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Destroyer histories. Royal naval W and Z class destroyers. Destroyer website dedicated to the history of HMS Kempenfelt, HMS Wager, HMS Wakeful, HMS Wessex, HMS Whelp, HMS Whirlwind, HMS Wizard, HMS Wrangler, HMS Myngs, HMS Zambesi, HMS Zebra, HMS Zenith, HMS Zephyr, HMS Zest and HMS Zodiac from their launch to their participation in major wars also notice board for families of ex-crew of W and Z Class destroyers.  The W Class was the Class to be completed with 4.7 - inch L A main armament guns and was the first entire class to be completed with lattice Masts.

HMS Whirlwind.  Built by Hawthorne Leslie and launched on the 30th August 1943.  Served in the Home Fleet until 1945 then transferred to the Pacific Theatre. (with all sister ships of W class). In 1953 she was converted into a Frigate and  finally she was used as a target in 1974 and sunk.

HMS Whelp. Built by Hawthorn Leslie and launched 3rd June 1943 she served in the Home fleet until 1945 then the pacific. In 1952 she was sold to South Africa.

Displacement : 1710 tons (HMS Kempenfelt and HMS Myngs 1730 tons)  Speed : 36 knots.  Complement 186 (HMS Kempenfelt and HMS Myngs 222).  Armament : Four 4.7in (W Class) or Four 4.6in (Z Class) DP, Two 40mm AA and Eight 20mm AA or Four 40mm AA and Four 20mm AA or Six 40mm AA guns.  Eight 21in TT

HMS Kempenfelt   R03(ex Valentine) 8th May 1943 Transferred to Yugoslavia 1956. becoming Kotor 
HMS Wager  R.98 1st November 1943 Transferred to Yugoslavia 1956.
HMS Wakeful  R.59  (ex Zebra) 30th June 1943 Broken up  July 1971at Inverkeithing 
HMS Wessex  R.78  (ex Zeneth) 2nd September 1943 Transferred to South Africa 1950. becoming Riebeeck
HMS Whelp  R.37 3rd June 1943 Transferred to South Africa 1953. becoming Simon van Der Stel
HMS Whirlwind  R.87 30th August 1943 Sunk as a target 1974.
HMS Wizard   R.72 29th September 1943 Broken up  March 1967.at Inverkeithing 
HMS Wrangler  R.48 30th December 1943 Transferred to South Africa 1956. becoming Vrystaat 
HMS Myngs  R.06 31st May 1943 Transferred to Egypt 1955. becoming El Qahar
HMS Zambesi  R.66 21st November 1943 Broken up 12th February 1959. at Briton Ferry 
HMS Zealous  R.39  28th February 1944 Transferred to Israel 1955. becoming Elath 
HMS Zebra  R.81  (ex wakeful) 8th March 1944 Broken up 12th February  1959 at Newport  
HMS Zenith R.95 5th June 1944 Transferred to Egypt 1955 becoming El Fateh
HMS Zephyr  R.19 15th July 1944 Broken up  2nd July 1958. at Dunston
HMS Zest  R.02 14th October 1943 Broken up  August 1970. at Dalmuir
HMS Zodiac  R.54 11th March 1944 Transferred to Israel 1955. becoming Yaffa 
HMS Wager

HMS Wager.

Contributed by email.

Crew members of HMS Wager.

Contributed by email.

HMS Wakeful

HMS Wakeful, August 1946.

A large image size 10" x 7" approx, is available.  Reproduced from the original negative / photo under license from MPL, the copyright holder.  A signed numbered certificate is supplied. Price 25.   Order photograph here   Order Code  XMP2130

Original republished MPL Photograph (Postcard Size).  Price 5 Click here to order.  Order Code  MP2130

HMS Wakeful, 1931.

A large image size 10" x 7" approx, is available.  Reproduced from the original negative / photo under license from MPL, the copyright holder.  A signed numbered certificate is supplied. Price 25.   Order photograph here   Order Code  XMP2131

Original republished MPL Photograph (Postcard Size).  Price 5 Click here to order.  Order Code  MP2131

HMS Wakeful, 1946.

A large image size 10" x 7" approx, is available.  Reproduced from the original negative / photo under license from MPL, the copyright holder.  A signed numbered certificate is supplied. Price 25.   Order photograph here   Order Code  XMP2132

Original republished MPL Photograph (Postcard Size).  Price 5 Click here to order.  Order Code  MP2132

HMS Wakeful, 1960.

