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HMS Cornwall - World Naval Ships Directory

HMS Cornwall

Name : HMS Cornwall
Laid Down : 9th October 1924
Launched : 11th March 1926
Completed : 23rd January 1928
Type : Cruiser
Class : Kent
Builder : Devonport
Country : UK
Pennants : 56
Fate : Sunk 5th April 1942

Upon completion CORNWALL joined the China Station. In 1936 she returned from the Far East to the United Kingdom for a refit at Chatham which added more armour and a catapult and hangar for Walrus aircraft. In 1938 CORNWALL joined the 2nd Cruiser Squadron and in 1939 she once again transferred to the China Station, joining the 5th Cruiser Squadron. In September 1939, after the outbreak of war, the cruiser moved to the Indian Ocean before operating in the central Atlantic, later returning to the Indian Oceanwhere she was sunk by Japanese carrier-based aircraft in April 1942

His Majesty’s Dockyard Devonport launched this County class heavy cruiser on 11 March 1926 and She entered service in the Royal Navy on 6 December 1927. Upon completion in 1928 CORNWALL joined the China Station. In 1936 she returned from the Far East to the United Kingdom for a refit at Chatham the following year, which added more armour and a catapult and hangar for Walrus aircraft. In 1938 with the refit completed CORNWALL joined the 2nd Cruiser Squadron. In 1939 CORNWALL once again transferred to the China Station, joining the 5th Cruiser Squadron. In September 1939, after the outbreak of war, the cruiser moved to the Indian Ocean based on Ceylon. On 5 October, she took part in the search for the German pocket battleship ADMIRAL GRAF SPEE.

In February 1940 CORNWALL docked in the dry dock at Simonstown, South Africa. In August she left the South Atlantic to proceed on convoy escort duties from Freetown. In September in the central Atlantic area, CORNWALL and DELHI intercepted a Vichy French naval expedition force consisting of three light cruisers GEORGES and three large destroyers. In May 1941 she engaged and sank the German commerce raider PINGUIN in the Indian Ocean and managed to rescue 60 crew members and 22 prisoners.

From January until March 1942 the cruiser was escorting convoys in the Indian Ocean. In early April, CORNWALL and her sister ship HMS DORSETSHIRE left the fleet to escort the aircraft carrier HMS HERMES to Trincomalee in Ceylon for repairs. On 4 April the two cruisers left the Harbour to avoid the approaching Japanese carrier fleet and set out for Addu Atoll shortly after midnight. On 5 April, a Japanese spotter plane sighted the two cruisers about 200 miles (370 km) southwest of Ceylon. Bombers immediately took off from the carriers to attack the two vessels. Hit by nine bombs, with six near misses, CORNWALL sank in 12 minutes; DORSETSHIRE also sank in this engagement. In all the light cruiser ENTERPRISE and the destroyers PALADIN and PANTHER rescued 1,120 men from the crews of both ships.

HMS Cornwall Photos for Sale
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HMS Cornwall, July 1936.


HMS Cornwall, May 1938.


HMS Cornwall, May 1938.


HMS Cornwall, June 1938.


HMS Cornwall, 1938.


HMS Cornwall. c.1930s

Timeline Entries :


