RFA Wave Monarch Unofficial Crest

RFA Wave Monarch
RFA Wave Monarch in wartime colours with guns
RFA Wave Monarch

RFA Wave Monarch post war 


Previous name:                   Empire Venus
Subsequent name:              Noema

Official Number:                  169962          

Class:                                   WAVE CLASS Oiler (modified)

Pennant No:                         X108 / B 526 / A108

Laid down:                           17 June 1943
Builder:                                 Harland & Wolff Ltd., (Govan)       
Launched:                            6 July 1944
Into Service:                         3 November 1944
Out of service:                      March 1960 sold out of service
Fate:                                     Broken up


Items of historic interest involving this ship: -


Background Data:  A need for fast tankers to bring oil into the country had been envisaged early in the Second World War, but by the time the material had been collected and the Yards had space to build them, the need had largely passed and the original design of diesel-engined ships was abandoned. Instead, the standard 12000t Class being built were given sharper bows and sterns and turbine engines with water tube boilers. In all, 21 of this type were built and were offered to the Admiralty, who wanted faster tankers for the Pacific Fleet Train. The Admiralty took twenty of them ( the final vessel being completed commercially for Oil and Molasses Tankers Ltd, London as BEECHWOOD) and renamed them with the WAVE nomenclature. Performance varied considerably from ship to ship and they underwent various modifications in their rigs for RAS work. The eight best ones were finally given an extensive refit, with extra accommodation added to the Bridge Deck and extra turbo cargo pumps and derricks to make them more satisfactory for Fleet work. Initially expensive to run, they recouped some of their expensive repair bills by earning revenues from charter work after the Korean War. From this Class was evolved the TIDE CLASS oilers.


17 June 1943 laid down as EMPIRE VENUS for the MoWT

28 January 1944 taken over by the Admiralty while still being built - name cancelled

3 July 1944 Mr William J Brown DSC RFA appointed as Chief Engineer Officer

6 July 1944 launched by Harland & Wolff Ltd, Govan as Yard Nr: 1223 G named WAVE MONARCH

3 November 1944 completed

14 November 1944 sailed in Convoy UC 45A from Liverpool to New York arriving on the 25 November 1944

9 December 1944 sailed in convoy CU50 from New York to the Clyde arriving on 20 December 1944 along with EMPIRE PALADIN (later RFA WAVE COMMANDER)

28 January 1945 sailed in Convoy UC 54A from Clyde to Curacao via New York arriving on 10 February 1945 EMPIRE BOUNTY (later RFA WAVE VICTOR) was also in this Convoy

2 February 1945 detached from Convoy UC 54A

13 February 1945 sailed independently from Curacao to Cristobal arriving 15 February 1945

17 February 1945 sailed independently arriving Manus 13 March 1945

March 1945 took part in Operation Iceberg One - the British Pacific Fleet operations against Okinawa and outlying islands - along with RFA’s ARNDALE, BACCHUS (2), BROWN RANGER, CEDARDALE, DINGLEDALE and WAVE KING.

13 March 1945 reported by the US Commander, Loyalty Islands as arriving at that location

19 March 1945 sailed Manus, Admiralty Islands independently with RFA DINGLEDALE arriving Leyte 26 March 1945

27 March 1945 at Leyte with HMAS PIRIE alongside being refuelled

31 March 1945 at San Pedro Bay with HMAS KALGOORLIE alongside being refuelled

HMAS Kalgoorlie


4 April 1945 during Operation Iceberg at 19°12N 126°30E RASed HMS BLACK PRINCE

13 April 1945 sailed Tolosa, Leyte Island, Philippnes with HMS WOODCOCK as escort to Ryukyus

18 April 1945 HMAS NAPIER refuelled alongside

3 May 1945 HMAS's NAPIER, NEPAL, NIZAM and NORMAN, (destroyers), screened the escort carriers STRIKER and RULER, and RFA's WAVE KING and WAVE MONARCH, in the Okinawa area.

