Make your own free website on Tripod.com
Ahoy - Mac's Web Log
Mackenzie J Gregory
Home
Flag of Australia

We've moved to an improved host, please update your bookmarks.  You will automatically be directed to the new site but if you aren't, please click here: http://ahoy.tk-jk.net.

Anzac Class Frigate HMAS Warramunga. FFH-152


Warramunga doing sea trials before commissioning last year.
HMAS Warramunga doing sea trials before commissioning last year.
I'm excited, as a member of HMAS Warramunga Association I have been invited on board the second ship to carry that name.

On Friday next 10 of us will board this Frigate in Port Phillip Bay, and sail in her back to her berth at Station Pier Port Melbourne.  This is a photo of her doing sea trials before commissioning last year.

Will you keep it please, and I will look for a photo of my Warramunga, which was one of three Tribal Class Australian built ships. They were, Arunta, Warramunga, both named after Australian Aboriginal Tribes, and the third was Bataan, in honour of Mac Arthur's and the US Army stand at Corregidor on the Bataan Peninsula in the Philippines in WW2.

Follow this link to learn more about it.

 

 

Anzac Class Frigate HMAS Warramunga. FFH-152

Anzac Class Frigate
Selected in 1989, the ANZAC ship design is based upon the German MEKO 200 frigate. Modular construction methods are employed with sections of the ships fabricated in two locations- Williamstown in Victoria, Australia, and Whangarei in New Zealand. Eight of this class are being built for Australia, and a further two ships have been built for NZ.

HMAS Anzac, the first of this class was launched on the 16th. of September 1994, and commissioned on the 18th. of May 1996.

HMAS Warramunga
Warramunga, the fifth ship in the frigate programme was launched on the 23rd. of May 1998, and commissioned on the 31st.of March 2001.

A combined diesel or gas propulsion plant allows the ship to sustain speeds in excess of 27 knots with an operational range of 6,000 nautical miles.

Main Armament
Comprises one 5 inch (127mm) gun capable of firing 20 rounds a minute, ship launched Mk. 46 torpedoes, and a Mk. 41 vertical launch system for the Evolved Sea Sparrow point defence system.

Warramunga is the first warship in the world to be fitted with the Sea Sparrow Missile anti-missile defence system.

Ship dimensions and crew numbers
The ship has an overall length of 118 metres with a beam of 14.8 metres, and displaces 3,800 tonnes.

With the chopper crew embarked, the complement is 173 Officers and Sailors.

Kaman Super Seasprite Helicopter
A single Kaman Super Seasprite helicopter is carried, with its sensors and Penguin anti-ship missiles, significantly enhansing its anti-submarine and anti-surface warfare capabilities.

Ship visit on Friday the 7th. of June 2002
Ten members of HMAS Warramunga Association including myself, all of whom served at different times in the first ship to bear this name after the Australian Aboriginal Tribe Warumungu.  On Friday the 7th. of June 2002 We were picked up by bus at Station Pier, Port Melbourne to travel about an hour and a half to Point Wilson, a remote ammunitioning depot, located on Port Phillip Bay, where the ship had been loading her ammunition.

Warramunga has been deployed as part of Australia's two ocean strategy, in Western Australia, and she will be home based just south of Perth. To reach her base, she will sail east about the Australian coast via Jervis Bay for working up exercises, a week in Sydney, visit Darwin, and then take up Border Protection duties in the vicinity of Christmas Island in the Indian Ocean.

Arrival on Board
It was quite a thrill to march up the gangway of one of Her Majesty's Australin Ships, salute the Quarterdeck, and be greeted and welcomed on board, by the Commanding Officer, and the Officer of the Watch.

We were taken to the Wardroom for a very nice buffet lunch, then toured the ship before slipping from the ammunitioning wharf, and setting a course for Station Pier, at Port Melbourne.

Fleet Commander arrives on board
Rear Admiral Smith RAN, the fleet commander based in Sydney, had flown to Melbourne and driven down, as did we, to join the ship for his inspection of this addition to his sea going command. He was accompanied by his Flag Lieutenant, who happened to be a female Lieutenant, and his Command Warrant Officer.

We were all able to talk to him in the Wardroom, I used the occasion to ask for one of his ships to visit Melbourne over August 9th. next, to help commemorate the 60th. anniversary of the sinking of the heavy 8 inch Cruiser HMAS Canberra, on the 9th. of August 1942. Although very sympathetic to my plea, the Admiral was at pains to explain how stretched  was his fleet, with Border Protection, duty in the Gulf, and Fishing Protection duties in  the Southern Ocean. He added, in all my many years of Naval Service, I have never seen the Navy so commited, it is as if we are on a Wartime footing. So, no luck there.

Bridge Visit
The modern day naval ship now has a totally closed bridge, something different for me, all my time at sea was spent on an open bridge, and I am afraid I would take time to become used to being locked up in a closed bridge environment.

The ship was trialling a new navigational aid, a laptop computer with a CD carrying  all the Australian Charts, had a Global Positioning System plugged into it, the laptop screen now showed the appropiate Port Phillip chart with a continuously updated course and position of the ship. What a wonderful aid for the often harassed Officer of the Watch, the ship's Navigating Officer, and her Commanding Officer.

We sailed along at a serene 22.5 knots, with the bows knifing through the waves, it was truly wonderful to once again be on the bridge of a Naval ship underway.

Arrival at Port Melbourne
The Captain took his command alongside Station pier, starboard side to with the minimum of fuss, and Admiral Smith briefed the Ship's Company on their coming important deployment in the Indian Ocean.

We departed about 1630 ( 4.30 PM ) very satisfied to once again having taken part in the daily routine and a short trip in a seagoing ship of the Royal Australian Navy.

Post Script
The visit of ten veterans of the first HMAS Warramunga, was marked by the presentation to each of us, of a fine coloured photograph of her successor, with the famous Sydney Harbour Bridge and the Opera House as a backdrop.

This photo is reproduced with this article, for all visitors to my Web Log to enjoy.

HMAS Warramunga in Sydney Harbour

 

Back to weblog home

This site was created as a resource for educational use and the promotion of historical awareness.  All rights of publicity of the individuals named herein are expressly reserved, and, should be respected consistent with the reverence in which this memorial site was established.

Copyright 1984/2002  THE NAVAL HISTORICAL SOCIETY OF AUSTRALIA, INC and Mackenzie J. Gregory All rights reserved