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House flags of British shipping companies (11)

Last modified: 2004-08-14 by rob raeside
Keywords: house flag | aberdeen coal and shipping co | andrew weir | blue funnel line | ah | lozenge | booth steamship | b | saltire | anchor line | anchor (red) | belfast steamship |
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Aberdeen and Commonwealth Line

[Aberdeen and Commonwealth Line houseflag] by James Dignan

Based on an illustration by Sampson (1957)
James Dignan, 8 October 2003

I have also a flag with the star pointing upwards.
Jarig Bakker, 8 October 2003

Brown's Flags and Funnels (1940):
Aberdeen and Commonwealth Line, ltd. (Geo. Thompson & Co., Ltd.), London
Funnel: Yellow.
Flag: Red over blue, a white six-pointed star pointing flywise. The star may be intended as having a spanning circle half the height of the flag.
Peter Hans van den Muijzenberg, 18 October 2003

Aberdeen Coal and Shipping Co., Ltd.

[Aberdeen Coal and Shipping Co. Ltd. houseflag] by Phil Nelson, 8 April 2000

from Stewart and Styring's Flags, Funnels and Hull Colors 1963

Aberdeen Coal & Shipping Co. Ltd. originated 1902 as the Aberdeen Coal Co. Ltd. changing its name as noted by Brown 1926 but continuing to show the original flag, which had the red letters "A.C.C." on the central stripe, apparently to post WW2 with Brown 1951 still showing this version and Stewart & Styring (1963) being the first to show the new flag.
Neale Rosanoski, 9 February 2004


Adelaide Steamship Co.

[Adelaide Steamship Co. houseflag] by James Dignan

Based on Sampson (1957)
James Dignan, 10 October 2003

Formed in 1875. Merged with Gulf Steamship Company in 1882. The company has been reorganized from liquidation in 1900 and 1920. The company stopped operating as a maritime entity in 1977 changing its name to Residual Assco Group Ltd. The Marine division became Adsteam Marine Ltd. Australia.
Phil Nelson, 10 October 2003

The Adelaide Steamship Co. Ltd.: Sources generally indicate a larger star. According to Loughran (1979) the flag originated from the "X" international signal flag with the addition of the star. The change of name given as 1977 (possibly confusion here with a proposed merger with Howard Smith which the Trade Practices Tribunal refused to sanction] was actually 1997 and the shipping interests handled by Adsteam Marine were mainly tugs, mostly in joint ventures with Howard Smith Ltd. who were the operators. The Adsteam shareholding was immediately put on the market by Adelaide Steam and oversubscribed.
Neale Rosanoski, 9 February 2004


Aitken, Lilburn & Co. (Loch Line)

[Aitken, Lilburn & Co. houseflag] by Ivan Sache

The flag is white with a red triangle charged with the letters G.S.C. Co (white).
Source: 1911 Lloyd's flagbook, as illustrated at The Mystic Seaport Foundation.
Ivan Sache, 14 January 2004


Ald Shipping Co.

[Ald Shipping Co. houseflag] by James Dignan

Based on Sampson (1957)
James Dignan, 12 October 2003

Appears to have been out of Bristol.
Phil Nelson, 12 October 2003

Ald Shipping Co. Formed 1923 and out of Bristol, last ship sold in 1960.
Neale Rosanoski, 9 February 2004


Alfred Holt & Co.

[Alfred Holt & Co. houseflag] by James Dignan

Based on Sampson (1957)
James Dignan, 10 October 2003

Also known as the Blue Funnel Line - Ocean Steam Ship Company. Ltd., and China Mutual Steam Navigation Company Ltd.
Houseflag: Blue, with White Diamond, AH in Black in center.
Jarig Bakker, 10 October 2003

See http://fp.redduster.f9.co.uk/BLUEFUN.htm for a history of the company.
Phil Nelson, 10 October 2003

Larousse Commercial Illustré (1930) shows Alfred Holt (Blue Funnel Line), Liverpool: blue, a white diamond in the centre bearing a black monogram AH (with serifs, the letters joined). The distances from the flag's edges to the diamond's appear equal (that is to say, about one fourth of flag height), while the monogram's height is about one third of the flag's.
Jan Mertens, 16 May 2004
 


Allan Line

[Allan Line houseflag]by Jarig Bakker

The "Allan" Line Steamship Co., Ltd. was founded in Glasgow begin 19th century, and became Ltd in 1897; London, Liverpool, Glasgow, Le Havre - East coast of North America, from the St. Lawrence till the La Plata.
Houseflag: red pennant over a vertical triband of red, white and blue.
Source: Houseflag chart in Brockhaus' Konversations-Lexikon, 14th ed (c.1907)
Jarig Bakker, 13 October 2003

