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Has anyone gpt details of HMS Roberts, moniter that was based at Devonport during the war and until well into the 1950s:
 

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Hi David, (Wave)

H.M.S. ROBERTS. Displacement: 7973 tons standard and 9150 tons deep load. Speed: 12.5 Knots. Compliment: 442 / 460. Built by John Brown, on the Clyde, laid down on the 30th April 1940, Launched 1st February 1941, and completed 27th October 1941.

Armament: Taken from Marshall Ney

Two 15-inch Guns, Eight 4-inch 45 caliber QF AA guns in pairs and Sixteen 2 pounder Pom Pom (one of eight and two of Four guns).

Scrapped July 1965 at Inverkeithing.

Chris.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Hi Chris
Many thanks for this information, do you know if there are pictures of her about?
Again, my thanks
David
 

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Agree all your info Chris, except the source of the 15 inch guns.
In 1915 the Admiralty ordered two crazy monitors from Palmers. There was an extremely urgent need for the ships to support the seaward end of the front in France and after considering various options it was decided to divert two turrets from Ramillies. The turret mechanisim was so deep that the turret was mounted 17 feet above the deck. It was also decided to use diesel ,engines and divert the machinery from two fleet oilers, Trefoil and Turmoil. These were far too small for the job.
The first to complete was Marshall Ney, fitted with two 6 cylinder MAN engines. The trials were disastrous. The MAN diesels were very difficult to start and when she eventually moved off only managed a maximum speed of 6 knots, instead of the design speed of 9 knots. She was so slow that she was almost unmanageable in a tide. The second ship, Marshall Soult was fitted with 8 cylinder Vickers engines and was marginally better. They were reluctantly accepted into sevice but the unreliable machinery in Ney and appalling steering of both ships led to their rapid withdrawal.
The main turret was removed Ney in 1916 and used in the monitor Terror. It was the turret from Soult that was used in Roberts.

Fred
 

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Hms Roberts

fred henderson said:
Agree all your info Chris, except the source of the 15 inch guns.
In 1915 the Admiralty ordered two crazy monitors from Palmers. There was an extremely urgent need for the ships to support the seaward end of the front in France and after considering various options it was decided to divert two turrets from Ramillies. The turret mechanisim was so deep that the turret was mounted 17 feet above the deck. It was also decided to use diesel ,engines and divert the machinery from two fleet oilers, Trefoil and Turmoil. These were far too small for the job.
The first to complete was Marshall Ney, fitted with two 6 cylinder MAN engines. The trials were disastrous. The MAN diesels were very difficult to start and when she eventually moved off only managed a maximum speed of 6 knots, instead of the design speed of 9 knots. She was so slow that she was almost unmanageable in a tide. The second ship, Marshall Soult was fitted with 8 cylinder Vickers engines and was marginally better. They were reluctantly accepted into sevice but the unreliable machinery in Ney and appalling steering of both ships led to their rapid withdrawal.
The main turret was removed Ney in 1916 and used in the monitor Terror. It was the turret from Soult that was used in Roberts.

Fred
Fred,

I got the info off the following site when I was doing some research, it gave the Ney as the as the monitor the guns came from for Roberts.

http://www.battleships-cruisers.co.uk/roberts_class.htm

Regards

Chris.
 

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Santos said:
Fred,

I got the info off the following site when I was doing some research, it gave the Ney as the as the monitor the guns came from for Roberts.

http://www.battleships-cruisers.co.uk/roberts_class.htm

Regards

Chris.
That is a very interesting site Chris, but I think they are wrong about the source of the main turret for Roberts. If you look at the entry they have for Marshall Ney you will see a WW I photo of her without the turret.
My information is that she was stripped of her main armament at the end of 1916 and given a lighter armament for service as a guardship moored in the Downs to stop German destroyers raiding merchant shipping. She did a good job and was also used to fire at inbound Zepplins. At the end of the war she was towed back to Sheerness and all armament removed prior to disposal. She was retained as a depot ship however, firstly for MLs at Queenborough, then submarines at Fort Blockhouse and finally in 1922 at Devonport as Stoker Training Establishment for 35 years. During this time she was initially renamed Vivid, then Drake in 1934 and Alaunia II in 1947. She was eventually broken up in 1957.
All this ties in with Ney's 15 inch turret going to Terror. Soult retained her turret and was based at Chatham from 1924 until 1940, when her turret was removed for Roberts. Soult was then moved to Portsmouth to serve as a trawler depot ship until she was paid off in 1946.

