Naval History Homepage and Site Search




by Lt Cdr Geoffrey B Mason RN (Rtd) (c) 2006

HMS TROUNCER (D 85) - Ruler-class Escort Aircraft Carrier

HMS Puncher, sister-ship (Navy Photos/Alan for Mr S Vallely, click to enlarge) return to Contents List 

RULER-Class Escort Aircraft Carrier (Also designated CVE by US Navy) and obtained under the UK/US Lease-Lend Agreement. The  ship was a C3 mercantile hull being built by the Seattle-Tacoma SB Corporation at Seattle for the US Navy as an  Escort  Aircraft Carrier.  She was laid down on 1st February 1943 and launched as USS PERDITO (CVE47) on 16th June 1943. Transferred to Commercial Iron Works at Portland to suit US Navy deployment work was completed on 28th January 1944. The ship was commissioned for Royal Navy service as HMS TROUNCER on 31st January 1944. This name not been previously borne by an RN warship. US Navy radar equipment was fitted during  build and she was intended for deployment as an Assault Carrier for the support amphibious landing operations, However she was initially used as a Ferry Carrier for transport of aircraft from US ports.


B a t t l e   H o n o u r s




H e r a l d i c   D a t a

On a Field barry wavy of ten White and Blue a cutlass

and an axe in saltire, Gold.



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


January                  Contractor’s trials.

                                (Note: Three US Navy radars were fitted during build, Type SK for aircraft detection,

                                Type SG for surface warning and a fire-control outfit for the control of Close Range

                                AA Armament.

                                The main armament comprised two 5in standard US Navy guns and over 50 smaller

                                calibre Close Range AA guns.

                28th        Build completion

                31st         Transferred to the Royal Navy and commissioned at Tacoma as HMS TROUNCER


February                Commenced sea trials and shakedown.

                29th        Passage to Esquimalt for modifications to suit RN service.


March                    Under modification by HM Canadian Dockyard, Esquimalt.

to                            (Note: Some sea trials may have been carried out.)



May                        Nominated for deployment by US Navy as a Ferry Carrier.

                15th        Took passage to Norfolk, Va to embark aircraft.

                                Transit of Panama canal.



                4th          Arrived at Norfolk Navy Yard.

                                Embarked US aircraft for transport to Casablanca.

                18th        Sailed from Norfolk

                                (Note: Passage as part of US military convoy to be confirmed.)



                10th        Disembarked aircraft at Casablanca.

                13th        Took return passage to Norfolk

                                (Note: Passage with US military convoy to be confirmed.)

                                Award of Battle Honour ATLANTIC 1944 may be related to

                                this deployment.)

                28th        Took passage from Norfolk for New York to embark aircraft for RN use.



                2nd         Embarked CORSAIR aircraft in New York for transport to UK.

                                Atlantic passage

                                (Note: Passage as part of routine convoy to be confirmed.)

                22nd       Arrived at Liverpool after disembarking aircraft.

                                (Note: Delivery to Belfast to be confirmed.)

                26th        Sailed from Clyde for return passage to Norfolk

                                (Note: No shipyard capacity was available for further modification of this ship.

                                It is assumed that this would include changes to petrol distribution system

                                following the loss of HMS DASHER after an explosion of petrol vapour.)

                                Ship continued service as a Ferry Carrier.)


September             Embarked US aircraft at Norfolk on arrival

                5th          Took passage from Norfolk with aircraft for delivery Gibraltar

                                Disembarked aircraft at Gibraltar

                                Deployed at Gibraltar

                                (Note: Delay in return to USA may have been due to availability of convoy.)



                2nd         Sailed from Gibraltar to Norfolk, Va

                22nd       Sailed from Norfolk to Clyde

                                Nominated for use as a Deck Landing Training Carrier



                2nd         Deployed in Clyde as deck landing training carried


December              Resumed ferry carrier deployment and embarked aircraft for return to USA

                8th          Passage to New York

                                On arrival disembarked aircraft and loaded further consignment for transport to UK


1 9 4 5


January                  Passage to Clyde and disembarked aircraft on arrival

                18th        Under repair in Clyde shipyard

                                Nominated for refit.


February                Taken in hand for refit in Belfast shipyard.




P o s t   W a r   N o t e s


HMS TROUNCER was selected for service in 21st Aircraft Carrier Squadron, East Indies Fleet and took passage to Colombo in September 1945 with 1702 Squadron FIREFLY aircraft and personnel embarked for passage to Malta. The ship sailed from Malta later that month and arrived in Colombo on 14th October. Her service in Ceylon was brief and she nominated for return to UK prior to handing back to US Navy. Return passage was arranged via Cape of Good Hope and the ship called at Durban before sailing from Cape Town to Clyde during November. After arrival in Clyde on 14th December she was de-stored and prepared for return to USA with a steaming crew. She sailed for Norfolk Va on 26th January and called at Trinidad. A later stop at Bermuda may have been to delivery cargo and she was formally returned to the US Navy on 3rd March 1946. This ship was placed on the Disposal List and sold in 1949 for mercantile use as ss GREYSTOKE CASTLE.  Resold in 1954 she continued use as ss GALLIC until 1959 when she was sold once more and renamed BENRINNES which is believed to have been part of the BEN Line based at Leith. She was sold for breaking up at Kaohsiung, Formosa in 1973 and arrived there in tow for demolition on 3rd November that year.  


back to Contents List
or Naval-History.Net

revised 18/10/10
further editing and formatting is required