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HMS Leopard 2nd Commission

HMS Leopards Second commission
6th December 1960 to 22nd November 1962
Including Ships Company list

Leopard

Part 1

The following is an abstract from that commissions commissioning book, sadly dates of events and places visited was not included

“THIS IS YOUR LIFE” or “TWO YEARS BEFORE THE MAST” – AND BEHIND IT!

It began really with the WORK-UP. Time passed quickly during the work-up and much has been omitted in this account. This is generally agreed to be all to the good.

Capt Leo 2Arriving at Portland after the SHAKE-DOWN, we commenced the SHAKE-UP, followed by the CRACK-DOWN, and then the WORK-UP. Seven weeks, twenty nervous breakdowns and a general feeling of nausea later we were put to the test in our passing-out exercise, by name “HALLMARK”- we passed out. Taking our sad farewell from Portland, F.O.S.T, his staff and the whole festering issue at 1312 GMT we gently edged away to the east at 23 knots (max. on eight engines) on the 9th March.
Portland “crack-up”!

Then came leave. Ten days glorious G.S.L – or was it sick leave?
“….first it’s paint the b*****d for Christmas, then it’s paint the b*****d for Portland- I wouldn’t be a bit surprised if they recall me from retirement to paint the b*****d when she pays off.”

4th April 1961, after a fortnight in dry-dock, and a week in the stream furiously painting ourselves overall we sailed for the South Atlantic and South American Station with our first port of call Gibraltar.
Waltham2Of Gib. let us remember two things. Firstly, it is considered an illegal method to come inboard via the the headrope, and if you are “shot away” at the time you may find this method quite difficult. Secondly ” Media Media” and Malagar are very different types of booze to draught Bass-were glad to say.

Next came Bathurst (West Africa), glorious and cosmopolitan Bathurst. One of the attractions here was the organised crocodile hunt. Unfortunately the hunters didn’t find any crocodiles so anything which moved in, on or around the River Gambia went in peril of life and limb.

HMS Bermuda

HMS Bermuda

We left Bathurst and rendezvoused with HMS Bermuda and our sister ship LYNX ( who we were relieving on station) and made a grand entry into Freetown. Here we joined Canadian and American naval units to witness history in the making. During our stay we saw the end of Sierra Leone as a colony and the birth of an Independent State within the Commonwealth. Of course we all entered into the spirit of the thing and celebrated the affair with great enthusiasm.

On down the coast for a flying visit to Abidjan  to pick up the CinC of the SA&SA Station together with his wife for passage to Luanda  and the Cape respectively.

Then there was Tema. Tema with it’s surf beaches and nearby Accra, with it’s African versions of Western night life. Can anyone forget the organised “Grippo Run” to the N.C.O’s Club of the “All Black Sappers”? That particular vile “White Rum” with the ultra respectable label on the bottle? “High Life” and variations as performed by our white suited, inebriated would be Fred Astaires?

On the more serious side we took the local service big brass, sevicemen and some politicians to sea for the day. We wer to show them a mock submarine Mortarattack with live mortar (Squid) firings. Eventually we did manage to get two bombs away- much to the delight of the representative body from the “Scows, Dhows and Dugouts” division of the Ghana Navy. All was not quite as it should have been on that terrible day.(Squid pic from Brian Waltham)
Lagos was next on our visiting list. Here we met that nice man, the U.K High Commissioner; that was quite a nice cocktail party he threw for us. One small point though, when a steward offers you a cigarette from a silver cigarette box on a silver tray- you are not supposed to take the box as well! It was during this cocktail party that our  berthing wires were sheared by the gentleman giving his impression of Stirling Moss driving a cargo boat.

Next port of call was Luanda. This Portuguese Colony was having troubles. the visit went smoothly in spite of the tension and large numbers of armed patrols in the town. It was generally a quiet run due, not only to the political situation, but also to the high cost of living. The only casualties were in the *House of Commons where the “Battle Royal” had raged concerning our visit, however we had reached the Cape by the time the Honourable Members had reached a complete disagreement on whether or not we should visit Luanda.
Coinciding with our arrival at Simonstown, South Africa was due to become a Republic on 31st May, and there were threats of national strikes and large scale demonstration.

Lord Nel BarThe S.A.N and the Army were being brought up to strength very rapidly and deployed to counteract any acts of “civil disobedience”, but as all of this had no effect on the all-time best price of one shilling (5p) per very large tot of brandy and “DARYLS”, “CATS” and the “NAVIGATORS DEN” were open for business aslord Nel Bar- Dudley usual, we were not particularly disturbed. Independence came and went and still brandy was one shilling per tot.

After  an official visit to Capetown, during which the whole crew were invited to a special showing of the film “The Bulldog Breed” and a “Grand Dance” presided over by the Lady Mayor, we sailed for the island of St Helena.

