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For those suffering from acute Autonostalgiphrenic Post-Loss Disorder B [APD b7], here is a picture of the most beautiful of marine machines ever created. I'm sure you will agree with me when I say I do get a shiver of slight sexual excitement at the sight of these majestic ships, now sadly lost to this harsh, cruel world.

Oh, woe and mental anguish to the British Rail executive who decided to decommission these fine, gorgeous beauties - may he/she forever be wracked with guilt and carry it around with them like a lead weight about the neck! Who can ever forget the sliding crockery on a rough day, as cups and saucers slid helplessly across tables, clattering to the floor, unaffected by the little aluminium wall around the edge of each table whose sole purpose was to prevent just such a calamity from happening? Who can forget the heavenly flavour of Tony's crisps, made locally in our very own Portsmouth [Am I going mad? Am I the only one who can remember this divine savoury snack? Answers on a postcard please ... about the crisps, I mean, and not about me going mad]? Who can forget the juddering of the whole ship when the engines went into reverse, as the ship approached the pier, causing the early onset of dementia in most of us, now aged 20 or above? Who can forget the ... um ... I can't remember anything else really.

By the way, this photo shows the one occasion when the ferry was caught on a rod and line. The young boys were clearly embarrassed by the whole affair and can be seen trying to look nonchalant, as the one on the left reels in a huge 900 ton monster of a catch. They both looked away intently at something at the foot of the pier in the hope that people would think that the dangerously veering, out-of-control ferry was nothing to do with them.

Later on, down the pub, with arms out-stretched, he would brag about this huge 900 ton 'fish' he had caught and was humoured by the locals, who named him "Barmy Larry", threw peanuts at him and then shunned him. He later got VD. And as for his tartan flares they ran away, too ashamed to be seen on him.

Welcome to the group for people who dare to share an interest in the passenger motor ships of the once famous Denny-shipbuilder-of-Dumbarton-built-for-British-Railways Portsmouth to Ryde Isle Of Wight Ferries. Hope you have more luck than I did with this group - I was banned from joining.