Previous names

  • 1958 - 1999 Pembroke Petrel
Certificate no 1223
Status National Historic Fleet


Function Service Vessel
Subfunction Tender
Location Dumbarton
Vessel type Seaplane Tender
Current use Ongoing conservation
Available to hire No
Available for excursions No
Info required Yes


Builder British Power Boat Co Ltd. Hythe
Built in 1942
Hull material Wood
Rig None
Number of decks 1
Number of masts
Propulsion Motor
Number of engines 1
Primary engine type Diesel
Boiler type None
Boilermaker None


Breadth: Beam
11.90 feet (3.63 m)
2.59 feet (0.79 m)
Length: Overall
41.57 feet (12.68 m)
Tonnage: Gross
Air Draft
To be confirmed


This vessel was built as ST 1500 in 1942 by the British Powerboat Company (BPBCo), Hythe to a design by George Selman, the chief designer of BPBCo. ST 1500 was the first of a commissioned batch. Her first placement was with 62 Maintenance Unit in Dumbarton on the Clyde. In March 1942, ST 1500 was taken over by the Coastal Command of RAF Catfoss for the use of the Marine Section Bridlington as one of 2 seaplane tenders operating from the town. When two more arrived, ST 1500 was dedicated to air sea rescues and a Lewis gun was fitted in her cockpit. In November 1942, she was transferred to RAF Chivenor in Somerset operating out of Ilfracombe Harbour. Her prime task was target towing. In late 1944, ST 1500 was seconded to the Catalina base at Kiladeas in Northern Ireland. She was then moved to the Marine Aircraft Experimental Establishment at Felixstowe on October 9 1945.

In 1948, she was based at RAF Immingham Docks but, in 1949, she returned to Felixstowe. In 1953, there were terrible floods on the East Coast and ST 1500 was involved in ferrying essential supplies on the Medway from Sheerness to Sun Pier, Chatham and provided a passenger service. She was also used for a short period at Woolwich transferring the explosive officers who checked and supervised the loading of explosive on ships about 2 miles off Southend pier. On 11 June 1956, RSL 1500 was moved from 1103 MCU Felixstowe to 238 MU Calshot for repair.

On 30 December 1957, her intended next movement was to HQFEAF (Far East Air Force) for command reserve. She was repainted in tropical white, but remained in storage at Calshot until her disposal on 17 December 1958. She was bought by Milford Haven Marine Services and renamed PEMBROKE PETREL. By 1963, it had become uneconomic to provide the service to the terminals by boat and PEMBROKE PETREL was sold to the owner of a caravan park near Tenby. She was used until 1976 for running trips around the bay. She was then gifted to the Tenby Sea Cadets. In 1983 she was disposed of and in 1993 bought and moved to Brightlingsea, then to Marchwood Military Port, Southampton. The current owners acquired the vessel in July 1995 and she is now based in Scotland.

We are currently seeking further information on this National Historic Fleet vessel. If you have any details about this vessel past or present, please contact us.


World Ship Society British Armed Forces Small Craft Historical Society, Survivors Register, 1998

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