This Site

This site was created because Bill Hartland's great original site about HMS Gambia that was active from 2003 disappeared in 2014. The remains of that can still be found on the Web Archive. In late 2016, I thought I'd try and resurrect the site. The Web Archive unfortunately did not archive many of the larger images but most of the text is still there and so this site is a mixture of Bill's original, pages from my own site which are about my own father's service on HMS Gambia, and new material I have been able to find.

Bill had a lot of material on his site but unfortunately the Web Archive was not able to collect all of it. We are hoping to make this site as comprehensive as we can, so if you have any material at all that can help, I really would appreciate it if you could contact me at


Since 1999, a lot of people have helped provide content, especially images, for both my and Bill's original sites. Without them neither site would have grown or be as interesting as they were or are and we thank them for taking the time and effort to contact us.

This site contains the content from both our sites as well as new material that has been sent to us. Other material has come from various public domain and creative commons sources such as Wikimedia Commons and the Imperial War Museums.

Where I have used information and ideas from other websites, those have been acknowledged on the pages the information was used.


The site is mostly edited in Adobe Dreamweaver.
Image editing done in Adobe Photoshop
Audio clips were edited in Audacity or Adobe Soundbooth.
Optical Character Recognition (OCR) of documents was done using OneNote, part ofthe Microsoft Office suite
Speech to text transcription of audio and video files was done using the online VoiceBase service

I have tried to make the site as responsive to different devices as I can.
The main menu was adapted from Medialoot's "Responsive Navigation Menu Using Only CSS"
The image and media galleries are dependant on Fancybox v2.1.6.
Table and spreadsheet functonality was added using Google Charts. For a while I was using Awesome Table as well but I can code most things through Google Charts
The site search is provided by Google's Custom Search Engine
Analytics are provided by Google Analytics. I was using GoStats but that stopped working properly in 2018
The site is currently hosted on my own "Server in the Cellar". That was originally running WAMPServer but now uses a version of Apache provided by Apache Haus.

For his work on the original HMS Gambia Association website, Bill Hartland was made a lifetime member of the HMS Fiji Internet Association. In July 2017 I was given the same honour for my work on this one.

HMS Fiji Internet Association scroll for Bill Hartland HMS Fiji Internet Association scroll for Ray Thomas

To Do

Commanders - find more biographical information.

Addison Joe Baker-Cresswell who also commanded HMS Bulldog when he captured U110 and an enigma machine.

I need to search and for whatever articles they have about the ship. Another source is Trove of the National Library of Australia. I have an account here and can correct the OCR text.

I need to go through the original HMS Gambia website's guestbook to get more information.

As well as the original commission and crew pages, depending on how much information I can find, I want to have particular sections on the

Dazzle pattern camoflage
The convoy system and why it was used
Jenny's Side Party
A history of the JET (Joint Exercise at Trincomalee) Exercises
Medal ribbon finder. There are several visual ribbon finders around - British Armed Forces Medals, Campaign Medals, Identify Medals, Medals of the World, and Military Awards and Decorations are examples. But I am thinking of a utility where you can type the order of the colors, or choose them from a list and it will try and identify the medal ribbon from the order of the colours.
Peanut Club
Royal Navy rank abbreviations - The Royal Navy Lists has lots so do the sites at Glossary of Ranks (internet Archive), Ratings Titles, and the wartime Navy Lists on the National Library of Scotland website

Go through Commission Books and to update Timeline page.

Write a short introduction to each commission page showing the order of the places visited and events using the Timeline and information from the Commission Books.

Once the 1950/2 commission page is done, write separate crew pages for dad, Ken Booth, Alan Goodwin, John Richard Hill, Jock Kerr, and Miles Rivett-Carnac.

A longer term project would be to create a 3D model of HMS Gambia from photographs of her and the other ships of the Crown Colony class, using some of the software listed on the Wikipedia Photogrammetry page.

Some technical stuff to do:

Create XML Sitemap file of images and documents so the site can be indexed fully - especially by the Internet Archive so it can be preserved.


National Memorial Arboretum - Done September 2019

The link between Huddersfield and HMS Gambia - Done September 2019

Main Menu: I need to be able to add more depth to it ie Ken Lobb's monthly diary entries. At the moment it will display the lower level menus no matter which parent is open. In the end I decided to use a subset of the Crew List - the ones that had at least some sort of information about them, no matter how short. The reason for this is that as more information came to light, the menus were getting long and a little out of hand. - Done January 2019

I didn't realize that some of these pages would be so long. I need to rewrite the menu to include sub-menus. I am currently using an adaption of Medialoot's "Responsive Navigation Menu Using Only CSS" but it needs to look more like the one at W3bit's "CSS-only Responsive Multi-level Navigation Menu". W3Bit's mobile version needs to be clickable across the full width of the menu items. This was done in March 2017.

Even with sub-menus the list of crew biographies was getting out of hand. They were all replaced a subset of the crew list table. The table uses Google Charts and is driven by a spreadsheet in Google Docs. This was done in January 2019.

1953 Spithead Coronation Review - Done November 2017

Diyatalawa rest camp (HMS Uva), Ceylon - Done November 2017

Collision with HMS Phoebe - Done October 2017

Len Bloomfield was a well-respected, decorated Royal Marine and he needs his own page - Done September 2017

Crossing the Line - Done August 2017

Cock of the Fleet Regatta / Chucking Up Boats - Done June 2017

The crewlist now has clickable links for crew members that I have information for. This was done in April 2017. The table uses Google Charts and is driven by a spreadsheet in Google Docs.

The crewlist now has a date slider to allow the user to choose to filter the list by the year someone started their tour of duty. The code for the slider is based on Google Chart controls. This was done in April 2017.

All the documents I have are now scanned but I need to tidy them up, make the text searchable and get them on the website. The documents include Ken Griffin's service records, the Commission Books for 1955/6 and 1958/60 as well as the 1953 Coronation Review program. All these documents were added to the website in March 2017.