St Helena & Dependencies
St Helena is a lone mid-Atlantic island, a mere 47 square miles in size, situated at Lat. 15º 55’ S and Long. 5º 45’ W., 1200 miles west of Angola, its nearest mainland.  The island’s capital and only town is Jamestown, with a population of 1,302, out of a total population of 5,644.  There is as yet no airport.
St Helena was discovered by the Portuguese in 1502 and has been a British colony since it was first settled by the East India Company in 1659.  It was home to the exiled Emperor Napoleon Bonaparte from 1815 until his death in 1821.  In 1834, the island became a Crown Colony and is still a British Overseas Territory.
Ascension Island, 700 miles to the north west of St Helena, and Tristan da Cunha, 1200 miles to the south west, were occupied in 1815 and 1816.  Ascension Island’s capital is Georgetown and the island has a total population of 1,122.  Tristan da Cunha has a population of 284.
Under the provisions of the 2002 British Overseas Territories Act, the people of St Helena and Dependencies have finally been granted the right to full British citizenship and once again enjoy a right of abode in the United Kingdom.
Many thanks to Dr Alexander Schulenburg of The St Helena Institute, permission to copy this article.                               www.st-helena.org

We were to bring back to Capetown a body of legal gentlemen who had been deciding the fate of some perhaps not-so-legal gentlemen, who though natives of Bahrein, had been taking a little holiday at the British taxpayers expense on that delightful ex-prison island of St Helena. ( those very Bahreinies have since received compensation for wrongful imprisonment to the tune of £45,000 from the British Government)

The islanders entertained us with enthusiasm laying on a dance which rose from doubtful beginnings to the heights of dizzy success-mainly due to the amounts of alcohol consumed.

During the stay our S.O, Lt Godfrey, was seriously injured in a car smash and we had to return to the Cape leaving him and our Medical Officer on St Helena.

The boredom of the sea passage back to the Cape was relieved by the quizzes in which our “legal” passengers gave us great entertainment. it is said that their stay onboard influenced matters at the Captains Table?

When we arrived back in Simonstown work began on stripping down the engines and general maintenance. Just about when the “Black Watch” had all the bits and pieces strewn all over the jetty and everyone was preparing to go on weekend we were told we would be making a mercy dash back to St Helena with a South African Neuro-Surgeon and a nurse in order to help the S.O.

Andy,Butch Clapson & Alan Ladd

The engineering department began heaving all the bits a pieces inboard again and fitting them into place. They were, to their everlasting credit, still putting odd pieces in when we steamed at all despatch to St Helena.
The much maligned Communications department helped a little here by putting the Neuro-Surgeon in voice contact with the doctor ashore in St Helena whilst we were still over 1,200 miles away so that they could discuss the S.O’s condition and take suitable action.

All ended well. We returned to Simonstown and the S.O and his wife, who had been given a compassionate passage to St Helena by the fastest possible means in the interim period, were put ashore amid camera flashes of the National and local South African newspapers.

Now came a period of frenzied activity in order to get the ship ready for the East Coast cruise. During this cruise we were to fly the flag of the CinC SA&SA once more ( obviously another jolly for this under-worked, over-staffed Admiral. On Leopards first commission at the Cape he had a nice jolly around the Seychelles).

 

Part 2
East Coast & Tristan da Cunha

Our first port of call on this part of the cruise was to be Port Elizabeth . Here many of our number visited the ADDO game reserve to shoot “big game”- with camera’s of course. There was a complaint that the animals were so used to being photographed that they struck poses making the whole thing look so unnatural.

Next it’s East London and it was here that saw our motor racing enthusiasts at the local races.. This, together with the dances organised by the South African equivalant of the UK’s RNVR, ensured that a good time was had by all.

On to Durban  to be greeted traditionally by the “Lady in White” singing to us from the jetty. Here we would like to pass on a little information to a couple of “ANON” ratings. The reason they had a large stretch of beach to themselves, whilst hundreds of people were crowded on a much smaller stretch, was that the people were using the section of beach protected by shark nets and life-savers, whilst the ratings were swimming in the “Sharks Only” part !  We were admirably entertained by the Missions to Seaman, they gave us numerous dances and extended much private hospitality.

Mombasa will be remembered largely because of the woodcarvings which were on sale in practically every shop, bar, cafe and market stall in the town. The place will also be burned deep into the memory of a member of the side party who was lowered gently into the water whilst working on a stage and the shocked into what was probably a world record shattering swim to the Med-Ladder by cries of “Shark” from the upperdeck.

Our French-speaking ratings had a chance to practice their art at our next port of call. Diego Suarez, the French Naval Base in Madagascar offered us fishing trips, swimming and sports fixtures against the French Navy. Ashore in the evenings we had some riotous times with the French foreign Legion, Army and Naval rating stationed locally.

Mauritius gave us the opportunity to meet a large contingent of our fellow countrymen who were standing by the building of a wireless station on the island. Here the RN Families Club  gave us open house and many were the busloads of feted matelots who returned to the ship in the early hours of the morning. There was swimming to be had at the palm fringed beaches and wonderful scenery for those who went on organised bus trips.

At all the ports we visited we returned the hospitality extended to us by throwing open the ship to visitors. Mauritius undoubtedly took greatest advantage of our offer to come aboard and look around.

From Mauritius we returned to the Cape and Simonstown and preperations for exercise CAPEX. We also returned to what had by this time become “Home Ground”, I refer of course to the “CATS”, “DARYLS” and the “NAVI’S DEN”.

For three weeks we were busy exercising with units of  the South African Navy including ships Transvaal, Good Hope Vrystaat. We had also been joined  by our relief  on station HMS Jaguar and the submarine Amphion, luckless target of many CAPEX anti-submarine exercises. A team of “Model Flyers” from Portland provided us with targets for our A/A shoots and one or two humorous moments.

It was during this period that someone told those SA newspaper reporters that, amongst many other wonderous things, that we could have sunk the Bismark single-handed. This news may have impressed the South Africans but not half  so much as it must impressed the Admiralty who obviously had no idea of our tremendous potential. As the Russian Fleet didn’t immediately surrender we can only assume they do not read South African newspapers.

