HMS Diadem (1896)

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For other ships of the same name, see HMS Diadem.
HMS Diadem.jpg
HMS Diadem
Career (United Kingdom)
Name: Diadem
Operator: Royal Navy
Builder: Fairfield Shipbuilding & Engineering Co Ltd, Govan
Launched: 21 October 1896
Fate: Sold 9 May 1921
General characteristics
Class & type: Diadem-class cruiser
Displacement: 11,000 tons
Length: 435 ft (133 m) (462 ft 6 in (140.97 m) o/a)
Beam: 69 ft (21 m)
Draught: 25 ft 6 in (7.77 m)
Propulsion: 2 shaft triple expansion engines
16.500 - 18,000 hp
Speed: 20 - 20.5 knots
Complement: 760
Armament: 16 x single QF 6-inch (152.4 mm) guns

14 x single QF 12 pounder guns
3 x single QF 3 pounder guns

2 x 18 in torpedo tubes
Armour: 6 inch casemates
4.5-2 inch decks

HMS Diadem was the lead ship of the Diadem-class of protected cruiser in the Royal Navy.

Service history[edit]

Diadem was built by Fairfield Shipbuilding & Engineering Co Ltd at Govan and launched on 21 October 1896.

She served in the Easter Division of the Channel Squadron under the command of Captain H. S. F. Niblett, and was briefly docked at Chatham in January 1900 to make good defects.[1]

In March 1901 Diadem was one of two cruisers to escort HMS Ophir, commissioned as royal yacht for the world tour of the Duke and Duchess of Cornwall and York (later King George and Queen Mary), from Spithead to Gibraltar,[2] and in September the same year she again escorted the royal yacht from St Vincent to Halifax, Nova Scotia. In January 1902 it was announced that she would be put out of commission due to "defects which will take some time to remedy".[3] She was paid off at Chatham on 11 February 1902, and in May transported to Fairfield Shipbuilding and Engineering Company in Glasgow for repairs to her hull and machinery.[4]

The ship was reactivated and sent to China Station where Diadem became the flagship of the vice-admiral until 1907. The vessel then returned home and was paid off in April 1907. She was then assigned to the Home Fleet based at Portsmouth from 1907-1912 before transferring to the Third Fleet. The ship was refitted in 1909.[5]

Diadem served in the First World War with her sisters. In 1914 the vessel was used as a stokers' training ship, and was placed in reserve in October 1915. She was returned to being a stokers' training ship in January 1918, and survived the war to be sold to Ward of Morecambe for breaking up on 9 May 1921.

Commanding officers[edit]

  • Captain H. S. F. Niblett - in 1900
  • Captain H. Leah - in 1901-02[6]


  1. ^ "Naval & Military intelligence" The Times (London). Tuesday, 23 January 1900. (36046), p. 12.
  2. ^ "The Duke of Cornwall´s visit to the colonies" The Times (London). Thursday, 14 March 1901. (36402), p. 6.
  3. ^ "Naval & Military intelligence" The Times (London). Saturday, 25 January 1902. (36674), p. 13.
  4. ^ "Naval & Military intelligence" The Times (London). Tuesday, 29 April 1902. (36754), p. 7.
  5. ^ Conway '​s, p.11
  6. ^ "Naval and Military intelligence" The Times (London). Thursday, 28 February 1901. (36390), p. 6.


External links[edit]