6 May 1945 to 7 May 1945 elements of the British Pacific Fleet met up with the Tanker Group at Cootie One - 21º12 N 128º44 E - for refuelling and mail transfers. This included RFA’s CEDARDALE, WAVE KING and WAVE MONARCH plus 2 other MFA oilers.

7 May 1945 with RFA WAVE KING deployed to Leyte under the escort of HMAS NORMAN

14 May 1945 refuelled HMAS NEPAL and supplied 244 tons of FFO

15 May 1945 with Fleet Train in Area COOTIE RASing BPF ships with RN Frigates HMS WOODCOCK, HMS PHEASANT, Destroyers HMAS NIZAM, Escort Carriers HMS RULER and HMS STRIKER for defence of Fleet Train tankers RFA DINGLEDALE RFA ARNDALE,  RFA WAVE KING and RFA WAVE MONARCH (Operation ICEBERG TWO)

22 May 1945 at Cortie One RFA’s WAVE KING and WAVE MONARCH again met up with HM and HMA ships for fuelling tasks


2 June 1945 sailed Manus, Admiralty Islands independently arriving Brisbane, Australia 7 June 1945

22 June 1945 sailed Brisbane independently arriving Manus, Admiralty Islands on 28 June 1945

30 June 1945 at Manus, Admiralty Islands together with RFA's BACCHUS (2), FORT DUNVEGAN, RAPIDOL, BROWN RANGER and GREEN RANGER

1 July 1945 sailed Manus, Admiralty Islands

July 1945 member of Task Force 112 in the Pacfic

20 July 1945 RAS'ed HMS IMPLACABLE with AVGAS astern between 0712 and 1818 hours. At the same time RAS'ed unspecified destroyers abeam

Implacable 1947


31 July 1945 at 0900 hours TF 37 RV'ed with Task Unit 112 which consisted of oilers HMS OLNA (later to become RFA OLNA (2)), RFA's WAVE GOVERNOR and WAVE KING and the MV CARELIA, stores supply ships MV GLENARTNEY and MV CORINDA, ammunition issuing ship MV ROBERT MAERSK, escort carriers HMS's CHASER, RULER and SPEAKER, the corvette converted to a radar and radio maintenance ship HMNZS ARBUTUS, escorted by destroyers NORMAN and NEPAL, sloops CRANE, PHEASANT, WOODCOCK and REDPOLE, frigates ODZANI and DERG and minesweeper HMAS PIRIE, in replenishment area, BRITISH TIZZY. At 1000 hours replenishment commenced. The weather in the area was less than ideal, with a heavy swell running caused by a succession of typhoons to the east of the area. However, because the British were now mastering replenishment at sea (RAS) the weather did not affect the operation as much as it would have done just a few weeks ago.HMS KING GEORGE V again refuelled by the abeam method and was able to take on fuel at 840 tons per hour. (KGV maximum fuel capacity 4100 tons, average capacity 3886 tons)


6 August 1945 sailed independently from Manus, Admiralty Islands arriving Sydney, NSW on 11 August 1945

28 September 1945 sailed independently from Sydney, NSW arriving at Manus, Admiralty Islands on 5 October 1945

16 October 1945 sailed independently from Manus, Admiralty Islands arriving Hong Kong 23 October 1945

7 December 1945 Captain Frederick G Drake DSC RFA appointed as Master

8 January 1946 sailed Hong Kong to Singapore arriving 13 January 1946

15 January 1946 sailed Singapore to Bombay arriving 24 January 1946

24 January 1946 Captain Thomas Elder DSC RFA appointed as Master

25 January 1946 under going repairs at Bombay

7 February 1946 sailed Bombay to Abadan arriving on 11 February 1946

14 February 1946 sailed Abadan to Hong Kong arriving on 8 March 1946

9 March 1946 sailed Hong Kong to Shanghai arriving on 12 March 1946

15 March 1946 sailed Shanghai to Hong Kong

3 April 1946 in port at Hong Kong

21 June 1946 at Singapore from Hong Kong sailed to Abadan arriving 4 July 1946

3 July 1946 Mr William J Brown DSC RFA appointed as Chief Engineer Officer

9 July 1946 sailed Abadan to Port Said then sailed 21 July 1946 passing Gibraltar on 27 July 1946, passing Beachy Head and the Downs on 31 July 1946 arriving at Sheerness on 1 August 1946

