Background Events - September-December 1940
packs in Atlantic, Blitz on Britain, Attack on Taranto, German raiders at sea
Friday, 15 November
Operation STRIPE, aircraft carrier FURIOUS departed Liverpool with 34
Hurricanes of 73 Squadron and 3 Fulmars. The aircraft carrier joined
anti-aircraft cruiser DIDO which departed the Clyde also for Takarodi.
British steamer NEW ZEALAND STAR departed with the aircraft carrier and
destroyers HAVELOCK and HESPERUS escorted the ships from Liverpool.
cruisers MANCHESTER, which had just completed a refit at Rosyth, and
SOUTHAMPTON departed Scapa Flow. At Gibraltar they would embark troops
carried in troopship FRANCONIA. They were joined by destroyers JAGUAR and
KELVIN from Plymouth. British steamers CLAN FORBES, CLAN FRASER, FRANCONIA
also proceeded to Gibraltar.
two forces rendezvoused in North Channel and escorted the merchant ships to
Aircraft carrier FURIOUS arrived at Freetown, escorted by destroyers
FOXHOUND and FORTUNE, on the 25th. FURIOUS arrived at Takoradi on the 27th
and the aircraft flown off to Takoradi on the 29th.
Aircraft carrier FURIOUS arrived back at Liverpool on 15 December.
Anti-aircraft cruiser NAIAD (Rear Admiral, 15th Cruiser Squadron) departed
Scapa Flow on the 11th. On the 13th, the cruiser was detached from the
battlecruiser REPULSE group to raid the wireless station in Jameson Bay on
Jan Mayan Island.
raid was covered by battlecruiser REPULSE and destroyers SIKH, MATABELE,
15th, the cruiser arrived and the wireless station was burnt.
British naval trawlers ELM (530grt) and WISTARIA (515grt) arrived from
Iceland for support on the 16th.
16th, light cruiser NAIAD chased and drove ashore German trawler HINRICH
ships returned to Scapa Flow at 0015/19th.
Cruiser NAIAD was weather damaged in this operation.
FN.335 departed Southend, escorted by destroyers VERDUN and WOLSEY. The
convoy arrived at Methil on the 17th.
FS.336 departed Methil, escorted by destroyers WALLACE and WESTMINSTER. The
convoy arrived at Southend on the 17th.
Minelaying cruiser ADVENTURE laid a series of minefields.
15th, designated ZME.1.
20th, designated ZME.2.
November, designated ZME.3.
December, off Little Sole Bank, designated GQ 1.
1, minelayer ADVENTURE departed Milford Haven at 1000 on 1 December. She
rendezvoused with destroyer KASHMIR and KIPLING off Hartland Point. At 1345,
destroyer JUPITER joined.
1730, the escort was sent to Plymouth. The minefield was laid at 0318 to
0358. The minelayer arrived back at Milford Haven at 1730 on 2 December.
December, designated ZME.4.
December, designated ZME.5.
December, designated ZME.6.
December, designated ZME.7.
December, designated ZME.8.
December, designated ZME.9.
December, designated GQ 2.
Operation GQ 2 was originally set for 5 December, but was cancelled due to
Minelayer ADVENTURE departed Milford Haven at 1000 on 29 december and met
destroyers JERSEY, JUPITER, KASHMIR off Trevose Head. The mines were laid
the minelayer arrived back at Milford Haven at 1700 on 30 December.
January, designated ZME.10.
to ZME.14 were conducted in the first two weeks of January.
January, designated ZME.15.
Cruiser ADVENTURE conducted sixteen operations in sixty days.
cruiser, returning from ZME.15, was badly damaged on 16 January entering
Liverpool Bay when she struck a mine.
Minelayer PLOVER took over the ZME.minelays beginning with ZME.16. The
series was completed with ZME.31 on 21 April.
Anti-aircraft cruiser CURACOA transferred to convoy WN.37 and escorted it
from Pentland Firth to Buchanness.
Destroyer VIMY departed Scapa Flow at 0930 for Lerwick.
Lerwick, destroyer VIMY joined British steamer BEN MY CHREE and escorted her
steamer arrived off Aberdeen at 0303 on the 16th and destroyer VIMY
continued on to Rosyth.
Destroyer SOUTHDOWN called at Holyhead at 1130 to land passengers.
she encountered Armed patrol trawler LORD COLLINGWOOD (116grt) at 2035 and
took her in tow towards the Clyde. Destroyer SOUTHDOWN arrived with the
trawler in tow on the 16th.
Destroyer SOUTHDOWN oiled at the Clyde. She departed at 1515/16th and
arrived at Scapa Flow at 0930/17th.
British raid on Barley airfield, Lt T. G. Bentley and P/Sub Lt (A) A. R. J.
Davis RNVR, in a SWORDFISH of 812 Squadron from DAEDALUS were shot down and
made prisoners of war.
sank British steamer KOHINUR (5168grt) and Norwegian tanker HAVBOR (7614grt)
in 4‑24N, 13‑46W.
six crew and two gunners were lost on steamer KOHINUR. One crewman was made
a prisoner of war.
one prisoner of war was transferred to supply ship NORDMARK when U.65
refuelled at sea on 28 and 29 November.
Nineteen crew were lost from the Norwegian tanker. Four crew were rescued.
British steamer AMENITY (297grt) was sunk on a mine in 53‑33N, 00‑09E.
entire crew of seven was rescued.
British steamer APAPA (9333grt, convoy Commodore Rear Admiral G. H. Knowles
DSO Rtd was sunk from convoy SL.53 by German bombing in 54‑34N, 16‑47W.
Anti-submarine trawler ST APOLLO (580grt) stood by the steamer.
Eighteen crew and five passengers were missing from the steamer. Survivors
from the steamer were rescued by British steamers MARY KINGSLEY (4017grt)
and NEW COLUMBIA (6574grt).
British steamer BLUE GALLEON (712grt), in convoy FN.34, was sunk by German
bombing in 52‑57N, 01‑56E.
crew were lost on the steamer.
British trawler DUNGENESS (263grt, P/T/Skipper C. W. Neesham RNR) was badly
damaged by German bombing at Haisborough and considered a constructive total
were no casualties on the trawler.
British tug GUARDSMAN (102grt) was sunk on a mine off North Foreland, one
half cable east by northeast of Spit Buoy.
crew were lost on the tug.
operation BARBARITY, Heavy cruisers BERWICK and YORK and light cruisers
GLASGOW and GLOUCESTER of the 3rd Cruiser Squadron and light cruiser SYDNEY
departed Alexandria at 1500 with 3400 troops for Piraeus.
five cruisers arrived on the 16th at Piraeus.
cruisers ran twenty one hours at an average of thirty knots. After
disembarkation, the cruisers patrolled in the Aegean before arriving back at
Alexandria on the 18th.
cruisers ORION and AJAX departed Alexandria to take general control of the
operation and to call at Suda Bay, Pireaus, Candia as necessary. The
cruisers arrived at Piraeus on the 16th.
disembarking the troops, cruisers BERIWCK, GLOUCESTER, GLASGOW that day
departed for Alexandria. Heavy cruiser YORK departed that day for Port Said.
All arrived on the 17th.
Anti-aircraft cruiser COVENTRY with destroyers VAMPIRE, NUBIAN, MOHAWK
departed Alexandria on the 15th with steamers CLAN MACAULAY, IMPERIAL STAR,
NIEUW ZEELAND. Steamer JOAHNN DE WITT, escorted by destroyer WATERHEN,
departed Port Said on the 14th and joined the convoy at sea. The convoy
arrived at Piraeus on the 16th.
their return, destroyers VAMPIRE, MOHAWK, NUBIAN conducted an anti-submarine
sweep in the Aegean. Destroyer WATERHEN had been detached to Suda Bay to
refuel and rejoined before the destroyers arrived back at Alexandria on the
AN.7 of five transports carrying 830 men and 710 vehicles and a bulk petrol
carrier departed Alexandria and Port Said, escorted by trawlers,
anti-aircraft ship CALCUTTA, destroyer ILEX. The convoy was covered by
cruisers ORION and AJAX.
convoy arrived at Piraeus on the 19th. The trawlers returned to Suda Bay.
CALCUTTA and ILEX proceeded to Alexandria.
Battleships BARHAM and VALIANT, aircraft carrier EAGLE, destroyers HYPERION,
VENDETTA, DAINTY, DIAMOND, JERVIS, GREYHOUND, GALLANT, GRIFFIN departed
Alexandria early on the 16th to cover these movements.
covering force called at Suda Bay on the 17th. Later that day, engine
problems in battleship BARHAM forced The ships to return.
Greek troopships, escorted by eight Greek destroyers, departed Suda Bay at
1800/17th for Salonika. Anti-aircraft ship COVENTRY departed Pireaus and
joined this convoy on the 18th until arriving in the Petali Gulf. The
cruiser arrived back at Alexandria on the 19th. The convoy arrived on the
warships were back at Alexandria on the 19th.
H.of battlecruiser RENOWN, aircraft carriers ARK ROYAL and ARGUS, light
cruisers SHEFFIELD and DESPATCH, destroyers FAULKNOR, FORESTER, FURY,
WISHART, FIREDRAKE, FOXHOUND, FORTUNE, DUNCAN departed Gibraltar on
forces were divided into Force A with aircraft carrier ARGUS, light cruiser
DESPATCH, destroyers FAULKNOR, FORESTER, FIREDRAKE, FOXHOUND, FORTUNE.
was battlecruiser RENOWN, aircraft carrier ARK ROYAL, light cruiser
SHEFFIELD, destroyers FURY, WISHART, DUNCAN.
was a flyoff of Hurricanes from aircraft carrier ARGUS to Malta. Flyoff took
place on the 17th in two flights of six Hurricanes each, each lead by a
Fleet Air Arm Skua. Two Hurricanes crashed short of Malta in the first
flight; the pilot of one was rescued by a Sunderland Flying Boat. The rest
of this flight, the Skua and four Hurricanes, arrived at Malta. The second
flight was lost en route to Malta through a navigational error, with no
survivors from the Hurricanes. The Skua crashed landed on southwest coast of
Sicily. The pilot, Petty Officer (A) W. E. J. Stockwell, observer P/T/A/Sub
Lt (A) R. C. Neil were taken prisoner.
cruiser SHEFFIELD arrived back at Gibraltar on the 18th and the rest of
Force H.arrived back on the 19th.
Destroeyrs VIDETTE and WRESTLER departed Gibraltar to meet battleship ROYAL
SOVEREIGN, arriving from Freetown.
ships arrived at Gibraltar on the 18th.
cruiser COLOMBO was off Mogadishu in a patrol established on the 12th.
15th, COLOMBO bombarded merchant ships off Mogadishu and reported two hits.
18th, COLOMBO was bombed sixty miles east, northeast of Kismayu.
