HMS Venerable (R63)

HMS Venerable (R63) was a Colossus-class aircraft carrier of the Royal Navy. She served for only the last few months of World War II, and in 1948 she was sold to the Netherlands and renamed HNLMS Karel Doorman, taking part in the military clash in 1962 in Western New Guinea. Subsequently, she was sold to Argentina and renamed ARA Veinticinco de Mayo, later taking part in the Falklands War.

HMS Venerable (R63).jpg
HMS Venerable
United Kingdom
Name: HMS Venerable
Ordered: 7 August 1942
Builder: Cammell Laird
Yard number: 1126
Laid down: 3 December 1942
Launched: 30 December 1943
Commissioned: 17 January 1945
Decommissioned: April 1947
Identification: Pennant number R63
Fate: Sold to the Netherlands 1 April 1948
Name: HNLMS Karel Doorman
Namesake: Karel Doorman
Acquired: 1 April 1948
Commissioned: 28 May 1948
Decommissioned: 29 April 1968
  • 1955-1958
  • 1965-1966
Identification: R81
Fate: Sold to Argentina 15 October 1968
Name: ARA Veinticinco de Mayo
Namesake: Date of the May Revolution
Acquired: 15 October 1968
Commissioned: 12 March 1969
Decommissioned: 1997
Out of service: Inoperable by 1990
Refit: 1969
Homeport: Puerto Belgrano Naval Base
Identification: V-2
Fate: Provided spare parts for Minas Gerais and remainder was scrapped at Alang, India in 2000
General characteristics
Class and type: Colossus-class aircraft carrier

Construction and careerEdit

HMS Venerable was laid down at Cammell Laird in Birkenhead on 3 December 1942 and launched just over a year later. The ship was commissioned on 17 January 1945.[1] As with others of the class completed just before the ending of hostilities, HMS Venerable immediately headed to the Far East to join the 11th Aircraft Carrier Squadron (Colossus, Glory and Vengeance) of the British Pacific Fleet. Each carrier had around 40 F4U Corsair fighters and Fairey Barracuda torpedo bombers on board.

After the end of hostilities, HMS Venerable repatriated prisoners of war to Canada and Australia, before returning to the UK. Venerable only served three years in the Royal Navy before being sold to the Dutch as HNLMS Karel Doorman. In 1968, after a boiler-room fire, she was sold to the Argentine Navy and renamed ARA Veinticinco de Mayo.

By 1990, she was inoperable, and she subsequently provided spare parts for her sister ship, Minas Gerais, which had been sold to the Brazilian Navy. The remaining part of the ship was scrapped in Alang, India in 1999 or 2000.


  1. ^ Beaver, Paul (1987) Encyclopedia of the Fleet Air Arm since 1945, Wellingborough, Northants: Patrick Stephens, ISBN 0-85059-760-9

External linksEdit