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Royal visit to Australia May - August 1920 HMS RENOWN at Sydney, NSW

Date: 1920
Dimensions:
Overall: 178 x 248 mm, 80 kg
Medium: Ink on paper
Credit Line: ANMM Collection Gift from Peter Collins AM RFD QC
Classification:Ephemera
Object Name: Booklet
Object No: 00034298
Related Place:Sydney,

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    HistoryHMS RENOWN, lead ship of a class of two 26,500-ton battlecruisers, was built at Glasgow, Scotland. Completed in September 1916, it served with the First Battle Cruiser Squadron of the Grand Fleet in the North Sea during the remaining two years of World War I. In 1920-21, following a refit, RENOWN carried the Prince of Wales on a voyage to Australasia and America and then to India and Japan in 1921-22. During 1923-26, it was extensively refitted to increase protection against gunfire and torpedoes. After a decade of further service, RENOWN underwent a major modernisation with new anti-aircraft gun battery, aircraft-handling facilities and gunfire controls. This work was completed in September 1939, just after the outbreak of World War II and RENOWN joined the Battle Cruiser Squadron of the Atlantic Fleet.

    In late 1939, the battlecruiser was sent to the South Atlantic to search for the German armoured ship ADMIRAL GRAF SPEE. It covered minelaying operations along the Norwegian coast in early April 1940 and engaged the German battleships SCHARNHORST and GNEISENAU, damaging the latter. Later in 1940 and into 1941, RENOWN operated with Force H, based at Gibraltar providing strategic presence in both the Atlantic and Mediterranean. While there it participated in a bombardment of Genoa, Italy, in February 1941. After Home Fleet service in 1942-43, RENOWN was sent to join the Eastern Fleet in the Indian Ocean. Operating from Ceylon in 1944-45, it helped contain the Japanese in the East Indies. HMS RENOWN had brief post-war service in British waters and was sold for scrapping in March 1948.

    In 1920 the Prince of Wales visited Australia on behalf of his father King George V to thank the nation officially for its contribution to the war. He toured extensively. Wherever he went public holidays were declared, receptions and balls held, foundation stones laid and memorials unveiled. The Prince made a point of meeting ex-servicemen and women. Edward VIII was born on 23 June 1894. He served with the Commonwealth Forces in World War I. His was one of the most popular of royal visits to Australia. Journeying in the RENOWN, he visited all Australian states in addition to Barbados, California, Honolulu, Fiji, New Zealand, Samoa, Acapulco, the West Indies and Bermuda. The Prince arrived in Australia in Melbourne on 27 May and departed from the country on 18 August 1920.
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