Captain Barry Thompson (42-45) recalls the NCP in his time
Barry Thompson (42-45), who lives in New Zealand, has recently completed a memoir for his grandchildren. Earlier in 2017 he sent us the text relating to his time leading up to, and while at, the Nautical College during World War 11. It is too long to be reproduced as such here but the attached scanned files may be of interest.
“Barry Thompson, a Londoner born on 4 July 1928, was brought up with a love of the sea and some experience in small boats in the South of England. Leaving Pangbourne in 1945 Barry commenced his apprenticeship with Port Line in cargo ships just after the end of the Second World War and later joined P & O as a junior officer.
He served in P & O cargo and passenger ships in all ranks including brief periods as Staff Captain and In Command, marrying a Kiwi in 1962. Soon after he ‘swallowed the anchor’ and settling in New Zealand where he enjoyed family life helping to bring up their two daughters.
After 18 months in commerce learning the business of steel importing and sales, he returned to the maritime industry in 1964 to become a marine surveyor, shortly afterwards started his own surveying firm. In due course it developed successfully and Barry was appointed the Auckland Lloyd’s Agent covering the two largest ports in the country.
Selling his business in 1991 he became a Director and Consultant Surveyor with GAB Robins New Zealand Ltd — then a member of the worldwide Société Générale de Surveillance (SGS Group) — until he retired from full time employment to act as a Marine Consultant to the insurance and shipping industries in New Zealand.
Barry is a Fellow of the Nautical Institute and an Honorary Fellow of the International Institute of Marine Surveying. His book, Surveying Marine Damage, UK published in 1994, has become a standard text. He has written two other books, now out of print, on the History of the New Zealand Coastguard and on the colloquial language of the British Merchant Seaman.
During most of his seafaring years, and later after coming ashore, he served with the Naval Reserve. He is a Freeman of the City of London and a Liveryman of the Honourable Company of Master Mariners. For a while he was Deputy Chairman of the NZ Committee of Lloyd’s Register of Shipping and a consultant surveyor appointed by the Salvage Association.
With an interest in sail training and youth development he has served on the Boats’ Committee of the New Zealand Outward Bound School, as Deputy Chairman (now a Vice Patron) of the Spirit of Adventure Trust and was, for about fifteen years, a volunteer relieving master of New Zealand’s two principal sail-training ships which the Trust has operated.”