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Naval history of the Torpedo Boat Destroyers including HMS Sturgeon, HMS Daring, HMS Ardent and the unique Torpedo Boat Depot Ship HMS Vulcan.

Click below to view galleries:

Vulcan ] HMS Sturgeon ] HMS Polyphemus ]

PL198 -  A Royal Navy Motor Launch  strangely numbered PL198 and not the normal ML198.

A reproduction of this original photo / photo-postcard size 10" x 7" approx available.  Order photograph here  © Walker Archive. Order Code PHX296

HMS Turbinia built by C A Parsons she was a prototype of the torpedo boat destroyers. She is pictured on the Seine in front of the building which was devoted to the the Land and Sea Armaments of the Paris Exhibition c.1900.

A second-class torpedo boat such as was carried by the large ships of the Royal Navy in the early 1900's.

Crew of a Torpedo Boat

A reproduction of this original photo / photo-postcard size 10" x 7" approx available.  Order photograph here  © Walker Archive. Order Code PHX297

Torpedo Boats on the Thames.  Sent in by Alan Loose

A torpedo boat destroyer in the early 1900's.

Torpedo Boat c. 1904. 

A reproduction of this original photo / photo-postcard size 10" x 7" approx available.  Order photograph here  © Walker Archive. Order Code PHX298

Torpedo Boat No 110 

A reproduction of this original photo / photo-postcard size 10" x 7" approx available.  Order photograph here  © Walker Archive. Order Code PHX299

HMS Kestrel a torpedo boat in Vancouver Harbour, British Columbia.  

A reproduction of this original photo / photo-postcard size 10" x 7" approx available.  Order photograph here  © Walker Archive. Order Code PHX300

HMS Albacore.

A reproduction of this original photo / photo-postcard size 10" x 7" approx available.  Order photograph here  © Walker Archive. Order Code PHX494

The wreck of the coastal Motor Boat CMB33A, 13th April 1918. The Motor Torpedo Boat was damaged by shore batteries at Eylau during an attack on Ostende. the crew were drowned after abandoning the wreck. and it drifted ashore and fell into German hands.  (thanks to Fred Cory for the info)

The Motor Launch ML481. Launched sometime in 1915/16. Transferred to the French Navy. 

A reproduction of this original photo / photo-postcard size 10" x 7" approx available.  Order photograph here  © Walker Archive. Order Code PHX301

The Motor Launch ML473. Launched sometime in 1915/16. Transferred to the French Navy.

A reproduction of this original photo / photo-postcard size 10" x 7" approx available.  Order photograph here  © Walker Archive. Order Code PHX302

Torpedo Boat 6

A reproduction of this original photo / photo-postcard size 10" x 7" approx available.  Order photograph here  © Walker Archive. Order Code PHX303

Many of the Torpedo Boat destroyers listed below are also listed under  destroyers as the early years they were classed the same 
Ships Name Launch Date Fate
HMS Havock 12th August 1893  Sold 1911 and Broken up in 1912.
HMS Hornet 23rd December 1893 Broken up in 1909.

Daring Class.   Built by Thornycroft,             View Class

HMS Daring 25th November 1893 Broken up in 1912.
HMS Decoy 2nd February 1894 Collided with another vessel in 1904.

Ardent Class  Built by Thornycroft                 View Class

HMS Ardent 16th October 1894 Broken up in 1911.
HMS Boxer 28th November 1894 Collided with another vessel in 1918.
HMS Bruiser 27th February 1895 Broken up in 1914.

Charger Class                         View Class

HMS Charger 15th September 1894 Broken up in 1912.
HMS Dasher 28th November 1894 Broken up in 1912.
HMS Hasty 16th June 1894 Broken up in 1912.

Haughty Class               View Class

HMS Hardy 16th December 1895 Broken up in 1911.
HMS Haughty 18th September 1895 Broken up in 1911.

Janus Class

HMS Janus 12th March 1895 Broken up in 1914.
HMS Lightning 10th April 1895 Mined in 1915.
HMS Porcupine 19th September 1895 Broken up in 1920.
Snapper Class
HMS Salmon 15th January 1895 Broken up in 1912.
HMS Snapper 30th January 1895 Broken up in 1912.
Banshee Class                 View Class
HMS Banshee 17th November 1894 Broken up in 1912.
HMS Contest 1st December 1894 Broken up in 1911.
HMS Dragon 15th December 1894 Broken up in 1912.
HMS Ferret  1893 Sold and Broken up 1911
HMS Lynz 1894 Sold and Broken up 1912
Fervent Class                 View Class
HMS Fervent 20th March 1895 Broken up in 1920.
HMS Zephyr 10th May 1895 Broken up in 1920.
Conflict Class                       View Class
HMS Conflict 13th December 1894 Broken up in 1920.
HMS Teazer 9th February 1895 Broken up in 1912.
HMS Wizard 26th February 1895 Broken up in 1920.
Cricket Class Coastal Destroyers
HMS Cricket 23rd January 1906 Sold for scrapping in 1920.
HMS Dragonfly 11th March 1906 Sold for scrapping in 1920.
HMS Firefly 1st September 1906 Sold for scrapping in 1920.
HMS Sandfly 30th October 1906 Sold for scrapping in 1920.

