Bulolo (Burns Philp)

Taken over on 22 September 1939 by the British Ministry of War Transport on behalf of the Royal Navy, Bulolo commenced conversion to the Armed Merchant Cruiser role on 21 October, this being completed in January 1940. For the next two years she operated almost entirely in the Atlantic Ocean on convoy escort duties as well as searching German raiders and capturing Vichy French ships. Conversion to a Landing Ship Headquarters, with enhanced communications facilities, started on 4 April 1942, enabling participation in October in the North Africa Operation “Torch” landings. On 6 June 1944 Bulolo, hosting the Naval Commander for Force “G” of the Normandy landings, led assault ships to craft lowering positions then remained off the beach directing the assault. Following major refit later in 1944 she participated as a headquarters ship in the 1945 Allied re-occupation of South East Asia. She returned to the United Kingdom, her naval service being terminated on 5 December 1946, with hand back to owners after refit during 1948.