Royal Naval Armaments Depot
A Royal Naval Armament Depot (RNAD) was a group of armament depots dedicated to supplying the needs of the Royal Navy as well as the Royal Air Force, British Army and foreign/commonwealth governments; they were sister depots of Royal Naval Cordite Factories, Royal Naval Torpedo and Royal Naval Mine Depots. Between 1965 and 1994, they were part of the Royal Naval Supply and Transport Service (RNSTS).
Most RNADs were located near to Royal Navy Dockyards to facilitate the transfer of armaments between the depot and the warships; but not too close to minimise the risk of any accident or explosion in the depot causing damage to warships. The term RNAD is no longer in use, except for RNAD Coulport which is the UK Strategic Weapon Facility for the Trident Missile System. The RNSTS has also ceased to exist firstly being renamed the 'Warship Support Agency' and, presently, known as part of the 'Defence Equipment and Support' (DE&S) conglomerate. Those RNADs (except Coulport) that are still in use today are known as Defence Munitions centres (DM), e.g. DM Beith.
The earliest Naval Ordnance Depots, which later became RNADs, were built by the Board of Ordnance. Many were former forts with large gunpowder magazines and other facilities, such as at Priddy's Hard and Upnor Castle. The Board of Ordnance was responsible for all forts and armaments within the United Kingdom as well as the British Empire. When the Board of Ordnance was abolished in 1855, control passed first to the War Office, then in 1891 to the Admiralty.
On 1 January 1965 control of the armament depots passed to the Ministry of Defence and they became part of the Royal Naval Supply and Transport Service (RNSTS). The RNSTS was formed from an amalgamation of the Directorates of Naval Stores, Victualling, Armament Supply, and Movements.
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Disbandment of the RNSTS
On 1 April 1994, the RNSTS ceased to exist and was absorbed into the Naval Support Command. The RNADs also lost their independence.
List of RNADs and their status
|RNAD Beith||operational as DM Beith|
|RNAD Auchemade Quarry||Ayrshire||Closed - (sub depot of RNAD Beith)|
|RNAD Broughton Moor||Decommissioned|
|RNAD Bull Point||Closed|
|RNAD Butcher Island||Bombay||Closed|
|RNAD Crombie||Operational as DM Crombie|
|RNAD Bandeath||Closed||sub depot of RNAD Crombie.|
|RNAD Grangemouth||Closed||sub depot of RNAD Crombie)|
|RNAD Leadburn||Closed||(sub depot of RNAD Crombie)|
|RNAD Dean Hill||Closed|
|RNAD Ditton Priors||1968||Closed||now an industrial estate|
|RNAD Glen Douglas||Operational as DM Glen Douglas|
|RNAD Fort William||Closed||(sub depot of RNAD Crombie)|
|RNAD Achdalieu||Closed||(sub depot of RNAD Fort William)|
|RNAD Annat||Closed||(sub depot of RNAD Fort William)|
|RNAD Caol Farm||Closed||(sub depot of RNAD Fort William)|
|RNAD Corpach||Closed||(sub depot of RNAD Fort William)|
|RNAD Lochailort||Closed||(sub depot of RNAD Fort William)|
|RNAD Locheilside||Closed||(sub depot of RNAD Fort William)|
|RNAD Gosport||Operational as DM Gosport|
|RNAD Elson||Operational as DM Gosport|
|RNAD Frater||Operational as DM Gosport|
|RNAD Priddy's Hard||Closed||used for housing and a museum - Explosion (see Priddy's Hard)|
|RNAD Lodge Hill||Closed||now Defence Explosive Ordnance Disposal, Munitions and Search School (DEMSS South)|
|RNAD Port Said||Closed|
|RNAD Spectacle Island||Sydney||Closed|
|RNCF Holton Heath||Closed||Cordite Factory|
|RNMD Milford Haven||Closed||Mine Depot|
|RNPF Caerwent||Closed||Propellant Factory|
|RNTD Chatham||Closed||Torpedo Depot|
|RNTF Alexandria||Dunbartonshire||Closed||Torpedo Factory|
|RNTF Greenock||Closed||Torpedo Factory|
- Semark (1997). Page 6.
- Semark (1997). Page 1.
- Semark (1997). Pp 464-465.
- "NAVAL ESTABLISHMENTS, (SCOTLAND)". millbanksystems.com. Retrieved 2 May 2015.
- W N Mansfield (1995), "Priddy's Hard 1846 - 1906 - The site impact of the introduction of modern chemical explosives" - BSc (Hons) Archaeology dissertation.
- Semark, H.W. (1997). The Royal Naval Armaments Depots of Priddy's Hard, Elson, Frater and Bedebham (Gosport, Hampshire) 1768 to 1977. Winchester: Hampshire County Council. ISBN 1-85975-132-6.