Author Topic: Cunard before QE2  (Read 10927 times)

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Offline Ron Baxter

Re: Cunard before QE2
« Reply #120 on: Sep 13, 2016, 07:06 PM »
In Southampton you often saw Rolls Royces and Bentleys being delivered for shipment, they arrived at the quayside in individual pantechnicons, a sort of furniture van.  They were loving wrapped, they had thick fabric sticky tape, very similar to the material elastoplasts were made of, all over their famous grills, door handles, anywhere there was chrome.  The coach work was sprayed with a protective wax, the leather interiors were covered in thick, grey, wrapping paper secured with gummed paper tape, the type they used on window panes during the war.  The engines were never started, the vehicles were rolled out of the back of their carrier on a pair of ramps then the dockworkers manoeuvred them onto a lifting frame, this entailed opening the driver's door and using the steering wheel.  I well remember the beautiful smell of the leather interiors.  The cars were hoisted up and dropped into the forward hold, next stop, New York.  This loading took place by the front end of the Ocean Terminal and returning to the ship one evening after a night out, myself and a couple of the lads came upon the most wonderful vintage motor car that was awaiting shipment.  A brass plaque on the dash board told us it was a 1909 Cadillac, it was a lovely maroon colour, with black, deep buttoned, upholstery, I didn't think Cadillacs went back that far but apparently they did, we gave the dockers a hand to push the car on to the lifting frame, it was worth it just to get to feel the quality of the upholstery.  Before it was lifted away we all used our scarves to polish along the top of the back seat where we had placed our hands to push.

Ron B.

Offline Ron Baxter

Re: Cunard before QE2
« Reply #121 on: Sep 21, 2016, 07:45 PM »
There was a large motor yacht that was often berthed quite close to the Ocean Terminal, it was named “Shemara” and was owned by Sir Bernard and Lady Docker.  In today's parlance these two would have been “A List Celebrities”, Sir Bernard was a well to do Company Director, his Wife, Lady Norah could be a bit of a handful, she was always upsetting somebody or other with her outrageous antics, her speciality seemed to be getting banned from places.  She was banned from the Casino at Monte Carlo and eventually fell out with the government of Monaco.  Sir Bernard was a boss of Daimler motors, a prestigious motor company at the time, he always drove a Daimler but his cars had the sort of extras that were way beyond the means of the average motorist.  He liked his chrome work to be gold plated.  They used to hoist their car on to the fore deck of the yacht, secure it, then head off to the Mediterranean, hopefully to seek out a country that her Ladyship hadn't upset.  They travelled on the QE one trip and she caused a scene in the first class dining salon after accusing Commodore Mc.Clean of being a communist.  Apparently whilst attending a reception in the Commodore's cabin, she had spotted a photograph of President Tito of Yugoslavia.  Tito had travelled over with us some time earlier and had probably left the photo as a memento.  It turned out Lady D. had been banned from Yugoslavia and was still seething. ::)

Ron B.

Offline Twynkle

Re: Cunard before QE2
« Reply #122 on: Sep 22, 2016, 12:26 AM »
Oh! Ron - What a commotion this must have caused
I remember tales of "The v well-heeled Dockers" (Liverpool and Sir Bernard come to mind, unfortunately I can't remember the details) In a former life wasn't Lady D a night club hostess? The thing I remember most was the way most 'lesser mortals' were disregarded by her ladyship....
Daimlers then were regarded as 'swish' - and linked with rather a down-market clientele - in the 1950s I seem to remember that was the "Rolls and Bents" which were owned by the genuine rather more sophisticated car-lovers that made heads turn?!  ;)  (Having spent childhood years underneath said cars, watching oil dripping into enamel bowls, and cleaning huge spark plugs - these were my idea of great childs play!)
Our Doc had an Alvis, he used to envy anyone with a Red RR on the bonnet! ;)
Seem to be a little off topic here...ooops - Sorry!

To get back to your lovely ship - did you work on Queen Mary too?
 
 


 
QE2 has been waiting alongside in Dubai for very nearly  whole years... she seriously needs to be earning her keep....

