HMAS Barcoo

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HMAS Barcoo
HMAS Barcoo.jpg
Name HMAS Barcoo
Owner Royal Australian Navy
Builder Cockatoo Docks & Engineering Co. Ltd, Sydney
Launched 26 Aug 1943
Completed 16 Jan 1944
In service 17 Jan 1944
Out of service 21 Feb 1964
Fate Sold for scrap 15 Feb 1972
General characteristics
Type River class Frigate
Tonnage 1,340 tons
Length 91.85m
Beam 11.18m
Depth 3.66m
Propulsion 5,500 HP
Speed 20 knots
Capacity 140 crew


Following her sea trials and work up, the Barcoo sailed for New Guinea waters, and convoy escort duties. In early 1944 she was used to bombard Kar Kar island and Banaburi Harbour in east New Guinea. This was followed between June and August by further convoy escort work, before proceeding to Sydney in September 1944 for a brief refit, returning to northern waters on 19 Oct 1944. During November 1944 she was again bombarding shore targets, this time on New Britain and in the Wide Bay area, before returning to escort duties.

In late January 1945 she proceeded to Sydney for a refit, returning to New Guinea on 27 Mar 1945. In April she proceeded to Morotai Island to prepare for a role in the invasion of Borneo. She participated in the landing at Tarakan on 1 May 1945 and then at Brunei Bay. Her final warlike act was in bombarding Japanese positions on the east coast of Borneo on 3 Aug 1945.

Up until February 1946 she was engaged in ferrying troops, and returned allied POWs. HMAS Barcoo was granted a refit and conversion at Williamstown Naval Dockyard in Melbourne before becoming a survey vessel in August 1946. During this time she was driven ashore at Glenelg in South Australia during a fierce storm before being laid up on 25 Sep 1956. She returned to service in 1959 before being decommissioned on 21 Feb 1964. Placed in reserve, she was finally sold for scrap on 15 Feb 1972.

Battle Honours

  • Pacific 1941-45
  • New Guinea 1942-44
  • Borneo 1945

Soldiers carried