Liverpool shipping and the end of empire
The Ocean group in East and Southeast Asia, c. 1945–73
in The empire in one city?
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Liverpool's overseas trade remained skewed towards the developing world in the postwar, decolonisation era. To facilitate deeper investigation into the impact of decolonisation on Merseyside, this chapter focuses on one leading shipping interest, the Ocean (or Blue Funnel or Alfred Holt) group of companies. The Ocean Steam Ship Company (OSSCo.), which ran the Blue Funnel Line, was established in Liverpool during 1865 by Alfred and Philip Holt. After 1945, problems of reconstruction from war damage were swiftly superseded, as far as Ocean executives were concerned, by political unrest and economic indigenisation throughout East and Southeast Asia. Despite political upheaval and economic indigenisation throughout the developing world, Liverpool's trading patterns remained orientated towards non-European markets into the 1970s. Moreover, Ocean remained a formidable force in post-Second World War shipping in Pacific Asia.

The empire in one city?

Liverpool’s inconvenient imperial past

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