Completed 1945 as White Sands for U.S.M.C. 1947 purchased by STUK and renamed "THAUMASTUS". 7-1959 laid-up Lough Swilly. 3-7-1961 arrived Blyth for scrap.

Also known as
White Sands
IMO number
Call sign
Construction number
16.478 ton
Length overall
Year of construction
Year of renaming/broken up
Service for Shell
1947 to 1961
Flag state
Home port




Date Visitor Anecdote
10/15/2016 - 12:08 Geoff Doherty

Joined on 25th July, 1958 when ship was laid up in Firth of Forth, she was basically a dead ship at that time with nothing, absolutely nothing, working on board. About 5 of us, all engineers I think, were put on board with a drum of diesel fuel and told to get the ship working asap so she could sail to Rotterdam for dry dock. The diesel was to get a generator working so we could have power and lighting. There was a superintendent in part time attendance but he stayed ashore in a hotel, we lived on the ship whilst we got it ready. Over the next few days we got her working as a skeleton crew joined and we sailed for Rotterdam on 29th July. The ship was in dry dock from 4th August until 25th September when we set sail for Fao in Persian Gulf.
I remained on the ship until 19th April 1959 when I was paid off, coincidentally in Rotterdam.

Hard work but thoroughly enjoyed it.


07/11/2014 - 10:41 Mike Offord

Joined Thaumastus as a 2nd year apprentice 1958 in Rosyth where she had been laid up with a cargo of fuel oil.
Sailed to Rotterdam and then spent four weeks there, firstly heating up the cargo so it could finally be pumped out, then tank-cleaning, followed by a complete dry dock and refit. Things must have been looking up for Shell.
During the docking, we watched the nearby launch of the SS Rotterdam, Holland's new trans-Atlantic liner, by the Queen.
Thaumastus then embarked on a world-wide tour, crossing the Pacific twice - once from Singapore to Anacortez, then again from Curacao to Sydney.
For some weeks we were stuck on the Paldju-Singapore run. It happened to be the time when Surkano took over Indonesia with some violence, so we were evacuating Dutch familes and their belongings each trip, kiddies, wives and refinery staff and all their stuff to Singapore. At that time, we dare not lie alongside at night, so moved off and anchored in the lagoon durinbg the dark. My most vivid meory is of what appeared to be 12-year old "soldiers" all hung about with hand grenades and machine guns, stealing everything not welded down.

Mike Offord