Fred
 

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Fred,

I accept what you say, you are probably right. I have found by bitter experience that these sites often contain duff info and conjecture rather than fact. I dont think its intended most of the time, I think its entered in good faith but not double checked as to factual correctness.

Chris.
 

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Santos said:
Fred,

I accept what you say, you are probably right. I have found by bitter experience that these sites often contain duff info and conjecture rather than fact. I dont think its intended most of the time, I think its entered in good faith but not double checked as to factual correctness.

Chris.
Agree with your comments on web sites. My information comes from my Jane's of the period plus the wonderful Conway's All the World's Fighting Ships.

Fred
 

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I actually whent aboard the Roberts in the mid fifties at Portsmouth. I stood beneath the guns but could not gain entrance to the turret, it was locked up tight.
 

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an excellent book on monitors - Big Gun Monitors by Ian Buxton - an updated edition published last year. Full and authentic details.
 

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In 1964 whilst refitting HMS Ashanti at Devonport, we were victualled in HMS Drake and our crew occupied the huts at the bottom of Drake, down by the mudflats. I used to wake up every morning, usually with a gigongerous hangover, grab a warm bottle of milk from the top of my locker, take a swig then turn over and gaze down the barrels of the Roberts. A very impressive sight, useless but good to look at.
 

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This is the info I have on the Roberts class ships, and I have seen some of this info in Conways 1922-46 which is usually a very reliable source.
The 15" turrets in the two ships were sourced from the WW1 Erebus class ship Marshal Sult for the Roberts whilst that fitted in the Abercrombie was a standy turret for the large light cruiser Furious if her 18" single turrets were failures as it happened the Furious had her forwrd turret removed and replaced with a flying off platform in the first of her guises as an early carrier so the 15" turret was never needed. Both turrets were identical Mk1 types fitted with Mk1 15" C42 rifles firing the 1920 lb shell, both turrets were modified for the 30 degree elevation giving them a range of 32,000 yards - 15 miles before being fitted in the new ships.
Roberts, P. No F40, was built by John Browns yard on the Clyde Laid down 30th April 1940, launched 01st Feb 1940 and commissioned 27th October 1941
Post war she became a gunnery traing ship then an accommodation ship and was scrapped at barrow in 1954
whilst Abercrombie, P.No. F109, was built by Vickers-Armstrong on the River Tyne Laid down on the 26th April 1941, launched 31st March 1942 and commissioned 05th May 1943. post war she became a gunnery training ship until 1956 then an accomodation ship until 1963 and in 1965 was scraped at Inverkeithing.

L 373'04" B 89'09" Draft Roberts : 13'06" Abercrombie 14'06" Disp Standard R = 7973 tons A = 8536 tons Full load R = 9,150 tons A = 9,717 tons
Machinery : Twin screws, Parsons geared turbines, 4,800 SHP supplied with steam by 2 admiralty type 3 drum boilers, Max speed was 13.5 knots for the Roberts and 12 knots for the Abercrombie due to her deeper draft/ higher disp.
Bunker oil 491 tons of oil giving a range of 2,800 miles at 12 knots
Armament : two 15" C42 Mk1 guns in Mk1 30 degree elevation turrets firing a 1920 lb shell with 432 lbs of C45 cordite in four bagged quarter charges, Range 32,000 yards, 110 rounds per gun carried.
Secondary batteries : eight 4" C45 Mk16 guns in four twin turrets firing a 25lb shell to about 20,000 yards - an example of these guns can be seen on HMS Belfast. One octuple and two quadruple 2 pounder pompoms ( actually fired a shell of a little over 1.8 pounds). During the war a further eight twin and four single 20mm Oerlikons were added to Abercrombie with Roberts receiving six twin and twelve single 20mm Oerlikons.

Armour : Belt 5 to 6" , Decks 4" Turrets: faces 13", sides 11", rear 11" and roofs 6", Barbettes 8", Control tower 3"
Radar sets AW281 and 285
Crews A 460 R 442
Although seen as ugly and ungaily Roberts was hit by two 1,000 lb bombs both were defelcted by her armour. Roberts on two occasions hit moored contact mines, on the latter hitting two at once, she survived both but it did lessen her wartime activities until repaired.
Both ships served for shore bombardment first in the Med then Normandy plans to send them to the Pacific to bombard Japanese shore positions - a role they were excellent at, was cancelled by the end of the war in the far east, it was for this reason the extra 20mm Oerlikons were fitted.
All told these ships were very well armoured and very well defended against air attack.
 

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