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Original box for WWII RAN Operational map plotting model Australian light cruiser HMAS HOBART

Date: c 1939 - 1945
Dimensions:
Overall: 25 x 183 x 48 mm
Medium: Cardboar, ink
Credit Line: ANMM Collection
Classification:Tools and equipment
Object Name: Box
Object No: 00051362
Related Place:Nihon, Hobart, Solomon Islands, Devonport, Soomaaliya, Papua New Guinea, Mediterranean Sea,

User Terms

    Description
    Scale lead models of naval ships were used by the RAN to plot specific vessels on maps during war operations planning.

    HMAS HOBART was transferred from the Royal Navy in 1938. It was a Modified Leander Class Light Cruiser built by HM Dockyard in Devonport, England and was originally commissioned as HMS APOLLO on 13 January 1936. The vessel served in many World War II naval operations around the Arabian Sea and the Pacific arena, frequently coming under heavy attack.
    SignificanceThis lead scale model of the HOBART is an example of the tools and equipment used during wartime operational planning. The HOBART was active in the Arabian Sea and Pacific arena during World War II and survived numerous air attacks from enemy forces.
    HistoryScale lead models of naval ships were used by the RAN to plot specific vessels on maps during war operations planning.

    HMAS HOBART was transferred from the Royal Navy in 1938. It was a Modified Leander Class Light Cruiser built by HM Dockyard in Devonport, England and was originally commissioned as HMS APOLLO on 13 January 1936. The vessel was on patrol and search duties in Bass Strait when World War II broke out. In October 1939 HOBART sailed for war service and spent the first few months escorting convoys in the Bay of Bengal and the Arabian Sea. HOBART was the ocean escort from Colombo for the first contingent of the Australian Imperial Force bound for the Middle East in Convoy US1.

    In June 1940 HOBART was at Aden when Italy entered the war, using the ships anti-aircraft guns for the first time against an enemy; Italian aircraft during a raid on Aden. In August the cruiser was the operational headquarters for the evacuation of Berbera (Somaliland). These involved building pontoons, providing ship to shore communications and security platoons to maintain order on land, towing motor boats, running troops, and providing crew for tugboats. HOBART bombed the town itself while the ship's aircraft, the Walrus, bombed Italian headquarters, machine gun posts and Italian staff cars.

    Following the evacuation HOBART continued patrol and escort duties as a unit of the Red Sea Force until October 1940. A re-fit of the vessel was done at Colombo in December which then returned to Australia for escort duties on the Australian Station.

    In August 1941 HOBART joined the Mediterranean Fleet and encountered action at Suez with heavy raids by dive bombers setting the GEORGIC alight which then collided with the GLENEARN. HOBART spent the night evacuating the crew and passengers from the GEORGIC to safety and refloating the GLENEARN. Later HOBART provided support to the campaign in the Western Desert, the reinforcement of Cyprus, operations against Syria and other Mediterranean operations.

    Once Japan entered the war, HOBART transferred to the Far East waters and experienced severe bombing and air attacks on many occasions. The ship was involved in elements of the Battle of the Coral Sea in May 1942 and the American landings on Guadalcanal and Tulagi in the Solomon Islands.

    On 20 July 1943 HOBART took a direct strike from a Japanese submarine torpedo whilst at sea and suffered severe damage and some casualties. Extensive repairs kept the vessel out of service until 1945.

    On return to service, HOBART was involved in providing cover and bombardments for a number of troop landings including in April at Tarakan in Borneo, in May near Wewak (Papua New Guinea), in June off Brunei, and at Balikpapan in July. HOBART was also present in Tokyo Bay in August when the Japanese surrendered.

    Following the end of the war the vessel spent two years in service as part of the Australian Squadron stationed in Japanese waters. HOBART was paid off into the Reserve in December 1947 and underwent a refit between 1953 and 1956. In February 1960 it was officially added to the list of obsolete RAN ships to be sold for scrap. A Japanese firm bought the vessel and it was broken up in April 1962.

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