Background Events - April-May 1940
Norway, Battles of Narvik, Blitzkrieg on Western
Europe, Dunkirk evacuation starts
Monday, 22 April
GALATEA, SHEFFIELD, GLASGOW with destroyers ICARUS,
IVANHOE, IMPULSIVE, VANSITTART, WITCH and CAMPBELL embarked 2200 troops of the
15th Brigade, stores and three trucks at Rosyth on the 21st. They departed on the 22nd and arrived at Aandalsnes and Molde on the 23rd.
SHEFFIELD, VANSITTART and CAMPBELL
went to Molde and the rest to Aandalsnes. The troops and
equipment were disembarked from all ships beginning at 2100 and the British
force got away before dawn on the 24th. GALATEA had
embarked some 200 cases of gold at Aandalsnes for transshipment to England. She proceeded to Rosyth,
and destroyers IVANHOE, ICARUS and IMPULSIVE to
Immingham, with the rest of the force proceeding to Scapa Flow.
ST MAGNUS (1312grt) of convoy AP.1, escorted by destroyers JACKAL and
JAVELIN, arriving in Moldefjord was attacked by German bombers. JACKAL's main radio antenna was damaged by bomb splinters,
and she was
detached to escort damaged sloop PELICAN. Norwegian steamer SIGURD JARL
(924grt) was set afire in the bombing.
Destroyer SOMALI sighted an object on the surface at 0240 which changed
position before it could be
attacked in 64‑22N, 8‑32E, but SOMALI and sister ship TARTAR attacked
the contact. TARTAR attacked another submarine contact at 1210 in
63‑43N, 07‑49E. U.29 escaped with only light
en route with a Naval Base Party (under the Command of Captain C H Champness) for Molde, was attacked by two German Ju.87
bombers at 1350 in Romdalsfjord in 62‑49N, 4‑20E .
She was badly damaged after a bomb hit
caused the detonation of her depth charges. Lt Cdr H R Thompson of the
sloop, Cdr A A F MacLeish (ret), Lt Cdr H N C Webber, Paymaster Lt E F Burkitt
and Boatswain H Howell of the Base Party, and forty seven ratings from both
units were killed, and Lt A A F Talbot of the Base Party wounded. The
uninjured members of the Base Party were put aboard steamer ST SUNNIVA, which
escorted by destroyer SOMALI proceeded to Molde for fuel. The wounded
were put aboard destroyer JACKAL and sloop FLEETWOOD. Steamer ST MAGNUS was
coaling at Aalesund, while destroyer JAVELIN was standing by. JAVELIN was then attacked
by four German Ju bombers in Heisse Fjord
but was undamaged.
JACKAL and ST SUNNIVA departed the fjord at 0500/23rd for
Kirkwall, while PELICAN
was towed by FLEETWOOD and escorted to Lerwick by JACKAL, SOMALI and
sister ship TARTAR joining them at 1930/22nd. Tug ST MELLONS came
out from Lerwick and tug BRIGAND was detached from destroyer HOTSPUR's convoy.
While screening PELICAN, JACKAL attacked a submarine contact at 2307/22nd in 62‑44N, 03‑48E.
She also attacked a contact at 1524/23rd. SOMALI
(D.6) arrived at Scapa Flow at 0600/24th, and PELICAN, in tow of ST MELLONS at Lerwick at 1000/24th.
JACKAL and TARTAR proceeded from Lerwick and arrived at
Scapa Flow at 1500. On 2
May at 1020, PELICAN left Lerwick in tow of BRIGAND and escorted by
destroyer WANDERER to Rosyth. They were diverted en route to Sheerness and arrived in the Nore at 2200 on 5 May. PELICAN was taken to
Chatham for repairs
lasting until 3 December 1940.
A Swordfish from
818 Squadron from aircraft carrier FURIOUS was shot down north of Narvik by
German flak, Lt C R D Messenger died of wounds and Leading Airman T G
Cutler was killed. The pilot S/Lt (A) R C Roberts was wounded, but
rescued by light cruiser AURORA.
whaler BUTTERMERE (560grt) ran aground at Narvik, and requested relief
to permit repairs to be done.
ARK ROYAL (Vice Admiral Aircraft Carriers) departed Greenock at 0700
escorted by destroyers SIKH, MASHONA and JUNO. They arrived
at Scapa Flow at 0800/23rd.
RESOLUTION with destroyers BASILISK, WREN and HESPERUS departed Greenock at 1200 for the
Narvik area. On the 25th in 66‑34N, 07‑34E, they met southbound
battleship WARSPITE with destroyers HAVOCK, HOSTILE, HERO and FOXHOUND returning to
Scapa Flow. RESOLUTION and her destroyers arrived at Bygden at
REPULSE and destroyers HAVELOCK, HAVANT and
FAME arrived at
Destroyers KIMBERLEY and GRIFFIN departed Scapa Flow at 0740 for
Rosyth to escort steamer RUTLAND (1437grt) to
with cargo ship BLACKHEATH (4637grt) was diverted from Namsos to Skelfjord on
the 22nd, but was redirected back to Namsos. They arrived there, but at 2028
were ordered to stand off and arrive at dusk on the 23rd. They went back out to sea and returned the next night. Destroyer FORTUNE
departed Scapa Flow at 2359/22nd to join MAORI for
escort duties. During the night of the 23rd/24th, from 2330 to 0230, BLACKHEATH's cargo of trucks and a small quantity of ammunition and fuel
were unloaded. French destroyer BISON ran aground at Namsos and was towed off by MAORI. Destroyer
FORTUNE was detached at 1800/24th for Narvik, and BLACKHEATH returned to Namsos at 2130/24th to complete unloading during the night of
the 24th/25th. A
limited amount of motor transport and all the petrol, ammunition and rations
were unloaded. At daylight on the 25th, BLACKHEATH proceeded to Scapa
Flow, arriving there at 1500/27th
screening the 2nd Cruiser Squadron, attacked at 2120 a submarine contact
closing to attack the cruisers in 59‑52N, 00‑10W.
Sloop BLACK SWAN
attacked a submarine contact at 2150 in 60‑12N, 00‑31W.
departed Bristol Channel for the Clyde as part of the HAMMER operation. The steamers in this convoy were JOHN
THISTLEFORD (4764grt), PIZZARO (1367grt) and CISNEROS (1886grt).
SFAX fired two torpedoes at German steamers PALIME (2863grt) or PELIKAN
(3264grt) on their way to Stavanger in 58-15N,
06-00E, which missed.
laid mines in the Downs and off
Harwich, which sank two ships for 2607 tons. On the 22nd,
Norwegian steamer BRAVORE (1458grt) one mile south of Gull Buoy;
crew members and four French Naval ratings were lost, and there were six survivors. On
the 24th, British steamer STOKESLEY (1149grt) in 51‑32N, 01‑16E
with the lose of fifteen crew.
Midshipman (A) J.O. Burr was killed when his Skua of 759 Squadron crashed on
take off at Eastleigh.
departed Southend escorted by destroyer WHITEHALL.
Convoy OB.134 departed
Liverpool escorted by
sloop ROCHESTER from the 21st to 25th,
and dispersed on the 26th.
was formed from convoy OB.133GF from Liverpool and Bristol, escorted by
sloops LEITH and FOWEY on the 20th, convoy OA.133GF,
which departed Southend on the 20th escorted by sloops SCARBOROUGH and BIDEFORD,
with sixty ships. The convoy was escorted by sloops SCARBOROUGH and LEITH from 22 to 24 April.
The sloops were then detached to convoy HG.27 F.Sloop BIDEFORD escorted the
convoy from 22 to 28 April. The convoy arrived at Gibraltar on the 28th.
departed Southend, escorted by destroyer WOOLSTON, sloop HASTINGS, armed patrol
yacht BREDA. The convoy arrived at Rosyth on
(convoys leaving Methil on both 21 and 22 April bore designation MT.57)
departed Methil, escorted by destroyer WHITLEY and sloop LONDONDERRY. The convoy
arrived in the Tyne later that day.
departed the Tyne, escorted by destroyer WHITLEY and sloop
LONDONDERRY. The convoy had
to anchor in the Tees, owing that no ship was allow south of that point a
channel could be swept in the German minefield laid by aircraft the night
before. The convoy arrived at Southend on the 24th.
PINTAIL intercepted Dutch skoot WOCANA inside the mine barrier east of
Yarmouth. A collision
occurred between the two ships. The sloop was slightly damaged and the skoot
"SHELLFISH" was implemented by the Nore Command. The operation was
to intercept U-boats or surface craft using the telegraphic cable as an aid
to navigation. The operation began on the 22nd and was conducted on
subsequent nights. One patrol sloop was stationed between 52-37.5N, 2-5.25E
and 52-39.25N, 2-32.5E. A second patrol sloop was station between Haisborough
Light Vessel and 10 miles 285° from the Light Vessel. Anti submarine yacht
MOLLUSC with one MTB.in tow and a
second MTB.operated in the vicinity of Haisborough
completed boiler cleaning at Dover.
anti-submarine trawlers L'ORIENTAISE, LA NANTAISE, LA CANCALAISE arrived at
Dover for training
prior to taking over part of the Dover Strait patrol.
From 22 to 27 April,
light cruiser CERES was refitting at Singapore.
ORION arrived at Gibraltar for duty with the Mediterranean Fleet
after having departed Trinidad on the 14th.
LE CONQUERANT departed Casablanca on the 21st,
escorted by destroyer TORNADE.Both ships arrived Oran 23 April.
DUNEDIN departed Kingston on patrol.
departed Halifax at 0700
escorted by Canadian destroyers RESTIGOUCHE and ST LAURENT, which were
detached on the 23rd.. At 1800/23rd, the destroyers turned the convoy over to
the ocean escort Armed merchant cruiser ALAUNIA, which was detached on 6 May.
Destroyer VIVACIOUS and sloop LEITH joined the
convoy on 4 May and escorted it until its arrival at Liverpool on 7 May.
vessel BEP (151grt) was sunk by a German S-boat off Terschelling. The crew of
the fishing vessel was rescued.
