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ADMIRALTY WAR DIARIES of WORLD WAR 2 - ADM 199/632

 

HOME FLEET DESTROYER COMMAND - July to December 1943

 

Transcribed by Don Kindell

HMS Icarus, destroyer, prewar (Navy Photos, click to enlarge)

on to Home Fleet Destroyers, January-December 1944

 

(for more ship information, go to Naval History Homepage and type name in Site Search)

Home Fleet Destroyer Operations September 1939 to April 1942

       
       
  Areas of Operations (click to enlarge). Only some locations in text are shown  

 

Click for Convoy Route Codes, Operation Code Names and Home Fleet Minelaying


 

HOME FLEET DESTROYER COMMAND WAR DIARY

 

 

JULY 1943

 

Thursday, 1st July 1943

 

TALYBONT left Scapa at 1000 on completion of working up practices and arrived at Portsmouth during the forenoon on the 4th.

 

ICARUS arrived at Scapa at 1700 for working up practices on completion of refit.

 

 

Friday, 2nd July 1943

 

SCORPION having completed working up practices join the Home Fleet Destroyer Command, being temporarily attached to the Third Destroyer Flotilla

 

 

Saturday, 3rd July 1943

 

Captain (D) Seventeenth Destroyer Flotilla in ONSLOW with OBDURATE and ORWELL in company left Scapa at 0600 for Skaalfiord for Operation S F which has as its object the destruction of U-boats on passage by the Northern route.  They arrived at Skaalfiord in the evening.

 

ULSTER arrived at Scapa at 0600 for working up practices on first commissioned.

 

WOODCOCK arrived at Scapa at 1900 for working up practices.

 

SCORPION left Scapa at 2200 for Hvalfiord where she arrived on the forenoon of the 5th.

 

CUMBERLAND and METEOR left Hvalfiord during the evening for Scapa where they arrived on the morning of the 5th.

 

 

Sunday, 4th July 1943

 

NARBADA left Scapa at noon for Greenock on completion of working up practices, where she arrived the following afternoon.

 

MIDDLETON left Scapa at 1600 for Hull to refit where she arrived the following forenoon.

 

 

Monday, 5th July 1943

 

SAUMAREZ arrived at Scapa at 0800 for working up practices on first commissioning.

 

 

Tuesday, 6th July 1943

 

NORFOLK, BERWICK, and SCORPION left Hvalfiord p.m. for Operation CAMERA.

 

 

Wednesday, 7th July 1943

 

OPPORTUNE and OBEDIENT left Scapa at 0700 with Force R for Operation CAMERA.

 

ONSLAUGHT left Scapa at 0900 with Rear Admiral Commanding 10th Cruiser Squadron in BELFAST, KENT, and LONDON, forming Force “Q” for Operation CAMERA.  They were joined by OBDURATE at 2300, who was temporarily detached from Operation S F.

 

MUSKETEER, METEOR, and MAHRATTA left Scapa at 1600, screening FURIOUS for Operation CAMERA.

 

Captain (D) Third Destroyer Flotilla in MILNE with US destroyers ELLYSON, EMMONS, MACOMB, FITCH, and RODMAN sailed from Scapa at 1700 with Commander in Chief Home Fleet in HMS DUKE OF YORK for Operation CAMERA.

 

 

Thursday, 8th July 1943

 

ORIBI arrived at Plymouth during the forenoon having returned from the United States on completion of repairs to damaged stem sustained when ramming a U-boat on 6 May.

 

 

Friday, 9th July 1943

 

OBDURATE having detached from Operation CAMERA arrived at Skaalfiord during the forenoon to continue Operation S F.

 

RAMILLIES escorted by ROEBUCK and BRILLIANT left Scapa at 0300 for Rosyth where they arrived in the afternoon.  The destroyers returned to Scapa where they arrived at 2300.

 

The Commander in Chief, Home Fleet and Fleet Units returned to Scapa during the forenoon on completion of Operation CAMERA escorted by the destroyer: MILNE (Captain (D) Third Destroyer Flotilla), MUSKETEER, MAHRATTA, ONSLAUGHT, METEOR, ELLYSON, FITCH, RODMAN, EMMONS, and MACOMB.

 

ORIBI left Plymouth at noon for Scapa where she arrived at 0800 on the 11th.

 

 

Saturday, 10th July 1943

 

OPPORTUNE and OBEDIENT arrived Scapa at 0700 from Operation CAMERA.

 

GRENVILLE left Scapa at 1100 for the Clyde to boiler clean, where she arrived the next morning.

 

Vice Admiral, Second in Command, Home Fleet in ANSON, with USS ALABAMA escorted by US  Destroyers ELLYSON, MACOMB, FITCH, RODMAN, and EMMONS left Scapa at 2000 for Hvalfiord they arrived on Monday 12th.

 

SCORPION returned to Hvalfiord on completion of Operation CAMERA.

 

 

Sunday, 11th July 1943

 

ONSLAUGHT left Scapa at 0400 for Hvalfiord where she arrived the following day.

 

Captain (D) Third Destroyer Flotilla in MILNE left Scapa at 1600 for Plymouth where she arrived on the morning of 13th.

 

Captain (D) Seventeenth Destroyer Flotilla in ONSLOW arrived at Scapa at 1800, detached from Operation S F.

 

OPPORTUNE left Scapa at 2200 to join Operation S F.

 

BERWICK, NORFOLK, and SCORPION left Hvalfiord p.m. for exercise X C K.

 

 

Monday, 12th July 1943

 

ONSLOW docked in the floating dock at Scapa for hull repairs.

 

WOODCOCK and BEAGLE left Scapa on completion of working up practices.

 

ONSLAUGHT left Hvalfiord at 2300 for Scapa where she arrived at 0700 on the 14th.

 

 

Tuesday, 12th July 1943

 

No events or movements of importance.

 

 

Wednesday, 14th July 1943

 

MAHRATTA left Scapa at 2000 for Rosyth where she arrived early next day for boiler cleaning.

 

SCORPION left Hvalfiord at 2300 for Scapa where she arrived on the morning of the 16th.

 

 

Thursday, 15th July 1943

 

FURIOUS, escorted by ONSLAUGHT, OBEDIENT, and ORIBI left Scapa at 0400 for Liverpool where they arrived on the following morning.  During the passage ORIBI was detached to search for a missing aircraft from FURIOUS.  The missing aircraft was not located and ORIBI proceeded to the Clyde where she arrived on the morning of the 16th.  ONSLAUGHT and OBEDIENT having left Liverpool on arrival proceeded to the Clyde where they arrived during the afternoon on the 16th.

 

 

Friday, 16th July 1943

 

No events or movements of importance.

 

 

Saturday, 17th July 1943

 

ROEBUCK left Scapa at 0400 for Sheerness, having completed working up practices.

 

Captain (D) Third Destroyer Flotilla in MHS MILNE left Plymouth at 1200 for Scapa arriving on the morning of the 19th.

 

GODAVARI arrived at Scapa at 1300 for working up practices.

 

OPPORTUNE, OBDURATE, and ORWELL left Skaalfiord at 1900 from Operation S F which has been temporarily abandoned, escorting RFA BLACK RANGER to Scapa where they arrived at 1400 the next day.

 

GRENVILLE left the Clyde during the evening, on completion of boiler cleaning and having a new Bofors gun mounting fitted, for Scapa where she arrived the following forenoon.  GRENVILLE join the Home Fleet Destroyer Command, temporarily, having completed working up practices.

 

ONSLAUGHT, ORIBI, and OBEDIENT left the Clyde p.m. escorting ILLUSTRIOUS to Scapa where they arrived the following morning.

 

ATHABASKAN completed repairs at Plymouth and joined the Plymouth Command temporarily.

 

SAVAGE completed working up practices and join the Home Fleet Destroyer Command,  being temporarily attached to the Third Destroyer Flotilla.

 

 

Sunday, 18th July 1943

 

ONSLAUGHT left Scapa at 1500 for Immingham to refit where she arrived the following day.

 

 

Monday, 19th July 1943

 

No events or movements of importance.

 

 

Tuesday, 20th July 1943

 

No events or movements of importance.

 

 

Wednesday, 21st July 1943

 

REDPOLE arrived at Scapa at 0800 for a short period of working up practices.

 

SCOURGE arrived at Scapa for working up practices on first commissioning.

 

MAHRATTA left Rosyth during the evening, on completion of boiler cleaning and arrived at Scapa the following morning.

 

OBEDIENT, ORWELL, and ORIBI left Scapa at 2330 for the Clyde to rendezvous with MALAYA and UNICORN at 1800 the next day and escort them to Scapa where they arrived at 1800 on the 23rd.

 

 

Thursday, 22nd July 1943

 

IMPULSIVE left the Humber at 1800 having completed repairs, and arrived at Scapa the following afternoon.

  

 

Friday, 23rd July 1943

 

Captain (D) Third Destroyer Flotilla in MILNE with MUSKETEER, METEOR, and MAHRATTA left Scapa at 0800 with ILLUSTRIOUS for exercises and then proceeded to Hvalfiord where they arrived at 1400 on the 25th.

 

BRILLIANT left Scapa during the afternoon for the Clyde where she arrived at 1300 the next day having completed working up practices.

 

OPPORTUNE left Scapa at 2100 for Rosyth where she arrived the following morning for boiler cleaning.

 

 

Saturday, 24th July 1943

 

GLEANER arrived at Scapa at 0900 for a short period of practices on completion of refit.

 

 

Sunday, 25th July 1943

 

MALAYA, escorted by SCORPION, SAUMAREZ, and IMPULSIVE left Scapa at 0800 for Port HHZ where they arrived during the forenoon.  The destroyers returned to Scapa where they arrived at 1600.

 

SAVAGE and RIPLEY escorting trawlers and ML’s left Scapa at 3100 for Sullom Voe where they arrived the following day at 1400 to take part in Operation GOVERNOR.

 

MATCHLESS, having completed refit, left the Humber at 2300 for Scapa where she arrived at 1900 next day.

 

 

Monday, 26th July 1943

 

ORWELL and ORIBI escorting oiler BLUE RANGER left Scapa at 1400 for Skaalefiord where they arrived at 1400 the next day, the destroyers remaining there ready to take part in Operation S F.

 

Vice Admiral Second in Command, Home Fleet in ANSON with ILLUSTRIOUS and USS ALABAMA escorted by Captain (D) Third Destroyer Flotilla in MILNE, MAHRATTA, MUSKETEER, and METEOR with US destroyers RODMAN, FITCH, MACOMB, and EMMONS left Hvalfiord at noon for Operation GOVERNOR.

 

 

Tuesday, 27th July 1943

 

ICARUS left Scapa at 1800 for Londonderry, having completed working up practices.

 

ORP ORKAN left Plymouth at 1000 for the Humber to refit where she arrived at 1500 on the 28th.

 

The Commander in Chief, Home Fleet, in HMS DUKE OF YORK with USS SOUTH DAKOTA, BERMUDA, and UNICORN, escorted by Captain (D) Seventeenth Destroyer Flotilla in ONSLOW, OBDURATE, OBEDIENT, GRENVILLE, ULSTER, MATCHLESS, SAUMAREZ, SCORPION, and IMPULSIVE left Scapa at 1600 for Operation GOVERNOR.

 

 

Wednesday, 28th July 1943

 

HMCS IROQUOIS left Plymouth at noon for Scapa.  At about 0545 the next morning, during fog, she collided with the trawler KINGSTON BERYL and sustained damage to her stem and plating forward.  IROQUOIS was diverted to Greenock for repairs where she arrived at 1700 the same day.

 

GLEANER left Scapa at 1300 for Londonderry.

 

 

Thursday, 29th July 1943

 

Commander in Chief, Home Fleet in HMS DUKE OF YORK with Fleet units and USS SOUTH DAKOTA and ALABAMA and destroyers MILNE (D 3), ONSLOW (D 17), OBDURATE, OBEDIENT, MUSKETEER, MATCHLESS, MAHRATTA, METEOR, GRENVILLE, ULSTER, SAUMAREZ, SCORPION, and US Destroyers EMMONS, MACOMB, RODMAN, and FITCH arrived Scapa during the day for Operation GOVERNOR.

