Military History Books
by Harold A. Skaarup   www.SilverHawkAuthor.com   
 
Royal Canadian Navy (RCN) 1942–1968, Frigates (Prestonian Class)

Royal Canadian Navy (RCN) 1942–1968,

Frigates (Prestonian Class) 

Data currrent to 17 June 2019.

Frigates

Frigates were initially called "twin-screw corvettes" and were larger and more habitable than the standard corvettes.  They had twice the endurance rate, at 7,200 sea miles at 12 knots.  The RCN frigates were named for rivers, hence the name "River class".  60 frigates were built in Canada for the RCN in 1942/1943, and another ten were built for the United Kingdom on a lend-lease agreement with the USA.  In 1944 seven RN frigates were transferred to the RCN, along with three of the Loch class (a slightly larger model designed to be built from prefabricated parts).  Most of the RCN frigates were armed with twin 4-inch guns.

Prestonian Class Frigates

Some were retained after the Second World War, and between 1953 and 1958, 21 of the River class frigates were converted to flush-deck models and the quarterdeck was enclosed to house two Squid anti-submarine mortars.  The bridge was greatly enlarged and the funnel was heightened.  These modified warships were known as Prestonian class ocean escorts.  Most had been paid off by 1968.  HMCS Victoriaville was renamed HMCS Grandby in 1968 and became a diving tender.

Prestonian Class Frigates (Converted River Class Frigates)

HMCS Antigonish (301) (Prestonian-class); HMCS Beacon Hill (303) (Prestonian-class); HMCS Buckingham (314) (Prestonian-class); HMCS Cap de la Madeleine (317) (Prestonian-class); HMCS Fort Erie (312) (Prestonian-class); HMCS Inch Arran (308) (Prestonian-class); HMCS Jonquiere (318) (Prestonian-class); HMCS La Hulloise (305) (Prestonian-class); HMCS Lanark (321) (Prestonian-class); HMCS Lauzon (322) (Prestonian-class); HMCS New Glasgow (315) (Prestonian-class); HMCS New Waterford (304) (Prestonian-class); HMCS Outremont (310) (Prestonian-class); HMCS Penetang (316) (Prestonian-class); HMCS Prestonian (307) (Prestonian-class); HMCS Ste. Thérèse (309) (Prestonian-class); HMCS Stettler (311) (Prestonian-class); HMCS Sussexvale (313) (Prestonian-class); HMCS Swansea (306) (Prestonian-class); HMCS Toronto (319) (Prestonian-class); HMCS Victoriaville (320) (Prestonian-class).

HMCS Antigonish (301) 

 (Judy Saunders Photo)

HMCS Antigonish (301) (Prestonian Class).  Commissioned at Victoria as (K661) on 4 Jul 1944, she arrived at Halifax on 22 Aug 1944, and, after undergoing minor repairs, sailed for Bermuda in mid-Oct 1944 to work up.  On her return to Halifax on 2 Nov 1944, she joined EG 16, transferring with the group to Londonderry in Mar, 1945.  During the next three months HMCS Antigonish was employed on patrol and support duty, including two round trips to Gibraltar.  She left Londonderry in mid-Jun 1945 and on 3 Jul 1945 began tropicalization refit at Pictou, completing 17 Nov 1945.  On 22 Dec 1945 she left for Esquimalt and there, on 5 Feb 1946, was paid off into reserve.  She re-commissioned for training on 26 Apr 1947, and was paid off on 15 Jan 1954.  The ship was converted in 1956-57, to a Prestonian class ocean escort, and again took up her training role until finally paid off on 30 Nov 1966.  She was broken up in Japan in 1968.

 (City of Vancouver Archives Photo)

HMCS Antigonish (301) (Prestonian Class).

 (CFB Esquimalt Naval and Military Museum Photo)

HMCS Antigonish (301) (Prestonian Class).

 (Michael Forshaw Photo)

HMCS Antigonish (301) (Prestonian Class), Esquimalt, part of the 4th Escort Squadron, circa 1961-1962.

