Night Star ferry | Gwulo: Old Hong Kong

Night Star ferry

Night Star ferry

Why was the Night Star's name painted out and the number 555P added?  The other ferry in the background has been treated in the same way. (Andrew S)

Date picture taken (may be approximate): 
Tuesday, January 1, 1952


Hi Andrew.  In the old days, our car licence plates had numbers stamped and painted on quality metal plates, and we got a new plate every year.  Same idea for economy, I guess.  Regards,  Peter

Hello Peter.

Interesting, but I had never previously seen a photograph of any Star ferry boat with its name painted out. Regards, Andrew

Hi Andrew, if not for economy, I can only guess that management tried a different way of identifying their vessles, and it didn't last long.  It was like a insult to the ship, how little labour and paint (compared to the rest of the vessel) they would have incurred had they continued to make her name stand out.

It was back to white-on-green, or gold/yellow-on-green in my quick view of their other photos.   Regards,  Peter  

Thanks Peter.

 Strange decisions are sometimes made. Andrew

Man Choy.jpg

Man Choy.jpg, by degahkg

The number 555P refers to the number of passengers the ferry was permitted to carry. All HK ferries had the number of permitted passengers painted on the stern ( see picture of Man Choy above which carried 625 passengers). Regarding the painting of the hull I wonder if this was an experiment to paint the ferries in the same dark brunswick green colour scheme of HK Tramways as both companies were part of HK & Kowloon Wharf & Godown Co. 


Thank you degahkg for explaining the purpose of the number.  Regards,  Peter

Thank you for your comment.  I should have realised that the ‘P’ was there for a purpose! I didn’t know that the Star Ferries and the trams were owned by the same company. You could well be right but, if it was an experiment in creating corporate identity, I suspect that it didn’t last.  Regards, Andrew

Only too pleased to contribute to the topic and have an excuse to delve into my slides of HK shipping.

Regards  degahk

Shortly, I'll be uploading a few more with ships on them - rather at a distance - except for several of an aircraft carrier passing through the Lyemun entrance to the harbour. I think it was British or Australian but am not sure.  Andrew