HMCS Dundurn

A ship on the water.

HMCS Dundurn Z41 / 502.

There has been only Dundurn one vessel named in the Royal Canadian Navy.

HMCS Dundurn (Z41 / 502)

The Dun Class tanker Dundurn was built originally for the Royal Canadian Navy to fill a World War II need. Prior to building Dundurn, a barge and a dredge had been converted to tankers, but they were not sufficient to answer all demands. For this reason orders were placed for the construction of two small ships, Dundurn and Dundalk. They were small tankers but had the carrying capacity sufficient to refill escort vessels for the hazardous voyages they undertook to protect merchant ship convoys as well as to maintain supplies in the storage tanks of ports along the east coast of Canada. Dundurn was built in Walkerville, Ontario and commissioned there on 25 November 1943.

Dundurn set sail for Halifax, Nova Scotia, the same day she was commissioned, in order to escape the freeze-up in the Saint-Lawrence river. On arrival, she was berthed at the Halifax Shipyards, so that the work still outstanding could be completed. On 3 May 1944, she sailed, with a cargo of oil, in a convoy to Sydney, Nova Scotia. After she had discharged the cargo, she remained Sydney to refuel escort ships lying there. This was the first of many similar voyages along the coast from Halifax to Sydney and other ports, such as Shelburne, Digby and Liverpool in Nova Scotia, Saint John, New Brunswick and St John’s Newfoundland. Occasionally, on these missions she sailed independently, but more often, while the U-boats continued to lurk in those dark waters, in convoy. After the war, Dundurn was employed in Sydney, landing storesand fuel from the escort ships that  were pending disposal.

At war’s end the navy expressed an interest to retain  Dundurn as a naval auxiliary vessel, emphasizing their preference for her over commercial tankers. Both the Atlantic and Pacific coasts required one each for ship fuelling and coast fuel deliveries. It was decided to sail Dundurn to Esquimalt, British Columbia wile her sister-ship remained in Halifax. Manned with a naval reserve crew, augmented by a few able seamen from the merchant navy, Dundurn left on 10 November 1946 in water ballast and arrived in Esquimalt on 29 December 1946. She was paid off 2 January 1947, and subsequently served with a civilian crew as Canadian Naval Auxiliary Vessel (CNAV) and Canadian Forces Auxiliary Vessel (CFAV) Dundurn,bringing oil from Vancouver, British Columbia, to the storage tanks at the base in Esquimalt and delivering to ships in refit and to those too big to go alongside the fueling jetties. She served until 1993.

  • Displacement : 950 tons
  • Dimensions: 54.5 m x 10.1 m x 4 m
  • Speed: 11 knots
  • Crew: 30
  • Armament: (wartime) one 12-pound (5.45 kg) gun and two 20-mm guns (2 x I)
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