Sitmar Line
Page 2

Sitmar Line Funnel Badge

I transferred to London with my first wife Marcia, for a two year working holiday, travelling via Sydney, Brisbane, Barrier Reef, Singapore, Aden and Port Said disembarking at Naples, then travelled by train to Rome, Innsbruck and finally to London.

The photographs below were taken by me during the Northbound Voyage of M.V. "Fairsea" in March/April, 1965. (Michael Byard Collection)

Fairsea alongside at Station Pier, Port Melbourne
M.V. "Fairsea", in the colours of Sitmar Line, alongside Outer West Station Pier, Port Melbourne, in 1963.

Royal Australian Navy Base, Garden Island, Sydney,March 1965
Royal Australian Navy Base,
Garden Island, Sydney Harbour,
March 1965.

Great Barrier Reef
Great Barrier Reef Islands from "Fairsea", March, 1965.

Cape Cook from Fairsea
Great Barrier Reef ,Cape Cook from "Fairsea", March, 1965.

Fairsea having her forefoot repaired at Singapore
Coming in to Singapore, the ship hit the quay head on and dented her forefoot, which had to be repaired whilst we were there. This shows it being done. March, 1965.

On the night Fairsea left Singapore the "Chinese Night Party" was held. Here are three of the passengers - Marcia (left) myself and another- whose name I forget - dressed in silk brocade dressing gowns. (Below and left) These items proved to be a very popular purchase in "Change Alley" , near the seafront in Singapore

Chinese Night Party, March 1965

Scene at Crossing the Line Ceremony
One of the "unlucky victims" of
King Neptune at the
Crossing The Line Ceremony being "gunged" with a mixture of soap, flour, water and oil, which smelt awful, then shaved and washed with sea water.

Marcia and I on Chinese Night
Another scene, Crossing the Line Ceremony, March 1965
Another "victim" being made to kneel before His Majesty King Neptune.
Forward Games Deck
Part of the Games Deck. Fairsea heading towards Aden, 8th April 1965
Royal Navy Carrier, HMS Albion at Aden, April 1965
Aden - Royal Navy's Aircraft Carrier HMS Albion, lying at anchor, 8th April 1965 .

Marcia in Aden with the Gang
Aden high street with Marcia and 'The Gang'(Marcia at right) 8th April 1965 .

Aden Township, April 1965
The township of Aden, from Fairsea,
8th April 1965 .
View of Fairsea from launch going to Aden Quayside, April 1965
M.V. "Fairsea" lying at anchor in Aden Harbour photo taken from the launch heading to the quay, 8th April 1965 .
RN Base at Aden 1965
Passing close to the Royal Naval Base, 8th Aden, April 1965
Leaving Aden bound for the Red Sea
Leaving Aden, April 1965, heading into the sun, bound for the Red Sea and the Suez Canal.
Fairsea about to enter the Suez Canal
Fairsea about to enter the Suez Canal, with Port Suez in the distance, April 1965 .
Caltex Oil Tanker in the Red Sea, April 1965
Caltex oil tanker in the Red Sea,
April 1965 .

The gold mask of Tutankhamun at Cairo Museum, April 1965
The Golden Mask of Tutankhamun,
Cairo Museum, April 1965 .
Overseas Visitors Club Card cover
Reverse side of the OVC membership card
At this time, in the 1950s to early 1970s a club had been set up for oversees visitors to London which enabled accommodation to be obtained, either short or long term, but initially when anyone joined they got a weeks free accommodation in Earls Court London ( Kangaroo Valley as it was known because of the numbers of Australian and New Zealanders that made the place their home. Upon joining, one was issued with a membership card, as shown above - this one belonging to my long time school pal John Dickinson, as are the globetrotter covers shown below, and included here with his permission and my thanks.
GlobetrotterMag 1 1960GlobetrotterMag 1960
In London I worked in the Sitmar Office, situated in Billiter Street, right opposite Lloyds of London, ( the original building) from April 1965 until February 1967, with the following staff

Harold Sharpe, Sitmar Line London's Director
Harold Sharpe, Director of Sitmar Line, London in his Office, Christmas 1965. He died from a massive heart attack in, I believe, the late 1960's

Harold Sharpe with Secretary Dawn, Xmas 1965
Harold Sharpe with his
Secretary, Dawn,
Christmas 1965.

Jennifer Ditmar, Sitmar Xmas Party 1965Ian and  Jenny, Sitmar Line Whitsun 1966
Jennifer Dittmar was from the Adelaide Office, working in London and was Berthing Officer for M.V."Fairsea", ( she later married a fireman) whilst I changed ships and looked after "Fairsky".

The photograph on the right was taken when we visited Lands End at Whitsun, 1966.

Members of Sitmar London staff at Office Xmas Party, 1965
Office Christmas Party, 1965, with Jennifer Dittmar, at the back, front left Rene, front right was Mr Gutheridge, with Dawn, David Baker and two others whose names I have forgotten.
David has since contacted me, having come across this site.... a voice from the past.
Sitmar Xmas Party 1965
Jennifer Dittmar with
Hugh Borge, Office Manager
with Rene looking on, Christmas 1965.
As with all these and other photographs on this site they are placed in a historical context. Sitmar Line was eventually purchased by P and O in the 1990s and the name therefore disappeared, whilst the cruise section of P and O were themselves were taken over by Carnival Cruises in 2002/3, whilst P and O itself has finally disappeared being taken over by, in effect, the Dubai Government. So both these companies have gone, as has the building in Billiter Street, where we used to work. In place of the demolished building a new modern structure has taken its place.
I went to Austria in December, 1966, returning middle of February 1967 and, having resigned,
returned to Australia aboard the P and O Lines "Orsova", for which see that page under
P and O and sub-page "Orsova".
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