The Royal Naval Air Service added to its fleet of aircraft carriers today, with the commissioning of HMS Manxman.
The Admiralty purchased the Manxman in December 1915 from the the Midland Railway Company where she was operating as a passenger ferry on the on the Heysham to Douglas run. Manxman was built at the yards of Vickers Sons and Maxim at Barrow-in-Furness Following purchase the ship was converted into an aircraft carrier at Chatham Dockyards and is a ‘mixed carrier’, which can operate four seaplanes from a hangar aft, and four landplanes from a flying off ramp and hangar forward. She has a crew of 150 plus another 73 aviation personnel.
She is a steel triple-screw turbine vessel, with a length of 330 feet, beam of 43 feet and a depth of 18 feet. Her engines generate 10,000 horsepower, which before conversion gave the ship a speed of 21 knots. The conversion has unfortunately reduced this to 18 knots.
The ship has initally been equipped with the Sopwith Baby and the Curtiss 184 Seaplanes.
HMS Manxman© IWM (Q 74319)