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 KONINI - Yard No 457 - Diesel Cargo Vessel - Union Steamship Co N.Zealand - Built 1956

Leith Shipyards

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KONINI - Yard No 457 - Diesel Cargo Vessel - Union Steamship Co N.Zealand - Built 1956



 The M.V.KONINI seen here at Lyttelton, New Zealand

(Photo by the late RC Pulley of Auckland, from L.Butterfields collection)


Owners    Union Steamship Co of New Zealand
Registered    Wellington Keel Laid    
Type of Ship    Cargo Launched    15/02/1957
      Handed Over    
Ship Details          
Length Overall     Launch Details    
Length B.P.    250' 0" Weather    
Beam    41' 6" Time to Water    
Depth Mld     25' 3"      
G.R.T.    2,007 tons      
Engines   2 cycle single acting 5 cyl Clark Sulzer Diesel Engine, built by George Clark Ltd, Sunderland      
Props    1      
Speed    10 knots      
Other known names   1971-King Tower    
Current Status   Broken up 1985    

Content on KONINI will be added as and when available. 



The M.V.KONINI on trials in the Firth of Forth

(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 cargo vessel KONINI was ordered by the Union Steamship Company of New Zealand this was another ship from one of the Leith Shipyards of Henry Robb's best customers. The M.V.KONINI was the second ship of the USSCo, Ltd to carry the name. Slightly bigger than the twin sister ships being built at the same time (KUMALLA and KOONYA)

She was yet another in the long line of ships to operate from New Zealands ports and to test herself against some of the worst weather that the long coastline could throw at a ship.

The M.V.KONINI was part of the large USSCo Ltd's fleet until sold in 1971 to Singapore shipping interests and re-named King Tower. 

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.

The M.V.KONINI underway and this photograph shows that fully laden she did not have much freeboard left amidship but she was a sturdy little ship that took to the water like a duck.

(Photo is from G.Ferguson collection and shown here with permission)


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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