Tuesday, 23 April
cruiser MONTCALM and destroyers VAUTOUR and ALBATROS, which departed Brest on the 22nd,
arrived at the Clyde to relieve damaged light cruiser EMILE
Destroyers KIMBERLEY and GRIFFIN departed Scapa Flow for Rosyth at
0740/22nd to escort Bsteamer RUTLAND (1437grt) to
Namsos. Danish steamer GUNVOR MAERSKE (1977grt), carrying the British 166th
Anti-Aircraft Battery, escorted by destroyers KIMBERLEY, BRAZEN, WOLVERINE
departed Leith at 1945 for Namsos where they arrived on the 27th.
Anti-Submarine Group of trawlers STELLA CAPELLA, CAPE ARGONA, CAPE CHELUYSKIN, BLACKFLY
arrived at Namsos escorting petrol carrier RONAN (1489grt). The
Anti-Submarine Group then proceeded to Skelfjord. On 26 April, the Group
departed for Molde.Trawler BLACKFLY was damaged in a collision on the 26th in
Skelfjord and remained behind. The group arrived on 27 May at Molde. The
group remained at Molde until the 30 April/1 May evacuation.
insistence of Vice Admiral Sir Max Horton, destroyers JAVELIN (SO), TARTAR,
BLYSKAWICA, GROM, supported by air cover at dawn,were to sweep for German
anti-submarine trawlers during the night of 17/18 April in the Western
Skagerrak. This operation was postponed for twenty four hours at
0023/17th, then on 0034/18th cancelled due to the heavy threat of air attack.
Finally, on the 23rd French large destroyers conducted this operation. French
large destroyers INDOMPTABLE (Capitaine de Vaisseau E.G.M. Barthes), MALIN
(Capitaine de Fregate E.J.H.L. De Prez) and TRIOMPHANT (Capitaine de Fregate
M.M.P.L. Pothuau) of the 8th Large Destroyer Division, which had departed
Cherbourg on the 19th for
Rosyth, departed Rosyth on Operation RAKE. Cdr C.A.N. Chatwin was aboard
INDOMPTABLE as a liaison officer. They operated in the Skagerrak to the
longitude of Hamburg, 10 East.Returning on the 24th, the French destroyers
engaged German auxiliary patrol boats Vp.702 (trawler MEMEL: 444grt) and
Vp.709 (trawler GUIDO MOHRING: 289grt) of the 7th Patrol Boat Flotilla and
motor torpedo boats S.10 and S.12.After an indecisive action, the engagement
was broken off. This early morning engagement was the only surface contact of
the operation. The French destroyers attacked U.26, which was able to escape
and arrived in Germany on the 25th.
U.56, returning to Germany, sighted the
French ships south of Skudesnes at 1600/24th. The French ships were then
bombed in the North Sea. TRIOMPHANT was near missed and
sustained damage to her port propeller shaft bracket. All three French ships
arrived back at Rosyth late on the 24th.
departed Scapa Flow at 0025 with tanker WAR NIZAM for Sullom
Voe. The destroyer was to wait and escort the tanker back to Scapa Flow after the oil
reports at 0635 and 0745 in 60‑20N to 60-50N, 4W to 6W, destroyers
HAVELOCK and HAVANT
departed Scapa Flow at 1100 for anti-submarine patrol.
submarine TETRARCH fired two torpedoes at German steamer WOLFRAM (3648grt)
escorted by three small escort ships in the Skagerrak in 58-21N,
11-02E. The submarine did not hit the merchant ship and was badly damaged in
the counterattack by old torpedo boat T.155. At 2222, submarine TETRARCH
fired two torpedoes at the 5th UJ Group. Auxiliary submarine chaser U-Jager-B
(trawler TREFF V: 330grt) was sunk with only three survivors in 58-21N, 10-24E. U-Jager-A
(trawler TREFF IV: 330grt) was also in the group. Submarine TETRARCH returned
to Rosyth for repairs which were promptly carried out.
arrived at Rosyth after patrol.
carriers ARK ROYAL (Vice Admiral L. V. Wells) and GLORIOUS departed Scapa
Flow at 1230 on Operation DX with heavy cruiser BERWICK, anti-aircraft
cruiser CURLEW, destroyers FEARLESS, FURY, HASTY, HEREWARD, HYPERION, JUNO. Aircraft
carrier ARK ROYAL carried nine Skuas and two Rocs of the 800 Squadron, nine
Skuas and two Rocs of the 801 Squadron, twelve Swordfish of the 810 Squadron,
nine Swordfish of the 820 Squadron. Aircraft carier GLORIOUS carried nine
Gladiators of the 802 Squadron, eleven Skuas of the 803 Squadron, nine
Gladiators of the 804 Squadron.GLORIOUS also carried the RAF 263 Squadron. That
evening, aircraft carrier GLORIOUS flew eighteen Gladiator aircraft of the
263 Squadron to an airfield at Lake Lesjaskog. These planes
were intended for the air defense of Aandalsnes and Molde, but were destroyed
by German bombing on the 25th. On 24 April, six Skuas of 800 and 801
Squadrons from ARK ROYAL and six Skuas of 803 Squadron from GLORIOUS flew
missions over Aandalsnes. All aircraft returned safely to the aircraft
carrier, but two Skuas crashed landed near the carrier, Lt C.P.
Campbell-Horsdall and Petty Officer A.E. Suggitt and Midshipman C. Treen and
Naval Airman A.E.T. Goble were rescued by destroyers. The British force
positioned itself midway between Namsos and Trondheim. At 0300/25th,
aircraft carrier ARK ROYAL launched six Swordfish of the 820 Squadron, eight
Swordfish of the 810 Squadron, seven Skuas of the 801 Squadron, two Skuas of
the 800 Squadron. Aircraft carrier GLORIOUS launched eleven Skuas of the 803
Squadron. These aircraft were to attack the Vaernes airfield and other
military targets at Trondheim. Aircraft
carrier GLORIOUS lost four Skuas of 803 Squadron in the raid, but all the
aircrews (Lt G.R. Callingham and Naval Airman D.A. Prime; Lt A.B.F.
Fraser-Harris and Leading Airman G.S. Russell; Lt H.E.R. Torin DSC,
Midshipman T.A. McKee; and L/Lt I.H. Easton and Naval Airman A.J. Hayman)
were rescued. The crews returned to England in a Sunderland aircraft.
Aircraft carrier ARK ROYAL lost one Swordfish from the 820 Squadron and three
Swordfish from the 810 Squadron, Lt A.A. Pardoe and Petty Officer L.M. Lloyd
of the 810 Squadron were lost; Captain W.H.N. Martin RM, Lt J.A. Crawford,
Leading Airman H.G. Edwards were picked up by destroyer MAORI; Lt N.R.
Corbet-Milward and Petty Officer J. Black were picked up by a destroyer;
Captain A.C. Newsom RM, Lt Cdr G.B. Hodgkinson, Leading Airman R.H. McColl
were picked up by a destroyer. At 0725/26th, the destroyer screen was sent to
Sullom Voe for refuelling. These destroyers were relieved at 0700/26th by
destroyers GRENADE, BEAGLE, FORTUNE, VOLUNTEER, ENCOUNTER, ESCORT, which
sailed from the Narvik area at 1630. The original screen arrived at Sullom
Voe at 2130 at 26 April. They departed to rejoin at 0400/27th. On 26 April, a
Skua of 803 Squadron was shot down, Lt C.H. Filmer was rescued, but Petty
Officer K.G. Baldwin was killed. Lt Cdr H.P. Bramwell with Lt J.W. Collett in
a Skua of 801 Squadron was shot down on the 26th. The plane force landed near
a snow drift and both crew were unhurt. On 27 April, two Skuas from ARK ROYAL
were shot down by German aircraft, Lt (A) W.C.A. Church and Acting S/Lt (A)
D.G. Willis of the 803 Squadron were lost. The other aircrew was rescued. At
2100/27th, aircraft carrier GLORIOUS was sent to Scapa Flow escorted by
destroyers GRENADE, HASTY, FURY, ESCORT, ENCOUNTER, FORTUNE. They arrived at
1800/28th. The raid was repeated on the 28th when ARK ROYAL, escorted by
heavy cruiser BERWICK, light cruiser SHEFFIELD, destroyers
HYPERION, HEREWARD, FEARLESS, JUNO, launched
twelve Swordfish and seven Skuas to attack Trondheim area targets. One
Skua of 800 Squadron was shot down.Midshipman (A) L.H. Gallagher and Naval
Airman G.W. Halifax were rescued and returned to Hatston by air.
A British force
under Captain L. H. K. Hamilton, commanding officer of AURORA, was formed at
Harstad with light cruisers AURORA and ENTERPRISE and destroyers
FAULKNOR, CODRINGTON, ARDENT, ELECTRA, ESCAPADE, ACASTA, ZULU, BEDOUIN, one
Polish destroyer assigned the duty of maintaining close British control of
the waters around Narvik.
FORTUNE and WALKER departed Scapa Flow at 1215 for
Sullom Voe to escort flying boat depot ship MANELA to the Clyde.
the depot ship, destroyer WALKER continued on to Liverpool.
JAVELIN escorting steamer ST MAGNUS (1312grt), which was carrying the
survivors from sunken steamer CEDARBANK, arrived at Kirkwall from Aalesund at
2230/23rd. Destroyer JAVELIN went on to Scapa Flow arriving at
ROMANSBY (4887grt), alongside the jetty at Narvik, was destroyed when the
jetty was blown up. The steamer's crew of thirty eight were interned in Sweden.
BRILLIANT completed boiler cleaning at Dover and proceeded
to patrol stations OC 1 and OC 2 to relieve destroyer BOADICEA which had
developed a defect. Destroyer BOADICEA's defect was corrected in twenty four
hours and returned to service.
VANESSA and minesweeper HUSSAR entered the submarine basin to boiler clean. Destroyer
VANESSA completed boiler cleaning on the 26th.
seven steamers, including steamers BARON KINNAIRD and DAVID LIVINGSTONE
(Commodore) departed Bristol Channel escorted by
destroyer MONTROSE. The convoy arrived at Loire on the 24th.
Convoy SA.38 of
one steamer arrived at St Malo from Southampton.
departed Southend, escorted destroyer VALOROUS and sloop WESTON. Destroyers
WHITLEY and WINCHESTER supported the
convoy then joined FN.155. The convoy arrived at the Tyne on the 25th.
steamer SIGURD JARL (924grt) sank at Moldefjord after having been hit and set
afire by German bombing on the 22nd.
