Dressed overall on her trials

From McKay and Springer (1999): Milford Haven - Waterway and Town

Official No:    301710    Port Number and Year: 1st in Milford, 1962

                                                                                   -   in Thistead, 1974 (T.178)

                                                                                   -   in Lemvig, 1977 (L.750)

                                                                                   -   in Greenland, 1981 (GR.8)

Description:  Steel side trawler.  Diesel electric motor vessel.

Crew: 12 men

Registered at Milford: 2 May 1962

Built: by James & Stone, Brightlingsea, in 1962.  (Yard no. 409)

Tonnage: 302.04 gross 93.06 net 

Length / breadth / depth (feet):  118 (keel)  - 121.4 / 26.6 / 15.25

Engine: 2 diesel electrics by Electrical Engineering Co. 540 bhp  11.5 kts



2 May 1962: Pembroke Fishing Co, Docks, Milford

Manager: Fred Ingram, Cairo Fishing Co. Ltd.


31 Aug 1971:  Alexander Watts, Fraserburgh, Aberdeenshire. 

(Skipper, manager and owner)



1974: P. K. Stovlbaek Partrederi, Sillersley, Denmark.


As L-750

1977: K. R. Jensen, Thyborøn, Denmark.   



1981: Sisimut Trawl ApS, Holsteinsborg, Greenland.


1993: Seafresh, New Zealand.

[See below for details of her Danish ownership and subsequent fate.]


Landed at Milford: 2 May 1962 - 29 Dec 1963; 20 Jul 1965 - 31 Aug 1966.

Skippers: A. D. Carter; Arthur W. Harvey; Jimmy Jobson, Alexander Watts


Jan 1964 - Jul 1965: Fished out of Fleetwood for 18 months with a Milford skipper and crew. 

Sep 1966:  Began sailing out of Aberdeen until sold in 1973.

Cert. Cancelled & Milford Registry Closed: 21 Mar 1973.  Vessel sold to Danish owners.

Photo by Peter Brady, Fleetwood Maritime Heritage Trust.  


Accidents and Incidents:


From the West Wales Guardian of Friday 30th March 1962:


    The Argo of Pembroke, Milford's first stern fishing trawler, successfully completed her trials this week from the Brightlingsea yard where she was built.  The new ultra modern vessel is owned by a local company whose principal is Mr. Fred J. Ingram (Junior).  She is 130ft. in length. 

    The Argo of Pembroke is to be commanded by Skipper Arthur Harvey, who with his bosun, Mr. Oliver Smith-Howells, joined the new trawler at Brightlingsea last week.


[As can be seen from the photographs, the ARGO OF PEMBROKE was not a stern trawler.]



From the West Wales Guardian of Friday 4th May 1962:



Argo of Pembroke Joins Fleet


        The Argo of Pembroke, a magnificent new 130ft. diesel electric trawler, the most advanced of her type yet built, joined the Milford Haven fleet on Wednesday — an outstanding symbol of the confidence of a young local owner in fishing's future at Milford Haven.

    The vessel is owned by the Pembroke Fishing Company, a new firm formed by Mr. Fred J. Ingram (junior), and his wife Audrey, who live at The Lilacs, Pill Green, Milford Haven.  They have demonstrated their faith in the future of Milford Haven's fishing industry by bringing to the port a vessel of which Mr. J. L. W. Kellet, general manager of her builders, Janes and Stone, of Brightlingsea, says, "She's got everything."

    The new vessel will fish the hake grounds off the West Coast of Ireland and provides a very welcome and valuable increase in the port's hake catching strength.


    The new transom-stern trawler is commanded by Milford Haven's leading "hake class" master, 49-year-old Skipper Arthur Harvey.  He took over the port's other diesel electric ship, the Atlantic Seal, last November, and has thus had several months' experience of a similar type of vessel. ..........



    "I believe that these two new ships will be able to exploit the Porcupine Bank and the "Farm" area, grounds which I surveyed for the Ministry in the trawler Boston Heron," commented Skipper Harvey, who was delighted with the performance of the "Argo" on her 13 days maiden fishing voyage from Lowestoft round to Milford.

    "I wish I had had a  ship like this ten years ago," he told the "Guardian".  "We have plenty of power — more than the straight diesels.  We shall go 200 miles out, beyond the West Irish coast where there are 250 to 300 fathoms of water.  In our 15 to 17 days trips we'll be able to exploit waters beyond the fringe of those fished by the French and Spanish vessels which have been coming there for years and still are.

    "To successfully exploit these new grounds," added Skipper Harvey, "we shall want to haul 300 to 400 kits each trip with 100 kits of hake among them."



    The Argo of Pembroke is 130ft. overall with moulded breadth of 261ft. and moulded depth of 141ft.  She is part-welded and part-rivetted, has an all aluminium wheelhouse and is laid out for starboard side fishing only.

    She has accommodation for a crew of twelve in single berth cabins along the port side of the main deck and in two and four berth cabins aft on the lower deck.  "The last word in comfort," said her crew.

