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HMAS Vampire (Post) Print - Framed


HMAS VAMPIRE (D 11) was the third of three Australian-built Daring-class destroyers serving in the Royal Australian Navy. VAMPIRE spent most of her career on exercises and tours through South East Asia. Her wartime duties were to escort the aircraft carrier/troop carrier HMAS SYDNEY to Vietnam on 5 occasions between 1965 and 1972. Her first on 27 May – 05 Jul 1965, 22 Apr - 18 May 1966, 08 Apr – 12 May 1967, 05 May – 31 May 1969 and her final deployment to Vietnam on 01 Nov – 18 Dec 1972. She also conducted active patrols off Malaya and Borneo during the Indonesian Confrontation of 1966.

After paying off on 29 June 1970, VAMPIRE underwent an extended refit including new gun turrets and fire control systems, new aircraft warning and navigation radar, plus replacement of a major portion of her superstructure.

VAMPIRE recommissioned on 17 November 1971 and arrived back in Sydney in March 1972. In March 1977 VAMPIRE undertook Royal Escort duty to the Royal Yacht BRITANNIA during the visit of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II. A visit to Adelaide in June was followed by a docking in Sydney, before a visit to Singapore in November 1977 to participate in a combined United States Navy, Royal Australian Navy and Royal Navy exercise, COMPASS 77.

In April 1986 a decision was made to decommission VAMPIRE and after a final cruise to Cairns, Townsville, Suva, Apia and Auckland, VAMPIRE made a ceremonial entry in to Sydney on 24 June 1986. VAMPIRE, as the last of the Australian Daring Class Destroyers, paid off on 13 August 1986 after a 27 year career during which she steamed 808,026 nautical miles. On decommissioning VAMPIRE was gifted to the Australian National Maritime Museum where she is currently on display to the general public.

Launched: 27 October 1956
Type: Daring Class Destroyer
Commissioned: 23 June 1959
Decommissioned: 13 August 1986
Displacement: 2,800 tons (standard), 2,600 tons (full load)
Length: 390 feet
Beam: 43 feet
Armament: 6 x 4.5-inch guns (twin turrets), 6 (later 2) x 40mm Bofors anti-aircraft guns, 5 x 21-inch torpedo tubes, pentad mount (later removed), Limbo triple barrelled anti-submarine mortar
Main Machinery: English Electric geared turbines, twin screws
Speed: 34 ¾ knots (designed)
Ship's Company: 320