 

Captain (D) Seventeenth Destroyer Flotilla in ONSLOW left Scapa at 2000 for Rosyth where they arrived early the next morning for boiler cleaning.

 

 

Friday, 30th July 1943

 

SAVAGE arrived at Scapa during the forenoon from Operation GOVERNOR.

 

OPPORTUNE left Rosyth during the evening and arrived Scapa at 0700 the following day.

 

UNICORN, escorted by SCORPION and GRENVILLE, left Scapa at 1030 for the Clyde where they arrived the following morning.  SCORPION returned to Scapa where she arrived at 2000 on the 31st.  GRENVILLE proceeded to Plymouth where she arrived on the evening of the 1st to join the Plymouth Command temporarily.

 

Captain (D) Third Destroyer Flotilla in MILNE with MUSKETEER and MAHRATTA left Scapa at 1100 for Skaalefiord to take part with ORWELL and ORIBI in Operation S F under the orders of the Commander in Chief, Rosyth.

 

IMPULSIVE left Scapa at 1700 for Hvalfiord where she arrived on 1 August.

 

 

Saturday, 31st July 1943

 

HMCS HURON arrived at Scapa at 0600 for working up practices on first commissioning.

 

REDPOLE left Scapa at 1300 on completion of working up practices to join the Western Approaches Command.

 

US Destroyer ELLYSON arrived at Scapa at 1400 from Hvalfiord.
 

 


 

 

HOME FLEET DESTROYER COMMAND WAR DIARY

 

 

AUGUST 1943

 

 

Sunday, 1st August 1943

 

TG 92.4 consisting of US Ships SOUTH DAKOTA, ALABAMA and destroyers ELLYSON, MACOMB, RODMAN, FITCH, and EMMONS left Scapa at 1700 having completed their period of operations with the Home Fleet.

 

Captain (D) Third Destroyer Flotilla in MILNE with MUSKETEER, MAHRATTA, ORWELL, and ORIBI engaged in Operation S F were ordered to cease patrol at 1800 and return to Skaalefiord where they arrived the following morning.

 

 

Monday, 2nd August 1943

 

Captain (D) Third Destroyer Flotilla in MILNE left Skaalefiord for Scapa where he arrived at 1000 the following day.

 

G.S. THEMISTOCLES arrived at Scapa at 1400 for working up practices on re commissioning.

 

MUSKETEER, MAHRATTA, ORWELL, and ORIBI were ordered to leave Skaalefiord in order to be in position for S F patrol by 1000 next day.

 

 

Tuesday, 3rd August 1943

 

SAUMAREZ and SCOURGE left Scapa at 0100 for Londonderry where they arrived at 1600 the same day.

 

METEOR left Scapa at 0500 escorting tanker MOSLI to Skaalefiord and to join in Operation S F.  They arrived at 1000 the next day.

 

ILLUSTRIOUS escorted by OPPORTUNE, OBEDIENT, and OBDURATE left at 2100 for Operation QUADRANT.

 

CASTLETON, WELLS, and ST MARY'S on passage to Hvalfiord where diverted by Commander in Chief Home Fleet to join in Operation S F in approximate position 62N, 14W and to hunt for a U-boat sighted and known to be passing through the area.

 

 

Wednesday, 4th August 1943

 

MATCHLESS and SCORPION left Scapa at 0700 for Londonderry where they arrived at 2200 the same day.

 

SCOURGE and SAUMAREZ left Londonderry at 0900 for Operation QUADRANT.

 

Captain (D) Third Destroyer Flotilla in MILNE left Scapa at 1600 for the Humber to refit, where she arrived on the morning of the next day.

 

METEOR left Skaalefiord at 1900 for Operation S F.

 

MIDDLETON left the Humber at 2100, on completion of refit, and arrived at Scapa the following afternoon.

 

ULSTER left Scapa at 2300 to escort a transport to the Faroes where she arrived the following day.

 

At 0933 CASTLETON sighted a U-boat on the surface.  At 0936, the U-boat disappeared following a large explosion at the stem following an attack by a Sunderland aircraft.  It was later ascertained that the U-boat had scuttled herself having been damaged by the air attack.  The Sunderland was shot down by the U-boat and six survivors were rescued by CASTLETON who also picked up 23 U-boat survivors.

 

ORWELL picked up 33 U-boat survivors amongst whom was the crew of a BV 138 which the U-boat had rescued after it had been shot down by our fighters during Operation GOVERNOR.  The U-boat was a supply boat U 489.  CASTLETON proceeded to Hvalfiord where she arrived at 0400 the next day.  ORWELL proceeded to Scapa where she arrived at 0900, having disembarked the U-boat prisoners at Scrabster at 0700.

 

 

Thursday 5th August 1943

 

SAVAGE left Scapa at 0530 and proceeded to Loch Eriball where the First Lord of the Admiralty and Mr. Bevin Minister of Labour embarked.  SAVAGE returned to Scapa where she arrived at noon.

 

The First Lord of the Admiralty and the Minister of Labour visited HMS TYNE during the afternoon.

 

MATCHLESS and SCORPION left Londonderry at noon for Operation QUADRANT.

 

ULSTER left the Faroes at 2000 for Invergordon, escorting a transport.  She arrived at noon the following day and then proceeded to Scapa where she arrived during the afternoon.

 

Captain (D) Seventeenth Destroyer Flotilla in ONSLOW left Rosyth at 2100 on completion of boiler cleaning and arrived at Scapa early the following morning.

 

 

Friday, 6th August 1943

 

ORWELL embarked the Fist Lord of the Admiralty and Minister of Labour and proceeded to Scrabster where they disembarked at 1100.  ORWELL returned to Scapa.

 

MUSKETEER, METEOR, MAHRATTA, and ORWELL were ordered to leave S F patrol at 1400 and returned to Skaalefiord where they arrived early the next day.

 

 

Saturday, 7th August 1943

 

No events or movements of importance.

 

 

Sunday, 8th August 1943

 

ILLUSTRIOUS, escorted by OPPORTUNE, OBEDIENT, and OBDURATE arrived at the Clyde at 0900 from Operation QUADRANT.

 

IMPULSIVE left Hvalfiord at 1000 for an operation under the orders of Rear Admiral (M) and returned to Hvalfiord on the morning of the 10th.

 

Senior Officer, 15h Minesweeping Flotilla IN FRASERBURGH with LLANDUDNO, WORTHING, BOOTLE,  and DUNBAR left Seidisfiord at 1400 to take part in Operation S F.

 

SCORPION arrived at Greenock at 2000 from Operation QUADRANT.

 

 

Monday, 9th August 1943

 

SAVAGE and MIDDLETON left Scapa at 0600 to rendezvous with MALAYA off Port HHZ and escort her to Scapa where they arrived at 1900.

 

MATCHLESS arrived at Scapa at 0700 from Operation QUADRANT.

 

MUSKETEER, METEOR, MAHRATTA, and ORIBI left Skaalefiord at 0900 in order to be on the S F by 1800 patrol the same day.

 

SCOURGE and SAUMAREZ arrived at St John’s, Newfoundland during the forenoon from Operation QUADRANT.

 

ULSTER having completed working up practices joined the Home Fleet Destroyer Command temporarily.

 

 

Tuesday, 10th August 1943

 

SAVAGE left Scapa at 1700 for Greenock where she arrived the following afternoon.

 

MIDDLETON left Scapa at 1830 for Skaalefiord where she arrived at 0600, disembarked mails and proceeded to Hvalfiord where she arrived at 1100 on the 12th.

 

 

Wednesday, 11th August 1943

 

SAUMAREZ and SCOURGE left St John’s, Newfoundland at 1000 on passage to Scapa where they arrived at 1600 on the 15th.

 

SHIKARI and SABRE arrived at Scapa at 1000 from Londonderry.

 

 

Thursday, 12th August 1943

 

ROCKET arrived at Scapa at 0700 for working up practices on first commissioning.

 

SHIKARI and SABRE left Scapa at 1500 for Skaalefiord in order to join Operation S F.They arrived early next morning.

 

Captain (D) Seventeenth Destroyer Flotilla in ONSLOW proceeded to Scrabster where His Majesty the King embarked at 1445.  ONSLOW proceeded to Scapa, escorted by MATCHLESS, ULSTER, and HERON where they arrived at 1600. His Majesty disembarked to HMS DUKE OF YORK.

 

His Majesty the King visited HMS TYNE arriving on board at 1750.  All destroyers present were berthed alongside.  His Majesty inspected the ship’s company of HMS TYNE and a representative body of all destroyers present, leaving to 1830 to return to the flagship.

 

 

Friday, 13th August 1943

 

ILLUSTRIOUS and UNICORN, escorted by SAVAGE, SCORPION, OPPORTUNE, OBDURATE, and OBEDIENT left the Clyde at 0600 for Gibraltar where they arrived on 17th August.

 

The groups of destroyers and minesweepers on Operation S F left patrol at 1000 and returned to harbor, MUSKETEER, METEOR, ORIBI, and MAHRATTA arriving at Skaalefiord at 2300 the same day.

 

ORWELL left Rosyth at 1400 for Scapa where she arrived at 2300.

 

SABRE left Skaalefiord at 2000 to rendezvous with Com (M) for Operation SN 74.

 

 

Saturday, 14th August 1943

 

No events or movements of importance.

 

 

Sunday, 15th August 1943

 

MUSKETEER and MAHRATTA left Skaalefiord for Operation S F to search for two U-boats reported sighted in the area by aircraft at 0236.  SHIKARI left at 1200 and METEOR at 1300 to join the search.

 

IMPULSIVE and MIDDLETON left Hvalfiord at 0700 to join Com (M) for Operation SN 74.

 

MATCHLESS, ORWELL, and ULSTER escorting H.M. The King in PHOEBE left Scapa at 1200 for Scrabster.  H.M. disembarked at 1330 and PHOEBE and the destroyers returned to Scapa.

 

ORIBI arrived at Scapa at 1230 from Operation S F and left during the evening for Rosyth to boiler clean where she arrived early the following day.

 

Rear Admiral Commanding Tenth Cruiser Squadron in HMS BELFAST with Captain (D) 17th Destroyer Flotilla in ONSLOW and ORWELL left Scapa at 1600 for Operation F N.

 

 

Monday, 16th August 1943

 

MATCHLESS and ULSTER left Scapa at 0700 for Skaalefiord to take part in Operation S F.  They arrived the same evening.

 

At 1803 METEOR obtained a contact with an echo classified “submarine”  After carrying out two attacks the contact was lost.  SHIKARI, in the vicinity, obtained a contact 40 minutes later and carried out five further attacks after which the contact faded and lost.

 

 

Tuesday, 17th August 1943

 

Rear Admiral, Tenth Cruiser Squadron, in BELFAST with ONSLOW (Captain (D) Seventeenth Destroyer Flotilla) and ORWELL arrived at Skaalefiord at 0500 from Operation F N.  The destroyers remained at Skaalefiord for Operation S F.

 

SHIKARI was detached from Operation S F at 0930 having a defect on her starboard propeller shaft.  She proceeded to Skaalefiord where she arrived the following morning.

 

IMPULSIVE left Hvalfiord at 1500 for Scapa where she arrived at noon on the 19th.

 

HUSSAR arrived at Scapa at 1600 for a short period of working up practices having completed refit.

 

HURON docked in the floating dock at Scapa.

 

MUSKETEER, METEOR, and MAHRATTA left the “moorings” area at 2359 for Scapa where they arrived at 0600 on the 19th.

 

 

Wednesday, 18th August 1943

 

BRISSENDEN arrived at Liverpool for repairs to damage sustained during operations.

 

SHIKARI left Skaalefiord at 1500 for Scapa where she arrived at 0900 the next day.

 

SAVAGE, SCORPION, and OBEDIENT left Gibraltar during the afternoon for the United Kingdom.

 

 

Thursday, 19th August 1943

 

SABRE arrived at Skaalefiord at 0800 from patrol on Operation S F.

