One of the last remaining steam powered tugs in South Africa is the JR More which is moored at the Port Natal Maritime Museum in Durban, having been handed over on 11 July 1982. I first saw her in January 1987 when she was being looked after by the Port Natal Branch of the World Ship Society. Our local WSS branch spent many hours on this vessel exploring what she had to offer.
Sadly, she is oil fired as opposed to a coal burner and was amongst the last tugs in our waters which was in service which had a conventional engine. A few years after I first saw her she was taken over by the newly established Maritime Museum, the long derelict RA Leigh was removed from the mooring alongside and the SAS Durban was put in her place. The museum, which I last saw in the mid 90’s was very active and had 3 vessels on display (JR More, SAS Durban and Ulundi, a pilot tug). The More and her fellow museum ships were undergoing constant maintenance and assuming things didn’t turn sour, had found a suitable resting place.
During the 2007 a visitor to the museum reported that photography at the museum, and in the harbour was strictly VERBOTEN! and getting any sort of updated photographs was very difficult under the circumstances. At one point the SAS Durban took on a list and she had to be tended to and I believe her condition is very poor.
(Photo of JR More after drydocking by Terry Hutson), Last 3 photos courtesy of Shelly Baker.
Technical details of the JR More.
© DRW. 2004-2018. Created 29/12/2004. Updated 24/11/2007, Moved to blog 23/08/2014