Offline Ron Baxter

Re: Cunard before QE2
« Reply #123 on: Sep 23, 2016, 09:23 PM »
Hi Twynk,

Glad you remembered Lady Docker, apparently she started out as a Dance Hostess at the Cafe de Paris, rubbing shoulders with the Upper Set and eventually landing herself a rich Husband, when he passed away she found another equally well heeled replacement and upon his demise latched on to Bernard Docker, he supplied her with the gold plated Daimlers.  I sat waiting my turn in the First Class Barber's Salon and he was in the chair getting a trim, that must have been on the trip when Lady D. upset the Skipper.  He seemed pleasant enough, the barbers all said he was real Gent, how the hell he put up with her and some of her antics I don't know.

Did I sail on the QM?, no,…..... but I did one watch in her Auxillary Boiler Room.  In June'62 my Wife, because of illness in her family, decided she would return to Barrow.  I thought I'd take the opportunity to try cruising so I put in a request for a transfer and ended up on the QM.  As I pointed out in an earlier post, National Service was no longer an issue, lads were leaving tag lag so I decided to call it quits myself and head back home to Barrow.  A decision, I must admit, I regretted many times over the years.  The Queens went cruising not long after that but I don't think they were very successful. :(

Ron B.

Offline Ron Baxter

Re: Cunard before QE2
« Reply #124 on: Oct 01, 2016, 07:36 PM »
Some of the senior engineers had motor cars and one or two of the more junior lads, they stored them with a company which I think was called, “Andrews”, they had a garage in the old continental section of the docks.  One of my contemporaries, a chap from Nottingham named Johnny Trickett, brought his motor car down with him at one time, it was an old Riley, the type of vehicle that is a collectors item nowadays, it had a polished brass radiator and John thought the world of it.  He took a group of us for a run out into the New Forest and we visited a few way-side inns, on the way back it was raining rather hard and the floor of the car had rusted away in places, when he ran through a puddle we all got soaked, needless to say there were lots of good natured but derisory remarks flying about and John was not very pleased.  When we got back to the ship he swore we would never ride in his car again and we never did.  Johnny Burgess, one of the senior seconds, had a new Triumph Herald, he gave me a lift home whenever we were on watch together during the lay-ups and this is when the thought of owning a motor car began to germinate, in the past I walked or caught a bus, a lift in a car was real time saver, all I had to do was learn how to drive.  There was a lad on watch with me during one of the lay-ups, he was my junior actually and he had a 3 litre Austin Healey sports car, powder blue with cream trim, a real head turner, when you got in it you were more or less lying on the ground, getting in and out of it was a nightmare, I was twenty two years old and could I hell get the hang of it.  My ship-mate used to slip in behind the wheel like a snake, I was like a stranded turtle.  We used to come down from the King George dry dock through the new docks, along Herbert Walker Way, it was dead straight and in the early morning there was very little traffic about, the speedometer needle would be hovering around the hundred mark before we had to rapidly reduce speed at the dock gate.  Another of the engineers had a motor bike, a Triumph Thunderbird, he gave me a lift home from the Ocean Terminal one rather wet night when we came off watch at midnight.  The journey was just a blurr, I climbed onto the pillion seat clutching my holdall, the next thing I knew we were hurtling towards the dock gate,  you could drive up the High St. in those days, the Bar Gate stood on it's own roundabout right in the middle. I remember the bike lurching to the left followed quickly by a lurch to the right then again to the left as we negotiated the historic landmark at a fair lick.  I think I was stood outside my flat, alone, in the dark, about five minutes after leaving the ship, the Thunderbird was just a rumble, audible in the distance.  We engineers were jealous of the stewards, they all seemed to have nice cars waiting for them in Southampton but the best car of all belonged to one of the ship's real characters, a fireman who went by the name of “Swede”.  Swede was a hippie before hippies became fashionable, his appearance and his personal freshness left a lot to be desired but he owned a brand new Ford “Zodiac”, maroon with grey trim, white walled tyres, gleaming chrome work, the lot, if you were going on leave you could hire the vehicle for a fee but it had to be back on the quay-side ready for him when we came in to port, that's how he financed it.  In Southampton one evening Swede swung his beautiful motor car onto a petrol station fore-court and put half a gallon of petrol in the tank.  The petrol station owner kept him talking whilst they sent for the police.

  “The Esso sign means Happy Motoring” :D

 Ron B.   



 

Offline Isabelle Prondzynski

Re: Cunard before QE2
« Reply #125 on: Oct 06, 2016, 11:24 PM »
A lovely little video on the RTE News Facebook page this evening :

https://www.facebook.com/rtenews/videos/1427857370576594/

So far, I have not managed to find it on their "normal" website, so it will presumably disappear within Facebook as happens there...

