Save the Classic Liner Campaign founded in 1995
Please Note: Firefox and some other search engines are not suitable – Use “Internet Explorer” for this page to load perfectly!
Click the logo above to reach ssMaritime Main-Page & the “Feature of the Month”
Please Note: All ssMaritime and other related maritime/cruise sites are 100% non-commercial and privately owned. Be assured that I am NOT associated with any shipping or cruise companies or any travel/cruise agencies or any other organisations! Although the author has been in the passenger shipping industry since 1960, although is now retired but having completed around 700 Classic Liners and Cargo-Passengers Ships features I trust these will continue to provide classic ship enthusiasts the information the are seeking, but above all a great deal of pleasure! Reuben Goossens.
Please Note: Photographs on this page are either - taken by the author, from my private collection or as mentioned otherwise!
Having been in the passenger shipping industry for a good fifty-five years working from an office boy with a major shipping company, to later becoming an agent selling berths on ships to and from the UK and European ports, as well other ports on the way. In due course I managed a major Passenger Shipping Company and operated a successful Cruise Company in the 1970’s, it stands to reason that my love for classic and traditional passenger liners/cruise ships is obvious!
Personally it has been my good fortune to have
been directly involved in saving worthwhile passenger ships since 1990, but
have done so officially online since 1995! The best known is one I was so
closely involved with being the great Dutch Liner SS
Rotterdam, which is now a wonderful Hotel in
her homeport of
Of course there have been far too many other tragedies with some amazing ships lost, but there have also been some wonderful and sweet victories! But, this is not the time to sing praises for there are a few great classic liners still left that are worth saving and thus this page being continued as a means of keeping you and those who may be suitable buyers in the loop!
However, I must advise you; due to age and health issues, I am no longer involved in the saving of any of these wonderful ships, thus I now have to leave that job to others who I hope some are well trained and qualified individuals, organisations or owners who will be able to do this very difficult work. However, they will need your, my reader’s assistance! Therefore, this page is to keep you informed and reach-out to those who may be able to assist in a greater way, as I have experienced in the past. Therefore I sincerely ask you with all my heart to continue to assist them through every possible means to save some of these fine and much loved classic ex liners and yes, even some of the lesser-known yet fine ships.
There is the great SS
United States that has already been obtained by the “SS United States
Conservancy” who has done a wonderful job, but there has
been a few recent setbacks. But suddenly in February 2016 she has been saved,
and will be fully restored to her former glory. Read all the news below! Then
there is the rather tragic MV Queen Elizabeth 2 (QE2) that sadly remains in a dead ship state in
Thus, come aboard and support the very special work that is still being done by many good people and feel good knowing that you will have done something special, for doing something when assisting organisations or smaller dedicated groups in saving a part of maritime history that will last long into the future will be something that both your children, and their children will see what a real ship actually looks like, rather than those great big square boxlike floating apartment blocks (Condos), Fun Park Resort style cruise ships of today, that do not look like ships at all!
I sincerely thank all my wonderful readers and supporters for the many years that you have returned again and again, for amazingly the ssmaritime/savetheclassicliners pages have received well over 507.6 million readers and that is an amazing feat indeed! Thus, I wish to thank all my supporters for I am most touched by your kindnesses, especially for the countless emails of support over the recent years during my poor health!
Maritime Historian, Author, Cruise‘n’Ship Reviewer & Lecturer.
Commenced in the Passenger Shipping Industry in 1960.
Go Directly to Ships on this Page
2016: Crystal Cruises has signed a purchase option to restore the hip that has been the “Pride of America’ as well as being the fastest liner on the earth, the great S.S. United States, a historic ocean liner, which has been out of commission for 47 long years, and the hope to bring it back into service as a fully remodelled ship!
The option commits
“The prospect of revitalizing the S.S.
United States and re-establishing her as '
An Illustration of what the rebuilt
Provided by Crystal Cruises/Genting HKG
To transform the S.S. United States, which at one time, became the most powerful and fastest vessel in the world, setting a record, which still stands by the way, for the fastest Trans-Atlantic crossing in 1952, would cost between $700 million to $800 million, Mr. Rodriguez told the Times
The project is an interesting one for
Above & below: The superbly beautifully balanced S.S. United States seen as built and we see an illustration as
Will the great SS United States really ever become the “UNITED STATES by CRYSTAL CRUISES”?
