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SERVICE HISTORIES of ROYAL NAVY WARSHIPS in WORLD WAR 2
by Lt Cdr Geoffrey B Mason RN (Rtd) (c) 2005

HMS, later HMCS RICHMOND (G 88), also Russian ZHIVUCHI - ex-US Destroyer including Convoy Escort Movements

HMS Clare, Type A close sister-ship, in 1942 (Navy {Photos, click to enlarge)

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Ex USS FAIRFAX (Type B - CALDWELL Class) built by Mare Island Navy Yard. The ship was launched en 15th December 1917. Build was completed on 6th April 1918 and the ship was held in Reserve in 1939. Transferred under the UK/US Lend Lease Agreement on 26th November 1940. and the ship commissioned into RN service as HMS RICHMOND on 5th December 1940. This name is common to one town in Indiana USA and two in UK. This name was introduced in 1660 for a 5th Rate formerly named WAKEFIELD and had last been used by a trawler requisition during WW1. Following a successful WARSHIP WEEK National Savings campaign in February 1942 she was appropriately adopted by the civil community of Richmond in Surrey.

 

B a t t l e   H o n o u r s

 

QUEBEC 1759 - HAVANA 1762 - CHESAPEAKE 1781 - ATLANTIC 1941-43 - ARCTIC  1942

 

H e r a l d i c   D a t a

Badge: On a Field Blue,  a Portcullis winged Gold charged

with a hurt thereon a mullet white.

 

 

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 0

 

November

 

Prepared for transfer and took passage to Halifax.

 

26th - Taken in custody by Royal Canadian Navy pending arrival of Royal Navy personnel.

 

December

 

5th - Commissioned as HMS RICHMOND at Halifax.

 

Took passage for Devonport via Newfoundland. Under repair at St Johns, Newfoundland.

 

 

1 9 4 1

 

January

 

Under repair

 

25th - On passage to Devonport

 

February

 

1st - Taken in hand for refit by HM Dockyard Devonport after arrival. (Note: Work done included modifications to suit RN use as convoy escort.)

 

March

 

Under refit.

 

16th - On completion worked up for operational deployment in SW Approaches.

 

Grounded at Holyhead during passage to Liverpool for escort duty. Repair arranged in Commercial shipyard at Southampton. Passage to Southampton for repair.

 

April to May

 

Under repair.

 

Allocated for duty with 17th Escort Group based in Newfoundland. Took passage to Clyde to join military convoy

 

June

 

3rd - Deployed with HM Cruiser CAIRO, HM Destroyers COSSACK, MAORI, OTTAWA (RCN), RAMSEY, RESTIGOUCHE (RCN), SIKH, VANQUISHER, WINCHELSEA and ZULU as Local Escort for Convoy WS9A during passage in Western Approaches.

 

7th - Detached from WS9A and took independent passage to Group at St Johns.

 

July to September

 

Deployed with Group for convoy escort between eastern American coast and the Mid Atlantic Meeting Point.

 

Allocated for refit in UK

 

October

 

Passage to UK for refit

 

29th - Taken in for refit in commercial shipyard at Cardiff. (Note: This included further modifications to suit deployment as convoy escort.)

 

November to December

 

Under refit.

 

 

1 9 4 2

 

January to February

 

Under refit.

 

Allocated for duty with 27th Escort Group based at Greenock.

 

March

 

On completion worked-up for operational service at Tobermory and joined Group.

 

26th - Joined HM Destroyers AMBUSCADE, BULLDOG, Polish ORP BLYSKAWICA and HM Trawler TANGO at Oban for escort for Russian Convoy at during passage to Iceland. (For details of all Russian Convoy operations see CONVOYS TO RUSSIA by RA Ruegg, ARCTIC CONVOYS by R Woodman, THE RUSSIAN CONVOYS by B Schoefield and CONVOY ! by P Kemp).

 

April

 

In collision with US mercantile FRANCIS SCOTT KEY and sustained major damage. Towed to Iceland for temporary repair.

 

May

 

Taken in tow for passage to Liverpool on completion.

 

June to July

 

Under permanent repair.

 

Allocated for duty with Western Atlantic Escort Force based at Halifax.

 

August

 

On completion of post repair trials carried out work-up at Tobermory.

 

Passage to Halifax to resume service in western Atlantic.