SAYN (2321grt) was sunk on a mine in Hubert Bay near Borkum.
NEPTUNE and destroyers DECOY and DEFENDER arrived at Gibraltar for duty with
the Mediterranean Fleet after having departed Freetown on the 18th.
sailed for Malta, but was
recalled to escort repair ship RESOURCE.
SOVEREIGN, which was met at sea by destroyers KEPPEL and WATCHMAN,arrived at
Gibraltar for duty in the
DRAGON departed Malta.
merchant cruiser KOUTOBIA departed Algiers escorting four
liners to Brest.
departed Freetown escorted by
armed merchant cruiser PRETORIA CASTLE until 7 May.
DANAE arrived at Penang.
Wednesday, 24 April
departed Rosyth for Operation KNIFE in the Sognefjord area. Operation KNIFE
was to supply arms and ammunition to the Norwegian forces in Sognefjord. On
25 April, off the Norwegian coast, a mine exploded close ahead and TRUANT was
forced to return badly damaged to Rosyth for repairs. Submarine CLYDE, which had
departed Blyth on patrol on the 24th, was recalled to
replace submarine TRUANT. Submarine CLYDE arrived at
Rosyth on the 26th and departed Rosyth on the Operation on the 27th.
Submarine CLYDE departed Blyth on patrol.
Submarine SEVERN departed Rosyth
for Dundee where she arrived later that day.
NARWHAL departed Blyth for Immingham to embark mines.
submarines PASTEUR, THETIS, CALYPSO departed Harwich. The first with defects
and returning to Cherbourg and the second
two on patrol.
ORPHEE arrived at Harwich after patrol. Submarine ORPHEE had defects which
required repair before patrol could be resumed. The defects were found to be
serious and the submarine was sent with submarine PASTEUR back to Cherbourg for repairs.
Lyver was killed when his Swordfish of the Gosport Torpedo Training Unit hit
the sea on a practice torpedo run on auxiliary minesweeper ROYAL DAFFODIL
northwest of Troon.
Marryat RM, was killed when his Gladiator of 759 Squadron crashed southwest
LEONARD (217grt) was sunk by German bombing in the North Sea.
WARSPITE, light cruisers EFFINGHAM, ENTERPRISE, AURORA,
destroyer ZULU, screened by destroyers ENCOUNTER, ESCORT, FAULKNOR, FOXHOUND,
HAVOCK, HERO, HOSTILE and Polish destroyers BLYSKAWICA and GROM bombarded
Narvik. Light cruiser EFFINGHAM sank captured British steamer RIVERTON
(5378grt) moored along an outlying pier. The steamer's crew of thirty
three were interned in Sweden. British troops
were embarked on repair ship VINDICTIVE at Bogen to be landed at Narvik
should the Germans be induced to surrender. However, the Germans made no such
overtures and these troops were disembarked after the operation and returned
to Harstad. Low visibility prevented an assessment of the bombardment. Destroyers
FAULKNOR and ENCOUNTER were left off Narvik to patrol the area. The
destroyers were joined later that day by anti-submarine trawler NORTHERN SPRAY
(655grt) and the next day by light cruiser ENTERPRISE and Polish
destroyer BLYSKAWICA. After this bombardment, battleship WARSPITE with
destroyers HAVOCK, HOSTILE, HERO, FOXHOUND left the Narvik area for Scapa Flow in preparation
for WARSPITE's return to the Mediterranean. Battleship
WARSPITE arrived at Scapa Flow at 1615/26th,
WARSPITE departed for the Clyde on the 27th at
1100. Battleship WARSPITE arrived in the Clyde escorted by
destroyers INGLEFIELD, HERO, FOXHOUND at 1100/28th.
YORK, light cruisers
MANCHESTER and BIRMINGHAM, destroyers
ACHERON, ARROW, GRIFFIN departed Rosyth
at 0700 with 1600 troops, the rest of the 15th Brigade. At dusk on the 24th,
light cruiser MANCHESTER disembarked
troops at Molde and heavy cruiser YORK and light
cruiser BIRMINGHAM disembarked
troops at Aandalsnes. General Paget, which had taken passage in MANCHESTER, boarded
Norwegian destroyer SLEIPNER, which carried him to Aandalsnes.
U.23 made two unsuccessful attacks on heavy
cruiser YORK as she was leaving the area on the 25th.
In heavy air
attacks on Aandalsnes, anti-aircraft cruiser CURACOA (Captain E. A. Aylmer
DSC) was badly damaged when she was struck by a bomb below the bridge at 2000
and it exploded between decks killing forty five ratings and wounding thirty
six, including Aylmer and navigator
Lt Cdr R.M.P. Williamson. Antiaircraft cruiser CURACOA was escorted seaward
by sloop FLAMINGO which relieved her as the Aandalsnes guard ship. Light
cruisers SHEFFIELD and GLASGOW and destroyers
WITCH, CAMPBELL, VANSITTART closed to provide cover. The destroyers were low
on fuel and proceeded directly to Scapa Flow. Cruiser
CURACOA arrived at Scapa Flow on the 26th
escorted by light cruisers SHEFFIELD and GLASGOW. Cruiser
CURACOA departed Scapa Flow with damaged destroyer HOTSPUR at
2030/26th and arrived at Chatham on 1 May was
repairing until late August 1940.
The heavy air
attacks continued on the 25th at Aandalsnes and Norwegian torpedo boat TRYGG
and anti-submarine trawlers BRADMAN (452grt) Lt A.N. Blundell RNR), HAMMOND
(452grt, Skipper A. McKay RNR), LARWOOD
(452grt, Skipper P. Quinlan RNR) were badly
damaged and run aground. Skipper A. McKay RNR, of trawler
HAMMOND was wounded. The entire crew of the trawler BRADMAN was rescued. The trawlers were all units of the 22nd AntiSubmarine Group. The four
ships were later salved by German forces for their own use and renamed ZICK,
Vp.6112 (trawler FRIESE), Vp.6115 (trawler SALIER), V P 6111 (trawler FRANKE),
relieved sloop AUCKLAND as
anti-aircraft guard ship and for wireless duties at Namsos at 1935/24th.
Destroyers ASHANTI, MOHAWK,
NUBIAN, SIKH departed Scapa Flow at 1800 to
operate in the fjords around Trondheim against German
coastal shipping. The destroyers cruised the fjords from 0900 on 26 to
daylight on the 28th supported by light cruisers MANCHESTER and BIRMINGHAM without success.
Destroyers NUBIAN and ASHANTI operated in
Kraakvaagsfjord and off Fro Havet. Destroyers MOHAWK and SIKH operated in the
Trondheim Leads. On 27 April in Kraakvaagsfjord, destroyers ASHANTI and NUBIAN
explored the fjord while MOHAWK and SIKH patrolled at the mouth of
Trondheimsfjord. Destroyer ASHANTI was taken under
attack by German bombers which were able to damage her with near misses. Destroyers
ASHANTI and NUBIAN
arrived at Scapa Flow at 0900/29th. Destroyer ASHANTI departed Scapa Flow at 1000/30th
for repairs at Dundee until 23 May when she arrived back at
Scapa Flow for duty.
JUPITER departed Scapa Flow at 0800 to search for a Walrus seaplane
of light cruiser SOUTHAMPTON, flying from Hatston, last reported twenty miles
from 59‑30N, 2‑00W. The search was unsuccessful and the destroyer
returned to Scapa Flow at dusk. Petty Officer Airman C.L.
Smeathers of light cruiser EDINBURGH, Midshipman (A)
P.L. Furber and Naval Airman 1/c C.E. Adams of SOUTHAMPTON were
the Walrus of 700 Squadron.
cruiser EMILE BERTIN departed the Clyde for Brest escorted by
French destroyers ALBATROS and VAUTOUR.
FP.3 of troopships COLOMBIE (13,391grt), MEXIQUE (12,220grt), CHENONCEAUX
(14,825grt), PROVIDENCE (11,996grt),
escorted by French destroyers VALMY, VERDUN, LEOPARD,
arrived in the Clyde. French troopship GENERAL METZINGER
(9312grt) was damaged in a collision on the 25th in St George's
Channel en route and arrived at Liverpool. French
troopship VILLE D'ALGER (10,172grt) departed Scapa Flow on the 26th
escorted by French destroyer FOUDROYANT and destroyer ANTELOPE to embark the
troops from the damaged troopship. On 27 April, the French troopship and
destroyer FOUDROYANT arrived at Liverpool.
After dark there
was a German air raid on Scapa Flow. The area west
of Cava was closed until it was declared free of mines at 1530/25th.
ALDERSDALE (8402grt) arrived at Skelfjord at 0300 escorted by destroyers
BEAGLE and VOLUNTEER.
CHROBRY (11,442grt) escorted by destroyers VETERAN and VISCOUNT departed the
Clyde at 0545 for
Namsos. They arrived at Namsos at 1010/28th, but due to port congestion, it
was not possible to unload her.She was sent back out to sea at 1315. At 2230,
they returned and the destroyers ferried the troops and stores to the jetty.
The ships unloaded until 0700/29th when they all sailed. All ships safely at
Scapa Flow at 0700/30th.
departed Sullom Voe at 1800 for Devonport for refitting. The destroyer
arrived at 1400/27th.
were disposed on the 23rd with U.14, U.17, U.24 off Bergen, U.23, U.57,
58, U.59 east of Orkneys, U.13 and U.61 and five large boats between the
Shetlands the Minch.
escorted steamers BELLEROPHON (9019grt) and LYACAON (7350grt) from Plymouth to the Clyde.
submarine was reported off Start Point. Destroyer WAKEFUL departed Plymouth at 1810. Destroyer
BULLDOG departed Plymouth at 1714. Destroyer
VESPER and corvette ARABIS were also ordered to search. Destroyer VESPER
departed Plymouth at 2053 and
corvette ARABIS departed Plymouth at 2230 to
departed Southend, escorted by destroyers WALLACE and VALOROUS. The convoy
arrived at the Tyne on the 26th.
