Fleet Destroyer ordered from Swan Hunter at
Newcastle on 27th April 1942 with
ships of the 1st and 2nd Flotillas on 27th
April 1942. The ship was laid down
on 28th October 1942 and launched on 1st
November 1942. She was the 4th RN ship
to carry this name which commemorates the
victory off Cape Barfleur
over the French Fleet by a combined British
and Dutch Squadron and was first
used in 1697 for a 2nd Rate. It had last been
borne by an 1892 battleship sold
in 1910. Build was completed on 14th September
1944 but the ship was accepted
without the new fire-control director (Mk VI).
of this item had already delayed hand-over
from the shipbuilder planned to be
in March 1944 and it was decided to commission
the snip and carry out as many
First of Class trials as possible without this
fitted. The ship then returned to the
builders’ yard to await installation of
this fundamental item of equipment that also
carried the radar aerials for the
main armament fire-control system. This
destroyer was the only one of her Class
to take a part in war operations in the
Pacific and was designated as belonging
to Group 1 TRAFALGAR Type of the 1942
B a t t
l e H o n o u r s
1702 - VELEZ MALAGA 1704 - CAPE PASSARO 1718
- TOULON 17440 - AIX 1757 - CHESAPEAKE
1731 - ST
KITTS 1782 - THE
SAINTES 1782 - GLORIOUS FIRST OF JUNE
GROIX 1795 - ST
VINCENT 1797 - CALDER'S ACTION 1805 - CHINA
H e r a
l d i
c D a t
Badge: On a
Field Blue’ a Goat statant
white within a ohaplet
u m m a r
y of S
e r v i c e
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1 9 4 4
completion date delayed due to lack of
availability of Gunnery
Ship deployment with
British Pacific Fleet delayed.
Fitting out in continuation.
Decision made to commission
on 4th September.
Accepted Into service for First of
Retained at builder's yard to await
delivery of director.
November Mk 6
Director and Type 275 radar installation.
Commenced trials of main fire-control system.
details of radar fit and use of radar in Fleet
after 1943 see RADAR AT SEA
1 9 4 5
Radar trials including Target Indication and
Fire Control system in
completion of First of Class trials.
Although fire control radar for tarns
intended to be fitted, it had not
acceptance trials - See above reference )
for foreign service on completion of trials.
to Mediterranean and worked-up for operational
service in BPF.
to join British Pacific Fleet.
change of US Navy organisation in Pacific
service in Task Force 37
3rd US Fleet.
RN ships deployed with 5th US fleet as Task
Force 57 had been
also been transferred
to 3rd US
in Sydney after Task Force 37 had sailed to
join operations off
Deployed with HM Destroyers WAKEFUL
and WRANGLER to screen HM Aircraft Carrier
WRANGLER and WAKEFUL during passage to Join
Task Force 37-
at British Fleet base at Manus
Pennant Number D61 allocated for
Visual Signalling purposes D61 to conform with
requirements whilst serving
under overall US Navy
Arrived in Replenishment Area with HMS
INDEFATIGABLE and Joined Task Force.
Sailed as part of screen for Task
Force ships to carry out flying operations off
Returned with screen to Replenishment
For details of operations off Japan see THE
FORGOTTEN FLEET by
57 by P Smith, OPERATION PACIFIC by E. Gray
Resumed screening duties during
flying operations against subsidiary targets.
Due to US Navy internal directives Britain
ships did not take
part in the flying
primary targets such as naval installations.
See above references.)
Returned with screen for
replenishment after further
air operations against
air fields in SW
and shipping at Maizuru
and Nagoya Bay.
screening duties in continuation with Task
Force 37 ships.
First Atomic bomb dropped on
Second Atomic bomb dropped on
of screen for BPF units during Joint RN/USN
attacks on airfields
and ships in Nort
Transferred to Task Force 38 when
ships of BPF had to return to Manus
because of lack
British Fleet Train
tankers. See above
This ship was the only BATTLE Class destroyer
to see operational
service in WW2).
Task Group 38.5 with HM
Destroyers NAPIER (RAN), NIZAM (RAN), TEAZER
and WRANGLER for
screening of HM
KING GEORGE V, HM Aircraft Carrier
1NDEFATIGABLE, HM Cruisers
and GAMBIA (RNZN).
KING GEORGE V was on passage from Guam and did
not Join TG38.5 until
Deployed with screen for TG38.5
during air strikes on Onagawa
and under attack by
25 of which were shot down by Ships of the
Returned to Replenishment area
with TG38.5 to refuel from US tankers.
Deployed with screen during what
proved to be final air strikes made on Japan.
attacks on airfields at Hisaruki
and Nobara were
made all strike operations were cancelled
ships came under attack by an aircraft which
dropped two bombs near
HMS KING GEORGE V Joined TG38.5 in
position south east of Tokyo.
Replenished with ships of TG38.5.
Arrived in Sagami Wan with TG38.5.
P o s
t W a r
S e r v i c e
Present in Tokyo Bay for formal
with ships of BPF under RN control to assist
in repatriation of
PoW and allied
December Transferred to
19th Destroyer Flotilla.
Pennant Number for visual signalling purposes
changed to D80 after
reverting to RN control.
1 9 4 6
Pacific Fleet deployment with Flotilla in
Ships in the 19th Destroyer Flotilla were all
Destroyers ARMADA, CAMPERDOWN, HOGUE, LAGOS
BPF after VJ Day as they became available for
HMS SOLEBAY and HMS FINISTERRE were retained
in tans waters.)
After requirements in
Japan were terminated based at Hong Kong for
Fleet duties including
protection of British
flagged shipping off coasts of China and Indo
1 9 4 7
Flotilla recalled to UK.
Passage to UK with
Paid off and reduced to Reserve
Joined Reserve Fleet after reduction to
1 9 4
8 t o 1952
deployment in continuation.
changes were made::
4.5in mountings fitted.
single Mk7 Bofors
Twin Bofor STAAG
Radar controlled mounting fitted.
SQUID A/S Mortar fitted with Type 144Q and 147
Definition Warning Surface Radar Type 974
torpedo tubes were retained.
for service in 3rd Destroyer Flotilla,
in place of HMS
HMS VIGO and
Other ships is Flotilla were SAINTES (Leader)
in Mediterranean and took part in Fleet
exercise and visits
programmes with ships
HMS VIGO was replaced by HMS ST KITTS).
1 9 5 4
to UK in
December and recommissioned
for General Service
1 9 5 5
Flotilla in Home Fleet until October.
Mediterranean for Fleet duties with Flotilla.
1 9 5 6
Flotilla in Mediterranean.
part in Suez operations in October and
Returned to UK in
December 1956 for service with Home Fleet.
(Note: HMS ARMADA
replaced HMS SAINTES as Leader).
1 9 5 7 /
1 95 8
Served with 3rd Destroyer Squadron.
Spent 1957 in the Med Fleet, with two anti-gun
running patrols off Cyprus.
In January 1958, took part in Home
Fleet Spring excursion to the West Indies,
then various exercises around UK.
Homing torpedo trials in Loch Long June/July
and back to Plymouth for Navy Days.
Paid off and reduced to Reserve in September
a l P h a s e
HMS BARFLEUR remained in Reserve until 1966 and was placed
on the Disposal List. The ship was sold to
Young for breaking-up at Dalmuir
where she arrived in June that year.