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Caledon Shipbuilding & Engineering Co. Ltd

Scotland’s Shipyards -

As we travel up from the firth of Forth, the next shipbuilding centre was based in the River Tay. The City of Dundee had a number of significant shipyards with the Caledon yard being the most well known.

Named after a local Earl, the yard began as a foundry then a shipyard was opened in 1876. With a small steam yacht built for the said Earl named Banshee. They became well known for the building of nice cargo liners in the 4,500 to 6,000 tons range. After the First World War they were building ships up to 10,000 tons.

They made an important contribution to the war effort from 1939 to 1946 building Frigates & Corvettes along with many Empire class vessels and an Escort aircraft carrier named Activity.

After World War Two the Dundee yard became well known for building high class passenger/cargo liners. They were taken over in 1968 by the Leith yard of Henry Robb, then began trading as Robb Caledon shipbuilders Ltd.

They continued building fine ships‘s when the order book started to run dry, as part of the British Shipbuilders Quango.

The last ships built at Dundee were two ships that were part of the large Polish Government order that had been shared (unevenly) around the British Shipyards at the time.

Koscierzyna and Bytom both of 3,003grt, were finished and the yard closed in 1981.

Sad end for a fine old shipyard, as it would be for so many shipyards around the British Isles at the time.

Interesting to note that this is yet another shipyard that has a well laid out information website funded by Friends of Dundee City Archives. You can visit the site here.

There is still nothing of the sort from Edinburgh Council or from any of the Trusts featuring websites on Leith or Edinburgh.



Golden Bay II leaves New Zealand for the final time, she was built at the Robb Caledon yard in Dundee in 1979 and now under new owners she is still going strong.

(Photograph was sent to me by Tony Skilton who was First Engineer on her for many years.)


The original Golden Bay had been built at the Henry Robb Shipyard at Leith in 1953 as Ship No 430

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