- Letter Writer
- Ship design and development, Letter to the Editor
- None noted.
- RAN Ships
- None noted.
- December 2008 edition of the Naval Historical Review (all rights reserved)
In your June Edition, John Smith wrote an article about the later River Class Frigates in the RAN and wondered whether the changes made from the first four led them to be more effective operational units.
In 1964 I was one of the other two lowly staff officers in DTSR’s office with John when we developed the Staff Requirement for the two follow-on River Class, which were to replace Voyager (Swan and Torrens). I well remember the problems we had getting approval for more effective equipment and the arguments we made for fitting stabilizers. I returned to Navy Office in 1968 as Director of Underwater Weapons, after being XO of Perth, and with a few other officers on the naval staff with recent DDG experience, we were also able to make some significant changes to the layouts of the bridge and operations rooms of the later ships. I was then fortunate to be the first Captain of Torrens in 1971 and reap the benefit of much forethought and hard work from ‘Young Turks’ in Navy Office.
The changes certainly did increase the operational effectiveness of the ship (I had been the Commissioning TAS Officer in Stuart in 1963).