RFA Wave Knight
RFA Wave Knight
RFA Wave Knight (1)
Previous name: Empire Naseby
Official Number: 180875
Class: WAVE CLASS Replenishment Oiler (modified)
Pennant No: X139 / A249
Builder: Sir J Laing & Sons Ltd, Sunderland
Launched: 22 October 1945
Into Service: 28 January 1947
Out of service: 1964
Fate: Broken up
Items of historic interest involving this ship: -
Background Data: A need for fast tankers to bring oil into the country had been envisaged early in the Second World War, but by the time the material had been collected and the Yards had space to build them, the need had largely passed and the original design of diesel-engined ships was abandoned. Instead, the standard 12000t Class being built were given sharper bows and sterns and turbine engines with water tube boilers. In all, 21 of this type were built and were offered to the Admiralty, who wanted faster tankers for the Pacific Fleet Train. The Admiralty took 20 of them ( the final vessel being completed commercially for Oil and Molasses Tankers Ltd, London as BEECHWOOD) and renamed them with the WAVE nomenclature. Performance varied considerably from ship to ship and they underwent various modifications in their rigs for RAS work. The 8 best ones were finally given an extensive refit, with extra accommodation added to the Bridge Deck and extra turbo cargo pumps and derricks to make them more satisfactory for Fleet work. Initially expensive to run, they recouped some of their expensive repair bills by earning revenues from charter work after the Korean War. From this Class was evolved the TIDE CLASS oilers.
22 October 1945 launched by Sir James Laing & Sons Ltd, Sunderland as Yard Nr 764 named EMPIRE NASEBY for the MoWT
3 December 1945 sailed Sunderland in tow to the River Tyne arriving the same day
4 April 1946 sailed the River Tyne to the Sunderland
31 May 1946 completed and placed under initial management of Tankers Ltd, London. Sailed Sunderland to the Tyne arriving the same day
8 June 1946 sailed the Tyne, passed Prawle Point, 9 June 1946, passed Gibraltar 12 June 1946 to Suez arrived 18 June 1946. At Aden 22 June 1946 to Abadan
29 June 1946 sailed Abadan to Bombay arriving 4 July 1946
6 July 1946 sailed Bombay to Trincomalee arriving 10 July 1946
19 July 1946 sailed Trincomalee to Abadan
28 July 1946 sailed Abadan to Suez arriving on 10 August 1946
12 August 1946 reported engine trouble
27 August 1946 arrived and sailed Port Said to Malta
4 September 1946 passed Gibraltar arriving at the Downs and Sheerness on 9 September 1946
11 September 1946 sailed Sheerness to the River Tyne arriving 15 September 1946
21 October 1946 sailed the Tyne passing Gibraltar on 26 October 1946 and arrived at Port Said 31 October 1946
1 November 1946 sailed Suez but put back with engine trouble arriving at Port Said 17 November 1946
27 November 1946 sailed Port Said to Gibraltar
5 December 1946 sailed Gibraltar to Sheerness arriving on 11 December 1946
17 December 1946 arrived at the Tyne from Sheerness
4 January 1947 Mr William J Brown OBE DSC RFA appointed as Chief Engineer Officer
27 January 1947 Captain Frederick S Harvey RFA appointed as Master
28 January 1947 transferred to Admiralty management and renamed WAVE KNIGHT (1)
7 February 1947 undertook engine trials off the River Tyne
14 February 1947 sailed the River Tyne to Portland arriving on 16 February 1947
16 February 1947 sailed Portland to Gibraltar arriving 19 February 1947
19 February 1947 sailed Gibraltar to Port Said arriving 24 February 1947
25 February 1947 after transit of the Suez Canal sailed arriving Aden on 1 March 1947
1 March 1947 sailed Aden to Abadan arriving 7 March 1947
1 April 1947 arrived at Port Said from Abadan and sailed, passing Gibraltar on 7 April 1947
11 April 1947 arrived at Devonport
17 April 1947 sailed Devonport to Killingholme passing Spurn Head on 18 April 1947
15 August 1948 Captain Leslie J Mack DSO RFA appointed as Master
23 February 1949 off Gibraltar engaged in exercises with HMS Vanguard, HMS Superb and HMS Reward
18 June 1949 Mr J S Aitken RFA appointed as Chief Engineer Officer
16 September 1949 at Trincomalee Apprentice Barry Lockett discharged dead - drowned
10 December 1949 berthed Chowder Bay, Sydney, Australia from Abadan to discharge
13 December 1949 Seaman John McClure discharged dead. While the ship was in the Captain Cook Dry Dock at Sydney, NSW, Australia he fell while working in the boiler room, He was buried in Eastern Suburbs Memorial Park Cemetery, Botany on the 15 December 1949 in Grave 689
21 December 1949 sailed Sydney, Australia for Abadan
4 to 6 January 1950 alongside at Singapore
13 May 1950 berthed at Auckland, New Zealand
25 June 1950 to 27 July 1953 saw service during the Korean War along with 18 other RFA’s and was awarded the Korea 1951-53 Battle Honour.
