RFA Arndale

RFA_Arndale

 

Official Number                     165578

Class:                                     1st DALE CLASS Freighting Tanker

Pennant No:                            X 33 / B 507 / A 133

Laid down:
Builder:                                   Swan Hunter, Neptune Yard, Wallsend
Launched:                               5 August 1937
Into Service:                            September 1937
Out of service:                        1960

Fate:                                        Broken up

 

Items of historic interest involving this ship: -

 

Background Data:   Originally there were to have been 19 ships in this Class. The first 6 were purchased off the stocks from the British Tanker Co Ltd. whilst building at the instigation of the then Director of Stores, Sir William Gick, who was concerned at the age of the RFA Fleet and ships that were approaching the end of their economic lives. A further 2 ships were purchased from Anglo Saxon Petroleum Co Ltd for evaluation purposes. At the outbreak of WW2, a further 11 ships were acquired from the MoWT war programme although one of these, to have been named EPPINGDALE, which had been registered in London as EMPIRE GOLD on 21/02/43 and intended for transfer to the Admiralty for manning and management as an RFA and despite 5 Officers being appointed to her, the intended transfer was cancelled the following day and she thus never entered RFA service. 3 of this Class were converted into LSG’s and were then reconverted back into tankers at the end of the War

 

1936 ordered by the British Tanker Company Ltd, London

January 1937 laid down

5 August 1937 launched by Swan Hunter & Wigham Richardson Ltd, Wallsend as Yard Nr: 1516 named ARNDALE

450569388_o

 

RFA Arndale's ships bell

 

2 September 1937 Captain Reginald C E Neyroud RFA appointed as Master

27 September 1937 sailed on builders trials from Seaham Harbour

28 September 1937 completed

29 September 1937 maiden voyage from the Tyne - Trinidad - Gibraltar - Port Said

18 December 1937 berthed at Portsmouth Harbour

20 December 1937 sailed from Portsmouth Harbour

1 January 1938 sailed the River Tyne for Abadan

14 September 1938 Mr Frederick E Langer RFA appointed as Chief Engineer Officer

 

CEO Frederick LANGER

Chief Engineer Officer Frederick E Langer RFA

 

28 September 1938 sailed the River Tyne

3 October 1938 sailed Immigham for Scapa Flow

14 October 1938 berthed at Portsmouth Harbour

18 October 1938 sailed from Portsmouth Harbour for Abadan

15 December 1938 berthed at Auckland, New Zealand from Abadan

11 February 1939 Captain Thomas G Bennett RFA (Lieutenant Commander RN (rtd)) appointed as Master

4 May 1939 berthed at Swan Hunter's Yard at Wallsend on Tyne

12 May 1939 Mr Allan D Harris RFA appointed as Chief Engineer Officer

3 August 1939 berthed at Garden Island, Sydney, NSW from Abadan

7 August 1939 sailed Garden Island, Sydney, NSW for Melbourne, Victoria

10 August 1939 arrived at Williamstown, Victoria, Australia to discharge

11 August 1939 sailed Williamstown Victoria

6 September 1939 sailed Colombo independently to Abadan arriving 15 September 1939

18 September 1939 sailed Abadan independently to Port Said arriving on 3 October 1939

11 October 1939 sailed Port Said in convoy Blue.4 to Gibraltar arriving 21 October 1939

22 October 1939 sailed Gibraltar in convoy HG4 to Portsmouth arriving 31 October 1939 with a cargo of FFO

31 October 1939 in collision with  RFA DISTOL at Gosport Oil Fuel Jetty..

2 November 1939 Captain Benjamin N Beasley RFA appointed as Master

Captain Benjamin N Beasley

Captain Benjamin N Beasley RFA
image taken when he was a Deck Apprentice
 

9 November 1939 sailed Portsmouth Harbour and joined convoy OA33 to dispersal then independently to Trinidad arriving on 29 November 1939

1 December 1939 sailed Trinidad independently to Halifax arriving on 11 December 1939

12 December 1939 sailed Halifax in convoy HX12 arrived Liverpool 27 December 1939.

31 December 1939 sailed the Clyde to Scapa Flow under the escort of destroyers HMS FEARLESS and HMS FURY

2 January 1940 sailed Scapa Flow independently to the Clyde arriving the next day

4 January 1940 sailed the Clyde independently to Scapa Flow arriving 6 January 1940

11 January 1940 sailed Scapa Flow independently to the Clyde arriving 13 January 1940

18 January 1940 at Greenock

25 Jan 1940 repairs Clyde

6 February 1940 sailed the Clyde independently to Liverpool arriving the next day

9 February 1940 sailed Liverpool to join convoy OGF 18 at sea onward to Gibraltar arriving on 17 February 1940 and then independently to Trinidad arriving on 27 February 1940

