On The Slipway

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Gallery: HMS Rodney visits Oslo

This series of images was one of the more rewarding of date and place. The second image shows the building at right showing the Norwegian flag, but I could only be sure after I identified the building itself; this is the Dronningen restaurant in Oslo. I even found one shot of HMS Rodney in the Norwegian archives here taken on the 21st of June 1937 (Ballantynes books puts Rodney in Olso in July but the ship logs state the 21st to the 30th of June 1937). There is a small fair in the background, the Vi Kan Utstillingen, at left matching the location with the restaurant perfectly. Now, if this is a visit to Norway, than the third image shows King Haakon VII walking the deck with Admiral Backhouse, with Maud van Saksen-Coburg en Gotha between them in the sixth image. King Haakon VII has the same rank on his sleeves as the Admiral as he is an admiral in the Royal Navy, but usually wears the ranks of Admiral for the Royal Norwegian Navy (Link)

HMS Rodney showing her dress flags; the Olso city hall (rĂ„dhus) under construction is visible in the background. Note that the ship’s badge as visible on the tampions is also fitted to the rangefinder covers of A & B turrets; Nelson also had her badge in the same position.

This image shows Admiral Backhouse (presumably) on the bow of the Norwegian Royal barge Stjernen I.

Gallery: HMS Rodney visits Algiers

This is the first post of a series of HMS Rodney from an album I picked up on Ebay a while ago. The album had no text anywhere and only a few images had text on the back. Using Ballantyne’ s Rodney book and simply searching for images of the buildings in the background lead to the city of Algiers that Rodney visited from January 29th to February 6th 1937.

This image was also found in this newspaper confirming the location and date.

Another image of the crew touching up the paintwork was found here

Gallery: Euryalus

My next build will be HMS Prince of Wales in her disruptive camouflage scheme. For a while I was planning to build her alongside the Dido-class cruiser HMS Euryalus; they were part of the same group for a while and share a wide range of equipment, among others boats and launches, pompoms, and 5.25″ turrets, and, HMS Euryalus had an equally interesting disruptive camouflage scheme similar to HMS Prince of Wales’. I briefly collected images images of Dido’s and of HMS Euryalus, Cleopatra and Charybdis sharing the early-war camouflage pattern. This camouflage pattern is particular interest as fate would have it, from the roughly 15 images I found all images of Euryalus and Cleopatra are from the starboard side and all images of Charybdis are from the port side. I have been searching deliberately for images of the battle of the Sirte as I expected that would give the best chance of a shot of HMS Cleopatra during the battle; one image I first found in Haynes’ book is a dud as it is reversed, but eventual I found one. The pattern was completed and shown below, doodled into a drawing by Alan Raven, with some liberties taken here and there. A nice aerial show allowed for the deck pattern. As with HMS Prince of Wales, the colours used remain a point of discussion but at the moment(!) I’d guess MS1/B5/MS3/MS4/MS4a.

I needed an excuse to get both ships in the same frame, either exchanging mail or fuel, so I collected images on those subject as well, but meanwhile dropped the idea of building HMS Euryalus altogether and will am now planning to pair HMS Prince of Wales with USS McDougal, an exchange that at least actually happened. Pictures of Dido’s aren’t really scarce with many of them showing a cruiser entering or exiting the harbor of Valletta, Malta. I found one album of HMS Euryalus which was kinda nice, but not really. Some pictures you no doubt have seen earlier; I added a few other decent random shots of ships in her class.

HMS Sirius (1946)

HMS Euryalus (1947)

HMS Dido (1947)

HMS Euryalus (1948/49)

HMS Euryalus (1948/49) next to the Aviso Grille

HMS Euryalus (1948)

HMS Euryalus (1948/49)

HMS Euryalus (not dated)

HMS Euryalus (not dated)

HMS Euryalus (1951)

HSM Royalist (not dated)


I’ve been keeping a keen eye on Ebay for several years, looking for photographs or entire albums that can be of interest for my next modeling project (HMS Prince of Wales, and possibly Rodney in 2073). And I have to admit, I have been ‘sitting’ on them, only to post the occasional snippet in a blog post. I occasionally post an image here and there and recently found one shot I uploaded to Worldnavalships.com—from when the Special Warship Pictures thread was still ongoing—on reddit (here). Fine, anything you upload might be used without reference and even offered as a print on Ebay by the worst of the worst (See my ebay post here). Now, recently the Imperial War Museum have expanded their WWII online preview database tremendously; there are more than 600 shots of HMS King George V alone and I can distinctly remember having so few photographs when I built my KGV model in the pre-internet days. The IWM is unfortunately quite expensive but many archives offer their high-resolution images for free, even some that used to be expensive. And then there are several wonderful galleries by e.g. Rick Davis, or websites such as Brent Jones’ USS Astoria or Tracy White’s Researcher at Large, you know, the kind of contributions that made go fine! FINE! Let’s have a gallery..

A note on the images

Now, I host this tiny website myself at very low cost, so I decided to post relative small images (typically about 800 by 600 pixels) but in the highest quality I can manage. I have used my black-belt Photoshop-fu skills to remove scratches and blemishes, a process that can take more than an hour when the original has a lot of damage. I am a twenty-trick pony as far as Photoshop is concerned but it gets the job done. By running over the keyboard my cats actually taught me a few new tricks, as they tend to produce to most interesting and disturbing shortcut key combinations you need to undo. I realize that anything uploaded to the net is up for grabs, so I simply added a small watermark in the corner.

The first batch is a few shots of HMS Duke of York and HMS Anson prior and during breaking-up. It’s such a sad sight to see these ungentle giants being reduce to scrap and one wonders what it would have been like to walk their decks as a museum visitor. But then again, not being able to adds to my fascination of these historical warships and what life on these vessels was like; living memory for some but to me a distant past.

HMS Anson lying at anchor at Gareloch on the Clyde waiting for the breakers, watched from HMS Duke of York by her commander, Lieut. Neil Pascoe, with another large ship in the far background (possibly HMS King George V) , 1957.

The remainder of the images are postcards from the breakers yard at Faslane, dated 1958.

A very clear shot of the bridge superstructure of HMS Anson.

The rear of the bridge superstructure of HMS Anson, showing her Mk VI high-angle control directors with a type 275 radar, the only ship of the class thus fitted.

HMS Duke of York

HMS Anson

Once you start building funnels you simply cannot resist collecting any photograph that shows you the interior, especially not one as clear as this one. I think this particular shot made me buy the entire batch.

HMS Duke of York. I promise the other galleries will be less depressing. I have about a hundred images standing by and I’ll try adding a new post every month.

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