Peter Ambler
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Peter Ambler - Aberdovey, Wales, 1956

The OB experience stayed with me. I attended there in 1956 for 30 days before I began my 3 yr 8 month apprenticeship as a Midshipman with Blue Funnel.

I remember, and still have, the badge awarded to me, a solid blue one, which I will show to OB attendees I meet who attended the Colorado experience.

I was living near Folkestone with my mother and twin sister and travelled by train to Charing Cross, then to Paddington for the ride to Aberdovey. I still appreciate the patience of the instructors and leaders at OB and remember with affection our overnight sailing to Bardsey Island and to Aberystwyth which was skippered by a Blue Funnel second mate, When we sailed to Bardsley the lighthouse fired rocket flares to warn the skipper not to go between the light and the land!!.

One of my class mates was a Shippam of the Shippam meat paste family and I wonder what became of him...

My 3 years and 8 months at Blue Funnel took me to some 56 countries and gave me true geographic knowledge. Passing the 2nd mates on my first attempt, I signed-on as 2nd mate on the Irvingdale , owned by Irving Oil in St. John NB Canada, to deliver the ship to them from Granton Scotland, then Irving Oil put me as 2nd mate aboad the Irvingbrook, a more modern tanker for coastal service areund Eastern Canada between St John and Montreal, which turned out to be a treacherous part of the oceans, heavy fogs, gales, ice and strong currents.

I then joined the Alcan ships, Saguenay Shipping, as 2nd mate after marrying my sweetheart I met when on Blue Funnel's North America to the Far East route, and we moved to Trinidad where I was 2nd mate on the Sunhenderson, carrying bauxite from the mines located up the Demerara River in Guiana to Port of Spain Trinidad.

I left the sea because I missed the tradition and the efficiency of Blue Funnel which was not replicated at Irving or at Saguenay, and joined an American company who moved us from Ottawa, to Brockville, to Toronto, to Sacramento Ca, then to Hayward in the San Francisco area.

Then changing companies, I was a year at General Foods, Maxwell House when they moved us to the Dallas area; where we are currently.

My hobbies are sailing and I have raced as skipper in over 1500 races. In 1995 I was 5th in the State of Texas regatta, sailing Catalina 22's.

I will look forward to re-visiting Aberdovey on my next visit to the Uk!

Kind Regards,

Peter W. A. Ambler