 

U.S. Task Group 112.1 consisting of RANGER, TUSCALOOSA, AUGUSTA and destroyers FORREST (S.O.), HOBSON, BELL, ISHERWOOD,  and CORRY arrived at Scapa at noon to join the Home Fleet temporarily.

 

HURON undocked from the floating dock at Scapa.

 

INDOMITABLE left Gibraltar, escorted by OPPORTUNE, OBDURATE, and USS BUCK for the United States where they arrived on 29th August at Norfolk, Virginia.

 

 

Friday, 20th August, 1943

 

Captain (D) Seventeenth Destroyer Flotilla in HMS ONSLOW with ORWELL, MATCHLESS, and ULSTER left Skaalefiord for S F patrol.

 

 

Saturday, 21st August 1943

 

ZETLAND arrived at Scapa at 0900 for a short period of working up practices.

 

SABRE left Skaalefiord at 2300 on S F patrol.  Adverse weather conditions were encountered and she was ordered to return to Skaalefiord where she arrived at 1800 the next day.

 

 

Sunday, 22nd August 1943

 

SCORPION arrived at Greenock at 0800.

 

SAVAGE and OBEDIENT arrived at Scapa at 1700.

 

SARDONYX arrived at Scapa at 1200 for Operation S F.

 

SHIKARI left Scapa at 2000 for Londonderry for repairs where she arrived the following forenoon.

 

SAUMAREZ left Scapa at 1200 for Hull for fitting Type 272 where she arrived the following morning.

 

Captain (D), Seventeenth Destroyer Flotilla in ONSLOW with ULSTER were ordered to leave S F patrol at noon owing to weather and returned to Skaalefiord where arrived the following morning.

 

Rear Admiral, Tenth Cruiser Squadron in BELFAST with IMPULSIVE left Scapa at 2100 for Hvalfiord where they arrived at 1000 on the 24th.

 

HARDY arrived at 1100 for working up practices on first commissioning.

 

MATCHLESS and ORWELL were detached from Operation S F at 0430 and returned to Scapa where they arrived at 2200 the same day.

 

MIDDLETON left Hvalfiord at 1900 for Scapa where she arrived at 0900 on the 24th.

 

ORIBI left Rosyth at 2000 for Scapa where she arrived at 0600 next morning.

 

 

Monday, 23rd August 1943

 

SARDONYX left Scapa at 1500 for Skaalefiord for Operation S F where she arrived at 0800 nest morning.

 

GODAVARI left Scapa at 1800 for Greenock where she arrived the following evening, having completed working up practices.

 

BICESTER arrived at Scapa at 1900 for a short period of working up practices.

 

 

Tuesday, 24th August 1943

 

MATCHLESS and ORWELL left Scapa at 0015 for St Johns, Newfoundland to take part in Operation QUADRANT.  They arrived on 30th August.

 

ORIBI left Scapa for Skaalefiord at 0800 and arrived the same evening for Operation S F.

 

Captain (D) Seventeenth Destroyer Flotilla in ONSLOW with SABRE, SARDONYX, and ULSTER left Skaalefiord at 1100 for Operation S F to search for a U-boat reported by an aircraft.

 

MAHRATTA left Scapa at 2100 for Rosyth where she arrived the following morning to embark stores for Operation LORRY.

 

CORRY docked in the floating dock at Scapa.

 

 

Wednesday, 25th August 1943

 

ORIBI left Skaalefiord at 0600 to join Captain (D) Seventeenth Destroyer Flotilla on S F patrol.

 

JANUS arrived at Scapa at 0800 for a short period of Type 293 trials to be followed by working up on re commissioning.

 

MAHRATTA left Rosyth at 1900 and arrived at Scapa early the next morning.

 

ULSTER was detached from S F at 1600 and proceeded to Scapa where she arrived the following morning.

 

IROQUOIS left the Clyde on completion of repairs and arrived Scapa the following afternoon.

 

CORRY undocked.

 

 

Thursday, 26th August 1943

 

HUSSAR left Scapa at 1500 for Londonderry where she arrived the following afternoon.

 

ULSTER left Scapa at 2100 for Rosyth, to boiler clean where she arrived the following morning.

 

SABRE arrived Skaalefiord at 2100 having been detached from S F with a damaged propeller.

 

Captain (D) Seventeenth Destroyer Flotilla in ONSLOW with ORIBI and SARDONYX were ordered to leave patrol at 2000 and return to Skaalefiord where they arrived the next day.

 

MUSKETEER and MAHRATTA left Scapa at 2100 for Operation LORRY which had as its object the carriage of stores and personnel to North Russia.  They arrived at Skaalefiord at 0900 next morning and proceeded during the afternoon having fuelled.

 

 

Friday, 27th August 1943

 

SCOURGE having completed working up temporary attached to the Third Destroyer Flotilla.

 

HMCS ATHABASKAN and HMAS GRENVILLE, operating with the First Escort Group EGRET (S.O.), ROTHER and JED, off Cape Villano were attacked at 1314 by 19 Junkers 88 bombers using rocket glider bombs.  At 1317 ATHABASKAN was hit forward and at 1320 EGRET was hit and blew up.  Six officers and thirty ratings were rescued from EGRET.  ATHABASKAN had two ratings killed and 15 wounded.  Her No. 1 boiler room, “B” magazine and provision room were flooded with two oil fuel tanks open to the sea.  ATHABASKAN was able to proceed at 15 knots to Plymouth where she arrived at 2130 on the evening of the 30th.

 

BICESTER docked in the floating dock at Scapa.

 

 

Saturday, 28th August 1943

 

SABRE left Skaalefiord at 1030 for Scapa where she arrived the next morning.

 

Rear Admiral Tenth Cruiser Squadron in BELFAST with NORFOLK and IMPULSIVE left Hvalfiord at 0400 for covering operations for Operation LORRY.

 

HURON left Scapa at 2200 for the Clyde.

 

BICESTER undocked.

 

MIDDLETON docked in the floating dock at Scapa.

 

 

Sunday, 29th August 1943

 

CHIDDINGFOLD arrived at Scapa for a short period of working up practices.

 

ORKAN left the Humber at 1700 for Scapa, on completion of refit, where she arrived at noon on the following day.

 

SCORPION left Greenock at 1700 and rendezvoused with QUEEN ELIZABETH and HURON at the Clyde entrance at 1900.  The destroyers formed a screen for QUEEN ELIZABETH to Scapa where they arrived at 1400 next day.

 

 

Monday, 30th August 1943

 

At 0352 GRENVILLE operating with JED and ROTHER as First Escort Group.  At this time JED obtained a radar contact followed by asdic contact on a U-boat.  A first depth charge attack was carried out at 0420.  During the day a total of eighteen attacks were carried out by the Group up to 2014 when contact finally faded and could not be reestablished.  The whole area of the sea as covered with diesel oil.  Wreckage and two bales of sheet rubber were obtained.

 

Captain (D) Seventeenth Destroyer Flotilla in ONSLOW with ORIBI and SARDONYX left Skaalefiord at 2347 for Operation S F to search for a U-boat sighted by aircraft.

 

 

Tuesday, 31st August 1943

 

MIDDLETON undocked.

 

OPPORTUNE and OBDURATE left Norfolk, Va. for Halifax.

 

MUSKETEER and MAHRATTA arrived at the Kola Inlet at 0200. After disembarking stores and passengers they sailed for the return passage at 1300.

 

SAVAGE and MIDDLETON left Scapa at 2100 for Skaalefiord for Operation S F where they arrived the next day.

 

 


 

 

HOME FLEET DESTROYER COMMAND WAR DIARY

 

 

SEPTEMBER 1943

 

 

Wednesday, 1st September 1943

 

MATCHLESS having entered the dry dock at St John’s on the 31st August, had defective and leaky rivets in No. 4 fuel tank repairs and undocked during the afternoon.

 

SARDONYX was detached from  S F patrol at 1000 to Port ZA to join R.A. (M) for screening duties.

 

Captain (D) Seventeenth Destroyer Flotilla in ONSLOW with reminder of group left S F patrol at 2000 and returned to Skaalefiord where they arrived at 1000 next day.

 

SABRE docked in the floating dock at Scapa.

 

MALAYA escorted by SCOURGE left Scapa at 1600 for Clyde where they arrived the following afternoon.  SCOURGE returned to Scapa arrived at 0700 on the 3rd.

 

 

Thursday, 2nd September 1943

 

METEOR left Scapa at 0600 and arrived at Port ZA at 1400 to operate with R.A. (M) for Operation SN 222B.

 

THEMISTOCLES left Scapa t 1400 for Greenock where she arrived the following day having completing working up practices.

 

ULSTER left Rosyth at 1800 on completion of boiler cleaning for Plymouth to join the Plymouth Command temporarily.

 

Captain (D) Seventeenth Flotilla left Skaalefiord at 1600 and arrived Scapa the following morning.

 

OBEDIENT left Scapa at 2100 for Rosyth where she arrived the following morning for boiler cleaning.

 

 

Friday, 3rd September 1943

 

R.A. (M) with minelaying squadron escorted by LANCASTER, SCIMITAR, METEOR, and SARDONYX left Port ZA at 0600 to carry out Operation SN 222B.

 

Senior Officer, 1st Minesweeping Flotilla in HARRIER with GLEANER, HUSSAR, and SALAMANDER left Lough Foyle at 1000 for Scapa where they arrived the following evening.

 

Rear Admiral Commanding 10th Cruiser Squadron in BELFAST with NORFOLK and IMPULSIVE arrived at Hvalfiord at 1100 from covering operations for Operation LORRY.  MUSKETEER and MAHRATTA taking part in this operation arrived at Skaalefiord at 1430, fuelled and proceeded to Scapa where they arrived the following morning.

 

KISTNA arrived at Scapa at 0700 for working up practices on first commissioning.

 

OPPORTUNE and OBDURATE arrived at Halifax, Nova Scotia.

 

 

Saturday, 4th September 1943

 

VENUS arrived at Scapa at 0900 for working up practices on first commissioning.

 

SABRE undocked and left Scapa at 2000 for Skaalefiord for Operation S F.  She arrived the following forenoon.

 

MUSKETEER left Scapa for Rosyth where she arrived the following day for boiler cleaning.

 

 

Sunday, 5th September 1943

 

SHIKARI left Lough Foyle at 2000 for Scapa where she arrived the following evening.

 

 

Monday, 6th September 1943

 

METEOR arrived at Scapa at 1500 on return from Operation SN 222B.

 

HURON completed working up practices and was temporarily attached to the Third Destroyer Flotilla.

 

 

Tuesday, 7th September 1943

 

SHIKARI left Scapa at 0600 for Skaalefiord where she arrived at 1800 for Operation S F.

 

ZETLAND left Scapa at 1300 for Greenock having completed a short program of working up practices.

 

SARDONYX arrived at Skaalefiord at 1700 for Operation S F from Operation SN 222B.

 

MIDDLETON left Skaalefiord at 2000 for Scapa where she arrived the following day at 1000.

 

METEOR left Scapa at 2000 for Skaalefiord for Operation S F and arrived the following day at 0900.

 

 

Wednesday, 8th September 1943

 

Commander in Chief, Home Fleet in DUKE OF YORK with Vice Admiral, Second in Command,  Home Fleet in ANSON, Rear Admiral Commanding First Cruiser Squadron in LONDON, CTG 112.1 in RANGER, TUSCALOOSA, AUGUSTA, escorted by Captain (D) Seventeen Destroyer Flotilla in ONSLOW and destroyers HURON, ROCKET, ORKAN, IROQUOIS, MAHRATTA, US destroyers BELL, ISHERWOOD, HOBSON, FORREST, and CORRY left Scapa at 1700 for Operations.  They returned to Scapa on the afternoon of the 10th.

 

Rear Admiral Commanding 10th Cruiser Squadron in BELFAST with IMPULSIVE left Hvalfiord at 1700 to join Commander in Chief, Home Fleet.

 

SALAMANDER left Scapa at 1800 for Seidisfiord where she arrived at 2200 on the 10th.

