3/06/07…Stirling Moore has emailed with the following:
I travelled on the Dunera in 1958/59 from Southhampton to Limassol in Cyprus. Fond memories of going through the Bay of Biscay and around the straights of Gibraltar where the sea changed to a beautiful blue.
22/04/07…Carr has contacted us…
I remember travelling out to Singapore in 1956, I was 7 or 8 at the time. I travelled with my Mother and two younger brothers to join my father who had been posted the Malayan Boys School in Nee Soon. I remember the six week trip with fondness since we had to go via the Cape. The Suez Canal had been closed. Mum must have had her hands full though with the three of us.
18/12/06…Tom Herbert has emailed with the following…
In 1953 travelled from Southampton to Singapore on the Dunera, when I was aged 5, with my mother, brother and sister. We were going to join my father who was stationed in Tengah. I am unsure of the actual dates but we were in England for the Coronation in the summer of ’53 and I remember that we were in Singapore for Christmas so I guess it must have been late summer early Autumn.
Does anyone know the exact dates? For a 5 year old I remember quite a bit, including the bad weather in the Bay of Biscay, stopping at Aden and going shopping.
Does anyone know the exact dates of the trip? This will fill in a bit of my family history
Having just found your site, I thought I’d chip in with my reminiscences. I sailed back from Hong Kong on MS Dunera – in March 1960 if my memory serves (it is getting increasingly difficult!). My father was in the Lancashire Regiment and we were returning from a 3–year tour in Hong Kong. I was 13 at the time – and it was a great adventure. I remember waking up after we anchored in Gibraltar – I looked out of our cabin window – and there was ‘our’ ship half a mile away. It took me a while to work out that it wasn’t Dunera, but a sister ship (Devonshire?, Devonia?) that was a carbon copy. We sailed into Southampton – and berthed next to one of the ‘Queens’ – that completely dwarfed us. I could go on – but that’s all for now.Does anyone have a sailing schedule?? I’d like to find out the exact dates of the trip……
PS – We sailed to Hong Kong in 1957 aboard the Troopship Oxfordshire.
27/10/06….Linda Mitchell has emailed us…. Having come across your website I thought I would add a few memories of my time on the Dunera. My mother seems to think we sailed from Singapore in 1954. I was about 6 years old and I remember having to go to school in the dining room and not enjoying it very much. We were travelling back to the UK along with my baby brother who was born in Singapore and was a complete surprise to our family in the UK because my mother didn’t bother to tell anyone about him. I have very happy memories of the ship and the time spent on it.
16/07/06… We’ve surprised Graham Hibbert somewhat! I was amazed that my EM appeared on your site so quickly. I would love to hear from any one that was on the Dunera 58/59 in particular any medical staff or any one that was treated in the ships hospital. Your photo might be in my book, (ISBN 1 904546 42 0) and I have other photo’s.
Good luck with your web site.
Best regards Graham Hibbert
Many thanks Graham – we have slipped up a few times and been a bit slow – we try not do do this, but just occasionally…….!
10/07/06…Graham Hibbert has emailed us with this one…
I was RAMC medical staff on the Dunera 1958/59 and have just had a book published called “From Bollington To Zanzibar”. It includes an account of life on the Dunera with photos of the ships hospital patients and staff.
It was August 1956 and I was in the RAF with the trade of radar operator when word came through to my posting in West Hartlepool that a number of rader ops were needed to set up camps in Cyprus before the balloon went up in Suez. I joined the MS Dunera at Southampton and that was the start of an amazing 10-day voyage that I will relate another time. Was anyone else on that trip?
In June 1958 I sailed on dunera as an RAF regular to Cyprus via Gibraltar. A pleasant 10 day cruise.
29/03/06…Sandra Evans emailed in
I sailed from Limassol to Southampton on the Dunera in Ocober 1959 with my parents and younger sister. I was sixteen years old and those ten days were the last of my childhood freedom before I started working. I always remember the ship with fondness.
19/12/2005….(another late one from Michael…..sorry) Hi Mike
Have had great fun digging up old stuff, Dunera menus attached also my father’s pass to meet us on board, Aden had no quays so we went in and out on tenders. You might look at www.khormaksar.school.users.btopenworld.com as so many people went there on Dunera in the 1950s before the aircraft age. I’m working on story about life there in the early 50s. The menu cards are attached, will be interested to see if I hear from anyone and will of course let you know. Happy days, Thanks again
13/02/06…Maurice Williams has emailed:
I travelled on the MS Dunera to Cyprus on the 11th October 1958 during my National service period. I was in REME and attached to the 25th Field Regiment Royal Artillery who were being shipped out there. We left from Southampton and called into Malta for stores etc. The journey to Cyprus took 10 days and there were approx. 1200 troops on board. Most of the sleeping quarters were on ‘H’ deck which was two decks below the water line.
I sailed on MS Dunera in November 1960 as a member of the 1st Battalion, Queen’s Royal Surrey Regiment. We were an advance party destined for Aden to take over from the Royal Scottish Fusiliers. I remember the trip took six weeks, can that be right?
18/12/2005 – Michael McRitchie has messaged in….