7 July 1950 Captain H W Flint RFA appointed as Master
9 July 1951 Captain James Jolly RFA appointed as Master
5 August 1951 Mr R R Darrock RFA appointed as Chief Engineer Officer
23 August 1951 sailed Malta for Cyprus
October 1951 with RFA Blue Ranger supported Exercise Symphonic Deux with units of the Royal Navy, the Royal Canadian Navy and the French Navy
5 January 1952 sailed Malta to Curacao to load cargo
20 April 1952 Captain B Smith RFA appointed as Master
18 September 1952 Mr J A Swallow RFA appointed as Chief Engineer Officer
29 January 1953 at Sasebo, Japan with HMAS ANZAC alongside being refuelled
11 Ferbruary 1953 at Yongpyong Do, Korea refuelled HMAS ANZAC alongside
12 February 1953 off Korea RAS'ed with HMS CHARITY, USS HANNA and USS COLLETT. then sailed escorted by USS COLLETT to the Hajeu station
18 February 1953 off Korea in the Hajeu station RAS'ed with USS HANNA
27 February 1953 off Korea RAS'ed with HMAS ANZAC
5 March 1953 at Yongpyong Do, Korea refuelled HMAS ANZAC and HMAS CONDAMINE alongside
6 March 1953 RAS'ed with HMS BIRMINGHAM protected by HMAS ANZAC and two frigates
9 March 1953 at Yongpyong Do, Korea refuelled HMAS ANZAC alongside
13 March 1953 at Yongpyong Do, Korea refuelled HMAS ANZAC and HMAS CONDAMINE alongside
15 March 1953 sailed from Yongpyong Do, Korea escorted by HMAS ANZAC and anchored at Taechong Do, Korea with HMNZS HAWEA and HNMS JOHAN MAURITS VAN NASSAU berthed alongside to refuel. Sailed later the same day for Sasebo, Japan escorted by HMCS HAIDA
31 March 1953 at Yongpyong Do, Korea with HMS CHARITY alongside being refuelled
1 April 1953 at Yongpyong Do, Korea with HMAS ANZAC alongside being refuelled - she received 385 tons of FFO
12 April 1953 at Yongpyong Do, Korea refuelled HMAS ANZAC alongside
15 April 1953 at Yongpyong Do, Korea refuelled HMAS ANZAC alongside
11 June 1953 at Taechong Do, Korea refuelled HMAS ANZAC alongside
13 June 1953 while on passage to Hong Kong RAS'ed with HMAS ANZAC
14 October 1953 Mr K Jones RFA appointed as Chief Engineer Officer
6 November 1953 Captain S Thomas RFA appointed as Master
14 November 1954 exercised with HMS Cardigan Bay and HMS Cockade off the coast of Malaysia
1 September 1955 Captain James Jolly RFA appointed as Master
25 March 1956 with RFA Fort Sandusky sailed from SIngapore being escorted by HMNZS' Kaniere and Pukaki to take part in exercise Monsoon
18 November 1956 Captain D A C Butler RFA appointed as Master
21 November 1956 Mr J E Kennedy RFA appointed as Chief Engineer Officer
1957 to 1960 supported Operation Grapple - the British H-bomb test at Christmas Island in the Pacific Ocean - along with 16 other RFA’s
5 December 1957 Captain James H Chant RFA appointed as Master
14 February 1958 Mr W G Downing RFA appointed as Chief Engineer Officer
29 April 1958 berthed at Singapore with RN, RAN, RNZN, and other Allied units prior to sailing for Operation Ocean Link
June 1958 RASed with HMS CARDIGAN BAY
