HMS Albion

Light Fleet Carrier
Albion was built by Swan Hunter, laid down 23 March 1944, launched 6 May 1947 and completed 26 May 1954.

Bulwark and her sister ship Albion took part in the Suez attacks on Egypt in 1956, but were then converted to helicopter carriers in 1959-60 and 1961-62, respectively. Carrying 700-900 Royal Marines and embarking 16 Westland Wessex helicopters, they served off Aden and during the crisis with Indonesia in 1966.

Albion was paid off for conversion to amphibious-assault helicopter carrier at Portsmouth Dockyard 17 December 1960. Recommissioned at Portsmouth August 1962. Arrived at Portsmouth to de-store 10 October 1972. Paid off 2 March 1973.

Sold for conversion to heavy lift ship 22 October 1973, conversion cancelled. Broken up at Faslane from 16 November 1973.

Battle Honours
No WWII Battle Honours.

No WWII Captains.

HMS Albion Christmas Menu 1958

Squadrons and Aircraft
No WWII squadrons and aircraft in 1939-1945.

Associations and Reunions

HMS Albion (1962-64)/846 Royal Naval Air Squadron Reunion Association Dave Scowen, 34a Louvain Road, Horns Cross, Greenhithe, Kent, DA9 9DZ (ref 1998).

HMS Bulwark, Albion and Centaur Association
Contact: Email:

Chairman: Frank Jones
Secretary: John Truscott
49 Padnell Avenue, Cowplain, Waterlooville, Hants. PO8 8DT. Tel. 02392 431150 (Email:

Newsletter "R08"

Email Editor:

See HMS Albion website- Don's Green Goffer Page. The H.M.S. Albion Shake-Down.

Carrier name HMS Albion
Class Centaur
Type Light Fleet Aircraft Carrier
Ships in Class Albion, Centaur, Hermes, Bulwark, Elephant, Monmouth, Arrogant & Polyphemus
Launched Built by Swan Hunter. Laid down March 1944. Launched May 1947. Completed May 1954. 
Tonnage Albion and Bulwark, as built: Displacement: 22,00 tons standard ; 27,800 tons full load 
Engines Propulsion: 4 Admiralty 3-drum boilers, 2 shafts, Parsons geared turbines, 78,000 shp
Speed in Knots Speed: 28 knots
Armament Armament: 2 sextuple Bofors 40 mm AA ; 8 twin Bofors 40 mm ; 4 single Bofors 40 mm ; 4 single 3 pdr saluting guns
Crew Complement Complement: 1596 (including air group)
Range  Range: 6,000 nmiles at 20 knots ; 4,083 tons fuel oil
Length (ft/inches) Dimensions: 737.75 oa x 123 x 27.8 feet
Beam (ft/inches)  
Draught (ft/inches)  
Flight Deck length (ft/inches)  
Flight Deck width (ft/inches)  
Armour Armour: 1 to 2 inch flight deck
Number of aircraft carried Aircraft: up to 42
Fate of carrier De-store October 1972. Paid off March 1973. Broken up from November 1973. 
Notes Due to differences in completion and refits, the technical details for Centaur and Hermes are listed individually.

Eight ships of the Centaur class were ordered during the second world war as enlarged follow-ons to the Majestics, with more powerful machinery allowing fleet speeds. Four ships (Hermes, Monmouth, Arrogant & Polyphemus) were cancelled in October 1945, the first two of which had been laid down and were broken up on the slipway. To maintain the famous carrier name, one of the ships to be completed, Elephant, was renamed Hermes. Of the four ships completed only the first, Centaur, was completed to the original design with an axial flight deck although a small extension was soon added to allow an angled landing area. 

"HMS Albion 1944 - 1973" The Old grey Ghost, by Neil McCart
World Aircraft Carrier Lists and Photo Gallery - from 1913 to 2000. Naval History Information Center, Haze Gray & Underway  American based World Aircraft Carrier Lists & Photo Gallery - one of the definitive online sources for British and world aircraft carrier & seaplane tender data, histories and images - over 1000 photos. 
 Sturtivant, R & Ballance, T  (1994). 'The Squadrons of the Fleet Air Arm' Published by Air Britain (Historians) Ltd, 1994 ISBN: 0 85130 223 8

The World’s Warships 1941 by Francis E. McMurtrie (1944). Janes London 1941 1st ed. 

Jane's Fighting Ships of World War II by Francis E. McMurtrie (Editor)(1944). 320 pages. Crescent Books; ISBN: 0517679639

        Last Modified: 23-2-2001


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