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HMS London - World Naval Ships Directory

HMS London

Name : HMS London
Laid Down : 23rd February 1926
Launched : 14th September 1927
Completed : 31st January 1929
Type : Cruiser
Class : London
Builder : Portsmouth
Country : UK
Pennants : 69, C178, C69
Fate : Scrapped 1950

His Majesty’s Dockyard Portsmouth launched this County class heavy cruiser on 14 September 1927 and she entered service in the Royal Navy on 31 January 1929. LONDON served with the 1st Cruiser Squadron until March 1939, and was the flagship of Admiral Max Horton during his time in command of the Squadron. LONDON and her sister ship SHROPSHIRE facilitated the evacuation of thousands of civilians from Barcelona during the Spanish Civil War. Chatham Royal Dockyard reconstructed her from March 1939, giving her more armour, increased anti-aircraft armament, a new bridge and aircraft hangars and replacing her three raked funnels with two upright ones. She emerged from this in February 1941, and took part in the pursuit of the enemy German battleship BISMARCK in May 1941, followed by intercepting several of BISMARCK’s supply ships.

The reconstruction resulted in additional weight which strained her hull and she had to return to dock for repairs in late 1941. After this she served on Russian convoy escort duties, including the ill-fated convoy PQ.17, until November 1942 when she went back for more repairs in early 1943 before serving in the Far East in 1943-45, and with the Eastern Fleet postwar.

Her last action was in 1949, when she unsuccessfully tried to cover the withdrawal of the frigate Amethyst in the Yangtse. On that occasion, the narrowness of the river prevented the cruiser from using her overwhelming superiority in firepower to full advantage, and she had to continue upstream without achieving anything useful she suffered 15 men killed during duels with Chinese shore batteries in the unsuccessful rescue efforts. After twenty years of service the old ship was sold on 3 January 1950 for scrapping, and arrived at the Barrow yard of Thomas. W. Ward Ltd. later that month.

HMS London Photos for Sale
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Seaplane of HMS London.


Torpedo Firing from HMS London.


HMS London, July 1935.


HMS London, May 1937.


HMS London, May 1937.


HMS London, 1946.


HMS London c.1946


HMS London pictured c.1930s


HMS London, Photographed early 1930s checking the anti mine equipment.


HMS London c.1930. Alongside is London ferry Edith.


HMS London.


HMS London.


HMS London.

Other images featuring this ship :





HMS Revenge (no. 5) with sister ship HMS Royal Sovereign (no.3) and HMS Resource (no.2), HMS London (no.4) and HMS Queen Elizabeth (no. 6) with HMS Ramillies in dock (no.1). Ships pictured in Valetta Harbour.

Timeline Entries :