Convoy MT.58 departed
Methil, escorted by destroyers WESTMINSTER and WOLSEY. The
convoy arrived in the Tyne later that day.
departed the Tyne, escorted by destroyers WESTMINSTER and WOLSEY. The
convoy arrived at Southend on the 26th.
GIRASOL (648grt) was sunk in a collision northeast of Spit Buoy.
CRONSHAGEN (1787grt) was sunk and Latvian steamer GUNDEGA (3583grt) was badly
damaged on mines off Drogden, near Copenhagen.
NEPTUNE and ORION departed Gibraltar for Malta. Destroyers
DECOY and DEFENDER, escorting repair ship RESOURCE, departed Gibraltar for Malta.
merchant cruiser ORION sank steamer HAXBY (5207grt) in the South Atlantic in 31‑30N,
51‑30W. Seventeen crew were lost.
Thursday, 25 April
SOMALI, MASHONA, TARTAR departed Scapa Flow at 2015 for
Rosyth to escort troopships ULSTER MONARCH (3791grt) and ULSTER PRINCE
(3791grt) from Leith to Aandalsnes. The destroyers arrived at
Flow at 1700/27th with these troopships, after being diverted en
Sloop BLACK SWAN
departed Scapa Flow at 1000 for Aandalsnes to arrive at dusk
on the 26th.
arrived at Scapa Flow at 0500 with wounded from damaged sloop
PELICAN. Sloop FLEETWOOD also escorted steamer HIGHLANDER (1216grt)
from Lerwick to abreast Scapa Flow.
WHITLEY attacked a submarine contact in 51-00N, 01-00E. The contact was
assessed as doubtful.
destructor ship CORFIELD was lent to Vice Admiral, Dover.
SEMINOLE (10,389grt) was damaged on a mine in 51‑29N, 04‑07W.
submarine TRIDENT fired two torpedoes at German steamer PALIME (2863grt) or
PELIKAN (3264grt) returning from Stavanger in 57-30N,
U.22 had been earlier declared lost after
failing to return to Germany from her patrol area off Lindesnes. She was
probably lost around 23 March on a mine twenty miles south of Kristiansand in
57N, 09E. Some sources credit U.22's loss to an attack by French submarine ORPHEE on the 21st, but this is in error.
DORIS arrived at
Harwich after patrol. Submarine DORIS had defects
that required repair before she could resume patrol.
destroyers MAILLE BREZE and EPERVIER departed the Clyde at 0430 with
French convoy FS.2 for Scapa Flow to arrive at
1000/27th. The convoy was diverted to Scapa Flow at 2129/27th. This
convoy, escorted by French sloops CHAMOIS and COMMANDANT DELAGE, departed
Brest on the 18th
with freighters BRESTOIS (3094grt), CHATEAU PAVIE (2047grt), SAINT FIRMIN
(4528grt). On 26 April at 1900, destroyers WITCH and CAMPBELL departed Scapa Flow to relieve
French destroyer MAILLE BREZE which arrived in the Clyde on the 27th.
The convoy arrived safely at Harstad at 2320 on 1 May, escorted by destroyers
WITCH and CAMPBELL. CHATEAU PAVIE disembarked at Stoveien, SAINT FIRMIN at
Skaanland and Bogen, BRESTOIS at Skaanland.
EMERALD and liner DUCHESS OF RICHMOND arrived at Liverpool from Halifax. The light
cruiser went on to the Clyde.
LILY (1281grt) departed Kirkwall for Preston with a British
prize crew aboard. The steamer never arrived. Temporary Lt A.M. Speirs RNR, the five
ratings of the prize crew were lost.
departed Southend escorted by destroyer VENETIA.
departed Liverpool escorted by destroyer WALPOLE from 25 to
28 April, when she was detached to conovy SL.28.
Convoy BC.34 of
steamers BARON CARNEGIE, DUNKWA (Commodore), GLOUCESTER CITY, KUFRA, LOTTIE
R departed Loire escorted by destroyer MONTROSE. The
convoy arrived in Bristol Channel on the 26th.
departed Southend, escorted by destroyer WHITLEY and sloop LONDONDERRY. Destroyers
WHITLEY and WINCHESTER joined from
convoy FN.153. The convoy arrived at the Tyne on the 27th.
departed Methil, escorted by destroyers VIVIEN and VIMIERA. The convoy
arrived in the Tyne later that day.
departed the Tyne, escorted by destroyers VIVIEN and
VIMIERA. The convoy arrived at Southend on the 27th.
MIDSLAND (1089grt) and Panamanian steamer BOBBY collided three miles south of
Dungeness. Steamer BOBBY sank and the entire crew was picked up by the Dutch
steamer. Steamer MIDSLAND had damage to her bows.
vessel WILLY (147grt) was sunk in mining off Terschelling. The entire crew of
the fishing vessel was lost.
Friday, 26 April
NARWHAL departed Blyth on minelaying mission FD.6 in Aalbeck
SEAWOLF and SHARK arrived at Harwich after patrols.
Submarine CLYDE arrived at
Rosyth to replace damaged submarine TRUANT in Operation KNIFE.
GRAFTON and Polish destroyer BURZA departed Scapa Flow at 0200 with oiler BOARDALE (8334grt), steamers HERON (2374grt) and BALTEAKO
(1328grt) for the Narvik area. Steamer HERON was carrying 400 depth charges
for the destroyers at Narvik. The convoy arrived safely, but on the 30th,
oiler BOARDALE was lost after running aground in Assundfjord in 68-43N,
14-24.5E near Harstad. Destroyer CODRINGTON at 1241/30th was ordered to
assist oiler BOARDALE. Steamers HERON and BALTEAKO with destroyers GRAFTON
and BURZA arrived in Vestfjord on 1 May. Tanker INVERARDER, escorted by
destroyers CODRINGTON and ESCAPADE, was to have pumped the oil out of
BOARDALE, but BOARDALE caught fire and was lost before INVERARDER arrived.
departed Scapa Flow at 0600 for Lerwick with dynamo spares
for damaged destroyer ECLIPSE. Destroyer JUPITER then escorted base ship
MANCHESTER CITY departing Kirkwall at 1800/26th
for the Tyne.
force consisting of heavy cruiser YORK, light cruisers
MANCHESTER and BIRMINGHAM, destroyers ACHERON, ARROW, GRIFFIN encountered
German U-boat supply ships Schiff 26 (trawler JULIUS PICKENPACK: 394grt) and
Schiff 37 (trawler SCHLESWIG: 433grt) off Moldefjord. Both German ships were
on a supply mission and were flying the Dutch flag in disguise. Destroyer
ARROW was proceeding independently from Romdalsfjord to Scapa.As destroyer
ARROW tried to capture trawler SCHLESWIG, the trawler
rammed and lightly damaged destroyer ARROW. The trawler then was taken under
fire by light cruiser BIRMINGHAM and
sunk in 63‑00N,
04‑19E.No survivors were located. After SCHLESWIG was
other destroyers searched for other trawlers. Trawler JULIUS PICKENPACK was
captured by destroyer GRIFFIN in 62‑37N,
04‑00E at 0955. Destroyer GRIFFIN put a boarding
party under the command of Lt J.A.J. Dennis aboard the trawler and the
trawler was taken to Scapa Flow, arriving on
the 28th. Trawler JULIUS PICKENPACKhad the name POLARIS painted on her
counter. This deception caused confusion upon the identity of this trawler
for many years. Destroyer ARROW proceeded to Scapa Flow with destroyer
ACHERON and arrived at 0600/27th. Destroyer ARROW departed 1630/27th for
Middlesborough for repairs escorted by destroyers HAVOCK and HOSTILE. Destroyer
ARROW, repairs completed, departed Middlesbrough on 13 May to
return to Scapa Flow.She arrived at Scapa Flow at 0730 on 14
ACHERON departed Scapa Flow at 1200/27th and arrived in the Clyde at 1300/28th.
With only six
serviceable aircraft, aircraft carrier FURIOUS,which had been off Norway since 11 April,
left her station and set course for the Clyde. Destroyers
DELIGHT, DIANA, IMPERIAL of her escort were detached for Scapa Flow at 1800/27th
and arrived at 1900/28th.
FURIOUS arrived at 0700/29th in the Clyde escorted by
destroyers IMOGEN, ISIS, ILEX.
departed Scapa Flow at 0800 for repairs at Devonport.
Troopship FRANCONIA (20,175grt),
proceeding unescorted from Narvik to the Clyde, was attacked
by a German submarine at 0105 in 59‑48N, 5‑59W. Destroyers JANUS
and ANTELOPE were sent to assist. However, when it was found FRANCONIA escaped
damaged, the destroyers were recalled to Scapa Flow at 0545.
ANTELOPE, French destroyer FOUDROYANT, armed merchant cruiser VILLE D'ORAN
departed Scapa Flow 1700 for Liverpool, arriving
out of ammunition, was relieved at 1900 by sloop BLACK SWAN on her arrival at
1900 as anti-aircraft guard ship at Aandalsnes.
departed Aandalsnes at 2100 for Scapa Flow.
FS.1 departed Brest escorted by
French destroyers CYCLONE and MISTRAL on the 16th, Greenock on the 20th,
escorted by destroyers BRESTOIS and BOULONNAIS, arrived at Scapa Flow at 0700/22nd.
The convoy departed Scapa Flow on the 23rd at
0700, French convoy FS.1, composed of French freighters SAUMUR (2955grt),
AMIENOIS (3713grt), CAP BLANC (3317grt)
and escorted by French destroyers BOULONNAIS and BRESTOIS and destroyer
MATABELE, arrived at Namsos at 2030/27th. The convoy disembarked its cargo of
stores and ammunition for the troops ashore. Destroyers BRESTOIS and
BOULONNAIS escorted steamers AMIENOIS and SAUMUR departing Namsos on the 29th
with 840 French troops. They arrived Scapa Flow at 1200 on 2
May. Destroyer MATABELE and steamer CAP BLANC arrived
at Scapa Flow at 0700 on 2 May.
SOMALI, MASHONA, TARTAR departed Leith at 2200 with
troopships ULSTER MONARCH and ULSTER PRINCE for
Aandalsnes. At 0043/27th, they were ordered to Scapa Flow to await
orders. They arrived at 1700/27th.
ICARUS, IMPULSIVE departed Immingham at 2100/26th and arrived at Scapa Flow at 1900/27th.
