Light cruiser HMS Danae

The light cruiser HMS Danae belonged to the same class of ships, which consisted of a total of eight ships and only the HMS Danae was completed before the end of the First World War.


Launching and design:

The light cruisers of the Danae class were developments of the already largely built cruiser C-class and its subcategories.

Since the ships of the C-class were already described as too weak armed, the newer cruisers should get a gun in addition. For this purpose, the length and width were adjusted accordingly, so that a further 6-inch gun mounted on the midship line and the total number could be increased to six.

It was powered by two Brown-Curtis steam turbines with six Yarrow boilers, allowing vessels to reach a maximum speed of up to 29 knots. They were one of the fastest cruisers of their time.

The armor, however, was not changed and remained at the sides and the command deck 76 mm. a stronger armor would have reduced the advantage of high speed.

The usual two-triplet torpedo sets were increased to four. This increase was a result of the experience of the Skagerrak battle and the advantage of torpedo attacks on capital ships.

The launch of the HMS Danae took place on January 26, 1918, the commissioning on July 22, 1918.



HMS Danae


HMS Danae


HMS Danae and HMS Delhi




Use in the war:

The HMS Danae was the only ship of the class, which was completed during the First World War.

After commissioning and testing, it was assigned to the 5th Light Cruiser Squadron. Until the end of the war, some attempts were made in the North Sea, since the German ships remained mainly in the ports and the Baltic Sea after the Battle of the Skagerrak, there was no enemy contact.




Use after the war:

After the First World War, the Danae and its sister ships HMS Dragon and HMS Dauntless supported the Lithuanian forces against the Bolsheviks during the Russian Civil War in October and November 1919.

Subsequently, it was allotted to the 1st Light Cruiser Squadron and 1923 the Special Service Squadron

With this association began a world tour that ran across the Middle East, India, Australia, North America and South America. On September 29, 1924, the ship returned to Sheerness.

After a deployment end of 1928-1929 in the 1st Cruiser Squadron in the Mediterranean, the HMS Danae was overhauled in the UK and partially modernized.

After the ship was operational again, it was assigned to the 8th Cruiser Squadron in August 1930 and sent to British West Indies until the HMS Apollo replaced the Danae in January 1936.

End of 1936, the transfer to China, where the ship from the beginning of the Japanese-Chinese War from July 7, 1937 evacuation transports from Shanghai to Hong Kong for refugees. In November 1937, the Danae was replaced by the HMS Birmingham, returned to Britain and was assigned to the reserve fleet there.




Use in the Second World War:

As political tensions continued to worsen in both Asia and Europe, the HMS Danae was reactivated in July 1939 and initially deployed in the South Atlantic, starting in October 1939 in the Indian Ocean.

On March 23, 1940, the ship was ordered to Malaya to perform there between Singapore and Dutch India patrols. The same activity was carried out from January 20, 1941 in the Chinese waters, where convoys were also accompanied.

In late February 1942, the ship had to Cape Town, where it was thoroughly overhauled and partially modernized. The work lasted until July 1943.

In March 1944, the ship was returned to Britain and assigned to the 1st Cruiser Squadron, which was part of the planned landing in northern France.

In early June 1944, the HMS Danae began to bombard the stretch of coast between Ouistreham and Saint-Aubin-sur-Mer, which was planned under the code "Sword Beach" as a landing destination for the D-Day. When the landing of the Allied soldiers was completed and bridgeheads were formed, the ship entered the conquered ports of Port-en-Bessin-Huppain and Ouistreham.

In August 1944, the ship returned to Britain and was used there as a hulk in Plymouth.

Since on July 7, 1944, the sister ship of the Danae, the HMS Dragon, which was provided to the Polish Navy was sunk, the British naval command decided to provide the Danae as a replacement and to rename ORP Conrad. The ship was handed over to Poland on 4 October 1944 and occupied with the survivors of the Dragon. Although the ship was overhauled by January 23, 1945, on April 9, it had to return to the shipyard after damage to the machinery. The work was completed only three weeks after the capitulation of Germany.



ORP Conrad




Use after the Second World War:

Beside the ORP Conrad also the HMS Zodiac, the HMS Zephyr and the HMS Zest, all British ships which were handed over to the Polish navy, in the 29. Destroyer flotilla were summarized.

Until the end of 1945, the ORP Conrad acted as a transport ship for the Polish Red Cross to transfer refugees and former forced laborers from Germany to Poland.

From January 1946, Polish destroyers ORP Błyskawica, ORP Piorun and ORP Garland carried out several exercises and maneuvers together with the Polish ships.





On September 28, 1946, the ship was returned to the Royal Navy and renamed HMS Danae again.

Due to the age and the wear the ship was on January 22, 1948 to the company T.W. Ward Company sold and scrapped until March 1948 at Barrow-in-Furness.




