HMS Conquest

HMS Conquest was a Caroline class light cruiser that was badly damaged during the German raid on Lowestoft of 25 April 1916. She was commissioned into the 5th Light Cruiser Squadron of the Harwich Force in June 1915. There she took part in the hunt for the German mine layer Meteor of August 1915, and also accompanied British mine layers. She also accompanied the force that attacked the German Zeppelin base at Tondern in March 1916. That expedition saw the flagship of the squadron damaged and Conquest took over from March-April 1916.

Commodore Reginald Tyrwhitt (1870-1951)
Commodore
Reginald Tyrwhitt
(1870-1951)

On 25 April 1916 the Germans attacked Lowestoft. Tyrwhitt, with the Harwich cruisers, intercepted the German force, which included their battlecruisers, before they reached the coast, but was unable to lure them away. After the attack on the town, the German battlecruisers moved towards Yarmouth. Tyrwhitt attacked their light cruisers, forces the battlecruisers to turn back. When they appeared, Tyrwhitt was forced to flee back south. His squadron was under fire for 13 minutes, before the Germans ended the engagement and turned east for home. HMS Conquest was hit by a 12in salvo, which killed 25, wounded 13 and destroyed her aerials. However, she was still able to make 20kts, and escaped further damage.

She was back with the squadron by August, when the Harwich Force took part in the general fleet sortie triggered by a movement of the High Seas Fleet. During the sortie the Harwich Force was spotted by Zeppelin L 13. Conquest attempted to shoot her down, but without success.

During 1917 the Conquest took part in an unsuccesful attack on German destroyers (January), and sank the destroyer S 20 off the Belgian coast on 5 June during the raid on Ostend. Her war ended in July 1918 when she hit a mine and required repairs that took until April 1919 to complete.

After her repairs were completed, HMS Conquest joined the Nore reserve (1919-1922). From 1922-1927 she served as Senior Naval Officer’s ship in the 1st Submarine Flotilla of the Atlantic Fleet. From 1927-1928 she was in the Mediterranean, before re-entering the reserve.

Displacement (loaded)

4,733t

Top Speed

28.5kts

Armour – deck

1in

 - belt

3in-1in

 - conning tower

6in

Length

446ft

Armaments

Two 6in Mk XII guns
Eight 4in quick firing Mk IV guns
One 13pdr anti-aircraft gun
Four 3pdr guns
Four 21in above-water torpedo tubes

Crew complement

301

Launched

20 January 1915

Completed

June 1915

Sold for break up

1930

Captains

Farie
Backhouse
Henley

Flagship of

Commodore Tyrwhitt

Books on the First World War | Subject Index: First World War

How to cite this article: Rickard, J (24 October 2007), HMS Conquest , http://www.historyofwar.org/articles/weapons_HMS_Conquest.html

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