2 March 1940 sailed Trinidad independently to River Plate and then  Port Stanley, Falkland Islands arriving on 6 April 1940

10 April 1940 sailed Port Stanley, Falkland Islands independently to Montevideo arriving 6 May 1940 

7 May 1940 sailed Montevideo independently to Rio De Janeiro arriving 1 July 1940

5 July 1940 sailed Rio De Janeriro independently to Montevideo arriving 7 August 1940

August 1940 conducted OAS trials with the cruisers HMS HAWKINS and HMS CUMBERLAND in the South Atlantic

1 December 1940 sailed Trinidad independently to Montevideo arriving 30 December 1940

8 January 1941 received stocks of fuel from RFA BROOMDALE

27 April 1941 sailed Trinidad independently to Gibraltar arriving 15 May 1941

18 July 1941 sailed Gibraltar in convoy HG68

5 August 1941 sailed Key West independently to New Orleans arriving 7 August 1941

30 August 1941 sailed New Orleans independently to Curacao arriving 6 September 1941

8 September 1941 request from the Admiralty to NOIC Trinidad for Arndale to sail to HMS Percival off Rio de Janerio area with sufficient 5" hoses for RASing by the stirrup fuelling method.

6 December 1941 refuelled the Armed Merchant Cruiser HMS QUEEN OF BERMUDA at an anchorage in the South Atlantic

HMS Queen of Bermuda

HMS QUEEN OF BERMUDA

3 January 1942 sailed Rio De Janeiro independently to Montevideo arriving 19 January 1942

21 January 1942 sailed Montevideo independently to Rio De Janeiro arriving on 10 February 1942

14 February 1942 sailed Rio De Janeiro independently to Trinidad arriving 26 February 1942

28 February 1942 Mr Charles A Drummond RFA appointed as Chief Engineer Officer

 

DRUMMOND CHARLES ALEXANDER

Chief Engineer Officer Charles A Drummond RFA

17 March 1942 sailed Trinidad independently to New Orleans arriving 26 March 1942

26 March 1942 to 28 April 1942 at New Orleans for repairs

15 May 1942 sailed Trinidad independently to Cape Town arriving 9 June 1942

19 May 1942 at 8.48N 50.00W was challenged by US Atlantic Fleet Task Force 36 (USS Ranger) proved identity and was allowed to proceed

26 June 1942 sailed Cape Town independently to Mombasa arriving 9 July 1942

1 November 1942 one of her Officers was being repatriated to the U.K., along with twenty four Ratings ex RFA GREEN RANGER and twenty nine Ratings ex RFA EAGLESDALE, aboard the MOWT troopship ss MENDOZA when the latter was torpedoed and sunk by the German submarine U-178 in the Indian Ocean about 70 miles ENE of Durban in position 29.13 S 32.13 E  whilst on an independent voyage from Mombasa to Durban. Nine RFA Ratings were killed and eight were injured

11 November 1942 Captain Howard D Gausden DSO RFA appointed as Master

Captain Howard D Gausden

Captain Howard D Gausden DSO RFA
image taken in 1919 when as an Apprentice

29 November 1942 sailed Mombasa independently to Durban arriving 11 December 1942

14 March 1943 her ex Captain, being repatriated to the U.K. aboard the Canadian Pacific liner EMPRESS OF CANADA, was killed when the latter was torpedoed and sunk by the Italian submarine LEONARDO DA VINCI in the South Atlantic approx 420 miles SSW of Cape Palmas in position 01.13 S 09.57 W whilst sailing independently on a voyage from Durban to Takoradi and the U.K

14 March 1943 at Durban Pumpman Sheik Allee Mohamed Jaffar discharged dead - liver cancer

17 March 1943 in the Admiralty War Diary the equipment of RAS equipment to an Oiler was discussed and it was suggested that RFA Arndale be so fitted during a refit -

 

Arndale RAS Equipment

 

29 June 1943 docked in the dry dock at Durban, South Africa

12 July 1943 undocked from the dry dock at Durban, South Africa

14 July 1943 Mr Harold M Pearson RFA appointed as Chief Engineer Officer

21 July 1943 off Durban during sea trials found necessary for additional work on main engine pistons - source Admiralty War Diary