The Allan Line was more formally known as Montreal Ocean Steamship Company. It merged with the Canadian Pacific Line in 1915 and operated as Canadian Pacific Ocean Services afterwards.
Phil Nelson, 13 October 2003

Allan Line. Could also be listed under Canada. They originated from UK as sailing ship operators with the family becoming established on both sides of the Atlantic but the change to steamships was effected by the formation of the Montreal Ocean Steamship Co. in Montreal, with in due course H & A Allan looking after the Canadian side and Allan Brothers the UK side. The 1897 reorganisation saw Montreal Ocean Steamship become Allan Line of Steamships Ltd. and was presumably also registered in Canada with the ships appearing to be registered in either country. The UK company apparently became Hall Brothers Steam Ship Co., U.K. Ltd. and some later sources show the livery under this name and domicile, others inclining to merely using Allan Line. Originally the main flag was blue-white-red, the change being shown by Lloyds 1904 and I suspect that it may have occurred with the 1897 change.
Neale Rosanoski, 9 February 2004


Anchor Line

[Anchor Line houseflag] by Al Fisher, 25 Jan 1999

Anchor Line. The four links in the chain (some sources show more or less) are said to represent the four Henderson brothers who were involved in the company which originated in the 1850s as Handyside & Henderson, adopting the name Anchor Line in 1899.
Neale Rosanoski, 9 February 2004

Anchor Line, Glasgow: Larousse Commercial Illustré (1930) shows a white swallow-tail, a red anchor placed diagonally (flukes in upper hoist corner), three rings of the anchor chain showing in the lower fly corner. The image above shows four rings, the number of which is said to have some significance – compare this site with (it says `four links of cable'!) this site. Perhaps the on-line 1912 Lloyds is right, see No. 226 on p. 13 (four links attached to the anchor's own ring) at this site (i.e., `Anchor Line (Henderson Bros.), Ltd., Glasgow').
Jan Mertens, 4 June 2004


Andrew Weir Shipping Co. Ltd. (logo)

  [Andrew Weir Co. houseflag] by Aingeru Astui Zarraga, 26 April 2002

The logo with the crown and a pair of hands holding the ship belongs to "Andrew Weir Shipping Ltd.". The one of the McAndrews is most simple. See also Bank Line.

Larousse Commercial Illustré (1930) shows Andrew Weir & Co. (Bank Line), London: diagonally divided red-blue (upward slant, lower hoist to upper fly), a thin white stripe between upper hoist corner and lower fly corner), the stripe's width being about one eight of flag height. The logo shown here of 'Andrew Weir Shipping Co. Ltd.' and similar flag of 'Bank Line': see the latter one for more information on the company names.
Jan Mertens, 28 May 2004


Anglo Saxon Petroleum Co. Ltd.

[Athel Line houseflag] by Jarig Bakker

Larousse Commercial Illustré (1930) shows Anglo Saxon Petroleum Co. Ltd., London: white, a thin blue saltire (let us say, one fifth of flag height) and a red disk in the centre, the disk being about one third of flag height. The on-line 1912 Lloyds shows this flag (with a broader saltire) under No. 1372: http://www.mysticseaport.org/library/initiative/ImPage.cfm?PageNum=67&BibId=11061&ChapterId=8

Jan Mertens, 19 May 2004


Athel Line

[Athel Line houseflag] by James Dignan

Based on Sampson (1957)
James Dignan, 17 October 2003

Houseflag: Navy Blue; ATHEL in blue letters in white diamond.
Jarig Bakker, 17 October 2003

Athel Line was a subsidiary of United Molasses. London UK.
Phil Nelson, 18 October 2003


Atlantic Container Line, Ltd.

[Atlantic Container Line, Ltd. houseflag] by Jorge Candeias

A dark blue sigla over a wavy stripe on a white background.
Jorge Candeias, 1 May 2004

This is the new houseflag of Atlantic Container Line Ltd., London, a consortium formed 1966, with an international membership. The partners are Cunard Line, the Compagnie Generale Transatlantique, Holland-Amerika Lijn, Svenska-Amerika Linien, Transatlantic Rederi, and Wallenius Line. Its specialty was roll-on, roll-off.
Jarig Bakker, 1 May 2004

Old flag

[Atlantic Container Line, Ltd. houseflag] by Jarig Bakker

The firm's monogram alone formed the emblem of the original houseflag. With the appearance of the later vessel, such as the "Atlantic Cognac", a new houseflag was adopted, bearing simpler initials.
Source: "A Survey of Mercantile Houseflags & Funnels", by J.L. Loughran (1979)
Jarig Bakker, 1 May 2004


Atlantic Steamship Co. Ltd.

