Allied Warships

HMS Kanimbla (F 23)

Armed Merchant Cruiser

NavyThe Royal Navy
TypeArmed Merchant Cruiser
Class[No specific class] 
PennantF 23 
Built byHarland & Wolff Ltd. (Belfast, Northern Ireland) 
Laid downJul 1934 
Launched12 Dec 1935 
Commissioned20 Nov 1939 
End service 

On 27 August 1939 the passenger ship Kanimbla of the McIlwraith, McEacharn Ltd, Victoria was requisitioned by the Royal Navy and converted to an armed merchant cruiser. She served in the Royal Navy although she was manned by an Australian crew. Conversion was completed on 20 November 1939.

Displacement: 10985 BRT
Armament: 7x 152mm, 2x 76mm, 2x Lewis MG
Speed: 19 knots

November 39 - August 40: China Station
September 40 - November 41: East Indies Station
December 41 - February 43: Pacific Ocean

From February to June 1943 converted to a landing ship LSI(L), commissioned into the Royal Australian Navy as HMAS Kanimbla on 2 June 1943. Took part in the landing operations in Morotai, Lingayen Gulf, Brunei and Balikpapan.

As LSI(L) she was armed with 1 4" gun, 2 12pdr AA (2x1), 10 20mm AA (10x1)
She carried 10 LCA's and 1381 troops.

On 25 March 1949 HMAS Kanimbla was decommissioned and on 13 December 1950 returned to owner.


Commands listed for HMS Kanimbla (F 23)

Please note that we're still working on this section.

1Cdr. Frank Edmund Getting, RAN11 Oct 193915 Mar 1941
2A/Capt. William Leslie Graham Adams, RN25 Mar 19412 Feb 1943
3A/Cdr. Frederick Ross James, RAN2 Feb 194329 Jul 1943
4A/Cdr. Norman Hamon Shaw, RAN30 Jul 194317 Jun 1944
5Cdr. Andrew Veitch Bunyan, RANR(S)18 Jun 19445 Sep 1945
6A/Cdr. Stanley Hamill Crawford, RD, RANR(S)6 Sep 194522 Jan 1948

You can help improve our commands section
Click here to Submit events/comments/updates for this vessel.
Please use this if you spot mistakes or want to improve this ships page.

Notable events involving Kanimbla include:

19 Jan 1940
HMS Regulus (Cdr. J.M. Money, RN) conducted exercises off Hong Kong together with HMS Kanimbla (A/Capt. F.E. Getting, RAN). (1)

23 Feb 1940
HMS Pandora (Lt.Cdr. J.W. Linton, RN) conducted exercises off Hong Kong with HMS Kanimbla (A/Capt. F.E. Getting, RAN). (2)


  1. ADM 173/16472
  2. ADM 173/16396

ADM numbers indicate documents at the British National Archives at Kew, London.

Return to the Allied Warships section