28th, COLOMBO was relieved on this station by light cruiser CERES.
Saturday, 16 November
cruiser NORFOLK completed repairs in the Tyne begun in October.
Anti-aircraft cruiser CURACOA transferred from convoy WN.38 to convoy EN.26
and escorted it to Pentland Firth.
Anti-aircraft ship ALYNBANK departed Scapa Flow at 0545 to meet convoy WN.38
in Pentland Firth and escorted it to Methil.
Destroyer SIKH was detached from the battlecruiser REPULSE's screen to
refuel at Skaalefjord.
destroyer refuelled and departed on the 17th to rejoin the force.
Hunt-class destroyer COTSWOLD was completed.
Destroyer COTSWOLD departed Greenock to work up at Scapa Flow. She arrived
at Scapa Flow at 1520/17th.
Following working up, the destroyer was assigned to the 21st Destroyer
Flotilla operating in the Nore.
destroyer BURZA accidently sank Anti-submarine trawler ARSENAL (550grt,
Skipper C. R. Radford RNR) in a collision off the Clyde, four miles south of
trawler sustained no casualties. Destroyer ARROW and tug SUPERMAN stood by.
Destroyer ARROW was damaged by the explosion of trawler ARSENAL's depth
charges. Repairs to her machinery were done in the Clyde, completing on 14
Destroyer BURZA was repaired in the Clyde completing on 27 January 1941.
sank British steamer FABIAN (3059grt) at 02‑49N, 15‑29W.
crew were lost on the steamer FABIAN.
sank British steamer PLANTER (5887grt) from convoy OB.244 in 55‑38N, 08‑38W.
crew and one DBS was lost on the British steamer.
bombers attacked convoy FS.335.
British steamer SHERBROOKE (2052grt) was damaged by German bombing eight
miles southeast of Orfordness.
British steamer DAGENHAM (2178grt) was damaged on a mine two and a half
cables east, northeast of Mouse Light Vessel.
Submarine TRIUMPH arrived at Gibraltar from England.
Zealand light cruiser ACHILLES departed Sydney to patrol off Auckland Island
on the 20th and Campbell Island on the 21st.
light cruiser arrived at Lyttleton on the 23rd.
steamers PHRYGIA (4137grt), IDARWALD (5181grt), RHEIN (6031grt) departed
Tampico in an attempt to return to Germany.
fourth German steamer, steamer ORINOCCO (9660grt) also departed Tampico, but
broke down near the mouth of the Rio Panuco which connects Tampico with Gulf
of Mexico. She was towed back to Tampico by the tug that was accompanying
her to sea.
American destroyers PLUNKETT (DD.431, LCDR P. G. Hale), MCCORMICK (DD.223,
CDR T. V. Cooper, CDD 63), BROOME (DD.210, LCDR T. E. Fraser) were on patrol
Immediately shadowed by the US destroyers, steamer PHRYGIA thought she had
been intercepted and scuttled herself.
unsuccessful attempts to throw off the US destroyers, steamers IDARWALD and
RHEIN arrived back at Tampico on the 18th.
Sunday, 17 November
British minefield BS.47 was laid by minelayer TEVIOTBANK and destroyer
Anti-aircraft ship ALYNBANK transferred from convoy WN.38 to EN.27 and then
to WN.39 off Buchanness.
Anti-aircraft cruiser CURACOA departed convoy WN.38 in Pentland Firth and
arrived at Scapa Flow at 0635/17th.
OB.244 departed Liverpool escorted by destroyers CASTLETON, VISCOUNT,
WHITEHALL, sloop SANDWICH, corvettes CYCLAMEN, HIBISCUS, RHODODENDRON. The
escort, less sloop SANDWICH, was detached on the 21st. Sloop SANDWICH was
detached on the 22nd.
FN.336 departed Southend, escorted by destroyer WOOLSTON and sloop
LOWESTOFT. The convoy arrived at Methil on the 19th.
FS.337 departed Methil, escorted by destroyers VALOROUS and VERSATILE. The
convoy arrived at Southend on 19November.
Destroyer DOUGLAS departed Liverpool at 1245 for Scapa Flow where she
arrived at 0730/18th.
Destroyer BURNHAM departed Plymouth at 1730 to work up at Scapa Flow.
destroyer arrived at Scapa Flow at 1645/19th.
Destroyer VIMY departed Rosyth for the Tyne to escort British steamer
Destroyer VIMY departed the Tyne at 1700/18th. At 0330/19th she rendezvoused
off May Island with Destroyer SOMALI and submarine depot ship TITANIA from
of Convoy WS.4B departed Liverpool on the 17th and units from Clyde departed
the next day. The two sections met on the 18th. The convoy was composed of
troopships ANDES (25,689grt), VICEROY OF INDIA (19,267grt), DUCHESS OF
ATHOLL (20,119grt), OTRANTO (20,026grt), ORCADES (23,456grt), STRATHALLAN
(23,772grt), STRATHAIRD (22,284grt), EMPRESS OF CANADA (21,517grt), REINA
DEL PACIFICO (17,702grt), STRATHNAVER (22,283grt). The convoy was escorted
by heavy cruiser DEVONSHIRE, which was relieved on the 20th by heavy cruiser
NORFOLK from Scapa Flow, light cruiser EDINBURGH from the Clyde and given
local escort by British and Canadian destroyers OTTAWA, SKEENA, ST LAURENT,
SAGUENAY, ST ALBANS, ST MARYS, BATH.
Officer H. G. Eves, Leading Supply Assistant R. N. Smith, Supply Assistant
K. Pimlott were killed when their Proctor crashed during an engine test near
in attacks on convoy OB.244 sank Swedish steamer VERONICA (1316grt) in
55‑20N, 08‑45W and British steamer SAINT GERMAIN (1044grt) in 55‑40N,
crew from the steamer VERONICA were rescued.
entire crew of the steamer SAINT GERMAIN were rescued.
HX.89 with twelve steamers departed Halifax at 1300 escorted by Canadian
destroyers COLUMBIA and ST FRANCIS and auxiliary patrol boats ELK and HUSKY.
Canadian destroyers departed the escort at 1715/18th. Ocean escort was armed
merchant cruiser COMORIN, which was detached on the 28th.
BHX.89 departed Bermuda on the 15th, but returned to Bermuda later that same
day and did not join HX.89.
28th, destroyer WARWICK and corvettes CAMPANULA, FLEUR DE LYS, PERIWINKLE
joined the convoy. On 29 November destroyer WANDERER and corvette CLEMATIS
joined. Corvette CAMPANULA was detached on the 30th. Anti-submarine trawler
HUDDERSFIELD TOWN escorted the convoy in Home Waters. The convoy arrived at
Liverpool on 1 December.
Monday, 18 November
Minelaying in St Georges Channel began to extend the SN.1 and SN.2
minefields. On the 18th, minelayers SOUTHERN PRINCE, AGAMEMNON, PORT QUEBEC,
PORT NAPIER, MENESTHEUS laid minefield SN.3 in the northwest approaches,
escorted by destroyers BRILLIANT, BULLDOG, BEAGLE.
destroyers had departed Scapa Flow at 1100/17th for Loch Alsh, arriving at
minelayers and destroyers departed Loch Alsh at 0110/18th for the
force arrived back at Loch Alsh at 1340/19th after the operation.
Australian heavy cruiser AUSTRALIA arrived at Liverpool.
Australian heavy cruiser AUSTRALIA was docked and refitting at Liverpool
from 22 November.
an air raid on Liverpool a 3000 pound dud bomb just missed the cruiser and
landed in the dry dock.
heavy cruiser was under repair until 27 December.
cruiser AUSTRALIA departed Liverpool on 29 December.
Anti-aircraft ship ALYNBANK transferred to convoy EN.28 at Methil. The
convoy was escorted to Pentland Firth.
OB.245 departed Liverpool escorted by destroyer SABRE and corvettes ASPHODEL
and PICOTEE and anti-submarine trawler VIZALMA. Corvettes ASPHODEL and
PICOTEE was detached later that day. On the 19th, destroyers MALCOLM and
SARDONYX, corvette HELIOTROPE and anti-submarine trawler WELLARD joined the
escort. On the 20th corvette MALLOW joined. The escort was detached on the
FN.337 departed Southend, escorted by destroyers WALLACE and WESTMINSTER.
The convoy arrived at Methil on the 20th.
FS.338 departed Methil, escorted by destroyer VIMIERA and sloop WESTON. The
convoy arrived at Southend on the 20th.
British Sub Lt (A) L. E. H. Scholefield, in a Whitley of RAF 502 Squadron
from Aldergrove, was killed when his aircraft ditched off Londonderry.
sank British tanker CONGONIA (5056grt) at 08‑21N, 16‑12W.
crewman was lost on the British tanker.
Italian submarine BARACCA sank British steamer LILIAN MOLLER (4866grt) from
dispersed convoy SLS.53 in 57‑00N, 17‑00W.
entire crew of the British steamer were lost.
British steamer NESTLEA (4274grt), which was a straggler from convoy SL.53,
was sunk by German bombing in 50‑38N, 10‑00W.
entire crew of the British steamer were rescued.
barge ABILITY (293grt) was sunk on a mine in 51‑45ZN, 01‑11E.
entire crew of seven were all rescued.
mine was laid by German torpedo boats on 29/30 October in minefield "Alfred.
British drifter GO AHEAD (100grt) was sunk in a collision at Sheerness.
bombers attacked convoy FN.337.
British steamer S. N. A. 8 (2569grt) was damaged by German bombing off Swin
British steamer LANGLEETARN (4908grt) was damaged by German bombing off
Norwegian steamer FAVORIT (2826grt) was damaged by German bombing in 52‑26N,
LOWESTOFT, escorting convoy FN.336 off Lowestoft, shot down a Heinkel
British steamer BIELA (5298grt) was damaged by German bombing in 52‑26N,
cruiser YORK departed Port Said with a battalion of troops for Suda Bay and
anti-aircraft guns for Piraeus.
cruiser arrived at Suda Bay on the 19th and departed that day for Piraeus.
guns were delivered and cruiser YORK departed Piraeus on the 20th.
10th, Heavy cruiser DORSETSHIRE turned over convoy WS.3 to Red Sea escorts.
The heavy cruiser then departed Aden for Durban.
operation ROPE on the 18th, Heavy cruiser DORSETSHIRE bombarded Dante,
British tanker EL NAWRAS (323grt) was damaged by Italian bombing at
Italian coastal steamer ARDITA IV (54grt) was sunk by Greek bombing at
BN.9 departed Aden, escorted by light cruiser LEANDER, destroyer KINGSTON,
sloops AUCKLAND, HINDUSTAN, SHOREHAM. Destroyer KINGSTON and sloop SHOREHAM
were detached on the 20th. Light cruiser LEANDER and the two remaining
sloops were detached on the 22nd. Sloop CLIVE joined on the 22nd and arrived
with the convoy at Suez on the 25th.
