Class: SAMSON Class Tug
Pennant No: A390
Builder: Alexander Hall & Co Ltd, Aberdeen
Launched: 14 May 1953
Into Service: May 1954
Out of service: 29 April 1977
Fate: broken up March 1981
Items of historic interest involving this ship: -
Background Data: There were 3 ships in this Class, only one of which saw service as an RFA They were all built and engined by the same Company and are generally referred to as SAMSON or GIANT Class. The full Class was as follows:
Pennant Nr Name Launched Completed Fate
A 390 SAMSON 14/05/53 05/54 RFA Service
A 288 SEA GIANT 2/06/54 Scrapped 1980
SUPERMAN 23/11/53 Scrapped 1979
14 May 1953 launched by Alexander Hall & Co Ltd, Aberdeen as Yard Nr 741 named SAMSON
Builders Plate - © Andy Crespin – used with permission
11 March 1954 entered dry dock at Portsmouth and undocked on 15 March 1954
31 May 1954 undertook trials at Portsmouth Dockyard.The Dockyard trials consisted of Bollard pulls at various r.p.m. and took place at Bull Nose Jetty between B & C Locks
1 June 1954 towing trials at Stokes Bay took place. There involved towing RFA Capable at various speeds.
15 January 1958 towed RFA Oakol off a shingles bank off the Isle of Wight where she had run aground
4 August 1960 with other tugs moved HMS Vanguard out of Portsmouth Harbour for final voyage, under tow, to the ship breakers. The move out of Portsmouth Harbour did not go smoothly with Vanguard running aground at the habour entrance. With the assistance of other tugs Vanguard was freed and towed out of the harbour
13 February 1965 attended the Irish cargo steamer City of Waterford on fire off St Catherine's Point, Isle of Wight on passage from Zeebrugge to Waterford and fought the fire before taking the steamer in tow to St. Helen's Roads
26 September 1969 to 29 September 1969 berthed alongside at Portsmouth Harbour with ETV Whimbrel outside of her
November 1974 reported to have been sold to the Chilean Navy but this did not materialise and she was laid up at Portsmouth.
29 April 1977 sold to H.G. Pounds Ltd, Portsmouth.
December 1977 sailed Portsmouth after sale to Cosimo Lo Nigro, Palermo
1978 renamed COSMO by her owners.
March 1981 broken up at Palermo
- Based at Portsmouth mainly deployed on harbour work with occasional sea towing and salvage work
- Had a Bollard Pull of 30 tons and a range of 5,000 miles at 12 knots