Warrior Class first class armoured cruisers

The Warrior Class first class armoured cruisers were the second ships of that type designed by Phillip Watts and corrected some of the problems in the earlier Duke of Edinburgh design.

The main change came with the secondary armament. The Duke of Edinburgh class ships had carried ten 6in guns in a central armoured battery that was of little use in rough weather. On the Warrior class ships these guns were replaced by four 7.5in guns, carried in two single turrets on each side of the ship, between the side 9.2in gun turrets.

This meant that all ten of the main guns were at least at main deck level, allowing them to be used in all but the roughest of seas.

Of the four ships in this class, two were lost during the First World War and one only days after the end of the war. HMS Natal was destroyed by an internal explosion while docked at Cromarty (31 December 1915). HMS Warrior was badly damaged on the first day of the battle of Jutland (31 May 1916) and sank while under tow on the following day. Finally HMS Cochrane ran aground on the Mersey three days after the armistice.

Plans of Warrior Class First Class Armoured Cruisers
Plans of Warrior Class First Class Armoured Cruisers

Displacement (loaded)


Top Speed


Armour – deck

1.5in over steering gear
1in main deck
1in over battery
0.75in lower deck

 - belt

6in amidships
3in forward

 - bulkheads


 - upper belt *


 - barbettes


 - turrets

7.5in front
5.5in sides
4.5in back

 - ammo tubes


 - conning tower



505ft 6in


Six 9.2in guns
Four 7.5in guns
Twenty six 3pdr quick firing guns
Three 18in submerged torpedoes.

Crew complement






Ships in class

HMS Achilles
HMS Cochrane
HMS Natal
HMS Warrior

Before the Battlecruiser - The Big Cruiser in the World’s Navies 1865-1910, Aidan Dodson. Looks at the development and careers of the ‘big cruiser’, the most heavily armed cruisers of the late 19th and early 20th centuries, and a type that eventually evolved in the battlecruiser. Covers the development of the type, its combat experience while still state of the art, its role in the First World War, as well as looking at the technical specifications of all of the ships that fell into this category (Read Full Review)
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* This was the 6in battery armour of the Duke of Edinburgh Class.

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

How to cite this article: Rickard, J (12 September 2007), Warrior Class first class armoured cruisers, http://www.historyofwar.org/articles/weapons_warrior_class_cruisers.html

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