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  British and Other Navies in World War 2 Day-by-Day
by Don Kindell

NAVAL EVENTS, NOVEMBER 1941 (Part 1 of 2)
Saturday 1st Friday 14th

HM S/M Stoic  (CyberHeritage, click to enlarge)

on to NOVEMBER 1941, Part 2

 

Note: all vessels and aircraft are British unless otherwise identified or implied - click for abbreviations

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

 


Background Events - June-November 1941

Invasion of Russia, Malta Convoys, Japan prepares for war


 

 

1941

           

 

Saturday, 1 November

 

Heavy cruiser BERWICK with destroyers PUNJABI and ESCAPADE departed Scapa Flow at 0430 for Rosyth, arriving at 1600 that day.

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Light cruiser ARETHUSA, escorted by destroyer VALOROUS and torpedo school ship LAIRDS ISLE, departed the Tyne to complete refit at Rosyth, where they arrived later that day.

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Light cruisers EDINBURGH and SHEFFIELD departed Scapa Flow for Hvalfjord, where they arrived on the 3rd.

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Aircraft carrier ARGUS and aircraft transport ATHENE departed the Clyde ferrying aircraft to Gibraltar, escorted by LAFOREY, HIGHLANDER, HAVELOCK, and HARVESTER.

 

On the 2nd, a Swordfish of ARGUS'  818 Squadron ditched and its pilot, Lt A. S. Campbell, and crew were picked up by destroyer LAFOREY.

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Convoy ON.32 departed Liverpool, escorted by New Zealand trawler MOA, en route to the Pacific. The convoy was joined on the 2nd by destroyers DOUGLAS, LEAMINGTON, and SKTA and corvettes ABELIA and ANEMONE. On the 6th, the 2 November reinforcements were detached when joined by destroyers RESTIGOUCHE and ST CROIX and corvettes AGASSIZ, ALBERNIE, ALYSSE, AMHERST, and BITTERSWEET. Destroyer RESTIGOUCHE was detached on the 13th and the rest of the escort, less trawler MOA, on the 14th. The convoy arrived at Halifax on the 16th.

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Destroyer BEAUFORT departed Liverpool at 1100 for the Clyde, carrying out speed trials en route.

 

The destroyer arrived at 2240 that day.

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The British Admiralty directed that destroyers ARROW, ANTELOPE, ACTIVE, ANTHONY, and ACHATES should join Western Approaches when former Force H destroyers FAULKNOR, FORESTER, FORESIGHT, and FURY become available to the Home Fleet.

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Destroyer CHELSEA was damaged in a collision with British trawler CANNING (148grt) at Liverpool.

 

The destroyer sustained only minor damage and spent no time out of service.

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U.68 sank British steamer BRADFORD CITY (4953grt) at 22-59S, 9-49E.

 

The entire crew were rescued when they rowed ashore.

 

South African anti-submarine trawlers BLOMVLEI and MOOIVLEI stood by the steamer.

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U.552 and U.567 made unsuccessful attacks on convoy HX.156, both claiming damaging steamers.

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British steamer KINGSLAND (3669grt) was damaged by German bombing in the North Sea.

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Swedish steamer BRAHEHOLM (5676grt) was damaged by British bombing off the Dutch coast.

 

One crewman was killed.

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Swedish steamer SIGRID (1093grt) was sunk on a mine near Kiel.

Ten crewmen were lost on the steamer.

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Rear Admiral Philip Vian assumed command of Cruiser Squadron 15 with his flag on light cruiser NAIAD.

 

The Mediterranean Fleet cruisers at that time were

 

Cruiser Squadron 7 (Rawlings) with AJAX, NEPTUNE, and Australian light cruiser HOBART

 

Cruiser Squadron 15 (Vian) with NAIAD, GALATEA, EURYALUS, and later by DIDO on 31 December.

 

The cruisers AJAX and NEPTUNE of Cruiser Squadron 7 were transferred to Malta as Force B and arrived there on the 29th.

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Force K of light cruisers AURORA and PENELOPE and destroyers LANCE and LIVELY departed Malta and were at sea during the night of 1/2 November.

 

No contact was made and the ships returned to Malta on the 2nd.

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Submarine UTMOST sank Italian steamer MARIGOLA (5996grt) 2.3 miles 165 from Kuriat Island.

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U.75 was attacked by British aircraft in 33-44N, 24-48E. The submarine received light damage.

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Wellington bombers attacked Italian steamer CAPO ARMA (3195grt), escorted by torpedo boat PROCIONE, en route to Benghasi from Brindisi. The steamer was damaged by the bombing, but was able to reach Benghasi on the 1st.

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A Swordfish of 830 Squadron failed to return from an operation in which six Swordfish unsuccessfully searched for a convoy. Sub Lt W. E. Cotton, Sub Lt D. H. Stokes RNVR, and Leading Airman E. A. Robson were picked up by an Italian ship after seven days adrift.

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Convoy OS.9G, escorted by Dutch destroyer ISAAC SWEERS, sloops FOWEY and LEITH, and corvette STONECROP, joined off Gibraltar by destroyer WILD SWAN, arrived at Gibraltar.

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Convoy SL.91G departed Gibraltar to join SL.91, escorted by corvette CARNATION and with destroyers SIKH and VIDETTE, corvette AZALEA, and anti-submarine trawlers STELLA CARINA and LADY HOGARTH. Destroyer VIDETTE and the trawlers were detached on the 6th and the rest on the 8th.

 

On the 2nd, sloop FOWEY and corvette STONECROP departed Gibraltar to overtake the convoy and proceed to England.

 

Sloop LEITH with corvettes HELIOTROPE and CAMPION departed Gibraltar on the 3rd escorting Dutch steamer TYSA to join convoy SL.91G. Destroyer WILD SWAN was local escort for this movement.

 

Destroyer DUNCAN and French sloop COMMANDANT DUBOC sailed on the 4th to join the convoy. The destroyer was en route to Chatham for refit.

 

When German raiders were reported as moving into the Atlantic, destroyers DUNCAN and SIKH returned to Gibraltar to escort Force H. Battleship RODNEY, at sea with destroyers ZULU, GURKHA, LIGHTNING, and ISAAC SWEERS to meet aircraft carrier ARGUS, was ordered to join destroyers HIGHLANDER, HAVELOCK, and HARVESTER in 55-40N, 17-45W. Oiler DINGLEDALE, escorted by corvettes JONQUIL and COREOPSIS and submarine CLYDE, departed Gibraltar on the 7th to patrol in position 34N, 30W.

 

Sloop COMMANDANT DUBOC had been detached from the convoy with defects and arrived at Gibraltar on the 7th.

On the 8th, destroyer DUNCAN departed Gibraltar to proceed to refitting at Chatham.

 

On the 8th, the joined convoys SL.91 and SL.91G split into SL.91GF and SL.91GS. SL.91GF arrived at Liverpool on the 18th and SL.91GS on the 19th.

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Lt A. C. Wilkinson with Leading Airman A.G. Gilbert and Leading Airman N. C. Moulden of light cruiser NEWCASTLE were killed when their Walrus of 700 Squadron crashed three and a half miles west of Bermuda on a dive bombing exercise.

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Soviet cruiser VOROSHILOV was mined and badly damaged off Fidonissi Island in the Black Sea.

 

The cruiser was repaired at Poti, completing in February 1942.

 

 

Sunday, 2 November

 

Battleship DUKE OF YORK departed Rosyth at 0800 with heavy cruiser BERWICK and destroyers PUNJABI and ESCAPADE for Scapa Flow, carrying out practices en route.

 

Destroyer TARTAR, en route from Sheerness to Scapa Flow, joined this force off May Island.

 

Heavy cruiser BERWICK arrived at Scapa Flow on the 2nd.

 

Destroyer IMPULSIVE departed Scapa Flow at 0700 pm 3 November to relieve destroyer PUNJABI on the screen of battleship DUKE OF YORK which was carrying out trials to the west of the Orkneys.

 

Destroyer PUNJABI arrived at Scapa Flow at 1010/3rd.

 

The battleship and her destroyers arrived at Scapa Flow later on the 3rd.

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Destroyer SOUTHWOLD departed Scapa Flow at 1200 for the Clyde on completion of a reduced working up program.

