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New Zealand Shipping On - Line Comments
This page was last updated on Wednesday, 14 September 2011 11:54:14 PM

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Welcome: Because of the amount of comments, support and input from members of the public having the total archive of comments on one page is now impractical. We have now separated the comments by year. 
If this is your first visit to the site I strongly recommend that you start from the beginning as there are some great stories and links.

Comments for the year 1999 Email / Date
I was searching for information regarding ships I had formerly served on, when I came across this site. If you have some knowledge of the following vessel's I would appreciate it. I served on the M/V Orari for one voyage, and two voyages on the M/V Suffolk between April 1953 until July 1954. I believe that the 'Orari' was torpedoed twice in the second world war. Orari tonnage was 6235.83 and the Suffolk tonnage was 6565.59 Official number of the 'Orari' was 162906 and 'Suffolk's' number was 167330. Hope this is of some use. From Gordon Rew.


My grandfather traveled on the Hororata in 1917 to England. He was in the AIF 41st Battalion at the time.
My wife's great grandfather arrived in Hobart, Australia on the 3rd September 1888 aboard the Kaikoura and I found a great account of the voyage in the Hobart Mercury dated 4th September 1888. I have a picture of this ship but would love to find a picture of the IONIC, another New Zealand Shipping Company vessel.


I believe my grandmother emigrated on the Rimutaka to Wellington and then proceeded on the same ship to Auckland in late 1912. Don't have any further information. Would like to see photographs or drawings. The D.M. Little collection at the State Library of Victoria, Australia, has official paintings of ships from very early days - 1840s onwards I believe. Many of these ships would have also gone to New Zealand.


I sailed as an Engineer with New Zealand Shipping Company from 1956 to 1961. NZSC was then part of the PandO Group. There are two interest groups, one based in New Zealand and one in UK for people who have been associated with NZSC. I can obtain contact details if anyone requires them.
The NZSCo interest contact organisations are:
New Zealand Shipping Company Association Inc PO.Box 4061 Auckland 1 New Zealand..& the Durham Association Honorary Secretary
Editors footnote:
Lord Vestey who owned the Weddell supermarket chain in the UK, was the owner of NZSC up until 1990.
Vestey used his substantial land holdings in Australia, NZ, Argentina in conjunction with his meat companies to move his frozen meat products to the UK.. In Australia his meat companies were C.Q.M.E in Rockhampton and N.Q.M.E in Townsville and in NZ it was Westfield ( Auckland ) Tammona ( Hawkes Bay).
Vestey shipping portfolio at the time contained Blue Star & A.C.T.A shipping line.
Unfortunately in the 1980's Vestey had moved into real estate development and the high land values saw him borrow against these heady property values. The stock market crash on October 14th 1988, saw the Vestey group liquidate their land and meat works in Australia ( meat works now owned by Packer and his company Consolidated Meat Holdings ) and NZ, ( now owned by A.F.F.C.O, Auckland Farmers Freezing Co-operative ) it was in 1990 that the Vestey group sold NZ Line & Blue Star to P&O, the only NZ Line vessel operating at time of sale was the NZ Mariner, which travelled between Sydney, Melbourne, Auckland, Wellington, Lyttelton.
The name NZSC went through many incarnations with the late Prime Minister of NZ Mr Norm Kirk who died in office (1967) the principle driving force for creating a New Zealand owned shipping company ( Shipping Corporation of New Zealand later on it became New Zealand Shipping Corporation or short for NZSC under Vestey ) Norm Kirk's plan was to increase the value added component of NZ primary products " a man a head of his time " as witnessed by the Japanese " Sogo Shosu " concept of vertical integrated business and Vestey himself. There were two vessels put in service, the first vessel was the Meadowbank, ( the second vessel, the name escapes me ) some sources said they were procured from Bank & Saville line whilst others have said the Bank Line. ( we would be interested to know ) This government sponsored idea was plagued with confrontationally disputes, mores the pity. It was Vestey who brought the remnants of SCNZ and changed the name to NZSC and then to NZ Line
The current New Zealand Shipping Co was formed on 9th January 1988 to cement the relationship between Australia and New Zealand under the C.E.R ( Closer Economic Relations ) agreement signed off by Prime Ministers Muldoon ( NZ) & Frazer (Australia) to facilitate a door to door (Free Into Store) shipping service. Brisbane was chosen as the base of operations (or HUB) because of its last port status. Southern ports were so often riddled with disputes that it made it unbearable for overseas customers to buy from Australia. On the other hand Brisbane offered hope to shippers and importers alike, when once a vessel sailed Brisbane, overseas customers had a fixed arrival time to plan their import clearances accordingly and therefore enhance Brisbane's reputation as a regular supplier of goods and services.  
I note your editor's footnote to my E Mail
you appear to be confusing NZ Shipping Corporation and NZ Shipping Company.
NZ Shipping Company together with Federal Line was part of the PandO Group which served NZ and occasionally Australia. They disappeared as separate entities in the early 1970s when PandO put their logo on all these vessels. I served as an Engineer Cadet with NZ Shipping Company and my first interview was at the PandO offices in Leadenhall Street London.
NZ Shipping Corporation was a separate organisation which had no connection with the previous NZ Shipping Company. After the old NZSC and Federal ships were painted in PandO colours and adorned with the PandO logo, these ships were used in PandO services calling at the Middle East.
I subsequently met some of the crews when these ships called at the Gulf Ports. Many of them had spent their careers sailing between UK and NZ and found it difficult to adjust to the totally different environment of the Middle East. They missed NZ !
The Vestey family owned the Blue Star Line. They also owned the "Dewhurst the Butchers" chain which was country wide in UK. Vesteys were not connected to the original NZSC.
The Federal Line ships were named after English counties (Suffolk, Norfolk, Durham, Sussex etc). The designs of the vessels were identical to those of NZSC as were the hull colours. The only difference was the house flag insignia on the funnel. The NZSC and Federal Line operated complementary services between UK and NZ.
I hope you find this information useful.
Len Chapman
Editors Note:
Excellent Stuff anybody wishing to share please feel welcome to email
I'd be interested in any information (and perhaps a photo?) of the SS Remuera - Built 1911 for the New Zealand Shipping Co. and torpedoed 26 August 1940 off Peterhead, Scotland.Roger Mathison:   Peterhead, Scotland
7/11/ 99
My father-in-law Geoffrey Andrews was a crew member of the SS Stafford between August 1949 and March 1950. He is currently making a 5 foot fibre glass model of the Stafford and would like help to confirm his memory of her colour scheme particularly the funnel. If you can help, please contact him in the UK at 'The Bungalow, 1 Vine Close, West Drayton, Middlesex, UB7 9HH, United Kingdom'. or e-mail me and I will pass the details on to him. Thanks in advance.  Jon Say