Dunera took the McRitchie family to Aden in July 1951 to join father at RAF Khormaksar. The voyage took two weeks and for a 10–yr–old was a great adventure until the Army Education Corps spoiled our second week by introducing school in dining room. Highlights were awnings going up and ship’s officers changing into white shorts through the Med, the trip through Suez, the bumboatmen who haggled with passengers before throwing up a line for purchasers to haul up their goods, and Port Said gilli-gilli men who were allowed aboard to perform conjuring tricks by saying the magic words (gilli–gilli of course!)
Mother had a cabin with Christine and Niall, who was four, while to my delight I was put in a cabin with three other boys including Barry Maddocks, who was to be a friend throughout our tour. The stormy Bay of Biscay kept us quiet but after that we became total pests until the Education Corps pressganged us for five hours’ schooling a day.
Khormaksar school had two houses, Dunera and Dilwara, to which we were allocated depending on transport, for some reason most Aden postings sailed on the two sister ships. In 1952 it was decided to transport Service personnel by air rather than sea, and two centuries of troopships gradually came to an end.
Comber, Co Down
1951 pic attached, B & I line trooper colours white with blue stripe. Also have menu cards from July that year if you would like to post them, drop me a line. Food was very good in those austere days
07/11/05 Linda..Sandra’s sister has also written in!…. Hi, my sister Sandra has already posted a comment on HMS Dunera (as it was at the time) – I remember I had just turned 5 when we boarded the ship and I had to go to school for the first time ever. I screamed blue murder at being left with a load of strangers! I was not impressed, especially as my sister didn’t have to go as she was only 3.
06/11/05 Sandra has called in….I was on Dunera with my mother and sister in September 1957, on our way to live with dad who was already at RAF Khormaksar in Aden. I don’t remember much about it as I was only three at the time, but I do remember plastering the mirror in our cabin with mum’s lipstick! One of her postcards at the time tell of her and “a neighbour” playing tombola on the ship. I have that postcard (a picture of the ship at sea) which I will scan in when I can work out how to.
06/11/05 Christina has called in….I was on the Dunera 1960 from Wayneflete school
Nigel Sweeney contacted us….. Sailed on MV Dunera from S’oton to Singapore in 1960 as a 10 year old, with my parents en–route to Kluang, Malaya. 4 wonderful weeks of aclimatization.
26th June….Betty Cochrane has messaged us here…. I sailed out of Southampton on the Troop Ship DUNERA, on board was the 1st Battalion Coldstream Guards enroute to Kenya. I am sure the year was 1959, but would like to know the exact date if possible. I had a super time on board considering it was the first time to foreign shores for me…..
Can anyone shed any light on the exact date here…?
13th April ’05…Bernard has written in….Hi, It was in April 1953 that I sailed from Southampton bound for Port Said. In though days she was a troopship. It took us ten days to get to Port Said with a stormy passage through the Bay of Biscay.
Apart from that I enjoyed the journey very much, if only I had realised what I was sailing to, the biggest beach I have ever seen. I still hold fond memories of the MS Dunera. I have seen several photographs but there seems to be some confusion as to the weight of the MS Dunera is anyone able to tell me its true weight? Regards…Bernard
Ian Beaton has contacted us – Along with my mother and brother we sailed from Southampton early December 1951 and arrived in Singapore early January 1952 to join my father who was in the RAF and based at Seletar. We had to attend school in the mornings, and were let loose in the afternoons to cause havoc, around the vessel, there were a lot of us kids on that trip, anyone else out there……? Please contact us and your message will be passed on – Thank you
Many thanks David – things had been getting quiet around here!!
Sir – I was one those many troops that sailed on H M Dunera which sailed from Southampton in 1952 . Our destination was Korea. We were to join the Welsh Regiment already at the front line. We went as far as Hong Kong in H M Dunera and then by another boat to Japan for further training and eventually to Korea.
The journey from home to Hong Kong took about six weeks and every minute I revelled in. Many troops were sea sick in the Bay of Biscay especially in the Galley where we had to sit on the stairs while in queue for food. The decks below were full of hammocks and on some decks galvanised bunk beds. Mine was a hammock and swung with the motion of the rise and swell of the seas.
My memory of her was one of delight and on one occasion on guard duty in the brig,nobody to guard of course, I lay full out on the table, face up and felt my stomach move forward and backwards with each pitch of the bow as it sunk into the waves and then up again as it sailed on like a great whale. But I was never sea sick and like many had never left the shores of Britain. Right now I am glad that I did and I take great pleasure in telling you that ship was classic.
David T Williams
Brian Kendall has written in: I sailed on the Dunera twice..the first time was in 1959 with my mother and brother..we sailed fron Southampton to Aden to join my Father and then the 4 of us returned to England in 1961. This was during the time when she was a troop ship, from what I remember about 4 years prior to her being decommissioned.We were lucky enough to have cabins and not beds in dormitories. The outward trip was absolutely fabulous with a wonderful crew who treated us all so well but by the time we returned to England she had become very tired and the accomodation had deteriorated as had the attitude of the crew possibly because of her future fate. Nevertheless I still have really fond memories of my first ever long sea trip although it’s 45 or so ago. I lost my father last year, he was 94, and he would often talk about those days and all the good times like our trips to overseas postings.