    Fish room capacity is 7,900 cubic feet and fuel oil capacity about 45 tons.  The fish room is insulated with onazote and all divisions and pound boards are of good. [sic]  The Argo has an all-electric galley with its own deep freeze unit.



    The new vessel is powered by twin diesels developing 750 shaft horse-power.  An entirely new feature is the trawler's console control by the British Electrical Company — the first of its kind in a British fishing vessel.  The engines can be remotely controlled from this wheelhouse console which incorporates a special Vernier control to give exact revolutions when trawling.  The ship's service speed is 111 knots.

    The wheelhouse is equipped with all the latest navigational and fishing aids and all instruments have been positioned according to the Skipper's requirements.  The console with its steering wheel, rudder angle indicator, revolution counter, etc., is placed amidships, hard up against the wheelhouse windows.  On top of it, on the port side, is fixed the echo sounding recorder, and on the starboard side the Decca Navigator.

    A leather covered chair for the Skipper is placed close to the starboard of the console, handy to the revolution controls and the control telegraph.  Here the Argo's master can sit and control the ship's exact movements when she is trawling.  There is also an auto-pilot control which means that the new trawler can be kept on her exact course with no one at the steering wheel.





    A pleasurable old custom was revived on Milford Docks on Thursday when Mr. Fred J. Ingram (junior), Principal of the Pembroke Fishing Company, gave to the Fishermen's Relief Fund the first box of fish landed from the firm's magnificent new trawler Argo of Pembroke.

    The box, 8-stone, of inter-hake was auctioned for the firm by Mr. Howard Davies and the first bid (£12) came from Mr. Bert Tulley.  Mr. Gerald Davies (£13); Mr. Jack Davies (£13. 10s.) stepped up the price before Mr. Gerald Davies called, "Sixteen pounds."  At the next bid, £20, the box was knocked down to Mr. Maurice Marchant, Bridge Street, Haverfordwest, who in turn was handed a bottle of whiskey [sic] as a gift from the Pembroke Fishing Company.



From the West Wales Guardian of Friday 4th January 1963:


    After a splendid Christmas and New Year at sea, the trawler Argo of Pembroke on Wednesday landed a good catch of hake in a week which has been bleak indeed for the Milford fishing industry. 

    In charge of Skipper Jim Jobson, the Argo of Pembroke caught 188 kits of fish, 66 of them good quality hake.  She made an excellent £2,100 total from her 12 days voyage. 

    The only other vessel to land since Saturday was the latest addition to the fleet, the Welsh Consort.  From her maiden 16 days fishing trip, the new trawler brought in 207 kits, including 45 of hake, and grossed £1,790 on Monday.  Her master is Skipper Sid Hearne.



From the West Wales Guardian of Friday 31st January 1964:



"Forced on us"

    Milford's top ship in 1963, the Argo of Pembroke, has left the port and will be operating out of Fleetwood in future.

    Confirming this news this morning (Friday), Mr. Fred Ingram (junior), principal of the owning firm, commented: "We don't want to do this but we are just forced to because was just not paying at Milford.  The ship has consistently caught a lot of fish but we just don't get the prices at Milford.  This decision has been forced on us."



    Mr. Ingram said Skipper Arthur Harvey, of Milford, was continuing as master of the Argo and added: "The Milford members of the crew can stay with her as long as they wish to."

    The Argo of Pembroke has not landed in her home port this year.  Last year, in charge of Skipper Arthur Harvey the Argo grossed £10,000 more than any other local "hake" class trawler.

    On January 14th, in charge of Skipper James Jobson, the Argo made her first landing of 1964 at Fleetwood and grossed £2,483.

    The second trip, with Skipper Arthur Harvey at the wheel ended at Fleetwood on Wednesday and grossed £2,934 from some 500 kits, of which 100 were hake.



    News of the Argo's departure from Milford is another blow to the local industry but there is now no doubt that the Milford owners of "hake" boats are faced with a serious economic problem.

    The Welsh Fisheries hake trawler, Welsh Monarch, moved from Milford to Fleetwood in December and is now fishing with a skipper and crew from that port.  At the time Mr. W. H. Kerr said that one of her three sister ships left at Milford would follow.  Since then the Welsh Prince (Skipper Alfred Beckett) has landed one trip there last Thursday, the Milford stern-fisher Hector Gannet (Skipper Jack Scoble) made a trip into Fleetwood and her catch fetched £1,485.

    While this trend for more frequent landings by Milford trawlers in the Lancashire port continues news here is that one local trawler which has been tied up for nearly nine months, is expected to sail again within three weeks.  She is the Nobel, belonging to Merchants, Ltd., and is nearly ready for sea after re-tubing.



From the West Wales Guardian of Friday 16th October 1964:


    Welcome news for Milford fish market is that the Argo of Pembroke, former top ship at the port at present fishing from Fleetwood, will land some of her fish at Milford next year.

    The Argo, under Skipper Arthur Harvey, has had a moderate year in Fleetwood, and her owners, Milford Managements, have decided that she will fish alternately between the two ports.



