british SS Thomas Walton [+1939]
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nationality british
purpose transport
type cargo ship
propulsion steam
date built 1917
is nickname no
weight (tons) 4460  grt
dimensions 115.9 x 15.9 x 7.9 m
material steel
engine triple expansion engine
power 434  n.h.p.
speed 10  knots
yard no. 888
call sign
about the loss
cause lost torpedo
date lost 07/12/1939  [dd/mm/yyyy]
casualties  max.13rank: 647
about people
William Gray & Co., Ltd., West Hartlepool (Sunderland)
engine by
Central Marine Engineering Works Ltd., Hartlepool
last owner
[1]Coronation Steamship Co. Ltd., Cardiff
SS Thomas Walton [+1939]
period 1932 ~ 1939
call sign: 
prev. owners
[2]Hinde W. E. & Co - McNeil, Hinde & Co., Cardiff
SS Portgwarra
period 1923 ~ 1932
[3]Jenkins Bros., Cardiff
SS Anglesea
period 1917 ~ 1923
captain Townsend, Percy Dudley
no. of crew 44
about the wreck
depth (m.) 350 max. / -- min. (m)
war grave
entered by Allen Tony
entered 19/03/2008
last update Vleggeert Nico
last update 31/12/2012
[1] Lettens Jan31/07/2012
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  Hydrographic Service UK  
Allen Tony19/03/2008Thomas Walton SS was a British Cargo Steamer of 4,460 tons built in1917 by W. Gray & Co, West Hartlepool for the Coronation Steamship Co Ltd (Frank S. Dawson Ltd), Cardiff. Built as Anglesea, 1922 renamed Portgwarra, 1932 renamed Thomas Walton. On the 7th December 1939 when on route from Port Talbot - Narvik in ballast she was torpedoed by German submarine U-38 and sunk inside Norwegian territorial waters south of Svolvaer.

The German steam merchant Sebu, picked up the master and 30 crew members and landed them at Bodo, Norway.
Lettens Jan28/08/2008UK hydro member
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 UK Hydrographic Office

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About Builders
 William Gray & Co., Ltd., West Hartlepool (Sunderland)
William Gray and Company of Central Marine Engineering Works, West Hartlepool, was a shipbuilding firm from 1874-1963. They were the largest firm of shipbuilders in the Hartlepools and also lasted longer than any other local shipbuilding firm. For a hundred years the company ensured the towns’ prosperity by giving jobs to thousands of local people.

William Gray and Co always maintained its reputation for being in the vanguard of technological and technical innovation. The company regularly topped the output for British shipyards in the last decade of the nineteenth and early 20th century. Between 1883 and 1887 the yard expanded through the acquisition of one ten acre site (Central) and a three berth shipyard (Jackson).

Towards the end of the 19th century, demand was for bigger ships which could carry more cargo. This led to the opening, in 1887, of another Gray shipyard at the end of the Central Dock. In 1890 William Gray was knighted. He was active in the civil life of Hartlepool having been the first mayor of West Hartlepool among many other achievements.

In 1896 Matthew Gray died in 1896, followed two years later by both Sir William Gray, and Thomas Mudd. This left Sir William’s younger son, William Cresswell Gray, as Chairman of the company. In 1898 Sir William Gray died. His surviving son William Cresswell Gray became director of the yards.

During WWI output was 30 cargo-liners and tramps built to private order, 13 vessels built to Admiralty order and 30 standard "WAR" tramps built for the Shipping Controller. King George V and Queen Mary visited the yard to boost morale. The yard had a 100-ton hammer head crane which was a Hartlepool landmark until it was demolished in the 1960s.

The Company went into voluntary liquidation in 1962. The various yards were either acquired, auctioned or demolished in 1963.

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Central Marine Engineering Works Ltd., Hartlepool
Central Marine Engine Works of West Hartlepool and Hartlepool
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SS Thomas Walton [+1939]
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