BS.9B departed Port Sudan, escotted by destroyer KIMBERLEY and sloop YARRA.
The convoy was joined on the 21st by sloop INDUS. The convoy was dispersed
off Aden on the 21st.
armed merchant cruiser PINGUIN sank British steamer NOWSHERA (7920grt) in
the Indian Ocean in 31‑02S, 100‑51E.
Europeans on the steamer were made prisoners of war.
Australian heavy cruiser CANBERRA was in the area returning to port after
searching for the ship that sank Norwegian tanker OLE JACOB, but no contact
Tuesday, 19 November
Anti-aircraft cruiser CURACOA departed Scapa Flow at 0845 to join convoy
WN.40. The convoy was attacked by German bombing at 1740. The attacking
planes were driven off by cruiser CURACOA's gunfire and escorting British
Destroyers COSSACK (D.4), MAORI, ESKIMO departed Scapa Flow at 0715 on
Operation DL, a sweep off the Norwegian coast commencing at 2135 in 63N and
passing Budgrunden Bank and Langgrunds Bank until 0200/20th when the course
was altered to the west.
one fishing boat was sighted and the weather was too rough to permit
destroyers arrived back at Scapa Flow at 0900/21st.
Destroyer PUNJABI departed Scapa Flow at 0115 to boiler clean at Rosyth.
destroyer arrived at Rosyth at 1100.
Destroyer BEDOUIN departed Portsmouth at 1700 to return to Scapa Flow after
destroyer arrived at Scapa Flow at 1400/21st.
Destroyer DOUGLAS departed Scapa Flow at 2130 to take over the escort of
British steamer KYLE FISHER and submarine depot ship TITANIA to the Clyde.
Destroyer SOMALI arrived at Scapa Flow.
Destroyers DOUGLAS and VIMY parted company with the convoy at 1600/21st.
destroyers arrived back at Scapa Flow at 1115/22nd.
Destroyers BEVERLEY and BROADWAY departed Plymouth at 1735 to work up at
destroyers arrived at Scapa Flow at 2130/21st.
Destroyers CAMPBELL and GARTH on patrol in the Thames Estuary attacked
German motor torpedo boats S 38, S 54, S 57 sinking S 38.
FS.339 departed Methil, escorted by destroyers VANITY and WOLFHOUND. The
convoy arrived at Southend on the 21st.
Minesweeping trawler FONTENOY (276grt, T/Skipper J. C. Coaker RNR) was sunk
by German bombing off Lowestoft in 52‑31N, 1‑55E.
were no casualties on the trawler.
OG.46 of thirty nine ships departed Liverpool, Clyde, Oban, Bristol with
Corvette CANDYTUFT from the Clyde and corvette CALENDULA from Oban escorting
the convoy from Home Waters.
Destroyer CALDWELL escorted the convoy from 19 to 24 November.
Corvette HONEYSUCKLE escorted the convoy from 19 to 24 November.
Corvette CALENDULA was relieved on the 20th by corvette BLUEBELL, which
remained with the convoy until 24 November.
Corvette CANDYTUFT escorted the convoy until 24 November.
DEPTFORD escorted the convoy from 19 November to 5 December.
Destroyer WESTCOTT escorted the convoy on the 22nd.
Gibraltar, the convoy was joined by destroyer WISHART on 3 December.
Destroyer WISHART escorted the convoy until its arrival at Gibraltar on 5
British steamer FOLDA (1165grt) was damaged by German bombing in 51‑47N,
cruiser NEWCASTLE, which departed Gibraltar on the 17th, arrived at Malta
with the 200 airmen and stores for Operation WHITE.
Cruiser NEWCASTLE was to have arrived at the same time as the aircraft flown
off by aircraft carrier ARGUS on the 17th, but German minelaying around
Plymouth delayed her departure from Plymouth until 13 November, arriving at
Gibraltar on the 16th.
light cruiser proceeded to Alexandria arriving on the 22nd.
Destroyers DUNCAN and FORESTER departed Gibraltar to meet arriving light
cruiser MANCHESTER and troopship FRANCONIA.
arrived at Gibraltar on the 21st.
cruiser SHEFFIELD departed Gibraltar to meet light cruiser SOUTHAMTPON
relieving her as escort of steamers CLAN FORBES, CLAN FRASER, NEW ZEALAND
cruiser SOUTHAMPTON arrived at Gibraltar on the 22nd
November, destroyers WISHART, WRESTLER, VELOX departed Gibraltar to join
light cruiser SHEFFIELD. Destroyer VIDETTE sailed on the 23rd to relieve
cruiser SHEFFIELD arrived at Gibraltar on the 24th after leaving the convoy.
Destroyers DUNCAN and HOTSPUR with corvettes PEONY, SALVIA, HYACINTH,
GLOXINIA departed Gibraltar to join the steamers and escort them through the
Straits of Gibraltar by dark.
Submarine UPRIGHT departed Gibraltar for patrol, then proceeding to Malta.
SLS.56 departed Freetown.
Destroyer LEAMINGTON escorted the convoy from 5 to 9 December.
SLS.56 rendezvoused with convoy SL.56. The convoy arrived at Liverpool on 12
BS.9 departed Suez, escorted by sloops CLIVE and GRIMSBY. The sloops were
detached when the convoy was joined by light cruiser LEANDER, anti-aircraft
cruiser CARLISLE, destroyer KINGSTON, sloops AUCKLAND and HINDUSTAN. Light
cruiser HOBART joined on the 26th. The convoy was dispersed off Aden on the
Wednesday, 20 November
Anti-aircraft cruiser CURACOA transferred to convoy EN.29.
Anti-aircraft ship ALYNBANK arrived at Scapa Flow at 0830 after convoy EN.28
Destroyers BRILLIANT, BEAGLE, BULLDOG departed Loch Alsh at 1435 and joined
destroyer ELECTRA which departed Scapa Flow at 1430.
destroyers rendezvoused off the Butt of Lewis and proceeded to 60N, 17W to
meet Battleship RODNEY and escort her to Scapa Flow.
four destroyers met battleship RODNEY on the 22nd. Destroyer BULLDOG lost
touch after the rendezvous during the night and arrived at Scapa Flow at
battleship and the other destroyers arrived at Scapa Flow at 1430/23rd.
Destroyers BRADFORD and BROADWATER departed Plymouth at 1800 to work up at
Destroyer BROADWATER put into Milford Haven at 1200/21st to correct defects.
Destroyer BRADFORD arrived at Scapa Flow at 1600/22nd.
OB.246 departed Liverpool escorted by destroyer WALKER. On 21 November,
sloop CHEVREUIL and corvettes CROCUS and HEARTSEASE joined the escort. The
escort was detached on the 24th.
OB.247 did not sail.
FN.338 departed Southend, escorted by destroyers VALOROUS and VERSATILE. The
convoy arrived at Methil on the 22nd.
FS.340 departed Methil, escorted by destroyer WINCHESTER and sloop EGRET.
The convoy arrived at Southend on22 November.
Walrus from light cruiser MANCHESTER capsized and sank at Sullom Voe. Naval
Airman D. W. Charnock was lost.
British tanker CHESAPEAKE (8955grt) was damaged by German bombing off the
HG.47 departed Gibraltar with thirty ships.
ROCHESTER escorted the convoy from 20 November to 4 December. Destroyer
HOTSPUR escorted the convoy on the 20th only.
Destroyers HIGHLANDER and SAGUENAY joined the convoy on the 30th. Destroyer
SAGUENAY was torpedoed on 1 December and was assisted by destroyer
HIGHLANDER to port.
Destroyers ACHATES and ANTHONY were detached from convoy SL.55 to replace
the destroyers. The convoy arrived at Liverpool on 4 December.
Destroyers FOXHOUND and FORTUNE departed Gibraltar to join aircraft carrier
FURIOUS and escort her to Freetown.
Italian torpedo boat CONFIENZA was sunk in an accidental collision with
Italian armed merchant cruiser CAPITANO A. CECCHI (2321grt) off Brindisi.
Italian coastal steamer ARDITA III (57grt) was sunk by British bombing at
armed merchant cruiser PINGUIN sank British steamer MAIMOA (8011grt) in the
Indian Ocean at32‑14S, 100‑56E.
entire crew were made prisoners of war.
cruiser CANBERRA arrived at Fremantle.
heavy cruiser departed the same day for steamer MAIMOA's position.
November, heavy cruiser CANBERRA rescued some crew from steamer PORT
WELLINGTON sunk the next day and searched for the German ship until 24
Australian cruiser returned to Fremantle on the 27th.
Australian minesweeping trawler GOORANGI (223grt, T/Commissioned Officer
from Warrant Rank D. McGregor, RANVR (S) was lost in a collision off Port
Phillip with British troopship DUNTROON (10, 346grt).
entire crew, McGregor, T/Warrant Officer K. J. Matheson, RANR, Lt Cdr G. W.
Boyle, RANR (minesweeping advisor), twenty one ratings, were lost in the
Thursday, 21 November
German submarine was attacked and claimed sunk by Corvette RHODODENDRON,
which was escorting convoy HX.87/OB.244 with destroyers VANQUISHER,
VISCOUNT, WHITEHALL, CASTLETON and corvette HIBISCUS, in 56‑28N, 14‑13W.
Submarine U.103 was not damaged. However, U.104, which is generally credited
to corvette RHODODENDRON in this attack, survived several more days to sink
two tankers on the 27th.
Submarine U.104 was lost on the 28th northwest of Tory Island to a mine. The
submarine on her first war patrol was lost with all hands of forty nine
the convoy duty, the corvettes arrived at Liverpool on the 26th and the
destroyers arrived at the Clyde on the 28th.
Anti-aircraft cruiser CURACOA transferred to convoy WN.41.
FN.339 departed Southend, escorted by destroyer VIMIERA and sloop WESTON.
The convoy arrived at Methil on the 23rd.
FS.341 departed Methil, escorted by destroyers VERDUN and WOLSEY. The convoy
arrived at Southend on the 23rd.
Cdr (A) G. B. Legge RNVR, P/T/Sub Lt (A) A. J. Franklin RNVR, were killed
when their Proctor of 752 Squadron crashed north of Exeter.
in attacks on convoy OB.244 sank British steamer DAYDAWN (4768grt) in
56‑30N, 14‑10W and Greek steamer VICTORIA (6085grt) in 56‑17N, 14‑12W.
crew were missing from the steamer DAYDAWN. The survivors were picked up by
corvette RHODODENDRON. There were twenty seven survivors from the Greek
steamer. Destroyer CASTLETON rescued the crews of both steamers. Canadian
destroyers SKEENA and ST LAURENT with convoy SC.11 were dispatched to the
Submarine U.103 attacked a third steamer at the same area, but the torpedo
glanced off the steamer's hull and did not explode.