13 September 1958 Humanitarian Aid - in company with HM ships BULWARK, PUMA, LOCH KILLISPORT, LOCH ALVIE and ST BRIDES BAY she assisted in the salvage of the m.v. MELIKA and m.v. FERNAND GILBERT which had collided and were on fire in the Gulf of Oman. MELIKA was towed to Muscat by HMS BULWARK, whilst. FERNAND GILBERT, initially taken in tow by ST BRIDE’S BAY, was towed to Karachi by HMS LOCH KILLISPORT
27 October 1958 anchored off Muscat
28 October 1958 sailed from Muscat
17 December 1958 sailed Malta to Gibraltar - arriving 21 December 1958
17 December 1959 Mr G Thompson RFA appointed as Chief Engineer Officer
January 1960 Captain G O W Evans RFA appointed as Master
31 May 1960 Captain C Alexander DSC RFA appointed as Master
14 June 1960 Donkeyman Greaser Spiridione Borg discharged dead. He is buried in Portland Royal Naval Cemetery, Portland, Dorset
24 June 1960 berthed in Malta having sailed from the UK
17 July 1960 arrived at Malta from Famagusta, Cyprus
4 August 1960 Mr J P Mair RFA appointed as Chief Engineer Officer
24 February 1961 on passage from Pireaus to Malta RASed with HMS BERMUDA
13 June 1961 RASed with HMS's KEPPEL and GRAFTON which were on passage from Portland to Lisbon. HMS GRAFTON supplied with 64 tons of FFO
14 June 1961 engaged in exercise with HMS KEPPEL
15 June 1961 in the Bay of Biscay RASed astern with HMS's KEPPEL and GRAFTON - HMS GRAFTON supplied with 50 tons of FFO
3 July 1961 sailed Malta with RFA Fort Duquesne for Kuwait to give support for British Forces after Iraq forces threatened to invade Kuwait.
18 August 1961 returned to Malta with RFA Fort Rosalie after visiting Ajaccio and Rapallo
25 October 1961 Mr Ronald C Putt RFA appointed as Chief Engineer Officer
Chief Engineer Officer Ronald C Putt RFA
2 December 1961 Captain J Coull RFA appointed as Master
10 March 1962 to 11 March 1962 She received 7380 tons of fuel oil and 995 tons of diesel fuel in 18 hours from RFA ORANGELEAF (2) in the North Atlantic during very bad weather.
13 March 1962 to 29 March 1962 During this period she refuelled 55 ships of the Canadian, French and Netherlands Navies. This included 13 night sorties and 19 occasions during which 2 ships were refuelled simultaneously.
17 May 1962 Captain B V Dobbie RFA appointed as Master
16 June 1962 arrived Malta from Gibraltar
23 June 1962 sailed Malta for Crete
25 July 1962 arrived at Malta from Tobruk
17 January 1963 sailed Malta for Taranto, Italy with RFA Fort Sandusky
28 January 1963 sent to assist a 85 ton trawler Ekede which had radioed he was in trouble in heavy seas 20 miles south east of Delimara Point, Malta. The trawler was escorted into Marsalokk Harbour
2 April 1963 arrived at Malta
9 April 1963 Mr C M Collis RFA appointed as Chief Engineer Officer
26 April 193 arrived Malta from Barcelona, Spain
May 1963 Pumpman Carmelo Ellul presened with the British Empire Medal by H E The Governor of Malta onboard after 43 years service.
15 June 1963 Captain R R Lockwood RFA appointed as Master
1964 her Ship’s Badge was officially presented to her.
