HMS St. James (D65)

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For other ships of the same name, see HMS St James.
HMS St James.jpg
Career (UK) RN Ensign
Name: HMS St. James
Ordered: 12 August 1942
Builder: Fairfield Shipbuilding and Engineering Company
Laid down: 20 May 1943
Launched: 7 June 1945
Commissioned: 12 July 1946
Identification: Pennant number: R65 (later D65)
Fate: Scrapped in 1961
General characteristics
Class and type: Battle-class destroyer
Displacement: 2,315 tons standard
3,290 tons full load
Length: 379 ft (116 m)
Beam: 40 ft (12.2 m)
Draught: 15.3 ft (4.7 m)
Propulsion: 2 steam turbines, 2 shafts, 2 boilers, 50,000 shp (37 MW)
Speed: 35.75 knots (66 km/h)
Range: 4,400 nautical miles (8,100 km) at 12 knots (22 km/h)
Complement: 308
Armament: 2 × dual 4.5-inch (114 mm) gun
14 × Bofors 40 mm gun
8 × 21-inch (533 mm) torpedo tubes
1 × Squid mortar
Service record
Part of: 5th Destroyer Flotilla

HMS St. James was a Battle-class destroyer of the Royal Navy. She was named in honour of the Battle of St. James Day which took place in 1666.

St. James was built by Fairfields at Govan. She was launched on 7 June 1945 and commissioned on 12 July 1946.

Operational Service[edit]

In 1946, St. James joined the 5th Destroyer Flotilla, part of the Home Fleet. On 25 August 1946, while undergoing calibration trials off the Isle of Portland, she accidentally hit and sank the tug Buccaneer with a 4.5-inch shell, while aiming at the target Buccaneer was towing. St. James '​s captain, Commander J. Lee Barber, went alongside and took off Buccaneer '​s crew without loss, but St. James suffered a damaged propeller when the tug capsized. An inquiry was held aboard the cruiser HMS Superb on 28 August, at which it was decided that no further action would be taken.[1]

In 1950, St. James deployed on a Home Fleet Spring Cruise, which saw her, as well as many other vessels, including the carrier Victorious and two other carriers, as well as the immense battleship Vanguard, visit the Mediterranean, which included stops at Italy. The group performed the usual naval exercises in the region, as well as undertaking 'fly-the-flag' visits to a number of ports.

In 1953, St. James was placed in reserve along with a number of her sister-ships. However she did take part in the Fleet Review to celebrate the Coronation of Queen Elizabeth II.[2]

In 1957, St. James finally began a refit to modernise the destroyer, but just the following year, her refit was cancelled, and she was subsequently placed on the disposal list. In 1961, at Newport, St. James was broken up.

Commanding officers[edit]

From To Captain
1947 1948 Commander J Lee-Barber DSO
1953 1953 Commander H A Stewart-Menteth DSC RN

References[edit]

  1. ^ Boniface. Battle Class Destroyers. pp. 91–2. 
  2. ^ Souvenir Programme, Coronation Review of the Fleet, Spithead, 15th June 1953, HMSO, Gale and Polden

Publications[edit]