Title: H M Australian Ship Kapunda – A fine little fighting ship

Author: Williams, Mal

Condition: Very Good

Edition: 1st Edition

Publication Date: 1991

ISBN: 0646082795

Cover: Hard Cover without Dust Jacket – 204 pages

Comments: The detailed history of HMAS Kapunda during World War II. 

HMAS Kapunda (J218/M218), named for the town of Kapunda, South Australia, was one of 60 Bathurst class corvettes constructed during World War II, and one of 36 initially manned and commissioned solely by the Royal Australian Navy (RAN).

Kapunda entered service as a convoy escort along the east coast of Australia. Initially operating between Sydney and Brisbane, she was reassigned to the Queensland-New Guinea run in March 1943. Kapunda fired in anger for the first time during March, when eight Japanese bombers and twelve Japanese fighter aircraft attacked a convoy escorted by Kapunda and sister ship Bendigo. Anti-aircraft fire from the two corvettes drove the aircraft off. On 12 April, a convoy under escort by the corvette was attacked by a formation of 37 Japanese aircraft. Several aircraft were destroyed by combined fire from Kapunda and the merchant ships, but the merchantman MV Gorgon was successfully hit and started to burn. Kapunda manoeuvered alongside the damaged ship and sent firefighting parties aboard, extinguishing the flames and helping Gorgon to proceed to port.

On 1 April 1944, the corvette was redeployed to New Guinea. Kapunda was tasked with convoy escort, anti-submarine patrol, and shore bombardment duties, and remained in the area until October 1944, when she returned to Sydney for refit. After the refit concluded in late November, she returned to her duties in New Guinea, and with the exception of a brief docking in Darwin in June 1945, served in these roles until the end of World War II.

Following the war, Kapunda was used to assist the evacuation of Allied prisoners-of-war from Kuching, and was the venue for the signing of the surrender of Japanese forces in the Kuching area, with Major General Yamamura signing the instrument of surrender onboard. Kapunda returned to Australian waters in November 1945.

The corvette received two battle honours for her wartime service: “Pacific 1942-45” and “New Guinea 1943-44”

Very Good Condition – Evidence of a label removed top right front cover.

Includes names and some profiles of the ships crew.