HMCS Beacon Hill (303)

(RCN Photo)

HMCS Beacon Hill (303) (Prestonian-class).  Built by Yarrows Ltd., Esquimalt, BC, she was commissioned there on 16 May 1944.  HMCS Beacon Hill (K407) arrived at Halifax on 11 Jul 1944, having escorted HMS Puncher from New Orleans to New York en route, and proceeded to Bermuda to work up.  On her return to Halifax she left in Sep 1944 to join EG 26, an RCN support group based at Londonderry, but for varying periods was detached to Plymouth and Portsmouth.  She remained in UK waters for the balance of the European war, leaving Greenock for home on 28 May 1945.  Intended for Pacific service, she underwent tropicalization refit at Liverpool, NS, from Jun to Nov 1945, and sailed from Shelburne for Esquimalt on 22 Dec 1945.  She was paid off at Esquimalt on 06 Feb 1946, but re-commissioned in the summer of 1949 for cadet training.  She was again paid off in 1954 for conversion to a Prestonian class ocean escort (303), was commissioned as such on 21 Dec 1957, and served on the west coast until finally paid off on 15 Sep 1967.  She was broken up in 1968 at Sakai, Japan.

 (DND Photo)

HMCS Beacon Hill (303) (Prestonian-class).

HMCS Buckingham (314) 

 (DND Photo)

HMCS Buckingham (314), Lunenburg, ca 1963.

Laid down as HMCS Royalmount, she was renamed HMCS Buckingham K685 on 5 Apr 1944.  Commissioned on 2 Nov 1944, at Quebec City, she proceeded to the east coast and sailed from Halifax on 18 Dec 1944 for Bermuda to work up.  She returned in mid-Jan 1945, and in Feb 1945 was assigned to EG 28, as a member of which she carried out escort and patrol duty out of Halifax until VE-Day.  In May she arrived at Shelburne, escorting the surrendered U-889.  In Jun 1945 she began a tropicalization refit at Liverpool, NS, continuing it at Shelburne until 20 Aug 1945, when it was suspended.  HMCS Buckingham was paid off on 16 Nov 1945 at Sydney and placed in reserve at Shelburne until 1946, when she was sold to Marine Industries Ltd.  Re-acquired by the RCN, she was converted to a Prestonian class ocean escort (304), 1953-54, and re-commissioned for training purposes.  Further modified by the addition of a helicopter landing deck aft, she carried out, Oct-Dec 1956, trials preliminary to the design of the destroyer helicopter carriers.  On 13 Feb 1959, HMCS Fort Erie, HMCS Buckingham, HMCS Swansea and HMCS La Hulloise returned to Halifax after a 5 week exercise in southern waters that included a port visit to Kingston, Jamaica.  In Apr 1963, 12 RCN ships, HMCS Algonquin, Micmac, Cayuga, St. Croix, Terra Nova, Kootenay, Swansea, La Hulloise, Buckingham, Cape Scott, CNAV Bluethroat and CNAV St. Charles, took part in NATO Exercise New Broom Eleven, an exercise designed to test convoy protection tactics.  She was paid off for the last time on 23 Mar 1965.  On 22 Mar 1966, Buckingham left Halifax under tow and arrived at Le Spezia on 11 Apr 1966 for scrapping.  One of her 4-inch/45 QF Mk. XVI* Twin Gun turrets is preserved in the village of Buckingham, Quebec.

 (DND Photo)

HMCS Buckingham (314), with Sikorsky HO4S-3 Sea Horse helicopter on the rear deck.

 (Author Photo)

HMCS Buckingham (314) (Prestonian-class).  4-inch/45 QF Mk. XVI* Twin Guns  (Serial No. S/14556), L, left, and (Serial No. S/covered with paint), R, right, on a Mk. XIX High Angle mounting, from HMCS Buckingham.  Buckingham, Quebec.

HMCS Buckingham (K685) was a river-class frigate, recommissioned in the 1950s and modernized as a Prestonian-class escort, and was further modified as a platform to test the helicopter carrying concept.  This dual 4-inch gun would have been the bow gun (technically in a "B" gun position) and came to the community after the vessel was decommissioned and sold for scrap to an Italian firm in 1965.

