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by Lt Cdr Geoffrey B Mason RN (Rtd) (c) 2004

HMS  CARADOC - World War 1 C-type Light Cruiser
including Convoy Escort Movements

Edited by Gordon Smith, Naval-History.Net

HMS Caradoc  (Navy Photos/Mark Teadham,, click to enlarge)

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CALEDON-Class Cruiser ordered from Scotts of Greenock on 8th December 1915 and laid down on 21st February 1916. She was launched on 23rd December that year as the second Royal Navy ship to carry this name, first used in 1847 for an Iron Paddle Gunboat and was the English name for Caractacus, a knight of the Round Table. Build was completed† on† 16th June 1917. Following a successful WARSHIP WEEK National Savings campaign in March 1942 she was adopted by the civil community of the City of Chester.


B a t t l e†† H o n o u r s


BLACK SEA 1854-55 - ATLANTIC 1940


H e r a l d i c†† D a t a

Badge: † On a Field Black, a beast genus unknown, gold.



S u m m a r y   o f   P r e - War   S e r v i c e


1 9 1 7

May††††††††††††††††††††††† Contractors trials.

June††††††††††††††††††††††† Commissioned.

††††††††††††††† 16th††††††† Build completion and commenced Acceptance Trials.

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† On completion of trials and storing took passage to join Grand Fleet at Scapa

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† Flow for work-up prior to operational use.

July†††††††††††††††††††††††† Deployed at Scapa Flow with Grand Fleet.

August††††††††††††††††† During Grand Fleet deployment grounded at Fair Isle.

September†††††††††††† Resumed Grand Fleet service.



1 9 1 8

January††††††††††††††††† Deployed with Grand Fleet.



November††††††††††††† Nominated for service in Baltic in support of defence of countries under

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† threat from Bolshevik forces.

††††††††††††††† 11th††††††† Germany agreed to an Armistice.

††††††††††††††† 21st†††††††† German High Seas fleet surrendered.

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† Passage to Baltic

December††††††††††††† Deployed with HM Cruiser CALYPSO in Gulf of Finland and provided

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† gunfire support for Estonian troops under attack by Bolshevik forces.

††††††††††††††† 26th††††††† Took part in capture of Russian destroyers AVTROIL and SPARTAK off

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† Revel with HMS CALYPSO, HM Destroyers VENDETTA, VORTIGERN

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† and WAKEFUL.

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† (Note: The Russian ships surrendered without returning fire.)

1 9 1 9

January††††††††††††††††† Passage to UK on relief by 1st Light Cruiser Squadron.

February††††††††††††††† Nominated for service with 3rd Light Cruiser Squadron and took passage to

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† join Mediterranean Fleet.

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† (Note: HM Cruisers CARDIFF and CALYPSO were in LCS3.)

March††††††††††††††††††† Deployed with Squadron in Mediterranean

to††††††††††††††††††††††††††† (Note: During this period ships of the Mediterranean Fleet carried out

December††††††††††††† duties as Guardship to safeguard British interests during unrest

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† in Turkey and Greece.)

1 9 2 0††† t o††† 1 9 2 2

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† Mediterranean Fleet deployment with Squadron in continuation

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† Recommissioned for further service in 3rd Light Cruiser Squadron.

1 9 2 4††† t o††† 1 9 2 5

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† Deployed with Squadron in Mediterranean

1 9 2 6

January††††††††††††††††† Mediterranean Fleet service in continuation.

to††††††††††††††††††††††††††† Nominated for transfer to China Station.

November††††††††††††† (Note: The number of British warships on the Station was increased after

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† outbreak of civil war in China in order to protect British commercial

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† interests in the area.)

December††††††††††††† Passage Singapore and Hong Kong.

1 9 2 7

January††††††††††††††††† Deployed on China Station

to††††††††††††††††††††††††††† Nominated for return to UK to recommission after refit.


July†††††††††††††††††††††††† Passage to Mediterranean via Red Sea.

