I see that P&O Cruises [about which there is a not-very-accurate Wikipedia page here: not very accurate, I mean, about the history of the P&O Line] will seek public suggestions for a name for its latest vessel, which they call “the nation’s ship”:
P&O has also previously run a similar exercise, coming up with the stately Britannia for a ship that launched last year. The company hopes for something similarly dignified and patriotic this time round […].
I do hope there will be a concerted campaign to have it named Hibernia, to recognise that
- the single most important person in the formation of the P&O Line, Richard Bourne, was Irish
- four of the eight original directors were Irish (and one was Spanish)
- 83% of the company’s original capital of £304,600 in ships, exchanged for paid-up shares, was Irish owned.
Of course, as this great Irish company expanded, it took on more British shareholders and directors, training them no doubt in how to run scheduled steam shipping services, but it is about time that the Irish role was acknowledged.
See Freda Harcourt “Charles Wye Williams and Irish steam shipping 1820–1850” in The Journal of Transport History Third Series Volume 13 Number 2 September 1992, Manchester University Press, and Freda Harcourt Flagships of Imperialism: the P&O Company and the politics of empire from its origins to 1867 Manchester University Press 2006 [ebook now also available].
Posted in Charles Wye Williams, Economic activities, Engineering and construction, Historical matters, Industrial heritage, Ireland, Modern matters, Operations, Passenger traffic, People, Sea, Sources, Steamers, Tourism
Tagged Charles Wye Williams, Hibernia, P&O, Richard Bourne
There was a proposal in the 1830s for a ship canal along the coast, outside the railway embankment, from Dublin to the asylum harbour at Kingstown. A preliminary report was provided by William Cubitt after the House of Commons Select Committee on the Dublin and Kingstown Ship Canal had reported in July 1833.
Henry E Flynn was opposed to the idea and, in his A Glance at the Question of a Ship Canal connecting the asylum harbour at Kingstown with the river Anne Liffey at Dublin &c &c &c [George Folds, Dublin 1834], dedicated to Daniel O’Connell, he wrote eloquently of the drawbacks of the proposal, which included this:
Be it remembered, that the whole coast from Ringsend to Merrion is the bathing ground for the less affluent classes of the Citizens; and hundreds get their bread by attending on and bathing the females who frequent it.
And are the patriotic Would-be’s who support a Ship Canal equally reckless of the health, the morality, and the existence of those persons? Would they have no objection to expose their mothers, wives, sisters and daughters to the immediate wanton gaze, the scoffs, the jeers, the immodest jest, the filthy exposure and indecent exhibitions which the most abandoned race of men [ie sailors] could find in their dissolute minds to perpetrate in their view, and within their hearing? And yet, all this must be the consequence of a Ship Canal in the immediate vicinity of the female baths and bathing ground along the line.
Happily, the canal was never built.
Posted in Ashore, Built heritage, Canals, Charles Wye Williams, Drainage, Economic activities, Engineering and construction, Extant waterways, Industrial heritage, Ireland, Non-waterway, Operations, People, Politics, Rail, Safety, Sea, Shannon, Sources, Steamers, The cattle trade, The fishing trade, Tourism, Water sports activities, waterways, Waterways management, Weather
Tagged cattle, Daniel O'Connell, Grand Canal Dock, Henry E Flynn, Liffey, North Wall, Richard Bourne, strand, William Cubitt, women