Mersea Island Museum - Blackwater Ships


Ship:      CONTENDER BEZANT
Arrived:17 Aug 1983
Departed:6 Jan 1984
Career:Originally launched in 1981 as the commercially owned and operated CONTENDER BEZANT, a combination freight, roll on and roll off ferry (RORO) and container ship. She was one of the ships taken up from trade by the MoD for use in the 1982 Falklands War.
1984-88 converted to aviation training ship.
Renamed ARGUS. Pennant No. A135
Tonnage:11,445 gross
Built:1981
Type:RoRo ship
Owner:Sea Containers
LR/IMO Number:7822550
ID7822550

CONTENDER BEZANT in the River Blackwater before sale to the Govenment for conversion to RFA ARGUS

Above:  CONTENDER BEZANT in the River Blackwater before sale to the Govenment for conversion to RFA ARGUS
Source: Mersea Museum / Ian Clarke Collection

CONTENDER BEZANT laid up in the River Blackwater. Photo by the late Tony Stacey of Mersea.

Originally launched in 1981 as the commercially owned and operated CONTENDER BEZANT, a combination freight, roll on and roll off ferry (RORO) and container ship. She was one of the ships taken up from trade by the MoD for use in the 1982 Falklands War. 
1984-88 converted to aviation training ship for the Royal Navy. 
Renamed ARGUS. Pennant No. A135 Date: c1984.

Above:  CONTENDER BEZANT laid up in the River Blackwater. Photo by the late Tony Stacey of Mersea. Originally launched in 1981 as the commercially owned and operated CONTENDER BEZANT, a combination freight, roll on and roll off ferry (RORO) and container ship. She was one of the ships taken up from trade by the MoD for use in the 1982 Falklands War. 1984-88 converted to aviation training ship for the Royal Navy. Renamed ARGUS. Pennant No. A135 Date: c1984.
Source: Mersea Museum / Tony Stacey Collection

West Mersea Lifeboat pictures - RAF Sea King helicopter and laid up ship CONTENDER BEZANT. Date: c1984.

Above:  West Mersea Lifeboat pictures - RAF Sea King helicopter and laid up ship CONTENDER BEZANT. Date: c1984.
Source: Mersea Museum / Terence Smith


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