August††††††††††††††††† Passage from Gibraltar to Sheerness.

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† De-ammunitioned prior to refit..

September†††††††††††† Arrived at Chatham.

††††††††††††††† 19th††††††† Paid off and taken in hand for refit by HM Dockyard, Chatham

October††††††††††††††††† Under refit.



1 9 2 8

January††††††††††††††††† Under refit



August††††††††††††††††† Refit in continuation.

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† Nominated for service with 8th Cruiser Squadron on the America and

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† West Indies Station as relief for HM Cruiser DAUNTLESS.

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† (Note: HMS DAUNTLESS had been badly damaged after running aground

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† off Halifax, NS on 2nd July.)

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† Recommissioned for service.

September†††††††††††† Refit completion and storing for foreign service.

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† Passage to Portsmouth

October††††††††††††††††† Prepared for foreign service.

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† Took passage from Portsmouth for Bermuda to join Squadron.

November††††††††††††† Deployed with Squadron for exercises and visits programme.



1 9 2 9

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† Deployment on West Indies Station in continuation.

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† (Note: Ships in Squadron visited ports in West Indies, South America

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† and on West ands East coasts of North America.

1 9 3 0

January††††††††††††††††† Squadron deployment in West Indies in continuation.

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† Nominated for return to UK on relief by HMS DAUNTLESS.

February††††††††††††††† Passage to Portsmouth to pay off.

††††††††††††††† 15th††††††† Arrived at Portsmouth and prepared for reduction to Reserve status.

March††††††††††††††††††† Passage to Devonport

April†††††††††††††††††††††† Laid-up in Reserve Fleet at Devonport.

to††††††††††††††††††††††††††† Nominated for service with 5th Cruiser Squadron in China Station.


July†††††††††††††††††††††††† Prepared for operational service.

††††††††††††††† 15th††††††† Recommissioned.

August††††††††††††††††† Shakedown and exercises before passage to Singapore,

September†††††††††††† Passage to join Squadron.



November††††††††††††† Joined Squadron and deployed for protection of British interests and

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† exercises with ships on Station.

December††††††††††††† China Station deployment with Squadron in continuation.

1 9 3 1††† t o††† 1 9 3 3

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† Deployed with Squadron on China Station.

1 9 3 4

January††††††††††††††††† Squadron deployment on China Station in continuation



August††††††††††††††††† Nominated for return to UK to pay-off and refit.

September†††††††††††† Passage to Sheerness.

October††††††††††††††††† Paid off on arrival after de-ammunitioning.

††††††††††††††† 17th††††††† Reduced to Reserve status and destored.


November††††††††††††† Laid-up in Reserve.



1 9 3 5††† t o††† 1 9 3 6

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† Laid-up in Reserve.

1 9 3 7

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† Under refit

1 9 3 8

January††††††††††††††††† Under refit.

to††††††††††††††††††††††††††† Nominated for service in Reserve Fleet at Devonport for use as a

June††††††††††††††††††††††† Boys Training Ship

July†††††††††††††††††††††††† On completion of refit carried out post refit trials.


††††††††††††††† 12th††††††† Deployed in Reserve Fleet, Devonport as Boys Training Ship

September†††††††††††† Training duties at Devonport in continuation.



1 9 3 9

January††††††††††††††††† Training duties at Devonport in continuation.

to††††††††††††††††††††††††††† Nominated for attendance at Review of Reserve Fleet by HM King

July†††††††††††††††††††††††† George VI in Weymouth Bay.

August††††††††††††††††† Commissioned with Reservists for Royal Review and deployed as

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† Flagship in 11th Cruiser Squadron.

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† Carried out trials before passage to Weymouth Bay for Review.

††††††††††††††† 9th††††††††† Attended Royal Review and remained in commission for war service.

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† Took up War Station with Channel Force based at Portland.