JACKAL, JAVELIN, WITCH, CAMPBELL were held in readiness at Scapa Flow to proceed at
2100 to intercept an unknown warship. This warship was found to be Norwegian
destroyer SLEIPNER when she arrived at Lerwick. Destroyer SLEIPNER departed
Lerwick at 0900/27th and arrived Scapa Flow at 1700/27th.
trawler BLACKFLY of the 12th Anti-Submarine Group was damaged in a collision
as she was departing Skelfjord with the rest of the Group for Molde. The
trawler returned to Skelfjord.Trawler BLACKFLY was further damaged on 4 May
when she ran aground at Skelfjord.
departed Methil, escorted by destroyer WOOLSTON and armed patrol trawler
BREDA. The convoy
arrived in the Tyne later that day.
departed the Tyne, escorted by destroyer WOOLSTON and
armed patrol trawler BREDA. The convoy
arrived at Southend on the 28th. Convoy FS.157 was cancelled.
Steamer CREE (4791grt),
astern of convoy FS.54,was damaged on a mine laid on 2 April by German
minesweeper Schiff 11 in 52-53N, 02-19E. The steamer was towed to Yarmouth.
destructor ships BORDE and CORFIELD were engaged in Operation MNS 2 on 26, 27,
28, 29, 30 April.
U.13 attacked a steamer west of Pentland Firth, but torpedo
defects prevented any damage being done.
U.17 rescued a downed German aircrew seventy
miles southeast of the Shetlands. The seaplane was then destroyed by the
torpedo boat GARM was sunk by German bombing at Bjordal in Sognefjord, north
of Bergen.None of the crew were killed in the bombing as they were able to
abandon ship when they spotted the German planes coming to attack.
After a loop
crossing in St Margaret's Bay, destroyer BOADICEA was dispatched to join
destroyer KEITH on patrol. Two French anti-submarine trawlers were at sea in
the area.Trawler L'ORIENTAISE dropped depth charges which exploded depth
charges on sunken trawler PERIDOT. Tugs were dispatched to assist the French
trawler. The loop crossings were later found to be British dan laying yachts.
Convoy OG.27 was
formed from convoys OA.135G, which departed Southend on the 24th, escorted by
destroyer VIVACIOUS and sloop FOLKESTONE, OB.135G, which departed Liverpool on the 24th,
escorted by sloops FOWEY and DEPTFORD, of fifty one ships. Sloop FOLKESTONE
escorted the convoy on the 26th. Sloop FOWEY and destroyer VIVACIOUS escorted
the convoy from 26 April. Sloop FOWEY was damaged in a minor collision on the
24th, as her convoy section was setting out. Destroyer VENETIA stood by to
assist, but sloop FOWEY was able to proceed with the convoy. On 26 April,
destroyer VIVACIOUS departed the convoy to join convoy HG.27 and on the 27th,
sloop FOWEY joined the HG.27 convoy. Sloop DEPTFORD escorted the convoy on 26
and 27 April. French sloop CHEVREUIL and auxiliary patrol vessel MERCEDITA
escorted the convoy from 27 April to 3 May. The convoy arrived at Gibraltar on 3 May.
departed Liverpool escorted by destroyer VIMY fro 26 to 29 April,
when she was detached to convoy HX.36.
HIGHLAND PATRIOT (14,172grt) ran aground off East Knock John Buoy. The
steamer was refloated later on the 26th.
Following Halifax escort duties,
battleship MALAYA arrived at Gibraltar escorted by
destroyers VELOX and VORTIGERN.
departed Gibraltar with forty ships. The convoy was
escorted by French sloop ANNAMITE and auxiliary patrol vessel VIKING from 26 April
to 2 May. Sloop SCARBOROUGH and destroyer VERSATILE escorted the
convoy from 2 to 5 May. The convoy arrived at Liverpool on 5 May.
LE TONNANT, escorted by patrol vessel RAVIGNAN arrived from Casablanca at Gibraltar. The submarine
had departed Dakar called at Casablanca departing 25 April.
The submarine departed Gibraltar 28 April and
arrived at Bizerte on 1 May,
escorted by sloop YSER. The patrol vessel returned toCasablanca. Submarines
NAUTILUS and SAPHIR, escorted by sloop YSER, arrived at Gibraltar from Brest. The submarines
departed Gibraltar on the 28th and arrived at Bizerte on 1 May,
escorted by sloop YSER.
departed Halifax at 1000
escorted by Canadian destroyers SAGUENAY and SKEENA, which were
detached on the 27th. The ocean escort was Armed merchant cruiser ASCANIA,
which was detached on 8 May. French submarine AJAX was to have
sailed on the 24th to escort the convoy, but defects with an air compressor
cancelled the sailing. Destroyers WALPOLE and WESSEX escorted the convoy
from 10 to 12 May, when the convoy arrived at Liverpool.
Saturday, 27 April
GLORIOUS left her station off the Norwegian coast at 2100/27th for
replenishment at Scapa Flow. Aircraft carrier GLORIOUS arrived at
Scapa Flow at 1800/28th
escorted by destroyers FURY, FORTUNE, ESCORT, GRENADE, HASTY, ENCOUNTER.
steamer NYHAUG (4044grt) was sunk by German bombing at Lepsoy.
U.13 at 2326/27th damaged tanker
SCOTTISH AMERICAN (6999grt) west of Pentland Firth in 58‑41N,
04‑40W. The steamer was towed to Loch Eribol by decoy ship LOOE
(steamer BEAULY: 1061grt) and armed boarding vessel NORTHERN REWARD (655grt).
Destroyers DELIGHT, DIANA, IMPERIAL en route to Scapa Flow were diverted
to assist on the 28th. Minesweeping trawler JUNIPER stood by while 8200 tons,
the entire cargo less 1000 tons of oil, which had been lost, was pumped into
tanker OIL PIONEER for return to Scapa
Flow. Transfer was completed on 2 May. The tanker was able to leave Loch
Eribol on 5 May with tug ST MELLONS and trawler JUNIPER for North Shields.
FP.2 departed Brest on the 18th
composed of passenger ships DJENNE (8790grt), FLANDRE (8503grt), PRESIDENT
DOUMER (11,898grt). The convoy departed Greenock at 0100/21st escorted
by destroyers FEARLESS, FURY, VANOC. They proceeded via the Minches for
Namsos.En route, they were diverted to Scapa Flow to await
developments. The convoy arrived at Scapa Flow at 0625/22nd. French
large destroyers CHEVALIER PAUL, MILAN, TARTU and destroyers
CODRINGTON and FAME, departed Scapa Flow on the 24th at
1600 with convoy FP.2. This convoy safely arrived at Harstad on the 27th
carrying the first contingent of the 27th Demi Brigade of the Chasseur Alpins.
French destroyers TARTU, MILAN, CHEVALIER PAUL
departed Narvik with French steamers DJENNE and PRESIDENT DOUMER on the 29th.
arrived at Scapa Flow on 2 May. French steamer FLANDRE
departed Narvik escorted by destroyer ARDENT at 0800 on 2 May for the Clyde, via the
Minches. They arrived safely at 1300 on 6 May.
Steamers DELIUS and DALLINGTON COURT and destroyers AMAZON and
WITHERINGTON had departed the Clyde at 1900/21st for Scapa Flow, arriving at
1100/23rd. Convoy TM.1, consisting of steamers DELIUS (6065grt),
DALLINGTON COURT (6889grt), SPANKER (1875grt), LOCHNAGAR (1619grt) departed
Scapa Flow escorted by destroyers AFRIDI, AMAZON, WITHERINGTON at 0315/24th
to arrive at dusk on the 26th. The convoy arrived at Aandalsnes at dusk on
the 27th. The arriving convoy found the town in flames and the area under
heavy air attack. The convoy was bombed with 125 bombs from 1345 to 1700. Steamer
DELIUS was damaged by German bombing. Some disembarkation was done and sloop
BLACK SWAN's ammunition was replenished, but when the convoy left at
0200/28th, still under heavy air attack, the greater part of the stores,
including the first heavy anti-aircraft battery to reach Norway was still
aboard the cargo ships. The convoy was to stand off the coast to await
further orders. Convoy TM.1 departed Romdalsfjord escorted by destroyers
AFRIDI, AMAZON, WITHERINGTON. The convoy was under heavy air attack from 1000
to 1400/28th with 65 bombs being dropped but no damage was done. The convoy
was given anti-aircraft support by destroyers MOHAWK and SIKH, which were
withdrawn at dawn on the 28th from the Trondheim blockade to
assist convoy TM.1, which now also included petrol carrier RONAN. _____
AURORA joined Destroyer FAULKNOR at Bjervik and then both proceeded to
BEAGLE, escorting the Aircraft carriers, made an attack at 0920 on a
submarine contact in 64‑31N, 4‑07E.
IMOGEN, escorting aircraft carrier FURIOUS, made an asdic contact in 62-54N,
01-56W at 1012. After two depth charge attacks a periscope was sighted at a
45° angle suggesting a badly damaged U-boat. Destroyer ILEX joined to assist.
VANSITTART departed Scapa Flow at 2000/27th
for Sullom Voe to escort tanker WAR NIZAM to Invergordon to reload. Destroyer
VANSITTART stood by to escort the loaded tanker back to Sullom Voe.
after gunnery exercises departed Scapa Flow at 1300 to join
light cruiser ARETHUSA at 1830 in 59N, 0E. Both ships were diverted to Scapa Flow.
HOSTILE and HAVOCK departed Scapa Flow at 1800 for
Rosyth to boiler clean and make good minor defects.
and ACHERON arrived Scapa Flow at 0600. Destroyer
ARROW departed at 1630 for repairs at Middlesbrough. Destroyer
ACHERON departed at 1200 for the Clyde for repairs
arriving at 1300/28th.
EXPRESS was damaged while entering a lock at Immingham. The destroyer was
quickly repaired at Hartlepool and returned to
departed Scapa Flow at 2100 for Aandalsnes.
Sloop BLACK SWAN
in Romsdalfjord fired 1200 rounds of ammunition and had only 210 rounds
remaining. No damage was sustained by sloop BLACK SWAN on the 27th.