A large image size 10" x 7" approx, is available.  Reproduced from the original negative / photo under license from MPL, the copyright holder.  A signed numbered certificate is supplied. Price 25.   Order photograph here   Order Code  XMP2133

Original republished MPL Photograph (Postcard Size).  Price 5 Click here to order.  Order Code  MP2133

HMS Wessex

Jan Van Riebeeck (ex - HMS Wessex), October 1950.

A large image size 10" x 7" approx, is available.  Reproduced from the original negative / photo under license from MPL, the copyright holder.  A signed numbered certificate is supplied. Price 25.   Order photograph here   Order Code  XMP2134

Original republished MPL Photograph (Postcard Size).  Price 5 Click here to order.  Order Code  MP2134

HMS Whelp

HMS Whelp in Hong Kong after Japanese surrender

Photo supplied by Arthur Newton (ex P/JX514858) who was a crew member for its service from May 1944 until December 2nd 1945. In the Pacific Theatre pennant numbers were changed and accordingly HMS Whelp changed from R37 to D33.

Simon Van Der Stel (ex - HMS Whelp), Augusat 1970.

A large image size 10" x 7" approx, is available.  Reproduced from the original negative / photo under license from MPL, the copyright holder.  A signed numbered certificate is supplied. Price 25.   Order photograph here   Order Code  XMP2135

Original republished MPL Photograph (Postcard Size).  Price 5 Click here to order.  Order Code  MP2135

HMS Whirlwind

HMS Whirlwind, August 1946.

A large image size 10" x 7" approx, is available.  Reproduced from the original negative / photo under license from MPL, the copyright holder.  A signed numbered certificate is supplied. Price 25.   Order photograph here   Order Code  XMP2136

Original republished MPL Photograph (Postcard Size).  Price 5 Click here to order.  Order Code  MP2136

HMS Whirlwind, as a target ship, August 1973.

A large image size 10" x 7" approx, is available.  Reproduced from the original negative / photo under license from MPL, the copyright holder.  A signed numbered certificate is supplied. Price 25.   Order photograph here   Order Code  XMP2137

Original republished MPL Photograph (Postcard Size).  Price 5 Click here to order.  Order Code  MP2137

HMS Whirlwind. 

Original Post Card for sale Price 18. Order Code  PHD280

HMS Wrangler

HMS Wrangler, 1946

A large image size 10" x 7" approx, is available.  Reproduced from the original negative / photo under license from MPL, the copyright holder.  A signed numbered certificate is supplied. Price 25.   Order photograph here   Order Code  XMP2139

Original republished MPL Photograph (Postcard Size).  Price 5 Click here to order.  Order Code  MP2139

HMS Wrangler, October 1946.

A large image size 10" x 7" approx, is available.  Reproduced from the original negative / photo under license from MPL, the copyright holder.  A signed numbered certificate is supplied. Price 25.   Order photograph here   Order Code  XMP2140

Original republished MPL Photograph (Postcard Size).  Price 5 Click here to order.  Order Code  MP2140

HMS Myngs

HMS Myngs, June 1947.

A large image size 10" x 7" approx, is available.  Reproduced from the original negative / photo under license from MPL, the copyright holder.  A signed numbered certificate is supplied. Price 25.   Order photograph here   Order Code  XMP2142

Original republished MPL Photograph (Postcard Size).  Price 5 Click here to order.  Order Code  MP2142

HMS Wizard

HMS Wizard entering Grand Harbour, Malta in 1956 after the 'Suez' crisis sent in by Spencer Shawcross who was an Able Seaman completing National service on 'Wizard' at the time.

HMS Wizard, July 1950.

A large image size 10" x 7" approx, is available.  Reproduced from the original negative / photo under license from MPL, the copyright holder.  A signed numbered certificate is supplied. Price 25.   Order photograph here   Order Code  XMP2138

Original republished MPL Photograph (Postcard Size).  Price 5 Click here to order.  Order Code  MP2138

Crew of HMS Wizard, 1949.

A reproduction of this original photo / photo-postcard size 10" x 7" approx available.  Order photograph here  Walker Archive. Order Code  LGE0127

My father served on HMS Wizard during WW2. I have just transcribed two letters from Captain Hodgkinson which detail the Wizards activities. I have attached both letters and thought you would find them useful. I will forward some photos in the near future.   Michael Kennedy    VIEW LETTERS HERE :                    LETTER 1                                  LETTER 2

HMS Zambesi

HMS Zambesi at Gibraltar. Contributed by email.  John Griffiths

HMS Zebra

HMS Zebra laid up, October 1955.

