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HMS Dryad (1893)
HMS Dryad underway
HMS Dryad underway in wartime grey paint
Career (UK)
Name: HMS Dryad
Builder: Chatham Dockyard
Laid down: 15 April 1893[1]
Launched: 22 November 1893
Commissioned: 21 July 1894[1]
Renamed: HMS Hamadryad in 1918
Fate: Broken up in 1920
General characteristics [1]
Class & type: Dryad-class torpedo gunboat
Tons burthen: 1070 tons
Length: 262 ft 6 in (80.0 m)
Beam: 30 ft 6 in (9.3 m)
Draught: 13 ft (4.0 m)
Installed power: 3,500 ihp (2,600 kW)
  • 2 × 3-cylinder vertical triple-expansion steam engines
  • Locomotive boilers
  • Twin screws
Speed: 18.2 kn (33.7 km/h)
Complement: 120
Armament: On conversion to a minesweeper in 1914 two torpedo tubes were removed

HMS Dryad was the name ship of the Dryad-class torpedo gunboats. She was launched at Chatham Dockyard on 22 November 1893,[2] the first of the class to be completed. She served as a minesweeper during World War I and was broken up in 1920.

Design[edit | edit source]

Ordered under the Naval Defence Act of 1889, which established the "Two-Power Standard", the class was contemporary with the first torpedo boat destroyers. With a length overall of 262 ft 6 in (80.01 m),[1] a beam of 30 ft 6 in (9.30 m)[1] and a displacement of 1,070 tons,[1] these torpedo gunboats were not small ships by the standard of the time; they were larger than the majority of World War I destroyers. Dryad was engined by Maudslay, Sons & Field with two sets of vertical triple-expansion steam engines, two locomotive-type boilers, and twin screws. This layout produced 3,500 indicated horsepower (2,600 kW),[1] giving her a speed of 18.2 knots (33.7 km/h).[1] She carried between 100 and 160 tons of coal and was manned by 120 sailors and officers.[1]

Armament[edit | edit source]

The armament when built comprised two QF 4.7-inch (12 cm) guns, four 6-punder guns and a single 5-barrelled Nordenfelt machine gun. Her primary weapon was five 18-inch (450-mm) torpedo tubes,[Note 1] with two reloads.[1] On conversion to a minesweeper in 1914 two of the five torpedoes were removed.[1]

HMS Dryad Floated at Chatham, 25th November 1893, by Miss Cecil Heneage, Daughter of Sir Algernon C F Heneage, KCB

History[edit | edit source]

Mediterranean service[edit | edit source]

On 14 January 1900 Dryad left Chatham for the Mediterranean in order to relieve Hussar, which returned to Devonport to pay off.[3]

Tender to the Navigation School[edit | edit source]

In 1906 she was chosen as the tender to the Navigation School, conducting navigation training of officers at sea. In due course her name came to be used for the Navigation School itself, and then for HMS Dryad, the shore establishment at Southwick House in Hampshire.

Wartime service as a minesweeper[edit | edit source]

By 1914 Dryad had been converted to a minesweeper and was operating in the North Sea from the port of Lowestoft.

Gunner Ernest Martin Jehan and three other gunners from Dryad were assigned to the Q-ship Inverlyon, with Jehan in command.[4] On 15 August 1915 they sank the German submarine UB-4 with gunfire.[4] Jehan was awarded the Distinguished Service Cross for his part in the action.[5]

Disposal[edit | edit source]

She was renamed Hamadryad in 1918 and was sold to H Auten & Co on 24 September 1920 for breaking.[1]

Notes[edit | edit source]

  1. British "18 inch" torpedoes were 17.72 inches (45.0 cm) in diameter

References[edit | edit source]

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