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SERVICE HISTORIES of ROYAL NAVY WARSHIPS in WORLD WAR 2

by Lt Cdr Geoffrey B Mason RN (Rtd) (c) 2001

HMS CAVALIER (R 73) -  Ca-class Destroyer
including Convoy Escort Movements

HMS Cavalier (Navy Photos/George Knight, click to enlarge) return to Contents List 
 

Ca-Class destroyer of the 11th Emergency Programme ordered from JS White at Cowes, IoW  during November 1942. This ship was originally ordered from John Brown, Clydebank and to be named HMS PIQUE but the order was cancelled later and transferred to JS White. The ship was laid down on 28th February 1943 but launching was delayed due to air raid damage in the shipyard and also to design changes made by the Admiralty. When launched on 7th April 1944 she was the 1st RN ship to bear this name. She replaced HM River Gunboat APHIS as the adopted ship for the civil community of Morpeth, Northumberland which had been sold.. Build was completed on 22nd November 1944 and commissioned for service in the 6th Destroyer Flotilla.

 

B a t t l e   H o n o u r s

 

ARCTIC 1945

 

H e r a l d i c   D a t a

 

Badge: On a Field Red, a lionís face Gold, langued Blue

ducally crowned Gold within a horseshoe reversed,

also Gold, winged paly bendy Gold and Blue.

 

 

D e t a i l s   o f   W a r   S e r v i c e

 

(for more ship information, go to Naval History Homepage and type name in Site Search)

 

 

1 9 4 4

 

November            Contractors trials and commissioning.

          22nd           Build completion and commenced acceptance trials.

 

December             Passage to Scapa Flow for work-up with ships of Home Fleet after

                             completion of storing and weapon calibration.

 

1 9 4 5

 

January                 Work-up based at Scapa Flow.

 

February               On completion of work-up Home Fleet at Scapa Flow.

            11th          Deployed with HM Destroyers CAVENDISH, SCOURGE and ZEBRA

                             as escort for HM Cruiser DEVONSHIRE, HM Escort Aircraft Carriers

                             PREMIUM and PUNCHER during minelay and shipping strikes off

                             Norway as Force 2 (Operation SELENIUM)

             13th         Return passage to Scapa Flow.

             22nd        Deployed with HM Destroyers MYNGS and SCORPION as escort for

                             HM Cruiser DIDO, HM Escort Aircraft Carriers PREMIER and

                             PUNCHER in Force 4 during air minelay in Karm Sund (Operation

                             SHRED)

                             (Note: Force 4 also covered mine clearance by 10th Minesweeping

                                         Flotilla to provide a shorter passage for future operations off

                                         Norway (Operation GROUNDSHEET)

                                         For details of minelaying off Norway see Naval Staff History

                                         (Mining).)

              23rd        Detached from Force 4 with HMS MYNGS and HMS SCORPION to

                             reinforce escort for return Convoy RA64 on passage from Kola Inlet.

                             (Note: This convoy had been subject to violent weather conditions

                                         causing damage to some escorts.)

              25th         Joined RA64.

              27th         Detached from RA64 and returned to Scapa Flow.

 

March                    Home Fleet deployment in continuation.

 

April                      Deployed with Home Fleet at Scapa Flow.

                              Nominated for foreign service.

 

May                       Passage to Clyde for escort of troopship in NW Approaches.

                5th         Deployed in NW Approaches for escort.

                6th         After release from escort took passage to Scapa Flow and carried out

                              search for German submarines which had been ordered to surrender.

 

               7th         Deployed at Scapa Flow for exercises with ships of Flotilla in preparation

                              for operational service in East Indies Fleet.

                              During torpedo firing exercises hit by torpedo fired by another destroyer

                              and sustained underwater damage to after structure.

                              Inspection revealed port propeller and ďAĒ Bracket unusable and starboard

                              propeller damaged.

                              Taken in tow for return to Scapa Flow.

                              Following further inspection repair arranged at Rosyth.

 

June                       Passage to Rosyth with tug in attendance.

                              Docked at Rosyth for repair.

 

July                       Under repair.

 

August                  Post repair trials, storing and preparation for foreign service.

              25th        Took passage from Rosyth for visit to South Shields.

                              (Note: This was to allow exchange of visits with civil community of

                                          Morpeth.)

