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by Lt Cdr Geoffrey B Mason RN (Rtd) (c) 2006

HMS ADVENTURE - Cruiser Minelayer 

Edited by Gordon Smith, Naval-History.Net

HMS Adventure (Navy Photos, click to enlarge)

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Cruiser Minelayer built by HM Dockyard at Devonport and laid down in November 1922. The ship was launched on 18th June 1924 as the 20th RN warship to carry the name derived from the ADVENTURE medal awarded to Captain Wyard, Royal Navy in 1650. It had last been used for a cruiser sold in 1924. She was completed in May 1927. After a successful WARSHIP WEEK National Savings campaign in March 1942 the ship was adopted by the civil community of Plymouth. For details of all naval minelaying operations during WW2 see The Naval Staff History - MINING. Also see Royal Navy Minelaying Operations.


B a t t l e    H o n o u r s

DOVER 1652 - PORTLAND 1653 - GABBARD1653 - LOWESTOFT 1665 - ORFORDNESS 1666 - SOLEBAY 1672 - GOLDEN HORSE Action 1681 - TWO LIONS Action 1681 - BARFLEUR 1692  - BELLISLE 1761 - CHINA 1856-60 - NORMANDY 1944

H e r a l d i c   D a t a

Badge:  On a Field Black, an anchor silver between two shields bearing

the Cross of St George and the Irish Harp respectively.


M o t t o

'Dare all'




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



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                3rd          Worked-up after embarking mines at Portsmouth.

                                Laid Field GR in Straits of Dover with the Auxiliary Minelayers HMS HAMPTON and


                                (Note: U12 was sunk in this Field on 8th October 1939, U400 on13th October 1939 and U16

                                on 24th October 1939).

                16th        Withdrawn from this operation because of manoeuvring problems in Dover harbour.



                4th          Embarked mines at Portsmouth for laying Deep Field off Flamborough Head to give

                                anti-submarine protection of convoys (Operation AD).

                25th        After delay because of lack of escorts completed first lay.

                27th        Second lay of Operation AD.

                30th        Laid Dummy mines off East coast when on passage to Rosyth.



                8th          Returned to Humber for lay in Tees Bay but this was cancelled because no escort ships

                                were available.

                11th        Transferred to Portsmouth prior to minelaying operation off Dutch coast.

                                Escorted on passage by HM Destroyers BLANCHE and BASILISK.

                13th        Detonated magnetic mine near Tongue Light Vessel.

                                Sustained extensive damage and considerable flooding

                                24 of ship's company killed or missing and 69 wounded.

                                HMS BASILISK took off survivors.

                                HMS BLANCHE was mined whilst standing by and later sank in tow.

                16th        Under temporary repair at Chatham.



                19th        Took passage to Plymouth for refit

                20th        Paid off and taken in hand for refit at Plymouth


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January                  Under refit.





                18th        Carried out post refit trials and prepared for service.


October                  Worked-up at Scapa Flow.

                17th        Joined 1st Minelaying Squadron at Kyle of Lochalah (Port ZA) on completion.



                8th          Laid Deep Anti-Submarine minefield in NW Approaches with BM Auxiliary Minelayers

                                SOUTHERN PRINCE, PORT NAPIER, PORT QUEBEC and MENESTHEUS

                                (Operation SN44).

                                Detached on completion for duty at Milford Haven.

                15th        Deployed in SW Approaches to reinforce existing A/S minefield.

                to            Laid Field ZME 1 - 3 in St. George's Channel, unescorted.


                25th        Nominated for special duty in Bay of Biscay.




                2nd         Laid Anti-submarine Field GQ1 in undeclared area on Little Sole Bank, West of Lorient.

                                Destroyer escort provided.

                3rd          Returned to Milford Haven and progressed ZME Field pending suitable weather in

                                Bay of Biscay for continuation of Field GQ2.

                5th          Laid Fields ZMS 4 - 9 in St George's Channel.

                29th        Returned to complete work in Bay of Biscay.

                30th        Laid Field GQ2 on Little Sole Bank with destroyer escort.

                                Returned to Milford Haven on completion to continue 2MS work.


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                5th          Laid Fields ZME 10 -14 in St. George's Channel.

                14th        Diverted for duty as AA Guardship at Liverpool.

