Assault and Assault Escort

Ex Mormacpenn,
Ex USS Block Island
Ex HMS Trailer
Became Almdijk 1948


HMS Hunter was built in the USA at Ingalls, Pascagoula on 15 May 1941, laid down as mercantile Mormacpenn 22 May 1942, and purchased by the USN on 9 January 1943 as USS Block Island ACV-8. She was subsequently transferred to the Royal Navy and renamed HMS Trailer, but renamed on commissioning on 11 January 1943 as HMS Hunter.

HMS Hunter, as part of the "Attacker" Class were the second batch of escort carriers built in the USA for the Royal Navy, the lead ship - Attacker - having originally been intended to be one of the "Avenger" Class. They were also the first escort carriers to be ordered after the USA entered the war; the USN kept the other 10 vessels ordered at the same time, as these became the "Bogue" Class. Once the ships were ready for action they soon proved themselves, both as convoy escorts and fighter support ships for amphibious landings.

HMS Hunter's war service included the Atlantic, Mediterranean and East Indies, where she saw action in an "Assault Carrier" role in Salerno landings in 1943, the Aegean in 1944 and subsequently in Burma and Malaya in 1945.

HMS Hunter was returned to the USN on 29 December 1945 and scrapped in 1965.

Battle Honours

Atlantic 1939 - 44, Salerno 1943, South France 1944, Aegean 1944, Burma 1945, Malaya 1945


Squadrons and Aircraft

FAA squadrons embarked Dates Aircraft type
813 dt March-April 1943 Swordfish II
834 July-Aug 1943 Swordfish II
899 Aug 1943-Oct 1943 Seafire IIc
808 Oct 1943-Feb 1944 Seafire L.IIc
807 Jan 1944-Dec 1944 Seafire L.IIc
1700 dt April-Sept 1945 Walrus I
807 March-Oct 1945 Seafire LIII

Associations and Reunions
No information

Carrier name HMS Hunter
laid down as mercantile Mormacpenn 1942
1943 as USS Block Island ACV-8
renamed HMS Trailer 1943
Became mercantile Almdijk 1948
Class Attacker
Type Assault Escort Carrier (US built)
Ships in Class Attacker, Battler, Chaser, Fencer, Hunter, Pursuer, Ravager, Searcher, Stalker, Striker, Tracker
Tonnage Net displacement 9,800 tons, Gross displacement, Load 6,900 tons 
Engines 2 Foster-Wheeler boilers, 2 Westinghouse geared turbines driving 1 shaft at 8500 shp
Speed in Knots 18.5 knots
Armament Gun 1 x 2 x 4" L/50 AA, 4x 2 x 40mm Bofors AA 10-35 x 20mm Oerlikon AA 
Crew Complement 646 Officers & Ratings excluding Air Group
Length (ft/inches) 496
Beam (ft/inches) 69'6''
Draught (ft/inches) 26
Flight Deck length (ft/inches) 480
Flight Deck width (ft/inches) 70
Number of aircraft carried up to 24
Fate of carrier  Scrapped at Valencia Oct 1965

 NavSource Photo Archives Escort Carriers: HMS Hunter Navsource archives/photos of HMS HUNTER
The aircraft profiles by Scott Fraser, owner of Tally Ho! decals eg Seafire L.III The following profiles are offered by Scott Fraser, owner of Tally Ho! decals, Seafire L.III, NN212, 887 Squadron, HMS Indefatigable, Seafire L.III, PR171, 807 Squadron, HMS Hunter Burmese Coast, May 1945
World Aircraft Carrier Lists and Photo Gallery - from 1913 to 2000. Naval History Information Center, Haze Gray & Underway
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). Jane's London 1941 1st ed. 

Jane's Fighting Ships of World War II by Francis E. McMurtrie (Editor)(1984). 320 pages. Crescent Books; ISBN: 0517679639

       Last Modified: 23-2-2001


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