HMCS Cap de la Madeleine (K663)

 (DND Photo)

HMCS Cap de la Madeleine (317) (Prestonian-class).  HMCS Cap de la Madeleine (K663), was built at Quebec city, she was commissioned there on 30 Sep 1944.  She arrived at Halifax 20 Oct 1944, and soon afterward sailed for Bermuda to work up.  Returning in Dec 1944, she was allocated to EG C-7, MOEF, based at St. John's.  She left that port 28 Dec 1944, to accompany convoy HX.328 eastward, but was detached on 03 Jan 1945 to the westbound convoy ONS.39, as she had to return for repairs.  These were carried out successively at St. John's, Halifax and Quebec, and completed on 07 May 1945.  She then began tropicalization refit at Lauzon, but this was cancelled in Aug 1945 owing to termination of hostilities, and the ship was paid off 25 Nov 1945 at Shelburne, NS.  She was sold to Marine Industries Ltd., but later re-acquired by the RCN and converted to a Prestonian class unit (317).  Re-commissioned on 7 Dec 1954, she served on the east coast until paid off on 15 May 1965.  She was broken up the following year at La Spezia, Italy.

HMCS Fort Erie (312)

 (Bruce Edwards Photo)

HMCS Fort Erie (312) (Prestonian-class).  HMCS Fort Erie (K670) (River-class).  Built by George T. Davie & Sons Lts., at Lauzon, Quebec, she was laid down as HMCS La Tuque, but warenamed HMCS Fort Erie in Mar 1944.  Commissioned at Quebec City on 27 Oct 1944, she did not arrive at Halifax until Dec 1944.  She worked up in Bermuda in mid-Jan 1945 and, on her return to Halifax, was assigned to EG 28, an RCN support group based on Halifax, for the duration of the European war.  Tropicalization refit, begun 2 Jun 1945, at Pictou, NS, was cancelled on 20 Aug 1945 and HMCS Fort Erie was paid off on 22 Nov 1945, to be laid up at Shelburne, NS.  She was sold in 1946 to Marine Industries Ltd., but re-acquired by the RCN and rebuilt in 1954 and 1955 as a Prestonian class ocean escort (312).  Re-commissioned 17 Apr1956, she was generally in service as a training ship.  On 13 Feb 1959, HMCS Fort Erie, HMCS Buckingham, HMCS Swansea and HMCS La Hulloise returned to Halifax after a 5 week exercise in southern waters that included a port visit to Kingston, Jamaica.  HMCS Fort Erie was paid off on 26 Mar 1965 at Halifax.  She was broken up at La Spezia, Italy, in 1966.

 (Robb Corrigan Photo)

HMCS Fort Erie (312) (Prestonian-class).

HMCS Inch Arran (308) 

 (David Cooke Photo)

HMCS Inch Arran (308) (Prestonian-class).  Built at Lauzon, Quebec, she was commissioned on 18 Nov 1944, at Quebec City.  HMCS Inch Arran K667 left for Halifax on 3 Dec 1944, visiting Dalhousie en route.  In Jan 1945 she proceeded to Bermuda to work up, and on her return to Halifax on 4 Feb 1945, she was assigned to EG 28.  She served for the rest of the war on A/S and supported duties out of Halifax, and on 13 May 1945 escorted the surrendered U-889 into Shelburne, NS.  Tropicalization refit, commenced on 6 Jun 1945 at Sydney, was suspended on 20 Aug 1945, and the ship was paid off on 28 Nov 1945.  Placed in reserve at Shelburne, she was sold in 1946 to Marine Industries Ltd., but re-acquired in 1951 by the RCN for conversion to a Prestonian class ocean escort (308) at Saint John, NB.  She was re-commissioned on 23 Aug 1954, serving on the east coast as a training ship until finally paid off on 23 June 1965.  She was then acquired by the Kingston Mariners' Association for conversion to a nautical museum and youth club, but was eventually scrapped in 1970.

 (Robert Cooke Photo)

HMCS Inch Arran (308) (Prestonian-class).

 (John Rochon Photo)

HMCS Inch Arran (308) (Prestonian-class).

 (John Rochon Photo)

HMCS Inch Arran (308) (Prestonian-class).

HMCS Jonquiere (318)

 (City of Vancouver Archives Photo)

HMCS Jonquiere (318)  (Prestonian-class).  Commissioned at Quebec City on 10 May 1944, she arrived at Halifax on 5 Jun 1944 and proceeded from there to Bermuda to work up.  Returning in Aug 1944, HMCS Jonquiere K318 was assigned to EG C-2 and after three Atlantic crossings was transferred to EG 26 at Londonderry.  She was also based from time to time at Portsmouth and Plymouth, remaining in UK waters on A/S patrol until 27 May 1945, when she sailed with ON.305, the last westbound convoy.  She was paid off 4 Dec 1945 at Shelburne, NS, and later taken to Lauzon for conversion to a Prestonian class ocean escort (318), re-commissioning 20 Sep 1954.  Paid off on 12 Sep 1966, she was purchased by Capital Iron and Metal, Victoria, BC, in 1967 to be broken up.  Shortly after purchased the price of scrap metal plummeted and she was not broken until up late 1971, early 1972.