Then, as we were leaving Simonstown for yet another phase of CAPEX we received an Operational Immediate signal to return to harbour. There was Volcano2volcanic activity on the small remote island of Tristan da Cunha. It meant working into the early hours of the morning loading all the usual gear peculiar to emergency relief operations and getting the ship ready for the voyage.

We sailed for Tristan da Cunha at 4am on the 10th October.
During our passage the situation changed radically. The Islanders had been taken off Tristan by two small fishing vessels. They had the been transferedVolcano to the Dutch Liner, Tjsadane, diverted from South America. We met her in the growing dusk when she was 24 hours from Tristan. There was a brief flashing of signal lamps and she disappeared in the murky dusk, carrying her bewildered refugees to Capetown.

Leopards mission was now changed. She was now to salvage valuable equipment on the island and destroy documents and equipment which could not be moved.
During the whole of the voyage to Tristan the landing operation was being planned and the various parties detailed for specific tasks.

When we arrived at the island, plans swung smoothly into operation for embarking personal belongings and valuable stores. Houses were Paper Clip Tristansystematiacally and carefully stripped, and salvaged articles transferred to the ship. Then came heavier gear such as generators and Met. equipment, which became our deck cargo.

There were two unpleasant tasks to perform. One was the destruction of all alcohol on the island to prevent it being a source of trouble to the master of the TRISTANIA whose crew would be using the island as a base for as long as possible. The other was the destruction of the dogs and fowl on the island. The cattle and sheep could be left to fend for themseves, but the dogs would either starve slowly or turn wild, savage the other livestock  and be a danger to any subsequent attempts to land on the island. Similarly  the fowl would have had a long and painful death.

Tristan & Cunah 2Two dogs escaped. TRISTAN and CUNHA. These dogs are firm favourites on board, except perhaps with the Buffer, who claims they are too fond of walking on freshly painted decks and performing their natural functions in the wrong places, and with the owners of numerous miscellaneous articles, i.e. shoes, caps, photographs, etc., with which Cunha is very fond of supplementing his diet.Scanned Picture 11

The volcano itself was an amazing sight. Even while we were there it was growing steadily. it was a single mound of hot ash and rock about 300 to 400 feet high. At irregular but frequent intervals great clouds of of sulphurous gases and smoke burst into the air. At night it was most spectacular. Red hot ash and boulders rolled and bounced down it’s sides leaving glowing scars which were visible twenty miles away.
Tists VolcanoThe thirty six hours we spent off the island was in the middle of five days of fine weather; most unusual for that time of year. Had it not been fine and calm we would not have been able to land at all as there are no quays or jetties.

Hicks beachThe beach that was used for the landings was christened “Hicks Beach” after the Captain, but as the ship was weighing anchor to leave the island the volcano gave a large belch and Hicks Beach along with the Crayfish Canning Factory was swallowed up with lava, to cheers of all on the fo’cstle. ( this event was related by Brian Waltham).

During the passage back to Capetown the ship was more like a Mississippi gambling river-boat than a warship. There was a mammoth raffle, tombola, entrance fees to cinema shows of films salvaged from the island and the “Grand Auction” of things ranging from transistor radios to long week-ends.

When we arrived at Capetown we were able to present Mr WILLIE REPETTO, the Chief Islander, with the sum of £235, together with a Leopard  crest and a tattered Union Jack which had flown on the island to the end.

The islanders were resettled at Calshott near Southampton, England.  HMS Leopard was made custodian of the Ensign that HMS Magpie gave to them, until such time, if ever, that the islanders return to Tristan da Cunha.
Many thanks to Brian Waltham for submission of pics of Tristan da Cunha
The following information was retrieved from Kew Public Records Office, Stamp T de Cunhaconcerning the payment to Shipwright Blount for photographs/films taken privately by him 13 October 1961 at Tristan da Cunha.
Register No.CNI.254/61                                                                               Minute Sheet No. 1
1.     It will recalled that HMS Leopard was, sent to Tristan da Cunha at the time of the volcanic eruptions on the island. While the ship was engaged in clearing-up operations, a member of the crew, J.J. Blount took a 100 35mm photographs of the scene. These were forwarded to CNI by the Commanding Officer, HMS Leopard for publicity purposes.
2.   CNI distributed the pictures to the Press media who were keen to obtain the shots which were not available from any other source.Enclosed are cuttings of the pictures published in the times The Daily telegraph and the Daily Express. A selection of pictures were also published in the London Illustrated News and the Sphere. Both the National geographic Society eagerly sought copies of the prints.
3.  These type of pictures make excellent publicity for the royal navy and CNI is anxious that this type of individual enterprise should be encouraged were ever possible, particularly in those units where Naval Photographers are not available. He therefore proposes that Shipwright Blount should be given some tangible recognition for his efforts in form of an ex gratia payment. CNI suggests, that, in this case, a payment of £10 would be suitable reward.
4.   If the proposal is approved, it would appear for the payment to be met from the £400 List for Special services under Vote 1. Head of GF 1 Branch is requested to submit for approval accordingly.
A. Wallis
Chief of Naval Information
By Nobby G:

My, my, weren’t they generous, I estimate that at todays rate that would equate to about £300, I bet the Times would have paid that for one photograph.
Did the Navy just give these pics away or did they sell them on?

Thanks also to John Blount for the colour pics and articles on Tristan

Part3
We head for home
Farewell to Cape of Good Hope
Hello Cape Horn

At last it was time to leave South Africa to join the Special Squadron which was being formed to show the flag in South America.

