Methane Princess (1)

About

Completed 1964 in Methane Princess for Methane Tankers (STUK). 1981 laid-up alongside sistership Methane Progress in Fal. 1988 re-activated by Falmouth Shiprepairers and carried eight cargoes on charter to British Gas before laid-up again in the Fal. 1997 scrapped Alang.

Information
IMO number
5412583
Call sign
GMHL
Construction number
1071
Tonnage
24.607 ton
Year of construction
1964
Year of renaming/broken up
1997
Service for Shell
1964 to 1997
Cargo
Class
Flag state
Home port
Manager
Shipyard
Status
Photo(s)

Sailors

Name Job Period Details
Richard Scott engineer cadet
Bruce Hermeston 5th engineer 1963
William Miller steward 1964
Arnold Dunlop radio officer 1964
Mike Parkin 3rd mate 1964 to 1965
Derek Jackson 4th engineer 1965
Geoff Walker 2nd cook and baker 1965
Brian Charles P... 2nd cook and baker 1965 to 1966
Geoffrey Walker catering 1965
Michael Stoddart deck cadet 1965
Richard Smith junior ordinary seaman 1965
Peter John Houghton 5th engineer 1966
George Elliott senior deck apprentice 1966
Stuart Kneen junior engineer 1966
John Pegden catering boy 1966
John Pearce 4th engineer, 3rd engineer 1966
Gary Watkinson catering boy/galley boy 1966
Frank H. Dixon radio officer 1966 to 1967
William Muirhead deck apprentice 1966
Brian Lindo 5th engineer 1967
Ken Heiser 3rd mate 1967
Terry Savage able seaman 1967 to 1968
Brian Dootson 5th engineer 1967 to 1968
Alan Jones Alan... 2nd steward 1967 to 1968
Mike Riley 5th engineer 1967
James D. Jim Auton 5th engineer 1967
Gerald Wood catering boy/galley boy 1968
Anthony Powles deck boy 1968 to 1969 1st trip
Alan Watson uncertificated 3rd officer 1968
Robert Rogers assistant steward 1968 to 1969
Michael Battrick 3rd mate 1968
Nick Emerson deck apprentice 1968
Andre Donald Hunt deckhand 1969
Steve Cook crew messman 1969
Christopher Benn deck boy 1969 1st trip
Stan Riley cargo officer 1969
Roger Parker 1 fireman 1969
Kevin Murray junior radio officer 1970 to 1971
Graham Walden 2nd engineer 1970
Trevor Martin cook 1970
Norman Woodhouse 2nd officer 1970
Jeffrey Clark unknown 1970
John Ian Murray 5th engineer 1970 to 1971
Robert Gorge Hall assistant steward 1971 to 1974
Stuart Lord 3rd engineer 1971
Ronald E Tait Orkney 2nd steward 1971 Just to confirm,I never sailed on the Methane Princess,this is an error. I SAILED ON THE Mathane Progress..
Len Hallows 5th engineer 1971
Kevin Robson catering boy/galley boy 1971
Geoff Murby started jos premoted sos 1971
Paul Evans engineer cadet 1971
Gary Waite 1 catering boy/galley boy 1971 to 1972
Wayne Rizzo catering boy/galley boy 1971
Simon Reilly cargo officer 1972 to 1973
John Wood deck boy 1972
William George ... 2nd steward 1972
Damian Trodden galley rat 1972
Stewart A. Wood 5th engineer 1972 to 1973
Alan Knight 3rd mate 1972
Charles Stobbart catering offficer 1973
Chris Goode assistant steward 1973
David Taylor 5th engineer 1973
Graham Walden 2nd engineer 1973
Roy Rodwell 4th engineer 1973 to 1974
John Mason 5th engineer 1973
Bernard Teale cargo officer 1974 to 1975
James D. Jim Auton 2nd engineer 1974
Steve Sharples catering boy 1975
Ronald Davies 2nd engineer 1975 2nd engineer
Malcolm Newell 2nd engineer 1975
Eamon Mullin cadet 1975 1st trip
Simon Reilly chief engineer 1975 to 1976
Damian Battman engineer cadet 1975
John Pickering chef kok 1975
Peter B. Pamment 2nd officer 1975
Eric Halcrow 5th engineer 1975 to 1976
James D. Jim Auton cargo officer 1975
David Heron 2nd cook and baker 1975
Anthony Tony Jo... radio officer 1975
Lawrence Lawson... 2nd engineer 1976
Bill Glaister deck cadet 1976 to 1977
Robin Campbell-... extra 2nd engineer officer 1976
Robert Jones fireman 1976
Martin Murdoch 5th engineer 1976
Andy Willmore 2nd mate 1976
Peter O'connor cadet 1976
Garry Read navigation cadet 1976
Mike Gilmour 2 radio officer 1976
John Jack Raine 4th engineer 1976
Malcolm Semple ... engineer cadet 1976
John Daly catering boy/galley boy 1976
Cliff Funnell deck cadet 1977
Graham Morgan deck boy 1977 1st trip
Brian Boyle 3rd engineer 1977
Pete Clementson radio officer 1977 to 1978
Derek Jackson cargo officer 1977 to 1978
Terence William... senior ordinary seaman 1977 to 1978
Bill Watts apprentice engineer 1977
Steven Balderstone steward 1977 to 1987
John Brown deck cadet 1977
Kevin Hunter steward 1978 to 1979
Peter Wright engineer cadet 1978
Dave Page Davey catering boy 1978
John Hinkley engineer cadet 1978
Rogerpalmer 2nd engineer 1978 2nd engineer
Graham Walden 2nd engineer 1979 to 1980
Andrew John Field deck boy 1979 My first ship
Chris Grimson deck cadet 1979
Steve Seal 5th engineer 1979
Mike Nicholson deck cadet 1979 My first trip, fastnet yach race, people smuggling whores onboard, transvestite stewards. A shock to the system.
Richard Paul Helliar 3rd mate 1979
Robin Macleod 2nd mate 1979 to 1980
Brian Mcglinchey 2nd cook 1979
Colin Mckay 3rd officer 1980
Stephen Osborne deck cadet 1980
Don Shanahan 2nd cook 1980
Joseph Moore 2nd engineer 1980
Garry Marshall 2nd cook 1980
Ken Williamson able seaman 1980
Robin Dunn 3rd officer 1981
Joseph Moore cargo engineer 1981 to 1982
David E. Byrne deck cadet 1981
Garry Marshall 2nd cook 1981
Andrew Thomas engineer cadet 1981
Graham Walden 2nd engineer 1981 to 1982
Stuart Gallaway chief officer 1981 to 1984
David Holden deck apprentice 1981
Stephen Foster 3rd deck officer 1981
Mike Bailey 3rd engineer 1982
George Anderson 2nd engineer 1987
Gary Jones 5th engineer 1988 to 1998
Don Jenkins 5th engineer 1988 to 1989
Terry Crook 2nd engineer 1989 to 1990
Christopher Hawkes 5th engineer 1989
Robert Rotheram... 2nd cook 1989 to 1990
Marcus Brady 4th engineer 1989 to 1990
Dave Freeman chief officer 1989 to 1991
Stephen Sowrey 4th engineer 1989 to 1992
Andrew Salt Thesalts engineer cadet 1990
Dick Hurtz head wanker 1990 to 1995
Richard Willmott officer in charge 1991
Steven Asplet officer in charge 1991 to 1992
David George chief officer 1992 to 1993
Raymond Laws cook steward 1992 to 1993 Reactivated Brest sept 92
Steven Asplet officer in charge 1992 to 1993
Derek Wallace D... master 1993
Scott J Newlands 5th engineer 1993
Andy Stewart 1 engineer cadet 1993
Inaki Gaztelurrutia chief engineer 1994 to 1995
Josu Arribalzaga chief officer 1996 to 1997
Jabier Egidazu captain (commanding officer) 1996 to 1997