Or will Genting do to her what they did to her and the SS Constitution last time and let them rot and go for scrap
It was only thanks to the United States Campaign that she was saved, for Genting would have had her broken up!
We just cannot trust the Malaysian Casino giant & shipping company who also owns NCL and now tragically Crystal
for everything they touch is a disaster! I will never trust Genting, no matter what, for their history is woeful!
I would be interested in your thoughts? Is this the ideal for the great BIG U? Remodelling her with balconies, streamlining her and turning her into a modern cruise ship, this it will be her hull, with a new superstructure so to say. The funnels will also be new, for her original funnels have deteriorated as far as I have been told, that they will be replaced with lightweight versions that will look like the original, but much shorter.
I have my thoughts on the new version of the BIG U, but I will keep it to myself for now, as I would appreciate to hear your thoughts! When writing, please advice IF I may print your comments and name, or just your initials?
Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org with your thoughts.
Below is the very first reply received on the very day I posted “The Big U News Item!”
“Hello Reuben, Yes, I was excited to hear that the Big U was to be retuned to service. However, I’m not too pleased with the illustrations of her new look. I’m sure you could put 800 in her existing space. But, it’s better than the alternative of scrapping. Ships were meant to sail the seas, so I think I would prefer this over sitting at some dock as a floating hotel, etc. All the best to you, CDK.”
There have been others, but I may not have permission to print them, etc, as I always ask for permission to do so. But I have now changed my request for comments to include permission to print, etc!
Below is another comment from Mr. Don Hall.
“Dear Reuben, It is both good news and
bad news. But in this case I believe that the good far outweighs the bad. While
we all would love for things to stay the same and yes, we deplore the floating
monstrosities that ships have become, the fact remains that times have changed
and in fact, someone has to pay for all of this. The modern passenger is not
even interested in an inside cabin, etc. I was fortunate enough to be on
the last Trans Atlantic crossing of the QE2 and I LOVED being below decks in a
small stateroom. But I can assure you and everyone else that I (we) are in the
minority. I have visited the SS United States in
Please Note: The following email from Mr. Sproet has been somewhat edited mostly for readability sake, however the email’s meaning and content has not been altered to what Mr. Sprout has originally sent me!
With reference to your article regarding the
The existing vessel, which now seems to be
still rotting away in the port of Philadelphia, remains a beautiful and a great
ship and she will always remain a “passenger ship” as as she should. The new owners are planning to rebuild her
into a cruise vessel after the modern style of today’s cruise ship
design, in other words she will look like a floating condominium, albeit a
little better looking than, for example the Harmony of the Sea. How long will
the rebuilding take, two years? Then the ship will sail for what, about 10
years (possibly) after which she may well be scrapped. Would it not be better
to use the “
In my opinion, Genting should keep the ship with its impressive lines just as she is. Rebuild her interior, but do not touch the exterior. Then she will be a pleasing sight in all the ports she will visit and reveal how once ships looked like.
With kind regards, Cornelis Sproet.
I wish to thank those who have contributed!
Maritime Historian, Author & Lecturer.
Commenced in Passenger Shipping in 1960.
Visit the SS United States Conservancy
And their NEWS PAGE
Above we see the without a Doubt the Greatest American Trans-Atlantic Liner ever built - NOW Let US SAVE HER!
Dear friends, it is vital to understand that the SS United States is without doubt one of the world’s greatest marine achievements that was brought about by the wonderful, William Francis Gibbs who was the brainchild behind the great SS United States an American liner like no ever other her the day. The end result was pure perfection a grand ship with the most sublime proportions, with her massive and impressive funnels to say the least, their grandeur would announce that “the SS United States has arrived!”
The ships builder’s plate taken quite a long time ago!
