HMS Howe (1860)

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HMS Impregnable c 1900.jpg
The former HMS Howe as the school ship HMS Impregnable in the 1890s.
Royal Navy EnsignUnited Kingdom
NameHMS Howe
Ordered3 April 1854
BuilderPembroke Dockyard
Laid down10 March 1856
Launched7 March 1860
  • Bulwark — 3 December 1885
  • Impregnable - 27 September 1886
  • Bulwark (again) - December 1919
FateSold to break up, 18 February 1921
General characteristics
Tons burthen4,236
Length260 feet
Beam60ft 10in
Armament121 (designed); actually never carried more than 12 guns of various weights of shot
Howe as school ship HMS Impregnable sometime between 1886 and 1919.

HMS Howe was built as a 121-gun screw first-rate ship of the line of the Royal Navy. She and her sister HMS Victoria were the first and only British three-decker ships of the line to be designed from the start for screw propulsion, but the Howe was never completed for sea service (and never served under her original name). During the 1860s, the first ironclad battleships gradually made unarmoured two- and three-deckers obsolete.

The highest number of guns she ever actually carried was 12, when she finally entered service as the training ship Bulwark in 1885.

Howe was named after Admiral Richard Howe. She was renamed a second time to Impregnable on 27 September 1886, but reverted to Bulwark in 1919 shortly before being sold for breaking up in 1921. The timbers were used to refurbish in the Tudor revivalist style the interior and fascia of the Liberty Store in London.[1]

Howe's figurehead in Hunt's Green, Buckinghamshire)


  1. ^ Liberty Family The Lee Village website, accessed 16 April 2013