Sunday, 5 December 2010

Monday. 7 April 1913

Hedley starts his apprenticeship, starting work in the Gun Mounting and Ordnance shop.  Also attends Dockyard night school for first time.

Saturday, 4 December 2010

Friday, 3 December 2010

Friday. 4 April 1913

Officially notified that Hedley has passed his Exam for Apprentice in Naval Yard.

Thursday, 2 December 2010

Monday. 24 March 1913

Marian receives notification from police that Tyko is at Mount Austin Barracks, up the Peak.  Marian goes up the Peak and finds him and bring him home.  We are all glad to get the old dog again.  (March 27th Beat has a son).

Wednesday, 1 December 2010

Friday. 14 March 1913

Hedley sits for Dockyard Exam & Wilfred Foster.  Lost Tyko.  See link above for Hedley's week - he mentions Tiko (his spelling)  - but has more fun with gunpowder and fuses!

Tuesday, 30 November 2010

Thursday. 13 March 1913

Hedley takes a days complete rest before sitting for Dockyard Exam for apprentices.

Monday, 29 November 2010

Friday. 28 February 1913

Shing Chan my No 1 Fitter falls from 9' 2" gun, H M S Minotaur,  onto the quarter deck and is attended to by Fleet surgeon.  Head sewn up  & leg put in splints having a fractured knee cap.  Then taken to Dockyard Surgery and then to civil hospital.

Sunday, 28 November 2010

Wednesday, 1 January 1913

This is the first time in history that the Chinese calendar has started the year at the 1st of January.  Chinese New Year always previously coming in February.  This is another step towards civilisation.  Since the Republican Government, all business is suspended in the Colony, Canton, Pelsin etc.  The Chinese decide to ask the Commodore (Anstruther) for a general holiday.  This was granted & the yard closed for the day.

Also in January 1913:  I have my teeth extracted, filled & cleaned by a Japanese dentist - Dr Yamasaki.  Hedley and Fred has one each stopped.

Wednesday, 24 November 2010

Friday, 22 November 1912

Trip to Canton

Marian, Hedley, Freddie & myself left HongKong on the 22nd Nov 1912 at 9 am Friday evening by the SS Kwong Jung. 

We had comfortable sleeping berths.  Hedley, Freddie & myself had a cabin to ourselves.  Marian sharing a cabin with Mrs & Edna Elson.  We arose about 6 am and going on deck, we perceived that we were approaching Canton.  What greatly interested us was the Sam-pans drifting down at a most terrific rate & sweeping by us, close enough for a Chinese-man or woman to jump on board ship while their Sampan went rushing on down the river, until brought about by other occupants.  Then our ship came to a standstill,  & we were literally surrounded by Sam-pans, who were waiting for a fare, the Chinese passengers depended upon these.  We then partook of a most excellent 7 course breakfast, which was served up by the Chinese Stewards, and which we done justice to.  Our little party numbering 25 then took Sam-pans ashore, where we were met by our Minister Rev. C. Bone, Mr Dewstoe a missionary & Li Wing a Chinese missionary who acted as our guides through that most ancient city.

Mr Dewstoe taking charge of the walking party,  & Rev. C Bone & Li Wing the Chair party.  We were of the Sedan Chair party.  The Walking party started off & we took our seats in the Chairs, then the fun commenced, for the Chair-Coolies went on strike & refused to budge an inch, & made a terrific noise, but we could not understand a word, but our guides informed us that they wanted 3 coolies to each chair as we were heavy & after wasting half an hour of our time, we decided to walk & acted accordingly.  The chairs followed us up & eventually we took our seats once more, but 3 would insist upon carrying me, & the funny thing about it was, that I was the lightest man of the party.  But such is a China-man & there is no accounting for things they get into their heads.  I stuck out for some time but, at last gave way, took my seat & brought up the rear.

Once we started we moved along at a rapid pace.  We first visited the 500 Genai or gods, each one representing something.  Well do I remember the god of plenty.  He was a big fat, jolly looking fellow.  While we were looking at the Gods the Chinese priests were chanting and playing most wierd instruments & tom toms & burning Joss-sticks.  We again took our seats in our Chairs & was again hurried through the streets; I shall never forget they were so narrow, you could stand in the centre & touch the houses on either side, so our chairs took the whole width of the street & we were 20 in number.  We visited one or two Temples and Joss houses,  also the British Yamen, where we heard the noted & most remarkable echo.  Upon speaking the echo would repeat most distinctly 3 or 4 times, this was between two large walls, which appeared to be ruins.  This Yamen was taken by the British many years ago because the French took one at that time.  We next paid a visit to the 9 Storey Pagoda, called the Flower Pagoda, it was most interesting.  We then visited the ancient Water Clock.   (For a picture of this very clock go to and scroll down the page). This was  the only clock in Canton at one time.  It is simply 3 tubs one above the other & the water dripping from number one into number 2 & thence into number 3 & the water raise a float at the to of which is a long spill marked off into degrees, & so the time was announced to the inhabitants of Canton every two hours, by the singing of a large Bell.

