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Victoria and Albert III (Royal Yacht)

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Victoria and Albert III (Royal Yacht)

Postby john sefton » Fri Jun 28, 2013 8:49 pm

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HMY Victoria and Albert III was a royal yacht of the Royal Navy of the United Kingdom. The yacht was designed by the Chief Constructor of the Royal Navy Sir William White, launched in 1899 and ready for service in 1901. This was the third yacht to be named 'Victoria and Albert' and she was fitted with steam engines fired by Belleville water-tube boilers. She served four sovereigns, and was decommissioned as royal yacht in 1939, served in the Second World War, and was broken up in 1954.
Queen Victoria had lobbied Parliament for many years for a more modern yacht – HMY Victoria and Albert II dated from 1855, and won this expenditure after pointing out that both the Russian Tsar and the German Kaiser had larger and more modern yachts than Great Britain. Built at Pembroke Dock and launched in 1899, she was completed in the summer 1901, severn months after the death of Queen Victoria.
The vessel measured 380 feet (120 m) in length by 40 feet (12 m) in the beam with a tonnage of 4,700. The total cost of the ship was £572,000, five-sevenths the cost of the battleship HMS Renown. During fitting-out the yacht had significant extra weight added including concrete ballast and even a large traditional capstan so the Queen could be entertained by watching the sailors work. This extra weight proved to be beyond the original design parameters and resulted in the ship tipping over when the dock was flooded – causing significant damage to the ship. Designer Sir William White was exonerated from direct responsibility, but lost confidence and resigned his role as Chief Constructor shortly afterwards.
HMY Victoria and Albert III was commissioned at Portsmouth 23 July 1901 by Commondore the Hon. Hedworth Lambton, who hoisted his burgee. Practically the whole crew of 230 men of the old Victoria and Albert II were transferred to the new yacht, which with an additional 100 men had a total crew of 336.
King Edward VII and Queen Alexandra visited their new yacht in early August 1901, and used it for the first time when crossing the English Channel 9 August 1901 to attend the funeral in Germany of the King´s sister, Empress Frederick.
King Edward later used the yacht for summer cruises most years of his reign, visiting various countries in Europe.
Victoria and Albert later served King George V, King Edward VIII and King George VI, and took part in two fleet reviews (in 1935 and the Coronation Review of the Fleet, 1937), but was withdrawn after the latter and decommissioned in 1939. She served as a depot ship during the Second World War, as an accommodation ship to HMS Excellent, and was broken up in 1954.
During 1947, while moored alongside at Whale Island, her caretaker was Mr J.G. "Tom" Cox BEM, RN. He was responsible for the care of her contents, some of which were selected for eventual use in HMY Britannia. Even in retirement she was a sumptuous yacht.
Although there were plans for a new yacht to be built these were suspended due to the outbreak of the Second World War. Eventually HMY Britannia replaced her in 1954.

Tuvalu SG170, 187.
john sefton
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Joined: Sun Mar 22, 2009 1:59 pm

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