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ssMaritime.com is proud to support a special effort to save the 1965 built T.S.S. Dover!
Please Note: I hereby wish to thank the “Dover Steam Ship Company” for their kind assistance with this page and providing some of the images.
The 1965 built TSS Dover is a British built
twin screw turbine steamship and a typical stern loading roll-on/roll-off
(RORO) passenger car ferry. However, she spent a great deal of her later life
as a permanently berthed floating nightclub before she ceased operations and
has been laid up ever since on the River Tees in
Thankfully there is considerable interest in this classic ferry and in order to preserve her, being the very last steamship to be ordered by British Rail, and a conservation plan is at hand with an excellent organisation having been set up, being the “Dover Steamship Company,” which ssMaritime and our “Save The Classic Liners Campaign” fully supports!
The TSS Dover was built by on the River Tyne
The TSS Dover had the distinction of being the last steam vessel ordered by British Rail but was not the last to enter service. That honour fell to her near sister, Holyhead Ferry 1, built by Hawthorn Leslie, another Tyneside shipyard. When it become apparent that another sailing slot was to become available at Dover, British Rail approached Hawthorn Leslie to build a sister ship but they were unable to complete the vessel to British Rail’s deadline so the order went to the Swan Hunter yard instead. Both vessels had hatches fitted forward these were to facilitate the loading mail by crane and to unload vehicles should the stern loading ramp be rendered unusable. The TSS Dover also had the honour of the last vessel delivered by a British shipyard early and because of this, Swan Hunter was given a special bonus from British Rail.
TSS Dover’s bridge
TSS Dover was the first vessel to appear in the new British Rail livery of a “monastral” blue hull, white waterline/chocolate brown boot topping: white superstructure, pearl grey masts, ventilators and davits. The funnel was painted red with the new logo that consisted of two railway lines with crossings between them and a pale blue house flag was adopted with this logo.
The vessel arrived in
Here we see one of British Rail’s TSS Dover publicity images of a lounge
Life up on deck
A family up on Boat Deck
The vessel entered full time service on the
24th June but she was withdrawn from service on the 28th June as the engines
had developed certain technical problems which resulted in a lack of power,
reduced speed and vibration. The ship resumed service on the 5th July,
following remedial, work between
A Postcard of the TSS Dover
On 9th February 1967,
Postcard of the
Here we see her during her
Here we see her during her latter days
From 22nd May and 19th September 1970,
Soon she will Sealink pained on her hull
In June of 1972,
From June 1974 to the end of 1975
A New Name:
On January 1, 1979 the vessel was registered
to Sealink U.K. Ltd. Thus the ex TSS Dover, resumed operations on the Irish sea
route before returning to
The end of
On the November 25, 1981,
On March 6 the long voyage to from Limassol to
In 1993 the Tuxedo Royale was replaced in
Tuxedo Royale’s Funnel
While she was laid up, the Tuxedo Princess was
sold to a Turkish ship breaker. However, on January 6, 2009 the ex TSS Dover
was moved from her location in Able Seaton to Able Central Quay at
Middlesborough just below the Transporter Bridge, this was to allow Able UK to
move the controversial US Navy ‘ghost ships’ to be moved across the
basin to allow for the arrival of another controversial vessel, the French
aircraft carrier Clemenceau. Absolute Leisure subsequently went bust and the
ownership of the vessel ceded to Able
At the time of writing the TSS Dover, AKA Tuxedo Royale is now owned by Able UK awaits her fate and hopefully a bright future with the newly formed Dover Steam Ship Company who has great plans for restoring her to her original beauty!
However sadly in May 2011 vandals boarded the ship and removed/damaged vital fittings from the machinery deck. This caused a large ingression of water, which initially caused her to list quite heavily to starboard and from the stern she gradually settled to the bottom in a more or less upright position. Currently at high tide her car deck is awash, which means the machinery deck is under water most of the time. However, she will be righted and cleaned up and her restoration will be continued. I suggest that you read the Dover Steam Ship Company Newsletters which are online. See the link below.
She is seen here listing in May 2011 after vandals attacked the ship
Tuxedo Royale is seen laid up in 2011
369 Ft – 112.47 m
57 Ft – 17.37 ,m
12.8 Ft- 3.9 m
4 Pametrada steam turbines with double reduction gear
1,000 Passenger, 200 Cars
Visit the online TSS Dover Newsletter
If you are interested in joining the TSS Dover
Restoration Campaign, why not join this remarkable foundation. Contact
Join us? Then visit: www.tssdover.co.uk/html/join_us.htm.
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Commenced in the passenger Shipping Industry in May 1960
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Photographs on ssmaritime and associate pages are by the author or from the author’s private collection. In addition there are some images that have been provided by Shipping Companies and private photographers or collectors. Credit is given to all contributors. However, there are some photographs provided to me without details regarding the photographer/owner concerned. I hereby invite if owners of these images would be so kind to make them-selves known to me (my email address may be found on www.ssmaritime.com only), in order that due credit may be given. I know what it is like, I have seen a multitude of my own photographs on other sites, yet these individuals either refuse to provide credit or remove them when asked, knowing full well that there is no legal comeback when it comes to the net. However, let us show these charlatans up and do the right thing at all times and give credit where credit is due!
This notice covers all pages, although, and I have done my best to ensure that all photographs are duly credited and that this notice is displaced on each page, that is, when a page is updated!
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