We then went on the City Wall, which since the Revolution is being removed.  The city of the Dead was also interesting, the bodies were in Chinese Coffins & each one in an house by itself in front of which were Josses & Joss sticks burning, these were waiting until the relatives could find a lucky place in which to bury them, some remaining for many years before burial.  But all these things are rapidly coming to an end in China & one month from our visit this was to be abolished, & the persons responsible have to remove these bodies.  Some of the coffins were made of ebony & very heavy.  In this place we also saw a large number of prisoners with heavy chains around their ankles & about their necks.  We were informed by our guide Li Wing that they had been robbing the dead.  We then took our Chairs again & done a little shopping, but as time was getting short we could not make many bargains.  We then returned to the Rev. Dewstoe's residence where we had a good tea, which we stood much in need of after our long travel through the city.  Here we met the walking party again.  After tea we visited the Shameen where the Europeans live, & left there in Sam-pans for our good ship the SS Kwong Jung at 4 pm.    Mr & Mrs Uchyama paid us a visit on board & presented Marian with a Blackwood Photo Frame.

Our boat left Canton at 6.30 pm.  We were served with a seven course dinner on board which we all done justice to, the majority then turned into bed but some of us stopped up as we were due to arrive in HongKong at about midnight be we actually arrived at 1.20 am Sunday morning, where we took rickshaws for home arriving at 2 o'clock in the morning.

Saturday, 6 November 2010

25 December 1911

Monday.  The situation in China now is very grave, as regards the Europeans.  Having defeated the Manchurians, the Chinese are loosing their heads & talking loudly about turning the Europeans out of HongKong & stones are hurled from the tops of houses etc at the police.  The soldiers are parading the streets with fixed bayonets & loaded rifles.

The secret intelligence department discovered a plot to poison all the troops on Christmas Day.  This was supposed to be carried out by the Chinese cooks.  But the soldiers turn cook & dismiss the Chinese for a week.  Europeans are warned to be ready to meet any emergency & quarters are provided at the Peak for women & children with supplies to last.  My rifle ready & 1000 rounds of ammunition under bed.

Friday, 5 November 2010

13 November 1911


Revolution in China

The 12th day of November Chinese Rebels proclaimed their Independence at Canton and celebrated the event, being Sunday this was not allowed in HongKong.  But was celebrated on the Monday November 13th.  Not a Chinaman coming to work in the dockyard, with the exception of the number one men of each department.  The Europeans returned home & received full pay for the day.  I went in town on the tramcar to Central Market at 12 o'clock mid-day, this being the time stated for display of Chinese Crackers, & the sight was indescribable.  Crackers in thousands & some from 20 to 30 feet long & being lowered as they burnt, by rope tackles on pulley blocks from the verandahs & house tops.  The smoke from the powder was suffocating & at times it was impossible to see many yards in front of us.  The noise was deafening so that we could not speak to one another.  (Mr Mace being my companion).  Afterwards the streets were covered inches deep with coloured papers that remained of the burnt crackers.  Thousands of pigtails were cut off this day.  Consequently there was a terrible rush upon the hat shops & excitement was running at a very high pitch.  This was a day that happens but once in the history of a nation & such as once having seen could never be forgotten in a life time.  The Republican flag was displayed from every window and door.  Business of every description being suspended for the day.

Tuesday, 2 November 2010

25 September 1911

Received my establishment papers from England on our wedding day.  Passed the doctor August 8th/1911.  Date of Establishment September 25th 1911.

Monday, 1 November 2010

12 August 1911

Saturday.  Freddie received his first music lesson, from French teacher

Sunday, 31 October 2010

14 May 1911

Sunday.  Sunday just after mid-night, to be exact early Monday morning 12.45 am, we experienced an earth-quake shock, lasting about three minutes?  We were in bed and fast asleep, but the violent swing of our bed owing to the rocking of the house woke us up, & having a light in the room at the time, we could plainly see the effect of the shock in our room.  The Gas suspended from the ceiling was rocking like a pendulum of a clock & the boy's bed and mosquito net & frame was in motion.