8 September 1943 sailed Bandar Abbas in convoy PB55 to Bombay arriving 14 September 1943

15 September 1943 sailed Bombay in convoy BM65 to Colombo arriving 20 September 1943

16 November 1943 sailed Addu Atoll in convoy XC10 to Colombo arriving on 19 November 1943

19 December 1943 sailed Colombo in convoy JC30 to Trincomalee arriving on 22 December 1943

11 March 1944 met HMS CEYLON in the Palk Straits to undertake refuelling trials.  The trials were not successful

HMS Ceylon

HMS CEYLON

24 March 1944 in the Indian Ocean together with RFA's EASEDALE and EAGLESDALE and guarded by HNLMS Tromp rendezvoued with HMS's RENOWN and QUEEN ELIZABETH, four cruisers and six destroyers to refuel 

9 April 1944 sailed Trincomalee to Colombo arriving 11 April 1944

12 April 1944 sailed Colombo in convoy JC44A to Trincomalee arriving 14 April 1944

21 April 1944 refuelled USS Cummings (DD365) alongside at Trincomalee

USSCummingsDD365

USS Cummings (DD365)

27 April 1944 met HMS CEYLON to undertake refuelling trials using the double trough method.  The trials were not successful and superficial damage was caused to the tanker

30 April 1944 sailed Trincomalee as Task Force 67, together with R.F.A.'s EAGLEDALE,  ECHODALE,  APPLELEAF (1), PEARLEAF (1), and BACCHUS (2), escorted by HMS LONDON (Senior Officer, Captain .V. Symonds-Taylor, DSC, RN), HMS ROTHERHAM and HMNLS VAN GALEN for Operation TRANSOM.  HMS FINDHORN joined the force off the harbour entrance

30 May 1944 collision and engine defects

11 June 1944 sailed Colombo in convoy MB74C to Bombay arriving 15 June 1944

15 July 1944 repairs Brisbane

28 August 1944 in collision with the cruiser HMS CEYLON during OAS operations

15 September 1944 sailed Abadan to Bombay arriving 22 September 1944

22 September 1944 sailed Bombay to Colombo arriving 26 September 1944

26 September 1944 sailed Colombo to Trincomalee arriving 28 September 1944

3 November 1944 sailed Colombo in convoy JC66 to Trincomalee arriving 5 November 1944

20 November 1944 while on passage to Fremantle RASed HMAS's TOOWOOMBA, BURNIE, MARYBOROUGH and LISMORE astern

27 November 1944 while on passage to Fremantle RASed HMAS's TOOWOOMBA, BURNIE, MARYBOROUGH and LISMORE astern

1 and 2 December 1944 on passage to Fremantle being escorted by HMAS's TOOWOOMBA, BURNIE, MARYBOROUGH and LISMORE

12 December 1944 at Fremantle, W. Australia with HMAS BUNBURY alongside to refuel

HMAS Bunbury 125071

HMAS BUNBURY

14 December 1944 at Fremantle, W. Australia with HMAS BUNBURY alongside to refuel

21 December 1944 Mr Reginald R Darroch RFA appointed as Chief Engineer Officer

CEO Reginald R DARROCH

Chief Engineer Officer Reginald R Darroch RFA

26 December 1944 sailed Gage Roads, Fremantle in company of USS Isabel (PY70) to Onslow arriving 30 December 1944

1 January 1945 sailed Exmouth Gulf to Freemantle arriving 9 January 1945

15 January 1945 sailed Fremantle to join Force 69 consisting of RFA’s ECHODALE, EMPIRE SALVAGE and WAVE KINGin the Underway Replenishment Group for Force 63 - the Main Body for Operation Meridian 1 - along with  an unidentified oiler and  escorted by the cruiser HMS CEYLON

24 January 1945 Force 63 (supported by Force 69 which included RFA’s ECHODALE, EMPIRE SALVAGE and WAVE KING) in Operation Meridian 1 - the naval air strike on the Royal Dutch Oil Refinery at Pladjoe, the largest and most important oil refinery in the Far East

29 January 1945 Operation Meridian 11- Force 63 supported by an underway replenishment group - conducted a second strike against the Standard Oil Refinery at Soengi Gerong, the second largest refinery in the Far East

15 January 1945 sailed Fremantle to join Force 69 in Operation Meridian returning to Freemantle on 7 February 1945

6 February 1945 Captain Percivale H Brooke RFA appointed as Master

 BROOKE PERCIVAL HENRY

Captain Percivale H Brooke RFA

9 February 1945 sailed Fremantle to Sydney NSW arriving 18 February 1945

27 February 1945 sailed Sydney NSW escorted to Manus, the American base in the Admiralty Islands, in company with RFA WAVE KING arriving 9 March 1945

