Australia Star

by Captain Sandy Kinghorn

The first Australia Star was 11,122grt and built in 1935. On 15th June 1964 she arrived at Faslane to be broken up by Shipbreaking Industries.
The first Australia Star was 11,122grt and built in 1935. On 15th June 1964 she arrived at Faslane to be broken up by Shipbreaking Industries.

When Australia Star went to Faslane in Scotland for breaking up in 1964 after almost thirty years of sterling service, her name replacement was launched the following year by Austin Pickersgill Ltd., at Southwick, Sunderland. Blue Star were not into heavy lifting until 1962 when a sudden need arose for a ship able to lift undivided pieces of machinery heavier than the lifting capabilities of shore cranes at either end of the service. A Clan Liner had to be chartered and not only got the heavy lift but all the other cargo which went with it, right down to the nuts, bolts and fuse wire. As such lifts were at that time increasingly being built in Britain for export, Blue Star realised that this was too good an opportunity to miss, so they converted the 1942 built South Africa Star, an ex ‘Woolworth’ aircraft carrier built with many others in the US to protect North Atlantic convoys at a time when allied air protection did not quite cover their vital routes.

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