Admiralty M-class destroyer

The M class, more properly known as the Admiralty M class, were a class of 85 destroyers built for the Royal Navy that saw service during World War I. All ships were built to an identical - Admiralty - design, hence the class name. 18 other vessels which were officially included within the 'M' class were built to variant designs by three specialist builders - 10 by Yarrow, 6 by Thornycroft (who also built another 6 to the standard Admiralty design), and 2 by Hawthorn Leslie; however, these are listed in other articles.

HMS Pasley
Class overview
Operators:  Royal Navy
Preceded by: L class
Succeeded by: R class
Subclasses:
Built: 1914–1916
In commission: 1915–1923
Completed: 85
General characteristics
Type: Destroyer
Displacement:
  • 994 long tons (1,010 t) standard
  • 1,042 long tons (1,059 t) full load
Length: 269 ft (82 m)
Beam: 27 ft 6 in (8.38 m)
Draught:
  • 8 ft 8 in (2.64 m) mean
  • 10 ft 6 in (3.20 m) maximum
Propulsion: 3 shafts, steam turbines, 25,000 shp (18,642 kW)
Speed: 34 knots (39.1 mph; 63.0 km/h)
Range: 237–298 tons fuel oil
Complement: 80
Armament:

The Admiralty design was based on the preceding L class but modified to produce an increase in speed by approximately 6 knots (11 km/h; 6.9 mph). All ships built to the Admiralty design had three identical narrow, circular funnels (this did not apply to the 18 ships built by the specialist yards).

Ships of the pre-war (1913–14) Programme

Six vessels were built under the 1913–14 Naval Programme. These differed from the wartime vessels by being 1,010 tons full load, with slightly smaller dimensions.

NameShip BuilderLaid down[2]Launched[2]Completed[2]Fate
MatchlessSwan Hunter & Wigham Richardson, Wallsend on Tyne8 November 19135 October 1914December 1914Sold for scrapping on 26 October 1921.
MurrayPalmers Shipbuilding & Iron Company, Hebburn on Tyne4 December 19138 August 1914December 1914Sold for scrapping on 9 May 1921.
MyngsPalmers, Hebburn on Tyne31 December 191324 September 1914February 1915Sold for scrapping on 9 May 1921.
MilneJohn Brown & Company, Clydebank18 December 19135 October 1914December 1914Sold for scrapping on 22 September 1921.
MorrisJohn Brown, Clydebank20 January 191419 November 1914December 1914Sold for scrapping on 8 November 1921.
MoorsomJohn Brown, Clydebank15 January 191421 December 1914February 1915Sold for scrapping on 8 November 1921.

Besides the above six vessels, three destroyers already under construction were purchased from Yarrow, two from Thornycroft and two from Hawthorn Leslie to these builders' individual designs, and these are listed in separate articles. Three further ships were projected under the 1914-15 Naval Programme - and named Marksman, Menace and Monitor; however these three ships were cancelled before being contracted to any specific builder, in favour of two Marksman-class leaders.

Ships of the Emergency War Construction Programme

All the following vessels were ordered in five batches as part of the War Emergency Programme. Wartime builds omitted the cruising turbines originally specified and carried by the pre-war sub-group. The funnel heights were also raised compared with the pre-war vessels, and the second 4 in gun was mounted on a bandstand, as with the earlier L-class destroyers. Partridge, Norman, Maenad, Ophelia and Observer were later fitted to carry a kite balloon.

1st War Programme

Sixteen vessels were ordered in September 1914 (as well as four of the Yarrow M class), but part of their cost was met by the provision in the 1914-15 Programme for ten destroyers.

