On the Spot – Robin Urie

Early memory: the 1937 paddle steamer Jupiter at Millport in 1957, her final season. Copyright CRSC J.T.A. Brown Collection

Robin Urie was CRSC President for the 1986-87 session and is a regular attender at our winter meetings in Glasgow. It was at a recent meeting that Stuart Craig persuaded him to become the first subject of our new On the Spot’ series. In this occasional series each of our chosen subjects will be asked the same vital questions about their interest in ships, steamers and CRSC. The answers should be revealing!


Robin, thank you for agreeing to this intense questioning. Please tell us, what is your earliest memory of sailing on a Clyde steamer?  

Robin Urie

PS Jupiter to Millport. It rained and I was worried that the boat would fill up with water.

What was the most recent sailing you took?

Waverley last weekend. First sailing of the 2017 season to Lochranza.

Holidays: Dunoon, Rothesay or Arran?


What is your favourite steamer?

King George V.

Which was Waverley’s best livery, LNER, CSP, CalMac or WSN?

Her present livery.

What was your favourite Maid (if old enough) or ‘streaker’ if young enough?

Maid of Argyll.

Jeanie Deans or Waverley?

Jeanie Deans.

A teenage Robin Urie steers MacBrayne’s Lochfyne in April 1968

A new turbine has been built on the Clyde: what would you name her?

Queen Mary 3.

What would you like to see happen on the Clyde ferry scene over the next few years?

A continuation of cruising possibilities, like Balmoral’s programme at the 2016 September weekend.

The best point-to-point route you’ve sailed on?

Oban to Lochboisdale.

Which pier would you like to see re-open?


What direction would you like to see CRSC take in the next few years?

Staying alive.

If CRSC had loads of money in the bank, what would you spend it on?

More piers.

What makes you continue your membership of the Club, year on year?

Nostalgia and inertia. Great names for new Cunarders, in fact.

What could the Club do better?

Find more younger people to join.

Oban to Lochboisdale: Robin and his brother David on MacBrayne’s Claymore in the Sound of Mull in the late 1950s

Robin often attends CRSC meetings with his father Tom, who is also a past President of the Club

Continuing cruise possibilities: Balmoral at Tarbert on 26 September 2016, with Captain David Howie on the pier, watched by Tom Urie and Robin Urie at the railing bottom left. Copyright CRSC

Favourite ‘Maid’: Maid of Argyll at Largs on 16 August 1969. Copyright photo CRSC/A.E. Bennett

Favourite steamer: King George V at Inveraray on 19 May 1973. Copyright CRSC Dr Joe McKendrick Collection

Click here to join CRSC and further your interest in Scottish shipping.

Published on 3 June 2017