Ship Number
Vessel Type
Passenger Ferry
North Yard
Slip Number
Launch Date
September 7, 1911
March 28, 1912
Belfast Steamship Co.
2254 grt
BP Length
325 feet
41-6 feet
No. of Screws
Speed (approx)
18 knots
Triple expansion
Official No.

[Harland and Wolff Collection]

Patriotic was an improved version of the 1906 sisters Heroic and Graphic. She was built for the Belfast Steamship Company. Whereas the earlier ships had quadruple expansion engines, Patriotic reverted to triple-expansion. Patriotic was only 235 feet long, and 2300 gross tons. She was requisitioned as a troop ship during the 1914-18 war, afterwards returning to the Liverpool-Belfast route.
She was withdrawn from Belfast SS service in 1930 on the delivery of the three new Belfast SS Motorships, Ulster Monarch, Ulster Queen and Ulster Prince. She was given an extensive overhaul, which included a rearward extension of the boat deck, and the provision of two shorter and more modern funnels (one of which was a dummy) to match those of the new motorships. She was renamed Lady Leinster and joined the British & Irish SP Co fleet between Liverpool and Dublin. The two earlier near-sisters were displaced by the new British & Irish SP Co motorships Munster and Leinster of 1938. However, Lady Leinster was retained as the third ship on the Liverpool-Dublin route, but was confusingly renamed Lady Connaught, the original Heroic having been the Lady Connaught from 1930-1939.
At the beginning of the 1939-45 war, Lady Connaught  returned to the Liverpool-Belfast route (to cover more modern ships requisitioned) and was mined near the Mersey lightship in late 1940. There was no loss of life. She was towed back to Liverpool, but had suffered extensive damage and was laid up until 1942. Her insurers has declared her a total constructive loss, but Coast Lines bought the remains for £8500 and had her rebuilt as a cattle carrier in Dublin, carrying cargo out of the cattle season. She served in this role between Belfast and Liverpool until January 1944, when she went to Barclay, Curle's yard in Glasgow for extensive reconstruction as a hospital ship, which included the loss of her dummy funnel. She attended the Normandy beaches after D-Day and would lie off the beaches taking on wounded. Once full, she would head to Southampton, unload within several hours, and then return to the beaches. Her medical and nursing staff were all American. She continued this work until June 1945, when she returned to Belfast to be laid up whilst her future was considered.
Despite a shortage of tonnage after the war, it was not deemed worthwhile to reactivate her since her modifications into a hospital ship had been extensive. She remained laid up in Belfast until 1948 when she rebuilt as the cruise ship Lady Killarney. She replaced the Killarney, which had served in this role from Liverpool to western Scotland before the war, replacing in turn the similar cruises offered by Coast Lines subsidiary Langlands. Lady Killarney entered service with a buff hull and funnel. The hull was repainted green after three seasons. During a refit in 1952, she received full Coast Lines colours with black hull and black funnel with white chevron. She was withdrawn in 1956 and broken up in Port Glasgow.