RFA Antic



Previous name:                      Ant
Subsequent name:  

Official Number:                     169288                                                                

Class:                                    ASSURANCE Class Tug

Pennant No:                          W141 / A141

Laid down:                            25 November 1942
Builder:                                 Cochrane & Sons, Selby
Launched:                             24 March 1943
Into Service:                          1956
Out of service:                       April 1969
Fate:                                       Sold to Hughes Bolckow for breaking up.


Items of historic interest involving this ship: -


Background Data:  There were originally 21 ships in this Class, 7 of which saw service as RFA’s. Of 700 t standard displacement and 1350 t full load displacement, they had a complement of 31 and a bollard pull of 13½ tons. In wartime they were armed with 1 x 3“ gun, 1 x 20mm AA gun and 2 x .303 machine guns


25 November 1942 laid down as HMS ANT

24 March 1943 launched by Cochrane  & Sons Ltd, Selby as Yard Nr 1264 named HMS ANTIC

28 June 1943 completed

1943 to 1948 loaned to the Netherlands Government - managed by L. Smit



HMS Antic while on loan to the Netherlands Government
© Hull Maritime Museum: Hull Museums


27 August 1943 arrived at Freetown from Gibraltar in convoy OS53

29 May 1944 took USS Barr (DE576) in tow after she had been torpedoed by German Submarine U549 and towed her to Casablanca.

13 June 1944 sailed Gibraltar in convoy XK17 to Liverpool arriving 26 June 1944 with tug Empire Harry towing HMS Palomares

July 1945 went to the assistance of a torpedoed British Landing Craft (location not clear at this time) in heavy seas, a mine was exploded by the Landing Craft. Antic's ship's boat was launched and went alongside  the landing craft, which by now was sinking. Twelve of the Landing Craft's crew were rescued - of which six were injured and placed on board the Antic. The rescued sailors were landed at Antwerp. Two of the landing craft's crew were lost despite a search by the Antic.  Third Engineer Officer Linse and Able Seaman Rijpsma were awarded a commendation for being outstanding for their gallantry and total disregard for their personal safety. They manned the motor boat in a rough sea and rescued the men from the sinking Landing Craft

23 February 1946 sailed Dover together with the tug Lady Brassey to the American tanker Fort Frederica, which, while on passage from Trinidad to Hull went aground on the Goodwin Sands. The tanker was refloated but steamed again towards the Goodwin Sands and after the Deal coastguard had signalled that she was standing into danger she dropped anchor. The tugs pulled her away from the Sands with the Walmer life boat standing by

Fort frederica

Fort Frederica
© Auke Visser acknowledged

6 March 1946 sailed Dover together with the tugs Lady Brassey and the Salvor to the British Steamer Lombardy and the Polish vessel Kielce which had collided in sleet and rain south of Folkstone. The Kielce had sunk and the Lombardy was badly damaged. The Lombady was towed to Deal Roads where she anchored very low in the water. There was no loss of life

15 April 1946 Captain A Slijp was the  Dutch Commanding Officer

10 June 1946 sailed Dover for Portmouth. The ship, although an Admiralty vessel, was manned by a Dutch crew and flew the Dutch flag

17 April 1947 with other tugs stood by RMS Queen Elizabeth after she had run aground on the Brambles Bank, Solent

12 December 1947 the Hampshire Telegraph reported -

9 12 1947 Antic Hants Telegraph

26 January 1948 RN manned as a tender to HMS Excellent.

1956 transfered to CD Portsmouth on RFA conditions

3 September 1956 sailed Portsmouth on deployment to the Mediterrean

18 October 1956 at Malta

Between October to December 1956 at Suez assisting British Forces

11 January 1957 sailed Malta to Algiers arriving on 14 January 1957

15 January 1957 sailed Algiers to Gibraltar arriving on 17 January 1957

19 January 1957 sailed Gibraltar to Porto da Leixos arriving on 21 January 1957

22 January 1957 sailed Porto da Leixos to Portsmouth arriving on 27 January 1957

1 July 1957 sailed Sheerness to Harwich with a dumb barge in tow. Returned to Sheerness the same day

1959 transfered to Portland then to Rosyth.

4 August 1960 was assisting in getting HMS Vanguard out of Portsmouth Dockyard to the breakers when HMS Vanguard ran aground.

April 1969 laid up at Rosyth

29 October 1969 advertised in the Times of this day for sale "as lying" at Rosyth Dockyard

Antic 29 10 1969 for sale


12 November 1969 Sold for scrap to Hughes Bolckow

14 November 1969 towed to Blyth for breaking up by the tug Ironsider

Additional information

Copyright © 2008 – 2018 Christopher J White

This website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website, by continuing to use the site you agree to cookies being used. More info.