Quote from: RTE News
Fishermen have landed the catch of a lifetime off West Cork where a rare 19th century bowl was discovered during a trawl off Dursey Island.

The bowl bearing the stamp of the Cunard Steamship Company is - remarkably- intact, having rested on the seabed for over 120 years.

Offline Ron Baxter

Re: Cunard before QE2
« Reply #126 on: Apr 18, 2017, 07:58 PM »
I suddenly feel able to explain my absence since October last, the truth is I've collided with life's harbour wall.  I was diagnosed with bowel cancer and my world turned upside down.  I had major surgery in October which was a complete success, however they found a small secondary cancer in my liver that at first they thought they could just keep an eye and see how things went.  I picked up a winter bug that really laid me low, got a bad chest infection which they X-rayed straight away to check for anything ominous, they threw in a CT scan for go measure and unfortunately found the one in my liver was on the move.  I have just started a course of “Chemo.” so, being as how i'm going to be a bit of a prisoner and somehow my communication lights have come back on, I might just be able to find a few more 1960 Cunard/New York yarns that may be of interest.  Over and out Ron B.  :)  :)

Offline Lynda Bradford

Re: Cunard before QE2
« Reply #127 on: Apr 18, 2017, 08:07 PM »
Ron, I did wonder why you had not posted for a while.  So sorry to hear that you have been through so much since last October and you still have to climb the "Chemo" hill.  I am sure you will fight this and glad you have come back on the forum to share more stories.

Take care!
I am proud to be involved with planning QE2's 50 year conference in September 2017 in Clydebank
www.qe2event.com

Offline cunardqueen

Re: Cunard before QE2
« Reply #128 on: Apr 18, 2017, 08:10 PM »
Good luck with the Chemo, and do keep these stories coming, they provide a rare insight to the good old days !
From the moment you first glimpsed the Queen,
 you just knew you were in for a very special time ahead.!

Offline Rob Lightbody

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Re: Cunard before QE2
« Reply #129 on: Apr 18, 2017, 08:42 PM »
I suddenly feel able to explain my absence since October last, the truth is I've collided with life's harbour wall.  I was diagnosed with bowel cancer and my world turned upside down.  I had major surgery in October which was a complete success, however they found a small secondary cancer in my liver that at first they thought they could just keep an eye and see how things went.  I picked up a winter bug that really laid me low, got a bad chest infection which they X-rayed straight away to check for anything ominous, they threw in a CT scan for go measure and unfortunately found the one in my liver was on the move.  I have just started a course of “Chemo.” so, being as how i'm going to be a bit of a prisoner and somehow my communication lights have come back on, I might just be able to find a few more 1960 Cunard/New York yarns that may be of interest.  Over and out Ron B.  :)  :)

Ron, thanks for posting.  Sorry you've been having such a very tough time, but very glad indeed to see you back here.  I love your contributions, as do the many others who read them. 

Take care,

- Rob
Passionate about QE2 for over 30 years.

Offline Isabelle Prondzynski

Re: Cunard before QE2
« Reply #130 on: Apr 18, 2017, 09:18 PM »
Sorry to hear your news, Ron, and all good wishes for your treatment. I hope that we can give you a bit of encouragement now and again, from here...

Thank you for coming back, and looking forward to more of your memories :) .

Offline Peter Mugridge

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Re: Cunard before QE2
« Reply #131 on: Apr 18, 2017, 09:19 PM »
Oh blimey - hope they can sort that out in a positive way; do please keep the stories coming in the meantime as far as you can in between your treatments.
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Offline June Ingram

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Re: Cunard before QE2
« Reply #132 on: Apr 19, 2017, 03:03 AM »
Ron - Every good wish to you as you undergo treatments.  Please do keep the stories coming.
QE2 - the ship for all of time, a ship of timeless beauty !

Offline Ron Baxter

Re: Cunard before QE2
« Reply #133 on: Apr 20, 2017, 07:55 PM »
WOW!, I'm overwhelmed, Thank you all for your extremely kind words of support, much appreciated at this moment in time.
Stay tuned, I'll find something to write about the old days with Cunard.
Ron B.

