HMS Warwick (D25)
|Builder:||Hawthorn Leslie & Company, Hebburn|
|Laid down:||10 March 1917|
|Launched:||28 December 1917|
|Commissioned:||18 March 1918|
|Fate:||Sunk by U-413, 1944|
|Class and type:||Admiralty W class|
|Beam:||29 ft 6 in (9.0 m)|
|Propulsion:||3 Yarrow type Water-tube boilers, Brown-Curtis steam turbines, 2 shafts, 27,000 shp|
|Speed:||34 knots (63 km/h)|
HMS Warwick was built during the First World War as part of the Royal Navy’s War Emergency Programme. She was part of the Admiralty W Class of 21 ships, representing the last word in destroyer design at the time. Warwick was built by Hawthorn Leslie & Company, Hebburn, being laid down 10 March 1917. She launched on 28 December 1917, and completed 18 March 1918.
First World War
Warwick commissioned in March 1918 and saw action in the last months of World War I. She took part in the raid on Zeebrugge in April, the attempt by the RN to blockade Germany's U-boat force stationed in Flanders. She also participated in the second raid on Ostend in May and was heavily damaged by a mine. Warwick was present at Scapa Flow in November 1918 when the Grand Fleet received the surrender of the German High Seas Fleet at the end of the war.
Following the end of World War I Warwick was stationed in the Mediterranean, serving there during the 20’s, before joining the RN Reserve in the 30’s. With the onset of war in 1939 Warwick was re-activated, re-commissioning in August, and joining the fleet at Plymouth in September.
Second World War
During World War II Warwick served as a convoy escort, being too out-dated for modern destroyer work. In February 1940 she was deployed to the Western Approaches Escort Force for Atlantic convoy defence. In this role she was engaged in all the duties performed by escort ships; protecting convoys, searching for and attacking U-boats which attacked ships in convoy, and rescuing survivors. In November 1940, with the formation of distinct escort groups, she joined 7 EG. In December she was mined and spent the next four months in dock for repairs.
In March 1941 she rejoined Western Approaches Command and saw out the year in the Atlantic. In January 1942, following the US entry into the war and the opening of the U-boat offensive off the US east coast (Operation Drumbeat), Warwick she transferred there, on loan to the USN. In June 1942 she was transferred to the West Indies serving with USN and RCN ships of the Caribbean Escort Force on anti-submarine patrol and convoy escort duty.
In December Warwick returned to Britain for conversion as a long range escort. This entailed, among other modifications, removal of one of her boilers to allow extra fuel capacity, thus sacrificing speed for endurance and range. She remained in dock at Dundee for the first half of 1943 while this was carried out.
In July she was on anti-submarine duties in the Bay of Biscay, supporting Operation Musketry, the RAF Coastal Command's Bay offensive In November she took part in Operation Alacrity, the establishment and supply of Allied air bases in the Azores which served to close the Mid-Atlantic gap.
In January 1944, having returned to Britain, Warwick was assigned to lead an escort group operating in the SouthWest Approaches, guarding against attacks by German E-boats. It was while engaged in this she was torpedoed and sunk on 20 February 1944.
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