Something special was needed to give in return for the unlimited hospitality which had been extended to us during our time in South Africa. Something special was provided. Firstly there was a really excellent farewell dance at the “Rhodesia by the sea” hotel. during the evening we were entertained with a polished performance from our own guitar group the “Clippers” (of Gib. radio fame) We also had performances from quite a few other people as well!
Guests were invited aboard for the trip from Simonstown to Capetown. They were served an excellent luncheon, although there was some shortage because 420 guests arrived onboard instead of the anticipated 240. A pipe band played on “X” gundeck; so did A/b’s Mackay and Wright, and our Christmas pudding was ceremoniously stirred.

We sailed from Capetown on the 4th December leaving behind many good friends and a great deal of general goodwill.
LIONWe rendezvoused with HM Ships “Lion”(on left) and “Dunkirk”(on right)HMS DUNKIRK together with the Royal Fleet Auxiliary tanker “Wave Prince”

On 10th December and in company we entered Rio de Janeiro.
Ceremonial guards were landed from each ship to represent us at the first of many wreath-laying ceremonies of which the South Americans are fond. Here also a great many “rabbits” were brought aboard; mainly trays decorated with butterfly or moth wings and jewellery–semi-precious stones being reasonably cheap in Brazil.

Excellent sight seeing trips were organised which included meals, swimming and a visit to our first South American football match in Rio’s magnificent football stadium which is the largest in the world.
Practically everyone visited the world famous Copacobana beach-if not the actual beach the seafront bars were well and truly used. Whilst at Rio we received our first Christmas mail.

On leaving Rio we exercised with units of the Brazilian Navy before proceeding to Buenos Aires where we were to spend Christmas.. Messdecks were decorated and the victualling department done us proud.

Try as we may it is difficult to get hold of anyone who can give a clear account of Christmas-still this only goes to prove it must have been a pretty good one ! Though everyone remembers our band at the carol service. The four members of Lions Royal Marine band who lived in 2 mess every time we were in port were particularly welcome that day.

hmslondonderryFrom Buenos Aires we steamed down the River Plate to Montevideo; having been joined by HMS Londonderry (pic)

On the way down the Plate we were attacked by a large swarm of insects that looked like dragonflies. They infested every ventilated compartment before blocking the ventilators completely and the upperdeck was littered with them.
Some consternation was caused by certain of our “saltier” members who elected to sail the whaler from B.A., however as they arrived in time for the New Year no harm was done.

Scanned Picture 1At New Year all the Scotsmen aboard developed even broader accents than usual as they banded together to celebrate some ancient rite known as “OCH, HOGMANAY, OCH” ! They seemed to enjoy themselves, as did the rest of us Sassenachs, and the majotity of the crew saw the New Year in by dancing in the streets and throwing fireworks after the local custom.

In our next port of call, Puerto Belgrano, there followed an ASADO which is the South American version of the South African BRAAIVLEIS which is the South African version of the American BARBECUE which in turn is merely a souped up version of roasting potatoes on a bonfire on Bonfire Night (November 5th- Guy Fawkes and all that). In other words a excuse for a good piss-up with well burnt grub !

The run-ashore here was a little disappointing after Rio ,B.A and Monte although there were excellent swimming facilities for the more energetic.

On our passage through the Magellan Straits we paused at Punta Arenas to pick up S.O.O and a Chilean Naval Officer who was to act as our  Liaison Officer on our passage through the Straits and subsequent visit to Talcahuano.

We proceeded independently to Talcahuano, Lion and the rest of the Leo2 guardsquandron going to Valparaiso to make headline news by painting out the local hospital. From Talcahuano there is little to report. We put the usual guard shore to attend to the usual wreath-laying ceremony and departed quietly for Callao.

 

Having rejoined the squadron we entered Callao. For once our guide-book was up to date with information, at least about the terrible smell from the local fish meal factory which clouds the harbour and town continuously.. however this smell did not reach the saloon bars in nearby Lima so it did not seriously inconvenience anyone.

Bogata Guard

Bogata Guard

In Lima there were visits to the site of the ancient Inca village, trips on the highest railway in the world, mountains of “furry” rabbits brought aboardScanned Picture 9 and some of the best “Grippo” runs of the South American Cruise. However all good things must come to an end and we were soon on our way through the Panama Canal.

Panama CanalAfter passage through the Panama Canal the Special squadron visited, the place that Drake knocked about a bit ! The natives still have their forts and bastions but they seemed more than willing to let bygones be bygones about the dastardly deeds of old Frankie. Here large numbers of stuffed alligators were bought-probably by the unsuccessful Gambia white hunters-and graced (or should that be DISgraced ?) the messdecks until our return home.

When we left Cartegena we were once again wearing the flag of the C in C. The Special Squadron was disbanded and we proceeded independently to Port o’ Spain, Trinidad. There were three things of interest here; Steel Bands, The “Limbo” Dance and Rum. (a change I suppose from Rum,Bum and Baccy). Probably most people will say these things should have been posted in reverse order but the “AA” representative on board specially asked that they should be as above !

Whilst on passage between Port o’ Spain and Dakar, West Africa, our next call, we had our sea inspection. This amongst  many other things gave the yeoman and the Shipwright a chance to fly their kite – literally. Our South African midshipman was in his element supervising the activities of some Red indians in an encampment on top of the bridge and all the buffer’s prayers about the paintwork being dry were unanswered.

Dakar was expensive. The main attraction was the swimming and even then it set you back 4,000 francs to get you on the beach. We only wanted to use it not buy it?

