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 1946 to 1984 JOHN HERBERT - Yard No 444 - Diesel Tug - Preston Dock Commission - Built 1956

Leith Shipyards

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JOHN HERBERT - Yard No 444 - Diesel Tug - Preston Dock Commission - Built 1956


The Tug JOHN HERBERT Ship No 444


(photo credit unknown)


Owners    Preston Dock Commission
Registered     Keel Laid    
Type of Ship    Twin Screw Harbour Tug Launched    22/06/1955
      Handed Over    
Ship Details          
Length Overall     Launch Details    
Length B.P.    86' 0" Weather    
Beam    23' 0" Time to Water    
Depth Mld     12' 0"      
G.R.T.    146 tons      
Engines   Twin 5-cylinder Crossley diesels producing 720bhp      
Props    2      
Other known names   1884-SinbadGlory    
Current Status   Unknown    
Content on the Tug JOHN HERBERT will be added as and when available. 

The Robb built tug JOHN HERBERT

(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 tug JOHN HERBERT was another in the line of tugs built at the Leith Shipyards of Henry Robb, she was built for the grand sum of 69,295 GBP at the time and was named after Alderman John Herbert who was on the Preston town Council. One of a double ship order from the Preston Dock Commission.

She was to work in the harbour and docks at Preston dealing with all the ships in what was a very busy port at one time, she worked a lot in tandem with her sister ship Frank Jamieson and was powered by twin 5-cylinder Crossley diesels producing 720bhp.

She was sold on by Preston Dock Commission to some shady shipping interests in Liechtenstein for the sum of 36,000 GBP and She was to eventually end up working in the middle east after being sold in 1976 and renamed "Sinbad Glory" and was last seen in Basrah around 2006 so who knows what has happened to her since. 

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 #6 Andrew Atkinson 2014-01-22 09:23
Hello aunty Pat. Thanks for the memories of John Herbert, of which I will include in the book set to be published in 2014. There has been quite a lot of initial interest, including the Lancashire Evening Post, who have asked for six photos and Editorial. Have you got any photos, either of John Herbert, or your mum Alice with him?
0 #5 Patricia mackle 2014-01-19 05:50
I have just found in my mother Alices handbag a cutting from the lancashire evening post that states:

-Fire lighters ablaze-
Fire lighters and bottles were involved in a fire which did considerable damage at a wooden store house at 69 bootle street Ribbleton, Preston, late last night. The premises are the property of Alderman J. Herbert of Hamilton house, Hamilton road, Ribbleton, who has a herb-beer and fire-lighters manufacturers business. When police had arrived the fire had gained a good hold and people from adjoining houses were evacuated as a precaution.pres ton N.F.S with three pumps soon had the blaze under control
0 #4 Patricia mackle 2014-01-19 05:38
John Herbert was my grandfather, the father of my mother Alice.
He used to come every week to visit mum and the children used to line up for the penny he gave us. The penny meant a lot to us as we were quite poor and had 11 children in the family. My mother told us that he got off the bus one stop early so that he could afford to give us the pennies
He smoked a pipe and had quite a large mustache which he used to twirl around in his fingers. He was always dressed immaculately with a waist coat and a fob watch and often looked at the time to check for when the bus to go home would be coming.
Another fond memory I have is going to watch him in the town procession because he was an alderman and would lead the town council, when he walked past we would clap our hands because mum was so proud of him
Mum used to take us to visit him in a large mansion called Hamilton House, I seem to recall it was in Ribbleton
0 #3 Andrew Atkinson 2013-11-06 12:15
I am writing a book on John Herbert, my great-granddad. I would be interested in any editorial & photos held by people. My grandad George Atkinson married John Herbert's daughter Alice. Thanks, Andrew Atkinson; John Herbert's great-grandson.
0 #2 Andrew Atkinson 2013-11-06 12:12
Quoting Andrew Wiltshire:
I noted the JOHN HERBERT moored near Basrah, Iraq in June 1980 while passing down the Shatt al Arab waterway on the Bank Line ship RUDDBANK. She changed her name to SINDBAD GLORY in 1984.

JOHN Herbert was my great-granddad. Andrew (Wiltshire) did you take any photos while in Basrah, Iraq?
0 #1 Andrew Wiltshire 2013-04-18 15:00
I noted the JOHN HERBERT moored near Basrah, Iraq in June 1980 while passing down the Shatt al Arab waterway on the Bank Line ship RUDDBANK. She changed her name to SINDBAD GLORY in 1984.

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