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HMS Warspite pics (post WWII)


foeth
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Gallery_Warspite_01.jpg

 

Following my earlier post of Warspite (1937, on BM, on OTS blog), a series of images of Warspite (on OTS blog) after decommissioning and running aground at Prussia Cove. Finding new images is quite difficult and auction prices go up really quickly, but I hope to add more. In fact, I added a new one today. Nothing unseen or special; I nearly managed to get two unique shots and put in a

Spoiler

70 quid

bid... and... lost... If people would stop bidding on my photographs they could see them for free on my site! Anyway. While Warspite isn't even in my top three of next projects, I think the wrecked version is a superb diorama subject. Also, the Britmodeller editor is terrible.

 

Gallery_Warspite_00.jpg

There's a small line running from the bridge towards A-turret carrying a marker (top left). Top right shows Warspite's (1937) main mast with the helm signals—a green ball for starboard and red cones for port—suspended by a single line running over a pair of large pulleys. When Warspite went to the breakers (bottom left, same images as above) the helm indicators were still present. After she beached herself the helm signals were gone; the two large pulleys are hanging fully vertically. Was the green starboard ball reused as a wreck marker? My Admiralty Navigation Manual (1938) has a small section of wreck buoys off the coasts of the British isles using green balls hoisted in sets of two or three:

  • one set of two: pass on port hand
  • one set of three: pass on starboard hand
  • two sets of two: pass on either side.

whereby the hand direction is with the main flood stream around the British isles; a small map pointing our that direction is even provided in the manual. It is pretty straightforward on what side to pass this particular wreck and while two buoys should have been raised should the above apply, if I had to guess this single buoy should be green.

Gallery_Warspite_02.jpg

I always remove blemishes from scans and one may inadvertently remove something in error. In this case the postcard above was damaged at the precise location of the marker and I hadn't noticed the buoy on other images when I was cleaning this one; the line remains visible and the marker is still there/

Gallery_Warspite_03.jpg


Gallery_Warspite_04.jpg


Gallery_Warspite_05.jpg

 

 

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Possibly a leftover from the last time the ship was at anchor or at her bouy in the Solent, in accordance with the collision regulations - I don't have a copy of the regulations of the period, but currently they say

"A vessel at anchor shall exhibit where it can best be seen:

(i) in the fore part, an all-round white light or one ball; ...."

 

The marker is also visible on photos taken in the Solent, eg https://www.cadgwith.com/Images/prussiacove/Cadgwith-Warspite-HMSWARSPITE-LAIDUPINSPITHEAD-1946-T.jpg

Edited by Our Ned
Typo
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46 minutes ago, Our Ned said:

Possibly a leftover from the last time the ship was at anchor or at her bouty in the Solent, in accordance with the collision regulations -

 

A yes, indeed, there goes my helm indicator theory! I'll try finding more info in the navigation manual; I only searched the part on wrecks so far.

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4 hours ago, Our Ned said:

Possibly a leftover from the last time the ship was at anchor or at her bouy in the Solent, in accordance with the collision regulations - I don't have a copy of the regulations of the period, but currently they say

"A vessel at anchor shall exhibit where it can best be seen:

(i) in the fore part, an all-round white light or one ball; ...."

 

The marker is also visible on photos taken in the Solent, eg https://www.cadgwith.com/Images/prussiacove/Cadgwith-Warspite-HMSWARSPITE-LAIDUPINSPITHEAD-1946-T.jpg

Current regulations date from 1972.  The regulations in force in 1947 would have been the 1929 SOLAS convention which I cannot find anywhere on line.  I do have a copy of my father's Sea Cadet handbook dating from about 1937/38 and the limited subset of rules given in there are broadly similar to the 1972 regulations but there's nothing in that book about anchor shapes or lights.

 

Maybe it is just me, but whilst I find those photos historically very interesting, at the same time I think they're really rather sad.

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Chewbacca's post has prompted me to check the Manual of Seamanship Vol I dated 1937, which quotes the 1929 SOLAS regulations.  Under Article 11, the regs state "Between sunrise and sunset all vessels when at anchor in or near a fairway shall carry, forward, where it can best be seen, one black ball, two feet in diameter."

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6 hours ago, Chewbacca said:

Maybe it is just me, but whilst I find those photos historically very interesting, at the same time I think they're really rather sad.

No, not just you. For a ship with a fighting reputation such as hers it wasn't a glorious way to go.       Regards, Jeff.

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9 hours ago, Our Ned said:

Chewbacca's post has prompted me to check the Manual of Seamanship Vol I dated 1937, which quotes the 1929 SOLAS regulations.  Under Article 11, the regs state "Between sunrise and sunset all vessels when at anchor in or near a fairway shall carry, forward, where it can best be seen, one black ball, two feet in diameter."

 

I wonder if they left that ball while towing the wreck (which is not exactly at anchor or moored)?  I also noticed in the Solent image that there are also two balls in the line going towards the main aerials, above the pompom platform.

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Copy of 1927 SOLAS not to hand, but the current version says 

"(a) A vessel not under command shall exhibit:

...

(ii) two balls or similar shapes in a vertical line where they can best be seen;"

and I suspect the 1927 regs were the same.

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2 hours ago, foeth said:

I also noticed in the Solent image that there are also two balls in the line going towards the main aerials, above the pompom platform.

Those look like the Anchor signal balls.

Belay that, @Our Ned is right - one ball is at anchor, 2 balls s NUC; the anchor ball is usually displayed forward, NUC from high up/midships/further aft - need more coffee to wake up before posting!

 

In the photo's at Prussia Cove she should be displaying 3 balls vertically to indicate she's aground

 

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On 27/11/2022 at 21:52, Our Ned said:

Chewbacca's post has prompted me to check the Manual of Seamanship Vol I dated 1937, which quotes the 1929 SOLAS regulations.  Under Article 11, the regs state "Between sunrise and sunset all vessels when at anchor in or near a fairway shall carry, forward, where it can best be seen, one black ball, two feet in diameter."

 

Those shapes are clearly not being displayed forward; equally she's not at anchor in any of these photos.

 

On 28/11/2022 at 10:08, Our Ned said:

Copy of 1927 SOLAS not to hand, but the current version says 

"(a) A vessel not under command shall exhibit:

...

(ii) two balls or similar shapes in a vertical line where they can best be seen;"

and I suspect the 1927 regs were the same.

But under the current rules, NUC doesn't include when being towed.  Rule 24 states:

 

(e) A vessel or object being towed, other that those mentioned in paragraph (g) of this Rule, shall exhibit:

(i) sidelights;

(ii) a sternlight;

(iii) when the length of the tow exceeds 200 m, a diamond shape where it can best be seen.

 

Para (g) refers to "inconspicuous, partly submerged vessel or object".  I don't think anyone could refer to WARSPITE as inconspicuous or partly submerged (at least not until she got to Prussia Cove!).

 

I do concede that the 1937 rules may have required NUC shapes when being towed where the 972 rules do not.  Clearly there are some differences between the shapes in the 1937 and 1972 regs because otherwise why is she showing the inverted cones in the second block of photos which under the current rules indicate a fishing vessel?

 

 

 

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47 minutes ago, Chewbacca said:

Clearly there are some differences between the shapes in the 1937 and 1972 regs because otherwise why is she showing the inverted cones in the second block of photos which under the current rules indicate a fishing vessel?

Photo was taken on a Friday and the galley only had the spuds for the chips?

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