15 March 1945 British Pacific Fleet, re-titled as Task Force 57 took part in Operation Iceberg - the invasion of Okinawa - RFA ARNDALE and six other RFA's attached. Also refuelled HMAS's LAUNCESTON and PIRIE alongside

19 March 1945 sailed Manus in company of RFA WAVE KING and RFA BACCHUS (2) to Leyte arriving 26 March 1945

28 March 1945 to 30 March 1945 in spite of defects the overworked and undermanned oilers with inexperienced crews supported Task Force 112 with seven replenishment sorties. Other RFA’s involved were  RFA’s BACCHUS (2) (distilling ship), BROWN RANGER (water tanker), CEDARDALE, DINGLEDALE, WAVE KING and WAVE MONARCH

29 March 1945 together with RFA DINGLEDALE sailed from Leyte to area 'Midge' escorted by HMAS PIRIE

5 April 1945 during Operation Iceberg at 19.14N 125.57E at sea HMS BLACK PRINCE keeping station on her. Then together with RFA WAVE KING escorted by HMAS PIRIE back to Leyte

23 April 1945 at Leyte Gulf with HMS BLACK PRINCE alongside to be refuelled

HMS Black Prince 1944 IWM FL 2239

HMS BLACK PRINCE
© IWM Fl 2239

23 April 1945 to 30 April 1945 with the British Pacific Fleet and the Fleet Train at San Pedro Bay for rest, maintenance and storing

May 1945 took part in Operation Iceberg (2) during which nine oilers made eighteen sorties and refuelled the British Pacific Fleet on five occasions

10 May 1945 and 11 May 1945 refuelled HMAS NEPAL supplying 75 tons of FFO and HMS EURYALUS astern

12 May 1945 HMS WOODCOCK provided air defence for HMS SPEAKER, HMS RULER, tankers RFA ARNDALE, AASE MARSK, SAN AMADO and RFA DINGLEDALE, with destroyer HMS NEPAL, sloop HMS PHEASANT and Royal Australian Navy minesweepers.

15 May 1945 with Fleet Train in Area COOTIE RASing BPF ships with RN Frigates HMS WOODCOCK, HMS PHEASANT, Destroyers HMAS NIZAM, Escort Carriers HMS RULER and HMS STRIKER for defence of Fleet Train tankers RFA DINGLEDALE RFA ARNDALE, RFA WAVE KING and RFA WAVE MONARCH (Operation ICEBERG TWO)

20 May 1945 sailed Leyte under escort to Manus arriving 28 May 1945

30 May 1945 reported by the Naval Officer in charge at Manus that ARNDALE was in port this day together with RFA's BACCHUS (2), FORT DUNVEGAN, BROWN RANGER, GREEN RANGER, CEDARDALE, RAPIDOL, WAVE EMPEROR, WAVE KING and WAVE MONARCH

6 June 1945 sailed Manus to Brisbane arriving 15 June 1945

12 June 1945 Fourth Engineer Officer Samuel Teversham RFA discharged dead - accidentally shot in the neck

August 1945 attached to the British Pacific Fleet along with RFA’s BACCHUS (2), BISHOPDALE, BROWN RANGER, CEDARDALE, DINGLEDALE,  EASEDALE, GREEN RANGER, RAPIDOL, SERBOL, WAVE EMPEROR, WAVE GOVERNOR, WAVE KING, WAVE MONARCH plus HMS (later RFA) OLNA

August 1945 badly damaged by fire - repaired at Brisbane.

20 September 1945 sailed Brisbane independently to Manus arriving 29 September 1945

30 September 1945 sailed Manus independently to Hong Kong arriving 14 October 1945

2 December 1945 sailed Kilindri for Durban

2 January 1946 Seaman Ali Saleman discharged dead. He is remembered with pride on the Forces Memorial Wall, Niche 42SA of Rookwood Crematorium, Sydney, NSW, Australia

