HMS Portchester Castle (K362)

HMS Portchester Castle was a Castle-class corvette built in 1943 and scrapped in 1958. She was the only ship of the Royal Navy to be named after Portchester Castle in Hampshire, and was used for the 1952 film The Cruel Sea, in which she played Saltash Castle.

United Kingdom
Name: HMS Portchester Castle
Ordered: 6 February 1943
Builder: Swan Hunter, Wallsend
Laid down: 17 March 1943
Launched: 21 June 1943
Identification: Pennant number: K362
Fate: paid off 1947 and broken up 14 May 1958
General characteristics
Class and type: Castle-class corvette
Displacement: 1,060 tons
Length: 252 ft (77 m)
Beam: 37 ft (11 m)
Draught: 10 ft (3.0 m)
Installed power: 2,750 hp (2.05 MW)
  • Two water-tube boilers
  • One 4-cylinder triple-expansion steam engine
  • Single screw
Speed: 16.5 kn (30.6 km/h)
Range: 9,500 nmi (17,600 km) at 10 knots (19 km/h)
Complement: 112
Sensors and
processing systems:
  • Type 272 radar
  • Type 144Q sonar
  • Type 147B sonar

Construction and career

She was launched on 21 June 1943 at Swan Hunter shipyard in Newcastle upon Tyne.

Sinking of U-484

On 9 September 1944 Portchester Castle and Helmsdale sank the German submarine U-484 in the North Atlantic north-west of Ireland, in position 55°45′N 11°41′W.[1]

Sinking of U-1200

As one of four ships in 30th Escort Group under the command of Denys Rayner, Portchester Castle shared in the sinking of the German submarine U-1200[2] south of Ireland (in position 50°24′N 09°10′W) on 11 November 1944, along with her sister ships Launceston Castle, Pevensey Castle and Kenilworth Castle.[1]


She was paid off in 1947.

Film appearances

In 1951 Portchester Castle was employed to represent the fictitious HMS Saltash Castle in the film The Cruel Sea (1953) in which she is shown wearing the pennant number F362, rather than her own K362. In 1955 The ship was also seen in the film The Man Who Never Was. HMS Portchester Castle was also seen in the film The Navy Lark (1959) showing her profile with her pennant number F362.


She was scrapped at Troon, Scotland on 14 May 1958.[3]



  1. "HMS Portchester Castle at". Retrieved 26 April 2009.
  2. "U-1200 at". Retrieved 26 April 2009.
  3. "HMS Portchester Castle at Battleships-Cruisers website". Retrieved 26 April 2009.


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