HMAS
Fremantle
(II)

HMAS Fremantle (II)
Class
Fremantle Class
Type
Patrol Boat (PB)
Pennant
P203
International Callsign
VLRA
Motto
Incorruptible
Builder
Brooke Marine Shipyard, Lowestoft, England
Laid Down
11 November 1978
Launched
16 February 1979
Launched by
Lady Freeth, Wife of Australian High Commissioner
Commissioned
17 March 1980
Decommissioned
11 August 2006
Dimensions & Displacement
Displacement 250 tonnes
Length 42 metres
Beam 7.15 metres
Draught 1.8 metres
Performance
Speed 24 knots
Range 2360 nautical miles at 12 knots
Complement
Crew 24
Propulsion
Machinery
  • Two MTU 538 series 16-cylinder main propulsion engines
  • One Dorman 12-cylinder auxiliary propulsion engine
Horsepower 6140
Armament
Guns
  • 40/60 Bofors general purpose gun
  • 2 x .50 calibre (12.7mm) machine guns
Awards
Inherited Battle Honours
HMAS Fremantle (II) Badge

Fremantle and her 14 sister FCPBs were the Navy's principal contribution to the nation's fisheries protection, immigration, customs and drug law enforcement operations.

Fremantle, the first of the class, was built in the UK, while the other 14 were built in Cairns. The carry the names of the Bathurst class Australian Minesweepers which served during and after World War II.

 
HMAS Fremantle prior to launching.
HMAS Fremantle prior to launching at Brooke Marine Shipyard, Lowestoft, England on 16 February 1979.
Naming ceremony of HMAS Fremantle on 8 October 1979 at Brooke Marine Shipyard, Lowestoft, England.
Naming ceremony of HMAS Fremantle on 8 October 1979 at Brooke Marine Shipyard, Lowestoft, England.

The vessels worked hand-in-hand with other Government agencies and each year they provided up to 1800 patrol days as part of the Coastwatch-managed national surveillance effort. In the event of war they would have been tasked to control the waters close to the Australian mainland. They were well prepared for their patrol duties and other operational requirements.

In addition were central to Australia's engagement with countries in the South West Pacific region and deployed throughout Southeast Asia and the Pacific in support of Australia's strategic interests. The Fremantle Class Patrol Boats (and now the Armidale Class Patrol Boats) also supported Special Forces operations and provided a useful transport capability, particularly in disaster relief and humanitarian assistance operations.

HMAS Fremantle II
Left: HMAS Fremantle II, with the Sydney Opera House in the background. Right: Image of HMAS Fremantle II's name plaque.
Left: HMAS Fremantle II, with the Sydney Opera House in the background. Right: Image of HMAS Fremantle II's name plaque.

Fremantle was equipped with high definition navigational radar, high and ultra high frequency communications equipment, gyro compasses and echo sounder. She was also fitted with a satellite navigation system that enabled the ship's position to be determined with great accuracy.

Fremantle was the second ship of this name within the RAN. HMAS Fremantle (I) was a Bathurst class corvette.

HMAS Fremantle with some of her sister ships from the Fremantle Class
HMAS Fremantle with some of her sister ships from the Fremantle Class.

Commanding Officers of HMAS Fremantle (II)

17 Mar 1980-16 May 1980 Lieutenant RJ Thomas, RAN
16 May 1980-19 Jun 1981 Lieutenant Commander RJ Thomas, RAN
19 Jun 1981-01 Aug 1982 Lieutenant JF Cooper, RAN
01 Aug 1982-24 Dec 1982 Lieutenant Commander JF Cooper, RAN
24 Dec 1982-17 Apr 1984 Lieutenant Commander SM Burrell, RAN 
17 Apr 1984-29 Jan 1986 Lieutenant Commander MA Finnis, RAN
29 Jan 1986-26 May 1987 Lieutenant Commander BJ Wilson, RAN
26 May 1987-05 Feb 1989 Lieutenant Commander DL Nield, RAN
05 Feb 1989-17 Nov 1989 Lieutenant NJ Wark, RAN
17 Nov 1989-26 Apr 1991 Lieutenant WJ O'Hagan, RAN
26 Apr 1991-09 Oct 1992 Lieutenant AB Belton, RAN
09 Oct 1992-01 Jan 1993 Lieutenant LD King, RAN
01 Jan 1993-17 May 1994 Lieutenant Commander LD King, RAN
17 May 1994-24 Oct 1995 Lieutenant Commander RJ Dunn, RAN 
24 Oct 1995-17 Apr 1997 Lieutenant Commander KM Jonas, RAN
17 Apr 1997-23 May 1999 Lieutenant Commander MP Gargiulo, RAN
23 May 1999-13 Sep 2000 Lieutenant Commander TJ Gibson, RAN
13 Sep 2000-10 July 2002 Lieutenant Commander AJ Allica, RAN
10 July 2002-13 Dec 2003 Lieutenant Commander MD Brown, RAN
13 Dec 2003-16 Dec 2005 Lieutenant Commander AG Morthorpe, RAN
16 Dec 2005-13 Mar 2006 Lieutenant Commander RJ Scott, RAN
13 Mar 2006-11 Aug 2006 Lieutenant JA Harper, RAN