 

The destroyer was to carry out boiler cleaning at Greenock before proceeding with convoy WS.12 Z for service in the Mediterranean.

 

The destroyer arrived at 0730/3rd and began boiler cleaning.

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Submarine P.35 departed Scapa Flow to patrol off Norway.

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British steamer BRYNMILL 9743grt) was sunk by German bombing four miles 210 from 59A Buoy, East Dudgeon.

 

The entire crew were rescued.

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British steamer MARIE DAWN (2157grt) was badly damaged by German bombing twenty miles from Spurn Point.

 

The steamer sank on the 3rd four miles 210 from 59A Buoy, Humber. The entire crew were rescued.

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British fishing trawler CALIPH (226grt) was sunk by German bombing eleven miles south of Old Head of Kinsale.

 

One crewman died of wounds.

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British hopper barge FOREMOST 45 (824grt) was sunk by a mine in 51-21-10N, 51-21-06W.

 

One crewman was lost on the barge.

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U.208 sank British steamer LARPOOL (3872grt) 250 miles east, southeast of Cape Race.

 

Twenty two crewmen were missing and four died of wounds.

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British tanker AGILITY (522grt) and British steamer THYRA III (828grt) were damaged by German bombing in Great Yarmouth Roads.

 

The tanker arrived at Great Yarmouth on the 3rd.

 

The steamer was towed to Great Yarmouth arriving on the 3rd.

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Swedish steamer INGEREN (6123grt) was damaged by British bombing west of Borkum.

 

The steamer arrived at Emden for repairs.

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Battleship RODNEY, escorted by destroyers GURKHA, ZULU, LIGHTNING, and ISAAC SWEERS, departed Gibraltar to meet aircraft carrier ARGUS and aircraft transport ATHENE, escorted by destroyers LAFOREY, HIGHLANDER, HAVELOCK, and HARVESTER.

 

At 42N, 20W, the two groups met.

 

Battleship RODNEY with destroyers HIGHLANDER, HAVELOCK, and HARVESTER proceeded to Scapa Flow to return to the Home Fleet.

 

Aircraft carrier ARGUS, transport ATHENE, and destroyers LAFOREY, ZULU, GURKHA, LIGHTNING, and ISAAC SWEERS proceeded to Gibraltar, arriving on the 8th.

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Minelaying cruiser ABDIEL and destroyers carried troops to Famagusta to relieve the troops garrisoned there in Operation GLENCOE. About 250 troops were embarked in each destroyer and three hundred troops and seventy tons of stores were embarked in ABDIEL. The operations called for 11,000 Indian and 3400 British troops to be transport from Alexandria to Famagusta and 15,000 British troops to be transported from Famagusta to Palestine.

 

Forces were divided into three groups for the Operation.

 

Group A was minelaying cruiser ABDIEL (Rear Admiral Destroyers embarked) and destroyers JAGUAR and HASTY departing Alexandria at 1500 for Famagusta.

 

GroupB was destroyers JERVIS, KANDAHAR, KIMBERLEY, and KINGSTON departing Alexandria at 1700.

 

Group C was destroyers NAPIER, NIZAM, KIPLING, and JACKAL departing Alexandria at 1900.

 

En route destroyer KIPLING broke down in 31-46N, 30-22E at 2300/2nd. Her troops were transferred to destroyer JACKAL which took the destroyer in tow for Alexandria. Destroyer DECOY from Alexandria took over the tow at daylight on the 3rd. Destroyer JUPITER departed Alexandria and took destroyer KIPLING's place.

 

Groups A,B, and C arrived at Famagusta at 0730, 1230, and 1630, respectively. Rear Admiral Destroyers disembarked at Famagusta. The destroyers disembarked the troops and embarked equilavent contingents of troops. The ships departed for Haifa.

 

The ships of Group A andB arrived at Haifa during the night of 3/4 November. Group C arrived at 1400. All ships disembarked their troops, embarked Indian troops, and sailed for Cyprus at 0730, 1230, and 1630, respectively.

 

The groups arrived at Famagusta during the night of 4/5 November and sailed again at four hour intervals. They arrived at Haifa at 0400, 0830, and 1200, respectively. They departed again with Indian troops at 0700, noon, and 1630, respectively, on the 5th for Famagusta.

 

The Groups arrived at Famagusta on the 5th and sailed again with further contingents, arriving at Haifa at 0300, 0800, and 1200/6th. They departed Famagusta after embarking more troops and refuelling.

 

The destroyers departed Famagusta during the night of 6/7 November and arrived at Haifa on the 7th. They sailed again during the day with the final contingent for Famagusta. Rear Admiral Destroyers reembarked on cruiser minelayer ABDIEL. Destroyer KINGSTON remained at Haifa with defects and her troops were spread among the other ships of GroupB.

 

The ships arrived at Haifa at 0300, 0500, and noon on the 8th, respectively. At 1400/8th, the entire force departed for Haifa with minelaying cruiser ABDIEL and destroyers JERVIS, KANDAHAR, KIMBERLEY, KINGSTON, JAGUAR, HASTY, NAPIER, NIZAM, JACKAL, and JUPITER. The ships carried out an anti-submarine sweep as they returned to Alexandria, where they all arrived on the 9th.

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Minesweeper BAGSHOT sighted a submarine periscope 22 miles 282 from Ras el Tin. Destroyer DECOY and a motor anti-submarine boat were sent from Alexandria to assist. Anti-submarine whalers THORGRIM and KOS 19 were sent from patrol.

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Polish submarine SOKOL damaged Italian steamer BALILLA (2469grt) in 38-22N, 12-20E, northwest of Trapani with torpedoes and gunfire.

 

Subarine UTMOST sank the damaged BALILLA later in the day with gunfire.

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Submarine THRASHER unsuccessfully attacked a minelayer off Benghazi.

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French sloop D'IBERVILLE was escorting an unnumbered convoy of steamers ships CAP PADARAN (8009grt), BANGKOK (8056grt), COMPIEGNE (9986grt), CAP TOURAINE (8009grt), and COMMANDANT DORISE (5529grt) intercepted by six South African minesweeping whalers, supported by cruisers DEVONSHIRE and COLOMBO and armed merchant cruisers CARTHAGE and CARNARVON CASTLE south of the Cape of Good Hope in Operation BELLRINGER.

 

The ships, which departed Madagascar on 25 October, carried 900 tons of graphite and 30,000 tons of rice were taken by the British.

 

Sloop D'IBERVILLE withdrew unmolested.

 

Steamer CAP PADARAN was immobilised by her crew. She was taken in tow by cruiser armed merchant cruiser CARTHAGE, escorted by minesweeping whaler STELLENBERG and taken to Port Elizabeth.

 

Steamer BANGKOK was set on fire by her crew and abandoned, with light cruiser COLOMBO and whaler NIGEL taking off the crew.

 

The other three steamers were brought into South African ports. CAP TOURAINE was escorted by heavy cruiser DEVONSHIRE and minesweeping whaler STEENBERG to Port Elizabeth. COMMANDANT DORISE was escorted by armed merchant cruiser CARNARVON CASTLE and minesweeping whaler GUN 9 to East London. COMPIEGNE was escorted by light cruiser COLOMBO and minesweeping whaler NIGEL to East London.

 

The other two South African minesweeping whalers involved were SOUTHERN BARRIER and TERJE.

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Turkish auxiliary ship KAYNAKDERE (also identified as KARALTEPE, 145grt) was sunk bySoviet submarine SHCH 214 off Cape Midia.

 

The crew of eight were all rescued.

 

 

Monday, 3 November

 

Battleship KING GEORGE V, aircraft carrier VICTORIOUS, heavy cruisers KENT, BERWICK, and SUFFOLK, and destroyers SOMALI, ASHANTI, MATABELE, PUNJABI, OFFA, and ORIBI departed Scapa Flow at 1730 for Iceland.

 

Battleship KING GEORGE V, heavy cruisers BERWICK, KENT, and SUFFOLK, and destroyers SOMALI, MATABELE, and PUNJABI arrived at Hvalfjord at 0730/5th. Aircraft carrier VICTORIOUS and destroyers ASHANTI, OFFA, and ORIBI arrived independently at Hvalfjord after exercises.

