Previous name: Chapman
Official Number: 149161
Class: Salvage Vessel
Pennant No: X30 / X19
Builder: New York Shipbuilding
Into Service: 1915
Out of service: March 1923
Fate: Broken up
Items of historic interest involving this ship: -
Background Data: In some old ledgers in the possession of the Admiralty and marked “ lists of RFA’s”, a number of vessels are shown as having spent some time as RFA’s during WW1. Some of these vessels were Yard Craft, partially or wholly Dockyard-manned, partly by RNR or Reserve Fleet personnel. The Director of Stores Dept was concerned with their manning and operation for a while
1915 Launched by New York Shipbuilding Corp, Camden, New York as Yard Nr ? named CHAPMAN for the Dover Harbour Board, Dover
November 1915 completed
1915 Requisitioned by the Admiralty and renamed DAPPER. Was subsequently purchased by them for use as a Salvage Vessel
22 November 1915 Lieutenant Philip N Edmonds RNR appointed in command
5 October 1916 Diver William Henry Foreman, aged 46, discharged dead at Edinburgh, Scotland from disease. He was buried in Dover (Buckland) Cemetery, Dover, Kent in grave D 2196
Courtesy and © of The War Graves Photographic Project
March 1917 and other dates over a number of years assisted RFA Racer to recover gold in the HMS Laurentic which had been mined and sunk while off Lough Swilly, County Donegal, Ireland
30 April 1918 Able Seaman William Stanley Sheriff, aged 19, discharged dead. He was buried in Lower Fahan (Christ Church) Churchyard, Buncrana, County Donegal, Republic of Ireland in a grave in the south east part of the cemetery
Courtesy and © of The War Graves Photographic Project
9 May 1918 Engineer Lieutenant Frederick C Reynolds RNR appointed as Chief Engineer Officer
12 August 1918 Engineer Lieutenant Andrew Powrie RNR appointed as Chief Engineer Officer
8 May 1919 Engineer Lieutenant Thomas C Furness RNR appointed as Chief Engineer Officer
Engineer Lieutenant Thomas C Furness RNR
9 September 1919 involved in the salvage of the schooner Markussund.
28 January 1921 applications for salvage money published in the London Gazette of 28 January 1921 on page 780
22 November 1921 sailed Queenstown to Devonport prior to being laid up
28 November 1921 arrived at Devonport from Queenstown escorted by RFA BELGOL
March 1923 Sold to the Dover Harbour Board
18 July 1924 at Dover Police Court Cook John Leady appeared charged with the stealing a gold ring from a cabin onboard. He pleaded Not Guily but was convicted and fined 10/-
Press report from Dover Express dated 18 July 1924
1926 involved in the attempts to salavge HMS GLATTON which had exploded and later sank in Dover Harbour on 16 September 1918. The Glatton was moved where she had sunk and which caused obstruction to ship movements in the Harbour to a deeper part of the harbour. This was then filled in and the car terminal (as it is now) was built over the ship
27 April 1927 at Dover commenced salvage work on raising the two block ship - ss Livonian and ss Spanish Prince - sunk in the western entrance of the harbour during World War 1
21 September 1928 at Dover involved in replacing of the gates to Wellington Dock which had been removed on 18 June 1928 for repairs
11 January 1929 at Dover raised the barge "Eileen" which had broken adrift during gales and sunk
20 February 1929 off the port of Dover together with the tugs Lady Brassey and Lady Duncannon salvaged the Belgian steamer Ville de Leige. The Belgian ship was towed into Dover Harbour for repairs
12 November 1929 off Peacehaven near Beachy Head together with the tugs Lady Brassey and Lady Duncannon salvaged the Italian steamship Nimbo (3,870 tons) which had gone aground. Having been refloated the Italian ship was towed to Southampton for repairs
20 December 1929 sailed from Dover to the Downs taking coal to the Spanish steamer Mari which had run out of bunkers to allow her to reach Dover. On reaching Dover the Mari loaded 130 tons of bunker coal
4 April 1930 sailed Dover in company of the Dover Harbour Board tug Lady Duncan
11 April 1930 at the Elbow Buoy, off Ramsgate attended the German tanker Nord Atlantic which had been damaged amidships in a collision with the Tilbury to Dunkirk steamer Picardy
15 April 1930 proceedings in the Admiralty Division of the High Court by the Dover Harbour Board following the salvaging of the Italian steamship Nimbo (see above) resulted in judgement by default being granted to the Dover Harbour Board
5 January 1931 sailed Dover to the ss Nurtureton aground on her maiden voyage 1 mile east of Dungeness. With 55 men from Dover to jettison her cargo of coal attempts were made to refloat the vessel
16 April 1940 Panamanian steamer ALBA (3444grt) ran aground on the Goodwins, 3½ miles 55° from Deal Coast Guard Station. Tug LADY BRASSEY and salvage vessel DAPPER sailed from Dover to assist. After jettisoning cargo and the efforts of seven tugs, she was finally refloated at 1830/17th, brought to the Downs and anchored.
