HMCS Royal Mount (K677)

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Royalmount.jpg
HMCS Royal Mount
Career (Canada)
Name: HMCS Royal Mount
Namesake: Mount Royal, Quebec
Operator: Royal Canadian Navy
Ordered: 1 February 1943
Builder: Canadian Vickers Ltd., Montreal
Yard number: 179
Laid down: 7 January 1944
Launched: 15 April 1944
Commissioned: 25 August 1944
Decommissioned: 17 November 1945
Identification: pennant number:K 677
Honours and
awards:
Atlantic, 1944–45.[1]
Fate: sold for scrapping 1946.
General characteristics
Class & type: River-class frigate
Displacement: 1,445 long tons (1,468 t; 1,618 short tons)
2,110 long tons (2,140 t; 2,360 short tons) (deep load)
Length: 283 ft (86.26 m) p/p
301.25 ft (91.82 m)o/a
Beam: 36.5 ft (11.13 m)
Draught: 9 ft (2.74 m); 13 ft (3.96 m) (deep load)
Propulsion: 2 x Admiralty 3-drum boilers, 2 shafts, reciprocating vertical triple expansion, 5,500 ihp (4,100 kW)
Speed: 20 knots (37.0 km/h)
20.5 knots (38.0 km/h) (turbine ships)
Range: 646 long tons (656 t; 724 short tons) oil fuel; 7,500 nautical miles (13,890 km) at 15 knots (27.8 km/h)
Complement: 157
Armament:
  • 2 x QF 4 in (102 mm) /45 Mk. XVI on twin mount HA/LA Mk.XIX
  • 1 x QF 12 pdr (3 in / 76 mm) 12 cwt /50 Mk. V on mounting HA/LA Mk.IX (not all ships)
  • 8 x 20 mm QF Oerlikon A/A on twin mounts Mk.V
  • 1 x Hedgehog 24 spigot A/S projector
  • up to 150 depth charges

HMCS Royal Mount was a River-class frigate that served with the Royal Canadian Navy during the Second World War. She was used primarily as an ocean convoy escort in the Battle of the Atlantic. She was named for Mount Royal, Quebec, however due to possible confusion with HMCS Montreal, her name was switched around.[2]

Royal Mount was ordered on 1 February 1943 as part of the 1943–1944 River-class building program.[2][3] She was laid down on 7 January 1944 as Alvington by Canadian Vickers Ltd. at Montreal and launched 15 April 1944.[4] Her name was changed and she was commissioned as Royal Mount on 25 August 1944 at Montreal.[2]

Background[edit]

Main article: River-class frigate

The River-class frigate was designed by William Reed of Smith's Dock Company of South Bank-on-Tees. Originally called a "twin-screw corvette", its purpose was to improve on the convoy escort classes in service with the Royal Navy at the time, including the Flower-class corvette. The first orders were placed by the Royal Navy in 1940 and the vessels were named for rivers in the United Kingdom, giving name to the class. In Canada they were named for towns and cities though they kept the same designation.[5] The name "frigate" was suggested by Vice-Admiral Percy Nelles of the Royal Canadian Navy and was adopted later that year.[6]

Improvements over the corvette design included improved accommodation which was markedly better. The twin engines gave only three more knots of speed but extended the range of the ship to nearly double that of a corvette at 7,200 nautical miles (13,300 km) at 12 knots.[6] Among other lessons applied to the design was an armament package better designed to combat U-boats including a twin 4-inch mount forward and 12-pounder aft.[5] 15 Canadian frigates were initially fitted with a single 4-inch gun forward but with the exception of the HMCS Valleyfield, they were all eventually upgraded to the double mount.[6] For underwater targets, the River-class frigate was equipped with a Hedgehog anti-submarine mortar and depth charge rails aft and four side-mounted throwers.[5]

River-class frigates were the first Royal Canadian Navy warships to carry the 147B Sword horizontal fan echo sonar transmitter in addition to the irregular ASDIC. This allowed the ship to maintain contact with targets even while firing unless a target was struck. Improved radar and direction-finding equipment improved the RCN's ability to find and track enemy submarines over the previous classes.[5]

Canada originally ordered the construction of 33 frigates in October 1941.[5][6] The design was too big for the shipyards on the Great Lakes so all the frigates built in Canada were built in dockyards along the west coast or along the St. Lawrence River.[6] In all Canada ordered the construction of 60 frigates including ten for the Royal Navy that transferred two to the United States Navy.[5]

War service[edit]

Royal Mount sailed for Halifax and worked up at Bermuda in September 1944. Upon her return she was assigned to the Mid-Ocean Escort Force (MOEF) escort group C-1 as a trans-Atlantic convoy escort, joining up with the group in November. She remained with the group until May 1945, when she returned to Canada for the final time. Royal Mount underwent a refit from May 26 to 5 October 1945 at Sydney, Nova Scotia. She was decommissioned 17 November 1945 and placed in reserve at Bedford Basin. She remained there until her purchase in 1947 for scrap.[2] The ship's bell lies in the entrance to the town hall of Mount Royal. The ship was commemorated during the Canadian Naval Centennial[7]

References[edit]

Notes
  1. ^ "Battle Honours". Britain's Navy. Retrieved 27 March 2014. 
  2. ^ a b c d Macpherson, Ken; Burgess, John (1981). The ships of Canada's naval forces 1910–1981 : a complete pictorial history of Canadian warships. Toronto: Collins. ISBN 0-00216-856-1. 
  3. ^ "HMCS Royal Mount (K 677)". uboat.net. Retrieved 28 March 2014. 
  4. ^ Lenton, H.T.; Colledge, J.J. (1968). British and Dominion Warships of World War II. New York: Doubleday and Company Inc. p. 228. 
  5. ^ a b c d e f "Fact Sheet No. 21 – Canadian River Class Frigates". Retrieved 3 April 2014. 
  6. ^ a b c d e Macpherson, Ken (1989). Frigates of the Royal Canadian Navy 1943–1974. Lewiston, New York: Vanwell Publishing. pp. 6–7, 15. ISBN 0920277225. 
  7. ^ "Mount Royal to receive from the Canadian Navy a memento of HMCS Royalmount". Town of Mount Royal. 9 March 2010. Retrieved 28 March 2014. 
References
  • Macpherson, Ken; Burgess, John. The ships of Canada's naval forces 1910–1981 : a complete pictorial history of Canadian warships. Collins: Toronto, 1981. ISBN 0-00216-856-1