             

Two photos of a beached torpedo boat, suspected to be HMS Sandfly.  

HMS Spider 15th December 1906 Sold for scrapping in 1920.
HMS Gadfly 24th June 1906 Sold for scrapping in 1920.

HMS Gadfly.

Contributed by Trevor Piper.  © Vosper Thornycroft

HMS Glowworm 20th December 1906 Sold for scrapping in 1921.
HMS Gnat 1st December 1906 Sold for scrapping in 1921.
HMS Grasshopper 18th March 1907 Sunk in a collision with another vessel.

HMS Grasshopper - Name History

The sixth “Grasshopper” was a turbine coastel destroyer, launched at Thorneycroft’s Yard in 1907.  She was of 215 tons, 3750 horse- power, and 26 knots speed.  Her length, beam, and draught were 166ft., 17ft., and 6ft.  Before completion this vessel was given a number, and called torpedo boat No.9.

HMS Greenfly 15th February 1907 Mined and sunk on 10th June 1915.
HMS Mayfly 29th January 1907 Mined and dunk on 7th March 19016.
HMS Moth 15th March 1907 Mined and sunk on 10th June 1915.
TB13 10th July 1907 Sunk after colliding with another vessel on 26th January 1916.
TB14 26th September 1907 Sold for scrapping in 1920.
TB15 19th November 1907 Sold for scrapping in 1920.
TB16 23rd December 1907 Sold for scrapping in 1920.
TB17 21st December 1907 Sold for scrapping in 1919.
TB18 15th February 1908 Paid off in Gibraltar and sold in 1920. She ended her days as a boat running eggs between Morocco and Gibraltar. (Information from Mike Reeve)
My grandfather Arthur Reeve was an Engine Room artificer on TB18 'sub hunting in the Adriatic'. I know that she was at the fire in Salonica as my grandfather says the engineers went ashore to help restore services. He was present when LZ85 was destroyed and had a piece of it as a souvenir. He claimed it had been brought down by TB18's guns but that HMS Agammenon signalled to hold back on the claim and effectively took the credit. I'd like to find out more about this. After she was sold off, the crew got home on a leaky tug which was in great danger of sinking. If you know about the LZ85 story contact me at reeve.mjr@lineone.net 

Thanks to Mike Reeve for this story.

TB19 7th December 1907 Sold for scrapping in 1921.
TB20 21st January 1908 Sold for scrapping in 1921.

Torpedo Boat 20.  Submitted by email

TB21 20th December 1907 Sold for scrapping in 1920.
TB22 1st February 1908 Sold for scrapping in 1920.
TB23 5th December 1907 Sold for scrapping in 1921.

Torpedo boat No.23 in 1902. She measured 113 ft in length with a displacement of 67 tons and a speed of 19 knots.

TB24 19th March 1908 Sunk after colliding with another vessel on 28th January 1917.
TB25 28th August 1908 Sold for scrapping in 1921.
TB26 28th August 1908 Sold for scrapping in 1921.
TB27 29th September 1908 Sold for scrapping in 1921.
TB28 29th October 1908 Sold for scrapping in 1921.
TB29 29th September 1908 Sold for scrapping in 1919.
TB30 29th September 1908 Sold for scrapping in 1919.
TB31 10th October 1908 Sold for scrapping in 1921.
TB32 23rd November 1908 Sold for scrapping in 1921.
TB33 22nd September 1909 Sold for scrapping in 1922.
TB34 22nd September 1909 Sold for scrapping in 1922.

Crew of Torpedo Boat TB34.

A reproduction of this original photo / photo-postcard size 10" x 7" approx available.  Order photograph here  © Walker Archive. Order Code PHX304

TB35 19th April 1909 Sold for scrapping in 1922.
TB36 6th May 1909 Sold for scrapping in 1921.

Torpedo Boat No.83 pictured pre 1896.

A reproduction of this original photo / photo-postcard size 10" x 7" approx available.  Order photograph here  © Walker Archive. Order Code PHX305

HMTB No.72

A reproduction of this original photo / photo-postcard size 10" x 7" approx available.  Order photograph here  © Walker Archive. Order Code PHX372

 
 

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AVIATION PRINTS

Click above to see all of our aviation art index - Eight random half price aviation items are displayed to the right.