We arrived in Gibraltar on the 26th February, one of the first of many ships who were assembling there for the big exercise “Dawnbreeze Seven”. There were frequent trips over the border to La Linea where some of our number were so well known that they were on first name terms with the border guards. Mountains of rabbits were brought aboard  to add to everyones already enormous collection. In between all these private activities we managed to fit in a couple of very strenuous weeks at Dawnbreeze Seven.

On the 30th March we anchored at Spithead, Portsmouth. Families and friends were bought out to us by the tug “Grinder” We then proceeded up harbour and secured alongside at noon.
We knew we had finally arrived home in England…… It was P*****g down with rain.

……Ships Company.. Second commission.

ATKINS A,PO
ANDREW M,Ord
ALFORD R,AB
ANDREW R,Ck(S)
AKRIGG J,LM(E)
BACKUS J,Lt
BRADBY D,Lt
BROWN R,COA
BEATON E,OAI
BIGNELL D,RS
BELL J,PO
BLOUNT J,Shpt2
BURKE G,RO2
BEAVIS G,AB
BONNEY R,Ord
BRICKNELL D,AB
BLANDFORD B,AB
BUXTON B,AB
BRADSHAW J,AB
BRENTNALL C,RO3
BOYD J,AB
BARTON C,AB
BATCHELOR P,EM1
BOTTERILL T,LStd
BYRNE B,REM1
BALDOCK M,M(E)I
BEER B,M(E)1
BAZLEY C,LM(E)
CHAMBERLAIN R,ERA1
CASTLE A,POCk(S)
CHASTON D,RO3
CRABBE J,AB
CURTIS G,AB
COOK, M,AB
CLARK P,AB
CHARMAN R,AB
CHEEVERS V,AB
CLAPSON P,AB
CURTIS D,LCk(S)
CUTTER H,REM1
COTCHIN A,LREM
CROOK  M,M(E)1
DINGLEY W,ChM(E)
DENEY F,ERA1
DAVENPORT P,ERA1
DONOVAN G,ElMech1
DETERNANT L,PO
DUDLEY I,LSea
DEVLIN G,EM1
DESBOROUGH S,LStd
DAWSON C,REM2
EDWARDS A,CP0(Cox’n)
EDWARDS E,SPO(S)
ETTRIDGE D,AB
EVANS J,AB
FIELD E,CPO
FLEMING P,PO
FRAMPTON S,POM(E)
FRENCH D,POM(E)
FLYNN B,AB
FRASER G,AB
FIELDING A,AB
FOLLEY T,AB
FROST C,LM(E)
FULLER S,M(E)l
FINLAYSON E,LM(E)
GODFREY R,Lt
GALLOP D,EAI
GRUNOMAN A,ERA1
GOLDING J,ERA1
GILBERT E,CY
GOLDING J,ERA1
GRAHAM D,POCk(O)
GARRARD L,POEL
GUY E,AB
GRAFTON K,LRO
GRINYER R,AB
GUY R,AB
OREENWELL M,Ord
GANDER D,AB
GRACE M,AB
GEGGUS K,TO2
GREENER R,M(E)I
HOOPER C,Sub-Lt
HICKS-BEACH P,CDR
HERAGE R,Shpt1
HANCOCK P,ChEL
HOLDEN R,PO
HARTLEY C,AB
HOWARD E,Ord
HUDSON W,AB
HAINES J,LSea
HART V,AB
HAINES R,LSea
HOWELL K,AB
HUNT D,AB
HENDERSON J,LStd
HAZELDON R,Std
HAYLER H,LSA{V)
HEDGECOCK D,LCk(O)
HALE R,LCk(S)
HARTSHORNE D,EM1
MUMPHREYS G,M(E)1
HALL A,LM(E)
HAYWARD J,LME
HUTCHINSON D,JEM
JOHN SW,Lt-Cdr
JOHNSON P,Surg Lt
JOHNSON J,PORE1
JOHNSON R,POEI
JENKINS R,TO3
JOSS A,EM1
KENDALL R,Eng Lt-Cdr
KEIGHTLEY C,Shpt1
KISSACK B,AB
KENEDY T,EM1
KENNY, D,LSA(V)
KILLICK B,LSBA
KELLY D,LCk(S)
LOOKER G,Eng Sub-Lt
LEE JM,Lt-Cdr
LUCKINS P,POM(E)
LIGHTFOOT R,POM(E)
LEWIS C,LSea
LLEWELLYN L,RO2
LADDS E,AB
LEONARD R,LM(E)
LESLIE V,LWtr
LEIGH J,Ck(O)
LOVETT B,M(E)I
LOWE J,M(E)l
LIVINGSTONE H,M(E)
LINDEN I,Midshipman
MILLER S,Sub-Lt(G)
MUGRIDGE D,Lt(G)
MARTIN M,Lt-Cdr
McNICOL P,ChE1
McKENZIE,POck(O)
MALES T,LSea
MARSH W,AB
McCUTCHEON A,LSea
MACDONALD H,Ord
McCORMACK J,AB
MUGGLETON D,Ord
MATTHEWS L,AB
MILLS B,AB
MACKEY T,AB
MELLON M,RO2
MAGUINNESS K,RO2
MYNHEER R,LM(E)
MORRISON J,LEM
MITCHELL D,M(E)1
MINTER G,M(E)1
MUNRO J,M(E)I
MEDD L,M(E)I
MACFARLANE I,LEM
NESBITT P,POM(E)
NORTH A,AB
NORTHROP C,Wtr
NORRIE D,M(E)1
NOBBS R,M(E)I
NASH A,M(E)1
O’HARA J,POCk(O)
PEDDlE N,Midshipman
PHILLIPS F,Lt-Cdr
PEARSON M,POEL
PEPPARD A,AB
PATTERSON J,AB
PENRITH G,AB
PRINGLE T,AB
PAUL N,LTO
PRESTON R,LM(E)
PRINCE C,EM1
PHILLIPS J,M(E)1
PARSONS D,M(E)1
QUIGLEY R,ERAl
ROMNEY J,Sub-Lt(E)
RICHARDSON A,Sub-Lt
RUSSELl T,CPO
REED J,Mech1
REYNOLDS D,CHM(E)
RUSH E,CHM(E)
RANSOME R,POM(E)
RICHARDS A,LM(E)
ROCHE M,AB
RAWLINS D,RO2
REID, G,TO2
ROBERTS R,SA(S)
ROBINSON D,LEM
RIXOM D,M(E)1
RILEY J,LSA(V)
SAUNDERS B,CERA
SCOTT R,OA1
SCHLLLEMORE K,PO
SAYSELL L,E1Mech2
SWANN DW,LSea
SPARKES B,AB
SMITH D,AB
SMOLLETT J,AB
SCOTT A,AB
SWANN D,AB
SIVITER A,AB
SMITH R,LSea
STOCKLEY K,AB.
SHEPPARD M,EMI
SEWELL S,Std
SINCLAIR R,LREM
SMITH D,REM1
SILK B,M(E)1
THISTLEWOOD P,Mechl
TUCKER K,ERA1
TILLEY V,REA2
TINSLEY T,POM(E)
THOMPSON R,TO2
TAYLOR R,AB
THORNTON A,LSea
THACKER M,Ord
TUCKER D,AB
THOMAS D,ME1
TRYNER N,LREM
THACKER G,LEM
THOMPSON A,M(E)1
THOMSON I,LM(E)
VINER J,PO
VENTOR D,Ord
WRIGHT M,Lt-Cdr
WELLS G,Sub-Lt
WARREN R,Sub-Lt
WEBB G,Midshipman
WILSON A,ERAI
WARD F,OAl
WEBSTER K,CPOStd
WRIGHT G,Ord
WOODS A,AB
WALTHAM B,AB
WINNEY J,AB
WILLIAMS A,AB
WILLIAMS C,LSea
WRIGHT R,AB
WRIGHT S,LM(E)
WHITFORD L,M(E)l
WHARTON F,M(E)1
YOUNG S. LEM
YORKSTON A,EM2

