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Postby shipstamps » Wed Sep 10, 2008 5:55 pm

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Nelson HMS.jpg
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Nelson HMS 1939.jpg
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Built as a battleship under yard 991 by Vickers .Armstrong at the Walkers Yard, Newcastle -upon-Tyne for the Royal Navy.
28 December 1922 laid down.
03 September 1925 launched under the name HMS NELSON. One of the Nelson class the other was HMS RODNEY. She was named after Vice Admiral Lord Nelson. Christened by Dame Caroline Bridgeman, wife of the First Lord of the Admiralty.
Displacement 33.313 ton standard, dim. 216.4 x 32.3 x 8.6m. (draught).
Powered by Brown Curtis geared turbines, manufactured by Wallsend Slipway & Engineering Co., 45.000 shp., twin shafts. Speed 23 knots. 8 Admiralty 3 drum boilers supplied steam to the turbines.
Bunker capacity 3.805 tons oil.
Armament when built: 9 – 16 inch, 12 – 6 inch, 6 – 4.7 inch QF HO, 6 – 2 pdr single pom poms, 4 – 3 pdr. QF, and 2 – 24 inch submerged torpedo tubes.
Complement 1.314 as flagship 1.361.
10 August 1927 final trials.
09 October 1927 commissioned in Portsmouth, under command of Capt. S.J.Meyrick.
Building cost £7.504.055.

The class was designed by Sir E. Tennyson D’Eyncourt and laid down under the terms of the Washington Naval Treaty.
When completed she was one of the heavily armed capital ships in the Royal Navy.
21 October 1927 the flag of Vice-Admiral Sir Hubert Brand was hoisted, and she became the flagship of the Commander-in-Chief, Home Fleet.
The next fourteen years she continued in this role, in that time eight Admirals hoisted their flag on board her.
She stayed till the war mostly in home waters, but went to Gibraltar for the annual spring cruises and for exercises with the Mediterranean Fleet.

During the 1930 she picked up the 22 crew of the lost Greek merchant steamer FOFO, which had sunk after an explosion in the coal cargo.

Between 1932 – 33 she got a refit.

January 1934 when leaving Portsmouth she drifted to starboard out of the narrow channel and went aground on the Hamilton Bank.

From 1937 till 1938 got a refit.

When the Second World War broke out, she was the flagship of Admiral Sir Charles Forbes and at Scapa Flow, but after the ROYAL OAK disaster she was shifted to Loch Ewe.

26 September 1939 while escorting the severely damaged submarine SPEARFISH across the North Sea with other vessels of the fleet, in a position 150 miles off the coast of Norway she was attacked by German aircraft, she was not damaged but it was realized the NELSON had not sufficient air defence.

30 October 1939 when she was sailing together with the RODNEY and HOOD and other British warships the squadron was spotted around 10.00 am. west of the Orkney Islands by the U-56 under command of Lieutenant Wilhelm Zahn. When he was in a good firing position straight ahead of the NELSON he fired three torpedoes, which were impossible to miss. Two torpedoes hit the NELSON bud did not explode, the third missed.

21 November 1939 she left port together with her sistership HMS RODNEY to intercept the German warships GNEISENAU, SCHARNHORST, KOLN, LEIPZIG north east of the Shetlands, the attempt to intercept the warships was a failure, and she returned to Loch Ewe on the west coast of Scotland.

04 December 1940 by entering Loch Ewe she sailed over a magnetic mine, whereupon her hull activated the mine, which exploded, there was much damage and 73 crewmembers were wounded. And the next 8th months she spend in dock at Portsmouth for repair.

06 June 1940 she sailed from Portsmouth to the Clyde to complete her refit. After her refit was finished she joined the Home Fleet again in Scapa Flow.

06 September 1940 she sailed from Scapa Flow with the Home Fleet in operations off the Norwegian coast, only one enemy ship was sunk and an other abandoned.

06 November 1940 together with the RODNEY and supporting warships she sailed from Scapa Flow to look for the ADMIRAL SCHEER in the Iceland-Faroes passage. Did not find her and returned to Scapa Flow on 13 November 1940.

Took part in the Lofoten Island raid in Operation Claymore in October 1941 together with KING GEORGE V and the cruisers EDINBURG and NIGERIA, the capital ships did give protection during the landings.

At the end of March 1941 she escorted a troop convoy to Cape Town.

July 1941 she joined Force H at Gibraltar to protect the vital convoys to Malta. On 27 September an aerial torpedo while escorting a convoy in Operation Halberd damaged her, and she returned to the U.K for repairs and a refit.

After a refit and repairs she joined Force H again and became flagship of Admiral Syfret.
May 1942 did give cover to a convoy to Freetown.

She did give cover to a convoy of 14 merchant ships in Operation Pedestal in August 1942. It was a very important convoy, and heavily guarded by warships, when this convoy was lost Malta had to surrender.

November 1942 took part in Operation Torch, the allied landings in North Africa, and the invasion of Sicily during Operation Husky in July 1943. Operation Hammer, bombardment in Messina Straits during August and in Operation Avalanche during the allied landings at Salerno in September 1943.

29 September 1943 the Armistice was signed with Italy on board the HMS NELSON by General Dwight D Eisenhower and Marshal Pietro Badoglio in Malta.

1944 She got a refit, her armament was increased by 44 - 20mm AA guns later increased to 65 – 20mm AA guns.

July 1944 took part in Operation Neptune (D-Day landings) the allied landings in Normandy, where more as 5000 ships took men and equipment across the English Channel. The NELSON left Scapa Flow 2 July 1944 via Milford Haven and Plymouth, left Solent 11 July at 05.57am and arrived Gold 12.36 the same day (Bombarding force reserve): She carried out 22 bombardments on enemy positions ashore. Superficially damaged by mine 18th July at 19.30 en route to Solent where she arrived the next day 00.05 in route for Philadelphia. She underwent 6 months repair at Philadelphia.

After her return to active service she sailed back to England before joining the East Indies Fleet. Arrived Colombo early July, then used in operations against Japanese forces in Malaya.
03 September the formal surrender of Penang was signed on board the NELSON, and she took part in the reoccupation of Western Malaya.
12 September she was at Singapore when the official surrender ceremony of all Japanese forces in South East Asia took place.

13 November she sailed home and during 1946 used as training battleship.

1947 De-commissioned at Portsmouth.
15 March 1949 sold to Thomas Ward, Shipbreakers of Inverkeithing for scrap, as she lay in the Firth of Forth, she was used before at anchor as target for bombing attacks by aircraft.

1950 The breaking up of the HMS NELSON was completed.

Source: Some web-sites. Warships for Export by Peter Brook. The D-Day Ships by John de S Winser.
British Battleships 1892-1957. Ships of the World by Lincoln P Paine.
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Postby Arturo » Sat Apr 12, 2014 10:52 am

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HMS Nelson

Ghana, 1998, S.G.?, Scott; 2037c.
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