 (City of Vancouver Archives Photo)

HMCS Jonquiere (318) (Prestonian-class).

 (DND Photo)

HMCS Jonquiere (318) (Prestonian-class).

HMCS La Hulloise (305)

 (DND Photo)

HMCS La Hulloise (305) (Prestonian-class).  Commissioned at Montreal on 20 May 1944, HMCS La Hulloise K668arrived at Halifax in Jun 1944.  She proceeded to Bermuda in Jul 1944 to work up, and on returning was assigned to EG 16 at Halifax.  In Oct 1944 she was re-assigned to EG 25, and transferred with it to Londonderry in Nov 1944.  She spent the remainder of the war in UK waters, based variously at 'Derry and Rosyth.  On 7 Mar 1945, with HMCS Strathadam and HMCS Thetford Mines, she took part in sinking U-1302 in St. George's Channel.  Late in May 1945 she sailed for Canada to undergo tropicalization refit at Saint John, NB.  Work was completed on 19 Oct 1945, but the Pacific war had ended and she was paid off at Halifax on 6 Dec 1945.  When she was re-commissioned for cadet and new entry training in 1949 her CO, LCdr Jette, was also SO Reserve Fleet East Coast.  On  23 Nov 1953 HMCS La Hulloise was paid off for conversion to a Prestonian class ocean escort (305). She was commissioned as such on 9 Oct 1957.  On 13 Feb 1959, HMCS Fort Erie, HMCS Buckingham, HMCS Swansea and HMCS La Hulloise returned to Halifax after a 5 week exercise in southern waters that included a port visit to Kingston, Jamaica.  In Apr 1963, 12 RCN ships, HMCS Algonquin, Micmac, Cayuga, St. Croix, Terra Nova, Kootenay, Swansea, La Hulloise, Buckingham, Cape Scott, CNAV Bluethroat and CNAV St. Charles, took part in NATO Exercise New Broom Eleven, an exercise designed to test convoy protection tactics.  La Hulloise was paid off on 16 Jul 1965 and broken up at La Spezia, Italy, in 1966.

 (Peter Gillingham Photo)

HMCS La Hulloise (305) (Prestonian-class), Autumn 1962, taken during the 9th Squadron's visit to Churchill, Manitoba.

HMCS Lanark (321)

HMCS Lanark (321) (Prestonian-class).  Commissioned on 6 Jul 1944, at Montreal, HMCS Lanark K669 arrived at Halifax on 28 Jul 1944.  She carried out workups in Bermuda in September and, returning to Halifax in Oct 1944, was assigned to the newly formed EG C-7, Londonderry.  She spent the balance of the European war on convoy duty, most of that time as Senior Officer's ship, and early in Jun 1945, sailed for home.  In mid-Jul 1945 she began tropicalization refit at Liverpool, NS, but that was called off on 31 Aug 1945 and the ship was paid off at Sydney on 24 Oct 1945.  She was then placed in reserve at Shelburne, but was sold to Marine Industries Ltd., in 1946.  Later repurchased by the RCN, she was converted to a Prestonian class ocean escort (321), 1954-55, and on 26 Apr 1956, commissioned for training purposed on the east coast.  She was paid off the last time on 16 Mar 1965, and broken up at La Spezia, Italy in 1966.

 (Gary Medford Photo)

HMCS Lanark (321) (Prestonian-class).

 (Lewis ThibaultLewis Thibault Photo)

HMCS Lanark (321) (Prestonian-class).