Offline CasinoChris

Re: Cunard before QE2
« Reply #134 on: Apr 24, 2017, 11:44 PM »
Hi Ron,
thanks for posting such wonderful recollections. Hope all goes well with the Chemo!
Best Regards
Chris Thompson

Offline Ron Baxter

Re: Cunard before QE2
« Reply #135 on: Apr 26, 2017, 08:10 PM »
I was watching a documentary recently in which the Naval Architect who designed the QM2,(The one with the Gold “Blue Peter” badge) was talking about hull design, particularly the hull required to meet the conditions on the North Atlantic.  He said for the kind of speed they were hoping to maintain, a hull would need to be sleek but most of all strong.  I have stood under the bow of the old Queen Elizabeth when she was in dry dock, sleek and shapely it was, most certainly and the whole vessel bristled with “Clydeside  built“ strength.  In some other documentary, I watched somewhere, they were talking about ocean wave patterns and their formation.  They said that in the North Atlantic the waves heading east, in certain condition, could form into very regular patterns of steep peaks followed by deep troughs.  We used to run into these waves now and again and it was here the “Lizzie” would, sometimes, perform a manoeuvre that, the very thought of, still makes me shudder all these years on.

I first experienced this phenomenon when I was on watch in the Aft engine room, I was Lub. Oil Engineer, taking care of the Lubrication systems of the two aft engines.  We were outward bound well clear of the English coast, the weather was it's usual grumpy self.  She was pitching a bit and that generally made you feel uncomfortable, I wasn't a good sailor but I was never as bad as some of the poor devils I saw suffering when things got rough.  Outward bound the ship pitched, homeward she rolled.  Rolling could be controlled somewhat with the deployment of the Stabilizers, the “Fins” as we knew them but when she was pitching they stayed firmly housed.  We were punching along at a fair lick, 28/29 knots and you could feel the occasional shock wave and shudder as she ran into the oncoming sea.  Suddenly the whole engine room seemed to lift upwards at a rather steep angle and then it all dropped away as if we had just fallen of whatever had lifted us up, the engine room was now pointing directly down, she lurched to starboard as something big hit the port side and landed in what must have been the bottom of a trough.  The whole ship shook, the pipe work was bouncing, there dust and muck dropping down from high above us plus anything that happened to loose, I do recall a tin bucket and brush coming clattering down and landing on the gear-casing.  Add to this mayhem the Lub. Oil alarms going off, they had a really shrill sound, they were telling me they were struggling to maintain suction and what made this even more alarming there was a system by which, in the event of an oil pressure failure, the main stop valve supplying steam to the turbines would close rather rapidly and our six boilers would be lumbered with steam we no longer required and you didn't want that when you were “Full Away”.  Meanwhile the ship was still recovering, it felt like we were skidding and shimmying at the same time.  By now the main telegraphs were clanging, the bridge requesting a reduction in engine revs, we dropped back from 175rpm to 100rpm, followed not long after with a reduction to 80rpm.  I remember one time we ended up at 40rpm on the aft engines only.  It never lasted too long, as soon as there was any sign of a bit better weather we were off.  RMS Queen Elizabeth had a schedule to maintain.

