25th County of London Cyclist Battalion
The London Regiment


H.M.T. Ekma

The Ekma was used in the transportation of 1/25th London troops back from Mesopotamia, departing Basra on the 14th Apr 1919 and arriving in Karachi on the 18th. 
These troops had been seconded to the 1/9th Middlesex Regt in Mesopotamia in October 1917.

A ship of the British India Steam Navigation Company.

Built in 1911. Scrapped at Bombay in 1948. 5,107 tons.


H.M. Transports Ekma & Elepanta at Suez.
[from 'The Naval Front' by Gordon S. Maxwell. pub.1920 A&C Black Ltd.]


P&O fact sheet
* indicates entries changed during P&O group service
Type  Passenger/cargo liner 
P&O Group service  1914-1948 
P&O Group status  Owned by subsidiary company 
Registered owners British India Steam Navigation Company Ltd 
Builders  Workman Clark & Co Ltd 
Yard  Belfast 
Country UK 
Yard number 308
Official number  132999
Signal letters  HVSB 
Classification society  Lloyd's Register 
Gross tonnage  5,108 grt 
Net tonnage  2,356 nrt 
Deadweight  4,286 tons 
Length  124.92m (410.0ft) 
Breadth  15.93m (52.3ft) 
Depth  8.32m (27.3ft) 
Draught 7.100m (23.3ft) 
Engines  2 triple expansion steam engines 
Engine builders  Workman Clark & Co Ltd 
Works  Belfast 
Power  7,000 ihp 
Propulsion  Twin screw 
Speed  16.5 knots 
Passenger capacity*  51 first class, 39 second class, 2,257 deck passengers 
Cargo capacity 5,356 cubic metres (189,174 cubic feet) 
Employment*  Calcutta/Rangoon/Straits service 
21.10.1911  Launched. 
14.12.1911  Ran trials and delivered as Ekma for British India Steam Navigation Company at a cost of 100,900. She was the last ship of the E-class to be delivered with the other ships named Ellenga, Edavana, Elephanta, Egra, Ellora and Erinpura. 
24.06.1914  Takeover of British India Steam Navigation Company by the 
Peninsular and Oriental Steam Navigation Company agreed. 
14.08.1914  Taken up as an Indian Expeditionary Force transport. 
9.1914 Served as a member of the convoy from Karachi. 
16.01.1915  Damaged in a collision in Bombay. 
12.1919 Released from Government service. 
22.01.1920  Grounded at Nurpur Flat whilst sailing from Rangoon to Calcutta. 
06.06.1921  Involved in a collision with British India Steam Navigation Company's Angora, escaping with little damage. 
10.1926 Mooring cable parted whilst in Rangoon Harbour sending her out into the river with no steam for her engines, steering gear nor whistle. She hit the wharf just enough to change her course and avoid collision with her sister Ellenga and send her out into the river again, where her last anchor brought her to a stop despite the rapid current. 
3.194 Requisitioned for the Liner Division service. 
7.1942 Returned troops to Australia. 
1943 Allotted to the second Malayan Campaign. 
12.1946 Returned to commercial service. 
01.05.1948  Sold for Rs 240,000 to Hassanally Shipbreakers of Bombay. 
1948 Broken up at Bombay by Esmailji Abdulhussein & Co. 

 Courtesy of P&O Heritage

The ship was also used as a troop transport in WW2. One soldier described her thus :- "a dirty little tub which seemed more like a cattle boat."
[By John Myers - http://www.bbc.co.uk/ww2peopleswar/stories/26/a8736726.shtml]


Copyright Simon Parker-Galbreath - Please acknowledge these web pages, and/or the original source.