A large image size 10" x 7" approx, is available.  Reproduced from the original negative / photo under license from MPL, the copyright holder.  A signed numbered certificate is supplied. Price 25.   Order photograph here   Order Code  XMP2143

Original republished MPL Photograph (Postcard Size).  Price 5 Click here to order.  Order Code  MP2143

HMS Zephyr

HMS Zephyr, September 1948.

A large image size 10" x 7" approx, is available.  Reproduced from the original negative / photo under license from MPL, the copyright holder.  A signed numbered certificate is supplied. Price 25.   Order photograph here   Order Code  XMP2147

Original republished MPL Photograph (Postcard Size).  Price 5 Click here to order.  Order Code  MP2147

HMS Zephyr, August 1946.

A large image size 10" x 7" approx, is available.  Reproduced from the original negative / photo under license from MPL, the copyright holder.  A signed numbered certificate is supplied. Price 25.   Order photograph here   Order Code  XMP2146

Original republished MPL Photograph (Postcard Size).  Price 5 Click here to order.  Order Code  MP2146

HMS Zephyr, August 1946.

A large image size 10" x 7" approx, is available.  Reproduced from the original negative / photo under license from MPL, the copyright holder.  A signed numbered certificate is supplied. Price 25.   Order photograph here   Order Code  XMP2145

Original republished MPL Photograph (Postcard Size).  Price 5 Click here to order.  Order Code  MP2145

HMS Zephyr, December 1944.

A large image size 10" x 7" approx, is available.  Reproduced from the original negative / photo under license from MPL, the copyright holder.  A signed numbered certificate is supplied. Price 25.   Order photograph here   Order Code  XMP2144

Original republished MPL Photograph (Postcard Size).  Price 5 Click here to order.  Order Code  MP2144

HMS Zest

HMS Zest, for scrapping, August 1970.

A large image size 10" x 7" approx, is available.  Reproduced from the original negative / photo under license from MPL, the copyright holder.  A signed numbered certificate is supplied. Price 25.   Order photograph here   Order Code  XMP2151

Original republished MPL Photograph (Postcard Size).  Price 5 Click here to order.  Order Code  MP2151

HMS Zest, July 1958.

A large image size 10" x 7" approx, is available.  Reproduced from the original negative / photo under license from MPL, the copyright holder.  A signed numbered certificate is supplied. Price 25.   Order photograph here   Order Code  XMP2150

Original republished MPL Photograph (Postcard Size).  Price 5 Click here to order.  Order Code  MP2150

HMS Zest, March 1949.

A large image size 10" x 7" approx, is available.  Reproduced from the original negative / photo under license from MPL, the copyright holder.  A signed numbered certificate is supplied. Price 25.   Order photograph here   Order Code  XMP2149

Original republished MPL Photograph (Postcard Size).  Price 5 Click here to order.  Order Code  MP2149

HMS Zest, September 1947.

A large image size 10" x 7" approx, is available.  Reproduced from the original negative / photo under license from MPL, the copyright holder.  A signed numbered certificate is supplied. Price 25.   Order photograph here   Order Code  XMP2148

Original republished MPL Photograph (Postcard Size).  Price 5 Click here to order.  Order Code  MP2148

HMS Zodiac

HMS Zodiac, 1945.

A large image size 10" x 7" approx, is available.  Reproduced from the original negative / photo under license from MPL, the copyright holder.  A signed numbered certificate is supplied. Price 25.   Order photograph here   Order Code  XMP2152

Original republished MPL Photograph (Postcard Size).  Price 5 Click here to order.  Order Code  MP2152

HMS Zodiac at Woolston.

Contributed by Trevor Piper.  Vosper Thornycroft. Click here for details of new book on the history of Vosper Thornycroft and their ships

 

Naval Historians, Crew & Family Noticeboard

W & Z Class destroyers, Message Board for naval enthusiasts and crew descendents of W & Z Class Destroyers. This website is not part of any governmental body or official websites of W & Z Class Destroyers.

Photographs and information on historical events about the aforementioned destroyers requested for this new website. If you have any information you would like to send us including photographs of crew members serving on any of these destroyers and also photographs of the ship please USE OUR MESSAGE FORM 

MESSAGES

HMS WRANGLER

KEN "BERTIE" DRIVER

I served on Wrangler, sailed with her to the Med after the 1953 Spithead Review, spent time in the Bitter Lakes and on Suez patrols, earthquake relief at Poros in Keffalonia and searched for the wreckage of the ill fated Comet airliner "Yoke Peter" off Elba.