British steamer DAKOTIAN (6426grt) was sunk on a mine in Dale Roads, Milford
entire crew was rescued.
steamer PELEUS (4695grt) was damaged on a mine at Milford Haven.
British drifter XMAS ROSE (96grt, A/T/Skipper J. Merson RNR) was sunk on a
mine in the Thames Estuary, 51-47-45N, 1-25-30E.
died of wounds. Three ratings were lost.
HX.90 departed Halifax at 1300 escorted by Canadian destroyer ASSINIBOINE,
auxiliary patrol vessel FRENCH, corvette WINDFLOWER. The convoy was given
ocean escort by Armed merchant cruiser LACONIA which was detached on 1
BHX.90 departed Bermuda on the 19th escorted by ocean escort armed merchant
cruiser MALOJA. The convoy rendezvoused with convoy HX.90 on the 24th and
the armed merchant cruiser was detached.
Destroyers VANQUISHER and VISCOUNT joined on 1 December and sloop FOLKESTONE
and corvette GENTIAN on 2 December. The convoy arrived at Liverpool on 5
coastal steamer BRIGETTE RAABE (375grt) was badly damaged in a collision
eighteen miles south of Utklippan. She was not salvable and her wreck was
destroyer AETOS claimed sinking an Italian submarine between Skiathos and
Anti-submarine trawler LYDIARD attacked a submarine contact in 31-45N,
32-18E, near Port Said.
trawler was damaged by the explosion of one of her depth charges and was
forced to return to harbour.
Destroyers HAVOCK and HASTY departed Alexandria on the 22nd to search in the
armed merchant cruiser PINGUIN sank British steamer PORT BRISBANE (8739grt)
in the Indian Ocean at 29‑29S, 95‑35E.
crewman was lost from the British steamer. Fifty eight crew, two gunners, a
passenger were made prisoners of war.
Australian heavy cruiser CANBERRA refuelling at Fremantle and light cruiser
PERTH on convoy duty were dispatched to search for the German ship. Light
cruiser PERTH escorted her convoy away from the danger area before joining
contact was made, but heavy cruiser CANBERRA was able to rescue the
survivors from PORT WELLINGTON and take them to Fremantle.
SL.56 departed Freetown escorted by armed merchant cruiser BULOLO to 8
December and sloop BRIDGEWATER to 22 November. The convoy rendezvoused with
December destroyer HIGHLANDER and on 10 December destroyer BURNHAM joined
the convoy. The convoy arrived at Liverpool on 12 December.
Friday, 22 November
Anti-aircraft cruiser CURACOA transferred to convoy EN.30.
Anti-aircraft ship ALYNBANK departed Scapa Flow at 0900 for gunnery practice
then joined convoy WN.42 in Pentland Firth.
FN.340 departed Southend, escorted by destroyers VANITY and WOLFHOUND and
patrol sloop SHEARWATER. The convoy arrived at Methil on the 24th.
FS.342 departed Methil, escorted by sloop LONDONDERRY. The convoy arrived at
Southend on the 24th.
sank British steamer CREE (4791grt) in 54‑39N, 18‑50W.
entire crew of the steamer was lost.
launch ML.127 (T/Lt E. Kneen RNVR) was sunk on a mine in the Thames Estuary.
and ten ratings were lost in the motor launch.
British trawler ETHEL TAYLOR (276grt, T/Skipper R. Cowling RNVR) was lost on
a mine 7.5 cables 090° from the Tyne Pier Light.
ratings were lost on the trawler.
British steamer PIKEPOOL (3683grt) was sunk on a mine twenty three miles
east, southeast of Smalls Light.
Sixteen crew and the naval gunner were lost on the steamer.
British tug HERCULES (82grt), towing 116 Hopper Barge, was sunk on a mine in
crew were missing and one was killed on the tug.
Barge was towed into the Tyne.
Swedish steamer BIFROST (1781grt) was damaged by German bombing at Alfred
SC.13 departed St Johns at 1145 escorted by Canadian armed yacht HUSKY.
0830/23rd, HUSKY left the convoy. No ocean escort was provided.
heavy weather, three steamers foundered in this convoy. Greek KOLCHIS (
2219grt) on the 23rd, British LISIEUX (2594grt) on the 27th, Greek EUGENIA
CAMBANIS (3470grt) on the 28th. Twenty three crew were lost in KOLCHIS; none
in the other two steamers.
December, destroyers SABRE, SCIMITAR, SHIKARI, sloop WELLINGTON, corvettes
CLARKIA and HELIOTROPE joined. The convoy arrived at Liverpool on 7
steamer (former armed merchant cruiser) CHARLES PLUMIER (4504grt) was
captured by destroyers FAULKNOR and FORESTER one hundred and ten miles off
Gibraltar in 35‑32N, 3‑05W.
was a RATION operation and light cruiser DESPATCH was at sea to cover the
Destroyer BOULONNAIS escorting the steamer retired unmolested.
Steamer CHARLES PLUMIER arrived at Gibraltar on the 22nd and was renamed
LARGS for British use.
British tanker ZAHRA (821grt) was damaged by Italian bombing at Alexandria.
Saturday, 23 November
Battlecruiser HOOD and destroyers ESCAPADE, COSSACK, SIKH, ESKIMO departed
Scapa Flow at 1730 to cover minelaying by the 1st Minelaying Squadron
escorted by light cruiser AURORA which also departed Scapa Flow on the 23rd.
Destroyer KEPPEL departed Scapa Flow at 1535 to rendezvous with Rear Admiral
Minelayers five miles 030° from Butt of Lewis at 2045.
the night of 22 November, minelayer PORT NAPIER's port propeller was fouled
by the cable of collier BALMAHA. The minelayer was unable to proceed on the
Minelayers SOUTHERN PRINCE, AGAMEMNON, MENESTHEUS, PORT QUEBEC departed Loch
Alsh on the 23rd, escorted by destroyers BATH and ST ALBANS.
Minefield SN.11 was laid off the southern tip of Iceland in the Denmark
minelayers returned to Loch Alsh on the 26th.
Minelayer PORT NAPIER was lost in a fire in Loch Alsh in 57‑17N, 5‑44W on
Destroyer KEPPEL was detached to arrive for refuelling in Iceland at
Destroyers BATH and ST ALBANS refuelled at Iceland on the 27th.
covering force was joined by destroyer KEPPEL arrived back at Scapa Flow at
Anti-aircraft ship ALYNBANK relieved Anti-aircraft cruiser CURACOA at 1115
in convoy EN.30.
Anti-aircraft cruiser CURACOA proceeded to Scapa Flow arriving at 1845.
OB.248 departed Liverpool escorted by destroyers VERITY and WITHERINGTON,
sloop FOLKESTONE, corvettes ARBUTUS and CAMELLIA. The escort was detached on
FS.343 departed Methil, escorted by destroyers WALLACE and WESTMINSTER. The
convoy arrived at Southend on the 25th.
in attacks on convoy SC.11 sank British steamer JUSTITIA (4562grt) in
55‑00N, 13‑10W, British steamer BRADFYNE (4740grt) and Norwegian steamer
BRUSE (2205grt) in 55‑04N, 12‑15W, Dutch steamer COTMARSUM (3628grt) in
55‑00N, 12‑00W, Norwegian steamer SALONICA (2694grt) in 55‑16N, 12‑14W,
British steamer LEISE MAERSK (3136grt) in 55‑30N, 11‑00W, Dutch steamer
BUSSUM (3636grt) in 55‑39N, 08‑58W.
Thirteen crew were lost on steamer JUSTITIA. Thirty nine crew were lost on
the steamer BRADFYNE. Sixteen crew were lost on the steamer BRUSE. Canadian
destroyer SKEENA rescued the survivors of Norwegian steamer BRUSE. Nine crew
were lost on the steamer SALONICA. Sloo ENCHANTRESS picked up the crew of
the Norwegian steamer. Seventeen crew were missing from the steamer LEISE
MAERSK. Canadian destroyer OTTAWA rescued the crew of steamer BUSSUM.
Steamer BRUSE was picked up by a tug on the 28th and towed to the Clyde
where they arrived on the 30th for salvage.
in attacks on convoy OB.244 sank British steamer OAKCREST (5407grt) in
53‑00N, 17‑00W, Greek steamer KOLCHIS (2219grt) in 56‑44N, 19‑13W, British
steamer KING IDWAL (5115grt) in 56‑44N, 19‑13W, British steamer TYMERIC
(5228grt) in 57‑00N, 20‑30W, Swedish steamer ANTEN (5135grt) in 56‑57N,
five crew were lost on the steamer OAKCREST. There were no survivors from
steamer KOLCHIS. Twelve crew were lost on the steamer KING IDWAL. Seventy
two crew were lost from steamer TYMERIC. Only three survivors from TYMERIC
were rescued. One crewman from steamer ANTEN was lost.
SANDWICH rescued the survivors from steamers KING IDWAL and ANTEN.
British tug BONAPARTE (38grt) was sunk by German bombing at Southampton,
near Northam Bridge.
British drifter NEW COMET (245grt) was sunk on a mine 3000 yards 072° from
Tyne Point War Signal Station.
drifter was beached inside the river entrance. The was refloated but sank
during the night of 27/28 February 1941.
British drifter SAILOR KING (41grt) was sunk on a mine off Brightlingsea.
British troopship LLANDOVERY CASTLE (10, 640grt) was damaged by German
bombing at Southampton.
British steamer DUCHESS OF CORNWALL (302grt) was damaged by German bombing
alongside Royal Pier, Southampton.
Steamer DUCHESS OF CORNWALL had been hired as a paddle minesweeper. She was
not handed over because of this damage.
Destroyers HAVOCK and HASTY, which departed Alexandria on the 22nd for an
anti-submarine sweep, arrived back in time to depart with the Fleet.
Operation MB 9, Force C of Battleships MALAYA and RAMILLIES, aircraft
carrier EAGLE, light cruisers ORION, SYDNEY, AJAX, destroyers HYPERION,
HAVOCK, HASTY, ILEX, GALLANT, DAINTY, DIAMOND departed Alexandria to cover
the movement of convoy MW.4 of steamers BRECONSHIRE, MEMNON, CLAN FERGUSON,
CLAN MACAULAY escorted by Force D.of anti-aircraft cruisers CALCUTTA and
COVENTRY and destroyers VAMPIRE, VENDETTA, VOYAGER, GREYHOUND.
C arrived at Suda Bay for refuelling at 0800/24th.
cruiser BERWICK departed Alexandria later in the day and joined Force C off
Suda Bay on the 24th.
Greek convoy of nine ships, escorted by six destroyers, departed Candia for
Corvettes SALVIA, PEONY, GLOXINIA, HYACINTH arrived at Gibraltar from
Destroyers JAGUAR and KELVIN arrived at Gibraltar from Plymouth and
temporarily joined the 8th Destroyer Flotilla.