HMCS Lauzon (322) 

 (DND Photo)

HMCS Lauzon (322) (Prestonian-class).  Built by George T. Davie & Sons Ltd., she was commissioned on 30 Aug 1944, at Quebec City.  HMCS Lauzon K671 arrived at Halifax in mid-Oct 1944 and in Nov 1944 spent three weeks' working up in Bermuda.  She arrived at St. John's, Newfoundland, 30 Nov 1944 to join EG C-6, and was continuously employed as a mid-ocean escort until VE-Day.  She left Londonderry 13 Jun 1945 for the last time, and that summer was employed as a troop-carrier between St. John's and Quebec City.  Paid off on 7 Nov 1945, she was laid up in reserve at Shelburne, NS, until purchased in 1946 by Marine Industries Ltd.  The RCN re-acquired her in 1951 for conversion to a Prestonian class ocean escort (322).  She was re-commissioned on 12 Dec 1953, and assumed a training role on the east coast until finally paid off on 24 May 1963.  She was sold the following year to a Toronto buyer, presumably for scrap

HMCS New Glasgow (315)

 (DND Photo)

HMCS New Glasgow (315) (Prestonian-class).  Commissioned on 23 Dec 1943, Yarrows Ltd., at Esquimalt, HMCS New Glasgow K320 arrived at Halifax on 17 Feb 1944, and then proceeded to Bermuda to work up.  On her return late in Apr 1944 she joined EG C-1.  She left St. John's with her first convoy, HXS.291, on 15 May 1944, and for the next five months was steadily employed on convoy duty.  Late in Sep 1944 she was allocated to EG 26, then forming at Londonderry, and for the remainder oft he European war served in UK waters, based for short periods at Portsmouth and at Plymouth early in 1945.  On 21 Mar 1945, she rammed the fatally damaged U-1003 off Lough Foyle, and was herself laid up for repairs at Rosyth until 5 Jun 1945.  She then proceeded via Londonderry to Halifax and thence to Shelburne, NS, where she was paid off to reserve on 5 Nov 1945.  Rebuilt in the long interval as a Prestonian class ocean escort (315), she was re-commissioned on 30 Jan 1954, and served in a training capacity until 30 Jan 1967, when she was paid off at Esquimalt.  She was broken up in Japan that year.

 (CFB Esquimalt Naval and Military Museum Photo)

HMCS New Glasgow (315) (Prestonian-class).

HMCS New Waterford (304)

 (DND Photo)

HMCS New Waterford (304) (Prestonian-class).  Built at Esquimalt, she was commissioned on 21 Jan 1944, at Victoria, BC.  She arrived at Halifax on 9 Mar 1944 and in Bermuda on 22 Apr 1944 to work up.  Returning to Halifax, she was assigned to EG 6 as a replacement for the damaged HMCS Teme.  On 16 Oct 1944, while EG 6 was on A/S patrol south of the Faeroes, HMCS Annan engaged and sank U-1006.  HMCS New Waterford K321 remained with EG 6 until the end of the European war, detached for short periods to Portsmouth and Plymouth, and in Apr 1945, returned home for tropicalization refit at Liverpool, NS.  This was completed in Nov 1945, and HMCS New Waterford left in Jan 1946, for the west coast, where she was paid off to reserve at Esquimalt on 7 Mar 1946.  Briefly re-commissioned in 1953, she later underwent conversion to a Prestonian class ocean escort (304), commissioning as such on 31 Jan 1958.  In late 1959/early 1960, she left Esquimalt for a coast transfer to Halifax.  During this coast transfer, she had an unusual cargo, a totem pole carved by BC First Nations destined for England.  When she arrived in Halifax it was transferred to the gunnery school where it was stored till summer, then transferred to HMCS Kootenay for the voyage to England.  During the year 1962 HMCS New Waterford steamed 24,218.3 miles and spent a total of 114 days at sea.  It was a full year for one ship, a cruise to Africa, three months in refit at Sydney, Nova Scotia, five weeks of WUPs, anti-submarine exercises off the Nova Scotia coast and a two-week cruise to Bermuda and Boston.  With Christmas and the New Year festivities over, the New Waterford put to sea for a further week of exercises and on January 28 sailed from Halifax as part of the Seventh Escort Squadron, destination Bermuda and Exercise Maple Spring '63.  She was paid off for the last time on 22 Dec 1966, and broken up the following year at Savona, Italy.

 (Nigel Whiteley Photo)

HMCS New Waterford (304) (Prestonian-class).

 (Nigel Whiteley Photo)

HMCS New Waterford (304) (Prestonian-class).

