Salisbury (Sarum) Probus Club

Sarum Probus Club is an organisation for retired men living in the Salisbury Area.


  • On 8th July The talk was given by Mr Steve Herra, formerly a ships Purser, on the Subject of “Cunard 1840-2022.”In 1838 The Company was formed by Canadian born Samuel Cunard who with the aid of two financial backers secured a Government contract to carry mail to Boston USA. Prior to this the journey took 6 weeks to cross the Atlantic and shipping losses were one in six ships.

    The first of his four ships was named Britannia and made the crossing in 13 days carrying as well as passengers a cow and chickens. Charles Dickens one of the earlier famous passengers was sick all the way sleeping on a very hard mattress in the top bunk.

    In 1870 The SS Parthia was built s smaller ship but with two bathtubs

    In 1880 all lighting was electric

    In 1907 The first of the 4 funnel ships named SS Mauritania was put into service having turbine engines thus giving more space for leisure activities including elevators. SS Carpathia was awarded the BOSTON Trophy for rescuing 705 survivors from the Titanic. This Trophy is always on display in the flag ship of the fleet

    Aquitania was the last of the 4 funnel ships and was fitted out as a luxury mansion and carried nearly all famous movie stars at one time or another.

    This was mainly because the main USA port became New York as Boston iced up in the winter, at the same time Cunard established their Head Office in Liverpool, subsequently moving to Southampton.

    In 1930 over 3,000 shipbuilders were employed building the joint venture ship of the Cunard-White Star line named Queen Mary a real luxury liner with shops and Ballroom at which Henry Hall was the dance band leader launched on 27th May 1936.

    It carried 16,000 troops on one trip in WW2

    Queen Mary became a hotel in USA and the Queen Elizabeth sank after catching fire in Hong Kong Harbour, while being converted to a university.

    QE2 is a hotel in Dubai.

    In 1980 Cunard became part of the American Carnival Group

  • On 22nd July Mr Kevin Patience gave a talk on  Aviation in Poole Harbour.

    The talk was based on the part played by Pool Harbour in the development of aviation in the period 1939—1947.

    Such was the quality and breadth of the talk; the following resume gives but the briefest of summaries.

    Starting of course with the first aviator Sam Cody and his local connections up until his fatal air crash in local woodlands.

    Mr Rolls of Rolls Royce fame who was born in Southbourne saw the future development of flying but unfortunately, he was also killed in a plane crash. His ideals were never the less carried on by Mr Royce

    Poole quickly became the main hub for the vast array of Flying Boats developed by Shorts in Havant particularly in carrying mail and passengers around the world. Such was the speed of development that both the Navy and Air Force established bases around Poole.

    Kevin’s numerous pictures of the vast array of Flying Boats and Seaplanes served to amplify his in-depth knowledge of the true role played by Aviation in Poole Harbour and its surrounding environs. It’s role in the second world war was brought to bear because of its closeness to Portland as the Gateway to England by German Bombers.

    The end of an era came when the last flying boat departed in 1947.

    The comments and questions that followed served to show what an interesting and captivating morning it had been.


  • Here araere are details of some earlier talks given to the Club.
  • If talks or trips out like this interest you, why not join us. Contact the secretary (01722 340508, 07553787345) or email