 

At 1730/4th, destroyers TARTAR and ESKIMO departed Scapa Flow for Hvalfjord to join the Commander in Chief.

 

The destroyers arrived at 1000/6th.

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Destroyer ESCAPADE departed Scapa Flow at 1700 to boiler clean at Rosyth.

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Convoy ON.33 departed Liverpool. The convoy was joined on the 4th by destroyers BEAGLE and ROXBOROUGH, sloop COMMANDANT DETROYAT, corvettes HEATHER, LOBELIA, and NARCISSUS, and anti-submarine trawlers ARAB, LADY MADELEINE, NORWICH CITY, and STELLA CARINA. Destroyer ROXBOROUGH was detached on the 8th and destroyer BEAGLE and the trawlers, less LADY MADELEINE, on the 9th. Destroyer ST LAURENT and corvettes SNOWBERRY and TRAIL joined on the 10th. On the 11th, the sloop, the corvettes, and trawler LADY MADELEINE were detached when corvettes CHILIWACK, COLLINGWOOD, and PRIMROSE joined. Destroyer ST LAURENT was detached on the 13th. Corvette POLYANTHUS joined on the 16th and was detached the next day. Corvette COLLINGWOOD was detached on the 17th, TRAIL on the 18th, CHILLIWACK on the 19th, and SNOWBERRY on the 21st. Corvette PRIMROSE was detached on the 22nd when the convoy was dispersed.

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British patrol vessel OUZEL (76grt, T/LtG. W. Wilkinson RNR) was sunk on a mine one half mile east of Mablethorpe.

 

Wilkinson and the entire crew of the vessel were lost.

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Submarine TRIDENT sank German auxiliary patrol vessel UJ.1213 (whaler RAU IV, 354grt) in Honningsvaag in 70-58N, 26-58E.

 

German steamer ALTKIRCH (4713grt) was missed in the same attack.

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Convoy QP.2 departed Archangel with steamers ATLANTIC (5414grt), Panamanian CAPIRA (5565grt), GEMSTONE (4986grt), Soviet IJORA (2815grt), Panamanian NORTH KING (4934grt), BLAIRLEVIS (4155grt), Soviet CHEYNYSHEVSKI (3588grt), HARMONIC (4558grt), LORCA (4875grt), RIVER AFTON (4579grt), and VILLE D' ANVERS (7462grt).

 

Heavy cruiser NORFOLK, which departed Archangel at 2214 on the 2nd,escorted the convoy from 3 to 11 November. The cruiser proceeded to Scapa Flow.

 

Destroyers ECLIPSE and ICARUS, which departed Archangel at 2214 on the 2nd, escorted the convoy from 3 to 16 November, when they were detached to Kirkwall, arriving at 0800/17th and Scapa Flow at 1130 that day.

 

Minesweepers BRAMBLE, LEDA, and SEAGULL were local escorts from Archangel and escorted the convoy from 3 to 5 November.

 

Trawlers CELIA and WINDERMERE departed Hvalfjord at 2315/9th and joined the convoy on the 11th to relieve destroyers ECLIPSE and ICARUS. The trawlers escorted the convoy to 13 November.

 

The destroyers proceeded to Seidisfjord to refuel and rejoined on the 13th.

 

The convoy arrived on the 17th. The destroyers arrived at Scapa Flow on the 17th.

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U.569 sank British steamer ROSE SCHIAFFINO (3349grt) near Newfoundland from convoy SC.52.

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U.202 sank British steamers FLYNDERBORG (2022grt) and GRETAVALE (4586grt) in 51-21N, 51-45W from convoy SC.52. The submarine claimed sinking two other steamers.

 

Three crewmen were lost on the steamer FLYNDERBORG.

 

On steamer GRETAVALE, one crewman died, thirty six crewmen were missing, and five crewmen were rescued. All five of the gunners were missing.

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U.203 sank British steamer EMPIRE GEMSBUCK (5626grt) in 52-18N, 53-05W and British steamer EVEROJA (4830grt) 80 miles 77 from Belle Isle from convoy SC.52.

 

The entire crew of steamer EMPIRE GEMSBUCK were rescued.

 

The entire crew of steamer EVEROJA were rescued.

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In an attack on a German convoy in the Channel, MGB's claimed torpedoing and badly damaging a MOEWE class torpedo boat (note says MOEWE or GREIF) and sinking a 5000 ton ship.

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German minelayer KAISER laid mines in the Baltic.

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German steamer ANNELIESE (726grt) was lost on a mine off Dievenow.

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Submarine PROTEUS damaged Italian tanker TAMPICO (4958grt) in the Gulf of Athens three miles south of Mandili Island in 37-53N, 24-30E.

 

The submarine was counterattacked by Italian torpedo boats MONZAMBANO and CASTELFIDARDO.

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Submarine URGE unsuccessfully attacked a steamer north of Kuriat.

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Submarine UTMOST arrived at Malta after a special operation in the Gulf of Hammammet and patrol off Kuriat.

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Polish submarine SOKOL arrived at Malta after patrol off Naples.

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Aircraft carrier INDOMITABLE was damaged in grounding off Kingston, Jamaica.

 

Corvette CLARKIA, escorting the aircraft carrier, also ran aground.

 

The carrier arrived at Norfolk on the 12th. Aircraft carrier INDOMITABLE departed on 12 December.

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Convoy HX.158 departed Halifax escorted by destroyer ANNAPOLIS and corvettes ALGOMA, CHAMBLY, ORILLIA, and PICTOU. The escorts were detached when relieved on the 5th by American destroyers BUCK, COLE, LUDLOW, MCCORMICK, and SWANSON. Destroyer COLE was detached the next day. The American group was relieved on the 13th by destroyers BEAGLE and ROXBOROUGH, sloop COMMANDANT DETROYAT, corvettes HEATHER, LOBLIA, and NARCISSUS, and anti-submarine trawlers ARAB, KIRKELLA, LADY MADELEINE, NORWICH CITY, and STELLA CARINA. The trawlers, less KIRKELLA, were detached later that day. The escorts, less KIRKELLA, were detached on the 17th. The convoy arrived at Liverpool on the 18th.

 

 

Tuesday,  4 November

 

Light cruiser KENYA and destroyers BEDOUIN and INTREPID departed Seidisfjord at 2055 to cover the trawler patrol line west of the Iceland-Faroes minefield.

 

Convoy PQ.3, which these ships were to have escorted, were ordered to remain at Hvalfjord until further notice.

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Minelaying cruisers MANXMAN and WELSHMAN departed Loch Alsh at 2300 for Scapa Flow, where they arrived at 0800/5th.

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Destroyer WHEATLAND departed the Clyde at 1245 for Scapa Flow to carry out working up practices.

 

The destroyer arrived at 0815/5th.

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Destroyer MONTROSE departed Scapa Flow at 2030 for Rosyth.

 

The destroyer arrived at 0700/5th.

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Free French submarine MINERVE arrived at Dundee after patrol off Norway.

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British sailing vessel BRITISHER (95grt) was sunk on a mine just north of West Mouse Buoy, off Maplin.

 

Both crewmen were lost.

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Dutch motor vessel MADJOE (249grt) was sunk on a mine in 51-34-38N, 3-50-30W.

 

The crew of four, two gunners, and the pilot were all lost on the vessel.

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Italian submarine DANDOLO damaged French tanker TARN (4220grt) in 36N, 2E, off Algiers.

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Soviet destroyer SMETLIVY was mined off Hango.

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Greek destroyer KONDOURIOTIS departed Alexandria for docking at Suez.

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An Italian convoy of steamers BOSFORO (3567grt) and German SAVONA (2120grt), escorted by torpedo boat PEGASO departed Brindisi for Benghazi on the 4th.

 

The Benghazi convoy was sighted by British aircraft on the 8th as it left the Adriatic. The convoy was heavily attacked by Malta based aircraft.

 

Steamer SAVONA was damaged in the attack and returned to Brindisi.

 

Steamer BOSFORO and torpedo boat PEGASO put into Navarino.

 

The ships later departed and arrived at Benghazi on the 12th.

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Submarine TRUSTY arrived at Malta after off patrol off Cephalonia.