We are so pleased that the previous owners made a wise decision and agreed to sell the SS United States Conservancy for just US$3 million. The Conservancy was able to obtain the ship mainly due to the great generosity of Philadelphia-based philanthropist Mr. H.F. (Gerry) Lenfest. The Conservancy took possession of the SS United States on February 1, 2011. It is important to note that this Mr. Lenfest’s donation and those of so many others who have so generously given, the Conservancy was not only able to purchase the ship but in this way able to buy time to locate suitable developer/s and a permanent home for this great liner!
Above image was provided by SS United States Conservancy, but Photograph taken by Greg Shutters
Besides being a “Plank Owner” I also own 100 Sq inches on the starboard side of her aft funnel, which I paid for by the means of a donation quite some time ago. There have been many various unique ways to donate and assist to save this Great Liner, I believe there are still ways to assit, thus go online and check how you can assist this great liner go forward!
ssMaritime.com & savetheclassicliners.com has supported the SS United States Conservancy from the very beginning!
Visit the SS United States Conservancy Page
Also their NEWS PAGE
A Sad MV Doulos Update
As all “Save the Classic Liners” supporters will know well, that I am more than disillusioned that Eric Saw has decided to drag the ex MV Doulos up on the Indonesian Bintan Island, rather than use her as a genuine floating hotel as was originally planned. Thus this historic missionary ship, cruise ship, liner, migrant ship, freighter that served in two World wars, yet this so-called Singaporean Christian has destroyed all wonderful 102 year history.
As most of you will know I have a very long association with the ship, which goes back to her days as the MV Franca C and therefore it hurts me far more than most. I have been her official historian for some 31 years, and have sailed and spent a great deal of time on her whilst she was the Franca C and the Doulos. In addition, I directly assisted Mr. Saw to obtain the Doulos, for he was already rejected by her German owners as they were going to sell her to another organisation, but when all that fell through, I emailed him and told him to “place a bid NOW!” He did and the rest is history, but land-locking the Doulos was never ever part of the plan, for I would have given her to South African Mission!
Enter my 30 Page MV Doulos Feature
In July 2007 the QE2 was sold to Istithmar being the investment arm of “Dubai World” a wholly owned company of the Government of Dubai. However she would be taken over by Nakheel, also a “Dubai World” company would redevelop her and construct the new islands being built known as the “Palm Jumeirah” where she was going to be berthed to become a major luxury hotel. Istithmar paid and estimate £65 million (British Pounds) for the QE2.
Having completed her final official cruise,
the QE2 departed Southampton for the very last time on November 11, 2008, and
she began her farewell voyage to
It was a fitting welcome and her future seemed
assured, however things was not as it seemed for the financial crisis of 2008
caused Dubai to have a financial freefall and the wealthiest of its citizens
escaped the country, even leaving their Mercedes and BMW’s and super
luxury cars at the airport as they escaped the financiers who were about to pounce
on them, for most emptied their accounts and run. This disaster also left the
QE2 high and dry and although she was reregistered cheaply in
Today her future is unsure and when I visited
the ship a company insider told me that they doubted that she will ever become
a hotel, for the company had suffered far too greatly. Although, the country
did receive money’s from the outside to revive its tourism industry and
attempt to restore some pride, but to date numbers remain way down. In reality
The truth is that QE2’s future will most likely be a rapid and a secret sale to the breakers, and it will come so swiftly that we will be totally unprepared, and that is my greatest fear! Please stay alert and if you hear anything let me know!
QE2 sailed an amazing 5.6 million nautical miles, that's more than any other ship ever I know about, in other words that is like travelling to the moon and back 13 times. She has accommodated approximately 2.5 million guests and completed 802 Atlantic crossings and 24 full world cruises, thus some 1,438 voyages. That is an excellent record indeed!
A close up of a clean looking ship as she had recently been repainted
Photograph © Reuben Goossens
1964 - Cunard signs a contract to build the ship with John Brown Shipyard Clydebank, Scotland.
1967 - September 20 the ship was launched by HRH Queen Elizabeth II.
1968 – QE2 undertakes her deep sea trails; the first was on November 26 to 29, and the second, December 17 to 19.
