Gary Davies of Maritime Photographic sent me this "jaw dropping" photograph of the MOL Triumph which dramatically conveys the sheer scale of these new ultra-large container ships.
Built by Samsung in South Korea and launched in March 2017, the ship will operate between Chinese and European ports. With a capacity of just over 20,000 TEUs, she is the first of MOL's planned fleet of six 20,000 TEU class vessels with a LOA of 400 metres and a beam of 59 metres.
The subject of containerisation started me thinking about Blue Funnel's 'Priam' (Super P) class cargo liners. I had the privilege of standing by for a time (1967) the building of the Peisander at Vickers Naval Shipyard at Walker-on-Tyne. These 'Priam' class ships were exceptional general cargo liners, but they were built too late and were to be swept away by the tide of containerisation which would be the death knell for many of the famous names in British shipping, and would forever change a way of life at sea which we had enjoyed.
Of the eight 'Priam' class ships, five were built at Vickers, one at John Brown's on the Clyde and two at Mitsubishi's Nagasaki Shipyard. The Japanese yard significantly outperformed the British yards on both price and delivery. The John Brown and Vickers Walker shipyards went out of business soon after building these ships. Sadly as these marvellous super cargo liners were being delivered, the container ships which would sweep them off the world's oceans were being planned and built.
To me, however, to sail on the Peisander was a delight and privilege. Four of the 'Priam' class were sold to CY Tung in 1979 to operate as container ships.