She was a fine ship with a wonderful ship's company.

She was sold to South Africa in 1956 who, to their everlasting shame accorded to her the undignified end of being sunk in gunnery practice.

HMS WIZARD

FRANK LEECH... My Great Uncle Frank Leech born in 1914 and originally from Liverpool joined the Royal Navy in 1932 and followed his brother (George William Leech) into the submarine service in 1935. He served on a variety of submarines including HMS Olympus and HMS Starfish. In 1944 he rejoined the surface fleet serving for a short time on the destroyer HMS Wizard prior to his demobilisation. Mr Leech said: "Every time I wear this medal I shall think of all those submariners who went down, particularly those onboard HMS Olympus, which was carrying survivors from three other submarines when she hit a mine." (He is still alive today) aged 89 he has just received a commemorative medal.

DENNIS KENNEDY.. My father, Dennis, served on HMS Wizard during WW2. He was at the invasion of Normandy and at Tokyo Bay for the Japanese surrender. He is still alive an we have photos. Any who know my father contact me at m.kennedy@uws.edu.au 

WILLIAM CRAIG..  My grandfather, William, served on HMS Wizard in WW2 and I have been unable to find a print or picture of the ship. I would be delighted if anyone can help. Contact David at david.craig12@btopenworld.com 

HMS ZENITH.. My dad served on Zenith and then HMS Aisne. I am looking for pictures of both. Contact me at john@munro7.freeserve.co.uk 

HMS MYNGS

GEORGE DENNIS PRITCHATT....  My father George Dennis Pritchatt served on HMS Myngs between 1947-1948 and HMS Nelson between 1947-1950. I would like to make contact with anyone who may have served with my father. Email me at lpritchatt@sutcol.ac.uk  Kinds Regards Lynn Pritchatt

NORMAN SPENCER.. My father was a signalman on HMS Fleetwood and HMS Myngs. Still signalling and would like to hear from any old shipmates. I would also appreciate any pictures of Myngs. Contact Graham at dominator@g242.fsnet.co.uk 

My father was signalman on HMS Myngs during WW2 and over the past years have become involved with the Z Class Destroyers Association. There is a website dedicated to Z Class destroyers www.zclassdestroyers.org.uk

My brother served on HMS Myngs and I am looking for any information on the ship and any photos of the crew or ship. If you can help please contact Mr M Jones at chestnut@shaw.ca 

HMS ZODIAC

I am looking for photos and details of Zodiac as my father served on the ship. If anyone can help contact J Metcalf at draude@tiscali.co.uk 

JAMES EDWARD YOUNG.. My father served on HMS Zodiac during WW2. I am looking for anyone who may have known my father and would like to see any photos of HMS Zodiac and her crew. Contact Ted Young at promeded@prodigy.net 

HMS Whelp.. ARTY NEWTON.. I was a member of the Whelp's ships company from April 1944 when the ship was commissioned at Heburn on the Tyne until 2nd December 1945 when I left the ship in Sydney as I intended to stay in Australia having met my beloved in Melbourne in May 1945 whilst we had a 7week refit. My mate Jesse James from Staffordshire had also made plans to stay in Australia with me but he backed out unfortunately. I was stationed at Flanders Naval Depot in Melbourne until I was finally discharged on 24th September 1946. I was married on 13th July 1946 and eventually joined the Victoria Police Force until retiring in July 1985. I would love to hear from anyone who served on the Whelp or our sister ships HMS Wager, HMS Wakeful, HMS Wessex, HMS Whirlwind, HMS Wizard, HMS Wrangler.. Contact me at Kibra@iprimus.com.au 

HMS WHIRLWIND. 

DAVE (JOCK) MacDONALD.. I served on HMS Whirlwind "boys mess" in 1948, and would very much like to hear from any old oppos. Contact me at C_Forbes@btopenworld.com 

Can you help. I am a cadet at T S Whirlwind a sea cadet unit in Orpington. HMS Whirlwind is our affiliated ship. I would be grateful for any photos or information on HMS Whirlwind as I am compiling a portfolio about the ship. Contact Kris Smith at Chipmunk2nd@aol.com 

IF YOU WOULD LIKE TO LEAVE A MESSAGE USE OUR MESSAGE FORM