Phil Mason: The Merchant Navy – History, Superstitions & Cemetery

Posted on: Mon 1 Oct 2018

When the United Kingdom entered the Second World War, King George VI issued the following message to the Merchant Navy,

Yours is a task no less essential to my people’s experience than that allotted to the Navy, Army and Air Force. Upon you the Nation depends for much of its foodstuffs and raw materials and for the transport of its troops overseas.’

It’s been a long and proud history of service for our Merchant Navy. The Atlantic Convoy Memorial; the sinking of the Australian Hospital Ship Centaur off the coast of Queensland during WW2; Indigenous enlistees during WW2; sailors’ superstitions; the significance of the Cheltenham Cemetery. Phil Mason, President of  The Merchant Navy Association of SA, chats about these subjects and more today.

Phil Mason:  The Centaur; Mariners’ superstitions; WW2 Dutch ships in Australia;  Cheltenham Cemetery; 3,000 Indigenous enlistees to the Merchant Navy in WW2; the MN Memorial at Port Adelaide; Victor Harbour & Goolwa & Gawler RSL Memorial plaques.

Phil Mason: The Atlantic Convoy Memorial; The Merchant Navy Medal – issued by the Russians.

Main Picture: The Australian Merchant Navy Badge,  provided by Phil Mason and used with the MN Association SA’s permission.  Plus the Sinking of the Linda Blanche out of Liverpool by Willy Stower.  A German depiction of the attack of a U-boat on the Linda Blanche during WWI, showing the disembarkation of passengers from the stricken vessel – a procedure not always done in practice. The Linda Blanche was sunk on 30 January 1915 by U-21 under the command of Kapitän-Leutnant Hersing. This picture is sourced from Wikipedia


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