D e t a i l s††† o f††† W a r††† S e r v i c e


(for more ship information, go to Naval History Homepage and type name in Site Search



September†††††††††††† Deployed at Portland.

††††††††††††††† 11th††††††† Provided cover for passage of military convoys to France carrying BEF.

††††††††††††††† 14th††††††† Deployed at Plymouth in continuation.

††††††††††††††† 23rd††††††† Returned to Plymouth after machinery defects.

††††††††††††††† 25th††††††† Taken in hand for repair by HM Dockyard Devonport.

October††††††††††††††††† Nominated for trade defence and interception of blockade runners with

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† America and West Indies Squadron.

††††††††††††††† 7th††††††††† Took passage from Plymouth for detached service in West Indies.

††††††††††††††† 12th††††††† Joined HM Battleship REVENGE as escort for HM Cruisers EMERALD

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† and ENTERPRISE during passage to Halifax.

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† (Note: The cruisers were taking gold bullion to Canada for safe custody.)

††††††††††††††† 17th††††††† Arrived at Halifax.

††††††††††††††† 18th††††††† Took passage from Halifax to join 8th Cruiser Squadron in Bermuda..

††††††††††††††† 20th††††††† Arrived at Bermuda and sailed after briefing for interception patrol.

††††††††††††††† 23rd††††††† Intercepted German tanker EMY FRIEDRICH after sighting report by HM

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† Cruiser ORION and HM Destroyer SAGUENAY (RCN).

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† (Note: German ship was on passage from Tampico.)

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† Enemy ship scuttled on approach.

††††††††††††††† 27th††††††† Returned to Bermuda from patrol with defects.

November††††††††††††† Repair arranged at RCN dockyard, Esquimalt.

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† Passage to Panama Canal with call at Kingston, Jamaica.

††††††††††††††† 20th††††††† Arrived at Esquimalt after Panama Canal transit.

December††††††††††††† Under repair.

1 9 4 0

January††††††††††††††††† Under repair




††††††††††††††† 15th††††††† Carried out post repair trials and on completion took passage to resume

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† Squadron duties.

May††††††††††††††††††††††† Deployed in Pacific and West Indies for interception of blockade runners

to††††††††††††††††††††††††††† and commerce raiders.


November††††††††††††† Deployed in Caribbean area.

††††††††††††††† 11th††††††† Intercepted German blockade runner RHEIM in Straits of Florida.

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† Enemy ship set on fire in order to prevent boarding after being challenged.

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† Drifting hulk sunk by gunfire after crew abandoned ship.†††††††††††††††††††††††††††

December††††††††††††† Squadron duties in West Indies in continuation.

1 9 4 1

January††††††††††††††††† Squadron duties for patrol and interception in continuation.

to††††††††††††††††††††††††††† Nominated for refit by US Navy Yard, Brooklyn, New York.


October††††††††††††††††† Passage to New York from Bermuda.

††††††††††††††† 28th††††††† Taken in hand for refit.

November††††††††††††† Under Refit

to††††††††††††††††††††††††††† (Note: Close range AA defence was supplemented by fit of five 20mm

December††††††††††††† Oerlikon guns and preparation for fit of radar was carried out.)

1 9 4 2

January††††††††††††††††† Under refit.


††††††††††††††† 26th††††††† On completion carried out post refit trials and shakedown for Atlantic

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† passage.

March††††††††††††††††††† Passage to Portsmouth for completion of radar installation.

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† (Note: Type 286 an RAF Air-Surface radar for aircraft use which gave

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† limited surface and air cover was fitted. For details of development

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† and use of radar by RN see RADAR AT SEA by D Howse.)

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† Nominated for service in 5th Cruiser Squadron, Eastern Fleet.

April†††††††††††††††††††††† Passage to Scapa Flow to work-up with ships of Home Fleet.

May††††††††††††††††††††††† On completion of work-up took passage top join Squadron.

June††††††††††††††††††††††† Retained for convoy defence at Gibraltar.

