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 M.S.C. ARROW - Yard No 266 - Tug - Manchester Ship Canal Co Ltd - Built 1938

Leith Shipyards

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M.S.C. ARROW - Yard No 266 - Tug - Manchester Ship Canal Co Ltd - Built 1938


The MSC ARROW on the canal

(photo credit unknown)

M.S.C. ARROW another in the long line of tugs built by the Leith Shipyards of Henry Robb for the Manchester Ship Canal.
Owners    Manchester Ship Canal Company Ltd
Registered    Manchester Keel Laid    
Type of Ship    Tug Launched    26/07/1938
      Handed Over    
Ship Details          
Length Overall    92' 0" Launch Details    
Length B.P.    86' 0" Weather    
Beam    23' 0" Time to Water    
Depth Mld     12' 0"      
G.R.T.    144      
Engines    C2cyl by "Aitchison, Blair Ltd", producing-750ihp      
Props    1      
Other known names   1972 SAN PIETRU, 1982 IRENE K., 1983 ANTEOS C    
Current Status   She may still be working in Greek waters.    
Content on will be added as and when available. 


MSC ARROW on the canal

(photo credit unknown)


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.


The Manchester Ship Canal Company, Ltd order for another tug to work on the Manchester Ship Canal, she was in her original state powered by steam, before being converted to diesel in 1962. Re-engined with a  8cyl Ruston type diesel producing 800bhp. Along with a rebuilt super structure she was now complete with a covered in bridge and up to date electrics.

The ARROW spent her war years on the canal used as a tug doing her normal towing work but also used as a fire fighting tug, with constant danger of enemy air raids she was kept busy during the spell from 1939 to 1945.

She worked constantly on the canal for a total of 34 years before being sold on in 1972

She was sold on to the Malta Tug & Lighter Co, Ltd and she was renamed San Pietru, ten years later she was sold on again to Greek shipping interests and was renamed yet again, then she was finally renamed as ANTEOS C and amazing as it is and a real testament to her builders and the men who worked on her she was still working in 2007

70 years and still going strong, wonder if she is still working?  



The above is the ship's registry shown here courtesy of the Manchester Ship Canal Company, Ltd

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.

 MSC-Flag Flag of The Manchester Ship Canal





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0 #1 Marjorie Archibald 2011-09-11 10:34
Can anyone tell me if this is the tug my grand father, Captain William Christopher Brodie was on in 31st August 1938. This was a maiden voyage from Leith to Manchester, by way of the Caledonian Canal.The ship had passed Clachnaharry on its way to Loch Ness A couple of miles from Urquhart Castle most of those on board saw what they thought was the Loch Ness Monster. An entry was made in the ship's log. My grandfather eventually refused to discuss this sighting as they had been ridiculed. But he sweared it was true. I am trying to find out how to get a copy of his Master's ticket for Sail and Steam. If anyone can help, I would be very grateful.

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