EMPIRE ABILITY (7603grt) departed Greenock at 1630/23rd
escorted by destroyer JANUS. Destroyers HAVANT and HAVELOCK from
anti-submarine patrol relieved JANUS en route on the 24th. Destroyer JANUS
arrived at Scapa Flow at 1900/25th.
EMPIRE ABILITY (7603grt), which was carrying motorized landing craft, arrived
at Harstad escorted by destroyers HAVANT and HAVELOCK.
Convoys TSM.2 and FS.3 were
diverted to Scapa Flow at 2129. Both convoys arrived on the
28th escorted by Escort vessels JASON and GLEANER and anti-submarine trawlers.
The escort then returned to the Clyde.
Submarine CLYDE for Operation
KNIFE and Polish submarine ORZEL for patrol departed Rosyth. However, CLYDE developed
engine defects and returned the same day.
CACHALOT departed Blyth for repairs at
SYBILLE departed Harwich on patrol.
RUBIS departed Brest for Harwich.
departed Southend escorted by destroyer WINDSOR.
ARGUS arrived at Malta from Toulon, escorted by
destroyers STURDY and WATERHEN.
carrier was under repair from 29 April to 29 May. Aircraft carrier ARGUS
departed Malta on 29 May,
escorted by two French destroyers. The three ships arrived at Toulon on 31 May.
Trincomalee on escort duties.
The French Force
de Raide, battleships DUNKERQUE and STRASBOURG, light cruisers
GLOIRE and GEORGES LEYGUES, destroyers MOGADOR, TERRIBLE,AUDACIEUX, TIGRE, LYNX, MARS departed
Brest on the 23rd. On
24 April, destroyer TIGRE, LYNX, MARS attacked
a submarine contact. The force passed Gibraltar on the 27th and
arrived at Mer el Kebir later that day. French destroyers TIGRE, LYNX, MARS arrived
at Gibraltar. Destroyers TIGRE and LYNX departed later
that day for Algiers, arriving 28 April.
French Amiral Estava (Admiral South) transferred his headquarters from Toulon to Bizerte on the 30th.
The four Swedish
destroyers passed Gibraltar en route from
Cartagena to Lisbon.
departed Rio de Janiero to attempt to return to Europe.En route, she was
ordered to replenish armed merchant cruiser WIDDER.
Sunday, 28 April
ARK ROYAL launched air strikes on Trondheim without
achieving any significant results. She withdrew for refuelling that evening
at Scapa Flow where she arrived on 1 May. Following
refuelling, ARK ROYAL departed on 4 May for operations off northern Norway.
CODRINGTON (D.1) and ARDENT departed Bogen for Skelfjord. Destroyer CODRINGTON
carried out a reconnaissance of the Narvik area with General Bethouart and
Brigadier Fraser on board. She bombarded an anti-aircraft battery, a railway
viaduct, machine gun posts. On 29 April at 1400, destroyers CODRINGTON and
ESCAPADE departed Skelfjord to escort tanker INVERARDER to Scapa Flow.
IVANHOE, ICARUS, IMPULSIVE departed Scapa Flow at 1600 to
carry out minelaying operation ZMA in the Trondheim Leads. This was completed
at 2330/29th. The destroyers retired towards the Humber, but were
diverted en route at 1237 to Scapa Flow for escort
duties. They arrived at 0740 on 1 May. Destroyers ESK, EXPRESS, INTREPID were
substituted on 1 May for them at Immingham. These destroyers departed Scapa Flow at 0540 on 1
May arriving in the Humber at 2030.
departed Scapa Flow at 1400 with dispatches for Namsos and
DELIGHT, DIANA, IMPERIAL arrived at Scapa Flow at 1900.
INGLEFIELD departed the Clyde at 2030 for
Scapa Flow to arrive at
FIREDRAKE arrived in the Clyde at 1700 to join
the Home Fleet after refitting at Cardiff.
WANDERER, ANTELOPE, ACHERON, WALKER, WESTCOTT departed the Clyde for Scapa Flow to arrive at
WALLACE and VALOROUS departed Rosyth at 0715. Destroyer VALOROUS was detached
to search for a submarine reported by air in 58‑31N, 2‑38W. Destroyer
WALLACE and troopship ORION (23,371grt) arrived at Scapa Flow at 1530 and
sailed for Rosyth at 1700. Later, both destroyers were recalled to Scapa Flow.
destroyers INDOMPTABLE, MALIN, TRIOMPHANT of the 8th Large Destroyer Division
departed Rosyth. The first two ultimately for the Mediterranean and TRIOMPHANT
for repairs at Lorient.
Anti-Submarine Striking Force of trawlers CAPE SIRETOKO (Lt A.A.F. Talbot,
SO), ARGYLLSHIRE, NORTHERN PRIDE, WISTARIA departed Aberdeen on the 24th and
arrived at Molde late on the 27th. Anti-submarine trawler CAPE SIRETOKO
(590grt, Lt Cdr A.N. Harding (ret)) was badly damaged by German bombing at
Aandalsnes and ran aground to prevent sinking.She was later salved by German
forces and renamed Vp.6113 (trawler GOTE) for their use. In the same attack,
anti-submarine trawler WISTARIA of the 19th Anti-Submarine Striking Force was
damaged by bombing. The trawler was run aground to prevent sinking, but was
salved. The trawlers were able to departed Molde after the evacuation on the
At 0200, the
16th Anti-Submarine Striking Force
(trawlers ASTON VILLA (SO, 546grt), GAUL (550grt), ANGLE
(531grt), ARAB (531grt)) arrived at Namsos to join 15th Anti-Submarine
Striking Force (trawlers CAPE PASSARO (SO, 510grt),
ST GORAN (565grt), ST KENAN (565grt), ST LOMAN (565grt). These trawlers
remained at Namsos until after the evacuation on 2/3 May. Trawler ARAB was
ordered alongside Anti-aircraft cruiser CARLISLE (Flagship Rear
Admiral J. G. P. Vivian, 20th Cruiser Squadron) which had supplies for the
French troops aboard the trawler.
On 28 April,
Temporary S/Lt P. Collingwood RNVR, was killed in an air attack on cruiser
Sloop BLACK SWAN
was badly damaged by German bombing in Romdalsfjord at 1550. The bomb passed
through the stern before exploding. Little damage was done and the ship
remained in action until the last attacked ended. Sloop BLACK SWAN was
relieved by sloop FLEETWOOD that night, which departed Scapa Flow at 2100/27th. Sloop
BLACK SWAN arrived at Scapa Flow at 1345/30th
with only twenty nine rounds of anti-aircraft ammunition left.She was given
temporary repairs by depot ship WOOLWICH. Sloop BLACK SWAN departed Scapa Flow at 1930 on 2
May and arrived Falmouth at 1500 on 4
May for repairs completed in late May.
Voelcker relieved Captain J.S. Bethell as S.6.
AMAZONE arrived at Harwich after patrol.
ACHILLE arrived at Dundee after patrol.
SWORDFISH arrived at Blyth after patrol.
TETRARCH arrived at Rosyth.
ANTIOPE departed Harwich on patrol.
SEALION and SUNFISH departed Harwich to patrol in Bohus Bay.
WARSPITE arrived at the Clyde from Scapa Flow with destroyers
INGLEFIELD, ECHO, FOXHOUND.
Convoy TS 2 of
two ships departed Cardiff for the Clyde at 1130
escorted by anti-submarine trawler ST CATHAN (565grt).
proceeded to Dover and went
alongside depot ship SANDHURST for repairs to
dynamos and steering gear. Repairs were completed on the 29th.
destroyer BROKE, on passage to Devonport, ran aground 1.3 miles 189° from
Goodwin Knoll Buoy. Tugs LADY BRASSEY and DORIA and destroyer VERITY
(Captain D 19 (KEITH out of action)) proceeded to assist destroyer BROKE. The
destroyer was refloated on the tide at 1230 and continued to Devonport.
Destroyer BROKE sustained no damage in the grounding.
During the night
of 28/29 April, submarine H.32 escorted by sloop FOXGLOVE and French
submarine RUBIS escorted by sloop ROSEMARY anchored off Dungeness due to fog.
During 29 April, the ships proceeded to the Downs, but had to
remain during the night of 29/30 April. Patrol sloop SHELDRAKE from Harwich
was in the Downs to relieve sloop ROSEMARY of the RUBIS
after being delayed more than a day by fog, departed Southend, escorted by
destroyers WESTMINSTER and WOLSEY. Further
hampered by fog, the convoy arrived in two sections. The first arrived at
Rosyth, escorted by destroyer WESTMINSTER on the 30th.
The second half arrived on 1 May, escorted by destroyer WOLSEY. Convoy FN.157
MALAYA and ROYAL SOVEREIGN, from the Halifax Escort Force, departed Gibraltar
at 1600 escorted by destroyers VELOX, WATCHMAN, VENDETTA, WATERHEN to
reinforce the Mediterranean Fleet. Destroyer VENDETTA had arrived
from Malta on the 25th.
Destroyer WATERHEN had arrived earlier on the 28th with transport DILWARA. Shortly
before the sailing, destroyer VENDETTA attacked a submarine contact 6½ miles
142° from Cape Trafalgar. Destroyer VELOX joined in the
search, but no further results were made. The British ships were joined on
the 29th by French battleships LORRAINE, BRETAGNE, PROVENCE from Algiers,
heavy cruisers TOURVILLE and DUQUESNE, light cruiser DUGUAY TROUIN,
destroyers LION, LYNX, FORBIN from
Mer el Kebir. On 30 April, Australian destroyers STUART and VAMPIRE joined
the escort force, as later did light cruiser ORION and destroyers DEFENDER
and DECOY from Malta. This force
passed Malta on 1 May and
arrived at Alexandria at 1820 on 3
and WATCHMAN arrived back at Gibraltar on 4 May.
Monday, 29 April
FURIOUS and destroyers IMOGEN, ISIS, ILEX arrived in the Clyde at 0700 after
being delayed by fog.
VALIANT with destroyers FURY, FORTUNE, ESCORT, ENCOUNTER departed Scapa Flow at 2100 to give
anti-aircraft protection to aircraft carrier ARK ROYAL and Operation ZEAL,
the bombardment of the approaches to Trondheim. However, this
operation was cancelled before it began.
trawler CAPE CHELYUSKIN (494grt, Skipper H.E. Moran RNR) of the 12th
Anti-Submarine Group was sunk by German bombing at Aandalsnes.
