Ship Details


Steel Twin Screw Steamer, 1,987 hp.



Built In


12,041g 6,697n

Built By


536.2 x 63.3 x 34.3


Orient Steam Navigation Co.Ltd., reg. Glasgow. 1915 May: Troop transport. 1917 Mar.14: Damaged by torpedo attack near Eddystone. 6 dead. Run ashore in Cawsand Bay, refloated and towed to Devonport for repairs. 1919 Jan: Troop transport to Australia. 1933: Refitted as one-class ship. 1936 Oct.: Broken up at Bo'ness.



In July of 1915 My grandfather, William Love Kirkwood, a medical officer with the rank of Major, sailed on the "Orsova" which had been requisitioned as a troop ship. He arrived in Suez on the 11th August, two days after the Battle of Lone Pine. In June of 1919 he was awarded an O.B.E. for his services.

My father aged 19 years arrived in Freemantle Australia on board the S S "OTRANTO" having departed from the Port of LONDON 7th JANUARY 1928. As a young man he worked with others on harvesting the Wheatfields of Australia finishing up in BRISBANE when he boarded the "ORSOVA" 3 rd Class arriving 29th JULY 1931 at TILBURY DOCKS, LONDON England via SYDNEY, MELBOURNE, FREEMANTLE, COLOMBO, PORT SAID,NAPLES, TOULON and GIBRALTER.

My grandparents, Aubrey and Gladys Ascott sailed on the SS Orsova from London to Melbourne as emigrants to Australia. They departed from London on 2 April 1927 arriving in Fremantle on 3 May 1927. The voyage was effectively their honeymoon having married on 31 March 1927. On arrival in Australia they spent much of their early years working as a labourer and housekeeper on properties in the Kiewa Valley in Victoria before moving to Sydney.

My Dad left London 25.7.1925 on the Orsova bound for Brisbane via Fremantle where they were held up re a 3 week strike..Continued on but disembarked in Melbourne and given a 5 pound refund.

There was a "Grand Concert" on board 20th January 1914, in the Med., where there was a violin solo by Mr. Merrells. This was, possibly, my 2nd great grandpa. Does anyone have a Christian name, please.

My grandmother Florence Rance sailed on the Orsova from Brisbane Australia to London in April 1911. She had been in Australia working as a cook since 1908 and lived in Glenn Innes. I'm interested in learning more of her time there.

Travelled from Durban, South Africa to Sydney, Australia in December 1971. Would like to know what date we disembarked so we can celebrate 50 years in our chosen country please.

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