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HMAS Sydney to be paid off

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FRIDAY. JULY 20. 1973 No. 115/73


(Statement by the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Defence, the Hon. l.H. Barnard, MP)

The transport HMAS SIDNEY is to be paid off.

She will be withdrawn from the Australian Fleet and will

go into reserve pending disposal.

HMAS SYDNEY whose operational life was expected

to end in 1974 was due to start an expensive refit next week.

Because of the extent of the refit (which was to

cost approximately $500,000) and the age and condition of

the ship, an examination of the economics of the project and

the ship's programme has indicated that the cost effectiveness

of operating the ship for another year does not justify the


• Accordingly, the Government has decided to pay

off HMAS SYDNEY now, rather than progress an expensive refit

which would only give small benefits to the nation.

Brief History

A former flagship of the RAN, HMAS SYDNEY first

saw service in the RAN as a light aircraft carrier. She

was first commissioned into the RAN in December 1948 equipped

with Sea Furies and Fairy Fireflies.

SYDNEY served with distinction in Korean waters

in 1951-52 and again in 1953-54 where she mounted aerial

strikes against tanks, trains,bridges, supply depots and

troop concentrations.

She landed her aircraft in May 1955 and began her

role as a training ship.

She was recommissioned in her present role of

amphibious transport in March 1962.

SYDNEY made 24 return trips to Vietnam with

troops: and equipment in her transport role.

Enquiries; Director of Public Relations, Department of Defence, Canberra, ACT, 2600. ,

Telephone: 65 2999 (Working hours) 47 8342 (After hours)