HMS Grinder was launched on 7 March 1855.
During the summer of 1855 HMS Grinder
and nine other gunboats (Beagle, Boxer, Cracker, Curlew, Fancy, Jasper,
Vesuvius, Swallow and Wrangler ) were employed destroying fisheries and
corn stores, as well as ammunition stores, around the Sea of Azov. Their
raids forced the Russian land forces to maintain a state of constant
readiness lest there be a landing. Raids on Russian food and ammunition stores were also carried out
to prevent supplies reaching the Russian troops in the Crimea.
The British naval squadron,
including Grinder, was active on 23 September 1855 at the entrance to
the Sea of Azov in destroying communications between Temryuk and Taman,
an area of shallow seas, swamps and bridges.
For some of this
summer period, Grinder, under the command of Lieutenant Francis Trevor
Hamilton, served as a tender to the first rate Royal Albert, flagship of
Rear Admiral Sir Edmund Lyons, Bart GCB. From July 1855 Grinder was
commanded by Lieutenant Burgoyne. She played her small part in the
actions against the fort at the head of Dnieper Bay as part in a joint
force of British and French warships, including the steam frigate
Valourous, Gladiator and Clinker, on 18 October 1855.
activities of the squadron, including Grinder, consisted of destroying
vast quantities of provisions and fuel near the town of Yeisk in the Sea
of Azov on 3 November 1855, just as the weather was changing to make
naval activities there impossible. The attacks were on such a broad
front that even the presence of 1500 Cossacks in the area did not
inconvenience the landing parties.
The Grinder chasing Russian boats in the Sea of Azov, 31 August 1855: