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Leith Shipyards

A history of the Ships built at the Henry Robb Shipyard in Leith, Scotland. Also a testimony to the men who built the Ships and to all who sailed in them.
 
     
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Home Ships Built in Leith 1939 to 1945 LCT 115 - Yard No 325 - Landing Craft Tank - Royal Navy - Built 1941
 
 

Leith Shipyards

 
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LCT 115 - Yard No 325 - Landing Craft Tank - Royal Navy - Built 1941

LCT_980-D-1-sml 

uk-royal-navy-flag

 The above is a photo of a similar vessel to LCT-115

(photo credit unknown)

 

 
Owners   Royal Navy
           
Registered     Keel Laid    
Type of Ship    Landing Craft Tank Launched    09/05/1941
      Commissioned    
Ship Details          
Length Overall    187' 3" Launch Details    
Length B.P.    143' 0" Weather    
Beam    30' 0" Time to Water    
Depth Mld     8' 9"      
Draught    4' 0"      
G.R.T.    586 tons      
DWT          
Complement     12 Officers and Men      
Engines    Paxman Ricardo diesels      
Props    3      
Speed    10.5 Knots      
Armament     2 x 20mm Orlikons      
Other known names   N/A    
           
Current Status   Sunk by bombing October 1943    

Content on LCT-115 will be added as and when available. 

 

 LCT_D-1
A Landing craft Tank similar to LCT-115
Ships History

Once a ship had been built and launched she then had to be out-fitted, and then complete sea trials
before being handed over to her new owners, in the case of a ship for the Royal Navy this meant she also had to be commissioned as fit for purpose, once commissioned she was then considered ready for action and would take her place in the fleet.

This Landing Craft Tank was one of the first batch of craft and may even have been one that future designs were based on. With around 800 of the vessels built during World War II. The triple screwed ships were mass produced and it was not only shipyards that were used to build these much needed vessels.

LCT-115 (Landing Craft Tank)

Built in the Leith Shipyards of Henry Robb during World War II

This Landing Craft Tank was used in the Medeterainian and was in action in the Greek islands where she was bombed and sunk by German Aircraft just of the coast of Kastellorizo one of the many small Islands that make up the Dodecanes.

She may have been taking off some of the many civillians at the time from the Islands, but this would make now difference to the attacking enemy planes.

In 1943 British commandos landed on Kastellorizo. They evacuated the whole population to Egypt to protect them from German air attacks. The most of them did not return, but took the British offer to immigrate to Australia. 

We try here to give as full an account of her history as time and research permits, if you know of missing info
or you have any photographs of her, then please get in touch and we shall update her story as we go along.

Some history on the Island of Kastellorizo

The Turks call it Maïs, the Arabs call it Mayas and the ancient name is Megisti. Kastellorizo is, With 9 sqkm and only little more than 200 inhabitants, a small and pretty island in the Dodecanese, just a few hundred Yards off the Turkish coast. All the goods the island's inhabitants need, have to be transported the long way from Rhodes or even from the Greek mainland. Fishing and tourism are the economic basics of Kastelorizo today. Old photos at the island's little museum show the pictures of the past, a big port with lots of proud sailing ships. Today Kastellorizo is a place of decay and a idyl too. There are moments when melancholy turns into beauty, when you sit in one of the port's taverns, eating some fish, drinking some wine, and watch the swallows flying in and out the kitchen door. Kastellorizo is the most easterly of all Greek Islands. This is where Europe ends and Asia Begins. The Island used to have a headcount of about 15,000. In 1920 the Italian forces occupied Kastellorizo and brought the island in the isolated location it is in until today.

 

 
Landing Ship, Tank (LST) 1942-2002

Landing Ship, Tank (LST) 1942-2002

The Landing Ship Tank (LST) is one of the most famous of the many World War II amphibious warfare ships. Capable of discharging its cargo directly on to shore and extracting itself, the LST provided the backbone of all Allied landings between 1943 and 1945, notably during the D-Day invasion. Through its history, the LST saw service from late 1942 until late 2002, when the US Navy decommissioned the USS Frederick (LST-1184), the last ship of its type. This book reveals the development and use of the LST, including its excellence beyond its initial design expectations.


Tales from the Ship

Here you will find the stories from the men and women who sailed on the ships, what was it really like to be working on a ship in a raging sea and in the pitch dark of night, the real stories some funny some sad, some good and some bad.

Dedicated to all the brave men and women who sailed the vessels from the Leith Shipyards.

Story below is from someone who served.

The crew's quarters were in the very stern of the ship and access was via a vertical ladder. Living conditions were quite primitive. There was no refrigeration and cooking was done on a stove which was also our source of heat in the crew's quarters. Just forward of the crew's mess-deck, separated by a watertight door, was the engine room containing the two large diesel engines, and two separate hand cranked diesel engines to drive the electrical generators rated at 5 kilowatts and 15 kilowatts which provided all of the DC electrical power for the ship's operation. Two very large 24 volts batteries were used for starting the main engines and these were kept charged by the generators on the diesels. They could be charged from the service generators if necessary.

Ahead of the engine room was the sparse accommodation for the troops that we carried. They had access to their accommodation from the rear end of the tank space. The basic toilet facilities were located in the same area. Immediately above the troop quarters and engine room was the bridge structure containing the officers' cabin and the wheelhouse.

The rest of the ship ahead of the bridge, the "tank space", was really a big flotation tank consisting of many water-tight compartments which could be pumped dry to increase buoyancy, or they could be flooded when we were underway with no troops or vehicles. Along each side of the tank space were water lines with hydrants for fire fighting. The entire ship's bottom was flat and this allowed good access to the beaches for unloading. There was no keel. The deck of the tank space was equipped with drainage holes, and large rings were in place for fastening the vehicles firmly to the deck so that they would stay in position during a rough passage at sea. Heavy steel chocks were used to fasten the vehicles to the anchoring rings.

At the bow (front) the landing ramp door is clearly visible (see photo above). It was a very heavy steel door, hinged at the bottom and raised and lowered by two hand-operated winches, one on either side of the forward superstructure. Each winch was operated by two men. During landings, the door would be lowered until it rested on the beach and the vehicles would drive off, frequently having to do so through water at the beach edge. On the stern deck an electrically operated capstan was used to lower and raise a kedge anchor. The kedge anchor was occasionally used as an anchor in harbour, but its main function was to assist and guide the ship as it backed off the beach. There were few amenities aboard and the men slept in hammocks. The officers had bunks in their "wardroom". They ate the same food as the crew. Drank different stuff though! 

 

Should you know of anyone who may have sailed on her, then please feel free to get in touch so that we can add the story here.

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Comments   

 
0 #1 Steve Wilkinson 2013-03-22 17:06
To whom it may concern: I am aiming to construct a Mk 4 landing craft tank or parts thereof to form the basis of a dioramma. I have acquired a set of basic plans for the same but, i am trying to obtain frame plans/drawings for the said. Any assistance would be greatly appreciated.
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