I seemed to be riveted to the bed & could not move until it was all over, & then myself & Marion got out of bed & went onto the front verhanda & there we heard the Chinese in the road talking in an excited state, so we rang the Bell and Ah Wing came upon the scene, & we took him as interpreter & went into the street & he informed us, upon enquiry that, they like ourselves had been disturbed & scared by the shock.  Mrs Doughton, a Japanese-man & us three then went on the sea front & Ah Wing hailed the San-Pans & inquired if they had experienced anything, but they replied in the negative, so he informed us.  We then made tracks for home & got to bed once more, but not feeling very comfortable or safe.

31 October 2010

Great Grandad's diary stops here for a while.  I think setting up home, work and life in general must have taken up all his time, the same as it does for us all today.  However, the next entry is quite interesting........

Saturday, 30 October 2010

30 October 1910

Sunday.  Mr & Mrs Mace & Marian & myself go to Cathedral & chapel in the evening.

Wednesday, 27 October 2010

27 October 1910

Thursday.  We leave the Baltimore Hotel and reside at 177 Wanchai Road.  'So' being our cook.

Saturday, 23 October 2010

23 October 1910

Sunday.  All to to chapel in the morning & return to Mr & Mrs Collins for the rest of the day.  I go to the home in the afternoon & we all go to Chapel in the evening.

Thursday, 21 October 2010

21 October 1910

Friday.  Have holiday & on full pay.  Colonial pay starting from this day.  Mr & Mrs Hearl & two girls & Mr & Mrs Elson & Edna & our family all go up the Peak on the railway & down on the railway.

Wednesday, 20 October 2010

20 October 1910

Thursday.  Arrive HongKong 1 o'clock.  Mr & Mrs Collins & Mr & Mrs Hearl come to meet us on government launch.  Mr Brock meet us & receive us on behalf of Chief Engineer.  Mr Gregory, Elson and myself go to the Naval Yard & report ourselves.  Mrs Elson & Marian go to Baltimore Hotel & take rooms & then return to Mrs Hearls for tiffin & Mr & Mrs Gregory to to Mr & Mrs Collins & we all return to hotel in the evening.

Tuesday, 19 October 2010

19 October 1910

Wednesday.  Sea calm & fine.  Done 287 miles.  Temp in cabin 84 degrees.

Monday, 18 October 2010

18 October 1910

Tuesday.  Sea calm & fine.  Done 292 miles.  Temp in cabin 86 degrees.  Rain very hard after sunset.  Held a concert in 2nd Saloon.  Hedley play violin solo.

Sunday, 17 October 2010

17 October 1910

Monday.  Sea calm & fine.  Done 274 miles.  Temp in cabin 86 degrees.  Rain very hard after sunset.

Saturday, 16 October 2010

16 October 1910

Sunday.  Attend service in the first saloon.  Attend service in the second saloon in the evening.  Done 278 miles and sea calm.  Torrents of rain, temp 84 degrees.

Friday, 15 October 2010

15 October 1910

Saturday.  At Singapore.  Marian & myself to for a walk before breakfast.  We leave the wharf at 10 am & start for HongKong, next stop.  done 16 miles.  Temp in cabin 86 degrees.

Thursday, 14 October 2010

14 October 1910

Friday.  At Singapore.  Marian & myself take a walk before breakfast through the native village.  We land again at 2 o'clock, Dr Kirk, Mrs Mace and Willie, Mrs Nellet & children, Mr & Mrs Gear.  We take tramcar to Johnsone Pier & then rickshaws to the botanical Gardens.  This our first rickshaw ride out East.  We done some shopping & had a very good time generally.  We returned to the ship at 6.30 pm just in time for dinner.  These gardens are said to be the best in the world.  Temp in cabin 88 degrees.

Wednesday, 13 October 2010

13 October 1910

Thursday.  Arrive at Singapore 11 am.  Dr Kirk, Mr & Mrs Gregory, Mrs Mace and Willie, Marian, Boys and myself land and take tramcar from Kepple Harbour to Johnsone Pier see the town & return to ship.  Temp in ship 89 degrees.  Discharge cargo.  Boys dive for money.

Tuesday, 12 October 2010

12 October 1910

Wednesday.  Still at Port Swellanham & leave at 4.30 pm.  Temp in cabin 88 degrees.

Monday, 11 October 2010

11 October 1910

Tuesday.  Arrive at Port Swellanham 12 o'clock midday.  This port is up a river & we discharge more cargo and remain here all night.  Temp in cabin 88 degrees.

