HMAS Hobart

The HMAS Hobart (D63) was named after the city of Hobart light cruiser of the Royal Australian Navy during World War II. She was one of three Modified Leander class cruisers, which were built for the Royal Navy and given the late thirties to the Australian Navy.



The cruiser was on 15 August 1934 set in Devonport on keel, which launched on 9 Oktober 1934. On 13 January 1936 he was placed as HMS Apollo of the Royal Navy into service. He was one of three modified cruiser of the Leander class in which, unlike the previous units, the engine and boiler rooms were again arranged in the usual warships alternating order, which could be seen (one per boiler) externally to the two chimneys. In the first ships of the class, the boiler rooms were next to each other at a single large chimney, followed by the two adjacent machinery spaces. The alternating arrangement of the rooms has ensured that a single hit at the interface of two departments in the chimney or not by loss of all boiler or engine rooms could turn the entire drive at once.


From October 1936 to October 1938, the Apollo was stationed in the North Atlantic and in the Caribbean, before he was sold to the Royal Australia Navy in 1938. Australia paid a portion of the purchase price by itself the aircraft carrier HMAS Albatross transferred to the Royal Navy. The cruiser was on 6 October passed in Devonport to Australia in 1938, but due to the mobilization of the British fleet during the Sudeten crisis, the ship was already on 28 September put into service as HMAS Hobart. End of 1938, the cruiser then arrived in Australia.

After the outbreak of the Second World War the cruiser was used for escort duties for British convoys in the Indian Ocean. After Italy entered the war’s bombed the Walrus – onboard aircraft Hobart on 19 June 1940, the Italian radio station on Centre Peak Iceland in the Red Sea. On 1 August escorted the ship reinforcements to Berbera in British Somaliland. Because of the numerical superiority of the attacking from Italian Somaliland and Ethiopia Italian armed forces, however, had already on 15 August, the evacuation of British Somaliland be placed. The Hobart served during the evacuation as an operational headquarters, the crew built a makeshift pier and its additional motor boats were used as ferries, brought the troops to the transporters. The port was often attacked by Italian aircraft, Hobart was there but not damaged. The board aircraft was again used as a bomber, this time against the Italian headquarters in Saylac. In addition, a 3-pdr guns of the cruiser was brought ashore to be used by the army as a tank gun. Three volunteers from the crew operated the gun and fell in a rearguard action in Italian prisoner of war, from which they were freed in April 1941 at the British conquest of Massawa. On 19 April 1940 left the cruiser as the last ship of the port of Berbera and destroyed with gunfire, the last intact harbor facilities.

By October 1940, the cruiser remained in use in the Red Sea, among others, he escorted the convoy WS 2nd Then he returned to an overhaul in Colombo to Australia, where he performed escort duties until mid-1941. In August 1941 he joined the British Mediterranean fleet, prompting his sister ship HMAS Perth at the 7th Cruiser Squadron from. In the following months she was in the eastern Mediterranean in use, it supported both Syria’s occupation by British and Free French troops and the fighting in North Africa. After the European japan attack on Pearl Harbor and the beginning of the Japanese invasion of Southeast Asia, the Hobart was like all Australian naval units moved to Southeast Asia, there to stop the zumarschierenden on Australia Japanese.


As of January 1942, the cruiser was used as part of the ABDA fleet in the area of Malaysia, Sumatra and Java, where the combined forces of the Australian, British, Dutch (german dutch) and Americans tried to stop the Japanese advance. The Hobart while several convoys escorted to Singapore. During this time the ship fell several times in the heaviest air raids, but it survived without major damage. On 25 February, the ABDACOM was dissolved by his commander, the British Field Marshal Sir Archibald Wavell, as it had to accept that were not enough forces for the defense of the area available. Nevertheless, the ABDA fleet decided under the Dutch Rear Admiral Karel Doorman at a last attempt to prevent the Japanese invasion of Java. All remaining available area larger ships were summarized in a combat unit and should attack, including the Hobart Perth and her sister ship, the Japanese invasion fleet. However, when the Hobart on 25 February Tandjong Priok took fuel from a tanker, the port was attacked by Japanese bombers. About 60 bombs went down near the cruiser. Although there was no direct hit, but there was considerable damage from shrapnel on both the Hobart and on the tanker, so the fuel transfer had to be canceled. As a result, the Hobart could not join the main battle group and missed the disastrous for the ABDA forces battle of the Java Sea.

Together with the late arrivals cruisers HMS Danae and HMS Dragon and the destroyers HMS Scout, HMS Tenedos and Hr.Ms. Evertsen has been attempted on the night of 28 February to make a foray into the Japanese invasion fleet in East Java. However, the ships collided on superior Japanese forces, only a misidentification of a Japanese reconnaissance that reported the three light cruiser than a battleship and two heavy cruisers, the Japanese stopped them to pursue the association. The ships fled through the Sunda Strait to the south without being bothered by Japanese ships. The Hr.Ms. Evertsen but returned back to Batavia after they had been separated by a storm from the other ships. A day later it was like the Perth and the American heavy cruiser USS Houston, sunk in the Battle of Sunda Strait.

The next use of Hobart was in the Battle of the Coral Sea. There they formed together with the heavy cruisers HMAS Australia and the destroyers USS Chicago and USS Perkins, USS Walke and USS Farragut, the Task Force 44 under the command of Rear Admiral John Crace. This association should intercept Japanese trucks and their accompanying ships on the way to Port Moresby. When the ships had reached a position 180 miles off the southern tip of New Guinea, they were attacked by 27 Japanese aircraft. Only minutes after the end of the Japanese attack mistakenly bombed American B-17 bombers, which were launched by Australian air bases, the dressing. In both attacks, but there were hardly any significant damage.

On 7 August 1942, the cruiser was part of the Allied forces that occupied Guadalcanal, which was the prelude to the month-long battle for the island. On the night of 8 9th August patrolled the Hobart along with the USS San Juan and two destroyers, the eastern entrance to the Iron Bottom Sound and thus escaping the destruction of the western coverage groups in the Battle of Savo Iceland. After an overhaul in Sydney in October it was in the following months as part of Task Force 74 in the Coral Sea in use. On 20 July 1943 the Hobart it was hit by the torpedo from a Japanese submarine on the rear and severely damaged. By the results there were strong water ingress, the force of the explosion was so strong that the deck was bent with the 60-ton gun turret Y upwards. In addition, the cruiser lost both starboard screws. Thirteen of the crew as well as an onboard American naval officer were killed. The cruiser but managed to Espiritu Santo, and from there escorted him the destroyer HMAS Arunta and HMAS Warramunga after makeshift repairs to Sydney. The repairs of the damage in the Cockatoo Dockyard Iceland lasted nearly two years until the beginning of March 1945. Then the cruiser took part in the landing at the Visayas.


On 24 April 1945 Hobart supported the landings at Tarakan in May and took on the landings at Wewak in New Guinea in part, followed by the landings in Brunei on Borneo in June, and the reconquest of Balikpapan in July. On 31 August 1945, the ship at the Japanese surrender in Tokyo Bay. After the war she was multiple times as part of the Allied occupation forces in Japan in use before it was decommissioned in 1947 and assigned to the reserve fleet. Between 1950 to 1953 extensive alterations were made ​​to make Hobart a training ship, but the ship was not put into service again, and finally scrapped in 1962 in Japan.

Leander-class (1929)

Kreuzer (Australia)

Ship in World War II

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