 

 

Thursday, 9th September 1943

 

H Nor MS STORD arrived at Scapa at 0900 for working up practices on first commissioning.

 

OBEDIENT left Rosyth at 1900 on completion of boiler cleaning and arrived at Scapa at 0700 next day.

 

SABRE left Skaalefiord at 2200 to carry out exercise C P.  She arrived at Scapa at 2000 next day.

 

 

Friday, 10th September 1943

 

MIDDLETON left Scapa at 1100 for Hvalfiord where she arrived early on the morning of the 12th.

 

Rear Admiral Commanding Tenth Cruiser Squadron in BELFAST with NORFOLK and IMPULSIVE arrived at Hvalfiord at 1500 from operations.

 

IMPULSIVE left Reykjavik at 2300 for Scapa where she arrived at 1100 on the 12th.

 

 

Saturday, 11th September 1943

 

SABRE left Scapa at 0600 for Londonderry to boiler clean where she arrived the following day.

 

MUSKETEER left Rosyth in the evening on completion of boiler (section missing:  completed entry from Home Fleet War Diary, q.v.) cleaning and arrived at Scapa next day.

 

 

Sunday, 12th September 1943

 

BICESTER, CHIDDINGFOLD, and MALCOLM left Scapa at 1400 for Greenock on completion of a short working up programme.  They arrived the following morning.

 

Senior Officer, First Minesweeping Flotilla in HARRIER with GLEANER and HUSSAR left Scapa at 1600 for Seidisfiord to take part in Operation S F.  They arrived at 2000 on the 14th.

 

SAVAGE left Skaalefiord at 1900 for Scapa where she arrived next day.

 

OBEDIENT left Scapa at 2100 for Skaalefiord where she arrived at 0900 next morning for Operation S F.

 

 

Monday, 13th September 1943

 

SCORPION and SCOURGE left Scapa at 1300 for Londonderry where they arrived the following morning.

 

At 1500 GLEANER was ordered to return to Scapa to collect important mails.  She arrived the following morning.

 

ORIBI left Skaalefiord at 2300 for Scapa where she arrived next morning.

 

 

Tuesday, 14th September 1943

 

VIGILANT arrived Scapa for working up practices on first commissioning.

 

GLEANER left Scapa at 1300 for Hvalfiord where she arrived on the evening of 17th.

 

SCORPION and SCOURGE left Moville at 1900 for Operation QUADRANT.  They met RENOWN at 0300 on the 18th and formed screen to the Clyde where they arrived at 0900 on the 19th.

 

OPPORTUNE and OBDURATE left Halifax to form screen for RENOWN in Operation QUADRANT.

 

US Destroyers BELL and ISHERWOOD left Scapa at 2000 for Londonderry where they arrived the following afternoon.  They are no longer attached to the Home Fleet.

 

 

Wednesday, 15th September 1943

 

AMAZON arrived at Scapa at 0800 for a short period of working up practices before proceeding on Operation S F.

 

MATCHLESS and ORWELL left St John’s at 1100 for Operation QUADRANT.  They made contact with RENOWN at 1600 next day and formed a screen until 1030 on the 18thth when they were detached to Moville to fuel.  They arrived Moville at 0800 on the 19th and having fuelled proceeded to Scapa where they arrived on the 20th.

 

 

Thursday, 16th September 1943

 

HM Ships SHIKARI, OBEDIENT, and SARDONYX left Skaalefiord at 0700 for S F Patrol.  They returned to Skaalefiord on the 18th September 1943.

 

CTG 112.1 in USS RANGER escorted by FOREST, CORRY, and HOBSON left Scapa at 0930 for Operation QUADRANT.

 

METEOR left Skaalefiord at 1600 for Scapa.  On passage she encountered the trawler STAR OF EAST who had a broken propeller shaft, and took her in tow.  Tug FREEBOOTER was dispatched from Scapa and took over the tow during the following forenoon.  METEOR arrived at 1600 on the 17th at Scapa.

 

SAVAGE left Scapa at 1900 for Rosyth where she arrived the following morning for boiler cleaning.

 

OPPORTUNE and OBDURATE left HMS RENOWN’s screen during the afternoon having been relieved by MATCHLESS and ORWELL.  They arrived at St Johns the next afternoon.

 

 

Friday, 17th September 1943

 

MAHRATTA left Scapa at 0900 for Skaalefiord where she arrived the same evening for operation S F.

 

US Destroyers CAPPS and FITCH arrived at Scapa at noon to join Task Group 112.1 temporarily operating with the Home Fleet.

 

TEAZER arrived at Scapa at 1400 for working up practices.

 

 

Saturday, 18th September 1943

 

OPPORTUNE and OBDURATE left St Johns at 1900 for Argentia where they arrived the following morning.

 

 

Sunday, 19th September 1943

 

SHIKARI, OBEDIENT, SARDONYX, and MAHRATTA left Skaalefiord at 0600 for S F patrol.

 

HAIDA arrived at Scapa at 0700 for working up practices on first commissioning.

 

CTG 112.1 in RANGER with FORREST, CORRY, and HOBSON arrived at Scapa at 0900 from Operation QUADRANT.

 

ONSLAUGHT left Humber at 1000, on completion of refit, and arrived Scapa early next morning.

 

ROCKET and HARDY left Scapa at 1900 for Port ZA where they arrived at 0700 next day to join R.A. (M) for Operation SN 222C.

 

 

Monday, 20th September 1943

 

US Destroyer FITCH left Scapa during the forenoon for Scrabster where Colonel Knox, Secretary to the USN and Admiral Stark, Admiral Commanding U.S. Naval Forces in Europe, and party, embarked at 1300.  They proceeded to Scapa where they disembarked during the afternoon and embarked in DUKE OF YORK.

 

VICTORIOUS escorted by OPPORTUNE, OBDURATE, and CALDER left Argentia at noon for the UK where they arrived on the 26th September.  OBDURATE was detached to Scapa where she on the morning of the 27th.  OPPORTUNE proceeded to Londonderry where she arrived the same day.

 

 

Tuesday, 21st September 1943

 

R.A. (M) and Minelaying Squadron escorted by FLEETWOOD, ROCKET, HARDY, and SALADIN left Port ZA for Operation SN 222C at 0600.

 

Colonel Knox, Secretary of the U.S.N. visited US Destroyers at Scapa during the forenoon.  He embarked in ORIBI at 1200 for passage to Scrabster.

 

METEOR left Scapa at 1300 to refit at the Tyne where she arrived the following morning.

 

RENOWN escorted by SCORPION and SCOURGE left Greenock at 1400 for Scapa where they arrived at 1100 the following day.

 

MUSKETEER, ORWELL, ORIBI, and ORP ORKAN left Scapa at 2000 for Londonderry where they arrived at 1300 the next day.  They are temporarily detached and form the 10th Support Group operating in the Western Approaches.

 

 

Wednesday, 22nd September 1943

 

OBEDIENT and MAHRATTA were detached from S F patrol and ordered to join R.A. (M)’s screen to act as additional escort.  Owing to bad weather, the rendezvous was not effected and they proceeded to Skaalefiord where they arrived the next morning.

 

 

Thursday, 23rd September 1943

 

SCORPION, SCOURGE, and IMPULSIVE left Scapa at 1900 for Skaalefiord where they arrived the next day for Operation S F.

 

SAVAGE left Rosyth at 1900 for Skaalefiord for Operation S F.

 

SHIKARI and SARDONYX left Skaalefiord at 2000 where they arrived the next day at noon.

 

OBEDIENT and MAHRATTA left Skaalefiord at 2300 to join R.A. (M) screen.  Operation SN 222C was further postponed due to bad weather and they continued S F patrol.

 

 

Friday, 24th September 1943

 

SABRE left Lough Foyle at 1600 for Scapa where she arrived the following morning.

 

 

Saturday, 25th September 1943

 

SABRE left Scapa at 1700 for Skaalefiord where she arrived the following morning for Operation S F.

 

SHIKARI docked in the floating dock at Scapa for examination of hull defects.

 

SAVAGE and SCOURGE left Skaalefiord for S F patrol.

 

 

Sunday, 26th September 1943

 

(line missing.  Information from Home Fleet W.D., q.v.)  SHIKARI left Scapa for refit and repairs at Londonderry where she arrived the following morning.

 

AMAZON left Scapa at 1900 for Rosyth for repairs to defective boiler room fans.

 

IMPULSIVE left Skaalefiord at 0300 to join R.A. (M) for Operation SN 222C.

 

SCORPION left Skaalefiord to S F patrol.

 

 

Monday, 27th September 1943

 

MAHRATTA and OBEDIENT arrived at Scapa from Operation S F.

 

OBDURATE left Scapa at 1900 for Hull where she arrived the next day for refit.

 

 

Tuesday, 28th September 1943

 

OPPORTUNE left Londonderry at 0800 for Scapa where she arrived the same night.

 

ROCKET and HARDY arrived at Scapa at noon detached from R.A. (M) screen.

 

IMPULSIVE arrived at Scapa at 1900.

 

 

Wednesday, 29th September 1943

 

SAVAGE, SCORPION, and SCOURGE left S F Patrol and arrived Skaalefiord at noon.

 

MAGPIE arrived at Scapa at 0800 for working up gunnery practices.

 

Captain (D) Seventeenth Destroyer Flotilla in ONSLOW with OBEDIENT, VENUS, STORD, MATCHLESS, MAHRATTA, and HARDY left Scapa at 0800 for Gibraltar where they arrived on the 4th October.

 

SARDONYX left Scapa at 1900 for Skaalefiord for Operation S F and arrived next morning.

 

IMPULSIVE left Scapa at 1900 for Hvalfiord where she arrived at 1300 on 1st October.

 

MILNE (Captain (D) Third Destroyer Flotilla) left Hull for Scapa at 1900 on completion of refit.  She arrived next day.

 

SEAGULL left Humber at 2000 on completion of refit for Scapa where she arrived on the forenoon of the 1st.

 

 

Thursday, 30th September 1943

 

SPEEDWELL left Rosyth at 0200 for Scapa where she arrived the same afternoon.

 

SABRE left Skaalefiord at 1500 for Rosyth where she arrived at 1600 next day.  SABRE has been allocated to VERNON M/S at Port Edgar for special trials in connection with counter measures again acoustic homing torpedoes.

 

 


 

 

HOME FLEET DESTROYER COMMAND WAR DIARY

 

 

OCTOBER 1943

 

 

Friday, 1st October 1943

 

MIDDLETON left Hvalfiord at 1800 for Scapa where she arrived at 0800 on the 3rd.

 

ONSLAUGHT, IROQUOIS, and HURON left Scapa at 1800 for Skaalefiord where they arrived next morning.  After fuelling they left at 1400 for North Russia to carry out Operation LOADER which had as its object the passage of personnel and important stores to Kola Inlet.  They arrived safely and without incident on the 6th October.

 

 

Saturday, 2nd October 1943

 

Commander in Chief, Home Fleet in DUKE OF YORK, Vice Admiral, Second in Command Home Fleet in ANSON, Commander Task Group 121 in USS RANGER, Rear Admiral Commanding Tenth Cruiser Squadron in BELFAST with USS TUSCALOOSA and destroyer escort MILNE (Captain (D) Third Destroyer Flotilla),  OPPORTUNE, VIGILANT, TEAZER, United States Ships FORREST, CORRY, HOBSON, FITCH, and CAPPS left Scapa at 1200 for Operation LEADER which had as its object an air strike against shipping the leads of Bodo on the Norwegian coast.  They returned to Scapa on the morning of 6th October after successful completion of the Operation.

 

Rear Admiral Commanding First Cruiser Squadron in LONDON with USS AUGUSTA and IMPULSIVE left Hvalfiord at 1100 and SAVAGE, SCORPION, and SCOURGE having left S F Patrol at 0400 arrived Skaalefiord at noon, fuelled and sailed at 2300 to take part in Operation LEADER.

 

ROCKET completed working up and left Scapa at 1500 for Greenock where she arrived the following forenoon.

