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Barclay Curle & Company, Whiteinch, United Kingdom

This famous company was founded by John Barclay who built wooden sailing ships at Stobcross in 1818. In 1845, Robert Curle became a partner in the firm taking its well known name of Barclay, Curle & Company. The company then bought land downriver at Whiteinch and opened the Clydeholm shipyard in 1855.

In 1912 control of the business passed to the Tyneside shipbuilders Swan, Hunter & Wigham Richardson. The nearby Elderslie Shipyard in Scotstoun was taken over that same year to take work that the main yard could not handle.

In 1913, the North British Diesel Engine Works was built at Whiteinch, a large Titan crane being added in 1920 built by Arrol's in Glasgow.

Around 750 ships were built there for many well known British shipping companies primarily the British India Steam Navigation Company, P&O and Ellerman to name but a few. Names such as Cathay, Comorin, Dunera, Kenya and Uganda spring to mind.

The yard was extensively modernised in 1960-61 but sadly Swan Hunter decided to concentrate all shipbuilding on the Tyne and the yard closed in 1968 following the completion of its last ship, Hamlet a Norwegian bulk carrier which was launched in September 1967. Shiprepairing continued at the Elderslie Dockyard to the west but this was eventually acquired by Yarrow Shipbuilders who developed it as a fitting out facility for their warship builds. The North British Diesel Engine Works was purchased by Sulzer then British Aerospace for the production of naval weapons systems primarily the Sea Dart an Sea Wolf missiles.This ceased in the mid-1980s and the complex became an industrial estate.

The North British Engine Works building and crane are listed and still can be seen today. Some of the streets in the industrial estate bear the names of some of the ships built by Barclay Curle for the British India Line.

With thanks to Paul Strathdee
Passenger ship Uganda in Southampton 1982 Photo of the British registered cruise ship Uganda (IMO 5372094) moored in Southampton, England, 198...
UGANDA at home Taken in June 1976, UGANDA in Glasgow with her birthplace, Barclay Curle's Clydeholm shipyard in the...
Opawa Taken in Cape Town in late 1972 or early 1973.
ALLISON STAR Taken at Yorkhill Quay in Glasgow in 1981 after a spell in drydock. She was a Clyde built ship being...
Opawa at sea Ed.: Photo of the Barclay Curle, Whiteinch UK built ship seen in the early 1970s. See picture #16323...
KENYA First of two for British India's East Africa service built in 1951 by Barclay Curle in Glasgow. This...
UGANDA KENYA's sister delivered again from Barclay Curle in 1952. Legend has it they were identical in ever...
UGANDA A sad sight, photo courtesy of the late len Bath, in 8/ 1985 showing this old former British India v...
Photo of the vessel UGANDA BI vessel laid up in the River Fal. Photo courtesy of late Len Bath. 8/ 1985 Other photos of t...
B.I.'s 'Nardana' of 1956 at Hong Kong British India Steam Nav. Co's "Nardana" (8,511 tons gross, completed November 1956 by Barclay, Curle...
Iranian cargo ship 'Arya Pand' of 1956 Arya National Shipping Lines' "Arya Pand" (8,511 tons gross, completed November 1956 by Barclay, Cur...
B.I.'s 'Nardana' of 1956 at Khorramshahr The "Nardana" at Khorramshahr, Iran, in April 1972 (now under management of P&O's General Cargo Divi...

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