Osman Pacha – The last Shoreham built square rigged ship

Article written by Ken Wilcox

`Making a passage` etching A. Briscoe c. 1890.


By the latter half of the 19th century the continuing industrial revolution in iron and steam shipbuilding had resulted in the decline of large wooden commercial ship construction. However from 1880 to 1890 the British and Commonwealth Merchant fleet still made up 50% of the world`s sailing ship tonnage and when steam ships were also considered then the combined fleet constituted some 60% of the world`s registered tonnage. Britain would remain the world’s principal maritime nation until the end of World War II. It is into this climate of maritime dominance the Osman Pacha was launched on a spring tide in February 1878. The launch marked a watershed in Shoreham`s long commercial and naval ship building history which had been one of the most important economic elements of the port’s activity since the mediaeval period. As the new century dawned the artisan`s skills turned to smaller recreational yacht building and the memories of Osman Pacha ebbed away……

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Longcroft: a history in postcards

J.B.Balley, ship builder and creator of Swiss Gardens built a grand house for himself in Longcroft field on the corner of Hebe and Southdown roads then later sold both to Edward Goodchild (previously landlord of Brunswick Arms) in the early 1860’s. As the main photo shows it became Queens School for girls and appears as such in the directories between 1920 and the start of WW2. The centre bay window column was added after 1898 – the rest of the houses up Southdown Road are out of shot to the right. You can just make out the top of the greenhouse shown on the 1912 map.

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