As minesweeper, 1942-43

John Stevenson Collection

Official No:  139924    Port Number and Year:   Grimsby, 1916 (GY994)

                                                                                  Aberdeen, 1941 (A518)

                                                                                  Grimsby, 1944 (GY18)

                                                                                  Leith, 1951 (LH92)

Description: Steel side trawler, steam screw, coal burning. Ketch rigged

Crew: 10 men (1916).

Built: 1916 by Cook, Welton & Gemmell, Beverley.  (Yard no. 342)

Tonnage: 274 grt  123 net

Length / breadth / depth (feet): 125.6  / 22.8  / 12.2

Engine: T.3-cyl; 79 rhp;  by Charles D. Holmes, Hull



As GY994

10 Nov 1916: William Grant, Fish Dock Rd., Grimsby.

Managing owner.


13 Apr 1927: John W. Grant, 'Hill Crest', Mill Rd., Cleethorpes, Lincs.

Managing owner.


28 Feb 1930: Rugby Steam Fishing Co. Ltd., Fish Dock Rd., Grimsby.

Managers: John Wilfred Grant, 'Hillcrest', Mill Rd., Cleethorpes. (1930-32)

                                                    'Firclose', Louth, Lincs. (1932-33)


1933: Harry Robinson, Fish Docks, Grimsby.

Managing owner.


14 Aug 1939: The Earl Steam Fishing Co. Ltd., Fish Docks, Grimsby.

Manager: Sir Alec Black, Bt., 'Field House', Grimsby.


10 Dec 1940: Sir Alec Black, Bt., 'Field House', Grimsby.

Managing owner.


As A518

25 Sep 1941: North Star Steam Fishing Co., Aberdeen

Manager: John Alexander Harrow.


As GY18

16 Nov 1944: Parkholme Trawlers, Grimsby.

Manager: Harvey Wilfred Wilson.


29 Mar 1946: Tilbrook Trawlers (A.J. Tilbrook), Docks, Milford.

Manager: Arthur Ernest Rees, Rosemarket, Neyland.


7 Aug 1948: J. Croan, 408 Ferry Rd., Edinburgh.

Managing owner.

Apr 1951: As LH92


Landed at Milford: 2 Jul 1946 - 4 Aug 1947.

Skippers:  Jack Utting, 1946.


Nov 1916: Requisitioned by the Admiralty and converted to a minesweeper (; 1x6 pdr. AA, 1x7.5" bomb thrower.

Nov 1917: As RUGBY II

1919: Returned to owners, and reverted to original name.

May 1940: Requisitioned by the Admiralty and converted to an auxiliary patrol vessel (P.No. 4.162).

Based at Grimsby for Fishery Protection.

Mar 1942: Converted to a minesweeper.

Oct 1943: Fitted out as a fuelling trawler (Esso); 33 ton tank for refuelling diesel landing craft. (P.No.Y7.30).
Jun 1944: Operation Neptune-Normandy Landings. Assigned as a fuelling trawler to Force G.
3 Jul 1944: Operation Neptune ended. Reverted to miscellaneous naval duties.

May 1946: Returned to owners.

9 Aug 1947: Fishing out of Hull.

24 Mar 1955: Broken up at Inverkeithing.

9 Jul 1955: Leith registry closed “Vessel broken up”.

[Information supplied by the Fleetwood Maritime Heritage Trust and the Bosun's Watch website.]

Accidents and Incidents

From the West Wales Guardian of Friday 24th May 1946:


    Two weekend additions to the Milford fleet have left on their maiden voyages from the port.  Yesterday the Westcar, purchased by the Westward Trawling Co., from Messrs. F. & T. Ross, of Hull, left in charge of Skipper Frank Armitage.  She is a 135 footer, built in 1915, and has been on war service.

    Also on her way to the fishing grounds with Skipper Utting and Mate James Hastings is the steam trawler Rugby, which arrived in Milford last weekend from Grimsby for Messrs. Tillbrook Trawlers. 

    Great interest was taken in the arrival yesterday of the 140 feet super-Castle trawler Gunner, purchased by United Trawlers Ltd., from a Grimsby firm.  Built in 1927, the ship has been doing Iceland and Bear Island fishing.  She will probably sail on her maiden voyage from the port on Monday under Skipper Albert Riby.



From the West Wales Guardian of Friday 8th August 1947:


    The steam trawler Rugby, belonging to the Tilbrook Trawling Company, left on Wednesday for the port of Hull, where she will continue fishing. Another trawler for the firm will arrive in Milford shortly.



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