Admiralty Number: 4222
Official Number: 143834
Yard Number: 5
As built: 360disp 125.6 x 23.5 x 12.8 feet
Gross Tonnage: 278
Net Tonnage: 121
Length: 125.0 ft
Breadth: 23.5 ft
Depth: 12.7 ft
Built: Fletcher, Son & Fearnall Ltd, Limehouse, London
Engine: 480ihp T.3-cyl by Fraser & Chalmers Ltd, Erith
1918: Launched by Fletcher, Son & Fearnall Ltd, Limehouse (Yd.No.5) (“Castle” class) for The Admiralty as JAMES LAY (Ad.No.4222).
4.11.1918: Completed (1-12pdr).
15.11.1919: Registered by The Admiralty at London (Part I) as JAMES LAY O.N.143834.
19.2.1920: Registered by The Admiralty at London (Part IV) (LO333).
1920: Sold to Sir William Beardmore, Bart, Glasgow (Charles Curzon, Milford Haven, manager).
1.1921: Sir William Beardmore, Bart was raised to the peerage in the New Year’s Honours List and became Lord Invernairn of Strathnairn (Charles Curzon, Milford Haven, manager).
24.9.1925: While fishing 50 miles W by S1/2 S from St. Ann’s Head and working round a dahn, struck by THOMAS HANKINS (LO372) on the port side, sustaining damage to after gallows and shell plates.
3.1930: After landing from a Rockall trip, coaled and iced, while laying outside Wyre Dock and prepared for sea, sprang a leak, towed to sandbank and beached. Repaired and returned to service.
1931: Transferred to Hull.
12.1.1932: In thick fog stranded on Filey High Brig. Kedge anchors laid out but attempt to refloat at 7.30 pm failed. Later a southerly gale sprang up and crew evacuated over bow and rocks to safety.
13.1.1932: Two crew and locals returned onboard. At 7.00 am. came afloat without assistance, initially men taken off by lifeboat but crew returned and anchored Filey Bay to check round before proceeding to Hull.
1935: Insured value £5,000.
9.4.1936: Lord Invernairn died. Ownership transferred to his Executors – Alexander B. MacDuff, & Alexander M. Mitchell, Glasgow and Lady Invernairn, Flichity, Inverness.
1938: Sold to Mills Steam Ship Co Ltd, London.
25.7.1939: Insured value £5,000.
9.1939: Requisitioned for war service as a minesweeper (P.No.FY.667) (Hire rate £83.8.0d/month).
19.5.1940: Sailed Harwich (Sk. W. H. Makings RNR) escorted by HM Destroyer JAGUAR (Lt Cdr. J. F. Hine RN)(P.No.F34) and HM Patrol Sloop PUFFIN (Lt Cdr. Earl Beatty RN)(P.No.L52) accompanied by HM M/S Trawlers, CAPE MELVILLE (Ty/Sk. J.E. C. Wright RNR)(P.No.FY651) (H150), GRAMPIAN (Ch. Sk. A. Robb RNR)(P.No.FY546) (H502), MILFORD QUEEN (Ty/Sk. F. Burgess RNR) (P.No.FY615) (M225), MILFORD PRINCESS (Ty/Sk. J. W. Cook RNR)(P.No.FY616) (M228) and PELTON (Sk. J. A. Sutherland DSC RNR)(H288), engaged in Operation Quixote (to creep and cut telephone cables between Lowestoft, Bacton, Mundesley and Borkum and Nordeney, Germany).
28.5.1940: Operation completed.
15.1.1942: Sold to J. Marr & Son Ltd, Fleetwood (Geoffrey Edwards Marr, manager) for £8625.
1944: Fitted out for dan laying and assigned to Operation Neptune – Normandy landings.
23.5.1944: Attached to the 15th Minesweeping Flotilla as a dan layer.
3.7.1944: Operation Neptune ended.
10.1944: Returned to owner.
3.1945: Reclassed at Hull.
30.11.1945: Insured value £18,500; for 1946 proposed same.
11.3.1946: Sold to Dinas Steam Trawling Co Ltd, Fleetwood for £19,000. Registered at Fleetwood (FD189).
23.4.1954: Last landing at Fleetwood. 338 boxes 40 baskets, £1382 gross.
5.1954: Sold to Haven Trawlers Ltd, Milford Haven (Robert Lewis, manager).
13.12.1959: Last landing at Milford. Laid up.
1960: Sold to BISCO and allocated to Thos W. Ward Ltd, Sheffield for breaking up.
16.3.1960: Delivered to Briton Ferry under own power from Milford Haven.
(James Lay, Landsman, age 24, b. Peckham, London – VICTORY (SB312))
Click to enlarge images
29/01/2009: Page published. 6 updates since then.
21/07/2015: Information updated.
25/08/2017: Removed disputed image and FMHT watermarks.
15/02/2021: Updated history and technical details.