This is the Tri-ang Minic Ships model of HMS Albion in its guise as a "Commando Carrier" complete with helicopters, which are actually M 880 Whales with rotors from the County Class Destroyers nailed to their heads.
It is certainly the rarest naval model made by Tri-ang Minic Ships and is possibly the rarest ship in the entire range. It is believed that only 500 of this model were made, exclusively for presentation to the Captain and crew of HMS Albion, however the 1965 Price List does list this model and the helicopters for sale.
The model is identical to the other carriers except that it has a helicopter deck layout which is printed on heavy duty paper and glued to the flight deck.
Despite being listed in the 1965 Price List as M 752 Commando Ship the underside of the ship is actually marked HMS Albion with the model number blanked out as can be seen in the photograph below.
As a "Commando Carrier" HMS Albion could operate up to 30 helicopters, primarily Wessex and Whirlwinds, and had capacity for 800 Royal Marine Commandos together with all their associated vehicles and equipment.
The actual HMS Albion was completed with a 5.75 degree angled flight deck. It was converted into a "Commando Carrier" between January 1961 and August 1962 when all the equipment for operating fixed wing aircraft was removed.
|Please see the Collector's Corner for further information on this rare model - an examination of such questions as whether it was available for Retail Sale, was it the same casting, how many were made, how was it marked.|
|Builder:||Swan, Hunter & Wigham Richardson Ltd, Wallsend on Tyne|
|Laid Down:||23rd March 1944|
|Launched:||6th May 1947|
|Commissioned:||26th May 1954|
|Converted:||1961 - 1962|
|Displacement:||27,300 tons Full Load|
|Length (OA):||737 ft 9 in ( 224.9 m )|
|Beam:||90 ft ( 27.4 m )|
|Draft:||28 ft ( 8.5 m )|
|Armament:||8 twin mount 40 mm Bofors anti-aircraft guns|
|Protection (Armour):||1" - 2" over decks, magazines and machinery spaces - minimal other armour|
|Propulsion:||4 Admiralty 3 drum boilers, 2 Parsons single reduction geared turbines, 2 shafts, 78,000 shp|
|Maximum Speed:||28 knots|
|1035 including Air Group plus 733 troops|
|Flight Deck Dimensions:||737 ft 9 in ( 224.9 m ) by 123 ft 6 in ( 37.6 m )|
|Aircraft:||16 helicopters after conversion|
|Disposal:||16th November 1973 scrapped at Faslane|
|Further details can be obtained from the following linkss -|
|The Haze Gray & Underway Web Site||http://www.hazegray.org/navhist/carriers/uk_light.htm#r06|
|Alex's Royal Navy Page||http://www.btinternet.com/~a.c.walton/navy/rn-cv3.html|