Requisitioned Auxiliary – Laertes




Official Number:                     120831 

Laid down:

Builder:                                     R & W Hawthorn, Leslie & Co Ltd, Hebburn

Pennant No:                            Y 2.68

Signal Letters:                         HBVR

Launched:                               22 November 1904

Into Service:                            18 November 1915

Out of service:                         1 August 1917

Fate:                                          Torpedoed and sunk


Items of historic interest involving this ship: –


Background Data:  One of a group of additional ships requisitioned for Admiralty service during WW1 to augment the ships of the RFA

Career Data:


22 November 1904 launched by R & W Hawthorn, Leslie & Co Ltd., Hebbun on Tyne as Yard Nr: 399 named LAERTES for Ocean Steamship Co Ltd., (A. Holt & Co., Managers) Liverpool

December 1904 completed as 1 of 3 sister ships for her owners

21 May 1905 having sailed from the River Clyde arrived at Adelaide

23 May 1905 sailed Adelaide for Melbourne arriving 25 May 1905

29 May 1905 arrived at Sydney, NSW

3 November 1906 sailed Glasgow for Las Palmas for bunkers arriving 10 December 1906

10 November 1906 sailed Las Palmas having bunkered

29 November 1906 rounded the Cape of Good Hope

1 January 1907 arrived at Sydney, NSW after calling at Adelaide and Melbourne

27 September 1907 sailed from Rangoon for Liverpool

28 February 1908 sailed from Swansea for Liverpool

1 April 1914 sailed Liverpool for Australian ports

19 June 1914 sailed Sydney, NSW for UK or continental ports

14 August 1914 berthed at Falmouth with a cargo of Australian wheat

28 August 1914 Petty Officer Stoker Ernest Edwin Taylor 29559 discharged dead. He is buried in Shotley (St Mary) Churchyard in RN plot 24

10 February 1915 escaped an attack by U.2 12 miles NE by E of Schouwen Bank. The ships Master Captain William Henry Propert was appointed as a Temporary Lieutenant Royal Naval Reserve in recognition for his gallant and spirited conduct in command of his unarmed ship when attacked by the gunfire and torpedo by an enemy submarine. His Officers each received a gold watch and each member of the crew received £3

18 November 1915 requisitioned for Admiralty service as initially an Ammuntion Carrier – name unchanged – initially deployed for service to Northern Russia

6 May 1916 Petty Officer Stoker William Thomas Punt DSM 302295 (CH) discharged dead. He is buried in Chatham (Maidstone Road) Cemetery in grave HH 921

10 May 1916 Stoker 1st Class E J W Clarke DSM 288430 (CH) discharged dead. He is buried in Ruckland (St. Olave) Churchyard

9 August 1916 deployment changed to that of an Expeditionary Force Trasport carrying munitions from the USA

25 November 1916 deployment further changed to bringing stores from Canada

16 January 1917 deployment further changed to bringing wheat from Australia

5 June 1917 deployment further changed back to brining stores from Canada

1 August 1917 torpedoed and sunk by UB-31 in the English Channel 1.25 miles SSW Prawle Point while on passage from Southampton to Montreal in ballast with the loss of 14 lives



Was the 2nd vessel to bear this name for her owners