HMS Swiftsure (08)

HMS Swiftsure (08)

HMS "Swiftsure" (pennant number 08) was a "Minotaur" class light cruiser of the Royal Navy. She was laid down by Vickers Armstrong at Newcastle-on-Tyne on 22 September 1941, launched on 4 February 1943 by Lady Wake-Walker and commissioned on 22 June 1944.

"Swiftsure" joined the Home Fleet on commissioning, and in 1944 she was assigned to the Eastern Fleet, where, in November 1944, she became a unit of the newly formed British Pacific Fleet. In the Pacific she participated in the Okinawa Campaign of March-May 1945 and in June took part in the carrier raid on Truk by the British Pacific Fleet as TG 111.2, with the cruisers shelling the islands. On 30 August 1945 this group re-entered Hong Kong and took the Japanese surrender there. HMS "Swiftsure" was at this time the flagship of the British Pacific Cruiser Squadron, and was selected by Admiral Cecil Harcourt to hoist his flag for the Japanese surrender.In 1946 she was the flagship of the 4th Cruiser Squadron and in 1951, she became the flagship of the 2nd Cruiser Squadron. In 1953 she was involved in a collision with the destroyer HMS "Diamond". She was repaired and returned to service, and in 1959 began a major refit at Chatham dockyard to bring her up to the standard of the later "Tiger class". Midway through the conversion, with her new bridge and lattice masts in place, the refit was cancelled and she was put up for disposal. Some reports say the refit was costing too much to produce an obsolete ship, whilst others give the reason that the damage suffered during her earlier collision with HMS "Diamond" had not been fully surveyed and only became apparent during the refit. Nothing could be done to remedy the situation, and work stopped immediately. Her sister HMS "Superb" which had been paid off into reserve pending a similar refit was also put up for disposal around the same time. She was eventually sold, arriving at the Inverkeithing yard of T. W. Ward on 17 October 1962 to be scrapped.


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