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HMS Appledore (1941-1948)
Ensign of the Royal Navy animated.gif
CountryFlag United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland.gif United Kingdom
AllegianceBritish Empire
BranchNaval Ensign of the United Kingdom.svg Royal Navy
Part ofPlymouth Station (1941-1945)

Appledore was a naval base and area command of the Royal Navy.It was a subordinate command of the Plymouth Station.[1]


Bideford and Appledore Map

Appledore is seaport village founded in the 16th century and located on the west bank of the tidal River Torridge at its confluence with the River Taw; jointly they flow NW for 4 km to Bideford Bay. Bideford town and port lies 4 km upstream. The town has a long maritime history associated principally with ship building; an industry that remains the dominant employer to the present day.

Until the mid 19th century the riverbank was crowded with boat builders and ship repair yards; these have all disappeared. Whilst Appledore has a long association with the sea there was no formal quay until 1845 when property owners on the eastern side of Market Street joined their garden walls together to form the Market Quay. In 1855 the Appledore Ship Yard was founded on the estuary of the River Torridge , It was known as "P.K. Harris & Sons" until it became Appledore Shipbuilders in 1963.

In 1939-40 the old quay was doubled in width. In 1942 the Combined Operations Experimental Establishment, or COXE, was set up by the Royal navy on this site. Known as HMS Appledore, the establishment and wider area command was commanded by Rear Admiral Harold G C Franklin RN.[2] The naval base was paid off in 1948.

Naval HQ

Naval Officer-in-Charge Appledore

  1. Rear-Admiral Harold Gordon Cooper Franklin, July, 1941 - July, 1945, (retd).[3]

Commandant Combined Training Center Appledore

  1. Rear-Admiral Harold Gordon Cooper Franklin, July, 1941 - July, 1945, (retd).[4]


  1. Houterman, Hans; Koppes, Jeroen. "World War II unit histories & officers". Netherlands: Houterman and Koppes. Retrieved 9 July 2020.
  2. Houterman and Koppes. Plymouth Command.
  3. Houterman and Koppes. Plymouth Command.
  4. Houterman and Koppes. Plymouth Command.