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Convoy SC.53 departed Sydney, CB escorted by corvettes BATTLEFORD, DUNVEGAN, and SOREL. Corvettes DUNVEGAN and SOREL were detached on the 6th when relieved by destroyer BURNHAM and corvettes ALGOMA, ARVIDA, CHAMBLY, DAUPHIN, and MATAPEDIA. American destroyer DALE was with the convoy on 10 to 12 November. Corvettes ALGOMA and BATTLEFORD were detached on the 11th. Destroyer BURNHAM and the remaining corvettes were detached on the 20th when relieved by destroyers CALDWELL, VANOC, and VOLUNTEER and corvettes HIBISCUS, PERIWINKLE, and SWEETBRIAR. The convoy arrived at Liverpool on the 24th.

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New Zealand light cruiser ACHILLES arrived at Auckland.

 

 

Wednesday, 5 November

 

Battleship KING GEORGE V, aircraft carrier VICTORIOUS, heavy cruisers KENT and BERWICK, and destroyers SOMALI, PUNJABI, ASHANTI, MATABELE, ORIBI, and OFFA departed Hvalfjord at 1800.

 

Light cruisers EDINBURGH (CS.18), heavy cruiser SUFFOLK, and light cruiser SHEFFIELD departed Hvalfjord at 1800 on patrol.

 

American heavy cruisers WICHITA and TUSCALOOSA departed Hvalfjord on patrol in response to a rumour that German heavy cruiser ADMIRAL SCHEER was breaking out of Norwegian waters.

 

American battleships IDAHO and MISSISSIPPI and destroyers GWIN, MEREDITH, and MONSSEN of Destroyer Division 22 departed Hvalfjord on patrol.

 

When intelligence indicated the German ship had returned to harbour, the allied warships ordered to return to Hvalfjord just before midnight.

 

The Commander in Chief, Home Fleet, arrived back at Hvalfjord on the 6th.

 

Light cruiser EDINBURGH, heavy cruiser SUFFOLK, and light cruiser SHEFFIELD arrived at Hvalfjord on the 6th.

 

American heavy cruisers WICHITA and TUSCALOOSA arrived at Hvalfjord on the 6th.

 

American battleships IDAHO and MISSISSIPPI and destroyers MEREDITH, GRAYSON, and MONSSON arrived at Hvalfjord on the 7th.

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Light cruiser ARETHUSA, after refitting, departed Rosyth and arrived at Scapa Flow later that day.

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Destroyer CHIDDINGFOLD departed Scapa Flow at 1000 with Vice Admiral Sir Bruce Fraser, Third Sea Lord, and Sir Stanley Goodall, Direction of Naval Construction, for passage to Scrabster.

 

The destroyer arrived back at 1330.

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Destroyer MONTROSE embarked Vice Admiral, Second in Command Home Fleet and his staff and departed Rosyth for Scapa Flow at 1600.

 

The destroyer arrived at Scapa Flow at 0800 the next day and disembarked her passengers alongside battleship DUKE OF YORK.

 

Vice Admiral, Second in Command Home Fleet, hoisted his flag in battleship DUKE OF YORK at 0900/6th.

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Destroyers ONSLOW, IMPULSIVE, and ANTELOPE departed Scapa Flow at 1730 for Londonderry.

 

The destroyers arrived at Londonderry on the 6th for refuelling. Following refuelling, the destroyers departed at 1700 to meet battleship RODNEY in 55-40N, 17-45W and relieve escorting destroyers HIGHLANDER, HAVELOCK, and HARVESTER.

 

The battleship was met in 55N, 12W at 1200/7th and the H class destroyers were relieved. The RODNEY force then proceeded to Loch Ewe to fuel.

 

The British force arrived at Loch Ewe at 0815/8th. Following refuelling, the ships departed at 1600 to carry out patrol on the Iceland - Faroes passage.

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British steamer GLENCREE (481grt) was damaged fifteen miles southwest of Bishops Light by German bombing and gunfire.

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German motor steamer KURT SANDKAMP (250grt) was sunk by British bombing in the Ems.

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Italian steamer ANNA ZIPPITELLI (1019grt) was sunk by British bombing in 31-49N, 18-25W, west of Benghazi.

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Italian steamer TORCELLO (3336grt) was sunk by Russian submarine SHCH 214 in the Black Sea.

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Australian sloop YARRA joined the Suez Escort Force, relieving sloop FALMOUTH, which returned to the East Indies Station.

_____

 

British steamers CITY OF LINCOLN and DUNEDIN STAR departed Gibraltar for Capetown and Panama, respectively.

_____

 

Japanese steamer KEHI MARU (4523grt) was sunk on a mine in the Sea of Japan in 40-40N, 131E.

 

Of eighty crewmen and four hundred and thirty passengers, twenty were lost and one hundred and eleven were missing.

 

 

Thursday, 6 November

 

Destroyer MONTROSE departed Scapa Flow with Rear Admiral Destroyers Home Fleet for passage to Scrabster.

 

The destroyer arrived back at Scapa Flow at 1330.

_____

 

Light cruiser KENYA and destroyers BEDOUIN and INTREPID were ordered to return to Seidisfjord from Iceland - Faroes patrol. After refuelling, the ships would proceed to cover minelaying operation SN.83B, sailing on the 8th. However, in heavy weather, the destroyers were forced to return to Seidisfjord.

 _____

 

Light cruiser TRINIDAD departed the Clyde for Scapa Flow, arriving on the 7th.

_____

 

Destroyer BEAUFORT departed the Clyde at 1630 for Scapa Flow.

 

The destroyer arrived at 2100/7th for working up practices.

_____

 

Submarine SEALION arrived at Murmansk from Scapa Flow.

_____

 

15th Cruiser Squadron was at sea from Alexandria for gunnery exercises.

_____

 

Anti-submarine whaler KOS 19 sighted a periscope thirty two miles west of Alexandria at 2220/5th.

 

The whaler was joined by anti-submarine whaler FALK, corvette SNAPDRAGON, and anti-submarine boat MA/SB 2.

 

Destroyer ENCOUNTER was also sent from Alexandria to assist.

 

Destroyers DECOY and HOTSPUR joined at daylight on the 6th.

 

The destroyers were recalled to harbour at 1800 and no success was obtained.

 

Oil patches were sighted in this area on the 7th and destroyers KIPLING and HOTSPUR were sent to hunt in the area.

 

The search continued during the night of 7/8 November. Destroyer ENCOUNTER joined the destroyers at daylight and the three destroyers were then involved in screening light cruiser NEPTUNE during a practice bombardment at Aboukir.

 

The destroyers returned to Alexandria on the 9th.

_____

 

Armed boarding vessel ARPHA fractured her propeller shaft while laying beacons at AnchorageG (Ginsah) in the Suez Gulf.

 

The vessel was beached at Towila. Indian sloop SUTLEJ was sent to assist her. On the 9th, the vessel was refloated and towed by tug CONFEDERATE, screened by sloop SUTLEJ, to Gimsah.

 

Vessel ARPHA, in tow of tug CONFEDERATE and escorted by sloop SUTLEJ, arrived at Suez on the 14th.

_____

 

Light cruiser MAURITIUS arrived at Singapore with convoy WS.11X from Colombo.

_____

 

American light cruiser OMAHA and destroyer SOMERS captured German blockade runner ODENWALD (5098grt), which had departed Yokohama on 21 August carrying Japanese rubber to Germany, off Recife in the South Atlantic.

_____

 

Convoy SL.92 departed Freetown escorted bydestroyers VANSITTART and VELOX to 11 November and corvettes BURDOCK and MARGUERITE to 11 November and corvette STARWORT to 12 November. On the 11th, sloop EGRET to 29 November and escort vessels BANFF and FISHGUARD to 1 December joined the convoy.

 

On the 12th, heavy cruiser DORSETSHIRE and light cruiser DUNEDIN joined the convoy to 13 November.

 

Destroyers BADSWORTH, CROOME, FORESIGHT, and FURY joined on the 24th to 25 November and destroyer FORESTER joined on the 25th for that day only.

 

Corvette MONTBRETIA and anti-submarine trawler MAN O.WAR escorted the convoy on the 30th only. Anti-submarine trawler ARAB escorted the convoy on 1 December only.

 

The convoy arrived at Liverpool on 1 December.

 

 

Friday, 7 November

 

Heavy cruiser BERWICK departed Hvalfjord on Denmark Strait patrol.