Anecdotes

Date Visitor Anecdote
12/07/2015 - 23:36 Alan Knight

In February 1972, I was 3/O of "Methane Princess" with Capt. Stanley Dean. We were homeward-bound from Arzew, for Canvey Island, and approaching Portland Bill with a howling gale and heavy swell from the West i.e. astern. During my 2000-2400 watch, I sighted a very faint white light ahead, but because of the flying spray, I could not figure out how close it was. Nothing was "painting" on the radar. I altered course 10 degrees to Starboard and as I did so, the white light was obscured by a red flare and clouds of smoke; the light was obviously very close. I hit the General Alarm and rang "Standby". I went to the Port bridge-wing, and saw a small sail-boat pass through the loom of the red side-light. When Capt. Dean arrived in the Wheelhouse, he took the con, and directed me to transmit "Mayday Relay". Capt. Dean was a masterful ship-handler, and he manoeuvred the "Methane Princess" (single-screw, steam turbine, no bow-thruster) astern into the teeth of the gale, and made a lee for the sail-boat. The lone occupant of the sail-boat "Nomis" was practising for the Single-handed Transatlantic Race, when he was thrown, and he suffered several broken ribs. We threw him a heaving line, and attached a polypropylene mooring rope to it, but he was too badly injured to heave it in. He was, however, able to get his outboard motor started, and with "Methane Princess" providing a lee, he was able to motor towards Portland Bill. The Portland RNLI boat launched bringing a doctor (who was also a yachtsman) and the story had a happy ending.

