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Clan-tastic voyage
NEW team, new ship.
out much of Sutherland’s stern, fitted sockets to power TVs, laptops, iPods 1740s before being broken up.
Or should we say ‘new clan’?
the Merlin helicopter handling system, and the like. Just to confuse matters, as Sutherland I
Louisbourg .................1758
This is HMS Sutherland – The Fighting
installed Sonar 2087, fitted a ‘spoiler’ Electricians have also fitted more assumed hospital ship duties, Sutherland Quebec .......................1759
Clan – heading to sea for the first time in
(or transom flap) to improve the ship’s computers around the ship with email II was launched at Rotherhithe. Martinique ..................1762
over year after a £20m overhaul on the
speed, and applied special non-stick and internet access – something the She too was a fourth-rate and she Havana .......................1762
Forth which makes her Britain’s most
paint to the hull which will reduce friction ship’s company could only have dreamed would earn all four of the ship’s battle
Battle Honours
potent frigate.
as she powers through the water. of when Sutherland was launched by honours over a four-year spell on the
Class: Type 23 frigate
With quite a few souped-up Type
Gone is the bulbous 4.5in main gun. Lady Christina Walmsley at the Yarrow opposite side of the Atlantic.
Pennant number: F81
23s already out there (Westminster and
In its place sits the more angular (and yard on the Clyde back in March 1996. The frigate played important roles in
Somerset to name but two), that is a
improved) ‘Kryten’ which has a longer In doing so, she launched the first the capture of the French fortress of
Builder: Yarrow, Glasgow
pretty bold claim.
range (and is stealthier). warship to bear the name Sutherland in Louisbourg (in Nova Scotia), followed by
Laid down: October 14
But then they don’t have the latest
And talking of guns, there’s a new more than two centuries. the capture of Quebec (Wolfe wrote his
version of Seawolf missile system.
automatic 30mm gun system The Sutherland line began on final letter aboard Sutherland), before
Launched: March 9 1996
No-one does, apart from Sutherland.
installed to cope with the emerging the second day of 1716 when being sent to the Caribbean, where
Commissioned: July 4
The Fighting Clan was the first vessel in
threat from terrorists in small fast fourth-rate HMS Reserve was yet more victories ensued: Dominica,
the Type 23/22 fleets to receive SWMLU
craft. renamed. She ended her Martinique and finally Havana. Displacement: 4,200 tons
(SeaWolf Medium-Life Upgrade) – an
For the ship’s company career as a hospital ship After an eventful 29-year career, she Length: 133 metres (436ft)
improved tracker and computer system
there’s improved air in the Mediterranean in was sold in the summer of 1770. Beam: 16.1 metres (53ft)
which effectively doubles the range that
conditioning (vital given the the early As befits the name, the ship is, of Draught: 7.3 metres (24ft)
a ship can track an incoming missile.
23s are becoming the course, affiliated with the namesake
Speed: 28 knots
The refit by Babcock in Rosyth
ship of choice in the Scottish county, its county town of
Complement: 181
hasn’t all been about Seawolf, however.
northern Gulf) and Dornoch (and its golf course), as well
Propulsion: 2 x Rolls-
Engineers and shipwrights stripped
more plugs and as RAF Kinloss, The Highlanders (4th
Royce Spey gas turbines
Battalion, Royal Regiment of Scotland).
generating 31,100hp; es
4 x Paxman diesels
generating 8,100hp
Armament: 8 x Harpoon
anti-surface missiles;
Stingray torpedoes; 32 x
Seawolf anti-air missiles;
1 x Mod 1 4.5 inch gun;
2 x 30mm close-range
guns; Seagnat and decoy
Helicopter: 1 x Merlin or
Facts and figur
Cdr Francis Goodhart, DSO, AM
THE sight of the stern of HMS Thetis forlornly Goodhart, (pictured below, courtesy of the RN
sticking out of the Irish Sea is one of the most Submarine Museum) eager to see how these new
tragic in the history of the Silent Service. boats performed.
Thetis foundered in barely 150ft of water, her Goodhart was a man of action – and his record
crew so near, yet so far from salvation. showed it: In command of HMS E8 he had blown
JJanuaranuary 1969y 1969
A generation before, their predecessors found up – a torpedo detonated a magazine – the aged
themselves entombed in an ‘iron coffin’ in home cruiser SMS Prinz Adalbert in the Baltic.
