Bridge deck

view of mast at top of the ship

Bridge deck and monkey island

The bridge was manned by two of the apprentice pilots, who worked in shifts throughout the day and night, plus a master was available at all times.

The principle features of the bridge are the compass and helm used for steering the ship and the telegraphs used for signalling the engine room of speed and direction. Instructions are written clearly on the telegraph, as it would be too loud to hear verbal directions over the roar of the engines below decks.

The pilots navigated by means of radar, echo sounder and chart work. Radio was the main form of communication but pilots could also send messages by signal flag, whistle, loudhailer or using an Aldis lamp, a visual signalling device used to send Morse code.

Other equipment on the bridge includes a clearview screen, Loudaphone system for internal communication, batteries and charger, the light switches for the deck and navigation lights and emergency equipment such as rockets, flares and sirens.

Above the bridge is the Monkey Island. This carries the radar mast, vhf radio aerial, wind vane and another compass used for taking bearings.

Equipment on the bridge: telegraph (top left), whistle control (bottom left) and helm and compass (right).