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Visitor attractions

HMS Medusa

HMS Medusa  is a harbour defence motor launch (HDML) built in 1943 and the last of this class in original seagoing condition. She is berthed at Southampton's berth 25 in Empress Dock and regularly visits South Coast ports in the summer months.

[9031] HMS Medusa

magnify HMS Medusa

Medusa was laid down as ML1387 and launched on 20 October 1943.  Under the command of Lt Maurice Liddiard she was involved in convoy escort during World War 2 before taking part in a practise assault carried out by the Americans at Slapton Sands in Devon. Medusa took part in D-Dday, arriving off Omaha beach the night before and staying on station throughout as navigational marker for approach channel 4.

Early in 1945 she went across to The Hague and from there to Ijmuiden where she accepted the surrender of the occupying German forces. She then navigated the North Sea Canal to Amsterdam, the first allied ship to do so.

After the war, Medusa was redesignated Fast Despatch Boat 76 before being allocated to London Division RNVR as HMS Thames. Subsequently she was renamed Seaward Defence Launch (SDML) 3516 and in 1953 became a survey vessel and was named HMS Medusa.

In 1968 she was sold by the Navy and has been maintained in her original configuration. She is now under the care of the Medusa Trust and is operated by volunteers from the Medusa Support Group. She is on the "core collection" of the National Historic Ships Committee, together with such ships as HMS VictoryBelfast and Warrior, making her a vessel of exceptional national historic importance. She is now the last operational example of this class of vessel in her original condition and the last surviving vessel that was at Omaha beach on D-Day.

More about HMS Medusa.

For more information, contact Alan Watson:-

E-mail:  alan@trinitystar.co.uk

Website: www.hmsmedusa.org.uk



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