Neville P, Gilroy - Seaman 1A who died this day - RFA Black Rover 2003.
John, Stroughair - Donkeyman Greaser who died this day - RFA Olna (2) 1958.
Henry, Pawsey - Fireman who died this day - RFA Mollusc 1918.
Previous name: HMS Ringdove
Subsequent name: Telima
Official Number: 132764
Class: REDBREAST CLASS Gunboat (originally)
Pennant No: X37 / X40
Laid down: 1 June 1888
Builder: HM Dockyard, Devonport
Launched: 30 April 1889
Into Service: 7 December 1915
Out of service: 22 January 1920
Fate: Sold out of service commerically
Items of historic interest involving this ship: -
Background Data: She was one of a Class of 9 gunboats 2 of which were converted into Salvage Ships, designed by Sir William Henry White, the Royal Navy Director of Naval Construction in 1888, which were the last of the composite-hulled gunboats built for the Royal Navy. The Class consisted of HM ships GOLDFINCH, LAPWING, MAGPIE, REDBREAST, REDPOLE, RINGDOVE, SPARROW, THRUSH and WIDGEON
30 April 1889 launched by HM Dockyard, Devonport as the composite gunboat HMS RINGDOVE
November 1889 conducted trils off Malta - reached 11 knots in a 'choppy sea'
16 September 1890 commissioned for service in Australian waters with Lieutenant Commander E Bain, Royal Navy in command
4 October 1890 underwent a three hour full power trial off Plymouth developing 709 horse power and speeds of upwards of 13 knots
13 October 1890 underwent further trials over ten days in the Channel
12 November 1890 delayed at Plymouth pending the Admiralty's decision as to whether the 1st Lieutenant - Lieutenant Philip J Hodges Royal Navy - should be Court Martialed over a personal matter
24 November 1890 arrived at Gibraltar to bunker - sailed 26 November 1890 for Malta
2 December 1890 arrived at Malta
19 December 1890 arrived at Port Said
30 December 1890 arrived at Aden and sailed 2 January 1891
20 January 1891 sailed Colombo, Ceylon for Australia
2 February 1891 arrived at Batavia and sailed the same day
17 February 1891 arrived at Thursday Island
22 February 1891 sailed Thursday Island
21 July 1891 arrived at Brisbane from the Solomon Islands
24 August 1891 arrived at Cooktown from New Guinea
23 April 1897 arrived at Tandjong Priok and sailed 26 April 1897 for the Seychelles
15 May 1897 arrived at the Seychelles
21 May 1897 sailed the Seychelles for Aden
28 May 1897 arrived at Aden
31 May 1897 sailed Aden for England
8 June 1897 arrived at Port Said, sailing the next day for Malta
15 June 1897 arrived at Malta and sailed 21 June 1897 for Plymouth
28 June 1897 arrived at Gibraltar from Malta, sailing the same day for Plymouth
4 July 1897 returned to Devonport
17 July 1897 paid off into the fleet reserve at Devonport
15 October 1897 underwent a two hour trial in the Channel off Plymouth
9 November 1897 recommissioned at Devonport for a further 4 years service - Commander Ralph P Ayscough Royal Navy in command
18 November 1897 sailed Devonport
3 December 1897 arrived at Malta from Gibraltar
13 December 1897 sailed Malta for Port Said
17 December 1897 arrived at Port Said
27 December 1897 arrived at Aden
30 December 1897 sailed Aden for Colombo
13 January 1898 arrived at Colombo
17 January 1898 sailed Colombo for Sydney, NSW
18 February 1898 sailed Thursday Island for Sydney, NSW
28 February 1898 arrived at Townsville and sailed the next day for Sydney, NSW
17 March 1898 arrived at Sydney NSW
20 May 1907 Lieutenant W W Wilson Royal Navy appointed in command
18 December 1912 Lieutenant L M Darbyshire Royal Navy in command
1914 to 1915 on the Examination Service at Queenstown, Ireland
November 1915 taken in hand for conversion into a Salvage Vessel
7 December 1915 Was renamed MELITA
3 January 1916 Engineer Lieutenant Walter M Murdoch RNR appointed as Chief Engineer Officer. He signed off on 1 October 1917
29 January 1916 Lieutenant Horace A Gauld RNR appointed in command. He was transferred on 17 April 1917 to RFA Racer
4 July 1916 Stoker Petty Officer Hugh Rooney discharged dead - drowned. He was cremated at Edinburgh (Seafield) Crematorium and remembered on the Screen Wall in the Cemetery
Courtesy and © of The War Graves Photographic Project
1917 re-entered service as a Salvage Vessel
17 April 1917 Lieutenant John W Miskin RNR appointed in command. Had previously been Chief Officer.
2 July 1917 Rigger Albert Seager logged as deserting. He had signed on on 27 May 1916
1 October 1917 Engineer Lieutenant William H Reynolds RNR appointed as Chief Engineer Officer
16 October 1917 Lieutenant W Thomas-Pryce RNR appointed in command
29 November 1917 Rigger John F Harwood discharged dead. He had signed on on the 26 May 1916. He drowned at Leith, Scotland and is buried in an unmarked grave in Edinburgh (Seafield) Cemetery.
Panel 6 remembers Rigger Harwood
12 January 1918 HMS Opal and HMS Narborough, both destroyers reported missing while enroute to Scapa Flow in heavy snow. RFA Melita advised not required for the search as the destroyers must be assumed to have foundered.
14 January 1918 wreckage of two destroyers found at Windwick Bay at 58 46N 2 0W RFA Melita directed to sail to Aberdeen. One survivor (AB William Sissons) from HMS Opal found. Court of Enquiry set up.
6 July 1918 Rigger George Metcalf logged as deserting. He had signed on 6 May 1918.
4 September 1918 Fireman John A Gordon logged as deserting. He had signed on on 5 September 1917
18 September 1918 Lieutenant James Ellias RNR appointed in command
27 June 1919 offered for sale by the Admiralty - advertised in the Times - the ship was lying at Liverpool
22 January 1920 sold to Ship Salvage Corporation (J.R. Delanet, Manager) Plymouth and was renamed TELIMA
13 March 1920 involved with other ships in the salvage of a Norwegian ship Morgana which lost her propeller off the Yorkshire coast. Awarded £300 in a subsequernt claim in the Admiralty division of the High Court and reported in the Times on the 23 June 1920
21 December 1920 at Gravesend brought in by tow the steamer Limehouse to anchor after being salvaged
6 June 1921 at 54.52N 5.34W Labourer Albert Oldershaw discharged dead - missing at sea presumed drowned
1926 reported broken up during the 2nd quarter of this year
Ships of the same name
Melita. An Algerine class minesweeper built by Redfern, Toronto and launched on the 8 December 1942, she was reduced to a drill ship in April 1947 and renamed Satellite. Arrived at Rees, Llanelli for breaking up on the 25 February 1959.
Battle Honours for this Vessel: NORMANDY 1944, ATLANTIC 1945, EAST INDIES 1945.