Audacious Class 1869

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AUDACIOUS CLASS IRONCLADS

The Audacious Class Central battery Ironclads consisted of HMS Audacious, Invincible, Iron Duke and Vanguard.  ordered under the naval programme  of 1867. these Ironnclads were designed for service on Foreign Stations.  similar to HMS Defence apart form having a shallow draught and modifications to layout.  

HMS Audacious was built at Glasgow by Napier. and laid down on the 26th June `867 being launched 27th February 1869  and was damaged while being launched in a gale. and completed 10th September 1870.   She was the first Royal Naval Iron Hulled Warship to be lighter than designed.  Taken form Napier's yard at Govan to Plymouth for completion. entered service in October 1870 as Guard ship at Kingstown. them being transferred to Hull in 1871 until 1874.  In 1874 re commissioned as Flagship for the \china station. damaged during a typhoon at Yokohama.  Relieved at the China Station by HMS Iron Duke returned to Chatham to be paid off. Became guard ship at Hull between 1878 and 1880/ went into refit in 1880 for new boilers to be fitted. returned to service in 12883.. returning to the China Station . In 1889 returned to Chatham for refit and in 1890  until 12894 served at Hull. went into reserve with the 4th fleet betwen 1894 and 1901. then converted into the training Hulk Fisgard at Portsmouth between 1902 and 1914. In  1914 was towed to Scapa Flow to be become receiving Hulk Imperious until end of world war One . and in 1919 moved to Rosyth to become receiving Hulk Victorious. until 1927. being sold on 15th march 1929.

HMS AUDACIOUS 27TH FEBRUARY 1869 HARBOUR SERVICE IN 1902, RENAMED FISGARD IN 1904, THEN IMPERIEUSE IN 1914. SOLD FOR SCRAP IN 1922.
HMS INVINCIBLE 29TH MAY 1869 BOMBARDED ALEXANDRIA.  RENAMED EREBUS IN 1904, THEN FISGARD II IN 1906. SANK WHILE ON TOW OFF PORTLAND ON 17TH SEPTEMBER 1914.
HMS IRON DUKE 1ST MARCH 1870 SOLD FOR SCRAP IN 1906.
HMS VANGUARD 3RD JANUARY 1870 SANK AFTER COLLIDING WITH IRON DUKE ON 1ST SEPTEMBER 1875.
HMS Audacious

HMS Audacious, 1870.

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HMS Invincible

HMS Invincible - Name History

The seventh ?INVINCIBLE? was a twin-screw 14-gun broadside ironclad, launched at Glasgow in 1869.  She was of 6010 tons, 4830 horse-power, and 14 knots speed.  Her length, beam, and draught were 280ft., 54ft., and 23ft.   In 1873 the ?Invincible,? commanded by Captain John Clark Soady, was one of a small squadron under Vice-Admiral Sir Hastings Yelverton, which proceeded to the Spanish coast and established a blockade of the Spanish Mediterranean littoral.  She assisted in the operations against the Spanish Intransigentes and prevented the insurgent ships from bombarding various coastal towns.  In 1879 the ?Invincible,? commanded by Captain Lindesay Brine, was one of a squadron of seven ships which occupied the island of Cyprus under Vice-Admiral Lord John Hay with his flag in ?Minotaur.?  In 1882 the ?Invincible,? took part in the Egyptian War.     In July 1882 the ?Invincible,? commanded by Captain Robert More Molyneux, lay at Alexandria in a fleet of 14 ships commanded by Admiral Sir Beauchamp Seymour with his flag in ?Alexandra.? The Egyptians having failed to surrender their forts, the Admiral transferred his flag to the lighter draught ship ?Invincible,? and on July 11th at 7a.m. the ?Alexandra? fired the first shot in bombardment of Alexandria.  The ?Invincible,? with two other ships, was stationed inside the harbour, and she fought at anchor with a spring on her cable.  All ships were cleared for action, topgallant masts being struck and bowsprits rigged in.  By 7.10 a.m. all ships were engaged, and all the forts that could bring their guns to bear replied with vigour.  By 5 p.m. all guns ashore had been silenced and the fleet ceased bombarding at 5:30 p.m.  The ?Invincible? had several dents on her armour, and was penetrated more than once outside it.  The British casualties were 5 killed and 28 wounded , to which the ?Invincible? contributed 6 wounded, including Midshipman Walter Lumsden.  The Egyptian loss has never been properly ascertained, but it is believed to have been about 150 killed and 400 wounded , out of the 200 men engaged in working the forts.  On July 13th the ?Invincible,? and other ships steamed into the harbour, and landed men who occupied and policed the town, Paymaster Stanton of this ship becoming the Head of the Commissariat.  On August 5th the ?Invincible? contributed to a Naval Brigade which left Alexandria in the armoured train which was commanded by Captain John Fisher, of the ?Inflexible.?  Commander Reginald F.H. Henderson, of the ?Invincible,? accompanied the brigade.  The marines were detrained about 800 yards from Mehallet Junction, and assisted by a 40-pounder Armstrong gun, quickly dislodged the enemy.  During the evening the brigade was exposed to a galling fire, but the marines behaved with great gallantry, and bore the brunt of the attack.  The casualties in this affair were 1 marine killed and 12 wounded, and 1 seaman killed and 4 wounded. The Naval Brigade were then recalled to their ships.  In 1885 the ?Invincible? contributed to a Naval Brigade which operated on the Nile, under Captain Lord Charles Beresford.  It took part in the battles of Abu Klea, Metemmeh, and Wad-Habeshi, and the relief of Sir Charles Wilson.  Captain Robert More Molyneux was rewarded with the C.B. for his services.  In 1904 this ship?s name was changed to ?Erebus.?  At a later date her name was changed again to ?Fisgard,? and she was merged into the establishment for the training of boy artificers in Portsmouth harbour. On September 16th, 1914, this ship foundered off Portland in a heavy gale.  She was being towed at the time, and 21 men were drowned out of the 64 on board. 

HMS Invincible, 1870.

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HMS Invincible with tug Manly.

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HMS Invincible with HMS Pallas and others, Malta, c1873.

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HMS Iron Duke

HMS Iron Duke - Name History

The first ?IRON DUKE? was a 10-gun twin-screw battleship of 6034 tons, launched at Pembroke in 1870.  She was of 4268 horse-power, which gave her a speed of 13.6 knots speed, and she carried a crew of 450 men.  Her length, beam, and draught were 280ft., 54ft., and 23ft.   In 1874 the ?Iron Duke,? commanded by Captain William Arthur and flying the flag of Vice-Admiral Sir Frederick Shadwell, with several small craft in company, appeared off the mouth of the Klang and Langkat Rivers.  Their object was to induce the Sultan of Selangor to give his word that he would make reparation for a series of piratical acts which had been committed by some of his subjects.  Sir Frederick Shadwell accompanied the Governor up the Klang River to Langkat, and induced the Sultan to take measures for the punishment of the pirates, and to agree to the destruction of certain stockades.  The ?Iron Duke? then withdrew.    On September 1st, 1875 the ?Iron Duke,? while commanded by Captain Henry B. Hickley, accidentally rammed and sank the ?Vanguard,?  Captain Richard Dawkins, off the Kish bank.  The accident occurred in foggy weather, but happily no lives were lost.  In 1896-97 the ?Iron Duke? was re-armed and re-rigged, but she saw no further service.  She was sold in 1906 for ?15,000. 

HMS Iron Duke, 1871.

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HMS Iron Duke, 1871.

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HMS Vanguard

HMS Vangurad, 1870.

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