 

 

Sunday, 3rd October 1943

 

Captain (D) Seventeenth Destroyer Flotilla in ONSLOW with VENUS, OBEDIENT, MAHRATTA, HARDY, MATCHLESS,  and HNorMS STORD arrived at Gibraltar at 1800.

  

 

Monday, 4th October 1943

 

SARDONYX who had been engaged in Operation S F left Skaalefiord for Londonderry  where she arrived at noon on the 5th.

 

At 0100, Force X, operating in the English Channel under the orders of Commander in Chief, Plymouth, consisted of LIMBOURNE (Senior Officer), WENSLEYDALE, TANATSIDE, ULSTER, and GRENVILLE, intercepted five enemy destroyers in position 270 degrees Triagos 10 miles.  In the ensuing action in which the enemy retired at high speed, GRENVILLE and ULSTER both obtained hits on the enemy causing fires.  GRENVILLE and ULSTER each sustained hits and a few casualties including one killed in each destroyer.

 

 

Tuesday, 5th October 1943

 

SAVAGE, SCORPION, and SCOURGE arrived Skaalefiord at 1600 from Operation LEADER.

 

Rear Admiral (A) in ILLUSTRIOUS with FORMIDABLE, VALIANT and UNICORN escorted by ONSLOW (Captain (D) Seventeenth Destroyer Flotilla), MAHRATTA, OBEDIENT, MATCHLESS, VENUS, HARDY,  HNorMS STORD, and INGLEFIELD left Gibraltar p.m. for the United Kingdom.

 

At 1820 on the next day, ILLUSTRIOUS and FORMIDABLE escorted by INGLEFIELD, OBEDIENT, HNorMS STORD and VENUS were ordered to return to Gibraltar where they arrived the following day.

 

MATCHLESS broke down on the 7th in position 41-15N, 15-55W with serious condenser trouble.  MAHRATTA remained standing by.  At 0100 on 8th MAHRATTA reported MATCHLESS completely recovered and proceeding at 24 knows.  They joined up with VALIANT and escorted her to Plymouth where they arrived on the 10th at 1500.  UNICORN escorted by ONSLOW and HARDY arrived at the Clyde at 1100 on the 10th.  HARDY left Greenock at 1500 and proceeded to Scapa where she arrived the following afternoon.

 

 

Wednesday, 6th October 1943

 

Commander in Chief, Home Fleet in DUKE OF YORK escorted by OPPORTUNE and TEAZER left Scapa at 2000 for Rosyth where they arrived the following morning.  OPPORTUNE proceeded to Hull to refit where she arrived at 1600 on the 7th and TEAZER returned to Scapa, arriving at the same time.

 

SAVAGE left Skaalefiord at 1600 for Scapa where she arrived at 0800 next day.

 

ONSLAUGHT, HMC Ships IROQUOIS and HURON engaged on Operation LOADER left North Russia at 2200 for Seidisfiord where they arrived on the evening of 10th October.

 

 

Thursday, 7th October 1943

 

SAVAGE and US Destroyers FORREST, CAPPS, and HOBSON left Scapa at 2000 for Gibraltar where they arrived on 12th October.

 

 

Friday, 8th October 1943

 

At 0606 O.R.P ORKAN operating with the 10th Escort Group, was hit by a torpedo and sank in approximate position 56-30N, 26-23W.  One officer and forty three ratings survivors were picked up by MUSKETEER.

 

SAUMAREZ left the Humber at 1600 and arrived at Scapa at noon the next day, on completion of fitting Type 272.

 

HARRIER (Senior Officer, First Minesweeping Flotilla) arrived at Scapa at 0800.  GLEANER left Scapa at 1600 to refit at Tilbury where she arrived at 0900 on the 14th October.

 

It was decided that, owing the increasing deficiency in strength of destroyers at present with the Home Fleet, Operation S F could no longer be undertaken by destroyers.  SCORPION and SCOURGE left Skaalefiord at 2200 for Scapa where they arrived at 1000 the next day.

 

 

Saturday, 9th October 1943

 

HMCS HAIDA docked in the floating dock at Scapa.

 

BRISSENDEN left Liverpool at 1100 for Scapa on completion of repairs and arrived at Scapa at 1400 on the 11th October.

 

SPEEDWELL left Scapa at noon for Hvalfiord where she arrived at noon on the 12th.

 

SCORPION left Scapa at 2000 for Rosyth to boiler clean, where she arrived at 0600 next morning.

 

 

Sunday, 10th October 1943

 

TYNE, escorted by JANUS, SCOURGE, and MIDDLETON left Scapa at 0800 for Greenock.  JANUS was detached from the screen off Cape Wrath and returned to Scapa where she arrived the same evening.  TYNE arrived in the Clyde at 1700 the next day and proceeded up river on the 12th to Govan for docking and short refit.  SCOURGE commenced boiler cleaning at Greenock.

 

Rear Admiral (D) and Operational Staff of the Home Fleet Destroyers transferred temporarily in the absence of TYNE to the old A.C.O.S. Officer Block at Lyness.  The flag of Rear Admiral (D) being hoisted in DUNLUCE CASTLE.

 

 

Monday, 11th October 1943

 

ONSLAUGHT, IROQUOIS and HURON left Skaalefiord at 0600 and arrived at Scapa at 1700, having returned from Kola Inlet.

 

MAHRATTA left Plymouth at 1800 for Scapa where she arrived at 0900 on the 13th.

 

HMCS HURON left Scapa at 1800 for Rosyth to boiler clean where she arrived the following morning.

 

 

Tuesday, 12th October 1943

 

ORWELL and ORIBI arrived at Scapa at 1100 having returned from Support Group operations with the Western Approaches Command.  ORWELL entered to floating dock at Scapa.

 

HMIS KISTNA and MAGPIE left Scapa at 1200 on completion of working up practices for Londonderry where they arrived the following day.

 

MIDDLETON left Greenock at 1900 for Scapa where she arrived the next afternoon.

 

 

Wednesday, 13th October 1943

 

MUSKETEER arrived at Scapa at 0800 having returned from Support Group Operations (Senior Officer, 10th Support Group) with the Western Approaches Command.

 

Rear Admiral (A) in ILLUSTRIOUS, FORMIDABLE, KING GEORGE V, and HOWE escorted by SAVAGE, USS FORREST, CAPPS, HOBSON, HNorMS STORD, OBEDIENT, and INGLEFIELD left Gibraltar at noon for the United Kingdom.

 

 

Thursday, 14th October 1943

 

ASHANTI left Sheerness at 0700 on completion of refit for Scapa where she arrived at 1300 on the 15th for working up practices.

 

ORWELL undocked from the floating dock at Scapa.

 

ONSLAUGHT, ORWELL, ORIBI, and USS FITCH left Scapa at 2000 for Seidisfiord where they arrived at 1100 on the 16th to take part in Operation F Q.

 

Vice Admiral, Second in Command, Home Fleet in ANSON with NORFOLK, HAIDA, VIGILANT, IROQUOIS, HARDY, JANUS, and USS CORRY left Scapa at 2200 for Akureyri for Operation F Q.

 

 

Friday, 15th October 1943

 

MIDDLETON left Scapa at 1900 for Hvalfiord where she arrived at 1300 on the 17th.

 

 

Saturday, 16th October 1943

 

URCHIN arrived at Scapa at 0800 for working up practices on first commissioning.

 

SCORPION left Rosyth at 1900 on completion of boiler cleaning for Scapa where she arrived the following morning.

 

Vice Admiral, Second in Command Home Fleet in ANSON with NORFOLK, VIGILANT, HAIDA, IROQUOIS, and USS RANGER (Commander Task Group 121) with USS CORRY, HM Ships HARDY and JANUS arrived at Akureyri at 2100.

 

 

Sunday, 17th October 1943

 

USS TUSCALOOSA with ONSLAUGHT, ORIBI, ORWELL, and USS FITCH left Seidisfiord at 0200 for Operation F Q which had as its object the carrying of relief personnel and stores to the Norwegian force at Spitzbergen.

 

Captain (D) Seventeenth Destroyer Flotilla in ONSLOW left Greenock at 1000 for Scapa where they arrived the following day.

 

Vice Admiral, Second in Command, Home Fleet in ANSON with USS RANGER and NORFOLK left Akureyri at 1500 with destroyer escort of VIGILANT, HAIDA, IROQUOIS, CORRY, HARDY, and JANUS for covering operations for operation F Q.

 

HARRIER (Senior Officer, First Minesweeping Flotilla) and SEAGULL left Scapa at 1900 for Seidisfiord where they arrived at 1300 on the 20th.

 

 

Monday, 18th October 1943

 

SALAMANDER left Scapa at 1000 for the Tyne to refit.

 

HOWE escorted by OBEDIENT, SAVAGE, and HNorMS STORD arrived at Scapa at 1400.

 

Rear Admiral (A) in ILLUSTRIOUS with FORMIDABLE escorted by VENUS and INGLEFIELD arrived in the Clyde at 1700.

 

SCOURGE left Greenock at 1800 for Scapa on completion of boiler cleaning and arrived the next morning.

 

Captain (D) Third Destroyer Flotilla in MILNE left Scapa at 1600 for Seidisfiord where they arrived the following evening.

 

BRISSENDEN left Scapa at 2200 to rendezvous with STRIKE off 25 Buoy the following morning.  They met at 0700 and proceeded.  When off Cape Wrath BRISSENDEN was detached and returned to Scapa where she arrived at 2200 next day.

 

Rear Admiral, Commanding First Cruiser Squadron in LONDON with AUGUSTA and MIDDLETON left Hvalfiord for Akureyri where they arrived at 2300 on the 19th.

 

USS HOBSON arrived at Londonderry for boiler cleaning.

 

 

Tuesday,  19th October 1943

 

KING GEORGE V escorted by FORREST and CAPPS arrived at Rosyth at 0700.

 

Whilst engaged on Operation F Q, HMS ONSLAUGHT, proceeding up Ice Fiord, Spitzbergen obtained an asdic contact.  During subsequent investigation it was classified as non submarine being similar to ice echoes obtained earlier during the day and ice was seen on the bearing.  At 1554 a bump was felt on the Asdic dome followed by a bump aft and at 1555 a U-boat surfaced astern.  Fire was opened and hits by pom pom and Oerlikon were seen on the target and the U-boat submerged a few seconds later.  ONSLAUGHT’s asdic being out of action contact could not be regained and a search by ORWELL and FINCH proved unavailing.

 

DUKE OF YORK escorted by FORREST and CAPPS left Rosyth at 2000 for Scapa where they arrived the next day.

 

HURON left Rosyth on completion of boiler cleaning and arrived at Scapa the following morning.

 

 

Wednesday, 20th October 1943

 

OBEDIENT left Scapa at 0500 to rendezvous with RESOLUTION off Eyebroughy buoy and provided escort to the vicinity of Cape Wrath thence returning to Scapa on the 21st.

 

IMPULSIVE left Hvalfiord at 1000 for Skaalefiord where arrived the following afternoon,

 

MATCHLESS left Plymouth at 1400 for Scapa where she arrived at 0800 on the 22nd.

 

 

Thursday, 21st October 1943

 

TERMAGANT arrived at Scapa at 1000 for working up practices on first commissioning.

 

BRISSENDEN was docked during the afternoon for repairs to hull damage sustained when dragging across ROYALIST’s stern when anchored in the Flow.

 

HURON left Scapa at 1900 for Leith for repairs to stem damage sustained when proceeded alongside the duty oiler.  HURON arrived at Leith at 0800 next day.

 

 

Friday, 22nd October 1943

 

IMPULSIVE left Skaalefiord at 0300 to join Vice Admiral, Second in Command Home Fleet in ANSON with NORFOLK, VIGILANT, HAIDA, IROQUOIS, RANGER (Commander Task Group 121), CORRY, JANUS, HARDY, and IMPULSIVE arrived at Scapa at 2000.

 

USS TUSCALOOSA, ONSLAUGHT, ORIBI, ORWELL, and FITCH arrived at Seidisfiord at 1000.  ORIBI and ORWELL left Seidisfiord at 2300 and arrived at Scapa on the morning of the 24th.

