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British shipping companies (B)

Last modified: 2019-06-04 by rob raeside
Keywords: bolton steam shipping | fb | booker brothers mcconnell | booth steamship | borchard | boston deep sea & fishing | boyd line |
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Bolton Steam Shipping Co.

[Bolton Steam Shipping Co. houseflag] image by James Dignan, 8 October 2003

Based on an illustration by Sampson (1957)
James Dignan, 8 October 2003

Company based in London, UK. Stewart & Styring (1963) shows periods following each initial.
Phil Nelson, 9 October 2003

Brown 10: Bolton Steam Shipping Co., Ltd., London
Funnel: Black
Flag: 2:3, Red, in a white diamond throughout in red the text "F.B.", in letters approximately one-third in height.

James' image is:
Flag: 2:3, Red, in a white diamond throughout in red the letters "FB", in letters approximately one-third in height. I have the impression several companies originally used periods to indicate abbreviations, but later improved the flag image by dropping those. Earlier this year I went looking for information on this firm, but all I
could gather was that there were already Boltons in shipping in London in the Napoleonic era; the time frame, and the initials, suggest Fred Bolton; the company was still active as a liner in 1996.
Peter Hans van den Muijzenberg, 20 October 2003

Bolton Steam Shipping Co. Ltd. Sources vary as to whether there were dots after the letters. According to Talbot-Booth the company originated 1885, apparently as Frederic [spelling taken from Lloyds 1904] Bolton & Co. trading as Bolton Steamship Co. Ltd. but Griffin 1895 shows them as Bolton & Kenneth. In 1982 they were bought by Nosira Shipping (Carnival Cruises Line Group) with Carnival in turn selling them both in 1987 to the Mountleigh Group. Whilst part of the Carnival Group it seems that Bolton Maritime Management Ltd. was set up to manage the fleets of Bolton Steamship and Nosira Shipping but these two seem to have got out of ship-owning soon after and by 1992 the management company are noted in Lloyds Shipowners acting for a non related company but after that the trail is cold.
Neale Rosanoski, 9 February 2004


Booker Brothers McConnell and Co.

[Booker Brothers McConnell and Co. houseflag] by Jarig Bakker, based on the website of the National Maritime Museum.

From the website of the National Maritime Museum, "the house flag of Booker Brothers McConnell and Co., Liverpool. A blue, white and blue triband with a red 'B' on the white stripe in the centre. The flag is made of a wool and synthetic fibre bunting. It has a cotton hoist and is machine sewn. A rope and toggle is attached.

Booker Brothers McConnell and Co. was founded in 1832 as George Booker & Co., and traded in rum and sugar. The Booker family bought their first ship in 1835, the shipping side of the business was run in addition to major sugar production interests in British Guiana. The company merged with John McConnell & Co. in 1900. This multinational conglomerate company is now primarily a food distributor."
Jarig Bakker, 5 August 2004


Booth Steamship Co., Ltd.

[Booth Steamship Co., Ltd. houseflag] by Jarig Bakker, 13 December 2004

Based on Wedge 1926 shows a white field with red saltire; in the center a blue "B".
Jarig Bakker, 13 December 2004

Sampson (1957) shows this flag with a black B.
James Dignan, 8 October 2003

Booth Steamship Co. Ltd. Formed in 1866 the original flag has a bee on it but unfortunately there is no record of the flag colours. The next flag, adopted towards the end of that century [certainly by 1885 at least] had a small "B" wholly on the saltire with the red visible behind it as shown here. Then there was a change to a larger letter with white behind it [see image below] which occurred after the outbreak of WW2 according to Loughran (1979) though sources up to Brown 1951 show the older version with Stewart (1953) on showing the new version. I would suggest that Sampson has got the letter colour wrong with the common confusion between dark blue and black. The company itself was absorbed into Blue Star Line in 1975.
Neale Rosanoski, 9 February 2004

[Booth Steamship Co., Ltd. houseflag] by Rob Raeside

I have in my possession a menu that my mother picked up when she arrived in England in 1958. She tells me that 1958 was the last time RMS Hilary carried passengers because it later became a cargo ship. The menu has the coat of arms which depict a circle with the Booth Steamship Co. Ltd and inside that a white flag with red cross and a blue B in the middle. There is no red within the blue as I noted on the website.
Valletta Bayley, 4 July 2007


Borchard Lines Ltd.

[Borchard Lines houseflag] by Ivan Sache, 29 February 2004

White flag with a wind-rose made of a four-pointed blue star (N W S E) and a four-pointed red star (NE SE SW NE) superimposed on it.
Ivan Sache, 29 February 2004

Borchard Lines Ltd. Flag emblem is that of the German company Fairplay Schleppdampfschiffs Reederei Richard Borchard GmbH with the colours reversed.
Neale Rosanoski, 22 March 2004


Boston Deep Sea Fishing and Ice Co.

[Boston Deep Sea Fishing and Ice Co. houseflag] by Jarig Bakker, based on the website of the National Maritime Museum.

From the website of the National Maritime Museum, "the house flag of the Boston Deep Sea Fishing and Ice Co. Ltd. On a blue swallow-tailed burgee, there is a white shield with three red crowns. The design is loosely based on the arms of Boston, Lincolnshire - sable and three coronets. The flag is made of a wool and synthetic fibre bunting. It has a cotton hoist and shield. The flag is machine sewn. A rope and toggle is attached.

The shipping company was formed on 7 August 1885 and started in business with seven second-hand fishing smacks. Two new steam trawlers were launched for the company the following November. These vessels were initially based at Hull, but a fish quay and stores were shortly after built at Boston, Lincolnshire. By the 1890s the company was making a profit. In 1922, a collier, the Steam Ship 'Lockwood' went aground across the harbour mouth completely blocking it. The vessel was salvaged by the Boston Deep Sea Fishing and Ice Co., but because the company had trouble obtaining payment from Boston Corporation for this work, the indignant owner, Fred Parkes, decided to move the business to Fleetwood and Grimsby. This marked the end of Boston as a major fishing port. During the years that followed the company acquired many subsidiaries and owned fleets in Fleetwood, Hull, Grimsby and Lowestoft. It was liquidated and reformed as Boston  Deep Sea Fisheries. The company ended its operations in 1979 following the imposition of 200-mile fishing limits and EEC quotas."
Jarig Bakker, 5 August 2004


G.W. Bowman

[G.W. Bowman houseflag] image by Ivan Sache, 20 March 2008

Lloyds Book of House Flags and Funnels (1912) shows the house flag of "G.W. Bowman" (#49, p. 39), a company based in Hull, as blue with the white letters "GWB".
Ivan Sache, 12 March 2008 


C. T. Bowring & Co., Ltd.

[C.T. Bowring & Co., Ltd. houseflag] by Ivan Sache, 14 March 2004

The flag is white with a red saltire.


Boyd Line Ltd

[Boyd Line houseflag] by Jarig Bakker, based on the website of the National Maritime Museum.

From the website of the National Maritime Museum, "the house flag of the Boyd Line Ltd, Hull. A red, white and red triband with a red 'B' on a white stripe in the centre. The flag is made of a wool and synthetic fibre bunting. It has a cotton hoist and is machine sewn. A rope and toggle is attached.

Boyd Line Ltd started in 1936 with three distant water trawlers. Although adversely affected by 200 mile fishing limits and EC membership, the company was still in operation in 2003, fishing in the North Atlantic with two filleter/freezer trawlers. The company supplies white fish to food processors and retailers. Boyd Line Management Services also act as fishery consultants."
Jarig Bakker, 5 August 2004


British Shipping lines: continued