Sunday, 10 October 2010

10 October 1910

Monday.  Arrive at Penang 6.30 am.  Marian, Mr Kirk, Mr & Mrs Gregory go ashore & myself.  We take tramcar & go to the Buddist Temple.  See them at worship.  We buy Chinese crackers and fire them to drive the Devil away.  We also feed the turtle and have tea at the top of the Temple.  Go through a Coconut Plantation.  See Bananas growing and Pineapple.  Very warm in morning.  We return to the Ship at 12.30 & land again at 2 o'clock & it rained in torrents all afternoon, we return to the Ship again at 4 o'clock on the P & O steam launch. 

We only took out cargo at this port.  We left the Port about 8 o'clock.  Temp in cabin 84 degrees.


Saturday, 9 October 2010

9 October 1910

Sunday.  Service in First Saloon in morning,  service in Second Saloon in evening.  Done 276 miles.  Temp in cabin 84 degrees.

Friday, 8 October 2010

Thursday, 7 October 2010

7 October 1910

Friday.  A swell on & rather dull weather.  Done 309 miles.  Temp in cabin 84 degrees.

Wednesday, 6 October 2010

6 October 1910

Thursday.  Sea fairly smooth.  Done 210 miles.  Temp in cabin 84 degrees.

Tuesday, 5 October 2010

5 October 1910

Wednesday.  Sea Calm.  Arrive at Colombo inside the breakwater 7 am.  At 9.30 am our party (Dr Kirk, Mr & Mrs Gregory & Mrs Mace & Willie, Wife, Boys and myself) go ashore in P & O steam launch.  We hire two Garries (Open Cabs) from 10 am till 4 pm & drive to Mt Levidius abut 8 miles in the country.  We visit the Buddist Temple, Cinnamon Gardens, Museum and Victoria Park.  Had lunch at Mt Levidius.  Coconut trees & tropical plants look splendid and seem a good race of people.    Returned to our ship (SS Namur) by P & O launch about 4.30 pm & left Colombo Harbour about 5.30 pm after a most enjoyable day.  Expenses 9/6.

Monday, 4 October 2010

4 October 1910

Tuesday.  Sea calm, done 290 miles.  Temp in cabin 82 degrees.  Rain in evening.

Sunday, 3 October 2010

3 October 1910

Monday.  Sea calm done 278 miles.  Temp in cabin 84 degrees.  Rain very hard in the evening.

Saturday, 2 October 2010

2 October 1910

Sunday.  Sea more calm.  Attend Service in the First Saloon in the morning & Services in 2nd Saloon on deck in the evening.  Done 282 miles.  Temp in cabin 84 degrees & rain very hard in the evening, first time since leaving England.

Friday, 1 October 2010

1 October 1910

Saturday.  A rough night & still rough in the morning.  Done 285 miles.  Temp in cabin 84 degrees.

Thursday, 30 September 2010

30 September 1910

Friday.  Monsoon still on & many sick.  Done 290 miles.  Temp in cabin 82 degrees.  Still damp air.  Many flying fish.

Wednesday, 29 September 2010

29 September 1910

Thursday.  Sea rough & increases during the day, many sea sick.  But we are all right.  Mr & Mrs Gregory very ill again.  Done 297 miles & temp in cabin 78 degrees.  Much cooler.  But wet damp air owing to light Monsoon which prevails.

Tuesday, 28 September 2010

28 September 1910

Wednesday.  Sea smooth.  Done 292 miles.  Enter the Indian Ocean & sea smooth.  Temp in cabin 90 degrees.

Monday, 27 September 2010

27 September 1910

Tuesday.  A little cooler & sleep in cabin.  Sea very smooth.  Done 295 miles.  Temp in cabin 94 degrees.  We pass Aden abut 11.30 pm.

Sunday, 26 September 2010

26 September 1910

Monday.  Having slept on deck we get up and find it oppressively hot & so throughout the day.  Done 304 miles & still in the Red Sea.  Can do nothing but sit still & read.  In the afternoon see a good many dolphin jumping out of the water & flying fish.  The Captain dine with us at lunchtime.  Temp in cabin 100 degrees.

Saturday, 25 September 2010

25 September 1910

Sunday.  In the Red Sea a little breeze blowing but much warmer.  Done 302 miles & no service being too warm.  101 degrees in cabin.  In the evening service on deck being conducted by Dr Kirk.  The heat today being terrific & almost unbearable.

