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No. 534 and the formation of Cunard White Star Limited

  • Francis E. Hyde

Abstract

The events between 1925 and 1934, leading ultimately to the merger of The Cunard Steam Ship Co. Ltd and White Star Line (Oceanic Steam Navigation Co. Ltd), are extremely complicated and difficult to follow. This arises from the fact that there were three areas of controversy each impinging on the other, involving at times separate and at other times joint, matters for negotiation. Firstly there was the growing involvement of the White Star Line with the mounting financial difficulties of the Royal Mail group of which this company had become a part, difficulties which were undoubtedly aggravated by the adverse trading conditions at the beginning of the 1930s. Secondly, there was the promotion of policy by The Cunard Steam Ship Co. to inaugurate a weekly two-ship express service acrosss the Atlantic, a policy which could be implemented only by putting into service ships of great size and power. Finally there was, at a somewhat later stage in the proceedings, participation of government departments and the provision of government finance as instruments in the salvation of White Star and in the building of the new large Cunarders.

Keywords

Fellow Director Vote Trustee Preference Share Deferred Certificate Express Service 
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Notes

  1. 12.
    N. Davies and A. M. Bourn, ‘Lord Kylsant and the Royal Mail’, Business History XIV, No. 2, July 1972, 103–23.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
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  3. 17.
    CP, Provisions of the Scheme of Arrangement; P. N. Davies and A. M. Bourn, op. cit., loc. cit.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. 18.
    Ibid.; the moratorium was agreed pending the preparation of the Scheme of Arrangement.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. 19.
  6. 20.
    Eaves, op. cit., under 1935.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. 22.
  8. 24.
  9. 27.
    CP, Note of interview between Sir Frederick Lewis and Sir Percy Bates, July 1930.Google Scholar
  10. 28.
    Runciman’s invitation was dated 24 July 1930.Google Scholar
  11. 30.
    J. Lister under date July 1930.Google Scholar
  12. 32.
  13. 33.
    CP, Correspondence, Sir Percy Bates to Sir Ashley Sparks, 28 July 1930; BM, July 1930.Google Scholar
  14. 34.
  15. 35.
  16. 36.
  17. 37.
  18. 38.
  19. 39.
    CP, Memorandum by Sir Percy Bates of interview, 30 July 1930.Google Scholar
  20. 40.
  21. 41.
  22. 42.
    Ibid., BM, August 1930.Google Scholar
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    CP, Correspondence, S. J. Lister to Sir Percy Bates, 30 July 1930, referring to Sir Percy’s statements.Google Scholar
  24. 46.
    CP, Correspondence, Sir Percy Bates to Walter Runciman, 31 July 1930.Google Scholar
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    CP, Correspondence, Sir Ashley Sparks to Sir Percy Bates 28 July; Sir Percy Bates to Sir Ashley Sparks, 5 August 1930.Google Scholar
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  27. 52.
  28. 54.
    CP, Correspondence, Sir Percy Bates to Walter Runciman, 15 October 1930.Google Scholar
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  30. 67.
  31. 68.
  32. 69.
  33. 70.
    CP, H. Eaves, op. cit., under 1928; the members of the committee were Sir Aubrey Brocklebank, Bart, Chairman, Engineer Vice-Admiral R. W. Skelton, The Hon C. A. Parsons, Andrew Lainge, A. C. F. Henderson, G. McL. Paterson, Sir Thos Bell, Commander C. W. Craven, R.N., Andrew Hamilton, John Austin and J. Rennie, Secretary. This committee held meetings on 6 December 1928 and 11 January 1929 but no definite decisions were reached. Douglas Lobley in The Cunarders (1969), p. 46, states that Queen Mary ‘the first ship on the drawing board, grew in sketch form during 1926’.Google Scholar
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  35. 78.
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  37. 84.
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  39. 88.
    D. Lobley, The Cunarders, op. cit., and other official Cunard publications.Google Scholar
  40. 89.
    CP, Chancellor of Exchequer to Sir Percy Bates, 1 March 1932.Google Scholar
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  42. 98.
    CP, Lord Weir’s report; Sir Percy Bates to Lord Essendon, 28 February 1933.Google Scholar
  43. 99.
    CP, Lord Essendon to Sir Percy Bates, 20 February 1933.Google Scholar
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    CP, Mediation note on the North Atlantic problem; Lord Weir to Sir Percy Bates, 14 March 1933.Google Scholar
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  46. 102.
  47. 104.
  48. 107.
  49. 108.
  50. 109.
  51. 110.
  52. 115.
  53. 117.
    A. Bates to Lord Weir, 10 June 1933; note of interview between Sir Percy Bates and Lord Weir, 12 June 1933.Google Scholar
  54. 119.
  55. 124.

Copyright information

© Francis E. Hyde 1975

Authors and Affiliations

  • Francis E. Hyde
    • 1
  1. 1.University of LiverpoolUK

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