NameShip BuilderBegunLaunchedCompletedFate
MonsJohn Brown30 September 19141 May 1915July 1915Sold for breaking up 8 November 1921.
MarneJohn Brown30 September 191329 May 1915August 1916Sold for breaking up 29 September 1921.
MichaelJohn I. Thornycroft & Company, WoolstonOctober 191419 May 1915August 1915Sold for breaking up 22 September 1921.
MilbrookThornycroftNovember 191412 July 1915October 1915Sold for breaking up 22 September 1921.
MinionThornycroftNovember 191411 September 1915November 1915Sold for breaking up 8 November 1921.
MunsterThornycroftNovember 191424 November 1915January 1916Sold for breaking up 15 November 1921.
MysticWilliam Denny & Brothers, Dumbarton27 October 191420 June 191511 November 1915Sold for breaking up 8 November 1921.
MaenadDenny10 November 191410 August 191512 November 1915Sold for breaking up 22 September 1921.
MagicJ. Samuel White & Company, Cowes1 January 191510 September 19158 January 1916Sold for breaking up 22 September 1921.
MoresbyWhite14 January 191520 November 19157 April 1916Sold for breaking up 9 May 1921.
MandateFairfield Shipbuilding & Engineering Company, Govan27 April 191513 August 1915Sold for breaking up 22 September 1921.
MannersFairfield15 June 191521 September 1915Sold for breaking up 26 October 1921.
MarmionSwan Hunter28 May 1915Sunk after collision with Tirade on 21 October 1917 off Lerwick.
MartialSwan HunterOctober 19141 July 1915October 1915Sold for breaking up 9 May 1921.
Mary RoseSwan Hunter8 October 1915Sunk on 17 October 1917 by German cruisers SMS Brummer and SMS Bremse off the Norwegian coast.
MenaceSwan HunterSeptember 19149 November 1915April 1916Sold for breaking up 9 May 1921.

2nd War Programme

Nine further vessels were ordered in early November 1914 (as well as one further Yarrow M class).

NameShip BuilderLaid DownLaunchedCompletedFate
MamelukeJohn Brown23 December 191414 August 1915October 1915Sold for breaking up 22 September 1921.
MarvelDenny11 January 19157 October 191528 December 1915Sold for breaking up 9 May 1921.
MindfulFairfield24 August 191510 November 1915Sold for breaking up 22 September 1921.
MischiefFairfield12 October 191516 December 1915Sold for breaking up 8 November 1921.
NonsuchPalmers7 December 1915February 1916Sold for breaking up 9 May 1921.
NegroPalmers8 March 1915Sunk after colliding with Hoste in the North Sea on 21 December 1916;depth charges from Hoste exploded and blew out the Negro's hull plating.
NepeanThornycroftFebruary 191522 January 1916March 1916Sold for breaking up 15 November 1921.
NereusThornycroftMarch 191524 February 1916May 1916Sold for breaking up 15 November 1921.
NessusSwan Hunter24 August 1915Sunk after colliding with HMS Amphitrite in the North Sea on 8 September 1916.

3rd War Programme

Twenty-two further vessels were ordered in late November 1914.

