The Loftsman
Leith Shipyards

A history of the Ships built at the Henry Robb Shipyard in Leith, Scotland. Also a testimony to the men who built the Ships and to all who sailed in them.
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Home Ships Built in Leith 1918 to 1939 RIO - Yard No 201 - Tug - Union Lighterage Co Ltd - Built 1933

Leith Shipyards

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RIO - Yard No 201 - Tug - Union Lighterage Co Ltd - Built 1933

No photograph available yet.

Another of the Union Lighterage tugs built at the Leith Shipyards of Henry Robb, the tug RIO was seen on the river up until the 1970's
Owners    Union Lighterage Company Ltd
Registered    London Keel Laid    
Type of Ship    Diesel Tug Launched    09/10/1934
      Handed Over    
Ship Details          
Length Overall     Launch Details    
Length B.P.    70' 0" Weather    
Beam    20' 0" Time to Water    
Depth Moulded    9' 0"      
Draught    7' 3"      
Grt    80 tons      
Engines   6cyl 4SCSA Ruston Hornsby diesel engine, producing 310 bhp       
Props    1      
Other known names    N/A    
Current Status   Scrapped in 1974    
Content on RIO will be added as and when available. 
Ships History

Once a ship had been built and launched she then had to be out-fitted, and then complete sea trials
before being handed over to her new owners, who would look to have that ship at sea, as long as possible to
pay for her build costs and of course to make the company good profits.

To this end one company may have had no requirement for a particular ship after a time and would then sell her on just like any other disposable commodity.

Hence a ship may have had a few owners and would go through many changes and names during what was
hoped for a long and successful working life.

1934 Delivered to Union Lighterage Co Ltd., London. 1971 Sold for scrapping at Sheerness. 08-1974 Arrived at T W Ward Ltd., Grays for scrapping.

We try here to give as full an account of her history as time and research permits, if you know of missing info
or you have any photographs of her, then please get in touch and we shall update her story as we go along.

Tales from the Ship

Here you will find the stories from the men and women who sailed on the ships, what was it really like to be working on a ship in a raging sea and in the pitch dark of night, the real stories some funny some sad, some good and some bad.

Dedicated to all the brave men and women who sailed the vessels from the Leith Shipyards.

Should you know of anyone who may have sailed on her, then please feel free to get in touch so that we can add the story here.

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0 #1 David Hughes 2013-09-19 16:21
My uncle on my mothers side Joe Woodford was captain of the Rio for UNION LTGE in40s/50s I was apprenticed onto the the THAMES myself in 1956 and towed many times behind the RIO indeed I have a model of the RIO made by another lighterman George Shute who was mate on Rio at one time Joe Woodfords mate was Albert Doe.The Rios regular run was taking tank barges from Thames Haven up BOW CREEK due to her shallow draught.

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