*HMS Leopard’s proposed visit to Angola created a heated debate in Parliament:

H.M.S. “Leopard” (Visit to Angola)
Mr. Stonehouse
asked the Civil Lord of the Admiralty what is the purpose of the good will visit of H.M.S. “Leopard” to Angola.
Mr. C. Ian Orr-Ewing
As I explained on 15th May, the ship was making its 4,000 mile return journey from Sierra Leone to Simonstown and paid a routine visit to this and other ports.
Mr. Stonehouse
Is the Civil Lord aware that the incredible stupidity of arranging a so-called good will visit of this kind to Angola has resulted in a great sense of shock among the newly independent countries, but not alone among them? There has been a sense of surprise also in Brazil and, indeed, among the Portuguese themselves. Will the hon. Gentleman take this opportunity of making clear that there is no question of this visit in any way endorsing the repressive colonialist régime?
Mr. Orr-Ewing
I made my views clear in answer to the Private Notice Question on this issue on Monday. I cannot endorse the supplementary question asked by the hon. Gentleman. This is one of 800 routine visits which Her Majesty’s ships have made in the last four months to different ports in the world. It would have proceeded quite 1352 satisfactorily if it had not been made a political issue by hon. Members opposite.
Sir J. Maitland
Is it not also a traditional duty of the Royal Navy to visit places where there are outbreaks of rebellion or troubles? [Laughter.] I cannot understand why hon. Members are laughing. Is it not traditional that the Navy should visit such places in order to see that British nationals are looked after properly and also to bring information back to this country, of which we have very little?
Mr. Orr-Ewing
I endorse what my hon. Friend has said.
 Mr. Paget
The Civil Lord used the word “paid”. Does that mean that the visit is now over? If it is over, is he aware that that will be very welcome news indeed? Is it convenient for any of Her Majesty’s ships to choose this particular moment for a visit to Seoul?
Mr. Orr-Ewing
I used the word “paid”, perhaps inadvertently. The ship arrived there at 08.00 hours on Monday and is due to leave tomorrow, so the visit is still continuing. I have another Question on this.
Mr. Biggs-Davison
Have not all of us great good will towards the people of Angola and deep sympathy with all those, black or white, who have suffered so atrociously since the abominable invasion of Angola from across the Congo border.
Mr. Shinwell
The hon. Gentleman said in reply to Questions the other day on this matter that this had been cleared with the Foreign Office. If this ship was proceeding from Simonstown to some other port, how was the matter cleared with the Foreign Office?
Mr. Orr-Ewing
It was cleared at the Foreign Office because we perfectly well understood the anxiety concerning Angola. There is another Question to be answered later on this matter and I would prefer to wait until it is reached before making any further comment.
Mr. Stonehouse
asked the Civil Lord of the Admiralty what is the complement of H.M.S. “Leopard”; how many ratings and officers will be allowed shore leave in Luanda during the good will visit; and what steps he is taking 1353 to protect them from disturbances, in view of the dangerous situation in Angola.
Mr. C. Ian Orr-Ewing
The complement of H.M.S. “Leopard” is 13 officers and 184 ratings. Shore leave is being allowed. Admiral Copeman, who is in the ship, sent me a signal this morning reporting that Luanda was absolutely quiet and that everything in the city was normal.
Mr. Stonehouse
Can the Civil Lord say what reports were available on conditions in Luanda when arrangements for this good will trip were made? From the reports which have appeared in The Times and elsewhere, it would seem that the position in Luanda was far from secure a short time ago.
Mr. Orr-Ewing
We have a consul in Luanda and the Foreign Office were consulted and, presumably, they got their information from our consul in Luanda. Therefore, the situation was quiet then and it was quiet as of this morning, when I received the signal. Perhaps the Press reports to which the hon. Gentleman referred were somewhat exaggerated.
Mr. Dugdale
asked the Civil Lord of the Admiralty whether he authorised the good will visit to Luanda now being paid by H.M.S. “Leopard”.
Mr. C. Ian Orr-Ewing
The visit was authorised, after consultation with the Foreign Office, in the normal way.
Mr. Dugdale
In view of the Admiralty’s ineptitude in having this visit—[HON. MEMBERS: “No”]—will the Civil Lord now assure the House that after H.M.S. “Leopard” has spent a few days in Simonstown it is not proposed to visit Mozambique, where Africans are also being murdered and imprisoned in large numbers?
 Mr. Orr-Ewing
This Question asks who authorised this visit. My noble Friend authorised the visit and takes full responsibility for it.
Viscount Hinchingbrooke
When H.M.S. “Leopard” returns to port in this country, will my right hon. Friend provide transport to enable the officers and ratings of that vessel to come to the House of Commons in order to leave green cards for hon. Gentlemen opposite?
1354
Mr. Shinwell
I am sure that the Civil Lord would not deliberately mislead the House. Can he state, specifically and categorically, on which date the Foreign Office cleared the proposal, by the Admiralty presumably, that this vessel should visit Angola?
Mr. Orr-Ewing
We have been in consultation with the Foreign Office over a period of weeks, the last occasion being on Wednesday of last week.

