Requisitioned Auxiliary – Sorrento




Official Number:                       133382

Laid down:

Builder:                                   Earles Co Ltd., Hull 

Launched:                               8 March 1912

Into Service:                            2 August 1914

Out of service:                         22 March 1915

Fate:                                      Wrecked 2 February 1944


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:

8 March 1912 launched by Earles Co Ltd., Hull as Yard Nr: 585 named Sorrento for T Wilson Son & Co Ltd., Hull

May 1912 completed

13 August 1913 at sea Carpenter Frank Hardouin discharged dead having fallen down the hold

2 August 1914 requisitioned for Admiralty service as a Stores Carrier, name unchanged – appointed as Flotilla Supply Ship No.1

7 August 1914 commissioned as HMS Sorrento with Lieutenant Charles H Woldorf RNR appointed in command and Engineer John Dobson RNR appointed as Chief Engineer Officer

15 August 1914 berthed at Sheerness

16 August 1914 sailed Sheerness arriving at Harwich later the same day

17 August 1914 discharging cargo

18 September 1914 at Harwich loading stores from MFA Stork (q.v)

14 October 1914 at Harwich Ship’s Cook J W Tindale paid off for wilfull disobedience and incompetence

6 December 1914 at Harwich MFA Empress berthed alongside

8 December 1914 at Harwich MFA Empress sailed

30 December 1914 at Harwich Stoker P Burns overstayed his leave by 36 hours – sentenced to 12 days loss of pay and rum stopped

5 January 1915 at Harwich Stoker A Clarke overstayed his leave by 18 hours – sentenced to 6 days loss of pay. Stoker H Edwards overstayed his leave by 22 hours – sentenced to 8 days loss of pay

11 January 1915 at Harwich MFA Stork berthed alongside

23 February 1915 at Harwich MFA Stork moved from alongside and berthed further along the quay

26 February 1915 at Harwich MFA Stork berthed alongside

27 February 1915 at Harwich collier Thames berthed alongside and supplied 153 tons of bunkers

10 March 1915 sailed Harwich to Sheerness and berthed there later the same day

16 March 1915 sailed Sheerness to Erith Reach

17 March 1915 moved from Erith Reach to Woolwich Buoys

19 March 1915 at Woolwich Buoys ss Elswick Grange berthed alongside

20 March 1915 sailed Woolwich Buoys to Deptford Dry Dock

22 March 1915 sailed Deptford Dry Dock to south West India Docks and berthed outboard of ss River Thames

26 March 1915 returned to owners

1916 owners purchased by Sir John Ellerman and new owners were styled as Ellerman’s Wilson Line, name unchanged

26 March 1916 at Avonmouth Fireman James Coates discharged dead having drowned

30 March 1916 at Avonmouth Able Seaman Norman McLeod discharged dead having drowned

19 May 1918 at 1.49N 1.49W Fireman William Warrington discharged dead – cause of death not shown

1 June 1918 at Dakar sailed in convoy with 10 other ships and escorted by the Armed Merchant Cruiser HMS MACEDONIA

24 February 1919 berthed at Liverpool from Barry, South Wales with one passenger. Captain John Howgate was the ship’s Master

9 October 1919 at Genoa Fireman William Singleton discharged dead having drowned

4 January 1925 berthed at Hull

3 April 1925 sailed Venice

4 May 1925 arrived at Venice

3 April 1926 a fire was discovered in a hold while on passage from Hull while some 50 miles off Brest, France. Berthed at Brest for repairs  

9 April 1926 sailed Brest for Palermo

28 March 1927 berthed at Albert Dock, Hull with two workman employed on a stage on the hull of the ship –


Press Cutting from Hull Daily Mail of the 28 March 1927


25 July 1927 arrived at Venice

10 January 1930 sailed Malta for London

7 March 1930 arrived Gibraltar sailing for Malta the same day

12 March 1930 arrived Malta sailing for Piraeus the same day

3 May 1930 sailed Gibraltar

10 May 1930 berthed at Albert Dock, Hull

11 June 1930 entered William Wright Dry Dock at Hull

1938 purchased for £12,000 by Palestine Maritime Lloyd (Cyprus) Ltd., (Palestine Maritime Lloyd Ltd, Managers) Haifa and renamed Miriam

February 1940 requisitioned by the MoWT (W. H. Muller & Co (London) Ltd., London

7 November 1942 sailed Loch Ewe in convoy WN358 to Methil arriving 9 November 1942. RFA OLIGARCH also was part of this convoy

24 November 1942 sailed Methil in convoy EN166 to Holyhead arriving 26 November 1942

28 November 1942 sailed Holyhead in convoy HM75 to Milford Haven arriving 29 November 1942

30 November 1942 sailed Milford Haven in convoy KX7 to Seville and Gibraltar arriving 8 December 1942

7 January 1943 sailed Lisbon in convoy MKS5 but had to return to Lisbon after straggling

7 February 1943 sailed Gibraltar joining convoy MKS7 to Liverpool arriving 17 February 1943

31 March 1943 sailed the River Clyde in convoy MKS12G to Tangier and Gibraltar arriving 12 April 1943

10 June 1943 sailed Gibraltar in convoy MKS14G to Liverpool arriving 21 June 1943

4 July 1943 sailed Liverpool in convoy OS51KM to Lisbon. The convoy split on 13 July 1943. RFA DINGLEDALE was an escort oiler in this convoy. HMS PROSPEROUS (later to become RFA PROSPEROUS) was the rescue tug in this convoy

29 July 1943 sailed Gibraltar in convoy KMS21 to Algiers arriving 31 July 1943

21 August 1943 sailed Algiers and joined convoy KMS23 to Malta arriving 24 August 1943

30 September 1943 sailed Bizerta and joined convoy MKS26 to Algiers arriving 2 October 1943. RFA DERWENTDALE also sailed in this convoy

22 October 1943 sailed Algiers and joined convoy KMS29 to Malta arriving 26 October 1943. HMS OCEAN SALVOR (later to become RFA OCEAN SALVOR) and HMS PRINCE SALVOR (later to become RFA PRINCE SALVOR) were also in this convoy

29 November 1943 sailed Augusta in convoy AH10A to Taranto arriving 30 November 1943

30 December 1943 sailed Bari in convoy HA15 to Augusta arriving 1 January 1944

1 February 1944 sailed Augusta in convoy AH22

2 February 1944 was wrecked 5 miles south of Taranto having lost her convoy in thick fog while on passage from Augusta to Brindisi with a cargo of automobile engines and general stores