HMS Wolfhound (L56)

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HMS Wolfhound (L56).jpg
History
RN EnsignUnited Kingdom
Name: HMS Wolfhound (L56)
Ordered: 9 December 1916
Builder: Fairfield Shipbuilding and Engineering Company, Govan, Scotland
Laid down: April 1917
Launched: 14 March 1918
Commissioned: 27 April 1918
Reclassified: Escort destroyer in May 1940
Motto: 'In at the death'
Honours and
awards:
  • DUNKIRK 1940
  • NORTH SEA 1943–45
Fate: Sold in February 1948 for breaking up
Badge: On a Field Black, a wolfhound's head, Silver, collared Gold.
General characteristics
Class and type: W class destroyer
Displacement: 1,100 tons
Length: 300 ft (91 m) o/a, 312 ft (95 m) p/p
Beam: 26 ft 9 in (8.15 m)
Draught:
  • 9 ft (2.7 m) standard
  • 11 ft 3 in (3.43 m) deep
Propulsion:
  • Three Yarrow type Water-tube boilers
  • Brown-Curtis steam turbines
  • Two shafts
  • 27,000 shp (20,000 kW)
Speed: 34 kn (63 km/h)
Range:
  • 320–370 tons oil
  • 3,500 nmi (6,500 km) at 15 kn (28 km/h)
  • 900 nmi (1,700 km) at 32 kn (59 km/h)
Complement: 110
Armament:
  • 6 × 21 in (530 mm) torpedo tubes
  • 4 × single 4 in (100 mm) low-angled guns

HMS Wolfhound (L56) was a W-class destroyer of the Royal Navy. She served during the First and Second World Wars. She was launched on 14 March 1918 and was sold for scrap in February 1948.

Career[edit]

First World War and inter-war period[edit]

Wolfhound was commissioned too late to see much active service in the First World War. She spent the war as part of the 13th Destroyer Flotilla with the Grand Fleet, and was assigned to the 2nd Destroyer Flotilla with the Atlantic Fleet in 1921. The flotilla was transferred to the Mediterranean for a period, after which Wolfhound was placed in reserve at Chatham. In 1938 she was one of the old V and W class ships to be selected to be converted to a long range anti-aircraft destroyer escort, a process carried out at Chatham and completed in May 1940.

Second World War[edit]

After working up she was assigned to the 1st Destroyer Flotilla at Portsmouth in May, which was assigned to defend the Channel convoys. As the allied forces retreated, Wolfhound was one of the ships detached to support the evacuation of troops from France, and on 26 May she and HMS Verity bombarded Calais. The following day Wolfhound was deployed out of Dover to assist communications during the Dunkirk evacuation. On 28 May she embarked 142 troops and took them to Dover, but the following day she was caught in an air-attack at Dunkirk and badly damaged, having her back broken. She was salvaged and towed to Chatham to be repaired. Repair work lasted until mid-1942, as ships that could be returned to service more quickly were prioritised.

Wolfhound finally returned to service in November, and was deployed to defend convoys sailing through the North Sea. She carried out this task for the rest of the war. After VE Day she was detached to support the re-occupation of Norway. On 14 May she and HMS Wolsey were deployed with Norwegian corvettes to cover minesweeping operations prior to the re-occupation of Bergen.

Postwar[edit]

Wolfhound was paid off after the Japanese surrender and reduced to the reserve. She was sold to BISCO in February 1948 and was towed to the River Forth later that year to be broken up by Granton Shipbreakers.

Bibliography[edit]

  • Campbell, John (1985). Naval Weapons of World War II. Annapolis, Maryland: Naval Institute Press. ISBN 0-87021-459-4. 
  • Chesneau, Roger, ed. (1980). Conway's All the World's Fighting Ships 1922–1946. Greenwich, UK: Conway Maritime Press. ISBN 0-85177-146-7. 
  • Colledge, J. J.; Warlow, Ben (2006) [1969]. Ships of the Royal Navy: The Complete Record of all Fighting Ships of the Royal Navy (Rev. ed.). London: Chatham Publishing. ISBN 978-1-86176-281-8. OCLC 67375475. 
  • Cocker, Maurice; Allan, Ian. Destroyers of the Royal Navy, 1893-1981. ISBN 0-7110-1075-7. 
  • Friedman, Norman (2009). British Destroyers From Earliest Days to the Second World War. Annapolis, Maryland: Naval Institute Press. ISBN 978-1-59114-081-8. 
  • Gardiner, Robert & Gray, Randal, eds. (1984). Conway's All the World's Fighting Ships: 1906–1921. Annapolis, Maryland: Naval Institute Press. ISBN 0-85177-245-5. 
  • Lenton, H. T. (1998). British & Empire Warships of the Second World War. Annapolis, Maryland: Naval Institute Press. ISBN 1-55750-048-7. 
  • March, Edgar J. (1966). British Destroyers: A History of Development, 1892-1953; Drawn by Admiralty Permission From Official Records & Returns, Ships' Covers & Building Plans. London: Seeley Service. OCLC 164893555. 
  • Preston, Antony (1971). 'V & W' Class Destroyers 1917-1945. London: Macdonald. OCLC 464542895. 
  • Raven, Alan & Roberts, John (1979). 'V' and 'W' Class Destroyers. Man o'War. 2. London: Arms & Armour. ISBN 0-85368-233-X. 
  • Rohwer, Jürgen (2005). Chronology of the War at Sea 1939-1945: The Naval History of World War Two (Third Revised ed.). Annapolis, Maryland: Naval Institute Press. ISBN 1-59114-119-2. 
  • Whinney, Bob (2000). The U-boat Peril: A Fight for Survival. Cassell. ISBN 0-304-35132-6. 
  • Whitley, M. J. (1988). Destroyers of World War 2. Annapolis, Maryland: Naval Institute Press. ISBN 0-87021-326-1. 
  • Winser, John de D. (1999). B.E.F. Ships Before, At and After Dunkirk. Gravesend, Kent: World Ship Society. ISBN 0-905617-91-6. 

External links[edit]