HMS Narborough (1916)

HMS Narborough was an Admiralty M-class destroyer built for the Royal Navy during the First World War. She was wrecked after running aground in 1918.

United Kingdom
Name: HMS Narborough
Builder: John Brown & Company, Clydebank
Launched: 2 March 1916
Fate: Wrecked on 12 January 1918
General characteristics
Class and type: Admiralty M-class destroyer
Displacement: 971 long tons (987 t)
Length: 273 ft 4 in (83.31 m) o/a
Beam: 26 ft 8 in (8.13 m)
Draught: 9 ft 8 in (2.95 m)
Installed power:
Propulsion: 3 Shafts; 3 steam turbines
Speed: 34 knots (63 km/h; 39 mph)
Range: 2,100 nmi (3,900 km; 2,400 mi) at 15 knots (28 km/h; 17 mph)
Complement: 76


The Admiralty M class were improved and faster versions of the preceding Laforey-class destroyer.[1] They displaced 971 long tons (987 t). The ships had an overall length of 273 feet 4 inches (83.3 m), a beam of 26 feet 8 inches (8.1 m) and a draught of 9 feet 8 inches (2.9 m). They were powered by three Parsons direct-drive steam turbines, each driving one propeller shaft, using steam provided by four Yarrow boilers. The turbines developed a total of 25,000 shaft horsepower (19,000 kW) and gave a maximum speed of 34 knots (63 km/h; 39 mph). The ships carried a maximum of 237 long tons (241 t) of fuel oil that gave them a range of 2,100 nautical miles (3,900 km; 2,400 mi) at 15 knots (28 km/h; 17 mph). The ships' complement was 76 officers and ratings.[2]

The ships were armed with three single QF 4-inch (102 mm) Mark IV guns and two QF 1.5-pounder (37 mm) anti-aircraft guns. These latter guns were later replaced by a pair of QF 2-pounder (40 mm) "pom-pom" anti-aircraft guns. The ships were also fitted with two above water twin mounts for 21-inch (533 mm) torpedoes.[2]

Construction and service

Narborough was ordered under the Fourth War Programme in February 1915 and built by John Brown & Company at Clydeside. The ship was laid down in May, launched on 20 November 1916 and completed in April 1916.[3] On 12 January 1918, she and her sister ship, HMS Opal, were wrecked on the cliffs at Hesta Rock, just to the north of Windwick Bay, South Ronaldsay.[4] Only one sailor survived; 188 were killed. Most of the casualties were never found and are commemorated on the Portsmouth Memorial.



  • 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.
  • Dittmar, F.J. & Colledge, J.J. (1972). British Warships 1914–1919. Shepperton, UK: Ian Allan. ISBN 0-7110-0380-7.
  • Friedman, Norman (2009). British Destroyers: From Earliest Days to the Second World War. Barnsley, UK: Seaforth Publishing. ISBN 978-1-84832-049-9.
  • Gardiner, Robert & Gray, Randal (1985). Conway's All The World's Fighting Ships 1906–1921. London: Conway Maritime Press. ISBN 0-85177-245-5.
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