10 August 1946 arrived at Devonport from Sheerness

27 October 1946 sailed Devonport passing Gibraltar 30 October 1946 arriving at Port Said 4 November 1946

5 November 1946 sailed Port Said to Aden arriving 10 November 1946

10 November 1946 sailed Aden for Abadan but put back due to engine defects on 11 November 1946

13 November 1946 after repairs sailed again for Abadan arriving on 19 November 1946

20 November 1946 sailed Abadan for Hong Kong

7 December 1946 sailed Singapore

12 December 1946 arrived Hong Kong

2 January 1947 sailed Hong Kong for Colombo

10 January 1947 arrived at Colombo

11 January 1947 sailed Colombo for Abadan

25 January 1947 passed Aden

30 January 1947 sailed Port Said for Gibraltar

5 February 1947 arrived at Gibraltar

21 Feberuary 1947 sailed Gibraltar for Abadan

3 March 1947 sailed Aden for Abadan

9 March 1947 sailed Abadan for Aden

15 March 1947 arrived at Aden

17 March 1947 sailed Aden for Abadan

30 March 1947 arrived Aden

1 April 1947 sailed Aden for Abadan

18 April 1947 sailed Port Said

27 April 1947 sailed Gibraltar

2 May 1947 arrived Port Said and sailed the same day

3 June 1947 arrived at Abadan from Port Said

7 June 1947 at the AIOC Hospital, Abadan Donkeyman Shaikh Adam X Shaikh Ennos discharged dead from a stroke. He entered the hospital on 5 June 1947

12 June 1947 passed Aden

17 June 1947 sailed Port Said

28 June 1947 arrived at Rosyth

3 July 1947 Mr Frederick O Brims RFA appointed as Chief Engineer Officer until 15 January 1948



Chief Engineer Officer Frederick O Brims RFA - image taken earlier in his sea going career

14 July 1947 arrived the River Tyne from Rosyth

22 July 1947 berthed at the Admiralty Tier, River Tyne together with RFA WAVE GOVERNOR

30 July 1947 Captain George S Perry RFA appointed as Master

 G S Perry

Captain George S Perry RFA

7 August 1947 arrived Gibraltar

19 August 1947 arrived Port Said

30 August 1947 arrived at Abadan

7 September 1947 sailed Abadan

16 September 1947 sailed Chochin for Trincomalee

22 September 1947 arrived Trincomalee

24 September 1947 sailed Trincomalee for Bombay

30 September 1947 at Bombay

21 October 1947 while on passage from Abadan to Devonport left Port Said this day

27 October 1947 while on passage from Abadan to Devonport passed Gibraltar this day

2 November 1947 arrived at Plymouth

 Wave Monarch press cutting

Press cutting from the Western Morning News of 4 November 1947


11 November 1947 arrived at the River Clyde Anchorage after passage from Devonport

1 December 1947 Mr Wallace G Downing RFA appointed as Chief Engineer Officer

16 January 1948 sailed the River Clyde for Curacao

24 March 1948 at Hull

16 August 1948 berthed at Portsmouth Harbour

11 January 1949 Captain Archibald Hobson DSC RFA appointed as Master


 Capt Archibald Hobson Photo

Captain Archibald Hobson DSC RFA

19 June 1949 Mr George G Stenhouse RFA appointed as Chief Engineer Officer


Chief Engineer Officer George G Stenhouse RFA

31 August 1949 arrived at Portsmouth Harbour berthing on the Gosport Oil Fuel jetty

3 September 1949 sailed from Portsmouth Harbour

11 October 1949 sailed Trincomalee, Ceylon for Abadan

18 November 1949 berthed at Melbourne, Victoria, Australia from Abadan to discharge

5 December 1949 sailed Melbourne, Victoria, Australia for Abadan

22 January 1950 sailed Fremantle, Australia to Abadan but was forced to return shortly after sailing with a defect to the engines. Sailed 24 hours later with the defect repaired.