Destroyer KELVIN had a number of British and other passengers from
Casablanca whom had been removed from Portuguese steamer MIRA AZUL off Cape
BN.9A departed Aden, escorted by destroyer KIMBERLEY. Sloop PARRAMATTA
joined on the 24th. Both ships were detached on the 25th. Sloop GRIMSBY
joined on the 27th and arrived at Suez with the convoy on the 28th.
Sunday, 24 November
Aircraft carrier FORMIDABLE was completed and arrived in the Clyde for
trials on the 28th. On 18 December, FORMIDABLE and heavy cruiser NORFOLK
were detached from the Home Fleet for duty as Force K in the South Atlantic.
OB.249 departed Liverpool escorted by destroyers WANDERER, WARWICK and
corvettes CAMPANULA, CLEMATIS, FLEUR DE LYS, PERIWINKLE. WANDERER was
detached on the 27th. The remainder of the escort detached on the 28th.
FN.341 departed Southend, escorted by destroyer WATCHMAN and sloop EGRET,
and arrived at Methil on the 26th.
FN.342 departed Southend, escorted by destroyers VERDUN and WOLSEY, and
arrived at Methil on the 26th.
FS.344 departed Methil, escorted by destroyers VALOROUS, VERSATILE and
corvette SNAPDRAGON, and arrived at Southend on the 26th.
destroyers GALSTER, LODY, BEITZEN departed Brest on the 24th to operate off
German destroyers attacked at 0015 a group of fishing trawlers twelve miles
southeast of Wolf Rock sinking Belgian trawler MARGUERITE SIMONNE (70grt)
eight miles southeast by south of Wolf Rock and damaging British trawler
LENT LILY (44grt) six miles east southeast of Wolf Rock.
crew of trawler MARGUERITE SIMONNE landed at Newlyn.
then attacked a small convoy of three steamers, one tug, two barges five
miles off Penzance sinking Dutch steamer APOLLONIA (2086grt) and damaging
Norwegian steamer STADION II (629grt).
Fifteen crew were lost on the steamer APOLLONIA.
Norwegian steamer FERNWOOD (4695grt) escaped damage.
Destroyers JAVELIN, JERSEY, JACKAL, JUPITER, KASHMIR were at sea south of
Prawle Point and proceeded towards the engagement, but were unable to
contact the German ships.
German destroyers returned undamaged at Brest on the 25th.
Anti-aircraft ship ALYNBANK left convoy EN.30 in Pentland Firth and arrived
at Scapa Flow at 0830. She departed at 1030 and escorted convoy WN.43 from
British steamer ALMA DAWSON (3985grt) wassunk on a defensive minefield in
entire crew was rescued.
Anti-submarine trawler AMETHYST (627grt, T/Lt Hon. W. K. Rous RNVR) was sunk
on a mine in the Barrow Deep in the Thames Estuary.
ratings were wounded in the trawler.
Survivors from AMETHYST were picked up by Anti-submarine trawler LE TIGER
yacht GAEL (101grt, T/Lt F. J. B. Hart RNVR) was sunk on a mine at the
entrance to Humber, northeast by north of the Spurn Light House.
British salvage vessel PRESERVER (630grt) was sunk on a mine one cable 54°
from No. 1 Buoy, Milford Haven.
crew were lost on the vessel.
British steamer RYAL (367grt) was sunk on a mine laid by German torpedo
boats on 29/30 October in minefield "Alfred” in 51‑32N, 01‑04E. Only one
survivor of a crew of nine was rescued.
British steamer BEHAR (6100grt) was badly damaged on a mine in 51‑42N,
05‑07W. The entire crew was rescued. BEHAR was run aground 4˝ cables 230°
from Great Castle Head Lower Light to prevent her sinking but was a total
British steamer THOMAS M. (310grt) was sunk on a mine 1˝ miles 135° from
Yarmouth Harbour entrance. Seven crew were lost.
British steamer ALICE MARIE (2206grt) was sunk on a mine eight cables 255°
from Knob Light Vessel, Barrow Deep. The entire crew was rescued.
British steamer CAMROUX IV (590grt) was damaged on a mine one mile 45° from
East Oaze Light Vessel.
cruiser BERWICK, light cruiser NEWCASTLE, destroyers DEFENDER, GREYHOUND,
HERO, HEREWARD departed Alexandria to escort convoy ME.4 back from Malta.
are joined at sea by anti-aircraft cruiser COVENTRY and destroyer GALLANT
which departed Alexandria the day before.
cruiser DANAE arrived at Singapore.
heavy cruiser ADMIRAL SCHEER sank British steamer PORT HOBART (7448grt) near
the Azores at 24‑44N, 58‑21W.
entire crew of the British steamer were made prisoners of war.
Monday, 25 November
Anti-aircraft ship ALYNBANK transferred to convoy EN.31.
Destroyer VIMY departed Scapa Flow at 0900 to rendezvous with Armed merchant
cruisers LETITIA and WOLFE and destroyer ST MARYS ten miles 090° from Butt
of Lewis at 1515/25th to provide escort.
to weather, destroyer VIMY could not make seven knots and could not join.
Destroyer VIMY arrived at Scapa Flow at 1720/27th.
Destroyer VERDUN completed her conversion to fast escort vessel.
Submarine TALISMAN reported torpedoing a German tanker off Lorient in
Submarine TALISMAN left the tanker dead in the water with a trawler standing
in the day, the submarine captured French fishing vessel LE CLIPPER (40grt)
off Lorient. The vessel was used to observe German submarine movements.
launch ML.111 (Lt A. V. C. Hoadley RNR) was sunk on a mine near
Chequer Shoal Buoy off the Humber. Two ratings were missing and Lt Hoadley
CONQUISTADOR (224grt, T/Skipper J. Paterson
(act) RNR) was sunk in a collision in the Thames Estuary.
Minesweeping trawler KENNYMORE (225grt, T/Skipper J. W. Greene RNR) was sunk
on a mine in the Thames Estuary, off the East Oaze Light Vessel.
ratings were lost in the trawler. Greene was wounded.
British hopper barge TCC HOPPER No. 3 (698grt) was sunk on a mine 54‑40N,
entire crew was rescued.
HX.91 departed Halifax at 1600 escorted by Canadian destroyer ASSINIBOINE
and auxiliary patrol vessel FRENCH. Auxiliary patrol vesselsELK and HUSKY
operated within the harbour approaches .
vessel FRENCH departed the convoy at 1711 and destroyer ASSINIBOINE departed
at 1450/26th. The ocean escort was Battleship REVENGE and Canadian destroyer
ST CLAIR. The battleship was detached on 4 December. The destroyer continued
with the convoy and arrived in the Clyde on 11 December.
BHX.91 departed Bermuda on the 23rd escorted by ocean escort armed merchant
cruiser ASCANIA. The convoy rendezvoused with convoy HX.91 on the 28th and
the armed merchant cruiser was detached.
December destroyers VANSITTART and WALKER and corvette CANDYTUFT joined the
convoy. Corvette HONEYSUCKLE joined on the 8th. The destroyers were detached
on10 December. The convoy arrived at Liverpool on 11 December.
H.departed Gibraltar on COLLAR. Departing were battlecruiser RENOWN,
aircraft carrier ARK ROYAL, light cruisers SHEFFIELD, DESPATCH, MANCHESTER,
SOUTHAMPTON (the last two carrying 700 RAF personnel each for Alexandria
embarked from troopship FRANCONIA), destroyers HOTSPUR (proceeding to Malta
for repairs), FIREDRAKE, FAULKNOR, FORESTER, FURY, WISHART, DUNCAN,
ENCOUNTER, JAGUAR, KELVIN, VIDETTE.
Battleship ROYAL SOVEREIGN, which was repairing at Gibraltar, was considered
for this operation, but not used as she was not ready in time.
F light cruisers SOUTHAMPTON and MANCHESTER and destroyer HOTSPUR were en
route to Alexandria. Force F was escorted by destroyers DUNCAN and VIDETTE.
sailing were British steamers CLAN FORBES (7529grt), CLAN FRASER (7529grt),
NEW ZEALAND STAR (10, 740grt) and new corvettes SALVIA, HYACINTH, PEONY,
Corvette GLOXINIA arrived at Malta with engine room defects.
other three corvettes proceeded to Alexandria and steamer NEW ZEALAND STAR
went directly to Suda Bay.
Mediterranean Fleet departed Alexandria at 0325 for COLLAR as Force A with
battleships WARSPITE and VALIANT, aircraft carrier ILLUSTRIOUS,
destroyersDECOY (for repairs at Malta), JERVIS, JANUS, JUNO, NUBIAN, MOHAWK,
GRIFFIN, WATERHEN, WRYNECK.
noon, troopship ULSTER PRINCE, with the last of BARBARITY details, joined
cruiser YORK and light cruisers GLASGOW and GLOUCESTER of the 3rd Cruiser
Squadron departed Alexandria later in the day and joined the Fleet at sea at
Destroyers HERO and HEREWARD, which departed Malta at 0500 that day, joined
the WARSPITE force on the 26th.
the Mediterranean Fleet destroyers, less IMPERIAL and STUART under repairs,
were involved in COLLAR.
British netlayer PROTECTOR and armed boarding vessels FIONA and CHAKLA
departed Alexandria for Suda Bay.
Greek convoy of seven steamers, escorted by four destroyers, departed Suda
Bay for Piraeus.
British steamer PATRIA (11, 885grt) was blown up at Haifa by Zionist
terrorists to prevent the ship's use as a deportation vessel for Palestinian
armed merchant cruisers ORION and KOMET sank New Zealand steamer HOLMWOOD
(546grt) in the South Pacific twenty seven miles west by south of Durham
Point, Chatham Island in 43‑44S, 177‑30W.
Seventeen crew and thirteen passengers were landed at Emirau Island on 21
Tuesday, 26 November
Aircraft carrier FORMIDABLE departed Greenock and arrived at Glasgow on the
27th, escorted by destroyer VESPER.
Anti-aircraft ship ALYNBANK arrived at Scapa Flow at 1040 after escorting
convoy EN.31 in Pentland Firth.
Anti-aircraft cruiser CURACOA departed Scapa Flow at 1000 to join convoy
OB.250 departed Liverpool escorted by destroyers ACHATES, ACTIVE, ANTHONY
and corvette PICOTEE. The escort was detached on the 29th.
FN.343 departed Southend, escorted by destroyers WALLACE and WESTMINSTER.
The convoy arrived at Methil on the 28th.
FN.344 departed Southend, escorted by destroyer VIVIEN and sloop
LONDONDERRY. The convoy arrived at Methil on the 28th.
FS.345 departed Methil, escorted by destroyer VANITY and escort
ship/destroyer GLEANER. The convoy arrived at Southend on the 28th.