_____

 

Destroyer ECHO departed London at 0800 for Sheerness on completion of a long refit.

 

The destroyer arrived at 1400 to embark ammunition and fuel.

 

Destroyer ECHO departed Sheerness at 1330/8th for Scapa Flow, arriving at 0830/10th. En route, destroyer ECHO assisted damaged tug BUCCANEER.

_____

 

Convoy ON.34 departed Liverpool, escorted by destroyers CALDWELL, VANOC, and VOLUNTEER and corvettes ACANTHUS, GENTIAN, HIBISCUS, HONEYSUCKLE, MYOSOTIS, and SWEETBRIAR. Corvettes CHICOUTIM and SHERBROOKE joined on the 8th and SHERBROOKE was detached later that day. Corvettes HIBISCUS, PERIWINKLE, and SWEETBRIAR were detached on the 10th. The remainder of the escort was detached on the 12th when joined by American destroyers BENSON, EDISON, HILARY P. JONES, NIBLACK, and TARBELL. The convoy was dispersed on the 21st and the escort detached.

_____

 

Destroyer MONTROSE departed Scapa Flow for Loch Alsh to act under Rear Admiral Minelaying.

 

The destroyer arrived at 1700.

_____

 

Destroyer NORMAN departed Scapa Flow at 1345 for Wick to embark Crown Prince Olaf of Norway and his staff for passage to Scapa Flow.

 

The destroyer arrived back at Scapa Flow at 1700.

_____

 

Sloop LOWESTOFT departed Scapa Flow at 1500 to join convoy WN 2 for onward passage to Rosyth.

 

Sloop LOWESTOFT had completed working up practices and was being assigned to Commander in Chief, Rosyth.

_____

 

Minesweeper ALBURY damaged by a near miss of German bombing off the east coast of Scotland.

 

The damage required five weeks to repair.

_____

 

Submarine TRIDENT made an unsuccessful attack on minesweeper MRS 3 (steamer BALI (1428grt) in 71-6N, 26-57E.

_____

 

Convoy OS.11 departed Liverpool.

 

The convoy was joined by destroyer CLARE, sloops ABERDEEN, ENCHANTRESS, IBIS, and STORK on the 8th. The destroyer was detached on the 25th, sloops ABERDEEN, ENCHANTRESS, and IBIS on the 26th, and STORK on the 16th. Also joining on the 8th were corvettes COLTSFOOT and ORCHIS, and escort vessel WALNEY. Corvette COLTSFOOT was detached on the 12th, escort vessel WALNEY on the 25th, and corvette ORCHIS arrived with the convoy on the 28th.

 

On the 10th, escort vessel HARTLAND joined the convoy and was detached on the 25th.

 

On the 24th, destroyer BRILLIANT, corvettes BERGAMOT, CROCUS, and NIGELLA, and anti-submarine whaler SOUTHERN PRIDE joined the convoy and arrived with the convoy at Freetown on the 28th.

_____

 

German steamer FRAUENBURG (2111grt) was sunk on a mine off Windau.

_____

 

U.74 sank British steamer NOTTINGHAM (8532grt) in 53-24N, 31-51W.

 

The entire crew of the steamer were lost.

_____

 

Italian convoy BETA departed Naples for Tripoli on the 7th with troopships German DUISBERG (7389grt), SAN MARCO (3113grt), MARIA (6339grt), and SAGITTA (5153grt) and tanker MINATITLAN (7599grt) from Naples and RINA CORRADO (5180grt) and tanker CONTE DI MISURATA (5014grt) from Messina, escorted by destroyers MAESTRALE, EURO, FULMINE, GRECALE, ORIANI, and LIBECCIO. The convoy was covered by heavy cruisers TRENTO and TRIESTE and destroyers GRANATIERE, FUCLIERE, BERSAGLIERE, and ALPINO which departed Messina on the 8th.

 

X MAESTRALE (S. O. )

 

X LIBECCIOX EURO

convoy

X ORIANIX FULMINE

 

X GRECALE

 

On the 8th, light cruisers AURORA and PENELOPE and destroyers LANCE and LIVELY departed Malta to attack this convoy.

 

At 0100/9th, the convoy was attacked by Force K.

 

The entire convoy and destroyer FULMINE were sunk. Destroyers EURO and GRECALE were damaged by the British ships.

 

Destroyer GRECALE was taken in tow by destroyer ORIANI.

 

Destroyers MAESTRALE, EURO, ORIANI, ALPINO, FUCLIERE, and BERSAGLIERE rescued 704 survivors from the convoy.

 

Destroyer LIBECCIO, rescuing survivors, was torpedoed at 0640 by Submarine UPHOLDER in 36-50N, 18-10E. The destroyer was taken in tow by destroyer EURO, but was sunk when she experienced an internal collapse.

 

Submarine UPHOLDER at 1107 on the 9th, unsuccessfully attacked the heavy cruisers TRENTO and TRIESTE in 37-12N, 18-33E.

_____

 

Submarine UPHOLDER departed Malta for patrol off Cephalonia.

_____

 

In operations from escort aircraft carrier AUDACITY, supporting convoy OG.76, the Martlet piloted by Sub Lt (A) N. H. Patterson while landing in heavy seas went over the side.

 

Patterson was picked up by an escort ship.

 

 

Saturday, 8 November

 

Destroyer HURWORTH departed Scapa Flow at 0230 for Loch Ewe carrying sixty bags of mail for battleship RODNEY and the destroyers on her screen.

 

The destroyer arrived at 0850 and sailed again at 1050 for Scapa Flow, carry out gunnery firing practices off the Orkneys on the return passage.

_____

 

Rear Admiral Minelaying departed Loch Alsh at 0800 to carry out minelaying operation SN.83B.

_____

 

German steamer FLOTTBEK (1930grt) was sunk on a mine laid by Russian submarine K.1 on 27 October in Mageroy Sund.

_____

 

Norwegian steamer VICTO (3655grt) was sunk by German bombing 1.8 miles 330 from 18B Buoy, Scarborough in 54-20N, 0-17W. Two crewmen were killed on the steamer.

_____

 

British fishing trawler CRADOCK (204grt) was sunk by German bombing fourteen miles north, northeast of St Abb's Head. The entire crew were rescued.

_____

 

British drifter MONARDA (109grt) foundered in the Thames Estuary.

_____

 

British steamer GASLIGHT (1696grt) was damaged by German bombing two cables southeast of S.1 Buoy off Sutherland. The steamer was towed to Sutherland arriving on the 9th.

_____

 

Italian submarine DANDOLO sank Spanish steamer CASTILLO OROPESA (6600grt) near Melilla. The entire crew were rescued.

_____

 

Lt Cdr J. M. Wintour Rtd of 802 Squadron in aircraft carrier AUDACITY was lost when his plane was shot down engaged German aircraft attacking convoy OG.76.

 

Destroyer WANDERER of the escort recovered Wintour's body.

 

The Kondor that shot down Wintour's Martlett was shot down by Sub Lt D. A. Hutchison.

_____

 

Corvette SPIRAEA departed Gibraltar to meet and escort Norwegian tanker THORSHAVET to Gibraltar.

 

On the 15th, corvette AZALEA departed to join the arriving ships. All three arrived on the 17th.

_____

 

Submarine UPHOLDER unsuccessfully attacked a submarine in 36-19N, 16-22E.

_____

 

Convoy HX.159 departed Halifax, escorted by destroyer ANNAPOLIS and corvettes KAMLOOPS and SASKATOON. The escort was relieved on the 10th by American destroyers BADGER, COLE, DECATUR, LIVERMORE, and PLUNKETT. On the 18th, destroyer SABRE, corvettes ALISMA and SUNFLOWER, and American Coast Guard cutter CAMPBELL joined the convoy. The American destroyers were detached on the 19th and destroyer ROCKINGHAM and corvette KINGCUP joined. The Coast Guardcutter and corvette SUNFLOWER were detached on the 22nd. Anti-submarine trawlers LADY ELSA, LE TIGRE, and WELLARD escorted the convoy in Home Waters. The convoy arrived at Liverpool on the 23rd.