 

 

Saturday, 23rd October 1943

 

JANUS and HARDY left Scapa at 2000 for Rosyth where they arrived at 0700 next day for boiler cleaning.

 

ONSLAUGHT and FITCH left Seidisfiord at 0600 for Scapa where they arrived the next morning.

 

Captain (D), Third Destroyer Flotilla in MILNE left Seidisfiord at 1400 for Skaalefiord where they arrived the next morning.

 

SAVAGE, SCORPION, SCOURGE, SAUMAREZ, MUSKETEER, MAHRATTA, and MATCHLESS left Scapa at 2000 for Skaalefiord where they arrived the following morning.

 

 

Sunday, 24th October 1943

 

USS HOBSON left Londonderry at 1800 for Scapa where she arrived the following afternoon.

 

USS RANGER, escorted by FORREST and CORRY, left Scapa at 200 for Rosyth where they arrived the next morning.

 

OBEDIENT and TEAZER left Scapa at 2000 for Gibraltar where they arrived at 0800 on the 30th.  On passage when in position approximately 41 1/2N, 15W TEAZER obtained an asdic contact at 1825 on 26 October.  Contact was classified as “submarine” and five attacks carried out.  OBEDIENT subsequently attacked two contacts at about 2100.  Both destroyers reported that torpedo H.E. was heard.  At 2330 the hunt was abandoned and they continued to Gibraltar.

 

Captain (D), Third Destroyer Flotilla in MILNE with SAVAGE, SCOURGE, SCORPION, SAUMAREZ, MUSKETEER, MAHRATTA, and MATCHLESS  left Skaalefiord at 2300 for the Kola Inlet on Operation F R.  They arrived at 1700 on 28th October.

 

 

Monday, 25th October 1943

 

HAIDA and VIGILANT left Scapa at 0500 to rendezvous with FORMIDABLE at 0900 off Cape Wrath and escort her to Scapa where they arrived at 1300.

 

HUSSAR arrived at Scapa at 0800.

 

ORWELL and ORIBI left Scapa at noon for Greenock where they arrived at 0800 next day to boiler clean.

 

MIDDLETON left Akureyri at 1500 for Hvalfiord where she arrived at 0500 on the following morning.

 

VENUS left Greenock at 1600 for Scapa where she arrived the following day.

 

 

Tuesday, 26th October 1943

 

HUSSAR left Scapa at 0700 for Aberdeen to boiler clean.

 

 

Wednesday, 27th October 1943

 

IROQUOIS and IMPULSIVE left Scapa at 2200 to rendezvous with TYNE off the Clyde Light Vessel and escort to Scapa.  The rendezvous was made at 2000 on the 28th and they arrived at Scapa at 1700 on 30 October.

 

 

Thursday, 28th October 1943

 

BRISSENDEN undocked from the floating dock at Scapa.

 

 

Friday, 29th October 1943

 

INGLEFIELD left Greenock for Gibraltar.

 

ONSLAUGHT docked in the floating dock at Scapa for changing propellers and asdic dome.

 

Vice Admiral, Second in Command Home Fleet in ANSON with FORMIDABLE and JAMAICA screened by ONSLOW (Captain (D) Seventeenth Destroyer Flotilla, VENUS, HAIDA, HNorMS STORD, US ships CAPPS and HOBSON left Scapa at 1300 for Akureyri for covering operations during operation F S.

 

FORREST and CORRY left Rosyth at 1700 for Scapa where they arrived at 0800 next morning.

 

HURON left Leith at 1900 for Scapa, on completion of repairs, and arrived the following morning.

 

 

Saturday, 30th October 1943

 

HMIS CAUVERY arrived at Scapa at 0800 for working up practices on first commissioning.

 

MIDDLETON left Hvalfiord for Akureyri where she arrived the same night.

 

HARDY and JANUS left Rosyth at 1800 for Scapa where they arrived the following day at 0800.

 

VIGILANT left Scapa at 1900 for Rosyth to boiler clean where she arrived the following morning.

 

NELSON and RODNEY escorted by OBEDIENT, TEAZER, ROCKET, OFFA, and TARTAR left Gibraltar for the United Kingdom.

 

 

Sunday, 31st October 1943

 

SPEEDWELL arrived at Scapa at 1600.

 

 

 


 

 

HOME FLEET DESTROYER COMMAND WAR DIARY

 

 

NOVEMBER 1943

 

 

Monday, 1st November 1943

 

Convoy RA 54 A, consisting of thirteen ships, left Archangel during the forenoon escorted by WESTCOTT, EGLANTINE, JASON, and BRITOMART as through close escort and a local escort of two Russian destroyers, HARRIER (Senior Officer, First Minesweeping Flotilla) and SEAGULL until dusk on the following day.

 

 

Tuesday, 2nd November 1943

 

ORWELL and ORIBI left Greenock at 1300 for Scapa where they arrived the following forenoon.

 

Vice Admiral, Second in Command, Home Fleet and Force 2 left Akureyri at 1000 for covering operations in connection with operation F S.

 

Captain (D) Third Destroyer Flotilla in MILNE with MUSKETEER, MAHRATTA, MATCHLESS, SAVAGE, SCOURGE, SCORPION, and SAUMAREZ left Vaenga Bay at 1600 and met convoy RA 54 A at 1300 on the next day.

 

 

Wednesday, 3rd November 1943

 

No events or movements of importance.

 

 

Thursday, 4th November 1943

 

HALCYON left the Tees on completion of refit at 0900 and arrived at Scapa the following afternoon.

 

USS FORREST and CORRY left Scapa for Rosyth where they rendezvoused with USS RANGER (Commander, Task Group 121) at 1900 and escorted her to Scapa arriving the next day.

 

IMPULSIVE left Scapa at 2000 for Rosyth to boiler clean and arrived early next morning.

 

KEMPENFELT and TUSCAN arrived at Scapa at 0900 for working up practices on first commissioning.

 

 

Friday, 5th November 1943

 

BRISSENDEN left Scapa at 0900 and arrived Hvalfiord at noon on the 7th and left for Seidisfiord at 2300 the same day.

 

SPEEDWELL and HALCYON left Scapa at 1600 for Seidisfiord where they arrived at 0800 on the 8th November.

 

HURON and HARDY left Scapa at 1700 to rendezvous with NELSON off Cape Wrath at 2100 and escort her to Rosyth.  They arrived of May Island at 1100 next day and the destroyers returned to Scapa where they arrived at 2000 on 6 November.

 

 

Saturday, 6th November 1943

 

OFFA, TARTAR, and OBEDIENT arrived at Scapa at 0900.  TARTAR left Scapa at 2100 for Devonport to refit where she arrived at 1300 on the 8th.

 

VIGILANT left Rosyth at 1700 on completion  of boiler cleaning and arrived at Scapa the following morning.

 

 

Sunday, 7th November 1943

 

VIRAGO left Rosyth at 1200 and arrived at Scapa at 0800 next day for working up practices on first commissioning.

 

MUSKETEER and MATCHLESS were detached from the escort of convoy RA 54 A and proceeded to Seidisfiord where they arrived on the evening of the following day.

 

MIDDLETON left Akureyri at 1800 and arrived Seidisfiord next afternoon.

 

 

Monday, 8th November 1943

 

TENACIOUS arrived at Scapa at 0800 for working up practices on first commissioning.

 

HUSSAR left Aberdeen at 0800 and arrived at Scapa the same evening.

 

ORIBI and URCHIN escorting RENOWN and QUEEN ELIZABETH left Scapa at 1300.  URCHIN was detached off Cape Wrath and returned to Scapa arriving the same evening.  ORIBI continued to Plymouth where they arrived at 2000 on the 10th.

 

Vice Admiral, Second in Command Home Fleet in ANSON with FORMIDABLE, JAMAICA, ONSLOW (Captain (D) Seventeenth Destroyer Flotilla). HAIDA, VENUS, HNorMS STORD, US ships CAPPS and HOBSON arrived at Scapa at 1130 from covering operation of Operation F S.

 

HNorMS STORD left Scapa at 2100 for Rosyth to boiler clean where she arrived the next morning.

 

BRISSENDEN arrived at Seidisfiord during the evening.

 

 

Tuesday, 9th November 1943

 

Force 4, consisting of SPEEDWELL, HALCYON, MIDDLETON, and BRISSENDEN and WESTCOTT (who had been sent on ahead of convoy RA 43 A to fuel and report their ETA) left Seidisfiord at 2300 and rendezvoused with convoy RA 54 A off Langanes Point at 0630 next day.  MILNE (Captain (D) Third Destroyer Flotilla),  MAHRATTA, SAVAGE, SCORPION, SCOURGE, and SAUMAREZ having turned over the escort to Force 4 left the convoy and proceeded to Seidisfiord where they arrived during the forenoon of 10th November.

 

 

Wednesday, 10th November 1943

 

SAVAGE, MUSKETEER, and MATCHLESS left Seidisfiord at noon and arrived at Scapa at 1600 on the following day.

 

Captain (D) Third Destroyer Flotilla in MILNE with MAHRATTA, SAUMAREZ, SCOURGE, and SCORPION left Seidisfiord at 1500 and arrived at Scapa at 1800 next day.

 

 

Thursday, 11th November 1943

 

USS CAPPS entered the floating dock at Scapa to clear wire from propellers as a result of fouling Switha Gate.

 

 

Friday, 12th November 1943

 

SAVAGE left Scapa at 0400 for Rosyth for boiler cleaning where she arrived the same afternoon.

 

OFFA left Scapa at 1300 for refit at Hull where she arrived at 0900 next day.

 

IMPULSIVE left Rosyth at 1700 and arrived at Scapa at 0800 next day.

 

VENUS and ASHANTI left Scapa at 2100 escorting FORMIDABLE to Cape Wrath and returned to Scapa on being detached.

 

 

Saturday, 13th November 1943

 

JASON and BRITOMART arrived at Scapa at 0200 and left at 1700 to refit at Portsmouth and Plymouth respectively.  BRITOMART arrived at Plymouth at noon on the 16th  and JASON arrived the same evening.

 

HALYCON and SPEEDWELL arrived at Scapa at 0800.

 

BRISSENDEN arrived at Loch Ewe during the afternoon.

 

MIDDLETON proceeded to Greenock to boiler clean where she arrived at noon next day.

 

VIGILANT and HARDY left Scapa at 1400 to rendezvous with KING GEORGE V off Rosyth at 0030 next day.  They proceeded to Scapa where they arrived at 1800 on the 14th.

 

SPEEDWELL left Scapa at 2200 for Aberdeen to boiler clean.

 

USS CAPPS undocked from floating dock at Scapa.

 

MUSKETEER docked in the floating dock at Scapa for examination of hull as a result of fouling Switha Gate Vessel when entering on November 11th.

 

 

Sunday, 14th November 1943

 

Captain (D), Seventeenth Destroyer Flotilla in ONSLOW with TERMAGANT left Scapa at 0800 for Loch Ewe where they arrived at 1600 same day.

 

HALCYON left Scapa at 0500 for Loch Ewe where she arrived the same afternoon.

 

FS RICHELIEU escorted by INGLEFIELD, PIORUN, and TUMULT left Oran at 1000 for Scapa.  INGLEFIELD was detached after crossing longitude 10W.

 

ORIBI left Plymouth at 0900 to rendezvous with RICHELIEU in Latitude 43N when TUMULT was detached to return to the Mediterranean.

 

ORP PIORUN and HMS ORIBI were detached subsequently to Plymouth, after passing latitude 51N and arrived at Plymouth on 19th November.

 

 

Monday, 15th November 1943

 

ONSLAUGHT with HAIDA, IROQUOIS, HURON, ORWELL, OBEDIENT, and IMPULSIVE left Scapa at 1800 for Seidisfiord where they arrived at 1000 on the 17th November.

 

HNorMS STORD left Rosyth at 1700 for Scapa and arrived at 0900 on the 16th.

 

OBDURATE left the Humber at 1400 on completion of refit and arrived at Scapa the following afternoon.

 

 

Tuesday, 16th November 1943

 

JANUS left Scapa at 1700 for Plymouth, having completing working up practices and Type 293 special trials.

