RMS Transvaal Castle was an ocean liner built in 1961 by John Brown & Company in Scotland for the United Kingdom-based Union-Castle Line for their service between Southampton and Durban. In 1966 she was sold to the South Africa-based Safmarine and renamed S.A. Vaal for further service on the same route. Following cessation of the service between the UK and South Africa in 1977 the ship was sold to Carnival Cruise Lines and rebuilt in Japan as the cruise shipSS Festivale, re-entering service in 1978. In 1996 she was sold to Dolphin Cruise Line and renamed IslandBreeze. The vessel spent some of her time under Dolphin Cruise Line ownership on charter to Thomson Cruises. In 1998 the ship was sold to Premier Cruise Line and renamed SS Big Red Boat III. Following the bankruptcy of Premier Cruise Line 2000, Big Red Boat III was laid up until 2003 when she was sold to the scrappers in Alang, India. The ship became The Big Red Boat for her final voyage to the scrapyard.
Concept and construction
RMSTransvaal Castle was the last in a series of three similar but not identical ships planned by the Union-Castle Line in the 1950s as replacements for the company's oldest ships , and . The Transvaal Castle was preceded by the (delivered in 1958) and (delivered in 1960). Unlike her earlier near-sisters the Transvaal Castle was planned as a one-class... Read More