 

 

Sunday, 9 November

 

British minefield SN.83B was laid by minelayers MENETHEUS and PORT QUEBEC, escorted by destroyers BRIGHTON, NEWARK, CHARLESTOWN, and MONTROSE.

 

The operation was covered by light cruiser KENYA.

 

After the operation, light cruiser KENYA was ordered to return to Seidisfjord to refuel and then join convoy PQ.3 north of Iceland. The cruiser arrived at Seidisfjord at 1200/12th.

 

Destroyer MONTROSE arrived at Scapa Flow at 0800/12th after being detached at the Minches.

 

The Minelaying Force arrived at Loch Alsh at 0700/9th.

_____

 

Convoy ON.35 departed Liverpool. The convoy was joined on the 10th by destroyers KEPPEL, ROCKINGHAM, and VENOMOUS, corvettes ALISMA, SHERBROOKE, and SUNFLOWER, and anti-submarine trawlers BUTTERMERE, LADY ELSA, THIRLMERE and WELLARD. Destroyers KEPPEL and VENOMOUS were detached on the 12th. The rest of the escort was detached when relieved by American destroyers DALLAS, EBERLE, ELLIS, ERICSSON, and UPSHUR on the 15th. The convoy dispersed on the 27th and the destroyers were detached.

_____

 

Convoy PQ.3 departed Hvalfjord with steamers BRIARWOOD (4019grt), CAPE RACE (3807grt), Panamanian EL CAPITAN (5255grt), TREK IEVE (5244grt), CAPE CORSO (3807grt), Panamanian COCLE (5630grt), SAN AMBROSIO (7410grt), and WANSTEAD (5486grt), escorted by trawlers HAMLET and MACBETH.

 

Trawler HAMLET was detached on the 14th and returned with steamer BRIARWOOD, which had been damaged by ice. Trawler MACBETH was detached on the 15th.

 

Destroyers BEDOUIN and INTREPID and later light cruiser KENYA departed Seidisfjord on the 13th and joined the convoy on the 14th in 70-30N, 5-00W.

 

On the 19th, Soviet Gerneral Gromov and the Russian Mission was transferred from light cruiser KENYA to destroyer BEDOUIN for onward passage to Archangel.

 

The convoy was met by minesweepers BRAMBLE, SEAGULL, and SPEEDY on the 20th. The convoy arrived at Murmansk at 1100/21st and light cruiser KENYA remained there. The convoy continued to Archangel with local escort only arriving on the 22nd. Destroyers BEDOUIN and INTREPID and minesweeper BRAMBLE arrived at Murmansk on the 22nd. Minesweepers SEAGULL and SPEEDY arrived at Murmansk from Archangel on the 24th.

_____

 

Tug BUCCANEER with a battle practice target in tow was badly damaged by German bombing off Montrose.

 

Destroyer ECHO, en route from Sheerness to Scapa Flow, was ordered to proceed to assist the tug. When the tug drifted ashore, the destroyer was ordered to continue to Scapa Flow.

 

The tug was later salved.

_____

 

British drifter BOY ANDREW (97grt, Skipper G. F. Ball RNR) was sunk in a collision in the Firth of Forth.

 

Ball was lost in the drifter.

_____

 

Tug LETTIE (89grt) was lost off St Abb's Head.

_____

 

Submarine OLYMPUS unsuccessfully attacked Italian store ship MAURO CROCE (1049grt) in the Gulf of Genoa .

_____

 

Submarine PORPOISE arrived at Malta from Gibraltar with naval stores and kerosene.

_____

 

Dutch submarine O.21 departed Gibraltar for patrol in the Mediterranean.

 

 

Monday, 10 November

 

Heavy cruiser CUMBERLAND departed Scapa Flow at 1600 to join the Commander in Chief's force at Hvalfjord.

 

The cruiser arrived on the 12th.

_____

 

Destroyer ESCAPADE departed Rosyth at 0800 for Scapa Flow on completion of boiler cleaning.

 

The destroyer arrived at 0030/11th, sustaining weather damage en route.

_____

 

Destroyer PYTCHLEY departed the Tyne at 0900 for Methil to land trial parties before proceeding to Scapa.

 

Due to bad weather, the destroyer was ordered to Leith, where she arrived at 1500.

_____

 

Destroyer MAORI departed Scapa Flow at 1600 for the Clyde on completion of a short working up program.

 

The destroyer arrived at 1215/11th.

_____

 

Submarine SEAWOLF arrived at Murmansk from Scapa Flow.

_____

 

Lt E. A. Holloway was killed when his Martlett of 888 Squadron crashed on approach three miles north of Bishops Waltham, Hants.

_____

 

Swedish steamer VOLLRATH THAM (5787grt) was sunk on a mine one and half miles from Hubert Gat.

 

The crew was rescued and taken to a German port.

_____

 

Examination vessel LONGSCAR was damaged by German bombing near misses off Middlesbrough in 54-41-30N, 1-09-45W.

_____

 

Battleship MALAYA, aircraft carriers ARK ROYAL and ARGUS, light cruiser HERMIONE, and destroyers LAFOREY, LEGION, LIGHTNING, GURKHA, SIKH, ZULU, and ISAAC SWEERS for Operation PERPETUAL.

On the 12th, the carriers flew aircraft off to Malta.

 

On the 13th, U.205 attacked a destroyer and aircraft carrier ARK ROYAL unsuccessfully.

 

On the 13th, aircraft carrier ARK ROYAL was torpedoed by U.81 in 36-03N, 4-45W.

 

Destroyer WILD SWAN, tugs ST DAY and THAMES, and motor launches ML.121, ML.130, ML.132, ML.135, ML.170, ML.172, and ML.176 departed Gibraltar to assist.

 

Tugs THAMES and ST DAY arrived and took the carrier in tow.

 

The aircraft carrier sank at 0613 on the 14th. Only one rating Able Seaman E. Mitchell was lost in the aircraft carrier.

 

Battleship MALAYA, aircraft carrier ARGUS, and light cruiser HERMIONE arrived at Gibraltar on the 13th.

_____

 

Ocean boarding vessel MARSDALE arrived at Gibraltar after Western Patrol.

_____

 

Battleship BARHAM, light cruiser GALATEA, and destroyers KANDAHAR, KINGSTON, KIMBERLEY, and JUPITER departed Alexandria to exercise.

_____

 

Light cruiser EURYALUS arrived at Suez from the United Kingdom to join the Mediterranean Fleet.

 

The light cruiser arrived at Alexandria on the 11th.

_____

 

Submarine PROTEUS sank German steamer ITHAKA (1773grt) off Milos.

_____

 

Greek submarine GLAUKOS damaged German steamer NORBURG (2392grt) off Candia.

_____

 

Submarine UPHOLDER arrived at Malta after parol.

_____

 

Allied convoy WS.12X departed Halifax with the British troops delivered in convoy CT 5/7th in US transports MOUNT VERNON, LEONARD WOOD, JOSEPH T. DICKMAN, ORIZABA, WEST POINT, and WAKEFIELD escorted by American aircraft carrier RANGER (Flag Rear Admiral Arthur Cook; Harrill), heavy cruisers QUINCY (Battle) and VINCENNES (Riefkohl), and Destroyer Squadron 8 with destroyers WAINWRIGHT and MOFFETT, Destroyer Division 17 with destroyers MCDOUGAL and WINSLOW, and Destroyer Division 16 with destroyers MAYRANT, RHIND, ROWAN, and TRIPPE.

 

Oiler CIMARRON joined on the 19th at Trinidad.

 

Aircraft carrier RANGER was detached at 17S, 20W and returned to Trinidad escorted by destroyers TRIPPE and RHIND. Battle on cruiser QUINCY relieved Cook on aircraft carrier RANGER as force commander.

 

The convoy arrived at Capetown on 9 December. The original destination was Basra, but the convoy was ordered to Singapore, via Bombay.

 

The US escorts were detached at Capetown.

 

The convoy sailed on 13 December escorted by heavy cruiser DORSETSHIRE. The US destroyers were employed for a local anti-submarine screen to 14 December and arrived back at Capetown on 15 December.

 

On 16 December, heavy cruisers QUINCEY and VINCENNES and destroyers MACDOUGLA, MAYRANT, WINSLOW, ROWAN, WAINWRIGHT, and MOFFET departed Capetown for the Caribbean.