Ship data:


HMS Danae

Under Polish command:
ORP Conrad


Great Britain

From October 4, 1944 to September 28, 1946 Poland

Ship Type:  

Light cruiser




Armstrong Whitworth, Newcastle




January 26, 1918


July 22, 1918


Sold on January 22, 1948 and scrapped until March 1948 in Barrow-in-Furness


143,66 meters


14,03 meters


Max. 4,34 meters


Max. 5.603 tons


462 men


6 Yarrow boiler

2 Parsons geared turbines


40.000 PS (29.420 kW)

Maximum speed:  

29 kn (54 km/h)




6 x 152-mm L / 45 guns Mk XII

2 x 76.2-mm Mk-II anti-aircraft guns

2 x 40-mmm anti-aircraft guns

12 torpedo tubes


Belt 76 mm

Command tower 76 mm

Tanks 57 mm

Ammunition chambers 57 mm

Deck 25 mm






You can find the right literature here:


British Battleships of World War One

British Battleships of World War One Hardcover – November 15, 2012

This new edition of a classic work on British battleships is the most sought after book on the subject. Containing many new photographs from the author's exhaustive collection this superb reference book presents the complete technical history of British capital ship design and construction during the dreadnought era. Beginning with Dreadnought, all of the fifty dreadnoughts, 'super-dreadnoughts' and battlecruisers that served the Royal Navy during this era are described and superbly illustrated with photographs and line drawings.

Click here!



The British Battleship: 1906-1946

The British Battleship: 1906-1946 Hardcover – October 15, 2015

Norman Friedman brings a new perspective to an ever-popular subject in The British Battleship: 1906-1946. With a unique ability to frame technologies within the context of politics, economics, and strategy, he offers unique insight into the development of the Royal Navy capital ships. With plans of the important classes commissioned from John Roberts and A D Baker III and a color section featuring the original Admiralty draughts, this book offers something to even the most knowledgeable enthusiast.

Click here!



British Battlecruisers 1905-1920

British Battlecruisers 1905-1920 Hardcover – December 15, 2016

The brainchild of Admiral Sir John Fisher, battlecruisers combined heavy guns and high speed in the largest hulls of their era. Conceived as "super-cruisers" whose job it was to hunt down and destroy commerce raiders, their size and gun-power led to their inclusion in the battlefleet as a fast squadron of capital ships. This book traces in detail the development of Fisher's original idea into the first battlecruiser Invincible of 1908, through to the "Splendid Cats" of the Lion class, and culminating in HMS Hood in 1920, the largest warship in the world for the next twenty years. The origins of the unusual "light battlecruisers" of the Courageous type are also covered.

The well-publicized problems of British battlecruisers are examined, including the latest research throwing light on the catastrophic loss of three of the ships at the Battle of Jutland. The developmental history is backed by chapters covering machinery, armament, and armor, with a full listing of important technical data. The comprehensive collection of illustrations includes the author's superb drawings and original Admiralty plans reproduced in full color. This revised and updated edition of the classic work first published in 1997 will be welcomed by anyone with an interest in the most charismatic and controversial warships of the dreadnought era.

Click here!



British Battlecruiser vs German Battlecruiser: 1914–16 (Duel)

British Battlecruiser vs German Battlecruiser: 1914–16 (Duel) Paperback – November 19, 2013

Battles at Dogger Bank and Jutland revealed critical firepower, armor, and speed differences in Royal Navy and Kaiserliche Marine (Imperial German Navy) Battlecruiser designs.

Fast-moving and formidably armed, the battlecruisers of the British and German navies first encountered one another in 1915 at Dogger Bank and in the following year clashed near Jutland in the biggest battleship action of all time. In the decade before World War I Britain and Germany were locked in a naval arms race that saw the advent of first the revolutionary dreadnought, the powerful, fast-moving battleship that rendered earlier designs obsolete, and then an entirely new kind of vessel - the battlecruiser. The brainchild of the visionary British admiral John 'Jacky' Fisher, the battlecruiser was designed to operate at long range in 'flying squadrons', using its superior speed and powerful armament to hunt, outmanoeuvre and destroy any opponent. The penalty paid to reach higher speeds was a relative lack of armour, but Fisher believed that 'speed equals protection'. By 1914 the British had ten battlecruisers in service and they proved their worth when two battlecruisers, Invincible and Inflexible, sank the German armoured cruisers Scharnhorst and Gneisenau off the Falklands in December 1914.

Based on a divergent design philosophy that emphasised protection over firepower, the Germans' battlecruisers numbered six by January 1915, when the rival battlecruisers first clashed at Dogger Bank in the North Sea. By this time the British battlecruisers had been given a new role - to locate the enemy fleet. Five British battlecruisers accompanied by other vessels intercepted and pursued a German force including three battlecruisers; although the battle was a British tactical victory with neither side losing any of its battlecruisers, the differences in the designs of the British and German ships were already apparent. The two sides responded very differently to this first clash; while the Germans improved their ammunition-handling procedures to lessen the risk of disabling explosions, the British drew the opposite lesson and stockpiled ammunition in an effort to improve their rate of fire, rendering their battlecruisers more vulnerable. The British also failed to improve the quality of their ammunition, which had often failed to penetrate the German ships' armour.

These differences were highlighted more starkly during the battle of Jutland in May 1916. Of the nine British battlecruisers committed, three were destroyed, all by their German counterparts. Five German battlecruisers were present, and of these, only one was sunk and the remainder damaged. The limitations of some of the British battlecruisers' fire-control systems, range-finders and ammunition quality were made clear; the Germans not only found the range more quickly, but spread their fire more effectively, and the German battlecruisers' superior protection meant that despite being severely mauled, all but one were able to evade the British fleet at the close of the battle. British communication was poor, with British crews relying on ship-to-ship flag and lamp signals even though wireless communication was available. Even so, both sides claimed victory and the controversy continues to this day.

Click here!






This post is also available in: Deutsch (German) Français (French) Italiano (Italian) 简体中文 (Chinese (Simplified)) Русский (Russian) Español (Spanish) العربية (Arabic)

Comments are closed.

error: Content is protected !!