Allied Warships

Destroyers

E class

10 ships


The destroyer HMS Encounter of the Royal Navy. She was lost on 1 Mar 1942.

Technical information

TypeDestroyer
Displacement1405 BRT 
Length329 feet (oa) 
Complement145 men 
Armament

4 4.7" guns (4x1)
8 .5" AA (2x4)
8 21" torpedo tubes (2x4) 

Max speed36 knots
EnginesGeared turbines, 2 shafts 
Power36000 HP 
Notes on class

The specifications as listed above are for the 'normal' E-class destroyers. HMS Exmouth was fitted as flotilla leader and had some different specifications;
Displacement: 1495 BRT
Complement: 175 men
Lenght: 343 feet (oa)
Armament:
5 4.7" guns (5x1)
8 .5" AA (2x4)
8 21" torpedo tubes (2x4)
Speed: 36.75 knots
Power: 38000 HP
With the E-class the Admiralty decided to revert to the enlarged flotilla leader with extra speed and armament based on the A-class leader HMS Codrington.

The E-class were fitted with .5" AA machine guns for Anti-Aircraft defence. These machine guns were not very useful. This was realised as early as 1932 by the Admiralty. Nevertheless the E-class and later destroyer classes were fitted with these machine guns. Also the lack of a good AA director had been realised but when the Second World War broke out little had been undertaken to solve this problem. The 4.7" guns were on new mountings allowing 40° elevation compared to 30° in the earlier classes.

HMS Esk and HMS Express were designed to be modified in 24 hours to the mine laying role. This involved removing of 'A' and 'Y' 4.7" guns and all the torpedo tubes and the installation of mine rails along the upper deck. They could carry 60 mines. 


All ships of the E class


Royal Canadian Navy (more on Royal Canadian Navy)

HMCS Gatineau (H 61)


Royal Navy (more on Royal Navy)

HMS Echo (H 23) (To Royal Hellenic Navy as RHS Navarinon)
HMS Eclipse (H 08) Lost on 24 Oct 1943
HMS Electra (H 27) Lost on 27 Feb 1942
HMS Encounter (H 10) Lost on 1 Mar 1942
HMS Escapade (H 17)
HMS Escort (H 66) Lost on 11 Jul 1940
HMS Esk (H 15) Lost on 31 Aug 1940
HMS Express (H 61) (Became the Canadian destroyer Gatineau)


Royal Hellenic Navy (more on Royal Hellenic Navy)

RHS Navarinon (H 23) (ex. HMS Echo)

Flotilla leader


Royal Navy (more on Royal Navy)

HMS Exmouth (H 02) Lost on 21 Jan 1940


10 Destroyers (11 names) of the E class. 6 of them were lost.

See all Destroyer classes.


E class ships hit by U-boats (1)

21 Jan 1940HMS ExmouthSunkU-22


The last stand of the tin can sailors

Hornfischer, James D.

Books dealing with this subject include:

200,000 Miles Aboard the Destroyer Cotten, Robinson, C. Snelling, 1999
A Home on the Rolling Main, A G F Ditcham, 2013
Afridi to Nizam – British Fleet Destroyers 1937 – 43, English, John, 2003
Arctic Convoy PQ8, Michael Wadsworth, 2010
The Battle of Tassafaronga, Russell Syndnor Crenshaw, 2010
Battlestations, Veronico, Nicholas A., 2001
Blood on the Sea, Parkin, Robert Sinclair, 1996
A Blue Water Navy, WAB Douglas, R. Sarty, M. Whitby et al., 2007
British destroyers & frigates, Norman Friedman, 2006
British Destroyers 1892 to 1953, March, Edgar J, 2003
British Destroyers in World War Two, Burt, R.A., 1986
Cadillac of Destroyers, Barrie, Ron and Macpherson, Ken, 1996
Cape Hatteras, Lloyd, Keith Warren, 2008
The Captain Class Frigates in the Second World War, Collingwood, Donald, 1999
Capturing Enigma, Harper, Stephen, 2000 (transl.)



Return to the Allied Warships section