RFA Sir Lancelot (L3029)
RFA Sir Lancelot. San Carlos Water. 1982
|Laid down:||March 1962|
|Launched:||25 June 1963|
|Commissioned:||16 January 1964|
|Decommissioned:||31 March 1989|
|Fate:||Sold commercially, June 1989|
|Fate:||Sold to Republic of Singapore Navy, 1992|
|Owner:||Republic of Singapore Navy|
|Commissioned:||5 May 1994|
|Owner:||Glenn Defense Marine Asia|
|Fate:||Sold for breaking, 2008|
|General characteristics as Sir Lancelot|
|Class and type:||Round Table class LSL (prototype)|
|Length:||412 ft (126 m)|
|Beam:||60 ft (18 m)|
|Draught:||13 ft (4.0 m)|
|Speed:||17 knots (31 km/h; 20 mph)|
|Range:||9,200 nautical miles (17,000 km; 10,600 mi) at 15 knots (28 km/h; 17 mph)|
|Complement:||68 crew, up to 340 passengers|
|Armament:||2 x 40 mm Bofors guns|
|Aircraft carried:||Up to 20 Wessex helicopters (1973)|
RFA Sir Lancelot (L3029) was the lead ship and prototype of the Round Table class landing ship logistics, an amphibious warfare design operated by the British Armed Forces. Commissioned in 1964, the ship was initially operated by the British-India Steam Navigation Company, then was transferred to the Royal Fleet Auxiliary in 1970. Sir Lancelot was decommissioned and sold in 1989 to the South African company Lowline; she was renamed Lowland Lancer, and was used as a Channel ferry, then a floating casino. The vessel was purchased by the Republic of Singapore Navy in 1992, and was commissioned as RSS Perseverance (L206) in 1994. She was sold again in 2003, to Glenn Defense Marine Asia, which renamed the ship Glenn Braveheart. In early 2008, the ship was sold for breaking up as scrap, and taken to Bangladesh.
Design and construction
Constructed by Fairfield S&E, the vessel was laid down in March 1962, launched on 25 June 1963, and commissioned on 16 January 1964.
In 1982, as part of the Amphibious Task Group engaged in the Falklands war, she entered San Carlos Water on 21 May and uniquely remained there for the duration of the conflict. On the 24 May at around 10:15, she was hit by a 1,000 lb (450 kg) bomb, which failed to explode, from one of four Argentinian Air Force A-4 Skyhawks. This bomb penetrated her starboard side of the ship and she was temporarily evacuated pending its removal. Thereafter she remained in San Carlos Water providing accommodation and base facilities to a variety of military units. Following the cessation of hostilities and some repairs, she operated around the Falklands until 26 July, returning to Portsmouth on 18 August.
Sir Lancelot was decommissioned on 31 March 1989, and sold in June 1989 to the British company Lowline, which renamed the vessel Lowland Lancer. She initially operated as a cross-channel ferry on the Weymouth, Dorset to Cherbourg route. This was followed by a spell as the replacement Royal Mail ship while RMS St Helena was undergoing repairs. On arrival in Cape Town, the vessel stayed in South Africa and opened as a floating casino.
The ship was sold on in 1992 to the Republic of Singapore Navy, was renamed RSS Perseverance (L206), and was commissioned on 5 May 1994 following a two-year refit. Perseverance was deployed to East Timor as part of the Australian-led INTERFET peacekeeping taskforce from 9 January to 17 February 2000.
In December 2003, the ship was sold to Glenn Defense Marine Asia, which renamed the ship Glenn Braveheart. According to US Court records relating to the extensive corruption scandal and convictions of very senior US Navy officers and other personnel involving bribery, fraud and "Sex-for-secrets" on the part of Glenn Defense relating to the service and resupply of Navy ships at Asian ports, the vessel would often deploy alongside the USS Blue Ridge, the 7th Fleet’s flagship. When in port, the Braveheart would serve as "a giant party boat, with prostitutes in the wardroom to entertain US officers."
- "Sir Lancelot goes to breakers". The Shipping Times. 12 February 2008. Archived from the original on 6 June 2008. Retrieved 11 October 2010.
- Stevens, David (2007). Strength Through Diversity: The combined naval role in Operation Stabilise (PDF). Working Papers. 20. Canberra: Sea Power Centre - Australia. p. 14. ISBN 978-0-642-29676-4. ISSN 1834-7231. Retrieved 6 September 2010.
- Whitlock, Craig The Man Who Seduced the 7th Fleet The Washington Post, May 28, 2016
- Whitlock, Craig Highest-ranking Navy Officer Yet Sentenced in Sex-for-secrets Scandal The Washington Post, March 25, 2016
- Raymond Blackman, Ships of the Royal Navy (Macdonald and Jane's, London, 1973)