HMCS Outremont (310)

 (Bud Rose Photo)

HMCS Outremont (310) (Prestonian-class).  Built at Quebec City, she was commissioned there on 27 Nov 1943.  HMCS Outremont K322 arrived at Halifax on 13 Dec 1943 and carried out working-up exercises in St. Margaret's Bay.  She left St. John's, Newfoundland, on 17 Feb 1944, to join EG 6, Londonderry, and served mainly on escort and patrol duties in UK waters. On 28 Apr 1944, HMCS Outremont, in company with HMCS Waskesiu K330, HMCS Grou K518 and HMCS Cape Breton K350 departed Kola Inlet with Convoy RA.59; arriving at Loch Ewe on 6 May 1944.  HMCS Outremont was present off Normandy on D-Day.  She left the UK on 30 Nov 1944 for tropicalization refit at Sydney, which kept her idle until 20 Aug 1945, only to be paid off on 5 Nov 1945 and sold to Marine Industries Ltd.  Later re-acquired by the RCN and converted to a Prestonian class ocean escort (310), she was re-commissioned 2 Sep 1955, and served in a training role until finally paid off 7 Jun 1965, and arrived at La Spezia on 11 Apr 1966 for breaking up.

HMCS Penetang (316) 

 (Gerry Curry Photo)

HMCS Penetang (316) (Prestonian-class).  Laid down as HMCS Rouyn K676, she was renamed prior to being commissioned on 19 Oct 1944, at Quebec City.  She left on 6 Nov 1944 for Halifax and in Dec 1944 proceeded to Bermuda to work up.  Returning northward in Jan 1945, HMCS Penetang K676 joined convoy HX.331 at New York as local escort.  She was allocated in February to EG C-9, and made the crossing to the group's Londonderry base as an escort to SC.168.  She spent the rest of the war as a mid-ocean escort, returning to Canada in Jun 1945, to be employed as a troop carrier between St. John's, Newfoundland, and Quebec City.  One of the few frigates not taken in hand for tropicalization, she was paid off on 10 Nov 1945 and laid up at Shelburne, NS.  She was sold in Dec 1945 to Marine Industries Ltd., but later re-acquired and converted to a Prestonian class ocean escort (316), and re-commissioned on 1 Jun 1954 . Again paid off on 2 Sep 1955, she was lent to the Norwegian navy on 10 Mar 1956 and re-named Draug.  Transferred outright three years later, she served until 1966 and was then broken up at Oslo, Norway.

HMCS Prestonian (307) 

 (DND Photo)

HMCS Prestonian (307) (Prestonian-class).  Named to commemorate Preston, Ontario, she was named HMCS Prestonian K662, as there was an RN ship, HMS Preston already in commission.  Commissioned 13 Sep 1944 at Quebec City, HMCS Prestonian arrived at Halifax the following month in need of repairs, and it was early Jan 1945, before she could go to Bermuda to work up.  On her return to Canada she was assigned to EG 28, based at Halifax, and employed locally until VE-Day.  She then underwent tropicalization at Halifax, completing 20 Aug 1945, and on 9 Nov 1945 was paid off and sold to Marine Industries Ltd.  Later re-acquired by the RCN, she was rebuilt to become the name-ship of the Prestonian ocean escort class (307).  She was re-commissioned on 22 Aug 1953, and finally paid off on 24 Apr 1956, having been lent to the Norwegian navy.  Re-named Troll, she was transferred outright in 1959, and in 1965 reclassified as a submarine depot ship and re-named Horten.  She was discarded in 1972 and broken up same year.

 (DND Photo)

HMCS Prestonian (307) (Prestonian-class).

HMCS Ste. Thérèse (309) 

 (City of Vancouver Archives Photo)

HMCS Ste. Thérèse (309) (Prestonian-class).  Built by Davie Shipbuilding & Repairing Co. Ltd., HMCS Ste. Thérèse (K366) was commissioned on 28 May 1944, at Lévis, Quebec.  She arrived at Halifax early in Jul 1944 and, after preliminary workups in St. Margaret's Bay, NS, proceeded to Bermuda to complete the process.  Returning n mid-Aug 1944, HMCS Ste. Therese left Halifax in late Oct 1944 to join convoy HX.317 for passage to Londonderry.  There she joined EG 25 and served with it in UK waters until Feb 1945, when she was re-assigned to EG 28, Halifax.  She served locally with EG 28 until the end of the war, and on 22 Nov 1945 was paid off at Sydney, NS, and placed in reserve at Shelburne, NS.  She re-commissioned on 22 Jan 1955, after conversion to a Prestonian class ocean escort (309), finally being paid off at Esquimalt on 30 Jan 1967.  She was broken up in Japan that year.