 

On 21 December, light cruiser CERES met the convoy and took liner ORIZABA to Mombasa.

 

The convoy arrived at Bombay on 27 December.

 

Liner MOUNT VERNON was detached to meet light cruiser COLOMBO on 23 December, but the rendezvous was not kept. The liner proceeded to Mombasa to join convoy DM.1.

_____

 

Convoy SC.54 departed Sydney, CB, escorted by corvettes BATTLEFORD, DRUMHELLER, DUNVEGAN, SOREL, and SUMMERSIDE, and minesweeper NIPIGON. These corvettes were relieved on the 12th by destroyers COLUMBIA and SKEENA and corvettes ACONIT, BRANDON, CAMROSE, MIMOSA, SHEDIAC, and WETASKIWIN. Destroyers COLUMBIA and SKEENA and corvettes ACONIT, MIMOSA, SHEDIAC, and WETASKIWIN were detached on the 22nd when relieved by destroyers BROKE and WOLVERINE and corvettes BEGONIA, EGLANTINE, LARKSPUR, and MONTBRETIA. Corvette BRANDON was detached on the 25th. The convoy arrived at Liverpool on the 26th.

_____

 

New Zealand light cruiser ACHILLES departed Auckland with a US liner for Sydney.

 

 

Tuesday, 11 November

 

Battleship RODNEY and destroyers ONSLOW, IMPULSIVE, and ANTELOPE on patrol off the Faroes - Iceland passage were ordered to Hvalfjord at 0144.

 

The ships arrived at Hvalfjord on the 12th.

_____

 

Heavy cruiser KENT departed Hvalfjord for exercises and then patrol in the Faroes - Iceland passage.

_____

 

Minesweeper SHARPSHOOTER departed Cardiff for Scapa Flow at 0012.

 

The minesweeper arrived at 0730/13th.

_____

 

Minesweeper BLYTH was damaged by German bombing off Dartmouth.

 

The damage required sixteen days to repair.

_____

 

T/Sub Lt (A)G. Black, RNZVR, was died of injuries after his Swordfish flew into high ground at Durham.

_____

 

A/Leading Airman S. H. Tyson of 1 SFTS Netheravon was killed when his Battle crashed at Shrewton LG.

_____

 

U.561 sank Panamanian steamer MERIDIAN (5592grt), straggling behind convoy SC.53, in the North Atlantic.

_____

 

U.580 was sunk in a collision with German target vessel ANGELBURG (3053grt) during night excercises off Memel.

 

Twelve crewmen were lost in the submarine. Thirty two crewmen were rescued.

_____

 

Battleship VALIANT, light cruiser HOBART, and four destroyers were at sea from Alexandria on exercises.

 

The 7th Destroyer Flotilla was also at sea exercising.

_____

 

Convoy ST.8 departed Freetown, escorted by sloop BRIDGEWATER, corvettes CLOVER, HOLLYHOCK, and WALLFLOWER, and anti-submarine trawlers KELT and SARABANDE. The convoy arrived at Takoradi on the 16th.

_____

 

Australian light cruiser SYDNEY departed Fremantle to escort British troopship ZEALANDIA (6683grt), which had departed Sydney escorted by light cruiser ADELAIDE for Singapore.

 

Light cruiser DURBAN relieved light cruiser SYDNEY on the 17th.

 

The Australian light cruiser was to return to Fremantle, arriving on the 20th.

 

 

Wednesday,  12 November

 

Heavy cruiser KENT arrived at Hvalfjord from Denmark Strait patrol.

_____

 

Destroyer HURWORTH departed Scapa Flow at 0930 for Scrabster with His Royal Highness Crown Prince Olaf of Norway.

 

The destroyer arrived back at 1200 and embarked her motor boat. Destroyer HURWORTH departed Scapa Flow for the Clyde to boiler clean prior to proceeding to the Mediterranean.

_____

 

Destroyer PYTCHLEY departed Leith for Scapa Flow at 1645.

 

The destroyer arrived at 0900/13th to carry out working up practices.

_____

 

Submarine SEALION departed Murmansk for patrol off Svaerholthavet.

_____

 

Convoy WS.12Z departed Liverpool and the Clyde and rendezvoused off Oversay on the 13th with steamers ADRASTUS, EMPIRE STAR, SUSSEX, MATAROA, DUCHESS OF BEDFORD, EMPRESS OF ASIA, NARKUNDA, EMPRESS OF JAPAN, AORANGI, ARUNDEL CASTLE, ORDUNA, MONARCH OF BERMUDA, CAPETOWN CASTLE, DEUCALION, ABBEKERK, and RIMUTAKA.

 

The convoy was escorted by destroyers WHITEHALL, WITCH, BADSWORTH, VANQUISHER, and EXMOOR from 13 to 16 November.

 

Destroyer MAORI was with the convoy from 13 to 17 November. The destroyer arrived at Gibraltar on the 20th for duty in the 19th Destroyer Flotilla.

 

Battleship ROYAL SOVEREIGN and destroyers FURY, FORESTER, and FORESIGHT departed the Clyde on the 12th to join the convoy. They were route via Milford Haven and south of Ireland. On the 13th, the warships arrived at Milford Haven and departed later that day to join the convoy.

 

Destroyers FURY, FORESIGHT, and FORESTER escorted the convoy from 16 to 19 November.

 

On the 19th, destroyers FORESIGHT, FORESTER, and FURY parted company with the convoy in 34-05N, 25-50W to refuel from oiler DINGLEDALE. The destroyers then proceeded to search for an enemy merchant ship report.

 

The oiler arrived back at Gibraltar on the 25th, escorted by corvettes JONQUIL and COREOPSIS.

 

Destroyer FORESTER later proceeded to Ponta Delgada to complete fuelling. She departed on the 22nd and rejoined destroyers FORESIGHT and FURY.

 

Battleship ROYAL SOVEREIGN and destroyers DULVERTON and SOUTHWOLD escorted the convoy from 16 to 24 November.

 

Destroyers VIMY and VELOX escorted the convoy from 21 to 24 November.

 

Corvette CLOVER escorted the convoy from 22 to 24 November.

 

The convoy arrived at Freetown on the 24th.

 

On the 24th, the convoy departed Freetown with SUSSEX, ADRASTUS, EMPIRE STAR, DUCHESS OF BEDFORD, EMPRESS OF ASIA, MATAROA, NARKUNDA, EMPRESS OF JAPAN, ARUNDEL CASTLE, MONARCH OF BERMUDA, AORANGI, CAPETOWN CASTLE, ORDUNA, DEUCALION, RIMUTAKA, and ABBEKERK.

 

The convoy was escorted by destroyers SOUTHWOLD and DULVERTON from 28 November to 14 December.

 

Battleship ROYAL SOVEREIGN escorted the convoy from 28 November to 18 December.

 

Sloop MILFORD and corvettes VERBENA and HOLLYHOCK escorted the convoy from 28 November to 15 December.

 

Corvettes ASTER and MARGUERITE escorted the convoy from 15 December to 18 December, when the convoy arrived at Durban.

 

The convoy departed Durban on 24 December with NIEUW AMSTERDAM, EMPRESS OF JAPAN, ORDUNA, DUCHESS OF BEDFORD, NARKUNDA, EMPIRE STAR, DEUCALION, ADRASTUS, ARONDA, INDRAPOERA, EASTERN PRINCE, CAPETOWN CASTLE, SUSSEX, AORANGI, and ABBEKERK, escorted by battleship ROYAL SOVEREIGN.

 

The convoy off Mombasa on 31 December was split into three units.

 

Convoy WS.12 ZA of ORDUNA, ARONDA, EASTERN PRINCE, and NIEUW AMSTERDAM was detached at 1-26S, 48-44E, escorted by light cruiser COLOMBO.

 

Convoy WS.12 ZA arrived at Aden on 4 January.

 

Convoy WS.12 ZB was steamers CAPETOWN CASTLE, EMPRESS OF JAPAN, DUCHESS OF BEDFORD, INDRAPOERA, DEUCALION, ADRASTUS, and EMPIRE STAR, plus US liner ORIZABA which had been brought out from Mombasa by light cruiser COLOMBO. The convoy was detached at 1-26S, 48-44E and escorted by heavy cruiser CORNWALL.

