HOME OF THE LADY DENMAN - Local history isn't always about the big story - the everyday story of life in the early development of the region can be a fascinating, entertaining and educational journey.

22 August 2017

Submarines in the Bay.

Submarines have had a long association with Jervis Bay.  As far back as 1915 when the Royal Australian Naval College was being constructed at Captains Point.   At the time it was proposed to construct a basin, which would provide for destroyers and submarines, docks for larger ships, and floating docks.

In 1946 during joint British and Australian Naval exercises the British Navy assembled quite a flotilla of submarines inside Jervis Bay.



In the 1950's the prospect of a submarine base surfaced again when newspapers reported Jervis bay was going to be the site of Australias first major Submarine Base.   "Conferences between Navy Board chiefs and Federal Housing engineers are taking place."


Soon after the reports appeared in the newspapers the Minister for Navy, Mr J. Francis denied the reports saying, " the present base as H.M.A.S Penguin, Balmoral, Sydney Harbour,  was adequate for present needs." he went on to say. " the Navy and Works and Housing departments were investigating a proposal that a berth in which a submarine could  be kept should be built at Jervis Bay,  A berth was needed there so that one of the Royal Navy submarines based in Sydney could make periodic visits."

At the time of the announcement two British submarines H.M.S Telemachus, and H.M.S. Thorough, were conducting exercises with the Australian Navy in the waters off Jervis Bay.


H.M.S Telemachus surfacing in Jervis Bay, 1950.

hms thorough in jervis bay 1950
H.M.S. Thorough,  seen here entering Jervis Bay in convoy with the Australian Navy, 1950.

Interesting comparison between H.M.S Telemachus and the Collins Class submarine of today.


REF: http://s3-ap-southeast-2.amazonaws.com/news-networkeditorial/network/interac/longform/submarinedossier/index.html


May 1963.
The Tabard reported a bent fin and "superficial" damage. Tabard was one of three Royal Navy submarines based in Sydney for anti-submarine exercises with the R.A.N. and the R.A.A.F. Such a collision could lead to disaster for the submariners in the remote chance of serious hull damage.


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