The Bridge is the nerve centre of the ship and is located as high as possible in the superstructure. All the ship’s sensors are located here, so that the Captain is quickly informed of any enemy contacts.
In the centre of the bridge is the Compass Platform which is the control centre of the ship. Here the Officer of the Watch gives orders regarding the direction and speed of the ship and where the Captain takes command in the event of action.
Other compartments on the bridge include radar, ASDIC and the navigation Plot. It is also where the Gunnery Officer and the Anti-submarine Officer issued orders on the use of the ship’s armament.
Instruments on the compass platform include a gyro-compass repeater (forward stand), a magnetic compass (after stand), dials giving the rudder angle and engine revolutions and voice pipes to other parts of the ship. There were nine voice pipes for communication to other parts of the ship – one to the Captain’s cabin, one to the wheelhouse below, one to the engine room, one to the gyro-compass room, one to each side of the signal deck, one to the wireless office, one to the crow’s nest high up on the mast and one to the emergency steering position in the stern of the ship. Elsewhere on the bridge, voice pipes were connected to the guns, depth charge positions and to the Hedgehog position.
Also located here is the captain’s chair, with the box which held his binoculars.
Usually there would be the Officer of the Watch, two lookouts, a Bosun’s mate and signalman on the bridge. During action, the Captain, Gunnery Officer, Anti-submarine Officer and extra messengers and signalmen would be here also.
The bridge was uncovered when the ship was at sea. As a result the bridge could be a very uncomfortable, with rain, ocean spray and the occasional wave breaking keeping the watch keepers wet and cold.
On the bridge wings are signalling lamps and a single 20 mm Oerlikon anti-aircraft gun. During World War 2, Diamantina carried one on each side of the bridge.