 

Vice Admiral, Second in Command Home Fleet, in ANSON escorted by FORREST, CORRY, HOBSON, and FITCH left Scapa during the evening for Akureyri where they arrived on the evening of the 18th.

 

 

Wednesday, 17th November 1943

 

MUSKETEER undocked.

 

URCHIN left Scapa at 1500 for Greenock, having completing working up practices.

 

Captain (D) Seventeenth Destroyer Flotilla in ONSLOW arrived at Seidisfiord at 1000 from Loch Ewe.

 

ONSALUGHT left Seidisfiord at 1800 with five Russian M.L.s in company to join convoy JS 54 A.

 

Captain (D) Seventeenth Destroyer Flotilla in ONSLOW with remainder of destroyer escort OBEDIENT, ORWELL, IMPULSIVE, IROQUOIS, HAIDA, and HURON left Seidisfiord at 2300 to join convoy JW 54 A which had sailed from Loch Ewe on the afternoon of the 15th.  Rendezvous was made at 1000 next morning and the local destroyer escort was detached.  ORP BURZA to Loch Ewe, TERMAGANT to Scapa where she arrived at 0800 on the 20th and BRISSENDEN to Seidisfiord, where she arrived p.m. on the 18th.

 

 

Thursday, 18th November 1943

 

VIGILANT docked in the floating dock at Scapa.

 

At 2015 OBEDIENT reported to Captain (D) Seventeenth Destroyer Flotilla that his steering gear was defective and beyond the capacity of the ship’s staff to repair.OBEDIENT was ordered to leave the escort and return to Seidisfiord where she arrived at 1900 on the following day.

 

 

Friday, 19th November 1943

 

SAVAGE left Rosyth at 0730 for Scapa where she arrived the next morning.

 

BRISSENDEN left Seidisfiord at 1500 for Hvalfiord.

 

Vice Admiral, Second in Command Home Fleet in ANSON with USS TUSCALOOSA, FORREST, CORRY, HOBSON, and FITCH left Akureyri at 1700 for covering operating for Operation F T.

 

MUSKETEER and SCOURGE left Scapa at 2100 to rendezvous with FS RICHELIEU off the Butt of Lewis at 0300 the next day and escorted her to Scapa where they arrived at 0900 on the 20th.

 

 

Saturday, 20th November 1943

 

VIGILANT undocked.

 

BEAGLE and MIDDLETON left Greenock at 1600 for Loch Ewe where they arrived at 1100 on the following forenoon.

 

 

Sunday, 21st November 1943

 

SAUMAREZ and HALCYON left Scapa during the morning for Loch Ewe where they arrived at 1600 the same day.

 

MAHRATTA left Scapa at 1700 for Hull to refit where she arrived at noon next day.

 

 

Monday, 22nd November 1943

 

OBEDIENT left Seidisfiord at 1100, temporary repairing having been effected to her steering gear and arrived Scapa at noon next day.

 

SAUMAREZ left Loch Ewe during the evening for Seidisfiord where she arrived on the afternoon of the 24th.

 

VENUS, HARDY, SCOURGE, VIGILANT, SAVAGE, SCORPION, and STORD left Scapa at 1600 for Seidisfiord where they arrived p.m. on the 24th.

 

SPEEDWELL, MIDDLETON, and HALCYON left Loch Ewe during the afternoon, escorting convoy JW 54 B.

 

Commander, Task Group 121 in RANGER with AUGUSTA escorted by MUSKETEER, MATCHLESS, ASHANTI, OBDURATE, and CAPPS left Scapa at 1500 for Hvalfiord.

 

MUSKETEER, MATCHLESS, ASHANTI, and OBDURATE were detached and proceeded to Akureyri where they arrived at 1300 on the 25th.

 

 

Tuesday, 23rd November 1943

 

BRISSENDEN left Hvalfiord at 1500 for Scapa where she arrived at 1600 on the 24th.

 

 

Wednesday, 24th November 1943

 

H.R.H. Regent of Iraq visited HMS TYNE from 1030 to 1130 and inspected the ship.  He embarked in VIRAGO at 1130 for passage to Scapa Bay whence he proceeded to the R.N.A.S. Hatston.

 

USS FORREST, CORRY, HOBSON, and FITCH were detached from Vice Admiral, Second in Command Home Fleet in ANSON off Akureyri on return from covering operations and proceeded to Hvalfiord where they arrived at noon the next day.

 

OPPORTUNE left the Humber at 1700 on completion of refit and arrived at Scapa at 2300 on the 25th.

 

Captain (D) Seventeenth Destroyer Flotilla in ONSLOW and destroyer escort of JW 54 A arrived at Kola Inlet at 1900.

 

 

Thursday, 25th November 1943

 

ORP PIORUN left Plymouth at 1400 for the Clyde to refit.

 

SAUMAREZ (Senior Officer) with SAVAGE, SCORPION, SCOURGE, STORD, VENUS, VIGILANT, and HARDY left Seidisfiord at 0700 to rendezvous with convoy JW 54 B.  The convoy was met at 0700 the next day and local escort of SALADIN, SKATE, and MIDDLETON detached to Seidisfiord where they arrived at 2100.  SPEEDWELL was detached to Scapa.  After fuelling on the 26th, MIDDLETON proceeded to Akureyri where she arrived at 1000 on the 27th.

 

 

Friday, 26th November 1943

 

METEOR left the Tyne at 1000 on completion of refit and arrive at Scapa at 0700 next morning.

 

 

Saturday, 27th November 1943

 

At 0246, ORIBI operating with the Plymouth Command was proceeding with ATHABASKAN and JANUS in company when the same into collision with LCT (L) 178 in position 49-36N 7-40W.  ORIBI remained standing by the damaged LCR which was towed into Plymouth after calling at Falmouth at 1600 the same day.  OBIRI sustained some hull damage.

 

Captain (D) Seventeenth Destroyer Flotilla in ONSLOW with IROQUOIS, HAIDA, HURON, ONSLAUGHT, ORWELL, and IMPULSIVE left Kola Inlet at 1300 to rendezvous with convoy RA 54 B in position 70-25N, 42-50E at 1000 next day.

 

 

Sunday, 28th November 1943

 

MIDDLETON left Akureyri for Scapa where she arrived at 0100 on the 30th.

 

Vice Admiral, Second in Command, Home Fleet in ANSON with BELFAST, MUSKETEER, ASHANTI, OBDURATE, and MATCHLESS left Akureyri at 1800 for covering operations in connection with Operation F T.

 

 

Monday, 29th November 1943

 

At 0600 MATCHLESS was detached to Seidisfiord with condenser trouble.  During the forenoon a strong North Easterly gale sprung up and at 1500 Vice Admiral, Second in Command Home Fleet slipped his screen and proceeded ahead in ANSON with BELFAST towards the Battle fleet covering position.  MUSKETEER, ASHANTI, and OBDURATE caught up again at 1100 on December 1st.

 

SPEEDWELL arrived at Scapa.

 

 

Tuesday, 30th November 1943

 

CAUVERY left Scapa at noon to rendezvous with AMSTERDAM and PRAGUE off Aberdeen at 1700 and escort to Lerwick.

 

 


 

 

HOME FLEET DESTROYER COMMAND WAR DIARY

 

 

DECEMBER 1943

 

Wednesday, 1st December 1943

 

At 0500 INCONSTANT, escorting convoy RA 54 B sighted and attacked a U-boat in position approximately 74N, 18 1/2E.  The convoy was not attacked.

 

The White Sea section of convoy JW 54 B of ten ships was detached at noon escorted by BEAGLE, HALCYON, RHODODENDRON, POPPY, and DIANELLA.

 

OPPORTUNE and METEOR sailed from Scapa at join RENOWN in Pentland Firth and escort to Rosyth where they arrived at noon next day.  Destroyers returned to Scapa escorting NELSON where they arrived at 0800 on the 3rd.

 

 

Thursday, 2nd December 1943

 

SAUMAREZ (Senior Officer) with SCOURGE, SCORPION, SAVAGE, STORD, HARY, VENUS, and VIGILANT arrived at Kola Inlet with convoy JW 54 B and entered at 1300.

 

OBEDIENT left Scapa at 1700 for the Tyne for repairs and refit.  She arrived the following morning.

 

CAUVERY arrived Scapa during the afternoon.

 

 

Friday, 3rd December 1943

 

ORIBI commenced refitting at Falmouth.

 

SAUMAREZ, SCOURGE, SCORPION, STORD, SAVAGE, HARDY, VENUS, and VIGILANT left Kola Inlet at 1400 for Scapa where they arrived at 1000 on the 8th.

 

MIDDLETON and BRISSENDEN left Scapa at 1700 for Seidisfiord where they arrived at noon on the 5th.

 

IROQUOIS was detached from escort of convoy RA 54 B and sent on ahead to Seidisfiord where she arrived at 1500 next day.

 

 

Saturday, 4th December 1943

 

Vice Admiral, Second in Command Home Fleet in ANSON with MUSKETEER, ASHANTI, and OBDURATE arrived at Scapa at 0900 from covering operations.

 

MATCHLESS arrived Scapa at 1300.

 

ASHANTI left Scapa at 2000 for Rosyth to boiler clean where she arrived the following morning.

 

 

Sunday, 5th December 1943

 

SALADIN and SKATE left Seidisfiord at 0200 and MIDDLETON and BRISSENDEN left at 1500 to take over escort of convoy RA 54 B.  On arrival the Home Fleet Destroyer escorts were detached and proceeded to Seidisfiord to fuel, where they arrived the same day.

 

 

Monday, 6th December 1943

 

Captain (D) Seventeenth Destroyer Flotilla in ONSLOW with ONSLAUGHT, ORWELL, HAIDA, IROQUOIS, HURON, and IMPULSIVE left Seidisfiord during the morning and proceeded to Scapa where they arrived at 1100 the next forenoon.

 

CAUVERY left Scapa on completion of working up practices.

 

TERMAGANT and KEMPENFELT completed working up practices.

 

 

Tuesday, 7th December 1943

 

KING GEORGE V escorted by OBDURATE, TERMAGANT, and KEMPENFELT left Scapa at 0700 for Gibraltar. Destroyer screen were relived in approximately latitude 43N, 20W at 0900 and proceeded to Horta Azores, where they arrived on 11 December at 1400.

 

Vice Admiral Second in Command Home Fleet in ANSON with OPPORTUNE and TENACIOUS left Scapa at 2200 for Rosyth where they arrived the following morning.  The destroyers returned to Scapa.

 

 

Wednesday, 8th December 1943

 

MIDDLETON and BRISSENDEN arrived Scapa at 2100 from convoy escort duty.

 

 

Thursday, 9th December 1943

 

Senior Officer, First Minesweeping Flotilla in HARRIER arrived at Scapa.

 

HURON and SCOURGE left Scapa at 1400 to the Clyde for boiler cleaning where they arrived the following day.

 

BRISSENDEN left Scapa at 1700 to join the Plymouth Command.

 

 

Friday, 10th December 1943

 

MIDDLETON transferred to Orkneys and Shetlands Command.

 

ATHABASKAN arrived at Scapa having rejoined from the Plymouth Command and on completion of action damage repairs.

 

FURIOUS escorted by IROQUOIS, ORWELL, and IMPULSIVE left Scapa at 1200 to carry out exercise C P.  They returned at 1800 next day.

 

 

Saturday, 11th December 1943

 

Captain (D) Third Destroyer Flotilla in MILNE and Senior Officer, First Minesweeping Flotilla in HARRIER with SPEEDWELL left Scapa during the morning for Loch Ewe where they arrived in the afternoon.

 

ASHANTI left Rosyth during the evening on completion of boiler cleaning and arrived Scapa the following morning.

 

VIRAGO completed working up practices.

 

 

Sunday, 12th December 1943

 

SWIFT arrived at Scapa at 0900 for working up practices on first commissioning.

 

Commander in Chief Home Fleet in DUKE OF YORK with JAMAICA, SAVAGE, SAUMAREZ, SCORPION, and STORD, all forming Force 2, left Scapa at 1300 for covering operations for Operation F V.  They arrived at Kola Inlet on 16th December.

