February 2018

Wednesday, February 28 2018

February 2018

This is a text only version of the newsletter. To view the newsletter online, click here .

This month's edition of the Heritage & Education Centre (HEC) newsletter includes an update on Project Undaunted, a 60th anniversary and an interesting story involving a chest of drawers that washed up on the shores of Nova Scotia.

Rotterdam Maritime Museum

The LRF Heritage & Education Centre (HEC) have been providing historical research and objects in preparation for an exhibition at Rotterdam Maritime Museum, scheduled to open in June 2018. The exhibition will focus on the role of Lloyd’s Register and the development of safety in the maritime world.

The Museum attracts over 200,000 visitors annually and holds one of the top three public maritime collections in the world. The exhibition also offers an opportunity for the Centre to work closely with Lloyd’s Register Group; utilising the organisation’s local Rotterdam teams for support.

The exhibition is a sign of the Centre’s commitment to developing its outreach to wider international audiences.

Undaunted Update

This month the Project Undaunted team have completed cataloguing the Canadian port boxes, and moved on to work on an exotic array of foreign ports, including Manila, Marseilles, Melbourne, Philadelphia, San Francisco, St Malo, Shanghai, Singapore and Sourabaya.   

Miles found an intriguing letter addressed to the Committee at Lloyd’s Register while completing the final box from St John, featuring an anonymous tip-off regarding shipbuilders cutting corners in Nova Scotia in 1869.   

Meanwhile Max came across documents relating to the iron sailing cargo ship Veronica, subject to a mutiny off the northeast coast of Brazil while bound for Montevideo in 1902, with the Captain and several crew murdered.  Three mutineers were subsequently found guilty.


This month Researcher & Website Content Editor Charlotte Ward has been putting together an exhibition marking the 60th anniversary of LR's magazine 100A1.  

The 100A1 was launched in 1958 as a way of sharing the "great amount of information which is received from its thousand or so Surveyors throughout the world, who are in daily touch not only with mercantile fleets of the seven seas but also, and to an increasing degree, with land installations including atomic projects, oil refineries and the more conventional power plant" (foreword from issue one written by LR Chairman Kenneth R Pelly). The series ran for 41 years and provides us with a unique insight not only into the history of LR and its work but also wider cultural, social and economic changes and the big news stories of the day. The magazine ceased publication in 1999 due to changes made within the organisation and the start of the move towards electronic publishing. 

Its title, 100A1, refers to "the classification symbols of a ship's hull and equipment in accordance with LR's Rules. '100' is assigned to ships judged suitable for sea-going service; 'A' refers to construction; '1' refers to anchoring and mooring".  

Follow us on Facebook and Twitter to find out more about 100A1 and to see articles featured across its publication history.

Interesting Enquiries 

HEC's Information Advisor Anne Crowne receives historical enquiries from the public every day. This month she has been helping a theatre company from Nova Scotia write a play about a chest of drawers.... 

A LR classed cargo vessel called Graig, built by Robert Duncan & Co Ltd and managed by Idwal Williams & Co, was completed in April 1924 and registered in Cardiff. In May 1940, on what was to be her last voyage carrying a cargo of lumber from Halifax (Nova Scotia) to Aberdeen, she became stranded on Egg Island in the thick fog. She broke in two. Remarkably all the crew were rescued but the sea battered the wreck and several items were washed away. The hull of the ship was towed to Halifax and broken up. 

One of the items that washed away was a chest of drawers which was found on the shore by a fisherman. The fisherman's family donated the chest to the local museum - Memory Lane 1940s Heritage Village ( and the local theatre group, the Eastern Shore Players, are in the process of writing a play about this chest and the ship it came from.

If you have an enquiry about a ship (or chest of drawers) follow the link to use our information service and get in touch with Anne!  

Unknown Treasures

Our archives and offices hold a diverse range of historic material, from ship plans and survey reports to treasures from Lloyd's Register's history. We also have a wonderful collection of art that hangs around the building.  

This painting depicts "The Coronation Naval Review Dispersing of the Fleets off Spithead" that took place on the 16 August 1902, marking the coronation of Edward VII. Fleet reviews are common occurrences in the reigns of monarchs and were often held to show naval power, mobilisation, to celebrate victories or to mark visits from foreign dignitaries. The coronation fleet review in 1902 was the first time that a review was held to mark a coronation in the modern era. The most recent review was held in 2005 to coincide with the Trafalgar 200 celebrations.  

Edward VII's coronation fleet review was held in the Solent. People flocked to the Isle of Wight and stood on the cliffs to watch the event. The fleet comprised of 20 battleships, 24 cruisers, 15 gunboats, 10 training ships, 32 torpedo destroyers and 7 torpedo boats. The King and Queen arrived on the Royal yacht Victoria and Albert and were met with a 21-gun salute. The Royal yacht then made its way to the merchant steamers including the Ophir that was crowded with spectators who had paid 15 guineas to be there. Illuminations had been planned for the evening but that was prevented from happening by a violent storm. 

Reference Library Easter Closure 

As the Centre is close during Easter, please note that 71 Fenchurch Street's reference library will be closed from Friday 30th March until Monday 2nd April. 

Happy Easter!

These are a few of our favourite things...

The HEC team use the historic library and archive at Fenchurch Street every day. But what are their favourite treasures? This month's edition features Researcher and Website Content Editor Charlotte Ward. 

As the newest member of the HEC team, I have spent quite a bit of time wandering around the archives and the building, taking in all the history and heritage. As I have recently graduated with a Masters degree in Naval History, with a particular passion for long-eighteenth century naval warfare, I was immediately drawn to a wonderful model of the HMS Victory that sits outside the office. As it was the Victory and her stories that sparked my interest in naval and maritime history as a child, I have chosen it as my ‘favourite thing’.

To read Charlotte's extended post, visit her blog on the HEC website.

Did You Know?

The first known Chairman of the Society for the Registry of Shipping was John Julius Angerstein (1732-1823), taking up the post in 1797.  

It is uncertain as to his parentage-it was rumoured to be Catherine II of Russia or Elizabeth of Russia (as he was born in St Petersburg). However, it is now believed that his mother was Anna of Russia (Empress of Russia and a member Romanov family) and his father Andrew Poulett Thompson, a businessman in London (as his first position was in Thompson's counting house).  

By 1770 Angerstein had established himself as an underwriter and became a leading marine insurance broker. He wanted to transform the business of Lloyd's underwriters to be more professional and efficient.  His enormous wealth allowed him to make charitable donations, set up a Lifeboat Fund and to build an art collection. This collection included works by Titian, Raphael, Rubens and Rembrandt. On his death, many of these pieces were purchased by the government on the condition that a suitable building be found for their display. This building would become the National Gallery.  

For more information, visit Angerstein's page on our website where you can also find out about the lives of our other Chairmen!