Some Current Half Price Aviation Art Offers

 B-17G 42-37755 NV-A 325th Bomb Squadron, 92nd Bomb Group from Poddington crash landing in Switzerland on 25th February 1944 after sustaining damage over enemy territory after a raid on Augsburg and Stuttgart.

Safe Pastures by Mark Postlethwaite. (Y)
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 Jaguar GR3A from 41 (Fighter) Squadron based at RAF Coltishall and flown by Squadron Leader Ian Smith thunders down a Norwegian fjord.  Coltishall Jaguars regularly deploy on exercise in northern Norway as part of NATO's protection of its northern flank.  However, Spring of 2006 saw the closure of RAF Coltishall, the loss of an historic airfield.

Snowcat by Robert Tomlin. (Y)
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 Depicting the No.19 Sqn Spitfire Mk.IIA of Flt Lt Walter Lawson attacking a a Bf.109 E-4 of JG.3 in the Summer of 1940. The final tally of Lawson before he was listed as missing in August 1941 was 6 confirmed, 1 shared, 3 probables and 1 damaged.  The Bf.109 shown here was flown by Oberleutnant Franz von Werra. He survived this encounter, but was shot down over Kent in September 1940.

Flt Lt Walter Lawson by Ivan Berryman. (B)
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 Harrier GR3s of No. 1 squadron in a secluded hide following a field exercise. The unique vertical take off capabilities of the Harrier allow front-line squadrons to deploy from dispersed sites.

GR3 Field Trip by Stuart Brown. (Y)
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 Spitfire of 610 Squadron which has been damaged during combat during the height of the Battle of Britain is shown over the white cliffs of Dover.  No. 610 (County of Chester) Squadron of the Royal Auxiliary Air Force's first major combat with the Luftwaffe was on 27th May when a Heinkel bomber protected by about 40 Me110s, was engaged.  The combat which followed saw the Heinkel and three Me110 fighters being shot down.  Throughout August 610 Squadron was involved in bitter fighting over the Channel and Home Counties of England.  During the Battle of Britain No.610 Squadron operated from Biggin Hill, Hawkinge, and, on one occasion, from Croydon.  The Squadron put up a terrific show and 40 enemy aircraft were confirmed as having been destroyed by 610 Squadron during August.  The loss to the Squadron was eleven pilots killed during the battle.

Return of the Heroes by Ivan Berryman.
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DHM683.  Alouette III Helicopter of Rhodesian Fireforce 1979 by John Wynne Hopkins.

Alouette III Helicopter of Rhodesian Fireforce 1979 by John Wynne Hopkins.
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 The Hawker Hurricane powered by the powerful Rolls Royce Merlin engine is shown in combat with Luftwaffe aircraft during the Battle of Britain. The Hurricane played a major role in the aerial victory along with its companion the Spitfire.

Merlin Roar by Anthony Saunders. (F)
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  A Vought A-7 Corsair of VA-146 makes its  final approach to the sprawling deck of the USS America, (CVA-66) as she skirts Vietnamese waters in company with a little Rock-class missile / command cruiser. The A-7 became the Navys prime weapon toward the end of the war, playing a vital role in the anti-radiation Linebacker Raids.

USS America by Ivan Berryman (P)
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NAVAL PRINTS

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Some Current Half Price Naval Art Offers

 HMS Thrasher returning from patrol off Crete in March 1942.

HMS/M Thrasher by John Pettitt. (Y)
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 Spearheading the Falklands Task Force as it heads south in 1982, the carrier HMS Hermes is shown in company with two Type 21 frigates, HMS Arrow on the left and HMS Ardent in the near foreground.  In the far distance, HMS Glamorgan glints in the sun as Type 42 HMS Sheffield cuts across behind Hermes.

HMS Hermes by Ivan Berryman.
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 HMS Broadsword and the aircraft carrier Hermes battle their way through the storm on their way to the Battle for the Falklands.

Storm Force to the Falklands by Anthony Saunders (Y)
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 Wearing her unusual black and white disruptive colour scheme, HMS Repulse is pictured as part of Force Z in company with HMS Prince of Wales and the destroyer Vampire. These two mighty battleships were to be lost within hours of each other, the victims of intense Japanese air strikes. Vampire and the destroyer Electra were on hand to pick up survivors from both ships.

HMS Repulse by Ivan Berryman. (Y)
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B64AP.  HMS Centaur Departing Devonport by Ivan Berryman.

HMS Centaur Departing Devonport by Ivan Berryman (AP)
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 Type 21 frigate HMS Ambuscade (F172) is shown passing the swing bridge as she enters Taranto Harbour.