1968 - QE2 departs on her maiden voyage, being
a cruise from Greenock to the
1969 - After renewed trails on April 1 to 8, Cunard takes delivery of the QE2 on April 18 for the second time.
1969 - On May 2 the QE2 commences her maiden
voyage from Southampton to
1970 - She crosses the Atlantic Westbound in record time of just three days, 20 hours and 42 minutes.
1972 - QE2 undergoes a refit and rebuilding as penthouses added to the top of the ship, altering her external appearance. Accommodating 604 First, 1,223 Tourist, and 1,740 one class when cruising.
1975 - QE2 departs from
1982 - The QE2 was requisitioned by the
British government as troopship to operate in Falklands Islands Campaign. She
carried 3,000 troops and 650 volunteer crew to the
1987 – In October the SS Queen Elizabeth
2 made her final Trans Atlantic crossing from
1988 –A new look MV Queen Elizabeth 2 complete with a new and far superior funnel and far more economic and faster that before, she returned to service and gained even more popularity on the Atlantic service.
1990 - Queen Elizabeth becomes the first Monarch to sail on the commercial liner with other passengers on board.
1995 - QE2 leaves
1996 - During her twentieth around the world cruise the QE2 passed her four millionth mile mark, and amazing feat, but there was more to come!
1998 - South African President Nelson Mandela
sails on the QE2 from
2002 - QE2 passes five million miles - a world first.
2004 - The QE2 was considered as being one of
the last of the great Trans Atlantic liners, for there has not been any true
liners since. Although, they pretend that the Queen Mary 2 is a liner, but she
certainly is not and neither was the QE 2 in her latter years, for both were
then cruise ships. Although QE2 was built as a liner that would also operate cruises,
but her main function was to be a liner; that means line voyages from the
2005 - The QE2 becomes the longest serving Cunard ship ever, surpassing the RMS Aquitania's 35 years.
2008 – November 11 Queen Elizabeth 2
2009 – September 21. The author saw and
photographed the QE2 today whilst on a around the world cruise on Dawn Princess
and noted that she was registered in Port Vila
2010 – January 29. QE2 broke loose from her moorings during a storm and was only just saved from destruction by two brilliant pilots.
2012 – July, 03. Sultan Ahmed bin Sulayem announced that a decision has been made to retain the ship’s exterior in her “classic and traditional shape, and install 300 rooms and use her as a hotel at the new Port Rashid International Cruise Terminal within several years! Sultan Sulayem said: “So we have decided to leave her basic design as it is. We will preserve her tradition. What we are doing today is what we should have done when we first bought her.” And I agree with him, they should have and she would have been operational by now!
2013 – July, after an Asian possibility,
there are great doubts for the ship as she has no power and she will be
deteriorating whilst at lay-up in
2015 – It is sad, but she is still laid-up in a dead ship state and deteriorating day by day! Although there seems to be interest by Scotland who is now taking a second look at bringing the QE2 back to the Clyde as a Hotel and a Tourist attraction. But has she gone downhill too far gone to be saved?
Photograph © Reuben Goossens
Click the Logo ABOVE to enter the site
FOTSQM Stands for: “Friends Of TS Queen Mary”
Click the Photograph above to enter their website and help to save this fine ship!
delightful 871 GRT (Gross Registered Ton) Triple Screw - TS Queen Mary was
built by the famed
But the company was contacted by 1935 in
regard the great new liner the RMS Queen Mary that would be launched by Her
Majesty Queen Mary, thus there was a slight name change made and she became the
TS Queen Mary II, but continued her regular
Queen Mary II was a spacious and certainly a comfortable ship and thus well suited to the large numbers of passengers on the service. Her passenger capacity made up for a good speed of 21 knots on her trials. Being a two class ship, having Cabin Class passengers located forward as well as the top deck extending aft giving the Steerage Class passengers a share of it, and also the sheltered space below it.
TS Queen Mary Specifications:
Builder: William Denny & Bros Ltd., Dumbarton.
Built for: Williamson Buchanan Steamers Ltd.
Engines: Triple Denny & Bros Steam Turbines.
Screws: Triple, direct drive.
