Durban Castle

The Ship

Sold for Scrap 1962

The Durban Castle (17,388 grt, 594 ft. long) was built in 1938 and broken up by 1962.

One of the few liners to be involved in a murder case was the 17,400-ton Durban Castle, which was owned by Union-Castle Line.

The liner was homeward bound in 1947 when a passenger, actress, Gay Gibson, 21, disappeared overboard. A steward was later convicted of her murder and sentenced to death though he was subsequently reprieved.

Durban Castle was built by Harland and Wolff in Belfast and joined the fleet in 1938.

Early in the Second World War, the liner brought the King of Greece to England. After a number of trooping voyages, Durban Castle was turned into an infantry landing ship. She took part in the North African invasion and campaigns in Sicily and southern France.

After the war, Durban Castle underwent a major refit and then took her place temporarily in the passenger and mail service from Southampton to the Cape. When new liners were completed, Durban Castle returned to the East Africa route from London. Later she operated on a round-Africa service.

Trade declined and operating costs began to climb, resulting in Union-Castle withdrawing the ship. She was later sold for 200,000 to a Hamburg firm to be broken up in 1962.

My Postcards

Postally used but stamp is missing - 28 Oct 1954.


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