Retired Section Swansea Docks


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Collapse of the Cambrian Dry Dock Gates in 1945
Hull, engine and boiler of TID Tug damaged when the lock gates were carried away during a high tide on the 4th April 1945.
( See photo and description of TID Tugs below. )  More information on  Roger Jones pages.


T.I.D. Class Tugs


The tugs in dry dock when the Cambrian gates collapsed in 1945 were the T.I.D. class tugs  40 and 41. In total, 182 T.I.D. class tugs were constructed between 1943 and 1946 to replace tugs lost to enemy action during World War II. Built to a design by Richard Dunston Ltd., the T.I.D. tugs had a length of 65’ and a beam of 17’, with a draught of around 6’ on an even keel. The meaning of the abbreviation ‘T.I.D.’ seems to have been lost in the mists of time, but various suggestions have been made, such as ‘Tug – Invasion Duty’, ‘Tug – In Dock’, and ‘Tug – Intermediate Design’. Does anyone have any further ideas? If so, please let us know. An example of a T.I.D class tug is shown in the picture opposite. 



South Dock Impounding Station, (now the Swansea Yacht and Sub Aqua Club)

Barrels covering the suction pipes for the impounding pumps in the bottom bar of the club

Slipway where the entrance to the Cambrian Dry Dock used to be

Recess for one of the lock gates of the former Cambrian Dry Dock

Location of the outer lock gates of the former South Dock entrance

Recess for one of the outer lock gates of the former South Dock entrance

Pictured above is trawler SA33 'Barry Castle' which sank at its moorings on the 23rd August 1949 whilst loading 60 tons of ice at the South Dock Basin, Swansea. She was refloated the following day. Built in 1942 by Cochrane & Son of Selby, the trawler was 147' long and had a GRT of 380 tons.

On the 1st November 1955, whilst trawling off Iceland, the 'Barry Castle' began to ship water and was taken in tow by the Hull trawler 'Princess Elizabeth'. Unfortunately she sank within a few hours and, out of a crew of eighteen, four men were lost as the ship foundered. The survivors, rescued by the trawlers 'Stafnes' and 'Viviana', were taken to Iceland aboard the 'Stafnes' and later flown home to Grimsby.


South Dock with the cargo shed on the right, later to become the maritime museum.

Unknown trawler. On the left a cargo shed now the Maritime Museum with three Quayside cranes.

The South Dock Jetty.

This view of Victoria Station was taken from the South Dock high level railway.

Pictured above at an unknown location is a Thornycroft Trusty 8 ton flatbed lorry belonging to Wheale Bros. transport contractors of Swansea. For many years Wheale Bros. operated from a yard on the South Dock, adjacent to the former Channel Sand & Gravel premises. The photograph dates from the early 1950's.

The above photo shows (left) Clive Davies (Centre) George Hughes and (right) Harry Porter.  Messrs Davies, Hughes & Porter were  Wheale Bros drivers. The story goes that they used some sort of trawling rig in the South Dock to catch the odd fish and retrieve items that had fallen in. As you can see, genuinely I am assured, they caught more than they bargained for on this day.

Odo Marles body repair shop in the 1970s

View of Pump House and swing bridge.( to the left Consolidated Fisheries Ice Factory is being demolished. )

The Fairwood was the last vessel to leave the South Dock on May 31st 1971. The bridge was closed and never opened again.

This photo was taken in 1971 when the South Dock was filled in.

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