THINGS that should float, things
waters – and salvation was even closer at hand. Now, with the air supply in K13 sufficient
that can float and things that do
So far HMS K13 had pretty much lived up for no more than eight hours and no means of
so only in desperation feature
to Admiralty expectations – unlike her troubled communicating with the outside world, Goodhart
in our lookback this month,
sisters, although the boats had still to earn their volunteered to flood the conning tower and swim
beginning with the launch of
unfortunate moniker ‘the calamitous Ks’. to the surface.
HMS Achilles, number 23 (count
But then in the opening month of 1917, K13 He fixed a small tin cylinder to his belt
’em) of the Leander-class
had yet to leave confined waters. She had containing instructions for any rescuers. “If I
frigates, which hurried down
conducted impressive speed trials on the Clyde don’t get up, the tin cylinder will,” he assured
the slipway at Yarrow’s yard on
(23½ kts), dived – and re-emerged – safely, and K13’s captain Lt Cdr Godfrey Herbert.
the Clyde (pictured right). Lady
was now on the verge of being formally handed Neither cylinder nor Goodhart ever reached
Janvrin, the wife of Flag Officer
over to the Royal Navy by her builders, Fairfield’s the surface. As the conning tower hatch was
Naval Air Command Vice Admiral
of Govan (today BVT Govan). opened and Goodhart tried to make his exit,
Sir Hugh Janvrin, performed the
Lt Cdr Godfrey Herbert was all set to officially the air pressure flung him against the inner hull,
honours, remarking: “Doesn’t
accept his boat from Fairfield’s. Before he did, killing him.
she look big.”
there would be one final dive. It would be K13’s The pressure which killed Francis Goodhart
last. saved K13, however. It carried Godfrey Herbert,
JJanuaranuary 1979y 1979
The Ks were revolutionary. The idea – fast who had helped to flood the tower, to the
submarines able to keep up with the surface surface – involuntarily, admittedly,
fleet – was not matched by technology, and In all, 48 men survived the tragedy – the last
THE Sea King is a sturdy
would not be for another half century. one was hauled out of the submarine 57 hours
aircraft (‘robust’ would be the
To keep pace with the cruisers and after she sank.
current buzzword), designed
dreadnoughts, the Ks would be driven by steam Francis Goodhart was posthumously awarded
to float should it ditch. And it
on the surface. the Albert Medal. He
does, as fliers from 820 NAS
Which was fine. With their top speed, the hadhad displayed displayed
discovered when they suffered
boats could indeed hold their own with the ““extrextreme andeme and
a hitch during exercises in the
battlefleet. hhererooic daring” – ic daring” –
Gulf of Mexico. Unable to take
But steam could not power them underwater, ffully expectingully expecting
off again on one engine, the
only slow electric motors with a limited life tto die in hiso die in his
aircrew decided to steer the
could. ddesperateesperate
helicopter back to safety. Using
Steam and electric were not good bedfellows. mimission to raise ssion to raise
the rotor disc they propelled the
It took upwards of five minutes to retract the tthe alarm.he alarm.
nine-ton Sea King at speeds of
steam funnels and close all the various valves K1K13 was3 was
between five and ten knots back
and vents before the Ks could dive. As veteran resuesurrrrected –ected –
to mother ship HMS Blake. Four
deeps warned, there were simply “too many y sasalvaged, to uselvaged, to use
hours after ditching, the downed
damned holes”. ththe nautical term. e nautical term.
bird was hoisted safely aboard
There were. And when K13 disappeared ThThe name was not. e name was not.
the helicopter cruiser.
beneath Gareloch on the afternoon of January y She reejoined the joined the
29 1917 on her third and final acceptance dive, ffleet as K22leet as K22
JJanuaranuary 1989y 1989
not all of them were fully sealed. aand wasnd was
The waters of the loch poured into the boiler r ffinallyinally
room, then the aft torpedo compartment. K13 scrappscrappeded
EIGHTEEN refugees from
came to rest on the bed of the loch, no more iin 1926.n 1926.
Vietnam owed their lives to
than 50ft down.
the Outback 88 deployment
By the time she settled on the seabed, 29 men
– Ark Royal, Edinburgh and
had died inside the flooded compartments; two
RFA Olwen. One of Ark’s Sea
more evidently tried to swim to safety, but never r
Kings spied an open boat in
made it.
the South China Sea crammed
And of those 31 victims, not all were
with people. Edinburgh moved
in to investigate and found 18
One in three men aboard HMS K13 was
people, including a baby and
not ship’s company. There were engineers
three children, who had fled
and officials from her builder, a Clyde pilot,
Vietnam a month before and
Admiralty officials.
who had run out of food after
And there was the Commanding Officer of
two weeks. Three of the refugees
HMS K14, still being built, one Cdr Francis
had already died.
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