This page is part of © FOTW Flags Of The World website

British shipping companies (S)

Last modified: 2016-06-03 by rob raeside
Keywords: sheaf steam | shell | silver | map: africa | pg | sally | sfms | ws&co | handshake |
Links: FOTW homepage | search | disclaimer and copyright | write us | mirrors



See also:

Silver Line Ltd.

Silver Line Ltd. houseflag image by Jarig Bakker, based on the website of the National Maritime Museum

From the website of the National Maritime Museum, the house flag of the Silver Line Ltd., London. A rectangular blue and white triband with the word 'SILVER' in blue across the centre stripe. The flag is made of a wool and synthetic fibre bunting. It has a cotton hoist and is machine sewn."
Jarig Bakker, 28 August 2004

Silver Lines Ltd. Formed 1925 by Stanley & John Thompson Ltd. with early sources showing the flag under their name. Most showed the bands as being equal and some, principally Talbot-Booth (1936) showed a silver band with black letters. Harnack in his "Ships & Shipping" series showed both versions in different sections. Talbot-Booth in 1942 noted that the silver funnel had recently become white and at the same time, without comment changed the flag band to white and lettering to blue.
Neale Rosanoski, 17 March 2005

Silver Line Ltd. houseflag image by António Martins-Tuválkin

In 1956 the company amalgamated with and absorbed Dene Shipping Co. Ltd. and apparently at first used their livery being a flag of 5 diagonal bands of blue and white from upper hoist to lower fly which is flown by the LJC liveries chart of 1966.
Neale Rosanoski, 17 March 2005

Silver Line Ltd. houseflag image by Jarig Bakker

Loughran (1979) however shows a different version of 7 white and blue diagonal bands from lower hoist to upper fly. Whichever one of these was correct, and it was probably the LJC chart as its funnel showing bands sloping the same way as the flag is confirmed by ship photos, there was a further change to white with a panel of the LJC version flag between top and bottom further blue panels slightly separated by the field:

Silver Line Ltd. houseflag image by António Martins-Tuválkin

The date of adoption is not known but it is noted in an article in the February 1969 "Marine News" of the World Ship Society. The company itself was taken over in 1974 as part of Shipping Industrial Holdings. It disappearing from Lloyds Shipowners in the latter 1980s but surfaced again a decade later as a subsidiary of the Vlasov Group (now V. Ships Group). It has since disappeared again.
Neale Rosanoski, 17 March 2005

Dene Line Ltd. houseflag image from B.J. Pullen, 24 October 2015 (cropped and flipped)

This flag was found in Plymouth. It has the word "HOUIE" written on the seam, but I cannot find any information about it.
B.J. Pullen, 24 October 2015

Apparently that design was adopted from Dene Shipping at the 1956 merger, and later it was changed to different versions. I agree that this one seems related, but since this flag has basically the same design, it would more likely be older, and thus might be a Dene Line flag?
Peter Hans van den Muijzenberg, 21 February 2016


Silvertown Services Shipping Ltd.

Silvertown Services Shipping, Ltd. houseflag image by Jarig Bakker, 29 December 2004

Silvertown Services Shipping Ltd., London - five horizontal stripes of white and blue; red "SS".
From Scott, R.M., The Caltex book of Flags and Funnels, Capetown, Caltex Africa Ltd. (1959).
Jarig Bakker, 29 December 2004

Silvertown Services Shipping Ltd. A Tate & Lyle short lived company which was merged with an associate in 1963 to form Sugar Line Ltd. This version is supported by a February 1969 Marine News article whereas Stewart 1963 shows the flag bands being equal, as does US Navy's 1961, but the latter shows what are presumably meant to be silver bands instead of white.
Neale Rosanoski, 17 March 2005


Silvertown Telegraph Works

Silvertown Telegraph Works houseflag image from Port Cities

located by Jan Mertens, 7 February 2005, provided by London Borough Tower Hamlets

The house flag of the Silvertown Telegraph Works, a subsidiary of the India Rubber, Gutta Percha and Telegraph Works Company. The parent company was founded in 1852 by Samuel Winkworth Silver, who gave his name to the district on the north bank of the Thames. The company stopped making telegraph equipment around 1930, and eventually became part of BTR Industries (formerly the British Tyre and Rubber Company). This later merged with Siebe to become Invensys.


Wm. Sloan & Co.

[Wm. Sloan & Co. houseflag] image by Jarig Bakker, based on the website of the National Maritime Museum

From the website of the National Maritime Museum, the house flag of William Sloan and Co., Glasgow. A rectangular blue flag with a white diamond bearing the red letters 'WS & Co'. The flag is made of a wool and synthetic fibre bunting. It has a cotton hoist and is machine sewn. A rope and toggle is attached."
Jarig Bakker, 4 September 2004

Wm. Sloan & Co. Originated 1825 as the St. Rollox Shipping Co. with sailing vessels carrying chemicals for the works at St. Rollox which was operated by an uncle of William Sloan. This company used a blue flag with the white letters "St.R" over "Co.". I have no information on the formation of William Sloan & Co. though it could have resulted from the advent of their 1st steamship in 1852 and resulted in the first Sloan flag which was a blue pennant with the white letters "W.S.Co" with the "o" being enhanced and the other letters being of equal height. This flag was apparently also associated with the St. Rollox company, presumably as managers. By Lloyds 1912 the Sampson flag is shown although Brown 1926 shows a blue pennant with the white letters "WS" but this, like the version shown by the Journal of Commerce in their 1966 chart of blue with the white letters "WS&Co", are probably incorrect.
Neale Rosanoski, 24 May 2004


Thomas Smailes & Son

[Thos. Smailes & Son houseflag] image by Ivan Sache, 25 April 2008

Lloyds Book of House Flags and Funnels (1912) shows the house flag of "Thos. Smailes & Son" (#310, p. 51), a company based in Whitby, as blue with a white "S". The company disappeared at the end of the First World War.
Ivan Sache
, 25 April 2008 


Sir William Reardon Smith & Sons Ltd.

[Sir William Reardon Smith & Sons Ltd. houseflag] image by Phil Nelson, 11 April 2000

from Stewart and Styring's Flags, Funnels and Hull Colors 1963

Sir W. Reardon Smith & Sons, Cardiff: red, a large black letter `S' (with serifs) in the centre, taking up about one third of the flag's width and four fifths of its height. Stewart and Styring's show it as `Sir William Reardon Smith & Sons Ltd.', but letter without serifs; I checked the on-line 1912 Lloyds Flags & Funnels and found this flag under No. 749 on p. 38 as `W.R. Smith & Son, Cardiff" next to No. 750 (`P. Samuel & Son, Ltd., Cardiff'), exactly the same but for the serifs. It must have been difficult to distinguish between them unless you recognized the ships of course.
Jan Mertens, 4 June 2004


British Shipping lines: continued