1⁄350Building The HMS Mary Rose, 1916
The vessel. . .
At the beginning of World war One Royal Navy destroyer design had evolved into a general configuration that would remain essentially unchanged until the 1960’s. The ‘M’ class were ordered in 1913/14 - as an improvement on the preceding ‘L’ class having an additional 6 knots added to the top speed at the insistence of the then First Sea Lord of the Admiralty Winston Churchill.
The class numbered 13 vessels-all of which varied slightly in machinery configuration as well as dimensions – dependant on where they were built! Fundamentally a successful design the order was repeated for another 87 boats-including some 11 specials .even among the ‘ standard’ boats there were some significant visual differences , various machinery installations- two or three shafts; geared and non-geared turbines which resulted in differing stem and stern shapes.
On all the vessels the Stem was double thickness casting to facilitate the ramming of U-boats if the opportunity presented itself. Overall a successful design, but as the hulls were not galvanised to allow for a quicker combined with their arduous service they were worn out at the end of the war; few survived the mass scrapping of 1921
With war imminent, speed of delivery of these vessels was of great importance, with Mary Rose being launched on 08 October 1915, whereupon she joined the Grand Fleet the following year. She was present at the Battle of Jutland and continued on with Grand Fleet service until October 1917. Thereafter she and another destroyer’ HMS Strongbow, were escorting a Scandinavian convoy in the North Sea and were intercepted by two German light cruisers, SMS Brummer and SMS Bremse.
Despite being seriously outgunned the two destroyers turned to attack their enemy, but the odds were heavily against them and Strongbow was put out of action by the first German salvo, sinking three hours later. With a gunnery duel appearing hopeless Mary Rose tried to get into position for a torpedo attack, but the German gunnery proved to be devastatingly accurate and she was sunk by gunfire before being able to fire her torpedoes. The unprotected convoy was now at the mercy of the cruisers who proceeded to sink nine of the twelve ships…
Specifications. . .
Displacement 1025 - 1250 tons (deep load)
3 x geared turbines
25,940 shp =34 knots
3 x 4” Mk IV QF
2 x 2pdr pom-poms
4 x 21” TT
Crew-80 ttl. officers and men
Building the model. . .
. . .was happily a pretty straightforward procedure!
Released around 1999, this White Ensign Models resin kit is now of the ‘older’ resin generation….The kit I built is from the ‘last-ever’ production run.
Nevertheless, the casting was sharp and the original mastering crisp. The kit was designed with a split hull allowing waterline and full-hull options. Although I wished to portray the ship afloat; having decided at the outset that I wanted my Mary Rose to show some lower hull in a long rolling swell-the inspiration coming from the front cover of the Anthony Preston Book, “V & W class destroyers”.
This was the first time I had ever joined an upper and lower resin hull-I was delighted with the excellent fit--requiring virtually no filler and only a slight paring away of the lower hull at the stern. The completed hull was then ground away in the appropriate areas using my belt sander so that the total height above the baseboard was not excessive.
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