A Greek Tragedy

By Derek Longly

The Londres followed many of the other ferries serving the English Channel when she was sold to Greek owners, in this instance Typaldos Lines.

This company had grown exponentially offering cruises in a variety of older ships shed by British, French, Canadian and American companies and was at its height when the Londres joined them.  However, all was to come to a sudden and dramatic end when the company's ship Heraklion, the former liner Leicestershire of the Bibby Line, which had been converted to a car ferry for the run to Crete from Piraeus, foundered during a storm and the Company were held to blame for the considerable loss of life involved.

Other ships of the Company also came to 'sticky' ends and one of these was the ex Londres now re-named Sofoclis Venizelos.  Only recently completely refurbished by Typaldos with a new bow she looked immaculate when she lay at Piraeus shortly after entering service as shown in the first photo.

However, tragedy overcame her only a short while later when she was completely destroyed by fire and the second photo depicts her sad wreck after she had been put ashore.  Although it was not unknown for the Greeks to salve a wreck and put it back into service, in the case of the Sofoclis Venizelos she was declared a total loss and was broken up.

Photo:Sofoclis Venizelos after rebuilding from Londres

Sofoclis Venizelos after rebuilding from Londres

Derek Longly collection

Photo:Burned out wreck of Sofoclis Venizelos

Burned out wreck of Sofoclis Venizelos

Derek Longly collection

This page was added by Derek Longly on 10/06/2011.
Comments about this page

I have just discovered that you have put a link from my pages about the Londres when in service from Newhaven to this page to bring that story to its conclusion. Many thanks for doing that. Derek

By Derek Longly
On 03/11/2012

Where do old British ships go to ''Die''?...I watched some films of Ship breaker's yards in Chittagong, Bangladesh where safety is zero for the Workers..It is upsetting to see still photos of women serving piles of Asbestos, and of course the cutting of tons of steel.... where younger men ''learn on the job'' with fatal consequences.
Ship breakers yards over there have zero respect for the Workers..PPE?...A grimy headscarf over the mouth. 
One hopes that British ships are not sent so far away, but , much like broken down Hunters in 19th century England that were sold to Day Cab work, then Night can work as they further declined, older British Ferries are sent to Greece ''to be used up''..

By Catherine Mackenzie
On 28/06/2020

If you're already a registered user of this site, please login using the form on the left-hand side of this page.