                                During passage activated Ground Mine in Liverpool Bay and extensively damaged.

                                Taken in hand for examination and repair at Liverpool.


February                Under repair.




May                        Under repair.

                7th          Damaged during air raid when ship alongside (HMS MAPLIN) was hit.


June                        Repair work in continuation.


July                         On completion detached from Squadron for duty with Home Fleet for Operation EF.

                                Embarked mines and other stores for passage to Murmansk

                                Took passage with Home Fleet ships providing cover for air attacks on Tromso and


                30th        Detached to complete passage, escorted by HM Destroyer ANTHONY.



                1st           Arrived Murmansk.

                4th          Took passage to Kyle of Lochalsh without escort.

                                Speed limited by defects.

                11th        Rejoined Squadron.

                25th        Laid Field SN70A in Northern Barrage, East of Iceland with HMS SOUTHERN PRINCE

                                and HMS PORT QUEBEC.

                                (Note: HMS SOUTHERN PRINCE was torpedoed on return passage).

                30th        Withdrawn for service for examination of turbine machinery.


September             Distortion of turbines confirmed.

                                Taken in hand for repair in Liverpool


October                  Under repair




December              Carried out post refit trials and prepared for service.


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                2nd         Rejoined ML1 at Kyle of Lochalsh for minelaying duty.

                9th          Laid Field SN15A in East Coast Mine Barrier with Auxiliary Minelayers SOUTHERN

                                PRINCE, MENESTHEUS and AGAMEMNON.

                16th        Lay of Field SN15B in continuation with same ships.



                2nd         Laid Field SN17 in East Coast Barrier with HM Auxiliary Minelayers SOUTHERN

                                PRINCE, HMS PORT QUEBEC, MENESTHEUS and HMS AGAMEMNON.

                3rd          Detached to embark British Trade Mission for passage to Murmansk.

                                On departure from Clyde damaged in collision with HM Landing Ship TASAJERA.

                                Sustained serious structural damage and consequential flooding.

                                Withdrawn from duty for repair.

                13th        Under emergency repair in Clyde shipyard.


March                    Passage to Southampton for permanent repair

                                Under repair at Southampton.

                                (Note: ASDIC Type 128 for mine detection fitted.)


April                       Under repair

                30th        Rejoined Squadron on completion.



                8th          Laid Field SN3A in Northern Barrage off Faeroes Bank with other ML1 ships.

                                (Note: US Navy officers embarked for this operation.)

                15th        Laid Fields SN16D, E and F in East Coast Barrier without escort.



                1st           Laid Field SN72 in Denmark Strait for Northern Barrage with HMS SOUTHERN

                                PRINCE, HMS AGAMEMNON, HMS MENESTHEUS and PORT QUEBEC escorted

                                by three destroyers from 1st Minelaying Squadron.

                                Ocean escort was provided by HM Cruiser MANCHESTER and an escort with Distant

                                Cover by ships of Home Fleet off Iceland.

                11th        Laid Field SN3B in Northern Barrage off Faeroes Bank with other Squadron ships.

                19th        Laid Field SN16F in East Coast Barrier, unescorted.

                21st         Detached for duty with Home Fleet.

                                Formed part of Decoy convoy as a diversion to protect Russian convoy PQ17.

                                (Operation ES)

                22nd       Deployed for Operation ES.



                2nd         Resumed minelaying duties with Squadron.

                11th        Laid Field SN3C in Northern Barrage off Faeroes Bank with other Squadron snips.

                31st         Laid Field SN82 in Northern Barrage with other Squadron ships escorted by four




                7th          Laid Field SN16G in East Coast Mine Barrier, unescorted.

                21st         Laid Field SN73 in Denmark Strait for Northern Barrage with other Squadron ships

                                escorted by HM Destroyers CASTLETON, BRIGHTON, CHARLESTOWN and


                                Ocean Escort was provided by HM Cruiser AURORA and three Home Fleet destroyers.



                2nd         Laid Field SN89 in Northern Barrage with other Squadron ships.

                15th        Laid Field SN65A In Northern Barrage, south of Faeroes with other Squadron' ships,

                18th        Laid Field SN3E in Northern Barrage after weather hold-up.


October  Deployed with Squadron at Kyle of Lochalsh.



