Allied Warships


River class

1 ship

Technical information

Displacement1370 BRT 
Length301 feet 
Complement140 men 
ArmamentOriginal design;
2 x 4inch guns (2x1)
10 x 20m guns (2x2,6x1) 
Max speed20 knots
Engines2 shaft Reciprocating (4 cyl. V.T.E.)

HMS Cam, HMS Chelmer, HMS Ettrick, HMS Helmsdale and HMS Tweed 2 shaft Geared Turbines 

PowerI.H.P. 5.500

HMS Cam, HMS Chelmer, HMS Ettrick, HMS Helmsdale and HMS Tweed S.H.P. 6.500 

Notes on class

Commonwealth frigates were specifically designed as anti-submarine escorts for trans-Atlantic convoys. River class frigates offered the size, speed, and endurance of escort sloops using inexpensive reciprocating machinery of corvettes. River class were designed for North Atlantic weather conditions and included the most effective anti-submarine sensors and weapons.

HMS Rother and HMS Spey were launched in late 1941, and Canadian and Australian construction continued through 1944. Early River class units were available for the turning point convoy battles of the winter of 1942-43. River class frigates generally replaced the old Town and V&W class destroyers which had been assigned to ocean escort groups.

Ten River class frigates were built for the United States in Canada. Two were commissioned in 1942 as USS Asheville (PF-1) and USS Natchez (PF-2), they were armed with U.S.N. pattern 3"/50 AA guns. The other eight were released under lend-lease for use by Commonwealth forces.


Royal Dutch Navy Royal Dutch Navy ships of the River class

To see all River class ships click here.

HNMS Johan Maurits van Nassau (ii) (K 251)

1 Frigate of the River class.

See all Royal Dutch Navy Frigate classes.

River class ships hit by U-boats (9)

4 Oct 1944HMCS ChebogueTotal lossU-1227
11 Dec 1943HMS CuckmereTotal lossU-223
23 Sep 1943HMS ItchenSunkU-666
20 Sep 1943HMS LaganTotal lossU-270
14 Oct 1944HMCS MagogTotal lossU-1223
15 Jun 1944HMS MourneSunkU-767
29 Mar 1945HMCS TemeTotal lossU-315
7 Jan 1944HMS TweedSunkU-305
7 May 1944HMCS ValleyfieldSunkU-548

HMCS Swansea

McKee, Fraser M.

Books dealing with this subject include:

HMCS Swansea, McKee, Fraser M., 1994

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