|Photographer:||Ben [View profile]||Title:||ROBIN||Added:||May 05, 2007|
|ROBIN was built at Bow Creek in East London in 1890 by Mackenzie, MacAlpine and Co. of Blackwall. She was fitted out in East India Dock and moved to Dundee in Scotland to be installed with a Gourlay triple-expansion engine.
The first owner was Arthur Ponsonby of Newport. On her maiden voyage, ROBIN travelled further than she was to go on any single trip for the next ten years, reaching the town of Bayonne on France's Atlantic coast.
She was bought in 1892 by Alexander Blackwater to form the Robin Steamship Company. During the first decade of her service, the ship's crew and voyage lists show that ROBIN visited more than 140 ports.
In 1900 she went to the Blanco Hermanos Company in Spain who renamed her MARIA. She continued her coastal work around Spanish shores, carrying cargoes of scrap iron and coal. She played a part in the First World War, hauling materials to the French west coast under naval protection. For the majority of the Spanish Civil War she proved luckier than many similar ships for despite accounts of gun-running for the Republicans she managed to remain out of danger.
In 1917 she was sold again to Hijos De Angel Perez who kept her until 1966. During the 1960s, the ship underwent some reconstructive surgery; the boiler was converted to oil from coal, although the engine, crucially, remained the same.
Her last Spanish owner, Senor Eduardo de la Sota, intended to withdraw and scrap her in 1974. The Maritime Trust stepped in and brought her back to England. She is now owned by the Robin Trust and is open to the public in Londonís Docklands. The engine is by Gourlay Bros of Dundee and is triple expansion.
ROBIN currently houses a photographic gallery, designed specifically for local schools
More at http://www.ssrobin.com/
Photo copyright Ben @ riverthames.co.nr