Off watch the “Shimmy” was no better, we had no sooner sat down to lunch in the mess one day, again the weather was a bit rough, the tables had their wooden sides up to stop things bouncing off and we hit a beauty, someone said, “Here we go”.  The lads sat opposite me at the table were sudden looking down at me, then came the drop and a crashing sound followed by some rich language coming out of the galley. A steward who was delivering soup orders lost his footing as he came through the door into the mess and dropped everything he'd been carrying.  The little wooden sides weren't much use either quite a bit of crockery and cruet sets ended up all over the deck.  One thing I couldn't help but notice were the looks of apprehension on the faces of those present.  I never liked it when you were in your bunk fast asleep and she hit one, you woke with a start then experienced the shimmy lying on your back, you could just catch the sounds of the alarms going off in the engine room and the clang of the telegraphs requesting reductions in revs.  You lay awake waiting to see of the call out alarm might request all hands to their machinery spaces but there was usually enough engineers down below to handle most situations. 
For the full experience of a shimmy No1. Boiler room was the place to be.  This was the furthest for'd of the machinery spaces, here you really felt the ship heave and drop and the sounds from outside were more audible.  It wasn't a popular watch position with the lads especially in the winter months.  A fresh watch list was posted on the notice board prior to each outward run, we would check to see what we had landed, who we would be working with?, who would we relieve and be relieved by?(There were one or two sleepy heads you could do without), Second Engineer?, Walking Second?( Jimmy Jangler usually caused a few gasps of dismay).  No1 Boiler room always caused the biggest.  Our accommodation was high up on Sun Deck, to reach the machinery spaces there were two lifts that took you down to the “Working Alleyway” level this was the ship's main artery, all the machinery spaces were on one side of it, all the galleys etc. were on the other, it was a very busy place during the day but not so at Midnight, or four in the morning when the watches changed.  At any of these times you had the place to yourself, you would turn and head for'd, the alleyway stretched before you, the shape of the ship was distinctly visible, it actually curved as it headed towards the bow and it was on the move. Looking dead ahead you could see front lifting gently, moving to starboard then dropping down before coming to port and then back up, a complete circle, “Cork screwing”.  Sometimes it was really rough and the deck heaved beneath your feet and you felt the forces of gravity as your legs fell away on the downward stroke then rose up trying to shove your legs back into your body, hanging on to the safety rail became the best option.  The smell of nausea was in the air and visible all over the deck in some places.  You entered the Boiler room through the top air lock, the man you were relieving would no doubt hear the door rattle and know his ordeal was almost over,  You were greeted by a wall of intense heat off the top of the boiler then you dropped down the ladder onto bottom level.  We had a little area where we had a rigged up a seat and you could sit and get your shoulders between the pipes there and jamb your back against the bulkhead, you could see the water level sight glasses and any other thing of importance and just ride it out.  I remember one night the face of the Manchester lad I was relieving looking up me as I came down the ladder, he had that little tinge of green across his cheeks, obviously he'd been very sick, he reeked of vomit.  He said, pathetically,“Ronnie Baxter you're an ugly bugger from Barrow-in-Furness but am I bloody glad to see you tonight”.  He extricated himself from behind the pipework and dragged himself off up the ladder, to his bunk, to die.  I had a quick look around the job had a word with my firemen, both of who were not weathering well, then jambed myself in the command position to see my watch through. When the big waves came and they did, sitting against the bulkhead you had your back to the bow so you experienced the whole business backwards, the noise was more pronounced, some maritime, mythological Titan was hitting the hull with a huge hammer, you were getting the shock waves almost immediately and at full power.  Being caught standing between the two boilers was even worse, the lift seemed greater the drop was bone shattering, the boilers shook terrible on their mounts, the pipework shook and rattled, the metal floor plates, which were not secured, lifted slightly and then clattered back into position adding to the cacophony.   The cloud of dust that came floating down was heavy laden with soot and no doubt asbestos dust off the lagging. I remember thinking to myself one time “Hang on, I've got two big kettles here full of boiling water, it's bad enough keeping their water levels stable on moderate seas, I've got six fires on either side of me belching flames into each boiler producing super heated steam and something is trying to wrench the pipework carrying it to the turbines asunder,  I can do without all this”.  Then the Engine room telegraph tells me they are going to slow down, I answer it and it's back to reality, the fireman knocks of a couple of fires and things gradually calm down, that is until next time.

Hope that's not too long, I fear I may have gone on a bit trying to catch up.  I've come to the to the conclusion I might be mentally scarred. :-\

Ron B. 

     
     

Offline Isabelle Prondzynski

Re: Cunard before QE2
« Reply #136 on: Apr 26, 2017, 09:41 PM »
Ron, so glad you're back! I could listen to your stories for hours... :) .

You give a great sense of place, right down to the smell, and even though I have very little idea of a ship's engine room, I can in my own way picture the scene, hear the clatter (and the silence) and feel the heat as well as the dust particles descending.

Probably the passengers, who are themselves hanging on for dear life, have no idea of what the crew has to go through on occasions like this. They just trust the Queen Elizabeth to be the safest ship on the Atlantic and devote their attention to their own unstable surroundings and their nausea...

I wonder whether the scene was similar on QE2 when she hit this type of wave... did she too do the "shimmy"?

Offline Clydebuilt1971

Re: Cunard before QE2
« Reply #137 on: Apr 27, 2017, 01:14 PM »
Ron,

Welcome back sir - love your recollections from those days - keep em comin!!

Gav

Offline June Ingram

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Re: Cunard before QE2
« Reply #138 on: Apr 27, 2017, 06:09 PM »
Thank you, Ron, and welcome back !  Not only are your memories wonderful to read but you write with such description that one feels themselves in the engine room experiencing what you are describing ! 

