Loader

1695 - Launch of HMS SHREWSBURY

6th February. The 2nd rate ship Shrewsbury of 80 guns was launched from the Dockyard. She fought at Velez Malaga on the 13th August 1704. In this battle Admiral Sir Gorge Rook commanded an Anglo-Dutch fleet of 53 sail-of-the-line against a Franco-Spanish fleet of 50 sail-of-the-line and 24 galleys. The Allies had captured Gibraltar a month beforehand. The French Admiral Comte de Toulouse sailed from Toulon with the intention of gaining a naval victory and re-capturing Gibraltar. The battle occurred 25 miles south-east of Marbella and developed into an all-day gun duel with no major units being taken, burnt or sunk. Allied casualties were 1095 killed and 1663 wounded; the Franco-Spanish casualties were 1,500 killed and over 3,000 wounded. The following day the enemy made no attempt to renew the battle and Rook was content to return to Gibraltar. Although classed as a draw it left the Allies in the ascendancy at sea and they were not seriously challenged again during the remaining nine years of the war. The retention of Gibraltar helped Britain to dominate and command the Western basin of the Mediterranean Sea. Shrewsbury was also present at the battle of Cape Passero on 11th August.

1718. In which Admiral Sir George Bying was later rewarded with the title of Viscount Torrington. The battle was fought between the British and Spanish fleets four months before a declaration of war, so technically the two countries were not at war.

The Shrewsbury was finally broken up at Portsmouth in 1749.