[Atlantic Steamship Co. Ltd. houseflag] by Ivan Sache, 30 December 2001

Atlantic Steam Navigation Co. began in the 1930's, but had no ships until 1945/46 when they acquired ex-navy landing craft, and later pioneered purpose built RoRo [roll-on-roll-off] ships. They also traded under the name Transport Ferry Service. The flag was a white burgee, bordered in blue and with a bluebird motif in the centre. In 1974 the company was acquired by Townsend Thoresen and the flag slowly phased out as ship liveries were changed at refit.
Ted Harrison
, 11 December 2001

Atlantic Steamship Co. being actually Atlantic Steam Navigation Co. Ltd. as pointed out by Ted, also had a commodore's flag which was the normal flag with a miniature placed in the canton i.e. a flag upon a flag. Most sources show the flag without a top and bottom border i.e. just the "bluebird" in the tail. In 1987 having come under P&O the company followed its flag into oblivion becoming P&O European Ferries (Felixstowe) Ltd.
Neale Rosanoski, 9 February 2004


Bank Line

[Belfast Steamship Co. Ltd houseflag] by Jorge Candeias, 24 April 2002

This is a company that serves the South Pacific islands but is, at least originally, a Scottish company. A couple of websites include information on this company, namely www.freightertravel.hb.co.nz/shippinglines/bankline.htm and  ships.utopia.co.nz/Willowbank.html. The Scottish origins are very evident in the flag, which could be described as a Scottish flag with an arm of the cross removed and half of the field turned red. In other more vexillological words, it's a diagonal bicolour (lower hoist - upper fly) red over blue with a white diagonal band throughout.
Jorge Candeias, 24 April 2002

The "Bank Line" is part of the "Andrew Weir Shipping Co. Ltd." founded in 1885 and established in London. The "Bank Line" was formed by Andrew Weir in 1905 and since that time has been operating regular services between Europe and the South Pacific. Another subsidiary of "Andrew Weir" is "McAndrews", a ship agency organization that provides services throughout the Iberian Peninsula. Its regional offices are located in Spain and Portugal. It was established in 1770 by William McAndrews as a shipping and trading company.
Aingeru Astui Zarraga, 25 April 2002

The "Bank Line" is part of the "Andrew Weir Shipping Ltd." founded in 1885 and established in London. The "Bank Line" was formed by Andrew Weir in 1905 and since that time has been operating regular services between Europe and the South Pacific. Recently the Andrew Weir website noted that Andrew Weir Shipping (AWS) has signed an agreement to sell The Bank Line (South Pacific) service to The China Navigation Co Ltd (CNCo), the deepsea shipping arm of the Swire Group.
Phil Nelson, 12 October 2003

Bank Line. More accurately this is the flag of Andrew Weir Shipping Co. Ltd. with Bank Line being an original alias, "bank" being the common suffix used for their ship names, before the formation in 1905 of The Bank Line Ltd. under which most of the ships were then registered. In 1989 this latter company changed name to Andrew Weir Shipping Ltd. and thus the Bank Line "service" reference reverted to its original position and it is this service only which has been sold to China Navigation, the ships involved remaining under Weir as owners and managers and likewise with the flag. During their operations Weir have operated several service lines and one, the India-Africa Line which originated from the 1932 takeover of the India Natal Line, had its own flag which was blue with a narrow diagonal biband of white over red from upper hoist to lower fly.
Neale Rosanoski, 9 February 2004


Belfast, Mersey & Manchester S.S. Co.

[Belfast, Mersey & Manchester S.S. Co. houseflag] by James Dignan

Based on Sampson (1957)
James Dignan, 11 October 2003

This company was a subsidiary of Coast Lines.
Phil Nelson, 11 October 2003

[Belfast, Mersey & Manchester S.S. Co. houseflag] by Rob Raeside

Belfast, Mersey & Manchester S.S. Co. Sources disagree over whether the letters were blue or black, or the red shown here. Originated as the Belfast & Mersey Steamship Co. with a similar flag bearing a larger white diamond and the blue letters "B+M" over "S.S.Co."
Neale Rosanoski, 9 February 2004


Belfast Steamship Co. Ltd

[Belfast Steamship Co. Ltd houseflag] by Ivan Sache, 14 March 2004

Belfast Steamship Co. Ltd. Formed in 1851 and for a long time under the control of Coast Line Ltd., the fleet ended up being absorbed as part of P&O Ferries Ltd. Griffin 1895 reverses the colours i.e. a red circle on a white pennant but this would appear to be simply an error as nobody else, before or after, suggests that such a flag ever existed.
Neale Rosanoski, 9 February 2004


Bland Line Ltd.