  • Nestor, built by Swan Hunter, launched 22 December 1915. Sunk on 31 May 1916 at the Battle of Jutland.
  • Noble, built by Alexander Stephen & Sons, Linthouse, begun 6 February 1915, launched 25 November 1915, and completed 15 February 1916. Sold for breaking up 8 November 1921.
  • Nomad, built by Alexander Stephen & Sons, Linthouse, launched 7 February 1916. Sunk on 31 May 1916 at the Battle of Jutland.
  • Nizam, built by Alexander Stephen & Sons, Linthouse, begun 11 February 1915, launched 6 April 1916, and then completed by Beardmore 29 June 1916. Sold for breaking up 9 May 1921.
  • Nonpareil, built by Alexander Stephen & Sons, Linthouse, begun 24 February 1915, launched 16 May 1916, and completed 28 June 1916. Sold for breaking up 9 May 1921.
  • Norman, built by Palmers, launched 20 March 1916 and completed August 1916. Sold for breaking up 9 May 1921.
  • Northesk, built by Palmers, launched 5 July 1916 and completed October 1916. Sold for breaking up 9 May 1921.
  • North Star, built by Palmers, launched 9 November 1916. Sunk on 23 April 1918 at Zeebrugge.
  • Nugent, built by Palmers, launched 23 January 1917 and completed April 1917. Sold for breaking up 9 May 1921.
  • Obedient, built by Scotts Shipbuilding and Engineering Company Limited, Greenock, launched 6 November 1916 and completed February 1916. Sold for breaking up 25 November 1921.
  • Obdurate, built by Scotts, launched 21 November 1916 and completed March 1916. Sold for breaking up 15 November 1921.
  • Onslaught, built by Fairfield, launched 4 December 1915 and completed 3 March 1916. Sold for breaking up 30 October 1921. Some sources claimed that she torpedoed and sank the pre-dreadnought battleship SMS Pommern, while others claimed that Faulknor sank her.
  • Onslow, built by Fairfield, launched 15 February 1916 and completed 15 April 1916. Sold for breaking up 26 October 1921.
  • Opal, built by William Doxford & Sons, Sunderland, launched 11 September 1915. Wrecked off Scapa Flow with Narborough on 12 January 1918 (one survivor).
  • Ophelia, built by Doxford, launched 13 October 1916 and completed May 1916. Sold for breaking up 8 November 1921.
  • Opportune, built by Doxford, launched 20 November 1915 and completed June 1916. Sold for breaking up 7 December 1923.
  • Oracle, built by Doxford, launched 23 December 1915 and completed August 1916. Sold for breaking up 31 October 1921.
  • Orestes, built by Doxford, launched 21 March 1916 and completed June 1916. Sold for breaking up 31 October 1921.
  • Orford, built by Doxford, launched 19 April 1916 and completed December 1916. Sold for breaking up 1 November 1921.
  • Orpheus, built by Doxford, launched 17 June 1916 and completed September 1916. Sold for breaking up 31 October 1921.
  • Octavia, built by Doxford, launched 21 June 1916 and completed November 1916. Sold for breaking up 5 November 1921.
  • Ossory, built by John Brown, begun 23 December 1914, launched 9 October 1915, and completed November 1915. Sold for breaking up 8 November 1921.

4th War Programme

Sixteen further vessels were ordered in February 1915 (as well as two more of the Thornycroft M class). The eight last-named below of these were of the Repeat M subgroup with raking stems compared with the straight stems of the previous sub-group, and the bows were moved flared to improve seakeeping qualities.

  • Napier, built by John Brown, begun 24 March 1915, launched 27 November 1915, and completed January 1916. Sold for breaking up 8 November 1921.
  • Narborough, built by John Brown, begun May 1915, launched 2 March 1916. Wrecked off Scapa Flow (with Opal) on 12 January 1918 (no survivors).
  • Narwhal, built by Denny, begun 21 April 1915, launched 30 December 1915, and completed 3 March 1916. Collided with another vessel in 1919 and broken up in 1920 at Devonport Dockyard.
  • Nicator, built by Denny, begun 21 April 1915, launched 3 February 1916, and completed 15 April 1916. Sold for breaking up 9 May 1921.
  • Norseman, built by Doxford, launched 15 August 1916, and completed November 1916. Sold for breaking up 9 May 1921.
  • Oberon, built by Doxford, launched 29 September 1916, and completed December 1916. Sold for breaking up 9 May 1921.
  • Observer, built by Fairfield, begun 1 June 1915, launched 1 May 1916, and completed 15 June 1916. Sold for breaking up 30 October 1921.
  • Offa, built by Fairfield, begun 6 July 1915, launched 7 June 1916, and completed 31 July 1916. Sold for breaking up 30 October 1921.
  • Orcadia, built by Fairfield, begun 24 June 1915, launched 26 July 1916, and completed 29 September 1916. Sold for breaking up 31 October 1921.
  • Oriana, built by Fairfield, launched 23 September 1916, and completed 4 November 1916. Sold for breaking up 31 October 1921.
  • Oriole, built by Palmers, launched 31 July 1916, and completed November 1916. Sold for breaking up 9 May 1921.
  • Osiris, built by Palmers, launched 28 September 1916, and completed December 1916. Sold for breaking up 9 May 1921.
  • Paladin, built by Scotts, begun May 1915, launched 27 March 1916, and completed May 1916. Sold for breaking up 9 May 1921.
  • Parthian, built by Scotts, begun July 1915, launched 3 July 1916, and completed September 1916. Sold for breaking up 8 November 1921.
  • Partridge, built by Swan Hunter, begun July 1915, launched 4 March 1916. Sunk on 12 December 1917 by gunfire from the German destroyers G 101, G 103, G 104, and V 100 off Norwegian coast.
  • Pasley, built by Swan Hunter, begun July 1915, launched 15 April 1916, and completed July 1916. Sold for breaking up 9 May 1921.