 

MUSKETEER, METEOR, MATCHLESS, OPPORTUNE, ATHABASKAN, ASHANTI, and VIRAGO left Scapa at 1700 for Skaalfiord.

 

Captain (D) Third Destroyer Flotilla in MILNE left Loch Ewe at 1700 for Skaalefiord.

 

Captain JW 55 A left Loch Ewe during the afternoon escorted by Senior Officer, First Minesweeping Flotilla in HARRIER, SPEEDWELL, and other escorts.

 

 

Monday, 13th December 1943

 

Captain (D) Third Destroyer Flotilla in MILNE with MUSKETEER, METEOR, MATCHLESS, ASHANTI, OPPORTUNE, VIRAGO, and ATHABASKAN arrived at Skaalefiord at 0900.

 

 

Tuesday, 14th December 1943

 

VERULAM arrived at Scapa at 0900 for working up practices on first commissioning.

 

HARDY left Scapa at 0600 for Rosyth where she arrived the same evening.

 

Captain (D) Third Destroyer Flotilla in MILNE with MUSKETEER, METEOR, MATCHLESS, ASHANTI, OPPORTUNE, VIRAGO, and ATHABASKAN left Skaalefiord at 0015 to rendezvous with convoy JW 55 A.  Rendezvous was made with the convoy at 1400 on the 15th December and the local escort were then detached.

 

 

Wednesday, 15th December 1943

 

No events or movement of importance.

 

 

Thursday, 16th December 1943

 

Captain (D) Twenty Sixth Destroyer Flotilla in HARDY left Rosyth at 1700 for Scapa and arrived the following morning.

 

IROQUOIS entered the floating dock at Scapa.

 

 

Friday, 17th December 1943

 

TUSCAN and TENACIOUS left Scapa on completion of working up practices for the Clyde where they arrived the following day.

 

Captain (D) Seventeenth Destroyer Flotilla in ONSLOW left Scapa during the evening for Loch Ewe and arrived 1000 next day.

 

GLEANER left Scapa for 2200 for Loch Ewe and arrived the next morning.

 

VIGILANT left Scapa at 1500 for Skaalefiord with mails for Force 2 for transit by Senior Officer, First Minesweeping Flotilla in HARRIER and a ship of the Eighteenth Minesweeping Flotilla to Akureyri.  VIGILANT arrive at Skaalefiord at 1000 next day and then returned to Scapa arriving at noon on the 19th.

 

ONSLAUGHT left Rosyth during the evening and arrived at Scapa early the following morning.

 

HURON and SCOURGE left the Clyde on completion of boiler cleaning and arrived at Scapa the following forenoon.

 

 

Saturday, 18th December 1943

 

AMETHYST arrived at Scapa at 1100 for gunnery working up practices.

 

OBDURATE, TERMAGANT, and KEMPENFELT left Horta, Azores at 1400 to rendezvous with KING GEORGE V and LONDON in approximate position 40N, 21W at noon next day and proceed to the United Kingdom.

 

Commander in Chief, Home Fleet in DUKE OF YORK with JAMAICA, SAVAGE, SAUMAREZ, SCORPION, and STORD left Kola Inlet at 0830 for covering operations for Operation F V and arrived at Akureyri at 1300 on the 21st.

 

 

Sunday, 19th December 1943

 

Convoy JW 54 B which was due to sail from Loch Ewe today was postponed 24 hours owing to heavy gale.

 

 

Monday, 20th December 1943

 

HMCS CHAUDIERE arrived at Scapa at 1000 for working up practices.

 

Captain (D) Seventeenth Destroyer Flotilla in ONSLOW left Loch Ewe during the afternoon for Skaalefiord where she arrived the next day.

 

ONSLAUGHT, ORWELL, IMPULSIVE, SCOURGE, HAIDA, IROQUOIS, and HURON left Scapa at 1700 for Skaalefiord and arrived the next morning.

 

Captain (D) Third Destroyer Flotilla in MILNE with WESTCOTT arrived Kola Inlet at 1600 having detached early from convoy JW 55 A in order to attend RA 55 A convoy conference.

 

 

Tuesday, 21st December 1943

 

IROQUOIS undocked.

 

Convoy JW 55 A and remainder of escorts arrived at Kola Inlet at 0200.  White Sea portion having proceeded the previous day.

 

 

Wednesday, 22nd December 1943

 

At 0015 Captain (D) Seventeen Destroyer Flotilla in ONSLOW with ONSLAUGHT, ORWELL, IMPULSIVE, SCOURGE, IROQUOIS, HAIDA, and HURON left Skaalefiord to rendezvous with convoy JW 55 B during the afternoon and the local escort were detached to Skaalefiord.

 

Convoy RA 55 A consisting of 23 ships escorted by Captain (D) Third Destroyer Flotilla in MILNE with MATCHLESS, MUSKETEER, METEOR, ASHANTI, ATHABASKAN, OPPORTUNE, VIRAGO, WESTCOTT, WRESTLER, BEAGLE, ACANTHUS, SEAGULL, DIANELLA, and POPPY left Kola Inlet at 1100.

 

OBDURATE was detached from KING GEORGE V screen at 0900 and proceeded to Moville to fuel, where she arrived at 1500 and later sailed for Clyde where she arrived next morning.

 

KING GEORGE V with LONDON, TERMAGANT, and KEMPENFELT arrived at Clyde at 1800.

 

VENUS docked in the floating dock at Scapa.

 

 

Thursday, 23rd December 1943

 

KING GEORGE V escorted by OBDURATE left Greenock at noon for Scapa where they arrived at 0900 next day.

 

At noon Captain (D) Seventeenth Destroyer Flotilla in ONSLOW, Senior Officer of the escort JW 55 B reported the position, course and speed of the convoy and that he was being shadowed by two Dornier 217.  At 2315 Captain (D) Seventeenth Flotilla reported that one shadowing aircraft had been in contact until 2305 and homing.

 

Commander in Chief Home Fleet in DUKE OF YORK WITH JAMAICA, SAVAGE, SAUMAREZ, SCORPION, and STORD, as Force 2, left Akureyri at 2300 to cover the passed of convoys JW 55 B and RA 55 A from surface attack.

 

 

Friday, 24th December 1943

 

VENUS undocked.

 

At 2000 Rear Admiral (D) ordered convoy RA 55 A after passing 19 degrees east to alter course to the North West and also ordered Captain (D) Third Destroyer Flotilla (Senior Officer Escort) to detach four Fleet Destroyers to join the escort of convoy JW 55 A.  MUSKETEER, MATCHLESS, OPPORTUNE, and VIRAGO were detached at 0200 on the 25th.

 

Captain (D) Seventeenth Destroyer Flotilla reported that the convoy had been shadowed from noon to 1600.

 

 

Saturday, 25th December 1943

 

MUSKETEER, MATCHLESS, OPPORTUNE, and VIRAGO joined escort of JW 55 B at noon.

 

 

Sunday, 26th December 1943

 

BATTLE OF NORTH CAPE

 

 

Click to enlarge

 

At 0319, the Admiralty signaled that the German battle cruiser SCHARNHORST was probably at sea.  At 0401 the Commander in Chief, Home Fleet diverted convoy JW 55 B to the northward.

 

At 0800, Vice Admiral Tenth Cruiser Squadron in BELFAST with NORFOLK and SHEFFIELD in company as Force 1 made radar contact with the enemy at a range of 35, 000 yards.  The SCHARNHORST was engaged and driven off and Force 1 returned on the convoy and was joined at 1024 by the 36th Division comprising MUSKETEER, MATCHLESS, OPPORTUNE, and VIRAGO.  At 1204 Force 1 regained contact with the enemy who was approaching the convoy from the north eastward; a short gun action ensued and the SCHARNHORST retired to the South East with Vice Admiral Commanding Tenth Cruiser Squadron, Force 1, and 36th Destroyer Division shadowing from astern and passing reports to the Commander in Chief Home Fleet who was steering a course to intercept.

 

The SCHARNHORST was first detected at 1617 by DUKE OF YORK’s radar at a range of 45,500 yards, bearing 020 degrees.  Fire was opened at 1650 and the enemy at once altered away to the eastward and a general chase ensued.  Destroyers were ordered to take up the most advantageous position for torpedo firing.  Throughout the chase the range steadily opened owing to SCHARNHORST’s speed.  At 1713, the four “S” class destroyers were ordered to attack with torpedoes.  By 1820 they had closed in to 12, 000 yards and at 1840 at a range of 10, 000 yards, were subject to the first of the enemy’s entire armament, but attacked were pressed home, and the two sub divisions turned in to attack from opposite sides shortly before 1900, closing the range to about 2000 and securing about five hits.  SAUMAREZ suffered damaged and a few casualties and her speed was reduced to 10 knots on the port engine only.  During the destroyer attacks, Force 2 closed rapidly and re engaged to be joined shortly by Force 1 and the 36th Division who attacked with torpedoes about 1930.  SCHARNHORST sank at 1940.  SCORPION picked up 30 survivors and MATCHLESS six.

 

Forces 1 and 2 and the 36th Division proceeded to Kola Inlet where they arrived throughout the 27th December.

 

ATHABASKAN and BEAGLE were detached from escort of RA 55 A at noon to proceed to fuel at the Faroes where they arrived at 2200 on the 29th.

 

Senior Officer, First Minesweeping Flotilla arrived at Scapa at 2000.

 

ORP BLYSKAWICA arrived at Scapa for working up practices.

 

 

Monday, 27th December 1943

 

VERULAM left Scapa at 0700 to rendezvous with RENOWN off Eyebroughy buoy at 1700 and escorted her to Scapa where they arrived next morning.

 

Senior Officer, First Minesweeping Flotilla in HARRIER left Scapa at 0900 for Grimsby where she arrived at 1500 on the 29th to refit.

 

TUSCAN left Greenock at 1300 for Scapa where she arrived the following morning.

 

 

Tuesday, 28th December 1943

 

ASHANTI was detached from convoy RA 55 A at noon and proceeded to Skaalefiord to fuel, thence to Scapa where she arrived at 1000 on the 31st.

 

Command in Chief, Home Fleet in DUKE OF YORK with JAMAICA, MUSKETEER, SAVAGE, STORD, SCORPION, MATCHLESS, OPPORTUNE, and VIRAGO left Kola Inlet at 1800 for Scapa where they arrived at 1000 on January 1st.

 

HAIDA, HURON, and IROQUOIS arrived at Kola Inlet in the evening having been detached early from escort of JW 55 B.

 

 

Wednesday, 29th December 1943

 

Captain (D) Seventeenth Destroyer Flotilla in ONSLOW with ONSLAUGHT, ORWELL, IMPULSIVE, and SCOURGE and ships of convoy JW 55 B arrived at Kola Inlet.

 

The local escort of convoy RA 55 A left Skaalefiord at 2000 to relieve the destroyers of the through escort.

 

 

Thursday, 30th Destroyer 1943

 

SERAPIS arrived at Scapa at 1500 for working up practices on first commissioning.

 

 

Friday, 31st December 1943

 

OFFA left the Humber at 0600 on completion of refit and arrived off Eyebroughy Buoy at 1800 where rendezvous with Vice Admiral, Second in Command Home Fleet in ANSON was made, and escort provided to Scapa where they arrived the following morning.

 

Captain (D) Third Destroyer Flotilla in MILNE and ASHANTI arrived at Scapa at 1000.

 

METEOR and ATHABASKAN arrived during the afternoon.

 

ASHANTI docked in the floating dock at Scapa.

 

Convoy RA 55 B left Kola Inlet at 1900 escorted by Captain (D) Seventeenth Destroyer Flotilla in ONSLOW with ORWELL, ONSLAUGHT, HAIDA, IMPULSIVE, IROQUOIS, and HURON.

 

Rear Admiral I.G. Glennie, CB, was promoted to Vice Admiral.

 

on to Home Fleet Destroyers, January-December 1944
or back to Admiralty War Diaries

revised 14/7/11


 

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