[Bland Line houseflag] by Phil Nelson, 11 April 2000

from Stewart and Styring's Flags, Funnels and Hull Colors 1963

[Bland Line houseflag] by Rob Raeside

Bland Line Ltd. Originated around 1810 and based Gibraltar, for most of the time shown as M.H. Bland & Co. Ltd. trading as Bland Line up until the 1970s, possibly becoming Bland Ltd. by 1980 and apparently ceasing in the latter 1980s. According to Brown 1978 & 1982 the diamond was altered so that the dexter half comprised horizontal lines of red-white (they show 19) [see second image which shows more lines for artistic effect].
Neale Rosanoski, 9 February 2004


Blue Star Line

[Blue Star Line houseflag]by James Dignan

Based on an illustration by Sampson (1957)
James Dignan, 8 October 2003

This company operated from London to Brazil and the River Plate. The houseflag was a red burgee with a five-pointed blue star on a white disc.
Jarig Bakker, 8 October 2003

Brown's Flags and Funnels (1940): Blue Star Line Ltd., London
Funnel: Red with a blue five-pointed star on a white disk, close to a black top with a white band.
Flag: A red swallow-tailed flag with near the hoist on a white disk a blue five-pointed star. The angle of the fork is approximately 60 degrees, the diminishing of the outside is at approximately 5 degrees. The diameter of the disk appears to be equal to the distance between the tips.
Peter Hans van den Muijzenberg, 18 October 2003

Blue Star Line. The original flag did not have a white circle, with this being added in September 1928.
Neale Rosanoski, 9 February 2004

Larousse Commercial Illustré (1930) shows Blue Star Line (1920), London: a red swallow-tail with tapering edges, a five-pointed blue star near the hoist. It not only mentions '1920' but furthermore draws a funnel with the blue star on a white disk. The version with white disk is shown; although according to Neale, it replaced the previous one in 1928.
A nice site is dedicated to this line is at http://www.bluestarline.org/index.html and near the end of the following page, you will find a menu showing the earlier flag but with the star very near the upper edge: http://www.bluestarline.org/avila1.html whereas Larousse shows it as the on-line 1912 Lloyd's Flags & Funnels does:
see No. 1470 on p. 71, 'Blue Star Line Ltd., London': http://www.mysticseaport.org/library/initiative/ImPage.cfm?PageNum=71&BibId=11061&ChapterId=8
Jan Mertens, 28 May 2004


Bolton Steam Shipping Co.

[Bolton Steam Shipping Co. houseflag] by James Dignan

Based on an illustration by Sampson (1957)
James Dignan, 8 October 2003

Company based in London, UK. Stewart & Styring (1963) shows periods following each initial.
Phil Nelson, 9 October 2003

Brown 10: Bolton Steam Shipping Co., Ltd., London
Funnel: Black
Flag: 2:3, Red, in a white diamond throughout in red the text "F.B.", in letters approximately one-third in height.

James' image is:
Flag: 2:3, Red, in a white diamond throughout in red the letters "FB", in letters approximately one-third in height. I have the impression several companies originally used periods to indicate abbreviations, but later improved the flag image by dropping those. Earlier this year I went looking for information on this firm, but all I
could gather was that there were already Boltons in shipping in London in the Napoleonic era; the time frame, and the initials, suggest Fred Bolton; the company was still active as a liner in 1996.
Peter Hans van den Muijzenberg, 20 October 2003

Bolton Steam Shipping Co. Ltd. Sources vary as to whether there were dots after the letters. According to Talbot-Booth the company originated 1885, apparently as Frederic [spelling taken from Lloyds 1904] Bolton & Co. trading as Bolton Steamship Co. Ltd. but Griffin 1895 shows them as Bolton & Kenneth. In 1982 they were bought by Nosira Shipping (Carnival Cruises Line Group) with Carnival in turn selling them both in 1987 to the Mountleigh Group. Whilst part of the Carnival Group it seems that Bolton Maritime Management Ltd. was set up to manage the fleets of Bolton Steamship and Nosira Shipping but these two seem to have got out of ship-owning soon after and by 1992 the management company are noted in Lloyds Shipowners acting for a non related company but after that the trail is cold.
Neale Rosanoski, 9 February 2004


Booth Steamship Co., Ltd.

[Booth Steamship Co., Ltd. houseflag] by Al Fisher, 25 Jan 1999

Sampson (1957) shows this flag with a black B.
James Dignan, 8 October 2003

Booth Steamship Co. Ltd. Formed in 1866 the original flag has a bee on it but unfortunately there is no record of the flag colours. The next flag, adopted towards the end of that century [certainly by 1885 at least] had a small "B" wholly on the saltire with the red visible behind it as shown here. Then there was a change to a larger letter with white behind it [see image below] which occurred after the outbreak of WW2 according to Loughran (1979) though sources up to Brown 1951 show the older version with Stewart (1953) on showing the new version. I would suggest that Sampson has got the letter colour wrong with the common confusion between dark blue and black. The company itself was absorbed into Blue Star Line  in 1975.
Neale Rosanoski, 9 February 2004

[Booth Steamship Co., Ltd. houseflag] by Rob Raeside

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