Lt H. Roach
RNR, was wounded. The
crew returned to Scapa Flow in destroyer MASHONA on 3 May.
GLASGOW with destroyers JACKAL and JAVELIN departed Scapa Flow on the 28th at
2030. The ships arrived at Molde at 2130/29th to take aboard the King
of Norway, his government, some 795 cases of gold (23grt) for transport to
Tromso. In addition, 117 survivors from sunken anti-submarine trawlers BRADMAN, HAMMOND, LARWOOD,
CAPE SIRETOKO, CAPE CHELYUSKIN were embarked
for transport back to England. However, not
all of the gold could be embarked on GLASGOW in time. The
remaining gold was embarked on Norwegian fishing vessels STOLVAG and ALFHILD.
The light cruiser arrived at Tromso on the evening of 1 May and was escorted
into port by Norwegian fishery protection vessel HEIMDAL. The King of Norway
and his government were landed at Tromso. The fishing vessels safely arrived
at Tromso on 9 May.
BEAGLE and VOLUNTEER arrived at Scapa Flow at 0545 from
GUNVOR MAERSK disembarked the 166th Antiaircraft Battery and KIMBERLEY and BRAZEN
disembarked troops at Namsos. The steamer escorted by destroyers WOLVERINE,
BRAZEN, KIMBERLEY and naval
trawlers HAZEL (530grt) and WHITETHORN (530grt) departed Namsos during the
early morning. The British ships were bombed from 1621 to 2008/28th, but no
damage was done.
NUBIAN and ASHANTI arrived at
Scapa Flow at 0900.
departed Scapa Flow for Rosyth at 0400. Destroyer VALOROUS
departed Scapa Flow for Rosyth at 0700.
destroyers BRESTOIS and BOULONNAIS departed Namsos for Scapa Flow with French
steamers AMIENOIS (3713grt) and SAUMUR (2955grt) which were carrying 840
FAULKNOR departed Bogen for Ballengen where she embarked troops to be landed
at west of Haavik, near Ankenes.En route she towed Norwegian trawler SOLBIN.
The troops were landed without incident.
KELLY, MAORI, IMPERIAL and French destroyer BISON (Capitaine de Vaisseau
J.A.R. Bouan) departed Scapa Flow at 2000 with French armed merchant cruisers
EL D'JEZAIR (5818grt), EL MANSOUR (5818grt), EL KANTARA (5079grt) for the
evacuation of Namsos. Heavy cruisers DEVONSHIRE (Flagship Vice
Admiral John Cunningham) and YORK, French light
cruiser MONTCALM (Flagship Contre Amiral Derrien, Capitaine de Vaisseau J. L.
de Corbiere), destroyers GRENADE, GRIFFIN, HASTY departed
Flow at 2100 to support. Destroyers NUBIAN, AFRIDI, FOUDROYANT
departed Scapa Flow later and joined the forces at sea.
AMAZON and WITHERINGTON were escorting convoy TM.1 as it returned to Scapa Flow from Aandalsnes.
West of the Shetlands, destroyer MOHAWK was detached to Sullom Voe for
refuelling. Destroyer MOHAWK arrived Sullom Voe at 0900/30th and went on to
Scapa Flow arriving at
0600 on 1 May. From 61‑35N, 00‑36E to 62‑54N, 01‑56W,
destroyers AMAZON and WITHERINGTON, escorting convoy TM.1, attacked at 1445
and claimed sinking U.14, which was returning to Germany. The submarine
sustained only light damage. Wooden battens and a small stool came to the
surface, but could not be recovered due to German aircraft in the area. Destroyer
WITHERINGTON was damaged on the 29th by German bombing. The damage only
required three days to repair.
arrived safely at Scapa Flow at 0505 on 1
sloop AUCKLAND departed Scapa Flow to relieve
sloop FLEETWOOD, out of ammunition, at Romdalsfjord. The Admiralty then
ordered anti-aircraft cruiser CALCUTTA to join AUCKLAND and share the
anti-aircraft guard in view of the ever worsening German air attacks. Early
on the 30th, sloop FLEETWOOD left Romdalsfjord with 340 troops returning to
departed Rosyth at 1400 for Namsos.
departed Scapa Flow at 1530 for Dundee for docking to
make good defects to underwater fittings.
(Lt F. J. Brooks), departing Blyth on patrol,was sunk in an accidental
collision with Norwegian steamer ATLE JARL (1173grt) in convoy MT.61 near
Blyth in 55‑13N, 1‑19W, Lt J.N.A. Low, the first lieutenant,
three ratings were lost on UNITY. Twenty three crew were
Sloop GRIMSBY assisted and
stood by the site. Destroyer WALLACE brought deep sea diving gear from Rosyth.
Minesweepers GOSSAMER and LEDA anchored to northward of the rescue sight on 1
May. They departed at 2210 on 2 May to coal in the Tyne. On 1 May,
destroyer VALENTINE standing by at the site was relieved by sloop EGRET which
was soon relieved by destroyer WHITLEY. On 2 May, the search for survivors
still on board the submarine was abandoned.
SNAPPER departed Harwich for submarine TRIDENT's station in Bohus Bay.
submarines CIRCE and CALYPSO departed Harwich on patrol.
Submarine SEVERN departed Dundee on patrol.
departed Southend, escorted by sloops HASTINGS and LONDONDERRY. The convoy was
forced to anchor in heavy fog. Destroyers VIMIERA and VIVIEN relieved the
sloops and arrived with the convoy in the Tyne. The convoy
arrived in the Tyne on 1 May.
departed Methil, escorted by sloops LONDONDERRY and HASTINGS. The convoy was
forced to anchor due to fog, but was able to arrive in the Tyne on the 30th.
escorting convoy HG.27 was in a collision with steamer ARLETTA
(4870grt), formerly of convoy HG.27, in 48-58N, 6-37W at 0001/29th west of
Ushant. The sloop was
able to proceed to Plymouth at five knots.
The after cabin flat was flooded between 102 and 113. The sloop was repaired
at Plymouth from 3 May to 8
consisting of French liners DEGRASSE (18435grt) and MASSILIA (15363grt),
departed Brest on the 26th.
They arrived at Greenock on the 29th escorted by French
destroyers CYCLONE, MISTRAL, SIROCCO, but the troops were disembarked at
Glasgow on 1 May. The
French destroyers departed the Clyde the next day to
return to Brest.
consisting of French steamers VILLE DE MAJUNA (4792grt), ROSE SCHIAFFINO
(3349grt), CAP HADID (1700grt), departed Brest on the 27th and
arrived at Greenock on the 29th escorted by French sloops
CHAMOIS and COMMANDANT DELAGE and minelayer POLLUX. The cargo was disembarked
on 1 May. Steamers VILLE DE MAJUNA and CAP HADID departed
the Clyde for Brest on 22 May escorted by anti-submarine trawler LEEDS UNITED
(405grt) and ARSENAL (398grt).
steamer ORLAND (1899grt) was sunk by German bombing at Midsund.
BEGONIA (1591grt) was badly damaged by German bombing at Flaam in
Aurlandsfjord. One crewman was killed in the bombing. BEGONIA was
sunk by Norwegian military authorities.
steamer BRAND IV (343grt), en route from Aalesund to Veblunges, was damaged
by German bombing.
MARTTI RAGNAR (3989grt) ran aground and was stranded while proceeding from
Bergen with a prize
crew. The steamer had been renamed HERRENWYK for German service.
destroyers carried out sweeps off the Belgian and Dutch coasts as far as
Texel. The destroyers
returned to port on the 30th.
departed Gibraltar with twenty five ships. The convoy was
given ocean escort by sloops WELLINGTON and ABERDEEN from 29 April
to 6 May. Destroyer WHITEHALL and sloop ROCHESTER were the
escorts in Home Waters from 6 to 9 May. On 6 May, the convoy split into HG.28
and HG.28 B. The latter section was escorted by sloop ROCHESTER. Convoy HG.28
arrived at Liverpool on 9 May.
MARS, which had arrived at Gibraltar on the 27th to
escort British troopship DILWARA, departed Gibraltar on the 29th to
return to Toulon. The troopship
was ordered to remain at Gibraltar.
LIVERPOOL arrived at
Aden to join the Red
Sea Force, 4th Cruiser Squadron, East Indies Station.
refitting at Singapore, light cruiser
CERES departed Singapore for duty in the
4th Cruiser Squadron in the East Indies. Light cruiser
departed Singapore about this time
being reassigned from the 5th Cruiser Squadron, China Force, to the 4th
Cruiser Squadron, East Indies Station.
cruiser HOBART escorted the 2nd Minesweeping Flotilla in the Red Sea on its voyage
to the Mediterranean from the China Force. The 2nd
Minesweeping Flotilla arrived at Alexandria on the 29th for
duty with the Mediterranean Fleet.
Tuesday, 30 April
17 was laid west of Jutland by German
minelayers ROLAND, PREUSSEN, COBRA and escorted by destroyers BEITZEN and
HEINEMANN and torpedo boats WOLF, KONDOR, MOEWE, LEOPARD. En route, German
minelayer PREUSSEN accidently collided with and sank German torpedo boat LEOPARD. Torpedo boat WOLF picked up survivors from the torpedo boat LEOPARD.
On this minefield on 1 May, Swedish steamer HAGA (1296grt) was sunk at the
west entrance to the Skagerrak. Four crew on
the Swedish steamer were lost.Twelve survivors were picked up by German U.30
on 3 May.
destroyer MAILLE BREZE was sunk at 1415 in an accidental explosion at Tail of
Bank at Greenock while taking on ammunition. The ship's
torpedo tubes were trained fore and aft and one of the torpedoes was
accidently discharged, exploding on the bridge. Personnel from aircraft
carrier FURIOUS, destroyer FIREDRAKE, boom defense vessel BARFIELD assisting
in the rescue of the survivors. Six crew were killed and twenty seven were
missing in the destroyer. Forty seven crew were wounded. The survivors left
the Clyde on 2 May in French sloops CHAMOIS and
Destroyer ASHANTI departed Scapa Flow at 1000 for
repairs at Dundee.
