HMHS Llandovery Castle

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HMHS Llandovery Castle
HMHS Llandovery Castle.jpg
U-Boat UB-86.jpg
Two German U-Boats grounded near Falmouth in 1921. The one nearer to the camera is UB 86
Name HMHS Llandovery Castle
Owner Union-Castle Mail Steam Ship Co. Ltd., London
Builder Barclay, Curle & Co. Ltd., Glasgow
Yard number 504
Launched 4 Sep 1913
Completed January 1914
In service 1914
Out of service 27 Jun 1918
Fate Torpedoed and sunk
General characteristics
Type passenger / cargo
Tonnage 10,639 tons
Length 500 ft 1 in (152.43 m)
Beam 63 ft 3 in (19.28 m)
Propulsion twin screw
Speed 15 knots (27.78 km/h)
Capacity crew of 258


Designed to carry 429 passengers. Converted as a hospital ship in 1916, she could service 622 beds with 102 medical staff. She was chased by a U-Boat off cape Finisterre on 8 Jun 1916, but her speed saved the day. The sinking of the Llandovery Castle by U-Boat U-86 116 miles west of Fastnet Light off southern Ireland on 27 June 1918 is considered one of the worst atrocities of the war. She was employed as a hospital ship enroute from Halifax to Liverpool. Lights illuminating her Red Cross were on when she was torpedoed without warning.

Firing at a hospital ship was against international law and the standing orders of the Imperial German Navy. The captain of U-86, Helmut Brümmer-Patzig, sought to destroy the evidence of torpedoing the ship. When the crew took to the lifeboats, U-86 surfaced, ran down all but one of the lifeboats and machine-gunned many of the survivors. Only 24 people survived out of the 258 people on board. UB-86 was a UB III-class submarine that was commissioned on 10 November 1917, and which made five patrols during the First World War. It was surrendered to Great Britain on 24 November 1918.

Soldiers carried

Alexandria to Marseilles Acting as a troop ship 20 - 25 March 1916