11th March 1926 - Launched
May 1928 - In China
8th May 1928 - Commissioned
14th June 1928 - Sailed Montevideo
14th June 1928 - Capt. Hon. W.S. Leveson-Gower in Command
20th June 1928 - Sailed Buenos Aires
21st June 1928 - Arrived Puerto Belgrano
22nd July 1928 - Arrived Callao
27th July 1928 - Sailed Callao
2nd January 1932 - Arrived Shanghai
9th January 1932 - Capt. G.H. Knowles in Command
11th April 1932 - Sailed Shanghai for Hong Kong
1st October 1932 - Capt. G. H. Knowles, DSO in Command
1st October 1932 - 5th Cruiser Squadron, China Station
29th March 1933 - Arrived Shanghai
29th July 1933 - Arrived Tsingtao
31st July 1933 - Sailed Tsingtao for Woosung
5th August 1933 - Arrived Hankow
6th August 1933 - Arived Hankow
6th August 1933 - Capt. R.B. Davies in Command
28th August 1933 - Sailed Hankow for Woosung
8th September 1933 - Sailed Hankow
19th December 1933 - Paid off and recommissioned at Portsmouth for the China Station
13th January 1934 - Sailed Portsmouth for Gibraltar
16th January 1934 - Arrived Gibraltar
17th January 1934 - Arrived Gibraltar
18th January 1934 - Sailed Gibraltar
21st January 1934 - Arrived Malta
21st January 1934 - Arrived Malta
23rd January 1934 - Sailed Malta
25th January 1934 - Arrived Port Said
26th January 1934 - Sailed Port Said
26th January 1934 - Transit Suez
31st January 1934 - Arrived Aden
31st January 1934 - Arrived Aden
2nd February 1934 - Sailed Aden for Colombo
2nd February 1934 - Sailed Aden
9th February 1934 - Arrived Colombo
9th February 1934 - Arrived Colombo
11th February 1934 - Sailed Colombo for Penang
11th February 1934 - Sailed Colombo
15th February 1934 - Arrived Penang
15th February 1934 - Arrived Penang and sailed for Singapore
16th February 1934 - Arrived Singapore
19th February 1934 - Sailed Singapore for Hong Kong
24th February 1934 - Arrived Hong Kong
27th April 1934 - Capt. R.B. Davies in Command
27th April 1934 - Sailed Hong Kong for Wei Hai Wei
27th April 1934 - Sailed Hong Kong for Wei Hai Wei
30th April 1934 - On the China Station
10th May 1934 - At Wei Hai Wei
July 1934 - Jul 1934 At Wei Hai Wei
1st August 1934 - Sailed Tsingtao for Chinwangtao
24th September 1934 - Sailed Rosyth for Invergordon
19th October 1934 - Arrived Tsingtao
19th October 1934 - 5th Cruiser Squadron
29th October 1934 - Sailed Wei Hai Wei for Japanese waters
2nd November 1934 - Arrived Yokohama
22nd November 1934 - Arrived Shanghai
5th December 1934 - Sailed Shanghai for Hong Kong
5th December 1934 - Sailed Shanghai for Hong Kong
8th December 1934 - Arrived Hong Kong
19th December 1934 - Capt. R.B. Davies Assumed Command
16th March 1935 - Sailed Manila for Hong Kong
31st July 1935 - Sailed Chemulpo for Chefoo
27th May 1936 - At Wei Hai Wei
30th May 1936 - Arrived Penang
1st June 1936 - Sailed Penang for Colombo
17th June 1936 - Arrived Aden
19th June 1936 - Sailed Aden for Suez
27th August 1937 - Capt. Charles Otway Alexander Assumed Command
9th March 1938 - Arrived Marseilles
12th March 1938 - Arrived Gibraltar
29th March 1938 - Arrived Plymouth
5th July 1938 - Commenced Combined exercises
10th July 1938 - Completed Combined exercises
12th September 1938 - Sailed Oban for Reykjavik
October 1938 - Capt. Charles Otway Alexander Relinquished Command
9th January 1939 - Arrived Aden
30th March 1939 - Arrived Malta
3rd April 1939 - Sailed Malta for Port Said
6th April 1939 - Arrived Suex and Sailed same day
13th April 1939 - Arrived Colombo
21st April 1939 - Arrived Singapore
29th April 1939 - Sailed Singapore for Hong Kong
2nd September 1939 - 5th Cruiser Squadron, China Station
3rd September 1939 - Sailed Singapore to patrol Andaman Island area
3rd October 1939 - Sailed Calcutta on escort duties to Singapore, and returned to Colombo
6th October 1939 - Arrived at Colombo for docking
11th October 1939 - Sailed Colombo on patrol
3rd November 1939 - Arrived Colombo
10th November 1939 - Sailed Colombo to join aircraft carrier Eagle on patrol
18th November 1939 - Arrived Colombo
23rd November 1939 - Force I. At Colombo
25th November 1939 - Sailed Colombo on patrol duty in Force I
8th December 1939 - Sailed Diego Suarez for Simonstown
12th December 1939 - Arrived Durban
14th December 1939 - Sailed Durban
15th December 1939 - Arrived Durban
22nd December 1939 - Sailed Durban to Mauritius
26th December 1939 - Arrived Simonstown
2nd January 1940 - Sailed Simonstown on patrol
11th January 1940 - Arrived Capetown
26th January 1940 - Sailed Capetown on escort duties
30th January 1940 - Arrived Capetown
13th February 1940 - Force H
4th March 1940 - Sailed Freetown on patrol.
8th May 1941 - Sank the German raider Pinguin near the Seychelles Islands
8th May 1941 - Sunk German Raider Pinguin
26th March 1942 - In the Maldives
29th March 1942 - Sailed Maldives
2nd April 1942 - Arrived Maldives
5th April 1942 - Sunk

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Database Currently Holds : 6273 ships and 6288 crew!

Last edited : 13:30, July 18, 2011
By : tjstoneman


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