 (City of Vancouver Archives Photo)

HMCS Ste. Thérèse (309) (Prestonian-class)

HMCS Stettler (311)

 (DND Photo)

HMCS Stettler (311) (Prestonian-class).  Built by Canadian Vickers Ltd., Montreal, Quebec, HMCS Stettler K681, was commissioned on 7 May 1944, at Montreal.  She arrived at Halifax on 28 May 1944 then carried out workups in Bermuda in Jul 1944.  On her return to Halifax she was assigned to EG 16.  On 7 Mar  1945, she left for Londonderry, EG 16's new base, and was thereafter employed in UK waters except for two round trips to Gibraltar in May and Jun 1945.  She left 'Derry for home on 16 Jun 1945, the last Canadian warship to do so, and began tropicalization refit at Shelburne, NS.  Work was suspended in Aug 1945 and the ship was paid off 9 Nov 1945.  She was sold but later recovered and converted to a Prestonian class ocean escort (311), being re-commissioned on 27 Feb 1954.  In the Spring of 1966, HMCS Stettler participated in exercise Maple Spring along with HMCS Grilse and HMCS St. Croix, with port visits along the east coast of South America.  She subsequently moved to the west coast, and was finally paid off there on 31 Aug 1966.  She was purchased by Capital Iron and Metal, Victoria, BC, in 1967 to be broken up.  Shortly after purchase the price of scrap metal plummeted and she was not broken up late 1971, early 1972.

 (Cathy Robinson Photo)

HMCS Stettler (311) (Prestonian-class). 

  (Cathy Robinson Photo)

HMCS Stettler (311) (Prestonian-class). 

 (Cathy Robinson Photo)

HMCS Stettler (311) (Prestonian-class). 

HMCS Sussexvale (313)

(City of Vancouver Archives Photo)

HMCS Sussexvale (313) (Prestonian-class).  Launched on 12 Jul 1944, she was the last  frigate launched for the RCN.  HMCS Sussexvale (K683) was commissioned on 29 Nov 1944, at Quebec City, and arrived at Halifax on 16 Dec 1944.  She left on 8 Jan 1945, for a months' workups in Bermuda, on completion of which she was assigned to EG 26.  She arrived in Londonderry to join the group on 6 Mar 1945 and spent the remainder of the war in UK waters, based primarily at Portsmouth.  She returned home in May to begin tropicalization refit at Shelburne, NS, but this was called off and the ship was paid off at Sydney on 16 Nov 1945.  Placed in reserve at Shelburne, she was subsequently sold to Marine Industries Ltd., but re-acquired by the RCN and converted to a Prestonian class ocean escort (313).  Re-commissioned 18 Mar 1955, she served as a training ship until paid off on 30 Nov 1966.  Sold in Dec 1966 to Kennedy & Mitsui, Vancouver, BC.  She was scrapped in Japan in 1967.

(City of Vancouver Archives Photo)

HMCS Sussexvale (313) (Prestonian-class).

(Wayne Egeland Photo)

HMCS Sussexvale (313) (Prestonian-class).

 (Wayne Egeland Photo)

HMCS Sussexvale (313) (Prestonian-class).

 (Wayne Egeland Photo)

HMCS Sussexvale (313) (Prestonian-class).

HMCS Swansea (306) 

 (DND Photo)

