Official Number
"Strath" Class
Yard Number: 607
Official Number: 144415

Conmpletion Date: 16.06.1917
Date of Build/Launch: 15.07.1917

Owner: The Lord Commissioners for the Admiralty
Vessel Type: Fishing vessel, trawler, side, steam, screw, steel.

Engine Details: Steam by screw, inverted, surface condensing, triple expansion, 12” x 20” x 34” with 24” stroke, 59 r.h.p., 499 i.h.p. by Hall, Russell.

Boiler: By G. Clark Ltd., Sunderland to their own design
(12’ 9” x 10’ 9” in pencil)

Diameter: 8’- 4”
Type: solid
Material: Cast iron by Abernethy, Ferryhill Foundry.

Cost & Extras (£): £11,279.10.0

Disposal: Sank after collision
Date 12.05.1942
Location: Tyne. Half a mile east of the Souter Point lighthouse, near Whitburn

Renamed: DORILEEN (1920); BEN ARDNA (1923)

History, Comments & Sources:

Named for John Bradford, Private, Marine, H.M.S. Victory.

John Bradford (non-standard), 3647 | 607, Hall Russell, Aberdeen, 25/4/1917 | 6/1917, sold 7/1920

25.04.1917 Launched. Fitted listening hydrophones.
Twin launch with the WILLIAM BARLOW. (NP)
06.1917 Completed. Ad. No. 3647. (NP)
28.11.1918 WALTON, Laverick (37), Trimmer, RNR, TS 788. Died, illness.
Haslar Royal Naval Cemetery.
07.1920 Registered at London for commercial sale. (NP)
07.1920: Sold to Mercantile.
1920 Owners R. Irvin Jnr. of N. Shields and renamed DORILEEN.
Registered at Aberdeen A.412 (CS)
1920 LR 77709 Entry in supplement.
owner R, Irvin & Sons, North Shields.
1923 Vessel was sold by the Admiralty to Owners Richard Irvin & Sons Ltd., Aberdeen. BEN ARDNA (A412). (CS)
08.1939 Requisitioned by Admiralty and taken up by the Navy and employed as an
Examination vessel in the Tyne area. (CS)
12.05.1942 Lost in collision on the Tyne. (NH)

History (CS): - http://www.clydeships.co.uk/view.php?year_built=&builder=&ref=51966&vessel=JOHN+BRADFORD
History (NP): - http://www.navypedia.org/ships/uk/brit_o_esc_strath.htm

Record of Loss (NH): - http://www.naval-history.net/WW2BritishLossesbyDate2.htm
Wrecksite (correct vessel): - http://www.castandcatch.com/forum/viewtopic.php?p=175756
Wrecksite (wrong vessel recorded): - http://www.wrecksite.eu/wreck.aspx?169138

Note: Considerable confusion is possible between the WILLIAM BARLOW (606), Official No. 144416 and the JOHN BRADFORD (607), Official No. 144415. One reason can be found in the Lloyd Registersupplement which show this vessel called BEN ARDNA, ex DORILEEN, ex JOHN BRADFORD.

Does anyone know if there is a hill called Ben Ardna?

The first BEN ARDNA was a steam trawler, launched by Hall, Russell & Co. Ltd. at Aberdeen on the 9th December 1912. She was built at a cost of £5,950 for one of Aberdeen’s leading trawlowning firms, Richard Irvin and Sons Ltd. of Albert Quay, and was registered in Aberdeen with the number A 517 on Boxing Day 1912.
She did not have a long career in fishing, as in August 1914, along with another twenty-seven of Richard Irvin’s fleet, she was requisitioned by the Admiralty and put to work as a minesweeper with the Dover Patrol.
As with her fishing career, her naval career was also short lived. On the 8th August 1915, off the Elbow Buoy at the mouth of the River Tay, she suffered the fate of many other trawlers engaged in minesweeping, and detonated a mine which had been laid by the German submarine UC.1.
She sank with the loss of two of her Royal Naval Reserve crew: -
William Harwood Brown, a Second Hand aged 35, the son of Mrs Mary Duck of Scarborough.
Henry Herbert Morris, a Deckhand and husband of Mrs Helen Taylor of Aberdeen.

The second and third BEN ARDNAs were both wartime “Strath” class trawlers.
These standard trawlers were built in large numbers during WWI throughout the U.K. and by various shipyards, but all were based on a standard design for both the hull and machinery produced by Hall, Russell, who took the lead in their production. At the end of the war, the Admiralty had no use for these large numbers of basic minesweepers and in the early 1920s they were sold off for commercial use as either trawlers or small cargo vessels.

In 1920, Richard Irvin bought two of these vessels to replace the company’s war losses, the WILLIAM BARLOW and the JOHN BRADFORD. These were exact sister ships, built by Hall, Russell and launched on the same day, the 15th July 1917, as Yard Nos 606 and 607.
The Strath Class were all named after members of the crew of either H.M.S. Victory or Royal Sovereign at the Battle of Trafalgar, and both William Barlow and John Bradford were Privates in the Marines on H.M.S. Victory.

The William Barlow was first registered by the Admiralty at London, with the Official Number 144416, but when she was bought by Richard Irvin, they registered her in Aberdeen under the ownership of R. Irvin & Sons Ltd, North Shields. The Lloyds Register Supplement entry (78525) for 1920 lists her as being named the DORILEEN, ex BEN ARDNA, ex WILLIAM BARLOW. This vessel remained in the Irvin fleet until she was broken up in 1957.

The John Bradford was also registered by the Admiralty at London, with the Official Number 144415, and bought by Richard Irvin. Her entry in the Lloyds Register Supplement for 1920 (77709) records her being named BEN ARDNA, ex DORILEEN, ex JOHN BRADFORD. She to was registered at Aberdeen, with the fishing number A412 and remained in Irvin’s fleet until requisitioned as an examination vessel in WWII. She sank in 1942 after a collision on the Tyne, fortunately without loss of life.

Thus, both vessels were, according to Lloyds, named BEN ARDNA, but they changed names. Why, in the case of the DORILEEN, Irvin departed from their usual practice of naming all their ships with the prefix BEN, or who, what or where the name Dorileen came from, is not recorded and remains a mystery.

Article from G.W.

Hall, Russell & Company, Limited
length 122 1/3' x breadth 22 1/12' x depth 13 3/12'
Gross Tonnage: 226 ton
NRT: 88

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