The History of Leith

August 22, 2004

Leith Built ships from the Second World War

In the war of 1914-1918 only two small ships were built at Leith for the Royal Navy. During the intervening years the shipbuilding facilities of the port were consolidated into one efficient unit ready to take its share of the National defence.


A Royal Visit by George VI to Henry Robb’s 29th July 1943


The Late Queen Mother 1943


The Board of Directors of Henry Robb’s


An Artists reconstruction from records of the rescue of the crew of a Liberator in the North Atlantic by HMS Pink


HMS Padstow Bay


HMS Cardigan Bay


HMS Staffa


Countess Jellicoe and Mr W.Jordan High Commissioner for New Zealand with the Officers and Crew of HMNZS Moa


A drawing showing HMS Petunia picking up hundreds of survivors from a sunken liner


German Prisnors of War on board HMS Dianthus after the ?Coevette had sunk their UBoat during the Battle of the Atlantic

During the second World War the Victoria Shipyards (Henry Robb’s) built forty two vessels for the Royal Navy, fourteen merchant ships and refitted and repaired nearly 3000 ships of the Royal Navy and Merchant Navy. This means that one new ship was launched on an average every six weeks and a ship repaired every day.

This didn’t include the design and pioneer work particularly in connection with big rescue tugs and the preparation of patterns for prefabrication, So that the work could be spread amongst engineering firms and output increased.

However this wasn’t to be Leith doesn’t ships now and what was “Henry Robb’s” is now a memory and the site is now occupied by the “Ocean Terminal”. However please find some photographs below of the shipyards and ships of Leith that fought to defend this country

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