VANESSA departed Dover for refitting
VANSITTART departed Invergordon at 0600 with tanker WAR NIZAM for Scapa Flow, arriving at
after embarking mines at Immingham, departed the Humber on minelaying
mission FD.7 in the Kattegat.
STURGEON departed Blyth on patrol to
relieve submarine TRITON off Skudesnes.
PORPOISE arrived at Rosyth after patrol.
bombing attacks on British shipping at Aandalsnes, anti-submarine trawlers
JARDINE (452grt, Lt K.B. Hopkins RNVR) and WARWICKSHIRE (466grt, Cdr Y.M.
Cleeves RNR) of the 22nd Anti-Submarine Group were
sunk. They were later salved by German forces as Vp.6117 (trawler CHERUSKER)
and Vp.6114 (trawler ALAME), respectively.
Skipper S.J. Cory RNR of JARDINE was
DUNOON (Lt Cdr H A Barclay) and ELGIN of the 4th
Minesweeping Flotilla were minesweeping from 29 April after steamer CREE was damaged.
DUNOON was recovering a parted mine sweep when she struck a mine off Great
Yarmouth in 52‑45N, 2‑23E in the minefield laid by German
minelayer Schiff 11 on 2 April. The four inch ammunition magazine exploded
and she sank in 40 minutes. Lt Cdr Barclay, Lt J H C Torr RNR, Temporary S/Lt
R A Hill RNVR and twenty five ratings were lost with five ratings wounded.
CARLISLE and sloop
BITTERN were stationed at Namsos as anti-aircraft guard ships. Antiaircraft
cruiser CARLISLE had departed temporarily on the 28th to
refuel and returned during a heavy German air attack on the 30th. Sloop
BITTERN was bombed and badly damaged in her stern during this attack in 64‑28N,
11‑30E. Seventeen ratings were killed and three missing in the attack
in the attack.Eleven ratings were wounded. Destroyer JANUS took off the
wounded from BITTERN and later scuttled the sloop. Anti-submarine trawlers ST GORAN (Lt Cdr N.C. McGuigan
RNR), ASTON VILLA
(Lt Cdr Sir G.C. Congreve, Bt), GAUL (Temporary Lt
H.M. Duff-Still RNVR) were badly damaged by German bombing at Namsos. McGuigan
and three ratings were killed on ST GORAN. Destroyer JANUS, en route up the
fjord, sent her medical officer to assist ST GORAN's wounded.Two hours later,
anti-aircraft cruiser CARLISLE arrived and
took the survivors aboard survivors, less Lt P.W. Clark, BITTERN's Navigator,
which remained on JANUS.
RESOLUTION arrived at Tromso.
BELLEROPHON (9019grt) and LYCAON (7350grt) were brought to the Clyde arriving at
1830/27th by destroyer WESTCOTT. Destroyers ISIS, IMOGEN, ILEX departed the
Clyde at 0830
escorting these steamers for Narvik.
destroyer SLEIPNER departed Scapa Flow at 1330 for a
refit in the Tyne, but was diverted to Rosyth due to
During the night
of 30 April/1 May, the evacuation of Aandalsnes and Molde, codenamed
Operations TUNNEL and BRICK No.1, respectively, began under the command of
Vice Admiral Sir G. F. B. Edward-Collins KCVO, CB. Light cruisers ARETHUSA
and GALATEA and destroyer WALKER, WANDERER, WESTCOTT departed Scapa Flow at 1700/29th. Destroyers
SOMALI, MASHONA, TARTAR with troopships ULSTER MONARCH (3791grt) and ULSTER PRINCE
(3791grt) departed Scapa Flow at 1230/29th. Destroyer
SIKH departed Scapa Flow at 1540/29th to join this force. Molde
was evacuated by troopship ULSTER PRINCE escorted
by destroyer TARTAR from 2300/30th to 0100 on 1 May. Aandalsnes was evacuated
by light cruisers GALATEA and ARETHUSA which embarked troops at the pier and
destroyer WALKER and WESTCOTT which embarked troops and ferried them to light
cruiser SHEFFIELD in the harbour. Troopship ULSTER MONARCH
accompanied this force, but returned empty because the first night's quota
had been filled by the cruisers. Light cruiser ARETHUSA was the first ship to
leave the area at about 0100 and the others followed soon after. Destroyers
SIKH and WANDERER at Alfarnes, six miles north of Aandalsnes, lifted troops
and ferried them to nearby light cruiser SOUTHAMPTON. While there was no
enemy resistance to the operation, WANDERER went aground and SIKH had to tow
her off. Destroyer WANDERER was repaired at London from 6 to 29
May. At Verblungsnes, across the mouth of the Romsdal River, destroyers
MASHONA, WALKER, WESTCOTT
picked up the surviving troops of the PRIMROSE force.WALKER and WESTCOTT not
leaving until 0315 in order to pick up the rear guard units. As the force
left the Fjord, they were attacked by German bombers, but anti-aircraft fire
forced the bombers to drop their bombs ineffectively. Destroyer SIKH and
troopships ULSTER PRINCE and
ULSTER MONARCH arrived at Scapa Flow at 1235 on 2
May. Light cruiser SOUTHAMPTON and destroyers WESTCOTT and WALKER arrived at
Sullom Voe during the afternoon of 1 May. Light cruiser SOUTHAMPTON
transferred 350 troops to destroyer WESTCOTT, which then proceeded to Scapa Flow arriving at
0800 on 2 May. Light cruiser SOUTHAMPTON and destroyer WALKER were to have
returned to Aandalsnes, but the operation was cancelled when it was found
that German troops arrived in the town during the day. Light cruiser SHEFFIELD arrived at
Scapa Flow at 0600. Light
cruiser SOUTHAMPTON and destroyer WALKER arrived at Scapa Flow at 1515 on 2
GALATEA and ARETHUSA arrived at Scapa Flow at 0208 and
0231, respectively on 2 May.
WARSPITE departed the Clyde at 2020
escorted by destroyers HERO, FOXHOUND, FIREDRAKE for Gibraltar and duty with
the Mediterranean Fleet. The destroyers arrived back in the Clyde after the
escort at 1600 on 2 May.
aircraft carrier GLORIOUS with destroyers ACHERON, ANTELOPE, BEAGLE,
VOLUNTEER departed Scapa Flow to fly on
aircraft and rendezvous with the aircraft carrier ARK ROYAL.
VOLUNTEER arrived at Sullom Voe at 2330 to make good defects before going to
Scapa Flow. Entering the
anchorage, she fouled the indicator nets. The nets were cleared by the
attendant boom boat with no damage to the destroyer and little damage to the
Destroyer KIMBERLEY, escorting
Danish steamer GUNVOR MAERSK, was ordered at 2034 to Sullom Voe to embark
ammunition from destroyer JUNO, which was
experiencing defects, then join aircraft carrier ARK ROYAL in JUNO's place.
MARGAUX (1463grt) escorted by French auxiliary patrol ship HEUREUX (1016grt)
arrived in the Clyde. The patrol ship departed the Clyde on 1 May to
return to Brest.
ATHELSTAN (202grt) was sunk by German bombing in the North Sea.
The German 2nd
S-Boat Flotilla, off Norway since the start
of the Norwegian campaign, was ordered to Wilhelmshaven to prepare for
the operations in the North Sea. The lst S-Boat
Flotilla remained for coastal defense; three units based at Sognefjord and
two at Bergen. They departed to return to Germany on 14 May.
departed Liverpool, escorted by sloop LEITH from 30 April
to 3 May when she was detached to convoy HX.37.
departed the Tyne. The convoy arrived at Southend on 1
VALKYRIEN departed Lisbon and was taken
in prise by destroyer KEPPEL and taken to Gibraltar.
departed Halifax at 1000
escorted by Canadian destroyers RESTIGOUCHE and ST LAURENT. At 1400 on 1
May, the destroyers turned the convoy over to Armed merchant cruiser VOLTAIRE
and French submarine ARCHIMEDE. The armed merchant cruiser and the submarine
were detached on 11 May. On 12 May, sloop ENCHANTRESS and corvette GLADIOLUS
joined the convoy and escorted it until its arrival at Liverpool on 15 May.
DURBAN arrived at
destructor ship BURLINGTON was damaged by
the explosion of a mine in the Scapa Flow area at the end
of April. The ship departed Scapa Flow on 5 May in tow
of tug MARAUDER and escorted by anti-submarine trawlers PRESTON NORTH END and
LINCOLN CITY at 1330. The
ship was repaired at the Clyde from 2 June to
One more French
troop convoy and one more French supply convoy were organized for the
Norwegian campaign. Convoy FP.5, consisting of French liners KOUTOBIA
(8790grt), CHANTILLY (9986grt), COMPIEGNE (9986grt), EXPLORATEUR GRANDIDIER
(10268grt), departed Brest on 8 May escorted by destroyers GUEPARD, LEOPARD,
VALMY and arrived at Greenock on 10 May. The troops were disembarked at Greenock on 14 May, but
were reembarked. On 16 May, the convoy left the Clyde escorted by
French destroyer EPERVIER and Patrol vessels JASON and GLEANER and returned
to Brest on 19 May. Convoy FS.5 of steamers
SAINT CAMILLE, CERES, CAP TAFELNEH,
DUPLEIX, MONIQUE SCHIAFFINO and convoy FS.6 of steamers SAINT CYRILLE and
FORMIGNY did not leave Brest and the sailing
of the convoys was cancelled on 15 May.
and LADYBIRD departed Alexandria for Malta. En route, they
ran into heavy weather south of Crete. Light cruiser
DRAGON was sent to assist. Cruiser DRAGON took gunboat LADYBIRD in tow due to
the gunboat being almost out of fuel and having damage to her starboard
propeller shaft. When the weather abated, the two gunboats were able to
proceed on their own and arrived at Malta. Gunboat
LADYBIRD was repaired and refitted at Malta completed in
six weeks. Light cruiser DRAGON departed Malta after
completing her escort duties on the 23rd.
continued the destroyer patrol off Cadiz with DOUGLAS on 5 April,
WISHART on the 8th, VELOX on the 13th, ACTIVE on the 17th and 18th, and
VENDETTA on the 26th and 27th.