23rd February 1926 - Laid down at Portsmouth Dockyard
14th September 1927 - Pennant Number 69
14th September 1927 - Launched
1929 - Mediterranean Cruise
31st January 1929 - Commissioned
10th April 1929 - Arrived Valencia
16th April 1929 - Sailed Valencia
4th July 1930 - Arrived Nauplia
8th April 1931 - Capt. H.M. Burrough in Command
8th April 1931 - Arrived Funchal
7th January 1932 - Sailed Malta
8th January 1932 - Arrived Port Augusta
10th January 1932 - At Augusta
29th January 1932 - Arrived Malta
30th March 1932 - Arrived Algiers
6th April 1932 - At Palma
8th April 1932 - Arrived Cannes
14th April 1932 - Arrived Aranci Bay
14th April 1932 - Arrived Aranci Bay
20th April 1932 - Sailed Aranci Bay for Malta
21st April 1932 - Sailed Aranci Bay
22nd April 1932 - Arrived Malta
22nd April 1932 - Arrived Malta
1st October 1932 - 1st Cruiser Squadron. Mediterranean Fleet
1st October 1932 - Flagship. Rear Admiral G. K. Chetwode, CB, CBE
1st October 1932 - Capt. H. H. Harwood, OBE in Command
14th January 1933 - Arrived Platea
25th January 1933 - Sailed Platea
25th January 1933 - Arrived Gulf of Patras
1st February 1933 - Arrived Malta
28th March 1933 - Sailed Pollensa for San Remo
30th March 1933 - Arrived San Remo
12th April 1933 - Arrived Villefranche
24th April 1933 - Sailed Villefranche
27th April 1933 - Arrived Malta
17th June 1933 - Sailed Malta
29th June 1933 - Arrived Corfu
4th July 1933 - Sailed Corfu. Arrived Durazzo Bay
10th July 1933 - Sailed Durazzo Bay
11th July 1933 - Arrived Ancona
17th July 1933 - Sailed Ancona
18th July 1933 - Arrived Susak
26th July 1933 - Sailed Susak
27th July 1933 - Arrived Kastel Bay
4th August 1933 - Sailed Kastel Bay
5th August 1933 - Arrived Kotor
15th August 1933 - Sailed Kotor
17th August 1933 - Arrived Malta
31st August 1933 - Sailed Malta
4th September 1933 - Arrived Beirut
12th September 1933 - Sailed Beirut
13th September 1933 - Arrived Alexandria
20th September 1933 - Sailed Alexandria
22nd September 1933 - Arrived Gavrion Bay
25th September 1933 - Sailed Gavrion Bay
26th September 1933 - Arrived Thaso
26th September 1933 - Arrived Thaso
2nd October 1933 - Sailed Thaso
3rd October 1933 - Arrived Milo
6th October 1933 - Sailed Milo
7th October 1933 - Arrived Port Eretria
11th October 1933 - Sailed Port Eretria
12th October 1933 - Arrived Navarin
12th October 1933 - Arrived Navarin
12th October 1933 - Flagship of Rear-Admiral J.K. im Thurn
21st October 1933 - Sailed Navarin
21st October 1933 - Sailed Navarin
23rd October 1933 - Arrived Malta
23rd October 1933 - Arrived Malta
9th January 1934 - Sailed Malta for cruise
10th January 1934 - Sailed Malta for short winter cruise
11th January 1934 - Arrived Corfu
11th January 1934 - Arrived Corfu
23rd January 1934 - Sailed Corfu
25th January 1934 - Arrived Malta
13th February 1934 - Sailed Malta for U.K. and refit
13th February 1934 - Capt. H.H. Harwood in Command
13th February 1934 - Sailed Malta for Gibraltar
17th February 1934 - Arrived Gibraltar ans sailed for Portsmouth
17th February 1934 - Arrived Gibraltar
18th February 1934 - Sailed Gibraltar
21st February 1934 - Arrived Portsmouth
22nd February 1934 - 1st Cruiser Squadron, Mediterranean Station
16th April 1934 - Capt. H.H. Harwood Relinquished Command
17th April 1934 - Recommissioned at Portsmouth
17th April 1934 - Flagship of 1st Cruiser Squadron, Mediterranean
17th April 1934 - Capt. H.A. Kelsey Assumed Command
17th April 1934 - Recommissioned at Portsmouth
17th April 1934 - Capt. F.H.W. Goolden in Command
17th April 1934 - Recommissioned at Portsmouth
21st April 1934 - Completed refit at Portsmouth
27th June 1934 - Flagship of Rear-Admiral J.K. im Thurn
27th June 1934 - Sailed Malta for Summer Cruise
9th July 1934 - Sailed Argostoli
15th August 1934 - Arrived Malta
19th January 1935 - Sailed Istambul
8th April 1935 - Sailed Gibraltar for Malta
3rd May 1935 - Flagship of Vice-Admiral J.K. Thurn
3rd May 1935 - Arrived Famagusta
10th May 1935 - Sailed Famagusta
14th May 1935 - Arrived Malta
11th June 1935 - Sailed Malta for Gibraltar
