HMS Test (1905)

HMS Test (1905) was a River class destroyer that served with the Ninth Destroyer Flotilla in 1914-15, taking part in the attempt to stop the Hartlepool raid, and the Seventh Destroyer Flotilla in 1915-1918.

The Stour and the Test were built ‘on-spec’ by Cammell Laird in 1905. The company attempted to sell them overseas, but these efforts failed. In 1908 the company offered them to the Admiralty at their original price, but by this point the River class was already seen as outdated. However two of the original River class ships, the Gala and Blackwater, had already been lost, so the Admiralty decided to buy the two Cammell Laird ships for a lower price of £50,000 each.

In 1909-1911 the Test was one of seven River class destroyers in the 2nd Destroyer Flotilla, part of the 2nd Division of the Home Fleet. This was a front line force and its destroyers were fully manned.

In 1911-12 the Test was part of the 3rd Destroyer Flotilla on the Nore, which was made up of twenty-three River class destroyers and was part of the 3rd Division of the Home Fleet. This contained the older battleships and the destroyers were all partly manned.

In 1912-14 the Test was one of twenty five River class destroyers that formed the 9th Destroyer Flotilla on the Nore, one of the new Patrol Flotillas.

First World War

In July 1914 she was one of sixteen River class destroyers in the Ninth Flotilla at Chatham.

In August 1914 she was one of six destroyers from the Ninth Flotilla that were reported to be at sea at the outbreak of war.

In November 1914 she was part of the Ninth Flotilla, but she was undergoing repairs at Pembroke Dock.

The Moy took part in the clash with German battlecruisers Seydlitz and Moltke and the heavy cruiser Blucher during the Hartlepool raid of 16 December 1914. She was one of four destroyers that were detached to Hartlepool (Waveney, Doon, Test and Moy), and were already at sea when the Germans appeared off the town. On 0828 she signaled that she was ‘In action with two Dreadnoughts’, and during the encounter she suffered minor damage from German gunfire, although didn’t suffer any casualties.

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

On 26 March 1915 the Test picked up a German torpedo five miles to the east of Blyth, probably one of two fired by U-23 that were reported not to have exploded.

In June 1915 she was one of ten River class destroyers in the Ninth Destroyer Flotilla on the Tyne.

By November 1915 she was listed as part of the Seventh Destroyer Flotilla, normally based on the Humber.

In January 1916 she was one of eight destroyers from the Seventh Flotilla that were based on the Tyne, north of the Flotilla’s main base on the Humber.

In October 1916 she was one of nineteen destroyers in the Seventh Flotilla, a mix of River class boats and older 30-knotters.

On 11 December 1916 the merchant ship SS Nora, carrying a load of timber, hit a newly laid mine off Flamborough Head. The explosion was witnessed from the Ness, and her commander ordered the Test to head north and the Panther to head south to divert any oncoming traffic from the new minefield.

In January 1917 she was one of eighteen destroyers in the Seventh Flotilla.

In May 1917 the Test was part of the escort of a north bound convoy off the east coast. On 7 May UC-51 found the convoy and sank the SS Tore Jarl. The Test was only 1,200 yards away at the time, but despite running up the starboard side of the convoy with her anti-submarine sweep deployed was unable to find the submarine.

In June 1917 she was one of twenty three destroyers in a new formation, East Coast Convoys, Humber, that was formed around the Seventh Flotilla to help run the new convoy system.

In January 1918 she was one of twenty seven destroyers in the Seventh Destroyer Flotilla, based on the Humber.

In June 1918 she was one of twenty five destroyers in the Seventh Destroyer Flotilla on the Humber, a mix of River class and 30-knotters.

In November 1918 she was one of twenty seven destroyers serving with the Seventh Destroyer Flotilla, which included ten River Class destroyers that were part of the flotilla and two borrowed from Portsmouth.

Commanders
Lt & Commander Charles H. Knox-Little: 24 August 1912-January 1914-
Lt in Command John E. Haswell: 28 June 1918-Febuary 1919-

Displacement (standard)

550t

Displacement (loaded)

620t

Top Speed

25.5knots

Engine

2-shaft Parsons turbines
7,000shp

Range

 

Length

220ftpp

Width

23ft 6in

Armaments

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

Crew complement

70

Laid down

 

Launched

6 May 1905

Completed

 

Sold for break up

August 1919

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

 

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How to cite this article: Rickard, J (pending), HMS Test (1905), http://www.historyofwar.org/articles/weapons_HMS_Test_1905.html

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