INDEX OF NAVAL
MAC-ship Auxillary Ship
Became Rotula 1950
Further MAC conversions, this time from tankers. This conversion was conceived and designed by the shipping company which owned the ships; the plan was initially rejected by the Navy but later accepeted. Generally similar to previous MAC conversions.
The RN Rapana class was identical to the Gadila class of Gadila and Macoma Dutch manned MAC-ships and operated under RN control, but crewed by Dutch merchant crews. The Merchant Aircraft Carriers (MACs) were an emergency measure to provide air support for convoys. They did not have pennant numbers, but did have two-letter flight deck codes assigned.
Operated as an Atlantic escort throughout the war. Returned to merchant service postwar; named Rotula in 1950.Scrapped at Hong Kong starting 1/1958.
Surviving Fairey Swordfish LS326 of the Royal Navy Historic Flight saw active service flying on North Atlantic convoy duties with ‘L’ Flight of 836 Squadron on board the MAC ship ‘Rapana’ (see the Royal Navy Historic Flight website).
No information on Captains.
Squadrons and Aircraft
FAA squadrons embarked Dates Aircraft type 836 1944-1945 Swordfish II
Surviving swordfish LS325 which flew with MV Rapana in WWII
Associations and Reunions
Ship name Rapana Class Rapana Class (tankers) Type Merchant aircraft carrier (MAC-ship) Ships in Class Rapana, Ancylus, Acavus, Alexia, Amastra, Miralda, Adula Launched Tonnage Displacement: 16,000 tons full load Engines Propulsion: Diesel, 1 shaft, 4,000 bhp Speed in Knots 11.5 knots Armament Armament: 1 4 inch, 2 40 mm, 6 20 mm Crew Complement 118 Range Length (ft/inches) 481 Beam (ft/inches) 60 Draught (ft/inches) 27.5 Flight Deck length (ft/inches) Flight Deck width (ft/inches) Armour None Number of aircraft carried 4 Fate of carrier Notes
FURTHER INFORMATION Further Information by British forces.com Swordfish LS326 and the Royal Navy Historic Flight Information about the Royal Navy Historic Flight and about the sole surviving aircraft that flew from Rapana in the Second World War. Escort Carriers of World War Two - by Poolman, Kenneth (1989). Published by Arms & Armour. ISBN 0853689520