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Swiftsure / Tiger Class


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History of  Royal Navy cruisers from the Swiftsure and Tiger Classes. Cruisers in the class included HMS Ontario, HMS Swiftsure, HMS Blake, HMS Defence, HMS Superb and HMS Tiger including crew and families of ex-crew members notice board for these cruisers.

Also known as the Minotaur class. only three of the class were completed and two cancelled (HMS Hawke and Bellerophon)  the last three were suspended and finally completed some 9 years later to a revised design which reduced the number of guns. for a extensive RDF control, system and aswell as  an improved rate of fire.. 

RCN Ontario was initially to be called HMS Minotaur she was built at Harland and Wolff  (Belfast) and launched 29th July 1943, she was handed to the Canadian navy  in July 1944. and served in  the Pacific Fleet in  1945, and finally scrapped in Japan in November 1960

HMS Swiftsure was built by Vickers Armstrong on the Tyne and launched on the 4th February 1943. Served i  the \Home Fleet fro m1944 and finally scrapped at Inverkeithing October 1962

HMS Blake was built by Fairfield and launched on  the 20th December 1945. served until Laid up at Chatham, January 1980.  Broken Up 1982.

Displacement 8,800 tons. Speed: 32.5 knots  (except HMS Blake and HMS Defence which had a speed 31.5 knots)

Crew 730     Armament: Nine 6 - inch in triple mountings.  and ten 4-inch AA i n pairs.  sixteen 2 pdr. AA guns in quads.  eight 40mm AA in  single mounting. and six 21 inch torpedo tubes in  threes.

Armament for HMS Defence and HMS Blake with Four 6oinch guns in pairs , six 3-inch AA in pairs  no Torpedo Tubes

Swiftsure Class
RCN Ontario 29th July 1943 Broken up 1960.
HMS Swiftsure 4th February 1943 Broken up 1962.
Tiger Class
HMS Blake 20th December 1945. Laid up at Chatham, January 1980.  Broken Up 1982.
HMS Defence (later HMS Lion) 2nd September 1944. Broken up 1975.
HMS Superb 31st August 1943 Broken up 1960.
HMS Tiger 25th October 1945 Broken Up 1986.
HMS Ontario

RCN Ontario was initially to be called HMS Minotaur she was built at Harland and Wolff  (Belfast) and launched 29th July 1943, she was handed to the Canadian navy  in July 1944. and served in  the Pacific Fleet in  1945, and finally scrapped in Japan in November 1960

HMS Ontario, June 1953.

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  XMP1452

Original republished © MPL Photograph (Postcard Size).  Price £5 Click here to order.  Order Code  MP1452

HMS Swiftsure

HMS Swiftsure was built by Vickers Armstrong on the Tyne and launched on the 4th February 1943. Served in  the Home Fleet from 1944 and finally scrapped at Inverkeithing October 1962

HMS Swiftsure, laid up, April 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  XMP1454

Original republished © MPL Photograph (Postcard Size).  Price £5 Click here to order.  Order Code  MP1454

HMS Swiftsure, June 1953.

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  XMP1455

Original republished © MPL Photograph (Postcard Size).  Price £5 Click here to order.  Order Code  MP1455

HMS Swiftsure, November 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  XMP1453

Original republished © MPL Photograph (Postcard Size).  Price £5 Click here to order.  Order Code  MP1453

HMS Blake

HMS Blake was built by Fairfield and launched on  the 20th December 1945. served until Laid up at Chatham, January 1980.  Broken Up 1982.

HMS Blake, completing, July 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  XMP1469

Original republished © MPL Photograph (Postcard Size).  Price £5 Click here to order.  Order Code  MP1469

HMS Blake, 1969.

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  XMP1470

Original republished © MPL Photograph (Postcard Size).  Price £5 Click here to order.  Order Code  MP1470

HMS Blake, 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  XMP1471

Original republished © MPL Photograph (Postcard Size).  Price £5 Click here to order.  Order Code  MP1471

HMS Blake, June 1977.

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  XMP1472

Original republished © MPL Photograph (Postcard Size).  Price £5 Click here to order.  Order Code  MP1472

HMS Blake.  

Original Gale & Polden Ltd Postcard.  Price £18.  Click here to order.    Order Code  PHC463

HMS Blake.  Closing to store from RFA Regent, June 1975.

Photographed by George Mortimore L.R.P.S  Copyright Cranston Fine Arts.  A reproduction of this original photo  size 10" x 7" approx available.  Order photograph here  . Order Code  GM048

HMS Defence

HMS Defence, laid up, September 1954.