Many thanks to all who have submitted pics and articles. I seem to have mislaid some along the way, so if you have submitted something and it’s not here please let me know.
John Blount kindly sent me Leo 2 commissioning book plus many pics and has made the re-writing of this commission possible (he lives in New Zealand) many thanks to you John.

I hope to include the seperate departmental dits in the near future, so if you have anything tucked away in that ‘ol sea chest please submit it for publication before the grandchildren get their grubby hands on your late effects, and as is the norm ditch it!

Any dit any pic from any commission or ship are all welcome.
Happy days,
Rob (Nobby) G

18 Responses to HMS Leopard 2nd Commission

  1. Jim Lomartire (Ex - USN)

    February 16, 2010 at 18:24

    I had a tour of the Leopard when it visited the US during the mid sixties.. VERY impressive for the times.. As a gunners mate on a Sumner Class DD I was particularly impressed with the 4.5″ guns and the way they were served.. My ship had 5″/38s and they were just not as efficient as the 4.5’s..

  2. Dee Drake

    November 3, 2010 at 15:44

    I sent a message about a month ago requesting any info on Frank Ward OAI
    having known him in 1959-1960 and having met the physician’s family who were on Tristan De Cuna when it erupted. I have not received a reply, maybe because he cannot be located but I would really appreciate it if somebody could get it touch with me and let me know the results of the search.

    Thanks in advance

    Dee Drake

  3. ian stuart

    March 7, 2011 at 13:01

    My father was the gunnery officer on hms Leopard in 1962, Lieutenant W S Stuart. I have a photo of him in bathurst, gambia 62. Can anyone remember him or provide info on the ships travels after March 62 please. Leopard was my dad’s last ship. He left Maryport, Cumberland in 1938 and joined the RN as a boy seaman at hms Wildfire, Sheerness, Kent. He often spoke about his last 3 ships with fondness: hms Pelican 1956/57, hms Loch Killisport 1959 and hms Leopard 62/63.

  4. Robert J Killick

    August 21, 2011 at 02:08

    My uncle, Brian Killick, who currently lives in the Phillipines, served as part of the ship’s crew from 1960 to 1962 and is very interested to hear from any of his old ship mates, especially as the 50 Year Anniversary of the evacuation of Tristan da Crunha is approaching. As the Navy saying goes “You always remember your first ship”, and he does with fond memories. Please do not hesitate to contact me/him through Facebook – either via his wife Alma Killick or nephew Robert J Killick.

  5. HALL A LM(E)

    October 22, 2011 at 16:05

    as you can see i served on hms leopard 1960-62.i would like to here from any member of crew that remembers me.cheers

  6. Steve Clow

    November 15, 2011 at 11:57

    I am trying to contact C.Northrop a WTR is that waiter!!! I am following a story we printed in 1961 sent by him and used in my newspaper, my mobile is 07736 641290

  7. robbyg

    November 16, 2011 at 11:46

    That would up set him…a waiter…actually WTR is a writer.
    A writer had many responsibilities that go with handling legal, pay, welfare, travel and career issues for his crewmates.

  8. Dave Chaston (RO3 at the time)

    February 19, 2012 at 16:58

    Joined Leopard direct from training as JRO (very green and raw) eventually rising to RO3. Remember the ships dances in Simon’s Town where I met the lady who was to become my wife (7 years later) and am now happily retired from RN and 30 years in SAN and living just outside Simon’s Town.

