ON the often stormy route across the North Sea between Esbjerg, the Danish port on the west coast of Jutland, and Harwich, in Essex, a daily service is maintained by the United Steamship Company of Copenhagen. The passage in either direction occupies twenty-three to twenty-four hours, with fast train connexions at either end, Esbjerg being linked by rail with Copenhagen and Harwich with London. The vessels may aptly be described as “all-purpose” ships, for they carry not only passengers, but also refrigerated produce, general cargo and mails. To maintain a daily service in either direction, except Sundays, there are four vessels. They are diesel-driven and are of what is known as awning deck type.
As will be seen from the plans, there is ample and comfortable passenger accommodation. This is arranged amidships in a two-decks structure on the awning deck, with further cabins in the ’tween decks for first-class passengers and accommodation for third-class passengers towards the after end. The promenade deck contains the lounge, smoking-room and a comfortable music-room. The first-class dining saloon is in the upper ’tween decks just forward of amidships. The crew is accommodated in the forecastle. There are two masts, round which are grouped 2-tons, 3-tons and 6-tons derricks. The profile is completed by a graceful raking funnel, two pole masts, a straight stem and a counter stern.
The England is the newest ship of the fleet and was completed in April 1932. She has accommodation for 108 first-class and 82 third-class passengers. Her four cargo holds carry 94,500 cubic feet of cargo, of which 51,260 cubic feet are refrigerated. She has a deadweight tonnage of 1,750 and gross tonnage of 2,767, the dimensions being 306 ft 3 in by 44 ft 2 in by 25 ft 11 in. For her size she is fast, being able to run at about 15½ knots in loaded condition when drawing 18 ft 2 in of water and using 13 tons of oil every 24 hours. Propulsion is by two Burmeister & Wain four-cycle single-acting engines, each having six cylinders 21.68 in diameter and 35.43 in stroke, 3,140 bhp being developed at 195 revolutions of the screw. Electricity is used throughout for auxiliary purposes.