Just think of the strength of the ship to endure this kind of punishment and just think of your strength and the strength of all those working far below in the ship !

Please keep telling us more ! 

June 
QE2 - the ship for all of time, a ship of timeless beauty !

Offline Ron Baxter

Re: Cunard before QE2
« Reply #139 on: Jun 14, 2017, 03:31 PM »
Hello all, i'm not sure if my Grandad (Ron) spoke much about his 'IT girl' granddaughter? But here i am. As many of you may already know, Ron has suffered a short, but extremely tough battle with cancer, and unfortunately passed away peacefully at home on Monday 12th June. Our family is heartbroken, but we are a strong bunch, and we will carry on, just as Grandad always did.

I am so glad i managed to turn my 'technophobe' grandad into a high tech 'Gdad' (as he used to call himself as he signed off his texts!)... I know just how much he enjoyed sitting down at his desk and typing away the years of memories to share with you, and also how much your words of encouragement meant to him during his recent battle. I will sorely miss the IT lessons, the road trips together in my little car and the laughter we always shared. I hope i see the world as my Grandad did.

'I haven't always thought much about the things that you had seen, as to me you were just Grandad, and i gave no thought to who you had been, but now i look back in love, your life from start to end, and i'm so proud to have known you as my Grandad, and my best friend.'

Offline Isabelle Prondzynski

Re: Cunard before QE2
« Reply #140 on: Jun 14, 2017, 03:57 PM »
Dear Granddaughter, we are so very sorry to read about your loss and that of your family and friends... and our loss too. Your Grandad was such a positive person, full of energy and good humour, and I am sure you are missing him greatly, particularly as you were so close to him. I am glad to read that he passed away peacefully at home; I am sure this is what he would have wished in the circumstances.

Your Gdad did a wonderful thing for us, sharing such vivid and personal memories here -- I could have read them for hours with the same enjoyment. There are not many people around now (particularly with the necessary IT skills) who could write about their adventures on these splendid historical ships.

Please pass our sympathy and greetings to all, and please convey how much we appreciated his presence here among us. We too shall miss him greatly.

You did a wonderful thing in making contact and letting us know about Ron Baxter's passing -- thank you so much. You will be welcome here any time yourself.

Offline cunardqueen

Re: Cunard before QE2
« Reply #141 on: Jun 14, 2017, 06:42 PM »
Sorry to hear of your great loss. The stories and tales told by your Grandfather kept us all spell bound on here. Its rare we have the chance to hear first hand of the good old days and in such detail, and we shall miss these.

I hope you can take some comfort from the expressions of Sympathy on here for a person we never really knew in person, But for a person with a great online presence . As is the nature with forums, there will be a great many more people who will have read Rons stories and for whatever reason wont comment, so there is perhaps no real way of knowing who were fortunate to read such tales. But like them, l know we will have all enjoyed "being there" from his descriptions .

Along with Isabelle, Thanks for taking the time to let us know and sharing your sad news.
May you find some comfort from, complete strangers, who for different reasons ,share your loss.   
From the moment you first glimpsed the Queen,
 you just knew you were in for a very special time ahead.!

Offline Bob van Leeuwen

Re: Cunard before QE2
« Reply #142 on: Jun 14, 2017, 06:46 PM »
  I really have nothing more to add to Isabelle post, other then to thank you personally for helping your grandad showing him around the modern technologies that are available to us today.


Despite the fact that The Netherlands have been supported for a long time by the revenue from the seas I have so far not discovered any personal connection to the seas so every time I read your grandad stories I read them with a lot of joy, and you could tell from his posts that he enjoyed writing them up for all of to read.

Offline Lynda Bradford

Re: Cunard before QE2
« Reply #143 on: Jun 15, 2017, 12:46 PM »
To Ron's granddaughter, my thoughts are with you and your family at this sad time.  I was to sorry to hear that Ron had passed away but glad that his passing was a peaceful one. 

Many people loved reading your grandfather's stories on the forum and it is good to know that his memories will live on and be read by many more people, long after his death. 
I am proud to be involved with planning QE2's 50 year conference in September 2017 in Clydebank
www.qe2event.com

Offline Ron Baxter

Re: Cunard before QE2
« Reply #144 on: Jun 15, 2017, 04:22 PM »
Thank you all for your lovely comments and thoughts, they are much appreciated. It is lovely to hear how greatly his stories were enjoyed. I'm sure he would say your heartfelt comments were 'bloody wonderful!'.