11th June 1935 - Flagship of Vice-Admiral J.K. Thurn
15th June 1935 - Arrived Gibraltar from Malta
16th July 1935 - Attended 1935 Spithead Fleet Review
31st July 1935 - Arrived Malta
29th August 1935 - Sailed Malta
31st August 1935 - Arrived Corfu
5th September 1935 - Sailed Corfu
6th September 1935 - Arrived Navarin
13th September 1935 - Sailed Navarin
14th September 1935 - Arrived Gruz
24th September 1935 - Sailed Gruz
25th September 1935 - Arrived Brioni
3rd October 1935 - Arrived Susak
3rd October 1935 - Sailed Brioni
11th October 1935 - Sailed Susak
14th October 1935 - Arrived Navarin
22nd October 1935 - Sailed Navarin
24th October 1935 - Arrived Malta
12th February 1937 - Sailed Portsmouth
12th February 1937 - Captain H. Pott in Command
12th February 1937 - Flagship of Vice-Admiral C.E. Kennedy
22nd February 1937 - Arrived Malta
27th February 1937 - Sailed Malta
1st March 1937 - Commenced Combined Exercises
12th March 1937 - Completed Combined Exercised
15th March 1937 - Arrived Malta
15th April 1937 - Completed Work Up
8th May 1937 - Sailed Tangier
19th June 1937 - Arrived Malta
19th June 1937 - Arrived Malta
10th July 1937 - Arrived Malta
26th August 1937 - Arrived Argostoli
30th August 1937 - Sailed Argostoli
1st September 1937 - Arrived Venice
8th September 1937 - Sailed Venice
10th September 1937 - Arrived Patras
20th September 1937 - Sailed Patras
22nd September 1937 - Arrived Ierissos
27th September 1937 - Sailed Ierissos
29th September 1937 - Arrived Alexandria
17th October 1937 - Sailed Alexandria
19th October 1937 - Arrived Malta
3rd November 1937 - Sailed Malta
5th November 1937 - Arrived East Palma
11th November 1937 - Arrived Valencis
25th November 1937 - Sailed Marseilles
27th November 1937 - Arrived Malta
18th December 1937 - Sailed Malta
27th December 1937 - Sailed Gibraltar
29th December 1937 - Arrived Palma
January 1938 - 1st Cruiser Squadron, Mediterranean
7th January 1938 - Sailed Palma
8th January 1938 - Arrived Malta
3rd March 1938 - Sailed Malta
28th March 1938 - Arrived Malta
21st April 1938 - Sailed Malta
22nd April 1938 - Arrived Palma
28th April 1938 - Arrived Marseilles
11th May 1938 - Sailed Marseilles
12th May 1938 - Arrived Villefranche
25th May 1938 - Sailed Villefranche
26th May 1938 - Arrived Malta
5th July 1938 - Sailed Malta
7th July 1938 - Arrived Navarin
20th July 1938 - Sailed Navarin
22nd July 1938 - Arrived Malta
27th July 1938 - Sailed Malta
28th July 1938 - Arrived Castellamara
3rd August 1938 - Sailed Castellamara
4th August 1938 - Arrived Rapallo
12th August 1938 - Sailed Rapallo
13th August 1938 - Arrived Aranci Bay
22nd August 1938 - Sailed Aranci Bay
25th August 1938 - Arrived Malta
19th September 1938 - Sailed Malta
27th September 1938 - Arrived Portsmouth
5th December 1938 - Sailed Portsmouth for Chatham
23rd January 1939 - Lt. Cdr. Robert Alexander Assumed Command
15th March 1939 - Commenced rebuilding at Chatham
April 1939 - Lt. Cdr. Robert Alexander Relinquished Command
10th February 1941 - Completed rebuilding at Chatham
25th May 1941 - Took part in the Battle of Denmark Strait
26th May 1943 - Arrived Scapa Flow
15th June 1943 - Sailed Scapa Flow
20th October 1943 - Operation FR took place, this was the passage of escorts to North Russia
28th October 1943 - Completed Operation FR
16th April 1944 - Task Force 70
16th April 1944 - Sailed Trincomalee
8th April 1945 - Sailed Trincomalee for North West coast of Sumatra
28th August 1945 - Arrived Sebang
28th August 1945 - Arrived Sabang, Sumatra
28th August 1945 - Comm A.L. Poland in Command
30th August 1948 - Arrived Hong Kong from exercised
30th August 1948 - Flagship of Admiral Denis Boyd
3rd September 1948 - Deployed in the Far East
1949 - Captain Peter Cazalet in Command
21st April 1949 - Attacked by Chinese while going to the aid of HMS Amethyst
25th April 1949 - At Shanghai
1950 - Sold and broken

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Database Currently Holds : 6271 ships and 6288 crew!

Last edited : 12:45, July 20, 2011
By : tjstoneman


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