Duchess of Argyll
Built in 1906 by Wm Denny and Bros at Dumbarton.
Engines : 3 direct drive steam turbines by Denny and Co.
Dimensions : 250 ft x 30.1 ft.
593 Gross Registered tons.
CSP’s first turbine steamer, built for the Ardrossan to Arran run, replacing Duchess of Hamilton.
Achieved a speed of 21.65 knots on trial, with speed being vital on the intended service. Out of service in 1908 resulting from the CSP/GSWR co-operation pact.
For the 1910 season her open main deck forward was plated and port holes cut. Plating forward allowed her to sail on the more exposed services to Stranraer.
Requisitioned as a transport ship.
Returned to service in the 1919 season, making the Kyles of Bute and Arran run her own. Moved to the long cruises to Inveraray and Campbeltown in 1936
Remained in service on the upper Firth during World War II, but did do some Admiralty tendering work.
Returned to the Kyles of Bute run after the war until sold in February 1952. Used by the Admiralty for experimental work at Portland until scrapped at Newhaven in 1970.
TS Queen Alexandra was built in 1912 by William Denny and Brothers, Dumbarton for Turbine Steamers Ltd, to replace a previous Queen Alexandra of 1902, which had been extensively damaged by fire. The new Queen was designed for the long distance cruises. Her first public sailing was on 23 May 1912 to Campbeltown. Fast and manoeuvrable, she soon became a popular boat.
She was requisitioned by the Admiralty as a troop transport ship in 1915, and operated in the English Channel between England and France ferrying soldiers and war materials to supply the Western Front. During her war service she rammed and sank the German Imperial Navy's U-Boat UC-78 off of the French coast at Cherbourg on 9 May 1918.
In 1935, her owners Turbine Steamers Ltd were sold to David MacBrayne Ltd and the turbine steamers King George V and Queen Alexandra transferred to the Western Isles. Queen Alexandra went for refit at Lamont's shipyard, where she was transformed. This was all in preparation for her new role on the "Royal Route". Her similarity to Cunard's Queen Mary earned her the nickname "MacBrayne's little Cunarder".
Withdrawn after 48 years of sterling service in September 1958, she was towed to Smith & Houston's shipyard in Port Glasgow on 23 December 1958 and was scrapped.
The Viper was built at the Fairfield Shipbuilding & Engineering Co's yard in Govan in 1906 and was 315 feet in length. She had three steam turbines powering the triple screws, making her one of the company's fastest ships with a top speed of 22 knots. The steamer worked the Ardrossan-Belfast route from 1906 to 1914.
The ship served as a troop carrier in the English Channel during the First World War but returned to operation on her pre-war route in 1919. However the unrest in Ireland resulted in the decline in passenger traffic with Scotland and Viper was sold to the Isle of Man Steam Packet Co in 1920 and renamed Snaefell.
Year Built: 1905
Date launched: 28/10/1905
Vessel type: Passenger / Cargo
Vessel description: Steel Screw Steamer
Cargo Steel Screw Steamer
Barclay, Curle & Co. Ltd., GlasgowClydeholm Yard 454
Tonnage: 5321 grt / 3437 nrt /
Length: 397.2 ft
Breadth: 50.0 ft
Depth: 29.0 ft
Engine Builder: Barclay, Curle & Co. Ltd., Glasgow
Engine Detail: 1-screw. T3Cyl. (24.75, 42 & 73 - 48)in. 369NHP.
End Year: 1934
Fate / Status: Broken Up 28/09/1934
Disposal Detail: Arrived Trieste for breaking up.