3 March 1946 sailed Gibraltar to the Tyne arriving 11 March 1946

13 March 1946 to 12 June 1946 refit on the Tyne

12 June 1946 sailed the Tyne for Port Said arriving 27 June 1946

1 July 1946 sailed Port Said to Aden arrived 9 July 1946 and then to Abadan

19 July 1946 sailed Abadan to Singapore arrived 4 August 1946

18 August 1946 sailed Singapore to Abadan arriving 3 September 1946

5 September 1946 sailed Abadan to Trincomalee arriving 16 September 1946

28 September 1946 sailed Trincomalee to Abadan arriving 9 October 1946

10 October 1946 sailed Abadan to Malta arrived 29 October 1946

4 November 1946 sailed Malta to Abadan arriving about 22 November 1946

23 November 1946 sailed Abadan for Singapore but didn'r arrive there as planned

27 November 1946 at Bandar Abbas for engine repairs which were completed by 29 November 1946

25 March 1947 while on passage from Abadan to Devonport passed Gibraltar this day

9 August 1947 at 31.55N 44.43 W at sea Pumpman Abbas Baba discharged dead having suffered a suspected heart attack

19 August 1947 sailed Curacao for LEFO

16 December 1947 Captain Frank A Shaw RFA (Lieutenant Commander RNR) appointed as Master

22 December 1947 passed the Lloyds Signal Station on the Lizard steaming west bound

29 December 1947 sailed Curacao to LEFO

18 May 1948 at Plymouth. Mr Ronald C Putt RFA appointed as Relief Chief Engineer Officer

20 May 1948 Captain Cecil R Rosen OBE RFA appointed as Master

13 July 1948 on passage from Plymouth to Abadan reached Port Said this day

20 July 1948 sailed Aden for Abadan

3 September 1948 while on passage from Devonport to Abadan passed Gibraltar this day

10 Setember 1948 arrived at Port Said

15 September 1948 sailed Suez for Abadan

27 September 1948 berthed at Abadan

12 July 1949 Mr Alexander Ballantyne OBE RFA appointed as Chief Engineer Officer

28 October 1949 Captain Robert H Venning RFA appointed as Master

10 August 1950 Captain Thomas Elder DSC RFA appointed as Master

12 August 1950 Mr J C Calvert RFA appointed as Chief Engineer Officer

23 August 1951 Captain James H Chant RFA appointed as Master

11 November 1951 Mr Harry G May RFA appointed as Chief Engineer Officer

19 January 1952 radioed she was in need of assistance in heavy weather while in the North Sea off the East coast of Scotland but when a destroyer reached her she reported she was out of danger. Her engine room was flooded. Taken in tow arriving at Rosyth Dockyard on 21 January 1952. The Portsmouth Evening News reported -

Press Cutting 19 1 52 Arndale Ports Even News

23 February 1952 at Imperial Dock, Leith Lascar 2nd Class Hussain Dawood discharged dead - he suffered a heart attack

30 March 1952 at Leith Pumpman Abdool Oosman discharged dead - he suffered a heart attack

1 April 1952 Mr J Edge RFA appointed as Chief Engineer Officer

15 November 1952 Captain Edmund H Butterworth RFA appointed as Master

 

11-06-16_EHB_003

Captain Edmund H Butterworth RFA

 

1 May 1953 in refit at Hebburn on Tyne

2 November 1953 Mr David C Leathley RFA appointed as Chief Engineer Officer

9 November 1954 Captain Frank P Hennin OBE RFA appointed as Master

21 November 1954 Mr A J Daniel RFA appointed as Chief Engineer Officer

January 1955 to February 1956 on charter to London Overseas Freighters Ltd, London

10 January 1955 Captain F G Edwards RFA appointed as Master

9 May 1955 Mr Reginald R Darroch RFA appointed as Chief Engineer Officer

28 February 1956 Captain A H Mackenzie RFA appointed as Master

6 November 1956 Mr E Smeaton RFA appointed as Chief Engineer Officer

28 November 1956 Mr T H Purvis RFA appointed as Chief Engineer Officer

28 March 1957 Captain James Jolly RFA appointed as Master

2 November 1957 Mr T J W Humphrey RFA appointed as Chief Engineer Officer

10 October 1958 Mr W Ditchburn RFA appointed as Chief Engineer Officer

12 January 1959 Captain George Robson RFA appointed as Master

12 August 1959 laid up at Rosyth

4 December 1959 advertised for sale 'as lying' at Rosyth Dockyard by the Ministry of Transport in the Times newspaper of this day

March 1960 sold to Belgian breakers

12 April 1960 arrived at Willebroek, Belgium for breaking up by Sadeica Cie Anonyme. Brussels

 

 

Notes:

 

1. She was originally destined to be one of a Class of  what was to become 93 tankers over a 15 year period, the lead ship of this Class being launched at Newcastle as BRITISH FAMEon19 June 1936

2. A member of the British Pacific Fleet - hence the 'B' pennant number

 

Additional information

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