From the West Wales Guardian of Friday 9th July 1965:


    Good news for Milford this week is that the hake class trawler Argo of Pembroke (Skipper Arthur Harvey), which has been sailing out of Fleetwood for some 18 months, is returning to Milford.  She left the north-west port on Thursday and will land her voyage at Milford Haven around July 21st.  The Argo is managed by Norrard Trawlers.



From the West Wales Guardian of Friday 2nd September 1966:




    A part interest in one of Milford's few remaining hake class trawlers, the Argo of Pembroke, has been sold to an Aberdeen firm and she leaves today for Scotland.

    Mr. Fred Ingram (junior), Vice-President of the Trawler Owners' Association and managing director of the owning firm (the Pembroke Fishing Company) said this morning:  "We regret the move, but it has been forced upon us by several factors."

    "In addition to the general decline in the fishing industry, costs have gone up and on top of all that there are crew shortages."

    "With construction work starting on the Gulf Refinery and other industrial sites round the Haven the already adverse situation will worsen," he added.

    He revealed that the Argo, which has been in charge of Skipper Arthur Harvey since coming to Milford, will be taken to Scotland by the local crew but will be Scottish-manned out of Aberdeen.

    The Argo  landed her maiden trip at Milford in May 1962, and in the following year was top ship in the port. 

    Throughout 1964 and part of 1965, in charge of Skipper Arthur Harvey  and with the same Milford crew, she sailed out of Fleetwood, returning to Milford in July of last year.




Courtesy Robert Kettle


From Henning Yde, of the website :


    In 1974 she was sold by A. Watt, Fraserburgh to P.K. Stovlbaek Partrederi, and renamed Sillerslev. She was later listed as owned by Kaj R. Jensen Partrederi, and registered at Thyboron, Denmark.

     In 1981 she was sold to Sisimut Trawl ApS, and renamed Sarfaq, and was registered at Holsteinsborg/Sisimut, Greenland (Danish flag). By then she was of 292 gross and 108 net registered tons, 40.75 metres length o.a., 36.05 length b.p., 8.18 metres beam, 6.23 metres depth and 4.42 metres draught. She then spent about six years laid up at Frederikshavn. She spent several years shrimping out of Greenland for a Danish company.

    She was refitted with new engines in 1988, and arrived in New Zealand in 1993. In 1994 she was shrimping outside the 200-mile exclusive economic zone, in joint ventures with independent companies, but was then laid up for nearly a year at Lyttelton. During January 1995 the shrimping gear was replaced with hoki trawling gear.

    In 1995 her owners were listed as Island Fisheries Ltd., and she was registered at Nelson. She sailed from Nelson in January 1995 in pursuit of her first catch of hoki. By 1996 she was listed as owned by New Zeafish Ltd. However, the company went into receivership in September 1997, and after a short period of trading by the receiver, she was sold to Carp Investments Ltd. (Mr. M. Kooiman).

    There being apparently no prospects of profitable employment for her or of a sale to other interests, it was decided to "cannibalise" her. Work commenced on 2nd May 1998 to fit the trawler James Cook with her trawling winches and electronics, the two vessels being moored stern-to-stern at Taranaki Street breastwork, Wellington, to facilitate the carrying out of the work. Her main engine, reduction gear, shaft alternator, tailshaft and propeller were purchased by Peter Talley as spare parts for one of his vessels, Ocean Ranger. All this equipment was new in 1988.

    On 21st July 1998 she was towed away by the tug Kupe and berthed at what has traditionally been Wellington's "graveyard" for ships, Miramar Wharf, near the airport, in Evans Bay.

    The hulk  was narrowly saved from sinking alongside her lay-up berth at Miramar Wharf, late on the evening of 29th July 2001. Her owners, Carp Investments Ltd., were formally placed in liquidation on 30th July 2001, and the company assets were placed in the hands of the Official Assignee. These "assets" comprised both Sarfaq and James Cook, but the former was obviously more of a liability!

    Tired of the problems caused by the Sarfaq, on 2nd August 2001 a special meeting of the harbour authority, Wellington Regional Council, resolved to formally declare the vessel a derelict and to give the owner two weeks to remove it from the harbour. By 10th August all interested parties had surrendered their interest in the vessel, and she became legally ownerless.

    The Wellington Harbourmaster arranged to have all oil and rubbish removed from the vessel, and this was completed by 17th August. On 28th August 2001 she was towed thirty-seven miles from Wellington by the tug Kupe and was scuttled in the early evening in 41048'S.,175000'E., about fifteen miles S.S.W. from Cape Palliser in 1,700 metres of water.


From "Moby Dick" at

The trawler SARFAQ (was) towed to the explosives dumping ground 12 miles south of Wellington harbour in Cook Strait on 28 August 2001. The Centre Port tug KUPE towed the SARFAQ on her final trip. The vessel had been laid up for some time her owners Seafresh New Zealand having experienced serious financial problems had abandoned the vessel. Having become an eyesore and a hazard the vessel was towed away and scuttled in 1700 m of water.  Prior to scuttling her main engine, reduction gear, shaft alternator, tailshaft and propeller were sold to Talley's Fisheries. These sales helped to offset the cost of $37,000 (NZ) it cost to scuttle her.


SARFAQ scuttled.

Thanks to Trawler Photos website


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