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  XMP1465

Original republished © MPL Photograph (Postcard Size).  Price £5 Click here to order.  Order Code  MP1465

HMS Lion, 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  XMP1467

Original republished © MPL Photograph (Postcard Size).  Price £5 Click here to order.  Order Code  MP1467

HMS Lion, at breakers, June 1975.

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  XMP1468

Original republished © MPL Photograph (Postcard Size).  Price £5 Click here to order.  Order Code  MP1468

HMS Lion (ex- HMS Defence)

Original Gale & Polden Ltd Postcard.  Price £12.  Click here to order.    Order Code PHX316

HMS Lion completing, April 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  XMP1466

Original republished © MPL Photograph (Postcard Size).  Price £5 Click here to order.  Order Code  MP1466

HMS Superb

HMS Superb, July 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  XMP1456

Original republished © MPL Photograph (Postcard Size).  Price £5 Click here to order.  Order Code  MP1456

HMS Superb, laid up, July 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  XMP1457

Original republished © MPL Photograph (Postcard Size).  Price £5 Click here to order.  Order Code  MP1457

HMS Superb.  Sent in by Danny Kay

ORIGINAL POSTCARD FOR SALE.  DONATED TOWARDS THE UPKEEP OF THIS SITE.

HMS Superb

Original  W Ralston Postcard.. Price £22.  Click here to order.    Order Code PHC719

HMS Tiger

HMS Tiger, fitting out, August 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  XMP1458

Original republished © MPL Photograph (Postcard Size).  Price £5 Click here to order.  Order Code  MP1458

HMS Tiger, March 1959.

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  XMP1459

Original republished © MPL Photograph (Postcard Size).  Price £5 Click here to order.  Order Code  MP1459

HMS Tiger, March 1959.

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  XMP1460

Original republished © MPL Photograph (Postcard Size).  Price £5 Click here to order.  Order Code  MP1460

HMS Tiger, June 1966.

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  XMP1461

Original republished © MPL Photograph (Postcard Size).  Price £5 Click here to order.  Order Code  MP1461

HMS Tiger, August 1972.

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  XMP1462

Original republished © MPL Photograph (Postcard Size).  Price £5 Click here to order.  Order Code  MP1462

HMS Tiger, September 1972.

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  XMP1463

Original republished © MPL Photograph (Postcard Size).  Price £5 Click here to order.  Order Code  MP1463

HMS Tiger, June 1977.

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  XMP1464

Original republished © MPL Photograph (Postcard Size).  Price £5 Click here to order.  Order Code  MP1464

ORIGINAL POSTCARD FOR SALE.  DONATED TOWARDS THE UPKEEP OF THIS SITE.

HMS Tiger.

Original  Postcard. Published by Gale & Polden. Price £12.  Click here to order.    Order Code PHC576

HMS Tiger with HMS Jupiter (F60, left), HMS Ariadne (F72, right) and an unknown submarine (front).  Viewed from RFA Green Rover, South Atlantic, April 1977.

Photographed by George Mortimore L.R.P.S  Copyright Cranston Fine Arts.  A reproduction of this original photo  size 10" x 7" approx available.  Order photograph here  . Order Code  GM049

HMS Tiger

ORIGINAL POSTCARD FOR SALE.  DONATED TOWARDS THE UPKEEP OF THIS SITE.

HMS Tiger

Original  Postcard. Publisher Details Unknown. Price £18  Click here to order.    Order Code PHC649

 
Thanks to "Stuart" who sent in the following information on this class: 

I think this section is not quite right. I'm sure that Defence was renamed Lion before completion. I know that Lion was disposed of at some point in the early 1970's, though exactly when I don't know.  Tiger and Blake were converted to Helicopter Cruisers. They had their after 6" turret removed and replaced by a hangar and flight deck for 2 Sea King or Wessex Mk 3 helicopters.  I remember sitting on a pontoon tied to HMS Tiger in Portsmouth Harbour in 1982, watching HMS Hermes come home from the Falklands War. I was on a sailing course with the Sea Cadets at HMS Excellent.  Tiger was, at the time, being kept in reserve there. I think she was sold for scrap in 1984.  HMS Blake was kept in reserve at Chatham from 1980 until shortly before the Dockyard closed in 1984, when she was sold for scrap.   Hope this is of some use.

 
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Tiger, Lion and Blake 1942-1986 - The Royal Navys Last Cruisers by Neil McCart


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