SERVING in the SUEZ CANAL ZONE of EGYPT until 1956

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Album of Photos taken in the Suez Canal Zone.  Page 13


The Troopship 'Somersetshire'.
I’m not sure if the ‘Somersetshire’ ever did the Egypt run but do know that she was trooping
to East Africa during the Mau Mau troubles in 1953 so probably went through the Suez Canal.
I have included this photo out of interest because all Suez Vets must have sung that song where
she is mentioned.  I'm confident you remember it.
*See the footnote at the bottom of this page.


Burnt-out NAAFI, Ismailia. October 1951.
photo supplied by Ray Gibbs.

Rear of NAAFI after the fire.
photo supplied by Ray Gibbs.

Army patrol in Ismailia. October 1951.
photo supplied by Ray Gibbs.


In Abu Sueir village.
photo supplied by George Richardson.

By the Elephant again.
photo supplied by David Parker.

Mobile shop, possibly RAF Fayid.


Not sure where this is. Perhaps you can help?
photo supplied by Eddie Fidler.

Mount Shubra through the peri-wire at RAF Abyad.
photo supplied by Dick Woolley.

On the top of Mount Shubra.
photo supplied by Mick Pestell.


Smokey Joes cafe, RAF Ismailia.
photo supplied by Wiliam Latchford.

Luxury accomodation. Tent 4, RAF Abyad.
photo supplied by Wiliam Latchford.

RAF Fayid signs.
photo supplied by Mick Pestell.


A roundabout in Moascar.
photo supplied by Ray Gibbs.

Train passing RAF Abu Sueir.
photo supplied by Ray Gibbs.

Refuelling a Vampire. (With blood?)
photo supplied by Ray Gibbs.


photo supplied by Norman Clarke.

photo supplied by Norman Clarke.

photo supplied by Norman Clarke.
More shops in Fayid Shopping Village.



Near the entrance.
photo supplied by Dennis Bostridge.

Main Gate, RAF El Hamra.
photo supplied by Dennis Bostridge.

RAF El Hamra fire-power.
photo supplied by Dennis Bostridge.


VIP Car bay, HQ 205 Group (RAF).
photo supplied by Dick Woolley.

Staff Car of Air Officer Commanding 205 Group
photo supplied by Dick Woolley.

Station Church, RAF Abyad.
photo supplied by Norman Brown.


Part of 205 Group tented area, RAF Abyad.
photo supplied by John Grant.


Inside one of the 205 Group tents.
photo supplied by John Grant.

Tent de-bugging exercise.
photo supplied by Dick Woolley.


Bedford 3 tonner, Troop Carrying Vehicle....

....and one of the later models.

RAF Standard Vanguard at Port Said docks.


The Sweet Water Canal at Ismailia.
photo supplied by Ray Gibbs.

RAF Abu Sueir bus.
photo supplied by Ray Gibbs.

The 'Oratavia' passing the Blue Lagoon.
photo supplied by Ray Gibbs.

* Footnote re the 'Somersetshire.'
Some time after including the photo of the 'Somersetshire' and my remarks about the ship at the top of this page I received the following e-mail.

Hi Charlie - a very interesting collection.
Page 13 - I can confirm that 'Somersetshire' did do the Egypt run - she took me to Port Said from Liverpool in about April 1953.  She had been on a Bibby Line cruise but was hastily "re-claimed" as a troopship for two trips when Lytham was bursting at the seams and the Windrush and another troopship, I don’t know the name of, already had full loads allocated and nothing else was due in for about 3 weeks.  All three sailed about the same time and the files of RAF and Army marching from the station to the quayside off train after train from the embarkation holding camps brought Liverpool
to a standstill.
Lovely trip as we had to travel in civvies as she technically was not a troopship at that specific date and had the cruise crew on board to look after us. There was an undersea earthquake off Turkey resulting in horrendous choppy cross seas and the journey took 13 days instead of the planned 10, as
a result most on board were very sea-sick.
Somersetshire was a fascinating ship - apparently twice torpedoed in the same area they told us - you could look along the starboard side from the stern and admire the "banana" curve that had resulted.
Thanks for the memories!
 
Stephen Church (ex RAF)
(One of the yobs in the Deversoir Christmas Party picture, page 2).



Links to other pages of the Suez Canal Zone Photo Album: Click on the page number.
1  ||  2  ||  3  ||  4  ||  5  ||  6  ||  7  ||  8  ||  9  ||  10  ||  11  ||  12  ||  14  ||  15 || 16 || 17 || 18 || 19 || 20 || 21 ||   

Also on the  'Now and Then'  page and on the  'That Palm Tree'  page.

My thanks to the Suez Veterans who supplied the photos to produce this Photo Album.
© Charlie Delta. October 2004.  Footnote added 23rd October 2007.
Page revised: © May 2009.