HMS Bee (1915)

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Gunboat HMS Bee at Hankou (China) in 1937 (cropped).jpg
HMS Bee at Hankou in 1937
United Kingdom
Name: HMS Bee
Launched: 8 December 1915
Fate: Sold for scrap, 22 March 1939
General characteristics
Class and type: Insect-class gunboat
Displacement: 625 long tons (635 t)
Length: 237 ft 6 in (72.39 m)
Beam: 36 ft (11 m)
Draught: 4 ft (1.2 m)
Propulsion: 2 shaft VTE engines, 2 Yarrow type mixed firing boilers 2000 IHP
Speed: 14 knots (16 mph; 26 km/h)
Complement: 55
Armour: Improvised

HMS Bee was an Insect-class gunboat of the Royal Navy, launched on 8 December 1915. This class are also known as "Large China Gunboats".

Initially built for service on the River Danube, after World War I the Insects were transported to China and served on the Yangtze River. In 1920, Bee became the flagship of the Yangtze patrol.

On 12 December 1937, Bee, along with Ladybird, became involved in the Panay incident and came under fire from a Japanese artillery unit near Wuhu on the Yangtze. Ladybird took six shells and Bee dodged a shell as she came upon the scene.

Bee was paid off in 1938 when the gunboat Scorpion, the new flagship, arrived. She was sold in Shanghai for scrap on 22 March 1939 for £5,225.

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