International Call Sign: Oscar-Yankee-Alpha-Romeo
S/S Bjørn is a combined tugboat and icebreaker, which was built in 1908 and delivered to Randers harbor in 1909, where it served as a tugboat and icebreaker. It was in operation until 1981, when the "Association of Preserving Old Ships", and the "Danish Veteran Ship Club" took over S/S Bjørn for DKK 72, one crown for each active year of its life, provided that the ship was restored.
The association at the time had 2 ships, S/S Skelskør and S/S Bjørn. In 1998, Bjørn was declared a "Special Preservation Worthy Ship" by the "Ship Preservation Fund" and in 2001 the "Danish Veteran Ship Club" removed S/S Bjørn from the original association as an independent association with own finances.
The restoration, for bringing the former icebreaker and tugboat back to a original coal-fired steamship, has been carried out for almost three decades of the "Bjørnebanden", consisting of several generations of former shipyard workers and seamen, smiths, shipbuilders, riggers, ship engineers, engineers. The common denominator is an experience of shipping or ship production at some point in working life.
Restoring the ship's original equipment, rebuilding hull, engine, boiler and accommodations so close to the original has required craftsmanship that has not been around for a long time. Renovation of Bjørn has made such skills necessary again, so the people behind Bjørn have made the restoration a living industrial history.
S/S Bjørn sails today from Helsingør with passengers. The operation is continued on a voluntary basis and is carried out by the active part of the "Bjørnebanden", which has now chosen a crew who has the proper papers to sail the ship.