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Watching the Ships Go By

The butter boat used to go past our front room window.

Photo of Great Aunt May 1976

Great Aunt May1976

I think I’ve told you before that my house overlooked the River Tyne at Wallsend, not too far from Swan Hunter’s yard (where the cranes are coming down as I write). One ship that came past regularly in the early 1960s was ‘The Butter Boat’, as it went up the Tyne to its berth in Newcastle. I think it was so named because it came from Denmark loaded with butter and bacon and I also think it had ‘Lurpak’ written in huge letters on the side. Can anyone tell me if my memory is correct?

The other reason why this boat sticks in my memory is that my much loved Great Aunt May used to travel on it to visit her relations in Denmark. This seemed to me to be terribly exotic but I never found out anything else about that side of the family. She had a wonderful collection of dolls dressed in Danish costumes and gave one to me once. It was a beautiful tiny thing in a plastic box and she was dressed in wonderfully coloured clothes with lots of lace.

One day I’ll do a family history and trace back my exotic Danish connection!

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