FS.346 departed Methil, escorted by destroyer WOOLSTON and sloop LOWESTOFT.
The convoy arrived at Southend on the 28th.
Destroyer COTSWOLD departed Scapa Flow at 1315 and met British steamer BEN
MY CHREE with troops off Aberdeen.
destroyer escorted the steamer to Lerwick arriving at 1200/27th.
French armed patrol coaster MEDOC (1166grt, under the command of Polish Cdr
Stankiewicz) was sunk by a German aircraft torpedo off Rame Head in the
Polish Commander was lost with the vessel. Lt T. O'Shanohun RNR, T/Lt H. J.
Murray RNVR, Polish Midshipman Krasicki, thirty six British ratings, a
Polish petty officer were lost on MEDOC.
steamer WALENBURG (496grt) was damaged on a mine in 50‑40N, 01‑08W.
destroyers of the 72nd Destroyer Division and six newly recommissioned,
unassigned destroyers were transferred to the Royal Navy under Lend Lease.
Lt Cdr A
Lt Cdr G B
Lt Cdr R
Lt Cdr A F
Lt Cdr E J Lee
Cdr E G A
Cdr P G
Lt Cdr J A
SALISBURY, NEWMARKET, NEWARK, RICHMOND, NEWPORT were not commissioned until
was damaged on 9 December 1940 in a collision with destroyer NEWMARKET.
After repairs at St Johns from 19 December to 29 January, she departed for
England but had to turn back when two depth charges were washed overboard in
heavy weather and exploded close aboard.
RAMSEY, ROCKINGHAM, WELLS had faulty stop valves which required extensive
arrived at Devonport on 17 December and was under repair until 29 January.
Destroyer ROCKINGHAM arrived at Plymouth 22 December and was under repair
until 22 February.
READING and RIPLEY departed Halifax with convoy HX.93 on 3 December and
arrived at Plymouth on 17 December.
NEWPORT, SALISBURY, RICHMOND departed Halifax on 15 December after convoy
HX.96 and the first two arrived at Belfast on 30 December and RICHMOND
arrived at Plymouth on 31 December.
NEWMARKET departed Halifax on 15 January 1941 with convoy HX.104 and arrived
at Belfast on 26 January and Plymouth on 30 January.
and WELLS finally departed Halifax on 4 February 1941, but WELLS had to be
towed back by NEWARK after twelve hours steaming because of a faulty
lubrication system. NEWARK was damaged by weather.
and WELLS departed again on 26 February and arrived at Belfast on 5 March
and Plymouth on 9 March.
Aircraft carrier ILLUSTRIOUS, light cruisers GLOUCESTER and GLASGOW,
destroyers JANUS, JUNO, MOHAWK, NUBIAN raided the Italian seaplane base at
Port Laki, Leros at 0600 before joining ME.4 cover.
Swordfish of the 819 Squadron was lost with Lt R. W. V. Hamilton, A/Sub Lt
(A) J. R. B. Weekes, Naval Airman J. C. H. Garnham.
cruiser YORK was detached to Suda Bay at 0500 to refuel and join the 3rd
Cruiser Squadron off Cape Matapan at 1530.
remainder of Force A and troopship ULSTER PRINCE arrived at Suda Bay for
refuelling of the destroyers between 0700 and 0830. Force A departed Suda
Bay at 1030.
Swordfish from aircraft carrier EAGLE raided Tripoli at 0520 in Operation
TRIPE. No aircraft were lost.
Drifters FELLOWSHIP and LANNER departed Malta for Suda Bay at 0800.
MW.4 of steamers BRECONSHIRE, MEMNON, CLAN FERGUSON, CLAN MACAULEY with
battleships RAMILLIES and MALAYA arrived at Malta at 0813.
Battleship RAMILLIES, light cruiser NEWCASTLE, anti-aircraft cruiser
COVENTRY, destroyers GREYHOUND, GRIFFIN, DIAMOND, DEFENDER, HEREWARD
departed Malta at noon to join Force B, the ARK ROYAL group of Force H. The
ships joined heavy cruiser BERWICK at sea.
Battleship MALAYA departed at noon after repairing a flooded water tight
compartment which had limited her speed.
of steamers WAIWERA, DEVIS, VOLO, RODI, CORNWALL departed Malta at 1613,
escorted by anti-aircraft cruiser CALCUTTA and destroyers VAMPIRE, VENDETTA,
VOYAGER. Destroyer DAINTY was delayed with engine defects and joined later.
the night of 26/27 November, battleship RAMILLIES and cruisers BERWICK and
NEWCASTLE were attacked by Italian torpedo bombers.
Zealand light cruiser LEANDER was relieved in the Red Sea Force by
Australian light cruiser HOBART.
armed merchant cruisers KOMET and ORION sank New Zealand troopship
RANGITANE (16,712grt) in the Pacific in 36‑48S, 175‑07W. Seven crew and
six passengers were lost and the rest made prisoners of war.
Zealand light cruiser ACHILLES and armed merchant cruiser MONAWAI were
dispatched to intercept. ACHILLES departed Lyttleton on the 27th, but no
contact was made with the German ship. She returned to patrol off Auckland
on the 30th and arrived at Auckland on 1 December.
Wednesday, 27 November
Destroyer WALLACE was damaged in a collision with the Newarp Light Float.
She was repaired in 48 hours in dock at Rosyth.
Anti-aircraft cruiser CURACOA transferred to convoy EN.32.
cruiser left convoy EN.32 to return to Rosyth for a conference at 1000/28th.
Anti-aircraft cruiser CURACOA arrived at Rosyth at 0600/29th.
FN.345 departed Southend, escorted by destroyers VALOROUS and VERSATILE. The
convoy arrived at Methil on the 30th.
FS.347 departed Methil, escorted by destroyers VERDUN and WOLSEY. The convoy
arrived at Southend on the 29th.
Destroyer PUNJABI departed Rosyth at 0830 after boiler cleaning to return to
Scapa Flow where she arrived at 1700.
Destroyers EXMOOR and PYTCHLEY departed Scapa Flow at 1445 to patrol east of
Fair Isle during the night to investigate reports of ships passing through
Fair Island Channel.
damage German submarine was expected to pass through the Channel.
patrol area was left at 1000/28th. The destroyers met destroyer SOUTHDOWN to
exercise. They then returned to Scapa Flow arriving at 1630/28th.
Submarine H.33, entering Tobermory, was in a collision with corvette
HEATHER. H.33 was repaired at Oban in December.
British steamer GALACUM (585grt) was damaged on a mine in 51‑34N, 01‑09E.
British trawlers CHARMOUTH (195grt) and RATTRAY (182grt) were damaged by
German bombing off Milford Haven.
Minesweeping trawler ELK (181grt, Chief Skipper J. S. Bush RNR) was sunk on
a mine 114 cables 185° from Penlee Point at Plymouth. There were no
casualties on the trawler.
sank British steamer DIPLOMAT (8240grt), a straggler from convoy HX.88, in
Fourteen crew from the British steamer were lost.
damaged British tanker CHARLES F. MEYER (10, 516grt) from convoy HX.87 in
sank British steamer IRENE MARIA (1860grt) northwest of Ireland.
sank British steamer GLENMOOR (4393grt) in 54‑35N, 14‑31W.
one crew was lost on the steamer. Two survivors were rescued.
trawler PETER (405grt) was lost in stranding on the Swedish coast.
Battleship RAMILLIES, heavy cruiser BERWICK, light cruiser NEWCASTLE joined
Force H.at 1130.
cruiser DESPATCH and destroyers DUNCAN and WISHART turned over the Gibraltar
to Malta convoy to anti-aircraft cruiser COVENTRY and destroyers GALLANT,
GREYHOUND, HEREWARD, DEFENDER, GRIFFIN which escorted the ships to their
Italian battleships VENETO and CESARE with destroyers GRANATIERE, FUCLIERE,
BERSAGLIERE, ALPINO of the 13th Destroyer Division and FRECCIA, SAETTA,
DARDO of the 7th Destroyer Division departed Naples.
cruisers POLA, FIUME, GORIZIA and destroyers ALFIERI, CARDUCCI, GIOBERTI,
ORIANI of the 9th Destroyer Division departed Naples.
cruisers TRENTO, TRIESTE, BOLZANO with destroyers LANCIERI, ASCARI,
CARABINIERI of the 12th Destroyer Division departed Messina.
at sea was the 10th Torpedo Boat Division of ALCIONE, VEGA, SAGITARRIO,
SIRIO and two MAS divisions were in the Sicilian Strait.
Italian forces engaged British cruisers BERWICK, NEWCASTLE, MANCHESTER,
SOUTHAMPTON west of Malta off Cape Spartivento.
action, Italian heavy cruiser FIUME suffered an engine breakdown during the
Italian destroyer LANCIERI was badly damaged by British gunfire and was left
dead in the water. She was towed from the scene by one of the heavy cruisers
of the 3rd Division.
cruiser BERWICK was damaged by two eight inch shell hits, one of which put
her after turret out of action.
T/Surgeon Lt W. W. Wildman RNVR, six ratings were killed on the cruiser.
Nine ratings were wounded.
November, a Fulmar of 808 Squadron crashed astern of aircraft carrier ARK
ROYAL. Lt (E) J. P. Coates was killed.
November, a Fulmar, piloted by A/Sub Lt (A) R. M. S. Martin RNVR, from 808
Squadron from aircraft carrier ARK ROYAL was shot down. Martin and Leading
Airman A. L. M. Noble were lost.
Gunboat LADYBIRD bombarded Mersa Matruh.
Italian submarine TEMBIEN unsuccessfully attacked heavy cruiser YORK and
light cruiser GLOUCESTER in 36‑00N, 14‑47E.
BN.10 departed Bombay, escorted by armed merchant cruiser HECTOR. The armed
merchant cruiser was detached on 1 December when relieved by light cruiser
HOBART. Anti-aircraft cruiser CARLISLE, destroyer KIMBERLEY, sloops AUCKLAND
and INDUS joined on 3 December. The anti-aircraft cruiser and destroyer
KIMBERLEY were detached on 5 December. Sloop INDUS was detached on 6
December and light cruiser HOBART and sloop AUCKLAND on 7 December. On 7
December, sloops CLIVE and GRIMSBY joined the convoy and arrived with it at
Suez on 10 December.
Zealand light cruiser ACHILLES and two liners had departed Wellington on the
7th and arrived at Sydney on the 12th in preparation for convoy US 7.
Australian troop convoy US 7 departed Fremantle with Polish liner BATORY
(14287grt) and British liners ORION (23371grt), STRATHMORE (23428grt),
STRATHEDEN (23722grt), escorted by light cruiser PERTH. Heavy cruiser
CANBERRA joined the convoy on the 28th and escorted it until 3 December when
she returned to Fremantle.
cruiser CAPETOWN escorted the convoy from 3 to 5 December. The convoy
arrived at Colombo on 7 December.