5th War Programme

Eighteen final vessels were ordered in May 1915 (as well as two of the Thornycroft M class and two of the Yarrow M class). However, two of the eighteen were fitted with geared turbines and became the prototypes for the Admiralty R class destroyers (these were the Radstock and Raider, and are listed with the R class). The other sixteen were all to the Admiralty design were of the Repeat M subgroup with raking stems apart from the two ships ordered from White as Redmill and Redwing, which were completed to the earlier 'M' Class design and were renamed Medina and Medway while building.

  • Medina (ex-Redmill), built by White, begun 23 September 1915, launched 8 March 1916, and completed 30 June 1916. Sold for breaking up 9 May 1921.
  • Medway (ex-Medora, ex-Redwing), built by White, begun 2 November 1915, launched 19 April 1916, and completed 2 August 1916. Sold for breaking up 9 May 1921.
  • Pelican, built by William Beardmore & Company, Dalmuir, begun 25 June 1915, launched 18 March 1916, and completed 1 May 1916. Sold for breaking up 9 May 1921.
  • Pellew, built by Beardmore, begun 28 June 1915, launched 8 May 1916, and completed 30 June 1916. Sold for breaking up 9 May 1921.
  • Penn, built by John Brown, begun 9 June 1915, launched 8 April 1916, and completed May 1916. Sold for breaking up 31 October 1921.
  • Peregrine, built by John Brown, begun 9 June 1915, launched 29 May 1916, and completed July 1916. Sold for breaking up 15 November 1921.
  • Petard, built by Denny, begun 5 July 1915, launched 24 March 1916, and completed 23 May 1916. Sold for breaking up 9 May 1921.
  • Peyton, built by Denny, begun 12 July 1915, launched 2 May 1916, and completed 29 June 1916. Sold for breaking up 9 May 1921.
  • Pheasant, built by Fairfield, launched 23 October 1916. Mined on 1 March 1917 off the Orkney Islands.
  • Phoebe, built by Fairfield, launched 20 November 1916, and completed 28 December 1916. Sold for breaking up 15 November 1921.
  • Pigeon, built by Hawthorn Leslie & Company, Hebburn, begun 14 July 1915, launched 3 March 1916, and completed 2 June 1916. Sold for breaking up 9 May 1921.
  • Plover, built by Hawthorn Leslie, begun 30 July 1915, launched 3 March 1916, and completed 30 June 1916. Sold for breaking up 9 May 1921.
  • Plucky, built by Scotts, launched 21 April 1916, and completed July 1916. Sold for breaking up 9 May 1921.
  • Portia, built by Scotts, launched 10 August 1916, and completed October 1916. Sold for breaking up 9 May 1921.
  • Prince, built by Stephen, begun 27 July 1915, launched 26 July 1916, and completed 21 September 1916. Sold for breaking up 9 May 1921.
  • Pylades, built by Stephen, begun 27 July 1915, launched 28 September 1916, and then completed by Beardmore 30 December 1916. Sold for breaking up 9 May 1921.

See also

Media related to Admiralty M class destroyer at Wikimedia Commons

Notes

Bibliography

  • Colledge, J. J.; Warlow, Ben (2006) [1969]. Ships of the Royal Navy: The Complete Record of all Fighting Ships of the Royal Navy (Rev. ed.). London: Chatham Publishing. ISBN 978-1-86176-281-8.
  • Destroyers of the Royal Navy, 1893-1981, Maurice Cocker, 1983, Ian Allan ISBN 0-7110-1075-7
  • Jane's Fighting Ships, 1919, Jane's Publishing.
  • British Warships 1914-1919, Fred Dittmar & Jim Colledge, 1972, Ian Allan SBN 7110 0380 7.
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