HMS Ostrich (1900)

HMS Ostrich (1900) was a C class destroyer that served with the Eighth Destroyer Flotilla on the Firth of Forth in 1914-1918 and the Lowestoft Local Flotilla in 1918.

The Ostrich was ordered as part of the July 1898 supplement to the 1898-99 naval construction programme.

The Ostrich was launched on Thursday 22 March 1900.

The Ostrich carried out her gunnery and torpedo trials at Plymouth on Monday 15 October 1900.

On Wednesday 16 October 1901 the Ostrich suffered serious damage while returning to Devonport after a steam trial. She accidently rammed the hulk Monmouth, losing two funnels, the plating from her starboard bow, and one of her boats. 

Brassey’s Naval Annual of 1901 published some of her 1900 trial results. In one she averaged 30.113 knots at 6,311 ihp, using 2.208lb of coal per ihp per hour. In a second she averaged 30.161 knots at 6,172ihp.

Pre-war Career

In 1901-1905 the Ostrich was part of the Devonport Flotilla, one of three that contained the home based destroyers.

In April 1902 the Ostrich escorted the King as he visited Falmouth on the Royal Yacht. The Ostrich then continued on to Plymouth, while the Royal party went to the Isle of Wight.

The Ostrich was paid off at Devonport on 6 July 1903 and her crew used to commission the Skate on the following day,

In March 1904 the Ostrich was placed into the B Division of the Fleet Reserve at Devonport.

On 13 August 1904 the destroyer Decoy was lost in a collision with the Arun off the Scilly Islands. The Ostrich took part in the rescue operations, and was used to bring the Decoy’s commander, gunner and signalman back to Devonport.

In 1906-1906 the Ostrich was part of the 3rd Destroyer Flotilla of the Channel Fleet, at that time the main battleship force in Home Waters.

In 1907-1909 the Ostrich was part of the destroyer flotilla attached to the Channel Fleet, but by now the main battleship force was the Home Fleet, and the Channel Fleet flotillas had nucleus crews.

In 1909-1912 the Ostrich was part of the 4th Destroyer Flotilla at Portsmouth, attached to the 3rd Division of the Home Fleet, and only partly manned.

In mid-February 1909 the Ostrich and the Cheerful escorted the King and Queen as they crossed from Calais to Dover on the Royal Yacht, after a visit to Berlin.

In 1912-1913 the Ostrich was part of the 6th Destroyer Flotilla at Portsmouth, one of the Patrol Flotillas.

In 1913 the Ostrich moved to the Eighth Destroyer Flotilla at Chatham, another of the patrol flotillas.

In July 1914 she was part of the Eighth Patrol Flotilla at Chatham, part of the Second Fleet of the Home Fleet.

First World War

In August 1914 she had moved to the Eighth Patrol Flotilla’s new base on the Firth of Forth.

In November 1914 she was part of the Eighth Flotilla, and was one of four destroyers in the 2nd Division of the Out Patrol, which covered the area between St Abb’s Head and Gregness, on either side of the Firth of Forth.

In January 1915 she was part of the Eighth Destroyer Flotilla, a patrol flotilla

In June 1915 she was one of seven destroyers in the Eighth Destroyer Flotilla at Rosyth.

In January 1916 she was one of six destroyers in the Eighth Flotilla. All six had been equipped with submarine sweeps and were operating in pairs, with one pair patrolling off May Island, one pair at stand by at Queensferry and one pair resting.

In October 1916 she was one of seven destroyers in the Eighth Destroyer Flotilla on the Firth of Forth.

In January 1917 she was one of seven destroyers in the Eighth Destroyer Flotilla on the Firth of Forth

In June 1917 she was one of twenty three destroyers in the newly formed East Coast Convoys, Humber, formed as part of the general introduction of convoys in response to the success of unrestricted submarine warfare.

On 12 July she and the Thrasher were escorting a northbound convoy of eight ships when UC-55 managed to torpedo and sink the Balzac. The Thrasher dropped one depth charge, but the submarine escaped.

In January 1918 she was one of seven destroyers in the Eighth Destroyer Flotilla at Rosyth.

In June 1918 she was serving with the Eight Destroyer Flotilla, a patrol flotilla based at Rosyth.

In June 1918 the Ostrich was part of the Lowestoft Local Flotilla.

On 4-5 July 1918 the Ostrich helped with the salvage of the Norwegian barque Mentor. In September 1919 her crew was awarded naval salvage money for their efforts.
 
In November 1918 she was one of four destroyers from the Patrol and Escort forces based at Lowestoft.

The Ostrich was sold in April 1920.

Commander
-February 1909-: Lt and Commander F. F. Rose

Displacement (standard)

 375t

Displacement (loaded)

 420t

Top Speed

30 knots

Engine

 6,250ihp

Range

80 tons coal capacity (Brassey)

Length

 215.5ft oa
207.75ft pp

Width

21ft

Armaments

One 12-pounder gun
Five 6-pounder guns
Two 18in torpedo tubes

Crew complement

60 (Brassey)

Laid down

 28 June 1899

Launched

22 March 1900

Completed

December 1901

Broken Up

1920

British Destroyers From Earliest Days to the Second World War, Norman Friedman. A very detailed look at the design of British destroyers from their earliest roots as torpedo boat destroyers, though the First World War and up to the start of the Second World War, supported by vast numbers of plans and well chosen photographs [read full review]
cover cover cover

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

How to cite this article: Rickard, J (15 July 2019), HMS Ostrich (1900) , http://www.historyofwar.org/articles/weapons_HMS_Ostrich_1900.html

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