HMCS Swansea (306) (Prestonian-class).  Built by Yarrows Ltd., Esquimalt, she was commissioned at Victoria on 4 Oct 1943, HMCS Swansea arrived at Halifax on 16 Nov 1943 and worked up off Pictou and in St. Margaret's Bay, NS.  Assigned to EG 9, Londonderry, she made her passage there with convoy SC.154, taking part in the sinking of U-845 on 10 Mar 1944.  On 14 Apr 1944 she repeated the process in company with HMS Pelican, the victim this time being U-448.  Eight days later, on 22 April 1944, this time with HMCS Matane, HMCS Swansea sank U-311 southwest of Iceland.  This kill was only awarded long after the war once the records of German and British intelligence became available.  She was present on D-Day, and for the next four months patrolled the Channel in support of the ships supplying the invasion forces.  While thus employed, she and HMCS Saint John sank U-247 off Land's End on 1 Sep 1944.  She left Londonderry on 5 Nov 1944 for a major refit at Liverpool, NS, from Dec 1944 to Jul 1945.  She received the first tropicalization of a frigate for Pacific service, and on VJ-Day HMCS Swansea was assessing the results in the Caribbean.  She was paid off 2 Nov 1945 to reserve in Bedford Basin, but was twice re-commissioned for training cadets and new entries between Apr 1948, and Nov 1953.  In early June, 1949, while the Maingay Commission was still hearing testimony, a group of junior hands on the HMCS Swansea, incensed at poor treatment by their commanding officer, locked themselves in their mess.  The response was a forceful entry by armed troops, a rapid court-martial of the senior hands, and their sentencing to 90 days' hard labour and dishonorable discharge from the navy.  In Jun 1953 HMCS Swansea was part of the Canadian Squadron that attended the Coronation of Queen Elizabeth II Fleet Review at Spithead.  HMCS Swansea was rebuilt from 1956 to 1957, as a Prestonian class ocean escort (306).  On 13 Feb 1959, HMCS Fort Erie, HMCS Buckingham, HMCS Swansea and HMCS La Hulloise returned to Halifax after a 5 week exercise in southern waters that included a port visit to Kingston, Jamaica.  In Apr 1963, 12 RCN ships, HMCS Algonquin, Micmac, Cayuga, St. Croix, Terra Nova, Kootenay, Swansea, La Hulloise, Buckingham, Cape Scott, CNAV Bluethroat and CNAV St. Charles, took part in NATO Exercise New Broom Eleven, an exercise designed to test convoy protection tactics.  She was paid off 14 Oct 1966 and broken up in 1967 at Savona, Italy.

 (DND Photo)

HMCS Swansea (306) (Prestonian-class).

 (DND Photo)

HMCS Swansea (306) (Prestonian-class).

HMCS Toronto (319) 

 (DND Photo)

HMCS Toronto (319) (Prestonian-class).    Laid down as HMCS Giffard (K538), she was renamed and commissioned on 6 May 1944, at Lévis as HMCS Toronto (K538).  She arrived at Halifax on 28 May 1944 leaving on 18 Jun 1944 for a month's working-up in Bermuda.  In Aug 1944, HMCS Toronto was allocated to EG 16, Halifax, but for the next few weeks operated principally from Sydney.  Following repairs in Nov 1944 she joined Halifax Force and was employed locally until May 1945, when she began five months' training duty at HMCS Cornwallis.  Paid off on 27 Nov 1945, she was placed in reserve at Shelburne, but was re-commissioned on 26 Mar 1953, after conversion to a Prestonian class ocean escort (319).  She was paid off for the last time on 14 Apr 1956, having been lent to the Norwegian Navy, which renamed her HNoMS Garm.  She was permanently transferred in 1959, and re-classed in 1965 as a torpedo boat depot ship - simultaneously renamed HNoMS Valkyrien, she served a further 13 years before being disposed of.

HMCS Victoriaville (320)

 (DND Photo)

HMCS Victoriaville (320) (Prestonian-class).  Commissioned on 11 Nov 1944, at Quebec City, she arrived at Halifax on 03 Dec 1944 and late that month proceeded to Bermuda to work up.  In Feb 1945, she was assigned to EG C-9, leaving Halifax on 27 Feb 1945 to join convoy SC.168 for her passage to Londonderry, where the group was based.  HMCS Victoriaville (K684) spent the balance of the war on North Atlantic convoy duty.  She left Barry, Wales, on 02 May 1945 to pick up convoy ON.300 on her way home to Canada, and on 12 May 1945 escorted the surrendered U-190 into Bay Bulls, Newfoundland.  She began tropicalization refit at Saint John, NB, on 24 May 1945, but work was stopped on 20 Aug 1945, and on 17 Nov 1945 the ship was paid off at Sydney and laid up at Shelburne.  Subsequently sold to Marine Industries Ltd., she was re-acquired by the RCN and re-commissioned on 25 Sep 1959, following conversion to a Prestonian class ocean escort (320).  On 21 Dec 1966, she assumed the name and duties of the retiring diving tender HMCS Granby (180), but was paid off 31 Dec 1973, and sold for scrap the following year.

 (DND Photo)

HMCS Victoriaville (320) (Prestonian-class). 

 (Dan Delong Photo)

HMCS Granby (180) at French Cable Wharf, Dartmouth, Nova Scotia, in the late 1960s early 1970s.