The Warilda was an Australian steamer, built for the Adelaide Steamship Company in 1907 by W. Beardmore & Co Ltd on the clyde at Glasgow. She was over 411ft in length had a beam of almost 57ft & a draft of 34ft. Powered by her quadruple-expansion engines giving her a speed of 16knots.
Requisitioned by the British Government the Warilda was put to use as a troopship during the First World War & was armed with a 4inch rapid fire gun on her stern. After several voyages the Warilda was fitted out as a hospital ship and served the Southampton – Le Havre route.
On the 3rd August 1918 when returning from France loaded with wounded she was torpedoed mid-channel some 36miles South of Brighton. The Warilda did not sink straight away but remained afloat for several hours allowing time to evacuate some 678 wounded & ships crew including the commander, Captain Simm. However when she did slip below the surface she took with her 123 persons, for his actions in saving so many lives Captain Simm was decorated with an O.B.E.
Today the wreck of HMHS Warilda lays on the seabed some 49mtrs below the surface at low water, she rests on her stbd side at 45degrees and is very much intact. This monster wreck is an awesome sight with great areas to explore, especially around the stern with it’s large open spaces & huge rudder and 4inch gun sitting upright on its pedestal on the seabed. With huge shoals of fish decorating the wreck this is a divers dream and should definitely be on every divers list.