  9. William Hudson

    March 30, 2012 at 18:24

    I was on Robert Killick’s commission in the same “Jungle” mess deck. I was the STAAG Aimer and remember the commission with a mixture of affection and and great camaraderie.
    I believe Rob (Nobby) G was also at Fraser Gunnery Range when I was the Postie after the Leopard. I have written to him before but I do not remember him from either the Leopard or the gun range and I never received a reply from him either. I do not believe he exists or ever did. He says he used to maintain the grass at Fraser, well I used to maintain the lawn mower as well as being the Postie and don’ t recollect him at all,

  10. Robby G

    March 31, 2012 at 17:58

    Hi Bill,

    In reply to your message , I can assure you I was at Fraser Gunnery Range when stated. 16-Sep-64 to 18-Dec-65.
    I have a photo of a couple of the lads who were at the “range” at that time, they attended my wedding on Whale Island the Church of St Barbara (March 1965). Believe it or not one of them was I believe the “postie” at the time, and came from Croydon! Another was a young lad who shortly after was killed on his motor bike. Sadly I do not recall their names.
    I do recall the First Lieutenants name, Lt Flint, I recall him because we had just served together for 18 month on the Hartland Point in “Singers” 27-Feb-63 to 08-Aug-64 ,and he was a Gunnery Officer at St Vincent when I joined up there in 1957, a real nice fella.

    Not only did I assist the gardener but I was “snooker room” cleaner. The snooker room was attached to the NAAFI, run by a nice middle-aged girl/woman.
    Also when I was duty, at night, I had to go around Fraser to the various stoke houses and stoke up, top up the coal/coke burning furnaces…..does this ring a bell?

    Besides helping the gardener, I also, with him, done the daily lunch time trip to the Bookies to place bets for various people, dropping in at “Charlie Hurdles” (The Cumberland Arms) for a pint!

    As for not recalling me from the “Leopard”, perhaps it was because I was on the 1st Commission, paying her off in December 1960 and you was on the Second!
    When you joined she was “secondhand” but brand new when I joined her.

    If we were at Fraser at the same time we must have known each other.
    If I recall correctly my billet was in the first Nissen hut on the left in East Camp, the NAAFI was just about opposite

    I look forward to your comments.

    Robby G

  11. William Hudson

    April 6, 2012 at 10:18

    Hi Rob
    I wasn’t doubting the fact that you are a real live person, but my message had the desired effect. I have emailed you a couple of times before and never received a peep from you.
    I can not recall the name of the “Jimmy” at Fraser when I was there but he left about the time I did when I left to join the Euryalus.
    Now that you have detailed the dates you have clarified the situation as I was there before you. And yes I spent many a happy hour in the NAAFI/Snooker room.
    I didn’t have any doings with the gardener as he looked after the top end of the camp by the QMs shack and never came anywhere near the bottom end.
    I must say it was a most happy time of service as the Postie got all sorts of perks.
    Very nice to hear from you.
    Bill

  12. Deborah

    May 5, 2012 at 04:30

    I am researching Ancestry Tree and looking for a Peter Scott born Dorset 1944 and may have served on Leopard ship in the 1960’s.
    Any info or pics welcome.

  13. Colin Northrop (Writer)

    March 18, 2013 at 01:22

    Lt Cdr Phillips was also an accomplished cartoonist and, at the end of the commission, produced a book of cartoons about our adventures. I had one in my possession until a few years ago and valued it greatly. Unfortunately, it got misplaced when I moved to Australia to live in 1991. I would dearly love to get hold of another copy, I’m willing to pay!!! If anyone has a copy but doesn’t want to part with it, then a scanned/photocopied version would be great. I would also like to hear from Ian McFarlane, Dave Robinson, Bill Marsh and Vernon Leslie(L.Wtr) who all contributed to some of my greatest memories of that trip.

  14. David Mahony (Venter)

    July 20, 2014 at 14:29

    Hi, anyone around still from HMS Leopard’s 2nd Commission? I served on Leopard as a Radar Operator for this commission known as David Venter (spelled wrong on the crew list). I was a South African and was able to take my Triumph Tiger Cub motor cycle from Portsmouth to Simonstown hidden on the Stag deck. I was also part of the crew that sailed the whaler from Buenos Aires to Montevideo.

    I remember working under Lt Phillips who was my DO. Nigel Peddie was the South African midshipman who I knew well. We went to school together.

    I now live in Oakville near Toronto and would love to hear from anyone who may still be around.

    David Mahony (previously “Venter”)
    david@mahony.ca

  15. Brian Waltham

    March 25, 2016 at 23:23

    I served on the 2nd commission,in the Gunnery mess,now living in New Zealand and still in contact with my old shipmate Jimmy Evans who now lives in Southport Merseyside.
    I enjoyed my time on the Leopard it was a great commission we visited some fantastic places and had a good close knit ships company

  16. WENDY DRAPER

    August 3, 2016 at 10:28

    Does anyone have a copy of the news footage that was shown when the Leopard returned home to Portsmouth? Or know where I can access it. My mother and my brother were in the clip

    Wendy Draper
    (Daugher of J Reed Mech1)

  17. Brian Waltham

    August 17, 2016 at 08:21

    Have you tried contacting the news media in Portsmouth

  18. Antony williams

    June 27, 2017 at 13:43

    FOA William Hudson, this is your friend Bungy Williams, from the 61 tour. Remember we missed the ship, for its Mercy dash. Remember HMS Afrikaaner!!
    Still very much Alive!!

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