Yard Number 281 was named INDIA when launched on Wednesday 15/04/1896 by Caird & Company Greenock for Peninsular & Oriental Steam Navigation Company
Ship Type: Passenger Liner
Ship's Role: UK/India and Australia services
Tonnage: 7911 gross; 4185 net; 5515 dwt
Length: 499ft 11in
Breadth: 54ft 4in
Draught: 26ft 9in
Peninsular & Oriental Steam Navigation Company
Her main engines were built by the shipbuilder , she was powered by Three cylinder triple expansion steam engine, 11000ihp, single screw, 18 knots
She ended her days torpedoed and sank on 08/08/1915
15/04/1896: Launched by Miss Mary Anne Kendall, daughter of a director of her owners, The Peninsular and Oriental Steam Navigation Company, London.
The first of five sisters, (followed by PERSIA, CHINA, EGYPT and ARABIA), she was the largest P&O vessel to date. The class were the last single~screw mail steamers built for the Company. Her equipment included a new type of insulated speaking tube 408ft long.
12/09/1896: Trials, delivered. She could carry 317 First Class and 152 Second Class passengers, or 2500 troops.
20/08/1900: First P&O ship to use the new harbour at Fremantle, replacing Albany.
1903: Beat Norddeutscher Lloyd’s FREIDRICH DER GROSSE from the Red Sea to Australia by no less than 24 hours.
1912: Insulated cargo capacity removed.
1914: Left in P&O service at the outbreak of war. Carried Admiral Sturdee home from Gibraltar after the Battle of the Falklands.
13/03/1915: Hired by the Admiralty for service as an armed merchant cruiser, and served in the 10th Cruiser Squadron.
08/08/1915: Torpedoed and sunk by the German submarine U22 off the island of Helligvaer, near Bodo, Norway, with the loss of 10 officers and 150 ratings. INDIA had stopped to investigate a suspected blockade~runner. The surviving 22 officers and 119 men were taken to Narvik by the steamer GOTALAND and HM armed trawler SAXON.
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Photo supplied by John Ward~McQuaid