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fighting ships of the world

ROYAL NAVY - UNITED KINGDOM

CRUISERS

ABDIEL fast minelayers (1941 - 1944)

Abdiel 1941

Manxman 1941

Ariadne 1963

Name No Yard No Builder Laid down Launched Comp Fate
1st group
Abdiel M39 1881 White, Cowes 29/3/1939 23/4/1940 15/4/1941 sunk 10/9/1943
Latona M76 1198 Thornycroft, Woolston 4/4/1939 20/8/1940 4/5/1941 sunk 25/10/1941
Manxman M70 - N70 568 A. Stephens, Linthouse 24/3/1939 5/9/1940 20/6/1941 minesweeper depot ship 1962
Welshman M84 623 Hawthorn Leslie, Hebburn 8/6/1939 4/9/1940 25/8/1941 sunk 1/2/1943
2nd group
Apollo M01 - N01 654 Hawthorn Leslie, Hebburn 10/10/1941 5/4/1943 12/2/1944 stricken 4/1961
Ariadne M65 - N65 591 A. Stephens, Linthouse 15/11/1941 16/2/1943 9/10/1943 sold for BU 1963

 

Displacement standard, t

2650

Apollo, Ariadne: 2810

Displacement full, t

3415

Apollo, Ariadne: 4100

Length, m

122.1 pp 127.4 oa

Breadth, m

12.2

Draught, m

4.65 deep load

Apollo, Ariadne: 4.93 deep load

No of shafts

2

Machinery

Parsons geared steam turbines, 4 Admiralty 3-drum boilers

Power, h. p.

72000

Max speed, kn

39.75

Fuel, t

oil 690 - 750

Apollo, Ariadne: oil 825

Endurance, nm(kts) 1000(38)

Armament

3 x 2 - 102/45 QF Mk XVI, 1 x 4 - 40/39 2pdr QF Mk VIII, 2 x 4 - 12.7/62, 100 - 156 mines

Apollo, Ariadne: 2 x 2 - 102/45 QF Mk XVI, 2 x 2 - 40/56 Bofors Mk IV/VIII/IX, 6 x 2 - 20/70 Oerlikon Mk II/IV, 100 - 156 mines

Sensors

type 285, 286 radars

Apollo: type 272, 282, 285, 291 radars

Ariadne: type 276, 282, 285, 291 radars

Complement

242 - 246

Apollo, Ariadne: 257

Ship project history: Very successful ships which have become by fastest in Royal Navy in the Second World War (their speed at standard load exceeded 41kts). They were intended for offensive minelaying, therefore on them, as well as in a case with "" type cruisers, all has been sacrificed to speed a case, in general, not typical for Royal Navy.

On early design stages it was supposed to arm ships by 120mm single-purpose guns, but subsequently considered, that record velocity will serve them as the best protection against the surface opponent. Instead of 120mm guns there were more light 102mm mounts that has allowed to moderate the upper weight some. Mine stowage of Abdiel class has appeared insufficient for its displacement, but it was the payment for high speed. First three ships were built under 1938 program, Welshman under 1939 program, two more (2nd groups), with a little changed armament structure and the increased fuel stowage under 1941 program.

Modernizations: 1941, Abdiel, Latona, Manxman, Welshman: + 4 x 1 - 20/70 Oerlikon Mk II/IV

late 1941, Latona: + 2 x 1 - 40/39 2pdr QF Mk VIII

1942, Abdiel, Manxman, Welshman: - 2 x 4 - 12.7/62; + (2 - 3) x 1 - 20/70 Oerlikon Mk II/IV, type 282 radar

1943, Abdiel, Manxman, Welshman: - type 286 radar; + type 276, 291 radars

1944, Ariadne: + 1 x 2 - 40/56 Bofors Mk IV/VIII/IX

early 1945, Apollo: + 1 x 2 - 20/70 Oerlikon Mk II/IV

1945, Manxman: - 2 x 1 - 20/70; + 4 x 2 - 20/70 Oerlikon Mk II/IV (4 twin and 4 single at all)

7/1945, Ariadne: - 6 x 2 - 20/70; + 5 x 1 - 40/56 Bofors Mk III

7/1945, Apollo: - 7 x 2 - 20/70; + 6 x 1 - 40/56 Bofors Mk III

1/1946, Manxman: 3 x 2 - 102/45 Mk XIX, 1 x 4 - 40/39 VII, 4 x 2 - 20/70 Mk V, 4 x 1 - 20/70 Mk III, 100 - 156 mines

1/1946, Apollo: 2 x 2 - 102/45 Mk XIX, 2 x 2 - 40/60 Mk IV Hazemeyer, 6 x 1 - 40/60 Mk III, 100 - 156 mines

1/1946, Ariadne: 2 x 2 - 102/45 Mk XIX, 3 x 2 - 40/60 Mk IV Hazemeyer, 5 x 1 - 40/60 Mk III, 100 - 156 mines

1955, Manxman: - 1 x 2 - 102/45

Naval service: Abdiel class minelayers have become famous in days of war on Mediterranean sea, and not so much by minefields, how by supply delivery to the besieged Tobruk and Malta: sometimes, except them submarines could break only. Here the invaluable advantage highest speed of the ships and their covered mine deck was brought, on the deck it was possible to transport several hundreds tons of cargo.

All losses have fallen to Mediterranean sea: Latona 25/10/1941 has received hit of one bomb from German Ju 87 bomber off Lybian coast, the fire called by it has led to explosion of carried ammunition and the ship was sunk. Welshman was sunk by a torpedo from German submarine U617 1/2/1943 near coast of Libya. Abdiel was lost 10/9/1943 off Taranto, having stricken by a mine. Manxman as damaged by a torpedo in 1941 and has failed more than for 2 years.

Manxman was converted to depot ship for 16 coastal minesweepers. Half of boilers was removed. Armament consisted of 1 twin and 4 single 40/60-mm Bofors guns. She served as TS from 1968.

Latona 1941

Ivan Gogin, 2008-15