13 March 1950 berthed at Chowder Bay, NSW, Australia from Abadan to discharge

19 March 1950 sailed Chowder Bay, NSW, Australia

16 May 1950 berthed at Portsmouth Harbour

20 May 1950 sailed from Portsmouth Harbour

24 July 1950 Mr Keith U Rapley RFA appointed as Chief Engineer Officer

25 July 1950 arrived at The River Tyne - Wallsend Slipway from Rosyth

22 February 1951 Captain A R Wheeler RD RFA (Lieutenant Commander RNR) appointed as Master

9 August 1951 berthed at Singapore to discharge

22 September 1951 berthed at Hebburn on Tyne from Scapa Flow

13 November 1951 berthed at Palmers (Hebburn) on Tyne together with RFA WAVE SOVEREIGN for repairs of refit

27 November 1951 sailed for Curacao from the River Tyne

17 January 1952 arrived at Bombay

8 August 1952 Mr K Jones RFA appointed as Chief Engineer Officer

19 August 1952 Captain F A Shaw RFA appointed as Master

11 September 1952 at Charleston Roads, off Rosyth with USS Ammen (DD527) alongside being refuelled


USS Ammen (DD527)

1 April 1953 arrived for refit at Swan Hunter, Wallsend on Tyne from Antwerp

28 May 1953 sailed the River Tyne for Mena-al-Amadi

12 July 1953 Captain Alfred M Uglow RFA appointed as Master

13 July 1953 Mr G Thompson RFA appointed as Chief Engineer Officer

28 September 1954 passed the Lloyds SIgnal Station at Dover sailing east bound

19 November 1954 Captain Albert E Curtain OBE RD RFA (Commander RNR Rtd) appointed as Master

1 May 1955 Mr J H Young RFA appointed as Chief Engineer Officer

21 July 1955 sailed Houston for Curaço

10 September 1955 Captain William H G Hine RFA appointed as Master

11 October 1955 arrived at Trinidad

29 November 1955 arrived Plymouth undertow of the tug HMS REWARD having broken down in the Bay of Biscay

14 February 1956 ran aground within a few feet off Lower Barakka while entering Grand Harbour, Malta. She had sailed from Killingholme near Grimsby. Pulled off by the tugs Sea Giant, Diligent, Marauder, Mediator and Prompt without any apparent damage

28 March 1956 arrived at Aden

29 May 1956 arrived at the Clyde Anchorage

28 August 1956 berthed at Wallsend Slipway, River Tyne

12 December 1956 sailed New York for Curaçao

26 March 1957 arrived at Bridgeport from Curacao

9 April 1957 arrived at Portland ME

2 May 1957 sailed New York for Curacao

8 May 1957 arrived at Curacao

25 July 1957 sailed Curacao

25 September 1957 Captain J Bottomley RFA appointed as Master

3 December 1957 sailed Tail of Bank

19 December 1957 sailed Trinidad for LEFO

7 January 1958 arrived at the Oil Fuel Depot at Old Kilpatrick, River Clyde

28 November 1958 Mr J R Warne RFA appointed as Chief Engineer Officer

16 December 1958 arrived at Gibraltar

14 January 1959 sailed Gibraltar for Trinidad 

16 February 1959 at Glasgow

1 May 1959 sailed Malta for Devonport

11 May 1959 at Devonport

March 1960 sold to H G Pounds, Portsmouth and became a storage hulk at Le Havre replacing Wave Conquerer.

1960 resold to Societe Miroline, Le Havre and renamed NOEMA

8 February 1964 arrived at Bilbao, Spain for breaking up.



  1. Was part of the British Pacific Fleet Train - hence the B-pennant number
  2. The ships badge at the head of this card is an Unofficial one


Additional information

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