In 1965 when I was nine, my father got a one-year job exchange under a Commonwealth Teachers exchange programme. He was to lecture at Wagga Wagga Teacher Training College in New South Wales, Australia whilst his counterpart filled his job at the CF Mott Teacher Training College, Prescot UK.
We sailed to Australia on the P & O – Orient Lines’ SS Orsova, via the Suez Canal. This mode of travel was not unusual at the time, and our fellow passengers included many families emigrating with all their worldly goods on board under the Australian government £10 “Assisted Passage” scheme.
A year later, we returned to the UK on the Shaw Savill Lines’ SS Northern Star, via the Panama Canal. Some of the passengers on this voyage were those who had failed to adjust to a permanent new life ‘down under’.
I went to school, made friends, owned a pony and travelled during my stay, but unfortunately I did not keep a diary. However, I did keep diaries during both the month-long sailings to Australia and from Australia.
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