S.T. Daily Express FD286


Admiralty Number: 4404
Official Number: 144518
Yard Number: 420
As built: 360disp 125.6 x 23.5 x 12.8 feet
Gross Tonnage: 290
Net Tonnage: 109
Length: 125.5 ft
Breadth: 23.6 ft
Depth: 12.7 ft
Built: Cook, Welton & Gemmell, Beverley
Engine: 480ihp T3-cyl by Amos & Smith Ltd, Hull
Speed: 10.5 knots


18.7.1919: Launched by Cook, Welton & Gemmell Ltd, Beverley (Yd.No.420) (“Castle” class) for The Admiralty as THOMAS ALEXANDER (Ad.No.4404).
1.1920: Allocated to the National Fishery Scheme for the setting up of the Minesweepers’ Cooperative Trawling Society Ltd, London.
23.4.1920: Registered by The Admiralty at London (Part I & IV) as THOMAS ALEXANDER O.N.144518 (LO351).
4.6.1920: Completed as a fishing vessel under Special Survey of Lloyd’s Register and classed 100A1 Stm Trawler at Hull; ex fishing gear.
13.8.1920: Minesweepers’ Cooperative Trawling Society Ltd, London registered.
1921: Sold to Rémy & Huret, Boulogne.
9.8.1921: London registry closed.
8.1921: Registered at Boulogne as ETOILE POLAIRE II (B??)
1930: Sold to Fred Parkes, Blackpool.
2.1930: Boulogne registry closed.
21.2.1930: Registered at Fleetwood as DAILY EXPRESS (FD68). Fred Parkes, Blackpool designated as managing owner.
13.11.1933: Sold to Hellyer Brothers Ltd, Hull.
24.11.1933: Fleetwood registry closed.
25.11.1933: Registered at Hull (H523).
22.12.1933: Registered at Hull as TURCOMAN (H523). Frank O. Hellyer & Owen S. Hellyer designated joint managers.
21.9.1936: Sold to R. Irvin & Sons Ltd, Aberdeen.
30.9.1936: Hull registry closed.
1.10.1936: Registered at Aberdeen (A416). Sir John H. Irvin KBE designated manager.
23.10.1936: Registered at Aberdeen as BEN DEARG (A416).
29.8.1939: Requisitioned for war service as a minesweeper (P.No. FY.690) (Hire rate £91.0.0d/month).
6.3.1942: Sold to J. Marr & Son Ltd, Fleetwood for £8900 or £8625.
5.1946: Re-classed at Port Glasgow.
6.6.1946: Returned to owner.
29.10.1948: Aberdeen registry closed.
10.1948: Registered at Fleetwood (FD286). Geoffrey Edwards Marr, Cleveleys designated manager.
194?: In gale force conditions with poor visibility, stranded on rocks off Green Island, Sound of Mull. Attended by mail boat LOCHINVAR (216grt/1908) but crew remained on board and nine hours later refloated under own power.
1.7.1949: Sold to Anglo-Australian Fisheries (Pty) Ltd and Anglo-Australian Trawlers (Pty) Ltd, Perth, WA for £15000. Ian L. C. McNicol designated manager. 16.7.1949: Sailed Fleetwood for Fremantle, WA (Sk. James Dewhurst (39)/Capt E. Beeham); fourteen crew all volunteers to settle in Australia and sailed under Western Australian Government immigration scheme; families to follow.
16.9.1949: Arrived Fremantle, WA. To fish out of Albany.
1.1951: Had fire in coal bunker while alongside.
1958: Sold to Royal Australian Navy and sunk after use as a target.
(Thomas Alexander, OS, age 36, b. Roscommon, Co. Roscommon – ROYAL SOVEREIGN (SB279))

Click to enlarge images

HMT Ben Dearg

HMT Ben Dearg
Picture reproduced under IWM Non-Commercial Licence

S.T. Ben Dearg FD286 arrives in Australia

S.T. Ben Dearg FD286 arrives in Australia
Picture courtesy of The David Slinger Collection

29/04/2015: Updated information.
20/04/2017: Removed FMHT watermark from images.
01/03/2020: Updated information.