December, light cruiser CALEDON joined the escort and remained until 12
December, anti-aircraft cruiser CARLISLE and destroyers KINGSTON and
KANDAHAR joined the convoy escort.
cruiser PERTH arrived at Aden on 12 December and left the convoy escort. On
her arrival in the Mediterranean, PERTH relieved light cruiser SYDNEY in the
Mediterranean Fleet. The convoy arrived at Suez on 15 December.
Thursday, 28 November
Battleship NELSON and destroyers SOMALI, MASHONA, MAORI, DOUGLAS departed
Scapa Flow at 2310 for Rosyth where they arrived at 1415/29th.
cruiser NORFOLK arrived at Scapa Flow.
Anti-aircraft cruiser CURACOA departed Rosyth in the afternoon to rendezvous
with convoy EN.33.
OB.251 departed Liverpool escorted by destroyers VANQUISHER, VISCOUNT and
corvette GENTIAN. The escort was detached on 1 December.
Destroyer COTSWOLD with British steamer BEN MY CHREE departed Lerwick at
2300 and proceeded to Aberdeen where they arrived at 1030/29th. The
destroyer returned to Scapa Flow.
Destroyer VIMY departed Scapa Flow at 1400 for the Clyde to escort Norwegian
steamer OSLOFJORD (18,673grt). Destroyer VIMY arrived at 1300/29th. Both
ships departed the Clyde at 1700/29th for the Tyne.
steamer U.95 damaged Norwegian steamer RINGHORN (1298grt) in 55‑29N, 18‑01W.
sank British steamer ST ELWYN (4940grt) in 55‑30N, 19‑30W and Greek
(3578grt) in 55‑30N, 15‑25W. Twenty nine crew were lost from the British
steamer and 19 from the Greek.
British steamer SKIPJACK (1167grt) was damaged at Dover by German shore gun
MANX PRINCE (221grt, T/Skipper A A Grounds RNR)
was sunk on a mine at the entrance to the Humber, 3.5 miles 130˚ from Spurn
Light House. There were no casualties and the crew was rescued by
minesweeping trawler CORTINA (213grt).
ship/destroyer WRYNECK from detached from the WARSPITE group to refuel at
Malta at 0700 and rejoined later that day.
Steamers CLAN FRASER and CLAN FORBES arrived at Malta, escorted by
destroyers DECOY and HOTSPUR at 1430.
destroyers remained at Malta for repairs.
Destroyer GREYHOUND joined the WARSPITE group.
Steamer NEW ZEALAND STAR, escorted by destroyers DEFENDER and HEREWARD and
covered by light cruisers MANCHESTER and SOUTHAMPTON, proceeded to the east.
1700, destroyer GRIFFIN was sent into Malta with engine defects.
cruiser YORK and light cruisers GLASGOW and GLOUCESTER swept to the
northward of Hurd Bank to cover the passage of the corvettes.
MALAYA group was covering the passage of convoy ME.4. Destroyers DIAMOND and
WATERHEN were detached to escort convoy AS.7 of four ships to Port Said,
where they arrived o 2 December.
Italian submarine DESSIE made an unsuccessful attack on Light cruiser
GLASGOW in 36‑30N, 12‑59E.
Italian destroyers PIGAFETTA, DA RECCO, PESSAGNO, RIBOTY and torpedo boats
BASSINI and PRESTINARI shelled Greek positions near Corfu.
Zealand light cruiser LEANDER completed escorting convoy BS.9 on the 26th
and was relieved on the Red Sea convoy escort route by Australian light
cruiser LEANDER departed Aden on the 28th. On 29 November at 1038, she
conducted Operation CANNED, the bombardment of a factory and wireless
station at Banda Alulu, Italian Somaliland. Ninety eight rounds of six inch
ammunition was fired.
Following the bombardment, she arrived at Bombay on 2 December. Light
cruiser LEANDER remained there until 27 December.
SL.57 departed Freetown escorted by armed merchant cruiser CANTON to 15
December, sloop BRIDGEWATER to 30 November, anti-submarine trawler BENGALI
to 30 November.
December, destroyers VANQUISHER, VISCOUNT, WHITEHALL, WINCHELSEA, corvettes
GENTIAN and HIBISCUS joined. On 16 December, catapult ship PEGASGUS joined.
The destroyers and the catapult ship were with the convoy for one day only.
Corvette GENTIAN was detached on 17 December and corvette HIBISCUS on
arrival. The convoy arrived at Liverpool on 19 December.
SLS.57 departed Freetown escorted by anti-submarine trawler SPANIARD to 30
December, destroyers AMAZON and AMBUSCADE, corvettes CROCUS and HEARTSEASE,
anti-submarine trawler LADY LILLIAN joined the convoy. The convoy arrived at
Liverpool n 22 December.
cruiser DURBAN departed Penang.
Friday, 29 November
destroyers GALSTER, BEITZEN, LODY departed Brest and destroyers JUPITER,
KASHMIR, JAVELIN, JERSEY, JACKAL departed Plymouth on the 28th.
operations eight miles off Start Point late on 28 October, the German
destroyers sank British tug AID (134grt) and barge B. H. C. 10 (290grt) and
damaged French tug ABEILLE 14 (126grt).
crew were lost and five rescued from the tug AID. Three crew were lost and
five rescued from the barge B. H. C. 10.
Destroyer JAVELIN sighted the gun flashes of the German destroyers attacking
the small tugs.
engagement twenty miles south of the Lizard, destroyer JAVELIN was hit by
two torpedoes from destroyer LODY and lost her bow and stern.
J. I. A. Mitchell, Midshipman L. E. R. Jack, P/T/Surgeon Lt H. F. Sloan RNVR,
forty three ratings were killed in destroyer JAVELIN. Lt E. T. L.
Dunsterville was wounded.
Attended by destroyer JACKAL, later the other three destroyers as well,
destroyer JAVELIN was towed to Devonport by tug CAROLINE MOLLER (444grt)
arriving from Falmouth.
Destroyers KASHMIR, JERSEY, JUPITER were in a brief encounter with the
German destroyers which were able to escape.
destroyer LODY was struck several times and all three German destroyers had
splinter damage, but none suffered appreciable damage and no casualties were
Destroyer JAVELIN was under repair at Devonport for thirteen months
completing on 28 December 1941.
Destroyer ICARUS arrived at Portsmouth on the 26th from Immingham.
destroyer departed Portsmouth on the 28th and laid minefield J H.in the
Havre to Cherbourg sea lane early on the 29th.
Destroyer ICARUS was escorted by destroyers VANOC, WITCH, VOLUNTEER.
Destroyer EXMOOR carried out an oiling sea trial from British tanker
stirrup method was used while the ships were at anchor.
FS.346 departed Southend, escorted by destroyer VANITY, patrol sloop
WIDGEON, escort ship/destroyer GLEANER. The convoy arrived at Methil on 1
British drifter YOUNG FISHERMAN (95grt) was lost when she ran around at Oban.
British steamer FERMAIN (759grt) at Dover was damaged by German shore guns.
Minesweeping trawler CALVERTON (214grt, T/Skipper J. Fountain RNR) was sunk
by a mine at the entrance to the Humber, 3.7 miles 117° from Spurn Light
ratings were lost on the trawler.
British drifter YOUNG FISHERMAN (95grt) was lost when she ran aground at
Battlecruiser RENOWN, heavy cruiser BERWICK, light cruiser SHEFFIELD,
destroyers FAULKNOR, FURY, FORESTER, FIREDRAKE arrived at Gibraltar at 1430.
Aircraft carrier ARK ROYAL, battleship RAMILLIES, light cruisers NEWCASTLE
and DESPATCH and destroyers DUNCAN, ENCOUNTER, WISHART, KELVIN, JAGUAR
arrived at Gibraltar at 1530.
cruiser BERWICK was transferred to the North Atlantic Command.
submarine PAPANICOLIS attacked Italian steamer CHISONE (6168grt) off Durazzo
Italian submarine DELFINO attacked two Greek destroyers twelve miles east of
Kalojeri and near missed Greek destroyer SPETSAI.
MALAYA/EAGLE force and convoy ME.4 arrived at Alexandria. Steamers VOLO,
RODI, CORNWALL, escorted by two destroyers proceeded to Port Said.
HX.92 departed Halifax at 1400 escorted by Canadian destroyer RESTIGOUCHE
and corvette WINDFLOWER.
local escort parted company at 1652 on the 30th. Ocean escort was armed
merchant cruiser MONTCLARE, which was detached on 8 December.
a lack of suitable escorts, BHX.92 was cancelled. Ships en route to Bermuda
to join were diverted to Halifax to join an HX.serial direct.
Destroyer WOLVERINE joined on 8 December, destroyer VETERAN on 10 December,
destroyer CHELSEA and corvette CAMILLIA on 11 December. The convoy arrived
at Liverpool on 12 December.
Aircraft carrier HERMES, heavy cruisers DEVONSHIRE and CUMBERLAND, light
cruiser EDINBURGH arrived at Freetown.
steamers RHEIN (6031grt) and IDARWALD (5181grt) departed Tampico and were
immediately screened by US destroyers SIMPSON (DD.221) and BROOME (DD.210).
The German ships return to Tampico until 3 December when they once again
attempt to escape the Caribbean.
addition, US light cruiser MEMPHIS (CL.13) and a destroyer escort departed
Key West to patrol the passages into the Atlantic.
Saturday, 30 November
Anti-aircraft cruiser CURACOA transferred from convoy EN.33 to convoy WN.46
in Moray Firth. She continued with the convoy until dark and arrived at
Scapa Flow at 2359 on the 30th.
OB.252 departed Liverpool escorted by destroyers VANSITTART and VETERAN. The
convoy was joined on 1 December by destroyers SABRE, SCIMITAR, SHIKARI,
corvettes CLARKIA and HELIOTROPE and anti-submarine trawlers ST ELSTAN and
WELLARD. Destroyer WALKER joined on 2 December. Destroyer VANSITTART was
detached on 2 December.
December, destroyers HARVESTER and HAVELOCK and sloop WELLINGTON joined the
convoy. Later on 4 December, the escorts, less destroyer WALKER, were
detached from the convoy. Destroyer WALKER left the convoy on 6 December.
FN.347 departed Southend, escorted by destroyer WOOLSTON and sloop
LOWESTOFT. The convoy arrived at Methil on 2 December.
FS.348 departed Methil, escorted by destroyer VIMIERA, sloop WESTON,
minesweeper GOSSAMER. The convoy arrived at Southend on 2 December.
FS.349 departed Methil, escorted by destroyer VIVIEN and sloop LONDONDERRY.
The convoy arrived at Southend on 2 December.
