BP Shipping Centenary 2015

Take a look through the archive

During the countdown to this milestone, we'll be sharing some of the stories, photographs and memories of the past 100 years.

32,000 ton British Victory

The 32,000 ton British Victory leaving the fitting wharf.  HMS Hermes on the left and HMS Majestic in the distance.
The tanker was launched by Vickers Armstrongs Ltd, Barrow in Furness on December 13, 1954.  One of the first tankers to display the new funnel design (with the letters BP joining the existing colours).  It was sold in 1973 and renamed Marivic. It was finally demolished in 1977.

Leisure time for some of the crew of BP’s 100,000 ton tanker British Admiral, 1965

This tanker, the third incarnation of the British Admiral would have been less than a year in service when this picture was taken.  It was finally broken up in 1976.  It would be another 14 years (1990) before the next British Admiral was completed and brought into service.

British Sovereign passes HMS

BP Tanker Company’s 32,000 ton oil tanker British Sovereign passes HMS Chieftain.  Dipping the ensign to the Royal Navy has always been a custom in the Merchant Navy.

British Admiral a 100,000 ton BP Tanker

 Third Officer and his wife in cabin, 1964.

British Duchess 1958

Wheelhouse on board BP Tanker Company's 42,000 ton oil tanker British Duchess. Launched by J Brown & Company (Clydebank) Limited in June 1958.  She was sold off in 1975.

British Sovereign 1954

Galley of the 32,000 ton BP Tanker British Sovereign during a voyage in 1957. British Sovereign was launched in 1954 from the Vickers-Armstrongs Ltd, Barrow in Furness. It was sold on in 1972 and finally broken up in 1977.

British Queen 1959

Launch of BP Tanker Company’s 50,000 ton oil tanker British Queen by the Queen Mother at John Brown’s Clydebank Shipyard on September 16, 1959.

British Ensign 1964

In the meantime, here’s a glimpse of work on board one of our vessels; the British Ensign was a steam-turbine powered tanker - its greater length and draft could hold 75,000 tons of oil. Here, engineer officers and apprentices are on watch in the main engine control room. The British Ensign was launched in 1964 by Mrs Ernest Maples, wife of the Minister of Transport at the time. The image captures the main engine control room in June 1964. The British Ensign was one of the steam turbine powered tankers to be launched in the early 60s.