RFA Olcades

RFA Olcades

 

 

 
British_Beacon-05
 
 

British_Beacon

 

Previous name:                        British Beacon     
Subsequent name:

Official Number:                       142670

Class:                                     10000t OL CLASS Tanker

Pennant No:                           Y7.304 /  X18

Laid down:
Builder:                                   Workman Clark & Co Ltd, Belfast
Launched:                               9 September 1918
Into Service:                            9 October 1918
Out of service:                         April 1953
Fate:                                       Broken up

 

Items of historic interest involving this ship: -

 

Background Data:   Of the 6 ships in this Class, two of them were built by HM Dockyards to keep the Dockyards busy after the end of WW1 in accordance with the Colwyn Committee‘s recommendations.. two other similar ships were built for Anglo Saxon Petroleum Co Ltd, London at the same time - MUREXat Portsmouth and NASSAat Devonport - and after producing these 2 well-built ships, the finances and materials appeared to be short and the 2 built for the RFA were supposedly built with odds and ends and auxiliaries taken from outmoded warships. With their cheap and second-hand fittings they had some heavy maintenance bills, which they paid for by spending most of their lives on charter. MUREX and NASSA were both broken up at Osaka in 1936

 

9 September 1918 launched by Workman Clark & Co Ltd, Belfast as Yard Nr 425 named BRITISH  BEACON for the Shipping Controller

9 October 1918 completed and placed under management of British Tanker Co, London. Cost £246,108

1919 transferred to Admiralty ownership but remained under commercial management

10 March 1919 as RFA BRITISH  BEACON berthed at Hull after arriving from Philadelphia

3 August 1919 as RFA BRITISH  BEACON berthed at Rangoon from Philadelphia via Alexandria

4 March 1920 as RFA BRITISH  BEACON passed Sand Key, Florida

8 March 1920 as RFA BRITISH  BEACON berthed at Port Arthur, Texas

19 May 1920 as RFA BRITISH  BEACON berthed at Port Eads from Devonport. RFA WAR HINDOO berthed at the same port on the same day but from Portsmouth

18 August 1920 as RFA BRITISH BEACON berthed at Portsmouth Harbour after arriving from Tampico

3 September 1920 sailed Portsmouth Harbour

14 April 1921 as RFA BRITISH BEACON sailed Port Arthur, Texas to the Clyde

2 May 1921 as RFA BRITISH BEACON arrived at the Clyde from Port Arthur

2 June 1921 as RFA BRITISH BEACON radioed US Naval Radio Station she was 10 miles NE of St Augustine

22 June 1921 as RFA BRITISH  BEACON arrived at Sheerness from Abadan via Gibraltar

7 November 1921 damaged the battle cruiser HMS RENOWN at Suez

1 February 1922 berthed at Portsmouth Harbour

4 February 1922 sailed Portsmouth Harbour

8 November 1923 to 22 December 1923 berthed on the Oil Wharf, Singapore

27 February 1924 sailed Abadan for Sydney, NSW

5 March 1924 sailed Colombo, Ceylon

27 March 1924 berthed Sydney, NSW moored to the Admiralty buoys off Garden Island

9 April 1924 while still moored to the Admiralty buoys (above) HMS DUNEDIN and HMS DRAGON berthed alongside her to be refuelled

11 April 1924 at Sydney, NSW alongside HMS REPULSE to refuel her

12 April 1924 0800 at Sydney, NSW alongside HMS HOOD to refuel her with 2,894 tons of FFO.  Cast off at 1930hrs to No: 18 buoy

25 April 1924 sailed Sydney, NSW to Balik Papan, Borneo to load and then to Vancouver, BC, Canada

28 June 1924 at Vancouver, BC, Canada alongside HMS REPULSE to refuel her

9 July 1924 at San Francisco, USA alongside HMS REPULSE to refuel her

4 November 1924 at Ross Memorial Hospital, Dingwall Greaser William Arthur Evans discharged dead with a skull injury

26 December 1924 at Stanley Harbour Able Seaman Benjamin Jackson discharged dead - drowned

14 May 1925 at 37.25N 29.35W Chief Steward Robert Fraser discharged dead from natural causes

4 August 1927 at sea at 55.03N 1.13W Greaser Guiseppe Bugeya discharged dead - alleged that he was struck on head with a spanner by Fireman F J Tait

1 July 1929 sailed Curacao to Shell Haven with Captain Ernest E Anderson as Master with two DBS passengers

 Ernest E ANDERSON

Captain Ernest E Anderson

26 October 1929 berthed at Portsmouth Harbour

17 November 1929 sailed from Portsmouth Harbour

24 September 1930 berthed at Portsmouth Harbour

1 November 1930 sailed from Portsmouth Harbour

January 1931 to April 1931 laid up at Devonport

25 April 1932 berthed at Portsmouth Harbour

12 July 1932 sailed from Portsmouth Harbour

12 September 1932 until 22 September 1932 berthed at Simonstown Dockyard, South Africa

19 November 1932 until 9 December 1932 berthed at Simonstown Dockyard, South Africa

17 November 1933 berthed at Portsmouth Harbour

20 November 1933 sailed from Portsmouth Harbour

15 June 1934 until 4 July 1934 berthed at Simonstown Dockyard, South Africa

21 August 1934 berthed at Portsmouth Harbour

23 August 1934 sailed from Portsmouth Harbour

20 November 1934 berthed at Portsmouth Harbour

22 November 1934 sailed from Portsmouth Harbour

5 June 1936 berthed at Portsmouth Harbour

8 June 1936 sailed from Portsmouth Harbour

7 September 1936 berthed at Gibraltar from Abadan and Port Said to discharge

12 January 1937 transferred to Admiralty management and manning as an RFA and renamed  OLCADES at Rosyth

21 February 1937 to 26 February 1932 berthed at Simonstown Dockyard, South Africa

11 March 1937 berthed at Gibraltar from Abadan and Port Said to discharge

November 1937 partly fitted for defensive armament by Mackinnon, Mackenzie & Co at Bombay