20 August 1964 after a period of lay-up at Devonport she was placed on the Disposal List and was offered for sale “as lies Devonport“ in The Times newspaper of this day after negotiations to sell her to India fell through.
September 1964 purchased by Scrappingco, Willebroek for scrap
16 October 1964 sailed Plymouth in tow for the breakers.
19 October 1964 arrived Antwerp Roads enroute to the breakers at Willebroek.
RFA Wave Knight (2)
RFA Wave Knight (2) tank deck
Courtesy of and copyright © The Royal Gazette,
Class: Wave Class Large Fleet tanker
Pennant No: A389
Laid down: 22 May 1998
Builder: BAE Systems, Barrow
Launched: 29 September 2000
Into Service: 8 April 2003
Out of service:
In June 1995 approval was given to invite tenders for the construction of 2 new Auxiliary Oilers to replace the ageing OL Class tankers. The full Invitation to Tender was issued the following year and the £200 million contracts were placed in March 1997. The ships were built in 12 modular sections which were then joined together. In the case of WAVE KNIGHT (2), the cargo tankage was built at Harland and Wolff in Belfast, the 1000 tonne stern block was built at Cammell Laird in Newcastle and transported by sea around to Barrow while the funnel came from Appledore Shipbuilders in North Devon. WAVE RULER (2) was constructed almost entirely at Govan but with some of the steel work coming from Barrow.
Items of historic interest involving this ship: -
September 1995 approval given to invite tenders.
10 October 1995 draft Invitation to tender issued.
2 February 1996 the Invitation to Tender was announced.
26 June 1996 full Invitation to Tender issued.
12 March 1997 ordered.
22 May 1998 laid down in a joint ceremony performed by Admiral of the Fleet Sir Henry Leach which also included the keel-laying of the amphibious assault ship HMS ALBION
October 1999 original launch date.
September 2000 original completion date to replace RFA OLWEN (2)
28 September 2000 named WAVE KNIGHT (2) by Lady Guthrie, wife of General Sir Charles Guthrie, Chief of the Defence Staff. Launching was delayed by a day due to high winds.
29 September 2000 launched by BAe Systems Marine at the Vickers Shipbuilding and Engineering Limited complex at Barrow-in-Furness as Yard Number 1119 named WAVE KNIGHT (2). She became the largest ship to be launched at Barrow since the carrier HMS INVINCIBLE in 1977.
7 September 2001 arrived Inchgreen Dry Dock at Greenock for pre-trials work to be carried out.
19 January 2002 suffered minor damage following loss of hydraulic pressure during ballast transfer operations while in the Inchgreen Dry Dock at Greenock preparing for Contractor’s Sea Trials.
26 January 2002 suffered minor damage when she touched the dock wall during gales.
February 2002 original in-service date
7 April 2002 to 9 April 2002 berthed at El Ferrol, Spain
17 June 2002 sailed Greenock on Contractors’ Sea Trials.
29 August 2002 entered Inchgreen Dry Dock at Greenock on completion of Sea Trials.
15 October 2002 completed.
16 October 2002 handed over on the Clyde.
30 October 2002 sailed from Loch Striven jetty.
4 November 2002 first arrival at Devonport.
9 May 2003 together with HMS Cumberland and British Customs and Spanish Aduana Officers was involved in the stopping of a former German torpedo boat - renamed 'Cork' and arresting 8 South American citizens together with the seizing 3.6 of tonnes of cocaine worth an estimated £152 million
24 June 2003 involved in a Towing Exercise in the English Channel with HMS Invincible
23 July 2003 represented the RFA at the presentation by the Queen of New Colours to the RN aboard the LPD HMS OCEAN in Plymouth Sound along with RFA's ARGUS and SIR BEDIVERE
25 August 2003 assumed APT (N) duties
September 2003 seized 116lbs marijuana in the Caribbean on the British-flagged yacht ANNA KATERINA worth an estimated £152,000
November 2003 involved with HMS Manchester in the recovery of 42 bales of cocaine while on anti drugs patrol in the Caribbean worth an estimated £42 million.