20 March 1940 Steamer BARN HILL (5439grt), formerly of convoy HX.25A, was badly damaged by German bombers of KG26, three miles SSW of Beachy Head, in 50-34N, 0-02W. Five crew were lost, and the steamer was towed towards shore and beached three hundred yards southeast of Langney Point on the 21st. Salvage vessel DAPPER sailed to the scene at daylight on the 25th and remained there until the fire was extinguished. The steamer's back broke on the 26th and she was declared a total loss.
25 September 1940 requisitioned by the Admiralty
28 October 1940 Able Seaman Ivor Leon Rogers awarded a Commendation - details were published in the London Gazette of this date
20 January 1942 Chief Engineer Daniel J Thomas RFA appointed a Member of the Order of the British Empire (Civil Division) - MBE and Leading Salvage Hand William Webb awarded the British Empire Medal (Civil Division) - BEM for fire fighting in a bombed ship - details were published in the London Gazette of this date. Chief Engineer Daniel J Thomas was also awarder the Lloyds Bravery Medal
9 February 1942 H M Fort 'Roughs Tower' left Tilbury, Dapper towing ahead, Lady Brassey stern tug and Crested Cock and King Lear (Gamecock's salvage vessel) lashed alongside.
What remains of H M Fort 'Roughs Tower'
11 February 1942 1645 the fort was in position 51.33.66N 1.28.93E, 7 miles SE of Lowestoft. [This first tow, taking three days, was apparently fraught with problems, including hitting a light vessel moored off Gravesend, colliding with three buoys, R1, Mucking 1 and Mucking 2 and weather problems.
20 April 1942 assisted HMS COTSWOLD which had been mined in the North Sea to Shotley Spit off Parkstone where she was beached
4 May 1942 HMS COTSWOLD towed by Dapper to Chatham
5 October 1942 berthed at Great Yarmouth with HMS SHEARWATER - source Admiralty War Diary
5 July 1943 sailed to Yarmouth Roads to assist the American Freighter Oremar which had fouled No 59 buoy and was in tow by HM Tug St Mellons to Great Yarmouth - source Admiralty War Diary
25 December 1943 sailed Great Yarmouth together with HMS WORCESTER which was being towed by the tugs Champion and Krooman all escorted by HMS WIDGEON - source Admiralty War Diary
2 October 1943 at Dover Cook/Steward Reginald Howard discharged dead - apparent suicide. He is buried in Charlton Cemetery, Dover
13 July 1944 ordered by signal from C in C Portsmouth to sail as soon as possible to HMS LST 359 which had been mined in area 16 east of Calshot and was in danager of sinking
20 October 1944 Fireman Charles Edward Lewry discharged dead - heart failure. He is buried in St Mary's Cemetery, Dover
11 April 1945 towing to the Downs the ss Lady Brassey under the escort of HMS GREY GOOSE - souce Admiralty War Diary reporting a signal from Dapper to the Admiral commanding Dover
7 December 1945 at the South Goodwins attended the US steamship USO and the French vessel Andre Thome both of which had grounded on the sand banks. The USO was refloated. The Andre Thome having been refloated grounded herself again
29 June 1946 returned to owners
January 1951 broken up at Dover
1 May 1951 Certificate cancelled and Registry entry closed - ship broken up
Was managed by Risdon Beazeley Ltd, Southampton during WW2
Ships of the same name
Dapper. A gun-brig of 12 guns, 185 bm, 85 x 22.5 feet. Launched by Adams, Chapel in December 1805. Sold on the 29 September 1814.
Dapper. A wood screw gunboat of the “Dapper” class launched by Green of Blackwall on the 31 March 1855, reduced to a training hulk in 1885, then a cooking depot in 1897 and given the pennant number YC 37 in 1909. Sold to a Mr Perry on the 10 May 1922.
Battle Honours for this Vessel: BALTIC 1855.