Repulse Class

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Battlecruiser histories. Royal naval battlecruisers HMS Repulse and HMS Renown. Battlecruiser website dedicated to the history of HMS Repulse and HMS Renown from their launch to their participation in major wars also notice board for families of ex-crew of HMS Repulse and HMS Renown.

HMS Repulse was built at Clydebank by John Brown, and launched on 8th January 1916 . She saw action in the First World war on the 17 November 1917 at Heligoland Bight (a sortie by British battlecruisers.). During World War Two. She operated off Norway in 1940, and on Convoy duty until the summer of 1941. Repulse joined the eastern Fleet in October 1941, arriving at Singapore on the 2nd of December, she sailed with HMS Prince of Wales and four destroyers to attack Japanese naval forces in their landing areas around Malaya. On the 10th December both the repulse and Prince of Wales were attacked by 80 Japanese aircraft and were sunk, HMS Repulse being hit by a Torpedo and sunk at 1233 hours, after being hit by a further 4 hits.

HMS Renown was a Battle cruiser built at Fairfield and re engined at Cammell Laird. she was launched on the 4th march 1916. Between the wars HMS Renown has a major refit at Portsmouth in May 1923 to August 1926. She had her belt armour increased, (using the plate armour intended for the Chilean battleship Almirante Cochrane). Her horizontal armour was increased from 1-inch to 1.5 inch.

HMS Renown served in all major theatres during world war two. During September 1939 she served in the north sea and during October 1939 took part in the search for the German surface raiders Admiral Graf Spee and Deutschland. During August 1940 the renown exchanged fire with the German Battle Cruisers Gneisenau and Scharnhorst  but only received slight damage. During the rest of 1940and 1941  HMS Renown served with Force H. Renown also took part in the pursuit of the Bismarck, during May 1941. During November 1942 she supported the Allied Landing in North Africa.  During early 1944 HMS Renown joined the British eastern Fleet supporting the carrier raids, and also the bombarding of Surabaya.  At Durban she had a refit and then returned to home water in March 1945.  Due to her poor condition HMS renown was put into reserve and was finally scrapped at Faslane, Scotland on August 1948. (Above left photograph is of Renown in the lock at the Panama Canal).


HMS Renown or HMS Repulse photographed end of 1916.

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