Marian seem to feel it more than anyone & we (Marian, boys & myself ) sleep on deck in the smoke room.

Friday, 24 September 2010

24 September 1910

Saturday.  In the Red Sea & getting very warm being at 2 o'clock 116 degrees in the sun and done 272 miles.  Suffocating in the cabin at night & Marian & myself get up and go on deck & sleep on the seats in the Smoke room.

Thursday, 23 September 2010

23 September 1910

Friday.  Morning still going down Canal.  Sighted a caravan of camels crossing the Arabian Desert.  Arrived at Suez 11.20 am & dropped anchor, took in more provisions and water.  We up anchor again at 2.30 am & start in the Red Sea. The water of Suez a nice pale green colour & pretty scenery on shore.  Temp in cabin 90 degrees.  We enter Red Sea & see numerous Flying Fish.

Wednesday, 22 September 2010

22 September 1910

Thurdsay.  Came in sight of Port Said 7.30 am.  Stop eleven hours.  Coal ship and take in provisions.  Doctor Kirk, Mr & Mrs Gregory, Marian & myself go on shore.  We engage a guide & visit the Mohammedan Mosque & see them worship & wash their feet & we handle the Khedives' Sword.  We buy our helmets & toupes etc.  We return to ship for lunch & I go ashore again in the afternoon & take Hedley & Freddie.  But it is a dirty & immoral place.  But very interesting.  The Arab boys dive for money, also dive under our ship & come up the other side and put money in their mouths.  We enjoy ourselves here & a sight worth seeing. 

The sun very warm & 90 degrees in cabin but closed to keep out coal dust.  We up anchor & start down the Suez Canal about 6 o'clock p.m.  Suez Canal 87 miles long.

Tuesday, 21 September 2010

21 September 1910

Wednesday.  Sea more calm & wind dropped.  Done 288 miles.  Temp in cabin 86 degrees.

Monday, 20 September 2010

20 September 1910

Tuesday.  The heaviest sea up to this date, swell being heavier & most of the passengers sick.  But Marian & boys better.  Mr & Mrs Gregory still very sick & Joe keep in his bunk all day.  Sun warm.  Wind high.  Done 271 miles. Temp in cabin 80 degrees.  Water in the Mediterranean Sea a pretty Blue Colour.

Sunday, 19 September 2010

19 September 1910

Monday.  A good swell on & few passengers at the breakfast table.  Marian, Hedley & Freddie sick.  Not so much swell in the afternoon & most of the passengers better.  Mr J Gregory very sick & Mrs Gregory very unwell & see doctor.  Sun warm.  Done 281 miles. Temp in cabin 80 degrees.

Saturday, 18 September 2010

18 September 1910

Sunday.  Sea calm.  Sun warm.  Done 284 miles attend service in First Class Saloon taken by the Captain & Church of England.  Afternoon a childrens service in Second Saloon.  Evening a service in Second Saloon.  Pass Malta 11.30 pm.  Temp in cabin 80 degrees.  

Friday, 17 September 2010

17 September 1910

Saturday.  Sea more calm in the morning but wind rather high & bow on, done 274 miles.  Temp in cabin 77 degrees.   Sun warm.

Thursday, 16 September 2010

16 Sepember 1910

Friday.  Sea very smooth in morning, the wind rising about midday & the sea a little troubled.  Done 290 miles temperature in cabin 78 degrees.  Freddie attend ships doctor with bad finger.  Wind & sea rise at night but ship steady having an heavy cargo.

Wednesday, 15 September 2010

15 September 1910

Thursday.  Bath.  Sea very smooth & sun very warm.  Done 286 miles.  Pass the Rock of Gibraltar one o'clock p.m. & had a good sight of it.  Temperature in cabin 84 degrees.

Tuesday, 14 September 2010

14 September 1910

Wednesday.  All had a bath.  Hedley better.  Ran into a fog bank for about an hour.  Sea like a mill-pond, sun very warm.  Saw a good shoal of porpoises jumping.  Done 286 miles and pass Lisbon.  Temperature in cabin 78 degrees.

Monday, 13 September 2010

13 September 1910

Tuesday.  We all had a bath.  Hedley a little sea sick.  Sea just a little swell.  Sun very warm.  Temp in cabin 75 degrees.  Done 293 miles & pass Cape St Vincent.

Sunday, 12 September 2010

12 September 1910

Monday.  Up at 6.45 am.  Hedley a little sea-sick in morning.  Lovely day sun warm.  Crossing the Bay of Biscay sea smooth just a little swell & Mr Gregory sea sick & a few more of the passengers.  Done 293 miles.  Temp in cabin 68 degrees.

