This is not the life story of a seafarer, not an adventure upon the high seas; storms and danger rarely occupy these pages. Charlie Fielder writes of the sail, steam and motor craft aboard which he served, one in particular for which he provides, from notes he made at the time, the intimate details of her pattern of trade, the everyday routine of coastal shipping in his time. This was the little Motor Tanker Prowess, one small unit of the extensive and varied fleet operated by F.T. Everard & Sons of Greenhithe.
Every passage Charlie made aboard is here; the cargo, the work involved in operating such a vessel, the delays because of unreliable machinery, the remarkable number of passages undertaken as this account unfolds in the years ‘between the wars’. It was a time when sailing craft, steam ships and motor coasters all had a significant share of the coastal trade, a maritime sector very much in transition, and vulnerable to the bleak economic climate of those times.
‘A wonderful story – highly recommended’
Sea Breezes Magazine
‘A fascinating chronicle – well illustrated – a picture of a vanished age.’
Baltic and International Maritime Council (BIMCO) Bulletin