Today would've been Ron's 79th Birthday. I hope he is enjoying a whisky... and more than likely doing a bit of DIY handywork, Grandad could fix anything.

Lucy x

Offline June Ingram

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Re: Cunard before QE2
« Reply #145 on: Jun 15, 2017, 05:05 PM »
I was very saddened to learn of Ron's passing.  Even though I never met him in person, your Granfather's stories and his responses to our replies made it seem as if we had met and indeed were good friends.

It was very special to read first hand of his experiences and they will indeed be here on The Forum for all to read in the future.

My condolences and sincere sympathy to you and your family.
QE2 - the ship for all of time, a ship of timeless beauty !

Offline Alan Snelson

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Re: Cunard before QE2
« Reply #146 on: Jun 15, 2017, 05:50 PM »
So very sad to hear that Ron is no longer with us but a happy thought is that his stories and recollections are still here for us and future forum members to enjoy.

I really enjoyed reading Ron's adventures, his style of narrative was such a joy to read and kept me enthralled to the end and always left me wanting more.

He will be sorely missed.
Don't just be part of her past, be part of her history!

Offline Rob Lightbody

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Re: Cunard before QE2
« Reply #147 on: Jun 15, 2017, 06:12 PM »
Thank you all for your lovely comments and thoughts, they are much appreciated. It is lovely to hear how greatly his stories were enjoyed. I'm sure he would say your heartfelt comments were 'bloody wonderful!'.

Today would've been Ron's 79th Birthday. I hope he is enjoying a whisky... and more than likely doing a bit of DIY handywork, Grandad could fix anything.

Lucy x

Thank you Lucy.  Its so sad to hear of Ron's passing, but your message was a lovely way to end his stories here, that we enjoyed so much.

Do you have a nice photo of Ron that you could share with us?

And I personally commit to keeping Ron's stories online for as long into the future as is possible, for everyone to enjoy.
Passionate about QE2 for over 30 years.

Offline Twynkle

Re: Cunard before QE2
« Reply #148 on: Jun 15, 2017, 11:25 PM »
Hello Lucy, Ron's special IT Girl,

Firstly, a very sincere Thank You for letting us know of your very sad news of Ron B.
A good grandfather is extra-special - and you'll see from his posts, that he was really impressed by his IT Girl.

He contributed so much about life at sea in his topic 'Cunard before QE2'.
His informative and graphic descriptions were at times incredibly funny, and doubtless many here, and I, like you, will miss him greatly.

With warmest regards to you and your family,

Rosie

QE2 has been waiting alongside in Dubai for very nearly  whole years... she seriously needs to be earning her keep....

Offline Clydebuilt1971

Re: Cunard before QE2
« Reply #149 on: Jul 07, 2017, 01:29 PM »
Hello all, i'm not sure if my Grandad (Ron) spoke much about his 'IT girl' granddaughter? But here i am. As many of you may already know, Ron has suffered a short, but extremely tough battle with cancer, and unfortunately passed away peacefully at home on Monday 12th June. Our family is heartbroken, but we are a strong bunch, and we will carry on, just as Grandad always did.

I am so glad i managed to turn my 'technophobe' grandad into a high tech 'Gdad' (as he used to call himself as he signed off his texts!)... I know just how much he enjoyed sitting down at his desk and typing away the years of memories to share with you, and also how much your words of encouragement meant to him during his recent battle. I will sorely miss the IT lessons, the road trips together in my little car and the laughter we always shared. I hope i see the world as my Grandad did.

'I haven't always thought much about the things that you had seen, as to me you were just Grandad, and i gave no thought to who you had been, but now i look back in love, your life from start to end, and i'm so proud to have known you as my Grandad, and my best friend.'

Hey Lucy,

I don't know if you'll ever read this - but gone is never forgotten. As I've said on here before, after a sunset there is always a new dawn. Your Grandad will be telling his stories about his times with you to some other people he has met.

I loved reading your Grandad's stories - I could almost visualise what he was talking about and it made it all the more special as he was sharing his own personal recollections of working at sea on one of the most famous vessels in the world!

Take Care and follow your dreams....

Gav


 

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