Saturday, 11 September 2010

11 September 1910

Sunday.  Up at 5 o'clock in the morning and had a bath.  Fine day,  sun warm & sea calm.  Retired about 11 o'clock, done 137 miles & passed the Isle of White.  Temp 65 degrees in cabin.

Friday, 10 September 2010

10 September 1910

Saturday.  I got up early & walked as far as the Strand.  Returned to the Welcome & had breakfast.  We then all walked as far as St Pauls Cathedral & stopped to a part of the service.  Then returned to Liverpool St. Station & took the special train to Royal Albert Dock.  Leaving at 12.19 pm.  Boat the SS Namur left Royal Albert Dock about 2.30 pm & proceeded down the Thames & anchored below Gravesend until 12 o'clock midnight.  Arrived off the Isle of White about 2.30 am Sunday morning.

Thursday, 9 September 2010

9 September 1910

Friday.  Packed up our luggage & left Mrs Prins 17 Princes Street.  Marian, boys and myself left Milbay Station 10.30 am.  Arrived Paddington 3.30 pm.  Beat and Doris saw us off.  Mr Mrs and Edna Elson, travelled with us to London and we all put up at the Welcome, Devonshire Street, nr Liverpool Street Station.  Went for a walk down Whitechapel. Return to the Welcome put the children to bed & Mr & Mrs Elson & ourselves went to the Olympia.  (Gave a call to Dirty Dicks)

Wednesday, 8 September 2010

8 September 1910

Thursday. Boys and myself have a dip in the morning.  Marian and myself go in town and fetch photos.  Arch and Beat come up in the evening.  This our last day in Plymouth before sailing for HongKong.

Tuesday, 7 September 2010

7 September 1910

Wednesday.  Boys & myself have a dip.  I settle the bill with Turpins for removal of furniture to Royal Albert Dock.  In the evening I go on the Pier with Arch fishing.

Monday, 6 September 2010

6 September 1910

Tuesday.  In the morning have a dip & then sent off baggage by G.W.R to Royal Albert Dock.  Marian & myself go in town, in the evening Arch & Beat come to 17 Princes St & spend the evening with us.

Sunday, 5 September 2010

5 September 1910

Monday.  Went to work in N.O. Dept in the morning.  1/2 day leave in the afternoon & get baggage ready for sending to London.

Saturday, 4 September 2010

4 September 1910

Sunday.  We all went on the Hoe in the morning.  In afternoon met Arch & Beat on the Hoe by appointment and went there to sea.  Returning home to 17 Princes St about 9 o'clock.

Friday, 3 September 2010

3 September 1910

Saturday.  On half a days leave, go for a dip.  Turpins' men finish packing the furniture.  Lifeboat Saturday.  We all have our photos taken left 55 Nolte Str and take furnished apartments with Mrs Prinn at 17 Princes St on Friday evening (this should have been entered Friday Sept 2nd)

Thursday, 2 September 2010

2 September 1910

Friday.  Work in N.O. Dep. in the morning and men from Turpins' come and fetch boxes and pack furniture and I have half a days leave and go for a dip.

Sunday, 15 August 2010

The Day Trip to HongKong begins 100 years ago.

On Saturday the 10th September 1910 my Great-Grandfather - Thomas
Roebuck Day, his wife Marion Dalo Dallenger-Day and their two sons
Thomas Hedley Gordon Day (my paternal Grandfather) and Frederick Day
set sail at 2.30 pm from the Royal Albert Dock on the SS Namur (a P&O
Steamer), proceeded down the Thames and anchored below Gravesend
until 12 o'clock midnight. Arriving off the Isle of Wight at about
2.30 am on Sunday morning.

This was the beginning of a 40 day sea journey which took them to
HongKong, via the Mediterranean, Port Said, through the Suez Canal,
through the Red Sea, Indian Ocean, visiting Ceylon (as it was known
then), Penang, & Singapore. They lived in HongKong until May 1915
when they had to endure the return voyage to England, taking on
refuges, a burial at sea, running the guantlet of German U-boats in
the Mediterranean.

My Great-Grandfather wrote a brilliant diary about the sea voyages
and the family's life in Hongkong, which I think is a revealing
social comment on the attitudes and lives of British people at that
time.  In this blog I will publish my Great Grandfather's diary as he wrote it, starting soon with the family's very brief preparations to pack up home in Plymouth and make the journey by train to London.