OBITUARY : Captain Sir George Barnard

George Barnard was for 11 years, from 1961 to 1972, Deputy Master of the Corporation of Trinity House, the body responsible for the coastal waters of England and Wales.

He was born in Finchley, north London, in 1907. By the age of 15 he was apprenticed to Messrs Watts, Watts & Co, and went to sea in their ship SS Hounslow. When he first qualified as a navigating officer he transferred to the employ of the Bank Line and spent some years trading in the West Indies and Venezuela.

In 1935 Barnard gained his Master's certificate and joined Blue Star Line, in which he served through all the ranks. It was when he was Chief Officer of Andalucia Star in October 1942 that she was torpedoed and sank 190 miles off Freetown, Sierra Leone. Although the ship sank in 35 minutes all but one of the 160 passengers were saved, and only three crew members perished. Barnard was picked up from his lifeboat by the corvette Petunia and landed in Freetown from where he was repatriated with 1,500 other survivors of sinkings, and achieved his first command with the Blue Star Line in 1945.

Barnard was elected a Younger Brother of Trinity House in 1949 and an active Elder Brother in 1958, which meant an end of his active seagoing career; in 1961 he was elected Deputy Master (Chairman). Trinity House was first granted a Royal Charter in 1514 by Henry VIII and is the general lighthouse authority for England, Wales, the Channel Islands and Gibraltar, providing such aids to general navigation as lighthouses, light vessels, buoys and beacons. It is also a charitable organisation for the relief of mariners and their dependants who are in financial distress. Until recently it was also the principal pilotage authority but this responsibility has been devolved to the ports, and Trinity House now issues licences only for deep-sea pilots.

Barnard led Trinity House through an era of change in the field of aids to navigation and pilotage; the automation of lighthouses; formulation of an international buoyage system; and the use of fast launches in pilotage were all initiated in his time.

In retirement Barnard was a keen gardener and croquet player.

Malcolm Edge

Few people have had such a profound influence on maritime affairs as George Barnard, writes C. J. Parker. By undertaking to become chairman of the trustees and, later, elected as the first President of the Nautical Institute, he introduced a new concept of professionalism into the Merchant Navy and built a permanent bridge between all sea users in a way which had never before been possible.

As founder President it was not easy to introduce a new outlook in such a conservative profession, particularly as there were well-established relationships between unions, owners and government whose leaders saw no need for change.

Barnard had the foresight to see the limitations and insularity of the shipping industry and against considerable opposition led the profession forward. The Nautical Institute is now one of the world's premier maritime professional organisations with over 6,000 members in 70 countries. All its members mourn the death of "Captain Sir George".

George Edward Barnard, mariner: born London 11 August 1907; Elder Brother of Trinity House 1958-95, Deputy Master 1961-72; Treasurer, International Association of Lighthouse Authorities 1961-72; Honorary Secretary, King George's Fund for Sailors 1967-75; Kt 1968; Chairman, Nautical Institute 1972-73, President 1973-75, Fellow 1975-95; married 1940 Barbara Hughes (died 1976; one son); died Watford, Hertfordshire 14 April 1995.

ebooksAn unforgettable anthology of contemporary reportage
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs People

COO / Chief Operating Officer

£80 - 100k + Bonus: Guru Careers: A COO / Chief Operating Officer is needed to...

HR Manager - Kent - £45,000

£40000 - £45000 per annum: Ashdown Group: HR Manager / Training Manager (L&D /...

HR Manager - Edgware, London - £45,000

£40000 - £45000 per annum + Benefits: Ashdown Group: HR Manager - Edgware, Lon...

HR Manager - London - £40,000 + bonus

£32000 - £40000 per annum + bonus: Ashdown Group: HR Manager (Generalist) -Old...

Day In a Page

A roller-coaster tale from the 'voice of a generation'

Not That Kind of Girl:

A roller-coaster tale from 'voice of a generation' Lena Dunham
London is not bedlam or a cradle of vice. In fact it, as much as anywhere, deserves independence

London is not bedlam or a cradle of vice

In fact it, as much as anywhere, deserves independence
Vivienne Westwood 'didn’t want' relationship with Malcolm McLaren

Vivienne Westwood 'didn’t want' relationship with McLaren

Designer 'felt pressured' into going out with Sex Pistols manager
Jourdan Dunn: Model mother

Model mother

Jordan Dunn became one of the best-paid models in the world
Apple still coolest brand – despite U2 PR disaster

Apple still the coolest brand

Despite PR disaster of free U2 album
Scottish referendum: The Yes vote was the love that dared speak its name, but it was not to be

Despite the result, this is the end of the status quo

Boyd Tonkin on the fall-out from the Scottish referendum
Manolo Blahnik: The high priest of heels talks flats, Englishness, and why he loves Mary Beard

Manolo Blahnik: Flats, Englishness, and Mary Beard

The shoe designer who has been dubbed 'the patron saint of the stiletto'
The Beatles biographer reveals exclusive original manuscripts of some of the best pop songs ever written

Scrambled eggs and LSD

Behind The Beatles' lyrics - thanks to Hunter Davis's original manuscript copies
'Normcore' fashion: Blending in is the new standing out in latest catwalk non-trend

'Normcore': Blending in is the new standing out

Just when fashion was in grave danger of running out of trends, it only went and invented the non-trend. Rebecca Gonsalves investigates
Dance’s new leading ladies fight back: How female vocalists are now writing their own hits

New leading ladies of dance fight back

How female vocalists are now writing their own hits
Mystery of the Ground Zero wedding photo

A shot in the dark

Mystery of the wedding photo from Ground Zero
His life, the universe and everything

His life, the universe and everything

New biography sheds light on comic genius of Douglas Adams
Save us from small screen superheroes

Save us from small screen superheroes

Shows like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D are little more than marketing tools
Reach for the skies

Reach for the skies

From pools to football pitches, rooftop living is looking up
These are the 12 best hotel spas in the UK

12 best hotel spas in the UK

Some hotels go all out on facilities; others stand out for the sheer quality of treatments