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HMCS Ontario: Canadian Light Cruiser
by John MacFarlane 2017
HMCS Ontario (Photo from the John MacFarlane collection. )
In 1945 she was built at Belfast NI UK by Harland & Wolff Ltd. as HMS Minotaur. She was 555.5’ x 63’ x 16.5’ steel hull She was powered by four Admiralty–type three drum boilers driving four shaft Parsons steam turbines 72,500 shp (54,100 kW).
HMCS Ontario (Photo from the Nauticapedia collection. )
She was commissioned into the Royal Navy at Belfast NI in April 1945, she was in the Red Sea en route to the Pacific when she was commissioned into the Royal Canadian Navy. In 1945 she was renamed as HMCS Ontario and was transferred to Esquimalt BC via the Suez Canal through the Pacific. She joined the 4th Royal Navy Cruiser Squadron of the British Pacific Fleet too late for active service. In 1 July she was transferred to Esquimalt for refit. She spent the remainder of her career as a training ship.
HMCS Ontario at sea in the South Pacific (Photo from Crowsnest Magazine OT-3773.)
The Ship’s bell of HMCS Ontario (Photo from the Nauticapedia collection. )
She carried three triple 6-inch / 50 Mk 23 guns; five twin 4–inch / 45 QF Mk 16 HA guns; four quad 2–pounder guns; six single 40 mm AA guns and two triple 21–inch (530 mm) torpedo tubes.
HMCS Ontario stripped of the easy salvage and the rest going to the breakers. (Photo from the Nauticapedia collection. )
In 1951 she proceeded to the Atlantic to embark HRH the Princess Elizabeth on her tour of Canada. In 1952 she made a goodwill cruise to Chile, Argentina, Uruguay and Brazil. In June 1953 she was one of six RCN ships which comprised the Canadian Coronation Squadron and took part in the Naval Review at Spithead. In 1954 she made a three-month cruise. In 1955 she made two major cadet training cruises including Australia, New Zealand and continental Europe. In 1956 and 1957 she made Pacific training cruises.
At the end of her career she was a cadet training ship.
HMCS Ontario was paid off on 15 October 1958. The ship was sold to a west coast firm which began but did not finish the job of breaking up the ship at Vancouver. The ship was resold, along with HMCS Quebec to Mitsui and Co. of Japan. She arrived at Osaka for breaking up November 16, 1960.
Superior Straits Towing HMCS Ontario to be Broken Up in Japan (Photo from the Nauticapedia collection. )
HMCS Ontario departs Esquimalt For the Last Time
(Photo from the Nauticapedia collection. )
To quote from this article please cite:
MacFarlane, John M. (2017) HMCS Ontario: Canadian Light Cruiser. Nauticapedia.ca 2017. http://nauticapedia.ca/Gallery/Ontario.php
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