HMS Ambuscade by Ivan Berryman (AP)
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 The Japanese ship Takao at Flank speed, riding shotgun for the carrier

Flank Speed by Randall Wilson.
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 The lead ship of the Royal Navy's Vanguard Class SSBNs, HMS Vanguard (S28) was commissioned on 14th August 1993 and is based at HMNB Clyde at Faslane.

HMS Vanguard in the Gareloch by Ivan Berryman. (P)
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MILITARY PRINTS

Click above to see all of our military art index - Eight random half price military items are displayed to the right.

Some Current Half Price Military Art Offers

In 1895, Leander Starr Jameson assembled a private army outside the Transvaal with the aim of invading and overthrowing the Boer government.  The idea had been to encourage civil unrest among foreign workers (Uitlanders), and use the outbreak of open revolt as an excuse to invade and take over the territory.  But Jameson grew impatient and so launched the Jameson Raid on 29th December 1895, and managed to push within twenty miles of Johannesburg before superior Boer forces compelled him and his men to surrender at Doornkop on the 2nd of Janaury 1896.
Jameson's Last Stand, Battle of Doornkop 2nd January 1896 by Richard Caton Woodville
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DHM500.  Brunswick Hussar, Quatre Bras 16th June 1815 by Brian Palmer.

Brunswick Hussar, Quatre Bras 16th June 1815 by Brian Palmer.
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Confederate cavalry with the battle flag of the Confederacy gallop into battle.  The battle flag was also known as the Southern Cross.

Southern Steel by Simon Smith.
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Terence Cuneo has depicted a scene of street violence.  The angry mod hurls abuse, missiles and petrol bombs at the soldiers who are outnumbered and restricted in their ability to repsond.  Rioting of this sort became less prevalent through the increased efficiency of the Police and Army in containing it, but Terence Cuneos reconstruction typifies the dangerous situation the secuirty forces in Ulster faced during the 1970s.  Published in 1977 by the Army and Navy Club, Pall Mall, London.

The Tragedy of Ulster 1976 by Terence Cuneo. (B)
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 Troops of the 1st Hampshires assaulting Gold Beach during the Normandy Landings. Gold beach was one of the British beaches on D-Day. Gold beach was the western most beach of the British beaches, on D-Day. Gold beach was between two twenty metre high cliffs where German fortifications had been built. The beach had been protected by concrete casemates which took some time to break through. This happened with support form British tanks in the afternoon of D-day 6th June. The British tanks and reinforcements moved off the beaches towards Saint-Come-de-Fresene and Arromanches which were both liberated by 9pm.

D-Day Gold Beach, 6th June 1944 by Simon Smith. (AP)
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DHM594P.  17th Light Dragoons, 1780 by Jim Lancia.
17th Light Dragoons, 1780 by Jim Lancia. (P)
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 Goch-Gennep, Germany, 9th February 1945.  The Sturmgeschutz III of Leutnant Heinz Deutsch, Stug-Brigade XII, and paratroops of 7th Fallschirmjager Division counterattacking the Allied advance into the Reichswald forest in the final months of the war.  The small Stug brigade numbering at its peak only 30 assault guns was responsible for the destruction of 250 allied tanks, Deutsch's gun claiming 44 of that total.

Defenders of the Reichswald by David Pentland. (P)
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 AH-1 Whiskey Cobras of the US marine Corps in Action, Kuwait, February 1991.

Cobra Attack by David Rowlands. (Y)
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SPORT PRINTS

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Some Current Half Price Sport Art Offers

B43. Damon Hill/ Williams Renault FW.18 by Ivan Berryman

Damon Hill/ Williams Renault FW.18 by Ivan Berryman
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 Martin strikes again with this portrait of Nigel Mansell OBE walking, perhaps to the pits, or away from the race track, characteristiclly with his hand to his forehead.  Maybe hes planning his strategy for the day or is just plain frustrated.
A Hard Day at the Office by Martin Smith.
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 M. Schumacher / JP Montoya.  Brazilian GP 2001.

Close Encounters by Michael Thompson.
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 Jacques Villeneuve.

The Maple Leaf Maestro by Stuart Coffield
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SFA19.  Laytown Beach by Chris Howells.
Laytown Beach by Chris Howells.
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FAR635. Muirfield - 13th Hole by Mark Chadwick

Muirfield - 13th Hole by Mark Chadwick
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 A product of United's magnificent youth policy, Nicky Butt has become an invaluable player in the most successful side in the club's history.  Gary Keane's portrayal of Nicky Butt captures the tenacity, determination and power of one of the country's leading midfield players.

Nicky Butt by Gary Keane.
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Jason Leonard by Robert Highton. (Y)
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