Pendant Number: R12

Callsign: GKZL

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Altiora peto

(I seek higher things)

Cdr. H G Vere RN (In Command)
12 Oct 70 - 16 Nov 72
During conversion at Devonport

HMS HERMES (ex-Elephant) was an aircraft Carrier (22,500 tons) and was built by Vickers Armstrong, Barrow on the 16th February 1953. She was commissioned at the end of 1959. I joined her from June to the end of November 1971 in Devonport dockyard whilst she was undergoing a long refit and conversion to a Commando Carrier. Three years later she would yet again be converted to an ASW carrier for helicopters.

All signal traffic was dealt with in shore offices during the day. Duties onboard were mainly fire-watching.

In 1982 she was the flagship to the Task Force which recaptured the Falkland Islands from Argentina in June.

Sold to the Indian Navy in April 1986 and handed over in May 1987 after her refit in Devonport, having being renamed VIRAAT.

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