The Loftsman
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 HMS HAZEL - Yard No 299 - Tree Class Armed Trawler - Royal Navy - Built 1939

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HMS HAZEL - Yard No 299 - Tree Class Armed Trawler - Royal Navy - Built 1939


 HMS ACACIA "Tree Class" Armed Trawler the same class as HMS HAZEL (Imperial war museum photo)  
Owners   Royal Navy
Registered     Keel Laid    16/08/1939
Type of Ship    Armed Trawler/Minesweeper Launched    27/12/1939
Ship Details          
Length Overall     Launch Details    
Length B.P.    150' 0" Weather    
Beam    27' 6" Time to Water    
Depth Mld    14' 6"      
Draught    11' 1"      
G.R.T.    463 tons      
Complement     35      
Engines    One triple expansion reciprocal engine producing 850 ihp      
Props    1      
Speed    12 knots      
Armament     1 x 12 pdr Gun, assorted anti-aircraft machine guns, 30 depth charges.      
Other known names        
Current Status   HMS HAZEL survived the war and was then sold on by the Royal Navy.    
Content on HMS HAZEL will be added as and when available. 
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.

HMS HAZEL was one of many such armed trawlers ordered in the run up to the start of World War II.

She was a "Tree Class" armed trawler used in a variety of roles but primarily used for coastal escort duties and for mine sweeping.



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.

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.

"The strength and endurance of the Tree Class Anti-Submarine Trawlers were exemplified by H.M.S. "Hazel" during her eleven months service in northern waters.

She was unlucky during this commission – unlucky in two ways. Whatever convoy she escorted on any route, she ran into no enemy, but plenty of bad weather. Even on her way home she ran into gales and one of her boats was stove in. But she with-stood everything and always returned safely to her base.

Once the ship was kept pinned to a quay by a gale for three days, and on another occasion, when a big merchant ship alongside was blown out of harbour, the crew of "Hazel" stayed up all night in a successful effort to hold the ship to her buoy.

The gale blew a house down and broke windows all over the town.

The ship's Commanding Officer was the lieut.-Commander R. Dwyer, R.N.R. and he frequently drove the ship through 30 feet seas "It was like being on a gigantic scenic railway" he said". 

These little fighting ships did there part in the conflict that engulfed the world from 1939 to 1945, and they sailed in some of the harshest sea conditions to be found anywhere. 

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

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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0 #1 Adam Amos 2013-10-31 11:51
My grandfather sailed in this ship as chief petty officer on voyage to Murmansk(Russia ) also Reykjavik (Iceland) and St. John(new foundland-his name was Thomas Milne-1913-1999

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