Troop Ships

Discussion in 'The War at Sea' started by AJhoward, Sep 15, 2018.

  1. AJhoward

    AJhoward Member

    In the tropics, were the troop holds that were below the water line cooler than the ones above the water line?


    P.S. I'm a new member. I've been interested in WWII history since I was five.
  2. TTH

    TTH Senior Member

    I have not heard that they were cooler. Don't forget, in the lower decks you may be further away from the sun but you're also closer to the engines.
  3. CL1

    CL1 116th LAA and 92nd (Loyals) LAA,Royal Artillery Patron

    I should first like to draw the attention of the House to the question of the ventilation in the "Empire Fowey." My constituent was sleeping in H.2.B deck, which is at waterline level, and all the scuttles were, therefore, permanently closed, and men were sleeping in cots side by side in tiers of three in blocks of 18. Most men preferred to sleep on deck. My constituent says of the morning after: Entering troop decks after a night in the open has to be experienced to be believed. He goes on to describe the filthy smell of sweltering humanity which was quite overpowering even with the majority of the men sleeping on deck. And he invites us to: Imagine this situation … with the majority sleeping below owing to bad weather conditions in the Indian Ocean. I want next to draw the attention of the House to the question of the 1893recreation space in the ship as it appeared to my constituent. He says: There is one recreation room for all troops below the rank of corporal. Well over 1,000 personnel, I believe. At a rough estimate, I should think the recreation room could cope with 150–200 actually seated. The remainder sit on the floor. If the weather is fine the deck can be used. Cattle would be better catered for. The final subject on which I wish to quote from my constituent is the most important one raised. I should like to give my constituent's impression before I comment. He says: And now for the final ghastly subject of food. Never in my whole life have I encountered such 'swill'. The menus indicate a fair choice; but the quantity and quality— There words fail him.
    TROOPSHIP "EMPIRE FOWEY" (CONDITIONS) (Hansard, 25 November 1955)
    PackRat likes this.
  4. AJhoward

    AJhoward Member

    Last April I visited the SS Lane Victory, a WWII cargo ship/museum in Long Beach, CA. I was the only visitor, so I had the run of the ship. I wandered up and down ladders, through hatches, from one end of the ship to the other. Just before I left, I almost climbed a crow's nest, but decided to save that for my next visit. I'll post iPhone photos later. The ship was noisy, as steel expanded in the sun, and the ship brushed against rubber-covered moorings.

    Since the lower troop holds were near the engines, do you think they were noisier than the upper ones?
  5. CL1

    CL1 116th LAA and 92nd (Loyals) LAA,Royal Artillery Patron

    I would imagine that they were very uncomfortable on a voyage
    no privacy
    sea sickness
  6. Tricky Dicky

    Tricky Dicky Don'tre member

    Dont forget

    lacking fresh air

  7. Ron Goldstein

    Ron Goldstein WW2 Veteran WW2 Veteran Patron

    Also very scary when you were below decks and you could hear the noise of shell fire going on above :(

    SDP likes this.

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