RFA Wave Laird

RFA Wave Laird


RFA Wave Laird

RFA Wave Laird

 

Previous name:                       Empire Dunbar
Subsequent name:

Official Number:                      180967

Class:                                     WAVE CLASS  Freighting  Oiler (unmodified)

Pennant No:                           X129 / A119

Laid down:
Builder:                                  Laings, Deptford Yard
Launched:                             3 April 1946
Into Service:                          30 September 1946
Out of service:
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 WAVEnomenclature. 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

 

3 April 1946 launched by Sir James Laing & Sons Ltd, Deptford Yard, Sunderland as Yard Nr 767 named  EMPIRE DUNBARfor the MoWT

26 June 1946 Mr David C Leathley RFA appointed as Chief Engineer Officer

30 September 1946 completed - acquired by the Admiralty and renamed WAVE LAIRD

October 1946 while on passage from Sunderland to the River Tyne suffered steering gear problems and was towed into port

19 October 1946 passed the Lloyds signal station on the Lizard sailing west

December 1946 at Portland  while due to sail for Trinidad delayed due to boiler problems

23 February 1947 sailed Trinidad for LEFO

17 March 1947 reported as adrift with engines out of action 20 miles off Tasker Rock, County Wexford, Ireland in gale force winds - requested assistance - boiler trouble. Suffered such heavy weather damage that repairs were essential before cargo from Trinidad could be discharged at the Admiralty fuel depot at Old Kilpatrick, River Clyde.

19 May 1947 Captain H W Flint RFA appointed as Master

17 June 1947 passed the Lloyds signal station on the Lizard sailing east 

12 August 1947 berthed at Trinidad from Falmouth 

9 September 1947 berthed at Trinidad from Devonport

11 September 1947 sailed Trinidad for a UK port

3 February 1948 berthed at Avonmouth

4 February 1948 Mr R B Burgh RFA appointed as Chief Engineer Officer

25 March 1948 sailed Trinidad for LEFO

6 April 1948 berthed at Devonport from Trinidad

27 May 1948 sailed Trinidad for LEFO

18 March 1949 sailed Port Said for LEFO

28 March 1949 Captain Rowland K Hill RFA appointed as Master

30 July 1949 while on passage from Falmouth to Abadan passed Gibraltar this day

4 August 1949 while on passage from Falmouth arrived at Port Said this day

15 August 1949 berthed at Abadan from Falmouth

10 November 1949 Deckhand Frederick William Hallett discharged dead. He is buried in Kalkara Royal Naval Cemetery, Malta. Deckhand Hallett had been killed as a result of injuries received when the ship was hit by heavy seas on a voyage from Abadan to Malta. The funeral was attended by the Captain, Officers and crew from the ship and also from RFA ROWANOL and RFA NASPRITE together with the Secretary of the Malta branch of the National Union of Seaman.

 

Deckhand Frederick William Hallett

Image courtesy British War Graves with thanks

 

30 December 1949 Mr I M Macfarlane RFA appointed as Chief Engineer Officer

23 May 1950 Donkeyman Frederick Richard Dawe discharged dead at 44.53N 8.03W - natural causes

24 June 1950 sailed Suez for Abadan from Devonport

25 June 1950 to 27 July 1953 saw service during the Korean War along with 18 other RFA’s and was awarded the Korea 1950-51 Battle Honour

2 July 1950 arrived Abadan from Devonport

22 September 1950 arrived Port Sail while on passage to Abadan

5 October 1950 sailed Suez while on passage from Falmouth to Abadan

14 October 1950 arrived Abadan from Falmouth

January 1951 RAS'ed HMS THESEUS off Korea

19 May 1951 Mr George McBain RFA appointed as Chief Engineer Officer

19 July 1951 involved in a collision with Royal Inter Ocean liner Boissevain in the Singapore Strait

20 July 1951 at anchor in the outer roads at Singapore

3 August 1951 Captain J Bottomley RFA appointed as Master

10 August 1951 in the outer roads at Singapore

13 August 1951 alongside at Singapore

29 November 1951 Mr J S Aitken RFA appointed as Chief Engineer Officer

2 December 1952 Captain G O W Evans DSC RFA appointed as Master

January 1954 supported Naval vessels with the Royal Yacht Gothic on a State visit to Australia by HM the Queen.

21 November 1954 Captain Geoffrey B A Livesey RFA appointed as Master

 

G_B_A_Livesey

Captain Geoffrey B A Livesey RFA
as a Cadet with P&O in about 1920

 

7 May 1956 Captain J W Cunningham RFA appointed as Master

31 October 1956 Deployed for Operation Musketeer - the Suez Crisis - along with 34 other RFA’s

11 April 1957 during Exercise Tradewind RASed with HMAS ANZAC

14 April 1957 during Exercise Tradewind RASed with HMAS ANZAC

24 April 1957 sailed Singapore with RN, RNZN, French and RAN units to take part in Exercise Astra

30 April 1957 during Exercise Astra RASed with HMAS ANZAC

3 May 1957 in the vicinity of Sattahib RASed with HMAS's MELBOURNE, ANZAC and TOBRUK prior to steaming to Hong Kong

23 May 1957 during Exercise Sealink RASed with HMAS's ANZAC and TOBRUK

4 September 1957 at Trinidad Sailor Muay Chew Tong discharged dead - accidental

12 November 1957 Mr J Ross RFA appointed as Chief Engineer Officer

18 October 1958 Captain L J Mack DSO RFA appointed as Master

5 January 1959 sailed Simonstown, South Africa to Aden arriving 18 January 1959

7 April 1959 Captain George Baker RFA appointed as Master

2 May 1959 berthed at Malta

26 August 1959 sailed Malta to Bahrain

17 December 1959 Mr G Thompson RFA appointed as Chief Engineer Officer

31 December 1959 alongside at Simontown, South Africa

31 January 1960 at sea at 16.40W 55.10E Seaman Ting Ah Hong discharged dead through apparent natural causes. Buried at Sea

21 March 1960 arrived at Malta from the Persian Gulf

24 May 1960 arrived at Grand Harbour, Malta from Tobruk

20 August 1960 at Devonport Sailor Yee Hoo Ling discharged dead from self inflicted strangulation

16 September 1960 deployed in support of RN units off Iceland during 1st Cod War until 29 September 1960

1961 laid up in reserve at Devonport

October 1969 on disposal list Devonport

1 November 1969 offered for sale 'as lying' at Devonport Dockyard in the Times of this day

26 January 1970 left Devonport under tow to Gibraltar.

25 February 1970 left Gibraltar under tow to the ship breakers

March 1970 arrived Hierros Ardes, Gandia, Spain for breaking up

 

 

Notes:

 

She acted as a Support Ship to HMS PROTECTORand ran supplies to the Falkland Islands.

Additional information

Copyright © 2008 – 2014 Christopher J White