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News > Announcements > Obituaries > In Memoriam: WIlfred Burrell Thomson (49-52)

In Memoriam: WIlfred Burrell Thomson (49-52)

You are warmly welcomed to leave a message below, share your memories and celebrate the life of Wilfred Thomson (49 -52) who we sadly lost in 2018.
30 Mar 2023
Written by Robin Knight
Obituaries
Wilfred Thomson
Wilfred Thomson

W.B. THOMSON

Wilfred Burrell Thomson (49-52) died of cancer in Melbourne, Australia on 10th June 2018
aged 82 as we were informed in 2023 by his brother Nick. He left a wife Marie, two sons and
a daughter.


Known as Bill, Thomson was born in England at Oakham in Rutland and entered the Nautical
College in January 1949. At the NCP he was in Macquarie Division and Form Upper Vd (a
precursor to the MN Form) as well as belonging to the Natural History Society and being
awarded a Royal Life Saving Society Bronze Cross.


Always destined since his early days in Cornwall and Devon for a career at sea, Bill joined
P&O as an apprentice in August 1952 aged just 17. He remained with P&O until 1965 by
which time he had gained both a Master’s and Extra Master’s Certificate and sailed in a
variety of well-known cargo vessels of the era such as Aden and Ballarat.


Marrying in Cornwall in 1962, Bill decided to come ashore three years later aged 30 and
emigrate to Australia, living initially in Fremantle, Western Australia and training to become
a marine surveyor. Once qualified he moved to Brisbane, Queensland and later to Darwin in
the Northern Territory.  By 1973 a Principal Surveyor (Marine), he settled in Melbourne, Victoria for five years
before returning to Fremantle in 1978 to work first for the Australian Maritime Authority and
latterly for the Maritime Safety Authority (MSA).


In 1995, aged 60, Bill retired from the MSA and moved to Kuratau, near Turangi on the
North Island of New Zealand. He remained there for the next 16 years. His cancer was first
diagnosed in 2011 in New Zealand. Eventually, he moved to a Blue Cross retirement home in
Melbourne where he died in 2018.

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