              30th         Sailed from South Shields for Gibraltar on passage to Trincomalee

                              for service on East Indies Station.

 

P o s t   W a r   N o t e s

 

HMS CAVALIER was deployed for support of military operations in the Dutch East Indies including the landings at Sourabaya of the 5th Indian Division in October 1945. Later in February 1946 she went to Bombay with HM Destroyer PETARD after the mutiny of some Indian Navy personnel. The ship was transferred to Singapore in April that year for service with the British Pacific Fleet and embarked Chinese nationals for passage to Hong Kong. On her return passage to Singapore she carried sick allied personnel who were to return to UK by sea. During this period she was again deployed in the Dutch East Indies in support of allied troops and escorted US built minesweepers to Subic Bay in the Philippines for return to the US Navy.  On completion she called at Singapore before going to Trincomalee from whence she took passage to Pay-off on 11 May 1946.

 

Reduced to Reserve at Portsmouth this destroyer was laid up in the Reserve Fleet until selected for modernisation in 1951. On completion by Thornycroft at Woolston in 1957 she was recommissioned for service in the 8th Destroyer Flotilla and served in the Far East until 1963 when she again reduced to Reserve at Chatham. Whilst under tow to Gibraltar in 1964 she was damaged in a collision with the Liberian tanker BURGAN and had  to return to UK for repair at Portsmouth. The work to replace the bow structure was completed at Devonport. The ship then returned to Gibraltar on completion in January 1966 and was refitted before being brought forward for service the next year. Until 1972 she remained in commission and deployed initially in the Far East before return to UK to join the 4th Frigate Squadron in the Home Fleet.

 

Before being paid off at Chatham in 1972 she took part in a contest with another destroyer to determine which ship could steam the fastest, The ship was intended to be preserved and held in Reserve but instead was sold to the HMS CAVALIER TRUST for use as a Museum Ship. In 1977 she was towed to Southampton for display and later sold to South Tyneside Council for public display in dock at Hebburn. This project did not succeed and there was fear of damage due to vandalism.  Following negotiations with the National Lottery Fund, this destroyer was transferred to the custody of The Chatham Historic Dockyard who received  a Lottery Grant to enable her to be available for public display. This latest move has not received great acclaim and her state of preservation has been questioned. Maintenance work is being supported by local organisations and the ship is open as part of the Chatham Historic Dockyard.

 

see HMS CAVALIER ASSOCIATION for latest news

 


 

Addendum

 

CONVOY ESCORT MOVEMENTS of  HMS CAVALIER

by Don Kindell

 

These convoy lists have not been cross-checked with the text above

 

 

 

 

 

Date convoy sailed

Joined convoy as escort

Convoy No.

Left convoy

Date convoy arrived

 

 

 

 

 

17/02/45

25/02/45

RA 064

27/02/45

28/02/45

28/02/45

05/03/45

AT 193

06/03/45

06/03/45

08/03/45

08/03/45

TA 192

09/03/45

14/03/45

09/03/45

14/03/45

AT 196A

15/03/45

15/03/45

17/03/45

17/03/45

TA 195A

18/03/45

24/03/45

22/03/45

22/03/45

TA 197

23/03/45

28/03/45

25/03/45

30/03/45

AT 200

31/03/45

31/03/45

01/04/45

01/04/45

TA 199

02/04/45

08/04/45

07/04/45

07/04/45

TA 200

08/04/45

13/04/45

03/04/45

09/04/45

AT 201B

10/04/45

10/04/45

18/04/45

18/04/45

TA 202

19/04/45

26/04/45

14/04/45

20/04/45

AT 204

21/04/45

21/04/45

26/04/45

26/04/45

TA 204

27/04/45

04/05/45

26/04/45

03/05/45

AT 206

04/05/45

04/05/45

01/05/45

08/05/45

AT 207

09/05/45

09/05/45

14/05/45

14/05/45

TA 207

15/05/45

22/05/45

09/05/45

15/05/45

AT 208

16/05/45

16/05/45

21/05/45

21/05/45

TA 208

22/05/45

28/05/45

27/05/45

02/06/45

AT 211

03/06/45

03/06/45

 

 

 

 

 

(Note on Convoys)

 

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revised 12/8/11
further editing and formatting is required