27 January 2004 seized 650 kgs of cocaine in the Caribbean worth an estimated £26 million while operating with the US Coastguard cutter TAMPA
February 2004 Captain Kevin Rimmel RFA in command
6 June 2004 in ceremonial departure from Portsmouth for the 60th Anniversary of D-Day celebrations
March 2005 seized an assessed 1.5 tonnes of cocaine in the Caribbean worth an estimated £40 million - the drugs were jettisoned by the smugglers.
12 May 2005 with HMS Liverpool
2 November 2007 humanitarian assistance : was tasked at short notice to provide aviation support in order to distribute humanitarian aid to the people of the Dominican Republic in the wake of Hurricane Noel
21 January 2008 sailed Portsmouth as part of the Orion 08 Deployment tio the Middle East led by the carrier HMS ILLUSTRIOUS - along with RFA’s BAYLEAF (3) and FORT AUSTIN
December 2008 Involved with HMS Cumberland in the arrest of suspected 8 Somali pirates and after their arrest conveyed them to Police in Mombassa to be tried by the Kenyan courts.
18 April 2009 while supporting the Combined Maritime Forces in the Gulf of Aden she received a distress call from the merchant HANDY TANKERS MAGIC which was under attack by pirates. She followed the pirate skiff to it‘s Mother Ship and forced it to stop. A Dutch warship arrived on the scene and boarded the Mother Ship which resulted in 13 fishermen being freed. Just 2 hours later she received another distress call from FRONT ARDENNES and sped to the scene and fired warning shots and the pirates aborted their attack and sped off.
12 June 2009 Captain (E) E M Quigley RFA appointed as Chief Engineer Officer
26 November 2009 berthed at Portland
January 2010 with RFA's Argus, Lyme Bay, Wave Ruler together with RN Units have been honoured by the International Maritime Organisation (IMO) for their work to repress piracy off the coast of Somalia and in the Gulf of Aden at the 26th session of the IMO
29 January 2010 at Portland Harbour
4 February 2010 with RFA Wave Ruler on exercise off Plymouth
24 February 2010 with RFA Mounts Bay and RN units involved in a NATO Exercise 'Cold Response off Norway
21 May 2010 entered Portsmouth Dockyard with the assistance of tugs Reliable, Bustler and Powerful
23 May 2010 presented with the RFA Operational Efficiency Award in Portsmouth by Commodore William Walworth OBE RFA
19 June 2010 anchored off Gurnsey
21 June 2010 reported in the RFA Cascade Brief that the Worshipful Company of Fuellers annual award for outstanding recognition has been awarded to Chief Officer (E) Roger Stevens RFA at the Mansion House, Walbrook on 20 April 2010
26 August 2010 berthed at Canada Dock, Liverpool
11 September 2010 moored at Langton Dock, Liverpool
27 October 2010 in refit at Merseyside
21 November 2010 sailed from Portland
14 January 2012 in the North Arabian Sea off Oman responding to a Mayday call and in cooperation with two SH60 Seahawk helicopters from the USS John C Stennis rescued ten people from a 70 foot pleasure craft Princess Melisa which was holed, taking in water and in danger of sinking in rough seas. Those rescued were transfered to an Omani Coast Guard vessel
19 January 2012 escorted MV Oriana towards Muscat at 23 knots
25 January 2013 sailed Bermuda
28 January 2013 berthed at Mayport, Florida
18 February 2013 sailed Mayport, Florida
21 February 2013 visited Grand Cayman
27 February 2013 visited Grand Turk for a four day visit
5 March 2013 berthed at Road Town, British Virgin Islands
7 March 2013 a football match played at BVI resulted in the ships team loosing 4 - 5 to a local side
11 March 2013 anchored at Road Bay, Anguilla for three days
14 March 2013 sailed Anguilla
17 March 2013 berthed alongside at St. Johns, Antigua
24 March 2013 anchored off Montserrat for three day visit
29 March 2013 berthed at Barbados for five day visit
6 May 2013 berthed at Jacksonville, Florida
In the Spring of 2001 it emerged that BAe Systems had placed an unsolicited bid with the MoD to build a further 2 WAVE CLASS tankers at significant cost savings in comparison with the first 2 but the MoD declined to accept the bid