Completed on the River Tyne in 1952 by Swan Hunter & Wigham Richardson Ltd, Wallsend, for Norwegian owners Det Bergenske Dampskibselskab (Bergen Line), built for the company's scheduled services between Bergen and Tyneside.
Driven by Parsons steam turbines, built on Tyneside, she had a 22 knot service speed, her smooth fast running made her a popular ship to travel on. Accommodation was provided for 119 passengers in first class and 384 in tourist class. Her garage space could hold around 35 cars, which were loaded on board by crane.
Beginning in April 1953 Leda ran twice weekly between Bergen, Stavanger and the Tyne, from the mid 1960's this became three times weekly.
In the autumn of 1974 Leda was withdrawn from service and laid up at Bergen.
1977 sold to Stord Vaerft A/S for use as a shipyard worker accommodation vessel.
1979 sold to Kuwait Livestock Trading Co. and renamed NAJLA, the proposal to convert her to a livestock carrier was shelved.
Between May 1979 and September 1980 she acted as an accommodation vessel at Stornoway, before returning to lay up again in Norway.
Her subsequent career as a cruise ship saw her carry the names ALEGRO, BETSY ROSS, AMALFI, then finally STAR OF VENICE.
In 2001 she arrived at Aliaga for breaking
This view from June 1970 shows her departing the Tyne Commission Quay, North Shields, destination Norway
Image copyright © emdee 2022
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