british Canadian Pacific Steamships (Canadian Pacific Ocean Serv., Canadian Pacific Nav., Canadian Pacific Railway) SS Empress of Britain [+1940]
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  Details  
 
general
nationality british
purpose transport
type ocean liner
propulsion steam turbine
date built 1931
is nickname no
status
live live
details
weight (tons) 42348  grt
dimensions 223.5 x 29.8 x 17.1 m
material steel
engine 12 steam turbines geared to 4 screwshafts
power 12753  n.h.p.
speed 24  knots
yard no. 530
IMO/Off. no. 162582
about the loss
cause lost torpedo
date lost 28/10/1940  [dd/mm/yyyy]
casualties  max.45rank: 596
about people
builder
John Brown & Co. Ltd., Clydebank (Scotland)
engine by
John Brown & Co. Ltd., Clydebank (Scotland)
owner
Canadian Pacific Steamships (Canadian Pacific Ocean Serv., Canadian Pacific Nav., Canadian Pacific Railway), Liverpool
captain Charles Havard Sapsworth
complement 2
no. of crew 416
no. of passengers 205
about the wreck
status broken in several pieces
depth (m.) 160 max. / 138 min. (m)
orientation 80°
position on seabed turtle
protected
war grave
references
references
 Lloyd´s of London, Lloyd's Register of Shipping
updates
entered by Allen Tony
entered 26/06/2007
last update Vleggeert Nico
last update 28/10/2013
 
  Position  
 
Lettens Jan31/12/2009
latitudeUK hydro member
longitudeUK hydro member
AISUK hydro member
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dist. homeportdist. homeport
ref. used
 UK Hydrographic Office
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  The Wreck today  
 

Lettens Jan31/12/2009

UK hydro member
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 UK Hydrographic Office

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copyright: Chipchase Nick
 
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 copyright: Unknown - onbekend - inconnu copyright: Unknown - onbekend - inconnu copyright: Mark Dixon copyright: Mark Dixon 
 
  copyright: Unknown - onbekend - inconnu copyright: Chipchase Nick copyright: Chipchase Nick 
 
 copyright: Chipchase Nick copyright: Chipchase Nick copyright: UK Hydrographic Office copyright: Unknown - onbekend - inconnu 
 
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  Hydrographic Service UK  
   
  History  
 
Allen Tony11/06/2008Empress of Britain SS was a British Ocean Liner steamer of 42,348 tons built in 1931 by John Brown, Clydebank, Scotland, Yard No 530. She was powered by a steam turbine, Parson Type.

She was owned by the CANADIAN PACIFIC STEAMSHIPS LTD. CANADIAN PACIFIC RAILWAY CO.

On the 28th October 1940 when on route from TABLE BAY for LIVERPOOL carrying a cargo of 300 tons sugar & 300 tons of general stores she was torpedoed without warning by German submarine U-32 and sunk. 45 persons were lost from total of 623.

On 26th October 1940 she was spotted by a German bomber north west of the Irish coast. Attacked and bombed she burned ferociously for two days.

Most of the troops she was carrying were picked up by escort ships. Having been taken in tow, she was torpedoed by German submarine U-32 on 28th October 1940 and sunk.

The wreck now lies upside down in 160m of water of the N.W coast of Ireland.
ref. used 
 His Majesty'S Stationary Office, British Merchant Shipping (Losses) WW2
Elpresidente16/07/2011Darkstar dived the Empress of Britain on 13th July 2011. Bottom divers were Jeff Cornish, Steve Slater, Duncan Keates and Paul Mee. Support divers Tim Cashman and Mark Evans. Skippers were Mark Dixon and George Mair.

The team confirmed that the wreck is upside down with its keel in 135m and 161m to the seabed.

Two multibeam images of the wreck from this expedition are attached
Lettens Jan13/03/2010Both ocean liners and sisterships, Empress of Canada and Empress of Britain, owned by the Canadian Pacific Steamship Co., were lost in the second WWII.
Lettens Jan31/12/2009UK hydro member
ref. used 
 UK Hydrographic Office


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About Owners
 
Canadian Pacific Steamships (Canadian Pacific Ocean Serv., Canadian Pacific Nav., Canadian Pacific Railway), Liverpool

Canadian Pacific was a Canadian company which owned ships, trains and planes:

The original company was Canadian Pacific Railway Co. incorporated in 1882 as a Canadian company.

In 1901, Canadian Pacific Navigation Co. was bought.

In 1915, Canadian Pacific Ocean Services Ltd. was formed in Liverpool.

In 1921 the name was changed to Canadian Pacific Steamships Ltd.

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About Builders
 John Brown & Co. Ltd., Clydebank (Scotland)
One of the largest naval shipbuilders in the UK, John Brown produced both battleships and cruisers in quantity for the Royal Navy and approved foreign clients (Chile, Japan). Brown's was also noted for ocean liners of the largest size and speed, including the LUSITANIA, AQUITANIA, QUEEN MARY, and both QUEEN ELIZABETHs for the Cunard Line. The company had its own steelworks in Sheffield and shipyard in Clydebank, a city actually named for its shipyard, near Dalmuir on the Clyde. At peak workforce before WWI the works directly employed over 10,000 men. In the midst of this prewar arms race and prosperity in 1907, the company issued a commemorative volume on the completion of the LUSITANIA. Not content to tout the ship herself, the company produced an impressive brag piece for the yard -- our source for many of the photos here reproduced. Notable warships built at the yard included the Japanese battleship ASAHI, the British battleships HINDUSTAN, AFRICA, and VALIANT (QE class), and the battlecruisers TIGER, REPULSE, INDEFATIGABLE, and HOOD. In 1971 Browns was sold to Marathon Oil. The shipyard remained in service to the North Sea oil industry before being closed by a successor company; the site was demolished in 2002. It is now the site of Clydebank Community College; a few of the original buildings and the giant Titan crane remain in the midst of a bulldozed wasteland. The engineering arm of John Brown continues (after several bouts of acquisition) as John Brown Engineering Gas Turbines Ltd, E. Kilbride, UK.

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SS Empress of Britain [+1940]
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