Have you any information on the "Wairoa" that first sailed to NZ in 1876. Information from the Canterbury Museum states that it arrived on its maiden voyage from East India Dock to Lyttelton. My Great Grandfather (William Wilson) was a passenger on it.
Hi Chaps, I worked for the NZSCo and Federal back in the 1950's and 60's. Great time, and enjoyed every minute of it !
Sailed on the 'Rakaia' and many other ships as a Senior Radio Officer back then. Looking to communicate with other chaps who might have sailed with the company about that time. Give us a buz if you remember us. 
Stuart Rae


I am researching Steamer TURAKINA built 1923 (refrigerated cargo ship) sunk by German ORION 1940. My father was a master mariner and I understand that freighters sometimes carried from 1 to 7 passengers, particularly on the run between Australia and New Zealand. Did the TURAKINA?
Also: I found the following ship and ask if the info is correct.
TURAKINA 1902 Twin Screws NZ Shipping Co Plowman
Built 1901 Newcastle, 8,073 tons for UK-NZ trade. 60 1st, 50 2nd and 80 3rd class passengers. Lost by U-boat torpedo 120 miles off Scilly Is 13/8/17
TURAKINA 1882 Lyttelton 1189 tons immigrant ship to NZ
TURAKINA X CITY OF PERTH which superseded WAIMATE (are these the same sailing ship - and what was she (schooner?) Are all these TURAKINAs "sister" ships?


My father's grandfather was the commander of SS AUPOURI (built Glasgow) for Northern Steam Ship Company of Auckland, on her maiden voyage (almost 12 weeks) to New Zealand. Either he, or his father commanded the first steam-sailer to NZ as I understand. What is the name of this ship and, what year? Elizabeth



If you have knowledge about the Old New Zealand Shipping Company and would like to share
please proceed to the On-Line feed back form.

Jeffrey Shaw, Managing Director, New Zealand Shipping.