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SS Breda facts for kids

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Name SS Breda
Namesake Breda
Owner Koninklijke Nederlandsche Stoomboot Maatschappij
Builder Nieuwe Waterweg Scheepsbouwmaatschappij, Schiedam
Laid down 16 December 1919
Launched 2 July 1921
Completed 10 December 1921
Identification Call sign: PDGH
Fate Bombed and sunk, 23/24 December 1940
General characteristics
Type Cargo-passenger ship
  • 6,941 GRT
  • 9,850 DWT
Length 122.69 m (402 ft 6 in)
Beam 17.78 m (58 ft 4 in)
Depth 7.25 m (23 ft 9 in)
Speed 15 knots (28 km/h; 17 mph)
Armament 1 × 4.7 in (119 mm) gun (1940)
Breda toothbrush
Bone toothbrush found on SS Breda. The inscription reads "WARRANTED PURE BRISTLE" "ADDIC HERTFORD 1940"

SS Breda was a Dutch cargo-passenger ship sunk in Scotland during World War II.


The ship was built at the Nieuwe Waterweg Scheepsbouwmaatschappij ("New Waterway Shipbuilding Company") yard at Schiedam for the Koninklijke Nederlandsche Stoomboot Maatschappij ("Royal Netherlands Steamship Company"). Laid down on 16 December 1919, she was not launched until 2 July 1921, and finally completed on 10 December 1921. The 6,941 GRT ship was 122.69 metres (402 ft 6 in) long, and 17.78 metres (58 ft 4 in) wide, and was powered by two Metropolitan-Vickers steam turbine engines, giving her a top speed of 15 knots (28 km/h; 17 mph). She had five cargo holds, and could also accommodate up to 87 passengers.

Ship history

After the invasion of the Netherlands in May 1940 the Breda fled to Britain, where she was placed under the control of the P&O Line, and armed with a single 4.7-inch (120 mm) gun.

On 23 December 1940 she was laying off Oban, part of a convoy being assembled that was bound for Bombay. She carried a mixed general cargo that included 3,000 tons of cement, 175 tons of tobacco and cigarettes, three Hawker and 30 de Havilland Tiger Moth biplanes, Army lorries, NAAFI crockery, copper ingots, rubber-soled sandals, banknote paper, 10 horses and nine dogs.

At dusk a group of Heinkel He 111 bombers flying from Stavanger, Norway, swept across the anchorage, and straddled the Breda with four 250-kilogram (550 lb) bombs. The force of the explosions ruptured a water inlet pipe, and the engine room was rapidly flooded, depriving the ship of power. She was quickly taken under tow, and beached in shallow water in Ardmucknish Bay. The next day, only a small part of her cargo had been offloaded before a storm swept her into deeper water where she sank to a mean depth of 26 metres (85 ft) at position 56°28′32″N 5°25′04″W / 56.47556°N 5.41778°W / 56.47556; -5.41778.

The ship has since become a popular dive site, marked by buoys.

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