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Empire Sandy From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Empire Sandy Career Name: Empire Sandy (1942-48) Ashford (1948-52) Chris M (1953-79) Empire Sandy (since 1979) Owner: Ministry of War Transport (1942-45) Admiralty (1945-53) Great Lakes Paper Co (1953-79) Nautical Adventures Ltd (since 1979) Operator: Overseas Towage & Salvage Co Ltd (1942-48) Risdon Beasley Ltd (1948-53) Great Lakes Paper Co (1953-79) Nautical Adventures Ltd (since 1979) Port of registry: Newcastle upon Tyne (1942-48) Southampton (1948-53) Ft William/Pt Arthur (1953-57) Ft William/Pt Arthur (1957-70) Thunder Bay (since 1970) Builder: Clelands (Successors) Ltd, Willington Quay on Tyne Yard number: 66 Laid down: 22 December 1942 Completed: 14 July 1943 Maiden voyage: Iceland 30 July 1943 Reclassified: 1982 Identification: UK Official Number 169167 (1942-53) Code letters MQTO (1942-48)
IMO Number 5071561 Status: Active General characteristics Class and type: Deep Sea Tug (1942-82) Schooner (since 1982) Tonnage: 485 GRT (1942-82) 338 GT (since 1982) Displacement: 740 Tons (schooner) Length: 135 ft (41.15 m) (tug) 203 ft (61.87 m) (schooner) Beam: 30 ft 1 in (9.17 m) Height: 116 feet (schooner) Draught: 15 ft 2 in (4.62 m) Propulsion: 1 triple expansion steam engine (1942-82) Sails, auxiliary diesel engine (since 1982) Sail plan: Schooner (since 1982) Speed: 16 knots (30 km/h) (since 1982) Capacity: 275 passengers (since 1982) Crew: 25 (since 1982) Armament: Anti Aircraft 1943-1945 Two bronze canons (1990) The Empire Sandy is a tall ship providing chartered tours for the public from Toronto, Canada. She was built as a Englishman/Larch Deep Sea class tugboat for war service by the British Government in 1943. After the war she was renamed to Ashford and then Chris M, before reverting to the original name of Empire Sandy and being converted to a schooner. Contents 1 Tugboat History 2 Schooner cruises 3 See also 4 Notes 5 References 6 External links
The Empire Sandy was one of 1,464 Empire ships built or acquired for war service by the British Government. Built in England in 1943 as a deep sea tugboat,  she was tasked with Royal Navy work and salvaging merchant ships damaged in the Battle of the Atlantic and other naval engagements during the Second World War. She served in the North Atlantic Ocean from Iceland to Sierra Leone, Mediterranean Sea, Indian Ocean and the Bay of Bengal during World War II. The Empire Sandy's WWII 'Official Log-Books' documenting all her WWII voyages are now available for viewing on www.empiresandy.com click on WWII History . Of notable interest are the complete particulars of the crew, names, addresses, ages, next of kin etc. The oldest is the Master, E Thomas, 63 and the youngest is the Cabin Boy, Kenneth Lewis 15. These are in 'Log Book 014'. Another interesting entry is in TNA-25-5-05-094 describing the storm while towing, with His Majesty’s Rescue Tug Hesperia, AFD24 (Admiralty Floating Drydock 24) off the coast of Libya on February 8th 1945. The tug Hesperia and AFD24 were both blown ashore and lost. In 1948 she was bare-boat chartered by Risdon Beazley who renamed her Ashford, together with their Bustler class tug Twyford Ashford entered the rescue towage market.  The Ashford is listed, in 'Part of the Acorn Archive - Hearts of Oak' as part of the salvage team attending HMS Warspite after the Warspite went aground in 23 April 1947. The Ashford is incorrectly identified as tug Englishman, however all other particulars are of the Ashford (Empire Sandy) Ref: http://freepages.family.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~treevecwll/visitorshw.htm Ashford was handed back to the Admialty in 1952. She was then sold to a Canadian firm, Great Lakes Paper Company, renamed Chris M (after Chris Michels, a senior employee of Great Lakes Paper) and came to the Canadian Great Lakes where she spent fifteen years towing timber rafts for Lake Superior logging companies. In the early 1970s the aged ship was to be sold for scrap, but the steel hull was still in very good condition and she was bought by Nautical Adventures Co. for a possible conversion. They completely rebuilt the Chris M as a three masted schooner in the style of the 1880s and she assumed her original name the Empire Sandy . Schooner cruises
Empire Sandy raising her sails in the Toronto Harbour. Empire Sandy began serving the Great Lakes as a tall ship in 1982 based in Toronto, Canada. The 200-foot (61 m) long schooner offers sailings for the public, chartered tours, including weddings and other events, on Lake Ontario, Lake Erie and along the St. Lawrence Seaway. Licensed by Transport Canada to carry 275 passengers, she is Canada's largest schooner. Visitors are usually welcome onboard during the day. Empire Sandy is believed to be the last Empire ship built during World War II to be still sailing. She began serving the Great Lakes as a cruise ship in 1982, and continues to this day.
August 8th, 2012
Viewed 26 Times - Last Visitor from Oshawa, ON - Canada on 09/04/2013 at 6:27 AM