HMS Skate (1917)

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HMS Skate in 1942
Skate at Liverpool in 1942
United Kingdom
Name: HMS Skate
Ordered: 8 December 1915
Builder: John Brown & Company, Clydebank
Laid down: 12 January 1916
Launched: 11 January 1917
Commissioned: 19 February 1917
Fate: Sold for scrapping 1947
General characteristics
Class and type: R-class destroyer
  • 900 long tons (910 t) standard
  • 1,220 long tons (1,240 t) full
  • 265 ft (81 m) p/p
  • 276 ft (84 m) o/a
Beam: 26 ft 9 in (8.15 m)
  • 8 ft 6 in (2.59 m)
  • 10 ft 9 in (3.28 m) full load
  • 36 knots (41 mph; 67 km/h)
  • 32.5 kn (37.4 mph; 60.2 km/h) full
  • 3,440 nmi (6,370 km) at 15 kn (17 mph; 28 km/h)
  • 1,860 nmi (3,440 km) at 20 kn (23 mph; 37 km/h)
Complement: 90

HMS Skate was an R-class destroyer of the Royal Navy that was laid down and completed during the First World War. She was built at John Brown Shipyard at Clydebank in Scotland and launched on 11 January 1917.[1]


Skate was the sole survivor of her class by 1939, and saw extensive service during the Second World War as a convoy escort. This gave her the honour of being the oldest destroyer to see service with the Royal Navy in the latter conflict.[2]

During the First World War, Skate was torpedoed and damaged in the North Sea off the Maas Lightship by the Imperial German Navy submarine SM UC-69 with the loss of a crew member on 12 March 1917.[3] She was converted into a minelayer while undergoing repairs, which is likely why she remained active on the Navy List in 1939. Initially she served as an influence minesweeper to combat the threat of magnetic mines, but such was the need for escorts that she was rearmed in 1941 to take part in the Battle of the Atlantic. She was on North Atlantic duties until 1942 and was part of the escort for the Normandy landings in June 1944.[3]

After the Second World War she was transferred to the Torpedo school at HMS Vernon in 1945, before being sold in 1947 and broken up in July at Newport in Wales.[1]


  1. ^ a b "HMS Skate, Destroyer". Naval History. Retrieved 22 September 2016. 
  2. ^ "HMS Skate". Imperial War Museum. Retrieved 22 September 2016. 
  3. ^ a b "HMS Skate of the Royal Navy". U-Boat. Retrieved 22 September 2016.