Irish Ships and Shipping

Home Page

Dublin Shipping Ltd.

Dublin Shipping ltd. was part of the Jones group of companies. Other shipping lines they owned included Dublin and Cork shipping ltd. and Celtic coasters ltd. They set up Dublin Shipping in the 1970s and had a number of small and medium sized coasters that distributed oil and bitumen  from Wales to depots around Ireland.  These ships were kept busy from the 1970s up until the late 1990s when the group sold off their shipping interests to the Gearbulk shipping company. They mostly ran between ports around Europe but also had a number of charters that took them to places like Cuba and the Baltic. Some of the ships they ran were the Rathmines, the Rathgar, the Rathowen, the Rathdown, the Rathnew a new build from Japan in 1978, the Rathmore, the Rathlynn, the Rathrowan, and the biggest ship they owned the Rathkyle (15,000 tons).


My name is John Cauchi (from Malta) and I sailed on the M/T Rathmore and M/T Rathlynn during 1981 and 1982 as a Radio Officer. I Loved it and the pictures brought back great memories. I know some of the guys in the pictures and I always wondered about them. I only got to keep in touch with a second officer Pat Hayden from Sutton North Dublin.
I have lived in Dublin ever since as I met and wed an Irish Lady, raised a family there with three lovely daughters.
Its was so good to see those pictures of Joe Twoomey and Gerry Martin, Roache and Eddie..
I remember  Billy the chief officer from liverpool too. By time I will now start to remember their names its been a long time. Thank you.

Kind regards
John Cauchi (Maltese John)


  Rathnew underway 1980s
Kieran O'Connell
Photos from Kieran O'Connell and Tom O'Connell.
If anyone can fill in any of the names please send them in.
Rathlynn Crew -
Eddie Smyth on left-Joe Twomey far right.
Rathlynn Crew- Far left, Joe Roche Wexford Tommy O Connell, Youghal. Rathlynn Crew-
 Gerry Martin far left Joe Twomey far right.
Rathlynn crew left Tom O Connell, Youghal -
Joe Roche Wexford.
Rathlynn Underway.
Rathnew. Rathmoy crew- back left Paddy Whyte, Youghal, Paddy (Chippy) McDonnell Dublin R.I.P.
 front right Tom O Connell(R.I.P) Bosun, Youghal.
Rathmoy crew- Christmas front left Peter McDonnell , 2nd from right Kevin Dogherty, far right Tom O Connell(R.I.P) bosun. Rathnew Barry Sharpe.


Photos and info from
Robbie Cox
 in dry-dock Liverpool March 1991.
Imo 6517251
Built as Thorheide
Nobiskug Rendsburg
Yard No 636
Launch Date 30-5-1965
1409 nt
2190 dwt
Loa 77m
Beam 12m
Renamed Rathdown 1971
Sold in 1992 to Tana Trading
Company Panama
Renamed Poss II
Scraped August 2004
straight from dry-dock Dublin 3-5-92
3876 grt
L.o.a 96m
Beam 18m
Built 1982
Asakawa Japan
imo 8203804
Still in services as
Al Kawthar
Saudi Arabia Flag



at no2 oil jetty Dublin
Imo 7818004
Loa 105 m
Beam 16m
Draught max 7.0m
Still in Services as
Choyang Greenpia

at no1 oil jetty Dublin

at no1 oil jetty Dublin

at no1 oil jetty Dublin

River lee  
built j bolson & sons poole
for esso petroleum
built 1959
renamed celtic lee 1972
(celtic tankers)
Dublin shipping
501 grt
668 dwt


MT. Rathdown
Port of Registry: Dublin
Official No. 400932
BHP: 1870
GRT; 1409.14
Black oil carrier, traded on Irish & UK west coast mainly. Photo shows  the vessel entering the river Boyne inbound to Premier Periclase Ltd,  Drogheda Port with a cargo of HFO(heavy fuel oil) about  2,2oomtonnes.

Photos from Tim Wrafter

MT Rathkyle
Port of Registry: Dublin
Official No. 402493 KW: 4476
GRT: 8188 NRT: 4775
LOA: 135mtrs
Clean oil /chemical carrier, 18 tanks, capability for six separate  grades. Dublin Shipping's largest vessel and largest tanker under Irish flag at that time. Photos  (4) taken in Le Harve while discharging  late 1991, on time charter to Statoil of Norway.
Other photo taken 

while loading in Mongstad with cargo for Reykjavik, Iceland also in  late 1991, note snow on deck.

Mt. Rathowen
Port of Registry: Dublin
Official No. 401332
GRT: 2253.41
NRT: 992.24

Black oil carrier, trading on Irish and UK coast. Latterly a bitumen carrier.

The photo shows the vessel in drydock in Malta, September 1981. The  vessel had been taken out of the Irish coast heavy fuel oil service  some time previous and was laid up on the river Barrow immediately east of New Ross town with a skeleton crew on board. Dublin Shipping  secured a contract for a bitumen cargo from Tarragona, east coast of  Spain to Muscat in Oman, Gulf of Oman. A new crew was signed on in New  Ross in August 1981 and the vessel sailed to Milford Haven to load a  cargo of heavy fuel oil for discharge in Avonmouth.
In Avonmouth on  completion of discharge and stores being taken the vessel sailed to  Tarragona. This ship had a reputation for being a difficult ship to  load due to her stability and while loading in Tarragona the vessel  took a large list to starboard and lay onto the jetty. Once loaded she  sailed for Muscat in calm and clear weather and headed over the  Mediterranean Sea with and speed a little over 10kts. When the vessel  was about 30nm north of Malta at about 2330hrs on a clam, clear and  moon light evening the general alarm was sounded and the Master put  out a Mayday message and ordered the lifeboats to be swung out. Water  was flooding into the engine room through the stern tube and water was  making over the plates.
Some time passed while the engineers contained  the water ingress and the pumps were maintaining the water level. In  the interim five vessels were standing by the Rathowen including an  Irish Shipping vessel. With the immediate emergency under control the  vessels standing by we released and a tug was dispatch from Malta to  take the Rathowen in tow. On berthing in Malta a dive inspection  revealed that the stern shaft had split in two. The vessel was dry- docked, shaft removed, stern tube blocked and the vessel re-floated  and secured at a lay-by berth.
 The companies other bitumen carrier the  MT Rathnew which was trading in the Mediterranean came alongside and  took the cargo and returned to it Tarragona. In October the complete  crew was paid of pending the manufacture of a new shaft and delivery  to the Malta Drydocks.
 On Dec 31st 1981 a new crew signed on and the  vessel returned to Tarragona to load the cargo of bitumen for Muscat. 
On sailing the passage was uneventful, passing through the Suez canal  and entering the Red Sea/Gulf of Aden. On route the vessel stopped in  Salalah (Oman)for bunkers and fresh water and eventually berthed in  Muscat only to be arrested. The cargo was discharged and the vessel  remained in Muscat for about ten days until the arrest was lifted. She  return to UK waters arriving in Barry south Wales on the 31st March  1982, the completed crew being paid off the following day.

You can read an article on Dublin Shipping Ltd. by George Humphries at Seafaring Memories of Dublin Shipping


Back to Home page