HMS Bellona, Black Prince, Royalist, Spartan, Diadem
The British AA cruisers, reloaded
These ships were derived from the previous “Dido” by equipping themselves with revised AA artillery, uperstructures and lower chimneys to clear the firing range.
For the rest, they shared the same hull, facilities, the same turrets (shooting notoriously slow for the anti-aircraft defense), the “C”, the highest of the front, giving way to a lookout 40 mm Bofors. These 5 ships were started between November 1939 and February 1940 and completed between 1943 (for the first four, HMS Bellona, Black Prince, Royalist, Spartan) and early 1944 for the Diadem. They served mainly as escorts in the North Atlantic. The only casualty of this class was HMS Spartan, sunk by a German guided Henschel Hs293 jet launched from a Dornier 17 on January 29, 1944.
Note: This is a placeholder article, waiting for full length post to come
One of the first victims of an “anti-ship missile”… Their career continued years after the war, but the Diadem was sold to the Pakistant in 1956 and became the Babur. He had a very long career under this new pavilion.
HMS Bellona in 1943, in convoy protection, in the typical western approach camo pattern
HMS Bellona 1939 specifications
|Dimensions||156 m x 15,40 m x 5,4 m (fully loaded).|
|Displacement||5950 t. standard -7350 tonnes Fully Loaded|
|Propulsion||4 shaft Parsons turbines, 4 Admiralty bolers 62,000 shp.|
|Performances||32.5 knots, Range 10,000 nautical at 14 knots.|
|Armament||8 x 133 mm DP (4×2), 12 x 40 mm Bofors Pom Pom (3×4), 6 x 533 mm TTs|
|Armor||Belt 75 mm, turrets 60 mm, ammunition magazines and citadel 120 mm.|
Conway’s all the world’s fighting ships