Tonnage: 1933-1950 - 871 Gross Registered Tons.
. 1950-1957 - 917 GRT.
. 1957-onwards - 1,014 GRT.
Length: 252.5ft - 77m.
Beam: 35.1ft - 10.7m.
Draught: 10.1ft - 3.1m.
Speed: 19.5 knots max 21 knots.
Passengers: 2,086-day passengers.
The delightful TS Queen Mary was finally
retired after an evening showboat cruise from Largs
to Rothesay on September 27, 1977 after which she was
laid up in the “
I will not go into her story in relation to her being saved and restoration etc, for I will let the wonderful folk over in the UK, and a dear supporter of this Campaign who is fully involved, in fact he was influenced by “Save The Classic Liner Campaign” to do something, which is just great!
Enter the Site to Save the TS Queen Mary Here
I am well aware that the MV Baragoola may not fit my criteria as a “classic liner”, however, I believe with all my heart that this superb historic 1922 built vessel, which I have supported online for quite a long time needs to be restored and retained for the future!
The SS Baragoola was the last of a series of six
ferries that were designed by the Port Jackson & Manly Steamship Co. Ltd.,
and she was built in
MV Baragoola operated her final service from Circular Quay to Manly on January 8, 1983. Being such as popular vessel there was a huge number of passengers on this her final voyage. There were so many, that there were even people standing on the roof of the promenade deck. For this being her last official voyage, a pennant bearing the name “Baragoola” streamed from her front mast and she carried on her rear mast the house flag of the Port Jackson & Manly Steamship Company. No other Manly ferry has ever received a send-off as grand as she did.
After many tough years, with possibilities that she could well be sold for scrap she was sold to a number of owners, but each failed. I commenced the “Save the Baragoola Campaign” many years ago to bring her plight to all Australians and the world! The idea has always been to point readers to her owner’s websites, especially when this fine heritage listed MV Baragoola came under the ownership of the “Baragoola Preservation Association” in May 2010 and they have been actively raising funds and have been busy restoring this superb vessel to her original condition and obviously my cause is to see this through to its completion! I am not personally interested for any gratitude, for I have not even notified the Preservation Association of my support, it comes free and with my hopes!
Please visit the two page SS/MV Baragoola covering her history with many photographs!
I am proud to present a very special Australian ship for preservation
Like the famed historic Sydney Harbour ferry the MS Baragoola, which I strongly support in saving and preserving, and I am also adding the delightful 1963 built MV Cape Don, which is a unique all Australian vessel that should and must be retained at all costs!
The MV Cape Don was a most unique purpose-built
ship to service navigational aids (including manned lighthouses) all around
Since retirement this excellent ship, the “MV Cape Don Society” is now responsible for restoring this delightful vessel and they will be setting up a museum on board to tell the story of her many years of dedicated service. I suggest that you visit my webpage on her, that has many interesting photographs of her and you will discover all her details as well as further links!
Visit the MV Cape Don Feature
“Blue Water Liners sailing
to the distant shores.
I watched them come, I watched them go and I watched them die.”
Have a Question: Email Me.
But please ensure you name the ship you are enquiring about.
Due to old age, my reply may be slow, but I will do all in my power to reply!
Visit our ssMaritime Main INDEX
Where you will discover around 700 Classic Passenger & Passenger-Cargo Liners!
Where the ships of the past make history & the 1914 built MV Doulos Story
Please Note: Save The Classic Liners Campaign, ssMaritime.com and associated sites are 100% non-commercial and the author does not seek funding or favours and I have not and never will ask for funding or support!
Photographs on this site, ssmaritime and associate pages are either by the author or from the author’s private collection. In addition there are some images and photographs that have been provided by Shipping Companies or private photographers or collectors. Credit is given to all contributors, however, there are some photographs provided to me without details regarding the photographer or owner concerned. Therefore, I hereby invite if owners of these images would be so kind to make them-selves known to me (my email address can be found at the bottom of the page on www.ssmaritime.com), in order that due credit may be given.
ssMaritime is owned & © Copyright by Reuben Goossens - All Rights Reserved