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† (Note: Support of relief convoy to Malta had reduced number of ships

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† available for Atlantic service at Gibraltar.

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† Not deployed for Operation HARPOON.)

July†††††††††††††††††††††††† Deployed at Gibraltar.

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† On release took passage via Cape of Good Hope to join Squadron in

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† Indian Ocean.

August††††††††††††††††† Deployed for trade defence and convoy escort in Indian Ocean.

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† Nominated for support of military occupation of Madagascar.

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† (Operation STREAM)

September†††††††††††† Deployed with HM Battleship WARSPITE, HM Cruisers GAMBIA,

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† BIRMINGHAM, DAUNTLESS, MANXMAN and the Dutch cruiser

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† HEEMSKERCK with destroyers of Eastern Fleet as Force A to provide

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† naval support for landings in STREAM..

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† Nominated for support of landing at Nosi Be, an island off NW coast

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† of Madagascar (Operation ESME (B))

††††††††††††††† 9th††††††††† Joined HMS MANXMAN for passage to Nosi Be.

††††††††††††††† 10th††††††† Provided Royal Marines landing party which landed at Hellville.

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† (For details see WAR WITH JAPAN, Volume III (HMSO).)

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† Rejoined Force A

October††††††††††††††††† On release from STREAM took passage to Persian Gulf.

††††††††††††††† 15th††††††† Relieved HM Cruiser CAPETOWN as Persian Gulf Guardship.

November††††††††††††† Guardship deployment in Persian Gulf and Arabian Sea in continuation.



1 9 4 3

January††††††††††††††††† Deployed in Indian Ocean for convoy defence.

to††††††††††††††††††††††††††† (Note: During this period Radar Type 271 was fitted aft on the

July†††††††††††††††††††††††† superstructure to provide efficient surface warning

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† Type 286 was also replaced by RN design Type 290

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† which provided an improved cover against aircraft.

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† See above reference.)

August††††††††††††††††† Transferred to Simonstown for convoy defence and interception patrol

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† in South Atlantic and southern Indian Ocean.

September†††††††††††† Convoy defence and patrol in continuation.



1 9 4 4

January††††††††††††††††† Indian Ocean trade defence duties in continuation.



March††††††††††††††††††† Nominated for withdrawal from operational service and took passage

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† to Colombo.

April†††††††††††††††††††††† Withdrawn from service and deployed as an Accommodation Ship at

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† Colombo

May††††††††††††††††††††††† Accommodation Ship deployment in continuation.

to††††††††††††††††††††††††††† (Note: On 22nd November when British Pacific Fleet was formed the

December††††††††††††† Flag of CinC Eastern Fleet was transferred from HM Battlecruiser

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† RENOWN and transferred to this ship.)

1 9 4 5

January††††††††††††††††† Accommodation Ship deployment in continuation.

to††††††††††††††††††††††††††† Remained Flagship for East Indies Fleet


September†††††††††††† Nominated for return to UK

October††††††††††††††††† Prepared for return passage.

††††††††††††††† 15th††††††† Sailed from Colombo for paying-off.

November††††††††††††† Called at Aden.

††††††††††††††† 17th††††††† Took passage for Devonport from Gibraltar after call in Malta.

††††††††††††††† 25th††††††† At Devonport and Paid-off.

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† Commenced de-storing.

December††††††††††††† Reducing to Reserve status at Devonport

P o s t†† W a r†† N o t e s


HMS CARADOC was transferred to Dartmouth after being accepted into Reserve. The ship was placed on the Disposal List in February 1946 and sold to BISCO for breaking-up by TW Ward at Briton Ferry the next month. She arrived at the breakerís yard in tow on 4th April 1946 for demolition.






by Don Kindell


These convoy lists have not been cross-checked with the text above






Date convoy sailed

Joined convoy as escort

Convoy No.

Left convoy

Date convoy arrived








BHX 064





CM 031





CM 032B





BA 038





CM 040





CM 040A








(Note on Convoys)



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