 

September

 

1st - Joined Escort Force at Halifax for convoy defence

 

October to December

 

Deployment based at Halifax in continuation.

 

 

1 9 4 3

 

January

 

Halifax deployment in continuation.

 

February

 

Involved in collision with mercantile ss REINHOLT. Passage to UK for repair.

 

March

 

18th - Taken in hand for repair in commercial shipyard at Liverpool.

 

April

 

Under repair.

 

May

 

31st - On completion of post refit trials prepared for service at Halifax.

 

June

 

Passage to rejoin Escort Force at Halifax. Resumed convoy defence in western Atlantic.

 

 

B e l i e v e d   S t a r t   o f   S e r v i c e   a s   H M C S   R I C H M O N D

 

July to November

 

Convoy defence in Canadian waters based at Halifax in continuation.

 

Nominated for withdrawal from operational service. (Note: Increasing unreliability of machinery in this Class of warship and requirements for personnel to man new construction escort made this an acceptable option.)

 

December

 

Passage to UK via Azores.

 

27th - Paid off and de-stored.

 

 

R e v e r t e d   t o   R o y a l   N a v y   S e r v i c e

 

1 9 4 4

 

January to May

 

Laid up in Tyne.

 

Allocated for transfer to Russia in lieu of captured Italian warship tonnage.

 

June

 

Under refit at Palmer's Yard, Hebburn-on Tyne for service in Soviet Navy.

 

July

 

Russian personnel joined.

 

16th - Transferred to Russian Navy and renamed ZHIVUCHI.

 

 

T r a n s f e r   t o   R u s s i a n   N a v y

 

August

 

Passage to Scapa Flow to join Russian Squadron.

 

17th - Joined Russian Convoy JW59 for passage to Kola Inlet with Russian battleship ARCHANGELSK (Ex HMS ROYAL SOVEREIGN), seven other Ex US Navy sister destroyers and 12 Russian manned Ex US Navy PT boats being transferred for Soviet navy deployment.,

 

24th - Joined Russian Northern Fleet after detachment from JW59.

 

September to December

 

Service with Russian Northern Fleet as ZHIVUCHI.

 

 

1 9 4 5

 

January to August

 

Soviet naval service in continuation based in North Russia.

 

 

P o s t   W a r   N o t e s

 

ZHIVUCHI was returned to the RN at Rosyth on 24th September 1949 and resumed her former name. HMS RICHMOND. She was immediately placed on the Disposal List and sold to BISCO for demolition by G W Brunton and arrived in tow at the breakerís yard at Grangemouth on 29th July that year.

 


 

Addendum

 

CONVOY ESCORT MOVEMENTS of HMS RICHMOND

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

         

10/06/41

16/06/41

HX 132

23/06/41

28/06/41

10/06/41

16/06/41

SC 034

22/06/41

29/06/41

26/06/41

02/07/41

OB 339

09/07/41

12/07/41

12/07/41

15/07/41

SC 037

23/07/41

28/07/41

11/07/41

16/07/41

HX 138

23/07/41

27/07/41

26/07/41

31/07/41

ON 001

09/08/41

09/08/41

26/08/41

26/08/41

TC 012B

27/08/41

01/09/41

04/09/41

07/09/41

HX 148

11/09/41

17/09/41

17/09/41

21/09/41

ON 017

24/09/41

29/09/41

29/09/41

04/10/41

SC 047

12/10/41

20/10/41

05/10/41

16/10/41

SC 048

20/10/41

22/10/41

27/03/42

27/03/42

UR 017

31/03/42

31/03/42

       

 

 

 

 

 

and as HMCS RICHMOND

 

 

 

 

 

21/08/43

22/08/43

ON 198

29/08/43

04/09/43

20/08/43

29/08/43

ONS 016

01/09/43

01/09/43

02/09/43

04/09/43

HX 255

06/09/43

16/09/43

15/09/43

15/09/43

SC 142

19/09/43

29/09/43

12/09/43

25/09/43

ONS 018

29/09/43

29/09/43

29/09/43

29/09/43

XB 076

01/10/43

01/10/43

27/09/43

12/10/43

ON 204

15/10/43

15/10/43

18/10/43

18/10/43

HX 262

24/10/43

02/11/43

18/10/43

28/10/43

ON 207

31/10/43

04/11/43

 

 

 

 

 

(Note on Convoys)

 

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revised 5/7/11
further editing is required