Royal Sovereign Class Battleship

World War 1 Naval Combat

World War 1 Naval Combat

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HMS Royal Soverign Royal Sovereign Class.  When new this class set a new standard for battleship design and the basic format remained largely unchanged until HMS Dreadnought. A half sister to the class, HMS Hood, was built but with low mounted turrets instead of the high freeboard and barbette mounted weapons of the rest of the class.  The comparison between the two versions was very much in favour of the higher freeboard design.

HMS Royal Sovereign
Built Portsmouth Dockyard, laid down September 1889, completed May 1892, cost 913,986.

HMS Ramillies
Built Portsmouth Dockyard, laid down August 1890, completed October 1893, cost 980,895.

HMS Royal Oak
Built Pembroke Dockyard, laid down May 1890, completed June 1894, cost 977,996.

HMS Repulse
Built Chatham Dockyard, laid down January 1890, completed April 1894, cost 915,302.

HMS Revenge (renamed Redoubtable 1915)
Built Thomson, Clydebank, laid down February 1891, completed March 1894, cost 954,825.

HMS Resolution
Built Portsmouth Dockyard, laid down June 1890,completed December 1895, cost 953,817.

HMS Empress of India
Built Pembroke Dockyard, laid down July 1889, completed August 1893, cost 912,162.

Size:
Length 410 feet 6 inches overall, beam 75 feet, draught 28 feet, displacement 14,262 load 14,860 tons deep..

Propulsion:
2 shaft Vertical Triple Expansion, 9,000 ihp, 16kts

Armour:
18-14in belt, 17-11in barbettes, 3-2.5in decks.

Armament:
4 x 13.5in 30 cal BL (2 x 2), 10 x 6in 40 cal QF (12 x 1), 16 x 6pounder QF (16 x 1), 12 x 3pounder (12 x 1), 7 x 18in TT

Comments:
At the time the best all round battleships in the world with a significant increase in freeboard giving them good sea going and capabilities and enabling them to fight in rougher weather than earlier ships.   The ships were also faster and better protected than previous ships with a strong secondary armament although they were also 4000 tons larger.  Crew 670.

World War 1 Service:
Royal
Sovereign
1913 sold for scrap.

Ramillies
1913 sold for scrap.

Royal Oak
1914 sold for scrap.

Repulse
1911 sold for scrap.

Revenge (renamed Redoubtable 1915)
At start of war laid up ready for disposal.
September-October 1914 refitted at Portsmouth for bombardment off the Flanders coast.
4 November 1914 joined 6th Battle Squadron of the Channel Fleet for bombardment duties.
22 November 1914 bombardment of German positions near Nieuport.
15 December 1914 hit by German shell fire.
16 December 1914 bombarded Flanders coast.
April-May 1915 refitted at Chatham during which bulges were fitted.
August 1915 renamed Redoubtable to release name for new battleship.
7 September 1915 bombarded Ostend.
October-December 1915 refit after which was used as an accommodation ship.
1919 sold for scrap.

Resolution
1914 sold for scrap.

Empress of India
1913 sunk as target.

HMS Revenge in 1914.  The only ship in the class to service in World War 1 she was fitted with protective bulges, minesweeping equipment on her bow and her guns were relined to fire modern 12 inch shells.  The limited elevation of the guns meant the ship had to be given an artificial list for bombardment duties which was achieved by flooding one of the bulges. HMS Revenge

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