Royal Mail Steam Packet (RMSP) Company

Steam-driven packet boats were originally used in 1821 from Holyhead port. The ships were called Meteor and Lighting and marked a new era in the postal service.

18 years later Scottish geographer, James MacQueen, started the Royal Mail Steam Packet Company (RMSP) - a British shipping company. The organisation operated 14 specially built steam vessels designed to carry Queen Victoria’s mail to Barbados in the West Indies from Southampton and Falmouth. The ships set sail twice a month.

Facing competition from the new luxury Blue Star Line, RMSP introduced 22,200 gross register tonnage (GRT) liners - the largest motor ships in the world. After running into financial difficulty, RMSP was formally taken over by the newly formed Royal Mail Lines Ltd (RML) in 1932. In 1965, RML was bought by British transport company, Furness, Withy & Co.

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