WINDRUSH: A Ship Through Time

WINDRUSH: A Ship Through Time

PAUL ARNOTT    Book Number: 88083    Product format: Hardback

The Windrush scandal shocked the nation and rattled and shamed the government and continues to do so. However, the vessel itself had a remarkable history both before and after her voyage from the Caribbean to England in 1948. She was originally built in Hamburg by German-Jewish shipbuilders Blohm & Voss as a transatlantic ocean cruiser, one of five built in their 'Monte' class from 1924-1930, was named Monte Rosa and launched on 13 December 1930. Between 1932 and 1939 she made over 20 return trips to South America, carrying over 30,000 Germans one a one-way trip - initially workless people in search of new opportunities, then increasingly Jewish families driven out by increasing antisemitism. In 1940 she entered military service and was the servant vessel of the fearsome Tirpitz, engaging the British fleet off Scandinavia and in 1942 she was off Oslo, transporting Norwegian Jews rounded up by Vidkun Quisling to concentration camps in Poland. In 1945 she was captured by the Allies off Kiel in the southern Baltic and renamed the Empire Windrush, but she was in bad shape and only just limped home when repatriating troops from India in 1947. Fully repaired, in 1948 she made the voyage with which her name will be forever associated, arriving at Tilbury on 22 June with 500 mostly Jamaican immigrants who paid the sum of £28.10s for a new life in England. However, her final voyage in 1954 makes for compelling reading. A return trip to Hong Kong was littered with mechanical problems and culminated in a fire in the engine room quickly spreading throughout the ship on the morning of 28 March off Port Said in the mouth of the Suez Canal. An almost perfect evacuation saw all but four of the ship?s 1498 souls saved and she finally sank on 30 March. Paul Arnott?s book is absolutely riveting. The events in which Windrush was central are covered from every angle, but it is his focus on the remarkable chequered history of the ship herself and her crew which immerses the reader - every docking, mishap, breakdown and triumph is felt as if you were on deck. 284pp with b/w photos.
Published price: £20
Bibliophile price: £3.75

Additional product information

ISBN 9780750989862
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