with an option to purchase copies, visit his website at — click on enter site/portraits.

Thanks and thoughts about the event have already been received from former crew  -  their comments, plus a record of the reunion, will appear on this website later.  In the meantime, further photos and text can be sent to the webmaster.


Furness Bermuda Line crew reunited, with their partners and relatives.  The bearer of the red duster is John Meadowcroft of the MSWMS.

Fred Burney, left, was a bellboy on Monarch of Bermuda in 1933 and, at the time of his attendance at the May 2009 reunion, was believed to be the oldest surviving crew member of Furness Bermuda Line.

Fred died in West Suffolk Hospital, Bury St Edmunds on 7 February 2012, aged 93. 


Of Fred, George Swaine says “It was our great pleasure and privilege to have him join us at the first Grand Reunion and to learn something of his interesting experiences, not only on board Monarch of Bermuda but also in the Mobile Naval Base Defence Organisation of the Royal Marines during the war. I am sure we can all learn something from men such as Fred and be certain that his family will have many happy memories.”

For more official and informal photographs, click here

For the memorabilia room, click here

For the dinner, click here

For video introductions and reminiscences of  former crew members, click here


For Grand Reunions, section 1, click here

Fred Lovell Burney

1918  - 2012

To hear Fred reminisce about his life, click here

Shirley Layne-Thompson, ran the gift shop on Queen of Bermuda and was the only female crew member at the reunion.

Fred (above) sharing memories with Ian Denton, former deck officer.