SS Orontes

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search

SS Orontes.jpg
SS Orontes in Tilbury Docks, circa 1957, about to sail for Sydney on a single-class voyage with (mainly) migrant passengers on the Ten Pound Poms scheme.
United Kingdom
Name: SS Orontes
Owner: Orient Line (P & O)
Port of registry: United Kingdom Tilbury, Essex, United Kingdom
  • England - Australia (1929-1940)
  • England - Australia (1948-1962)
Builder: Vickers Armstrong Ltd. at Barrow-in-Furness, England
Maiden voyage: June 1929
Refit: 1947-1948
  • Code Letters and radio callsign GBXM
  • ICS Golf.svgICS Bravo.svgICS X-ray.svgICS Mike.svg
Fate: Scrapped at Valencia, Spain in 1962
General characteristics
Type: Passenger
Tonnage: 20,097 grt
Length: 664 ft (202 m)
Beam: 75 ft 2 in (22.91 m)
Draft: 29 ft 8 in (9.04 m)
Installed power: 2 steam turbines, 20,000 shaft horsepower (15,000 kW)
Propulsion: 2 screws
Speed: 20 knots (37 km/h)
  • 1st: 500 passengers
  • 3rd: 1,112 passengers
  • Total: 1,612 passengers

SS Orontes was a passenger ship owned by Orient Line.

The ship was built in 1929 by Vickers Armstrong at Barrow-in-Furness, England.

Its sister ships were Orama (II), Orford, Oronsay, and Otranto (II). Orontes was the last of the "Orama" Class and great effort was taken to make the public rooms of Orontes the best of this class. The name had previously belonged to the RMS Orontes, an earlier ship owned by the Orient Line.


Orontes maiden voyage was a Mediterranean Cruise in June 1929. From 1929 to 1940, it served on the England to Australia route. It carried the England cricket team on the way to the Bodyline tour in 1932.[1]

During World War II, Orontes became a troopship, serving that role from 1940 to 1947.

At the end of World War II Orontes was used to return Prisoners of War from Australian camps back to Europe.

The ship was refitted as a single class passenger ship at Thornycroft from 1947 to 1948 . It served on the England to Australia route from 1948 to 1962.[citation needed] In March 1958, Orontes was involved in a collision with SS Empire Baltic in the River Thames.[2] The Orontes was scrapped at Valencia, Spain in 1962.[3]


  1. ^ McKinstry, Leo (2007-09-14), "When cynicism eclipsed chivalry in sport", Daily Telegraph, London
  2. ^ ORONTES (1929) (PDF), P&O Line, archived from the original (PDF) on 9 January 2007, retrieved 5 March 2009
  3. ^ "Orontes (1146027)". Miramar Ship Index. Retrieved 26 November 2018.

Further reading[edit]

  • Geddes, FL (1948-06-24), "The Reconditioned "Orontes"", Shipbuilding and Shipping Record: 774 - article about the post-war refit
  • McCart, Neil (1987), Passenger Ships of the Orient Line, P. Stephens, ISBN 978-0-85059-891-9