Aircraft Carrier HMS Hermes

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This is an old entry, but it might give some facts about the largest divable shipweck North of Arugam Bay:

HMS Hermes
Hermes-class aircraft carrier (1f/1m). L/B/D: 598 A?a?? 70 (90ew) A?a?? 21.5 (182.3m A?a?? 21.3m/27.4m A?a?? 6.6m). Tons: 12,900 disp. Hull: steel. Comp: 660. Arm : 15 aircraft; 6 A?a?? 5.5, 3 A?a?? 4, 4 A?a?? 3pdr. Armor: 3 belt, 1 deck. Mach: geared turbines, 40,000 shp, 2 screws; 25 kts. Built: Sir W. G. Armstrong, Whitworth & Co., Ltd., Newcastle-on-Tyne, Eng.; 1924.

Laid down at the beginning of 1918 and not completed until 1924, HMS Hermes was the first ship designed from the outset as an aircraft carrier and not converted from another design either on the ways or after launching. With a light, cruiserlike hull, she was relatively fast for her size and had an imposing island surmounted by a large tripod mast. Named for the messenger of the gods of Greek mythology, HMS Hermes was stationed in the Far East for virtually her whole career, except for two refits in 1927 and 1933-34. Recalled to the Home Fleet just prior to World War II, she remained in the Atlantic until 1942, when the Japanese began their push through Southeast Asia. Based at Ceylon, Hermes was damaged at Colombo on April 5, 1942, during a naval air attack launched from Japanese carriers. Two days later, she was at sea when dive-bombers from Akagi Hiryu Shokaku, and Zuikaku found her off Batticaloa; she was sunk in 7A?A?50N, 81A?A?49E with the loss of 307, the survivors being rescued by the hospital ship Vita. In addition to Hermes, the two Japanese attacks resulted in the loss of the cruisers HMS Dorsetshire and Cornwall, destroyers HMS Tenedos and RAN Vampire, the corvette HMS Hollyhock and armed merchant cruiser Hector. Price of clarinex

3 Responses to “Aircraft Carrier HMS Hermes”

  • Thank you Roland,
    For this interesting link.

    The dive report ends with the following sentence:

    (I quote)
    “The Hermes is named after the mythological Grecian god of boundaries and of the travelers who cross them.

    To cross this boundary is a life time experience. But It is indeed a boundary to be crossed with great care.

    And, as it often holds true for some boundaries; to cross this boundary is never to return…

    For after diving the Hermes, you are irrevocably changed for ever.”

    (end of Quotation)

    What seems obvious, appears to have escaped the attention of some know-it-alls. Many guys, who always only holiday in the Tourist zones of the South and West, talk as if they have actually been there, down there or indeed anywhere near Battiacaloa or even near the East Coast at all.
    I am, still here, in the neglected East, and my own life has irrevocably been changed for ever.
    I therefore fully endorse Mr. Felican Fernando’s above statement.
    And I keep out of any discussions whenever I don’t know my subject.

  • Here you will find some very impressive and beautiful pictures:

  • For anyone who is interested in further details:

    HMS Hermes
    January 15, 1918-The keel of the Hermes is laid down by Armstrong Whitworth.
    September 11, 1919-The Hermes is launched and leaves for Davenport for completion.

    July 7, 1923-The Hermes is commissioned and undergoes shakedown trials and training.

    September 22, 1933-The Hermes enters drydock for modernization and refitting.

    November 1, 1934-The Hermes finishes refitting and embarks on trials again, then is ordered to report to China Station.

    May 20, 1937-The Hermes is decommissioned and placed in reserve, used only as a training vessel.

    August 1939-The Hermes is recommissioned.

    September 3, 1939-The Hermes is positioned off the southwest approaches to guard the British Home Fleet through the next two weeks.

    October 5, 1939-The Hermes operates with the Neptune and the French battleship Strasbourg near the West Indies.

    November 6 through December 2, 1939-The Hermes patrols near Dakar with the French cruisers Foch and Dupleix.

    1940-The Hermes is involved in a collision with the Corfu, forcing the carrier to enter repairs in South Africa lasting until May 1940, followed by brief training..

    June 7, 1940-The Hermes rendezvous with a convoy consisting of the Empress of Canada, Queen Mary, Mauretania, Empress of Britain, Andes, and Aquitania. These ships are escorted by the Shropshire and Cumberland, with the carrier providing further protection until June 10.

    June 23, 1940-The Hermes rendezvous with the British Shropshire off Dakar.

    July 5, 1940-The Hermes and Australian Australia meet British Dorsetshire after departing Freetown.

    July 7, 1940-The Hermes issues the French Richelieu and other ships based at Dakar an ultimatum to surrender or else the trio of ships would attack. When the French refuse to allow the ultimatum to be delivered by blocking the sloop Milford from entering, the carrier launches air attacks during the night, dropping depth charges on Richelieu, and then further damaging the ship by one torpedo strike scored by later torpedo attacks.

    July 8, 1940-The Hermes departs Dakar during the early morning, evading French efforts for a retaliatory strike.

    December 18, 1940-The Hermes and cruiser Dragon are launched in response to a distress signal from the refrigerator ship Duquesa, which is quickly boarded by the German cruiser Admiral Scheer. The search produces no results and the ships are ordered back shortly afterwards.

    February 10, 1941-The Hermes is ordered to the Indian Ocean to join Force T.

    February 12, 1941-The Hermes launches aircraft to scout the Indian Ocean. These aircraft report five Italian ships of over 28,000 tons, and the ships are captured by the cruiser Hawkins, which then moves to capture the five vessels.

    February 22, 1941-The Hermes departs with the cruiser Capetown. The pair of ships launch an uneventful search to re-locate the Admiral Scheer .

    April 28, 1941-The Hermes and cruiser Enterprise are held on alert in the Persian Gulf until a second troop convoy arrives to quell an Iraqi uprising which began April 7.

    March 31, 1942-The Hermes and destroyer Vampire are launched as part of a response to Japanese air strikes on Ceylon.

    April 4, 1942-The Hermes arrives at Trincomalee.

    April 9, 1942-The Hermes is ordered to attempt an evacuation of Trincomalee, leaving to the south. They are spotted, despite attempts by Bristol Blenheim bombers to distract the Japanese. Early in the morning, 80 Japanese dive bombers from the Hiryu, Soryu, and Akagi attack and manage to sink the Hermes and Vampire, as well as one corvette and two tankers, but allowing the hospital ship to escape without attempting to bomb it. The carrier sank 70 miles south of Trincomalee after having attempted to pass along the coastline.


    Maximum Displacement: 13, 200 tons
    Top Speed: 25 knots
    Overall length: 600 feet
    Beam: 71 feet, 3 inches

    20-Aircraft (Pre-War)
    12-Aircraft (Wartime)
    10-5.5 inch, 50 caliber guns (Reduced to 6 in 1934)
    3-4 inch anti-aircraft guns
    8-50 caliber anti-aircraft guns (Added in 1934)

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