Girish Mahajan (Editor)

HMS Ouse (1905)

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Name  HMS Ouse
Commissioned  September 1905
Launched  7 January 1905
Builder  Cammell Laird
Laid down  22 March 1904
Construction started  22 March 1904
Draft  2.36 m
Ordered  1903 – 1904 Naval Estimates
Out of service  Laid up in reserve 1919
Fate  22 October 1919 sold to J.H. Lee for breaking

HMS Ouse was a Laird type River-class destroyer ordered by the Royal Navy under the 1903 – 1904 Naval Estimates. Named after the River Ouse in north east England near the city of York, she was the first ship to carry this name in the Royal Navy.



She was laid down on 22 March 1904 at the Cammell Laird shipyard at Birkenhead and launched on 7 January 1905. She was completed in September 1905. As built, Ouse's armament was the same as the turtleback destroyers that preceded the Rivers, i.e. a gun armament of a single 12-pounder gun and five 6-pounder guns, and two 18-in torpedo tubes. Unlike some of the early River-class destroyers, Ouse's forward two six-pounders were mounted on the forecastle along with the 12-pounder, rather than on sponsons projecting over the ship's sides, which kept them out of spray and made them easier to operate. In 1906, as a result of Japanese experience during the Russo-Japanese War, the Admiralty decided to upgrade the armament of the Rivers by replacing the five 6-pounder naval guns with three lightweight 12-pounder 8 hundredweight (cwt) guns. Two would be mounted abeam at the foc'sle break and the third gun would be mounted on the quarterdeck. The class was refitted with the new armament during 1908.


After commissioning she was assigned to the East Coast Destroyer Flotilla of the 1st Fleet and based at Harwich.

On 27 April 1908 the Eastern Flotilla departed Harwich for live fire and night manoeuvres. During these exercises HMS Attentive rammed and sank HMS Gala then damaged HMS Ribble.

In April 1909 she was assigned to the 3rd Destroyer Flotilla on its formation at Harwich. She remained until displaced by a Basilisk-class destroyer by May 1912. She went into reserve assigned to the 5th Destroyer Flotilla of the 2nd Fleet with a nucleus crew.

On 30 August 1912 the Admiralty directed all destroyer classes were to be designated by letters starting with the letter 'A'. The ships of the River Class were assigned to the E Class.

World War I

In early 1914 when displaced by G Class destroyers she joined the 9th Destroyer Flotilla based at Chatham tendered to HMS St George. The 9th Flotilla was a patrol flotilla tasked with anti-submarine and couner mining patrols in the Firth of Forth area.

In August 1915 with the amalgamation of the 9th and 7th Flotillas she was deployed to the 7th Destroyer Flotilla based on the River Humber. She remained employed on the Humber Patrol participating in counter-mining operations and anti-submarine patrols for the remainder of the war.

On 28 August 1918 she depth charged the German submarine UC-70, which had been spotted and damaged by a Blackburn Kangaroo patrol aircraft of No. 246 Squadron RAF near Runswick Bay off the Yorkshire coast. UC-70 sank at position 54°32'N, 00°40'W with the loss of 31 officers and men.

On 29 September 1918, Ouse in conjunction with HMS Star depth charged the German submarine UB-115 to destruction off Sunderland. UB-115 sank at position 55°13'N 01°22'E with the loss of 39 officers and men.


In 1919 Ouse was paid off then laid up in reserve awaiting disposal. On 22 October 1919 she was sold to J.H. Lee for breaking at Dover.


HMS Ouse (1905) Wikipedia

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