FS.350 was cancelled.
torpedo boats MTB.32 (SO), MTB.31, MTB.30 departed Harwich to investigate
German shipping off Flushing. En route, MTB.32 broke down and returned to
Harwich. MTB.31 and MTB.30 encountered an anchored German convoy off the
Schelde. MTB.30 was damaged by German gunfire and forced to withdraw while
MTB.31 damaged German steamer SANTOS (5943grt) by dropping a depth charge
Anti-aircraft ship ALYNBANK departed Scapa Flow at 0600 to join convoy WN.45
from the Pentland Firth.
British naval trawler CHESTNUT (505grt, Lt J. E. Finch, NZRNVR) was sunk on
a mine off North Foreland.
were no casualties on the trawler.
steamer GORECHT (187grt) was damaged by German bombing at Southampton.
heavy cruiser ADMIRAL HIPPER departed the Elbe to raid in the North
sank British steamer ARACATACA (5378grt) in 57‑08N, 20‑50W.
crew were lost on the British steamer. The survivors were rescued by British
steamer POTARO (5410) and French steamer DJURDJURA (4070grt).
SC.14 at 1340 with Canadian armed yacht HUSKY as local escort. HUSKY left
the convoy at 1900.
Canadian destroyers ST CROIX and NIAGARA departed St Johns also on the 30th.
Destroyer ST CROIX ran into a hurricane and sustained considerable damage.
She arrived back at St Johns on 18 December for repairs.
convoy arrived at Liverpool on 17 December.
WARSPITE/ILLUSTRIOUS group arrived at Alexandria at 1800.
cruisers MANCHESTER and SOUTHAMPTON arrived at Alexandria and disembarked
their personnel and stores.
cruiser SOUTHAMPTON departed Alexandria on 2 December and proceeded into the
Red Sea to escort convoy WS.4B before further Mediterranean Fleet duties.
cruiser YORK and light cruisers GLOUCESTER and GLASGOW arrived at Suda Bay
with the corvettes.
Drifters FELLOWSHIP and LANNER also arrived at Suda Bay.
Monitor TERROR departed Suda Bay for Alexandria.
Troopship ULSTER PRINCE, escorted by destroyers DIAMOND, WATERHEN, VENDETTA
arrived at Port Said. Destroyers WATERHEN and VENDETTA then sailed with
depot ship WOOLWICH for Alexandria.
Destroyer ENCOUNTER departed Gibraltar to meet ocean boarding vessel
MARSDALE and escort her to Gibraltar.
Submarine TRIUMPH departed Gibraltar to carry out an anti-submarine patrol
south of Alboran Island.
cruiser EDINBURGH departed Freetown.
BN.9B departed Aden, escorted by light cruiser CALEDON, destroyer KINGSTON,
sloop FLAMINGO. The escorts were detached on 2 December and the convoy
arrived at Suez on 4 December.
BS.9A departed Suez. The convoy was escorted by light cruiser CALEDON,
destroyer KINGSTON, sloops FLAMINGO and YARRA. The convoy was dispersed on 5
armed merchant cruiser PINGUIN captured British steamer PORT WELLINGTON
(8301grt) in the Indian Ocean in 30‑50S, 73‑20E and scuttled her the next
morning in 31‑10S, 70‑37E.
crew were lost on the steamer. The rest of the crew were made prisoners of
Vichy French Fleet on the 5 November 1940.
Seas Fleet (Amiral Laborde)
Battleship STRASBOURG (Flagship Laborde)
Cruiser Squadron (Vice Amiral Lacroix)
Cruiser Division (Vice Amiral Lacroix) - heavy cruisers ALGERIE, DUPLEIX,
Cruiser Division (Vice Amiral Marquis) - light cruisers MARSEILLAISE and LA
Light Squadron (C. A. Jardel) VOLTA, CHEVALIER PAUL, VAUQUELIN, TARTU of the
5th Large Destroyer Division. VAUTOUR and ALBATROS of 7th Large Destroyer
Division, INDOMPTABLE and CASSARD of the 8th Large Division, destroyers
BORDELAIS, MARS, PALME of the 1st Destroyer Division.
Forces of 3rd Region (Amiral Marquis, Commandant of Toulon N. D.)
of Metropolitan Division of Police (on 19 March 1941, these ships came under
the command C. A. Urvoy de Portzampac when this group became an individual
Destroyer Squadron. 10th Destroyer Division - EPEE (renamed ADROIT on 1
April 1941), LE HARDI, MAMELUCK and 13th Destroyer Division - BALISTE, LA
BAYONNAISE, LA POURSIVANTE.
Sloop Squadron - COMMANDANT BORY, ELAN, LA BATAILLEUSE, LA CURIEUSE,
Submarines disarmed in September - ARCHIMEDE, AURORE, LA VESTALE, LA
SULTANE, ARETHUSE, ARGONAUTE, LA PSYCHE, OREADE.
Destroyer under repair at Toulon;LE TERRIBLE
Maritime Region (V. A. E. Moreau)
Battleship DUNKERQUE at Mers el Kebir(On 20 February 1942, the battleship
arrived at Toulon and was placed in caretaker status)
Amiral Tunisia (V. A. Derrien)
Destroyer Division TRAMONTANE, TORNADE, TYPHON
Amiral Algiers (C. A. Fenard)
Patrol Squadron - ENGAGEANTE, TAPAGEUSE, ESTAFETTE
ContreAmiral Oran (C. A. Jarry)
Patrol Squadron - L'AJACCIENNE, LA TOULONNAISE, LE SETOISE.
Amiral Levant (C. A. De Capentier)
Large Destroyer Divsion - Destroyers GUEPARD and VALMY
- LA GRANDIERE and ANNAMITE
Submarine Division - PHOQUE, DAUPHIN, ESPADON
disarmed at Toulon
of large warships - Battleship PROVENCE (arriving 8 November), heavy cruiser
COLBERT, light cruiser JEAN DE VIENNE, seaplane tender COMMANDANT TESTE
of large destroyers
subgroup - MOGADOR, TIGRE, PANTHERE, LYNX
subgroup - KERSAINT and GERFAUT
subgroup - AIGLE, VAUBAN, LION, VERDUN
Destroyer MOGADOR arrived 5 November from mers el Kebir and was taken to La
Seyne for repairs which were never completed.
Destroyers of the 1st and 3rd subgroup were disarmed in September and
destroyers of the 2nd subgroup were disarmed in October.
subgroup - LANSQUENET, CASQUE, FLEURET (renamed FOUDROYANT on 1 April 1941)
subgroup - LE CORSAIRE (renamed SIROCCO on 1 April 1941), LE FLIBUSTIER
(renamed BISON on 1 April 1941), TROMBE
subgroup - LE HEROS, LE GLORIEUX, LE TONNANT, LE CONQUERANT
subgroup - LE CENTAURE, ARGO, ACHERON, REDOUBTABLE
subgroup - PASCAL, HENRI POINCARE, FRESNEL, ACTEON
subgroup - IRIS, VENUS, PALLAS, CERES
subgroup - GALATEE, SIRENE, NAIADE, ATALANTE, PERLE, LE DIAMANTE
of sloops and auxiliaries - GLADIATEUR, YSER, DEBAIGNEUSE, RANCE, DURANCE,
disarmed at Bizerte
of surface ships - LA POMONE, BOMBARDE, IPHIGENIE, CASTOR, YPRES, LASSIGNY
of submarines - MARSOUIN, REQUIN, CIRCE, CALYPSO
disarmed at Oran
of surface ships - LA DROME, FORFAIT
of submarines - DIANE, ARIANE, EURYDICE, DANAE
Battleship JEAN BART
cruisers PRIMAUGEUT and GLOIRE
destroyers MILAN of the 5th Large Destroyer Division and ALBATROS of the 7th
Large Destroyer Division
Destroyers FRONDEUR, BRESTOIS, L'ALCYON, FOUGUEUX, BOULONNAIS, SIMOUN,
Submarines SIDI FERRUCH, AMPHITRITE, MEDUSE, AMAZONE, SIBYLLE, ORPHEE,
cruisers GEORGES LEYGUES and MONTCALM
destroyers MALIN of the 8th Large Destroyer Division and AUDACIEUX (wrecked
by gunfire - did not departed Dakar until 7 August 1941 to return to the
Mediterranean) and FANTASQUE of the 10th Large Destroyer Division.
Submarines BEVEZIERS and LE MONGE
cruiser LAMOTTE PICQUETT
Training cruiser JEANNE D' ARC
Aircraft carrier BEARN
cruiser EMILE BERTIN
end of November, the following destroyers were under repair -
ACHERON at Portsmouth
repairing, AMAZON at Liverpool repairing, AMBUSCADE at Greenock repairing,
ANTELOPE at Greenock repairing, ARROW at Clyde refitting, ASHANTI at
Sunderland repairing, ATHERSTONE at Chatham repairing, BOREAS at London
repairing, BRIGHTON at Plymouth repairing, BROADWATER at Cardiff repairing,
BURWELL at Plymouth repairing, CAMERON at Portsmouth repairing, CAMPBELTOWN
at Liverpool repairing, CHELSEA at Liverpool repairing, ECHO at Clyde
repairing, EXPRESS at Humber repairing, FAME at Rosyth aground, FEARLESS at
Troon repairing, FORESIGHT at Liverpool refitting, GEORGETOWN at Plymouth
repairing, HAMBLEDON at Chatham repairing, HAMILTON at St Johns repairing,
HOLDERNESS at Sheerness repairing, HOTSPUR at Malta repairing, IMPERIAL at
Malta repairing, INGLEFIELD at London repairing, INTREPID at Hartlepool
repairing, IMPULSIVE at Humber repairing, JAVELIN at Plymouth repairing,
KANDAHAR at Bombay repairing, KELLY at Tyne repairing, MACKAY at Plymouth
reboilering, MENDIP at Tyne repairing, MONTROSE at Chatham repairing,
ROXBOROUGH at St Johns repairing, SHIKARI at Cardiff repairing, SKATE at
Belfast repairing, TARTAR at Plymouth refitting, VEGA at Hull repairing,
VIVACIOUS at Humber repairing, WALPOLE at London repairing, WHITSHED at
Chatham repairing, WINCHELSEA at Liverpool refitting, WINCHESTER at London
repairing, WINDSOR at Humber repairing, WIVERN at Liverpool repairing,
WOLVERINE at Falmouth refitting, ZULU at Rosyth repairing, Australian STUART
at Malta repairing, Canadian SKEENA at Clyde repairing, French BRANLEBAS at
Portsmouth repairing, LA CORDELIERE at Portsmouth repairing, LA FLORE at
Portsmouth repairing, L'INCOMPRISE at Portsmouth repairing, LEOPARD at
Plymouth repairing, Polish BLYSKAWICA at Clyde repairing, BURZA at Clyde