09/23/2015 - 20:20 Damian Trodden

After leaving North Africa with a full cargo of methane gas, the ship proceeded to the South of France to discharge. We were anchored 2 miles off the french coast .During a lightning storm the ship's uprise was struck by lightning and burst into flames. It was 2am and all the alarms sounded. We had just watched all our movies and everybody was pissed! The Crew Messman (Stevie) was standing at the top of the stairwell from the lower deck accommodation shouting "big explosion on deck, everyone up". The Chief Cook (Fred), after being told that the ship was on fire, turned in his bed and said "let her burn". The 2nd Cook and Baker and Saloon Steward were out on deck, saw the flames from the uprise, and decided to launch lifeboats and abandon ship. The Saloon Steward took a heaving line and threw it over the end and proceeded to climb down it. Meanwhile and Chief Officer and Chief Engineer were running aft to release the CO2 to try and extinguish the fire, tripped over the leaving line and fell in a heap. They followed the line to where it went and saw the Saloon Steward with life buoy wrapped round him climbing down into the water. He was told to get back on board, to which he replied "France is 2 miles over there and that's where I'm going. Not back on that bomb". The 2nd Cook had the life boat lowered down to embarkation deck and I, the Galley Boy, along with the Chief Mate and the Chief Engineer, seemed to be the only ones doing our fire duty. My duties were to close all doors and ports on masters and saloon deck, to which I locked the old man in his cabin. Thankfully for all of us the Mate and Chief Engineer got the fire under control. I was only 16 and thought my life was over. Tears running down my face and my life flashed before me just waiting for the big bang.

01/16/2012 - 01:50 Steven Asplet

I was onboard during the first Gulf War, I had a visit from the Royal navy, and ended up starring in a training film for chemical warfare gear,after that many films were made onboard for walport,safety films,exploding purifiers and the like, It was a great time, the girls from Famouth were very friendly,as i recall.I stayed in a hotel in Truro, stuffy place, however on Eric Westons approval moved to a fantastic boat house up by the Herron pub,the owner of the boathouse lived in the large house above with terrific views of the Fal, he was building a boat to sail around the world in with his wife , however she wouldnt go,and leave her cat,so one night over a few beers in the boathouse a devilish scheme was concocted to be rid of the problem,who knows of the outcome.Anyway great times, and good memories of the Princess.Too many stories to recall. Steve A.

03/26/2011 - 19:16 John Pearce

This was my prize for being good boy on the Plagiola. The chief engineer was a Scot and promoted me while on board. My brother came on board from a 'Hungry Hain' and was amazed that we burnt the excess LNG with the bunker fuel to give us a perfect flame.
Wife was also visiting me on Canvey Island, but didn't spoil a wonderful trip!

12/28/2010 - 15:55 Gary Watkinson

I sailed on the methane princess for three mounths as galley boy in 1966, my first ship after training school at gravesend.

09/13/2010 - 18:54 Terence William...

i loved geting back to canvey island,as the people were nice,i always did the 4 to 8 watch.

03/15/2010 - 22:21 Wayne Rizzo

the methane princess, was my first ship after leaving gravesend training school. it was great for me as it was 10 days round trip. my dad worked on the canvy island oil refinery, him and mum would come and visit me and get drunk in my cabin. one day mum went up on deck with a ciggeret in her mouth, needless to say she got shouted at and so did i.

01/28/2010 - 20:51 George Elliott

Myself & George Elliott were onboard during the seaman's strike from May to July 1966 with the ship laid up at Canvey Island and found our 'new' duties included cleaning cabins and helping in the Galley. There were more exciting moments when there was a major internal hull leak with methane on board and welders at Tilbury managed to set the ship on fire. At Arzew in Algeria a lightning strike during loading set the gas risers alight and we looked like refinery flares.

10/15/2009 - 18:28 Stewart A. Wood

I was Junior Engineer on both the Princess and Progress. We did the initial "cool-down" of the Barcelo LNG terminal and while waiting at anchor, were struck by lightning and the forward gas flair stack ignited. Speedy acxtion by the Chief, Ron Groombridge saw the snuffer valves operated and the Halon Gas released to quickly extinguished the flames