21 February 1938 berthed at Simonstown Dockyard, South Africa

26 February 1938 sailed Simonstown Dockyard, South Africa

11 April 1938 to 18 April 1938 towed the gate vessel HMS SANDGATE from Singapore to Trincomalee

7 July 1938 berthed at Singapore

28 October 1938 Mr G A Calvert RFA appointed as Chief Engineer Officer

November 1938 defensive armament completed and gun trials carried out

7 November 1938 Captain R H P Meyhew RFA appointed as Master

10 July 1939 Mr C J Falconer RFA appointed as Chief Engineer Officer

3 September 1939 at Portsmouth on the outbreak of WW2

29 December 1939 slightly damaged while fuelling the carrier HMS EAGLE at Mahe in the Seychelles

30 December 1939 sustained damage when fuelling the armed merchant cruiser HMS CATHAY in the Seychelles. Repairs were carried out at Colombo the following  month

24 May 1940 grounded on an uncharted rock in Trincomalee Harbour - slight damage

1 December 1940 docked in the dry dock at Durban

3 December 1940 undocked from the dry dock at Durban

24 February 1941 damaged when going alongside the cruiser HMS GLASGOW

25 February 1941 off Port Louis, Mauritius with HMAS AUSTRALIA alongside being refuelled

7 March 1941 refuelled HMS LEANDER and HMAS CANBERRA both alongside while at anchor at Port Louis, Mauritius. HMS LEANDER received 1,084 tons of FFO and HMAS CANBERRA 1,835 tons

 Leander

HMS LEANDER

1 April 1941 at Port Louis, Mauritius with HMAS CANBERRA alongside being refuelled - issued 810 tons of FFO

canberra at sea 1

HMAS CANBERRA

8 November 1941 at Durban Fireman's Cook Kurok Khan discharged dead - suicide by hanging in a police cell ashore

29 November 1941 docked in the dry dock at Durban

4 December 1941 undocked from the dry dock at Durban

18 December 1941 berthed at Capetown, South Africa

23 December 1941 sailed Capetown for Port Louis, Mauritius - speed of advance 9½ knots

4 January 1942 arrived at Mauritius from the Cape under escort of Armed Merchant Cruiser HMS HECTOR to serve as the station oiler

31 January 1942 at Mauritius

31 March 1942 at Mauritius

11 May 1942 Captain William W Peddle RFA appointed as Master

 

PEDDLE_WM_WALTER

Captain William W Peddle RFA

 

29 August 1942 at Mahebourg, Mauritius Oilman Hoossein Kadir discharged dead - natural causes

22 December 1942 damaged by the South African Railways Administration tug T.H. WATERMEYER at Cape Town

28 January 1943 Mr Eric S Fielder RFA appointed as Chief Engineer Officer

1942 to 1943 crankshaft trouble reduced her to a fuelling hulk at Bombay. Her Chief Engineer, ship’s engineers and two fitters from Mazagan repaired the defect, involving handling  weights of 20 tons under tropical conditions and she re-entered full service on completion

27 April 1943 after a refit was allocated as the Base Oiler at Bombay

9 November 1943 at Bombay with HMAS CESSNOCK alongside being refueled

26 January 1944 at Bombay with HMAS CESSNOCK alongside being refueled

3 February, 1944 at Bombay with HMAS BATHURST alongside being refueled

18 February 1944 Mr Thomas H Purvis RFA appointed as Chief Engineer Officer

29 February 1944 at Bombay with HMAS CESSNOCK alongside being refueled

4 March 1944 at Bombay with HMAS BATHURST alongside being refueled

13 July 1944 damaged whilst alongside and fuelling the carrier HMS VICTORIOUS

14 August 1945 at Salisbury Island, Durban used as a test load for Admiralty Floating Dock AFD31 which had been completed in a sand berth in Durban Harbour. The load test was carried out at the floating dock berth at the new Naval Base at Salisbury Island

18 October 1945 entered dry dock at Durban

19 November 1945 undocked from the dry dock at Durban

1946 replaced RFA RUTHENIA as jetty and pumping station at Woodlands Naval Tank Storage facility at Singapore until the fuel lines ashore were restored and a new jetty  was built in 1952

1952 after a serious fire at Singapore, was sold to BISCO for demolition

29 October 1952 sailed Singapore in tow of the British tug ENGLISHMAN. While crossing the Bay of Biscay, she broke adrift and again caught fire. After the fire had been extinguished, the tow was reconnected

31 January 1953 again broke adrift during a gale

1 February 1953 ran aground at Barton Gap in Norfolk

 OLCADES aground

15 April 1953 was refloated and continued in tow to Blyth

19 April 1953 arrived at Blyth for breaking up by Hughes Bolckow Shipbreaking Co Ltd.

 

Additional information

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