                1st           Laid Field SN3F in Northern Barrage.

                12th        Completed East Coast Mine Barrier by lay of Field SN17A.

                                Detached for duty in support of Mediterranean operations.

                15th        Embarked 2000 aircraft depth charges and mines at Plymouth.

                20th        Passage to Gibraltar.



                1st           Returned to Milford Haven for minelay duties in SW Approaches.

                9th          Diverted from minelaying duty for further Mediterranean support.

                12th        Passage to Gibraltar with RAF personnel and stores.

                27th        Taken in hand for docking at Plymouth to repair weather damage..


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                5th          Passage to rejoin Squadron.

                6th          Redeployed at Milford Haven for minelaying duty in SW Approaches.

                15th        Laid Deep A/S Field HS1 at the western end of existing minefield in St. George's


                                On completion detached for further support of Mediterranean operations.

                                Embarked mines and other associated stores for minelaying use in Mediterranean.

                21st         Took passage with stores for Gibraltar and Oran.



                4th          Transferred mines to HM Cruiser Minelayer ABDIEL at Oran.

                                Returned to Milford Haven.

                19th        Sailed with cargo of mines in company with HMS ABDIEL for Oran.

                28th        Remained at Algiers to re-stock ABDIEL after minelay.



                14th        Passage to Milford Haven for further mine delivery.

                18th        Embarked mines

.               23rd        Passage to Oran.



                8th          At Gibraltar during return passage to UK.

                10th        Diverted to intercepted German Blockade Runner IRENE on passage from Japan.

                                Sighted enemy vessel and fired two rounds.

                                Ship scuttled in position 375 miles West of Vigo.

                                Rescued 157 survivors including 101 naval personnel.

                12th        Arrived at Milford Haven with machinery defects.

                15th        Under repair.

                                Diesel Engine removed.


May                        Under repair.

                22nd       Further deliver of mines for storage at Mers el Kebir.

                29th        Collected Coastal Forces stores in UK for use in Mediterranean.


June                        Completed deliveries in Mediterranean

                                Return passage to UK


July                         Nominated use as Depot and Repair Ship during future operations.

                3rd          Taken in hand for repair at Devonport.

                26th        Passage to Milford Haven on completion.



                4th          Involved in collision with HM Trawler LUNDY and sustained structural damage.

                8th          Under temporary repair at Milford Haven.

                18th        Further machinery defects required dockyard attention.



                14th        Taken in hand for repair to machinery at Devonport.


October                  Under repair.



                2nd         On completion of trials resumed operational duty.

                11th        Future conversion to suit future use arranged in Liverpool.

                25th        Taken in hand for conversion to Landing Ship (Engineering),


December              Conversion in hand.

                                (Note: AA armament to be increased.)


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January                  Shipyard work in continuation.

to                            Nominated for duty in support of Normandy landings (Operation NEPTUNE).



March                    Carried out post refit trials.

                31st        On completion deployed at Portland as an Accommodation Ship.


April                       Transferred to Portsmouth


May                        Deployed for duty with Allied Naval Commander Expeditionary Force.

                                (For details of naval activities before and after the Normandy landings in LANDINGS

                                IN NORMANDY, JUNE 1944 (HMSO) and OPERATION NEPTUNE by Kenneth


                                Allocated to Force G as for support of ships requiring repair.


June                        Deployed in MULBERRY B off Arromanches for support and repair duties.

                19th        Repair parties landed for extensive salvage work on landing craft which had been

                                damaged during northerly gale.


July                         NEPTUNE duty in continuation


August                  Deployed with Home Fleet on release from NEPTUNE.


September             Home Fleet support in continuation


October                  Passage to Portsmouth and paid off into Care and Maintenance.


November              In Reserve under Care and Maintenance.



                10th        Re-commissioned with reduced complement.


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January                  Deployed for repair duties in Portsmouth Command.





                14th        Deployed with British naval units at Wilhelmshaven.


June                       Deployed at Portsmouth pending review of future role.



                25th        Paid off into Reserve and de-equipped ready for laying-up.


August                  Placed in Reserve at Falmouth


P o s t   W a r   N o t e s


HMS ADVENTURE was placed on the Disposal List in July 1947 and later broken up at Briton Ferry. 


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