Requisitioned Auxiliary – Battenhall

 S S Battenhall sepiaS



S S Battenhall sepiaS 


Official Number:                       114771

Laid down:

Builder:                                    Blyth Shipbuilding & Drydock Co., Cowpen Quay, Blyth

Launched:                               15 August 1901

Into Service:                             August 1914

Out of service:                          December 1914

Fate:                                         Sunk 1942


Items of historic interest involving this ship: –


Background Data:  One of an additional group of ships requisitioned by the Admiralty during WW1 to augment the ships of the RFA


Career Data:

15 August 1901 launched by Blyth Shipbuilding & Drydock Co, Cowpen Quay, Blyth as Yard Nr 107 named BATTENHALL for Lombard SS Co Ltd, Newcastle

9 October 1901 completed after running her trials off Blyth

19 October 1901 the Lloyds List newspaper reported …


19 10 1901 Lloyds List Battenhall


1 November 1901 passed St Vincent CV

20 November 1901 at Buenos Ayres

24 September 1902 berthed at Charlestown from Huelva, Spain

6 December 1902 arrived at Cardiff

12 December 1902 sailed from Cardiff

25 January 1903 at Brunswick 2nd Mate John P Wilcox discharged dead – natural causes

24 February 1903 berthed at Portland after a rough passage across the Atlantic. The ship lost one of her lifeboats, part of her deck cargo and Chief Officer Victor Parke and Bosun Frank Polyarers were both swept over the side and drowned. Reported in the ‘Times Despatch’, Virginia USA on 25 February 1903 and the ‘Hull Daily Mail’ of 5 March 1903

19 March 1903 in dock at Blyth

26 July 1903 grounded in the river near Vladivostock. Assisted off and continued

9 January 1904 arrived at Penang from Calcutta

18 January 1904 sailed from Penang for Langkat

8 March 1904 cleared from Singapore

11 March 1904 berthed at Sydney, NSW from Singapore and Pulan Samboa

18 March 1905 grounded off Dromand Pier, WA on a sand bar in thick fog – floated off on the next high tide

12 April 1905 berthed at Port Adelaide

20 April 1905 berthed at Sydney, NSW from Port Adelaide

6 May 1905 the ships owners were sued in the Vice Admirals Court at Sydney, NSW by the first mate, second mate, first, second and third engineers and the steward for non payment of wages totalling £540. The case arose from the officers and crew who had signed Imperial Articles in 1903 and while the crew later were placed on Interstate Articles at a higher rate of pay the above officers did not receive the increase nor did they sign the Interstate Articles. Result the officers lost their claim

18 November 1905 at Singapore a sailor from the ship – Edward Hansen – appeared before the Marine Court charged with leaving the ship without consent. He pleaded Guilty and was sentenced to 10 days rigorous imprisonment and to be put onboard just prior to the ship sailing

30 April 1907 arrived at Natal from Colombo, Ceylon

4 May 1907 arrived at East London from Natal

1909 purchased by South African Collieries Ltd, Cape Town for £14,500 name unchanged aftr extensive repairs to her hull

9 August 1909 at Somerset Hospital, Cape Town 2nd Officer Alexander Pirie discharged dead – pneumonia

4 August 1914 requisitioned by the Admiralty for service as a Stores Carrier, name unchanged. Lieutenant Sydenham E Stubbs RNR appointed in command



Lieutenant Sydenham E Stubbs RNR


December 1914 returned to her owners

16 December 1914 at Kilindini stopped by HMS KINFAUNS CASTLE and boarded by the Officer of the Guard – allowed to proceed (source HMS KINFAUNS CASTLE’s ships log)





9 April 1915 sailed Cape Town

20 November 1915 stopped by HMS ORBITA while on passage from Cape Town to Durban – allowed to proceed (source HMS ORBITA’s ship log)





1916 purchased by A Capel, Cape Town for £65,000 name unchanged

31 March 1916 between Zanzibar and Durban sighted by HMS TRENT (source HMS TRENT’s ship log)

22 June 1916 sold for £65,000 to British buyers

19 August 1916 passed the Lloyds Signal Station on Flamborough Head sailing south

1917 owners became Arthur Capel & Co (London) Ltd, London and renamed Capelhall



SS Capelhall after being renamed

1918 sold to the Town Line (London) Ltd, London name unchanged for about £63,000

1919 owners became Henry W Renny, Dundee name unchanged

3 September 1919 sailed Barry Docks to Dakar

23 May 1920 sailed Hull to New York

26 October 1920 sailed New York to Cartagena

1924 purchased by Tsutsui Kiyomatsu , Kobe and renamed KITAKATA MARU

1931 owners became Tsutsui Seimatsu, Kobe name unchanged

1933 purchased by Shibaura Unyu KK, Kobe name unchanged.

1937 purchased by Nikka Kyosin kosi KK, Tokyo name unchanged

1941 owners became Toa Kyoshin Kosi KK, Tokyo name unchanged.

16 March 1942 attacked by US forces and damaged at 29.09N 122.07E while in convoy TAMO-49

25 May 1942 torpedoed and sunk by USS DRUM (SS228) (Lt.Cdr. Robert H. Rice USN) in position 34.58 N 140.04 E