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SS St Julien at the Banana Dock in Dieppe c. 1939

SS St Julien at the Banana Dock in Dieppe c. 1939


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Filename: 93.jpg

Size: 2720 x 1960 (1.1MB)

Date: 3rd March 2014

Source: STEAM Museum of the GWR

© STEAM Museum of the GWR

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SS St Julien at the Banana Dock in Dieppe c. 1939

SS St Julien is pictured here at the Banana Dock in Dieppe during her service as a hospital ship. St Julien was built in 1925 as a vessel to serve the GWRs Weymouth route, which she did until requisitioned by the government on the 9th September 1939 to work as a troop ship. During the following month the steamer was sent to Southampton to be converted into Hospital Ship No. 29 and she began work ferrying casualties from France back to Britain, from where they would be taken by train to hospitals around the country. St Julien took part in the evacuation of Dunkirk, crossing the channel 6 times in an attempt to reach troops, where, despite being clearly identified as a hospital ship, she came under enemy fire. She survived Dunkirk and subsequent service as a hospital ship in the Mediterranean, and at the end of the war SS St Julien returned to operation on the Weymouth Service

STEAM - Museum of the Great Western Railway

Media ID 19938921

© STEAM Museum of the GWR

Dock Ship Weymouth Dieppe Dunkirk Evacuation Steamer


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> Places > Docks > Other Docks

> The Railway at War > Second World War


EDITORS COMMENTS
This print showcases the SS St Julien, a remarkable hospital ship, docked at the Banana Dock in Dieppe circa 1939. Originally built in 1925 to serve the GWR's Weymouth route, this vessel played an integral role during wartime. On September 9th, 1939, she was requisitioned by the government and transformed into a troop ship. In October of that same year, SS St Julien underwent conversion in Southampton to become Hospital Ship No. 29. Her noble duty involved transporting wounded soldiers from France back to Britain for further medical care via train connections across the country. The steamer fearlessly participated in the historic evacuation of Dunkirk, making six perilous crossings amidst enemy fire while clearly marked as a hospital ship. Despite facing grave danger during her service at Dunkirk and later as a hospital ship in the Mediterranean theater of war, SS St Julien emerged unscathed. At war's end, she resumed operations on the Weymouth Service once again. This poignant image encapsulates not only an extraordinary vessel but also pays homage to all those who served aboard her and risked their lives to save others. It serves as a powerful reminder of courage and resilience amidst tumultuous times in history.

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