 

Convoy WS.12 ZB arrived at Bombay on 6 January.

 

Convoy DM.1 of liners NARKUNDA, AORANGI, SUSSEX, and US MOUNT VERNON was detached at 1-26S, 48-44S and escorted by light cruiser EMERALD.

 

The convoy proceeded to Addu Atoll. The convoy was then escorted by heavy cruiser EXETER, light cruisers EMERALD and DURBAN, and sloop JUMNA from 9 January.

 

Dutch light cruiser DE RUYTER escorted the convoy on 10 January only. Destroyers JUPITER, ENCOUNTER, and VAMPIRE escorted the convoy from 10 to 13 January. Cruisers DE RUYTER and TROMP escorted the convoy on 11 and 12 January.

 

The convoy arrived at Singapore on 13 January.

_____

 

British cable ship FRANCOLIN (ex-FARADAY, 322grt, T/A/Skipper Lt J. Dinwoodie RNR) was sunk by German bombing two miles N 25 E from Haisborough Light House.

_____

 

British steamer trawler BEN SCREEL (195grt) was damaged by German bombing fourteen miles northeast by north of St Abb's Head.

_____

 

British steamer MAURITA (199grt) was sunk on a mine at Hilbre Swash, in the Dee Estuary.

_____

 

Soviet light cruiser CHERVONAYA UKRANIA was sunk by bombing at Sevastapool.

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Soviet destroyer SOVERSHENNY, under repairs at Sevastapool, was damaged further by German bombing.

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Soviet steamer KRASNY PROFINTERN (4648grt) was damaged by German bombing in the Black Sea.

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Destroyers FARNDALE and HEYTHROP arrived at Aden to join the Mediterranean Fleet. They were sailed for Suez.

 

The destroyers had accompanied light cruiser EURYALUS for most of the passage.

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Greek destroyer AETOS departed Alexandria to transit the Suez Canal, en route to refitting in India.

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Greek submarine GLAUKOS sank a caique north of Crete with gunfire.

 

On the 14th, the submarine sank a second caique north of Crete with gunfire.

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Submarine PORPOISE departed Malta for Alexandria.

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During a sweep during the night of 11/12 November, seven Swordfish of 830 Swordfish took off to attack a convoy of two merchant ships and escorts reported west of Pantelleria. Swordfish piloted by Lt P. E. O'Brien, Sub Lt (A) M. Thorpe, and T/A/Sub Lt (A) R. S. Vercoe RNVR, were forced to return to Malta with engine problems. The other four Swordfish were lost when the aircraft ran out of fuel.

 

Lt Cdr J.G. Hunt, Lt G. M. T. Osborn DSC, and Sergeant M. Parke; T/A/Sub Lt (A) S. W. L. Campbell RNVR, and Leading Airman J. R. Fallon; T/Sub Lt (A) R. W. Taylor RNVR, and P/T/A/Sub Lt (A) F. L. Robinson RNVR,were rescued and made prisoners of war. Lt (A) A. F. Wigram RNVR, and Leading Airman K. D. Griffiths were not found.

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Convoy SL.91GF departed Gibraltar escorted by sloops FOWEY and BLACK SWAN to 18 November, ocean boarding vessel MARON to 15 November, and corvettes CAMPION and HELIOTROPE to 16 Novemberand CARNATION and STONECROP to 18 November.

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Convoy SL.91 GS departed Gibraltar escorted by destroyer WRESTLER to 16 November, sloops FLEETWOOD, LEITH, SANDWICH, and SCARBOROUGH to 19 November, and corvettes ANCHUSA, CALENDULA, MIGNONETTE to 19 November.

 

Corvettes ACANTHUS, GENTIAN, and HONEYSUCKLE to 19 November, and MYOSOTIS to 15 November joined on the 13th. Anti-submarine whaler SOUTHERN STAR joined on the 17th to 18 November.

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Submarine OLYMPUS arrived at Gibraltar from patrol in the Mediterranean.

 

 

Thursday, 13 November

 

Light cruiser SHEFFIELD departed Hvalfjord for Faroes - Iceland patrol.

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Destroyer ECHO departed Scapa Flow at 0830 for Hvalfjord to join the Commander in Chief, Home Fleet.

 

The destroyer carried mail for the fleet. The destroyer arrived at 0940/15th.

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Destroyer BRIGHTON departed Loch Alsh at 1900 to carry out docking and repairs at Scapa Flow.

 

The destroyer arrived at 0830/14th.

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Convoy ON.36 departed Liverpool escorted by destroyers BROKE, CHELSEA, and WOLVERINE, corvettes BEGONIA, EGLANTINE, and LARKSPUR. Destroyer CHELSEA was detached on the 16th when destroyer BROADWAY joined. Destroyer BROADWAY was detached later that day. On the 18th, the escorts were relieved by destroyer ROCKINGHAM and corvettes ARROWHEAD, BUCTOUCHE, COBALT, MOOSE JAW, NASTURTIUM, PICTOU, and WINDFLOWER. Destroyer ROCKINGHAM was detached on the 20th. The remainder of the escorts were detached on the 25th when the convoy was dispersed.

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Convoy SC.54 departed St Johns escorted by destroyer BURNHAM and corvettes ALGOMA, CHAMBLY, MATAPEDIA, and NAPANEE.

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Canadian troop convoy TC 15 departed Halifax with liners ANDES (25,689grt), CHRISTIAAN HUYGENS (16,287grt), DUCHESS OF ATHOLL (20,119grt), DURBAN CASTLE (17,388grt), ORCADES (23,456grt), ORONSAY (20,043grt), REINA DEL PACIFICO (17,702grt), SOBIESKI (11,030grt), and WARWICK CASTLE (20,107grt).

 

The convoy was escorted by US battleship NEW MEXICO, light cruisers PHILADELPHIA and SAVANNAH, and destroyers MORRIS, SIMS, HUGHES, MUSTIN, RUSSELL, WALKE, and O'BRIEN on the 13th.

 

On the 18th, destroyers HIGHLANDER (S. O. ), HARVESTER, HAVELOCK, HESPERUS, WESTCOTT, and BLANKNEY, which had been escorting convoy CT 6, joined the convoy and escorted it to arrival on the 21st.

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Dutch steamer JOMA (372grt) was sunk by a mine in Falmouth Harbour.

 

Three gunners were lost on the steamer.

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U.126 sank British steamer PERU (6961grt) at 1-30N, 13-20W.

 

The entire crew were rescued by British whaling tanker UNIWALECO (9755grt) and taken to Freetown.

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Soviet destroyer SUROVY was lost in a mining off Hango.

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Operation APPROACH, carrying stores to Tobruk, began when destroyers KIPLING, JACKAL, and ENCOUNTER departed Alexandria on the first serial. Polish General Sikorski took passage in destroyer KIPLING to inspect Polish troops at Tobruk.

 

The ships returned to Alexandria on the 14th.

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Destroyer ERIDGE and sloop FLAMINGO passed through the Suez Canal northbound.

 

Sloop FLAMINGO departed Port Said for Alexandria, arriving on the 14th.

 

Destroyer ERIDGE was held at Port Said to take part in an anti-submarine sweep the next day.

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Greek auxiliary ship AGHIOS NICOLAOS was sunk on a mine between Dikili and Mitylene.

 

The Master and crew of three were all lost.

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Anti-submarine trawlers ST NECTAN and LADY SHIRLEY departed Gibraltar escorting tanker COWRIE westwards and then joined tanker WINAMAC for Gibraltar, arriving on the 21st.

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Submarine REGENT arrived at Malta from Alexandria with passengers, stores, and kerosene.

 

On the 12th, her starboard engine broke down completely and she arrived at Malta with only her port engine operating.

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Australian troop convoy US 13 departed Fremantle with liners QUEEN ELIZABETH (83,673grt) and QUEEN MARY (81,235grt).

 

The convoy was dispersed on the 20th. The liners then travelled independently.

 

 

Friday, 14 November

 

Light cruiser EDINBURGH and heavy cruiser SUFFOLK departed Hvalfjord for Denmark Strait patrol.

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Destroyer ESCAPADE departed Scapa Flow at 2015 for Hvalfjord to join the force under the Commander in Chief, Home Fleet.

 

The destroyer embarked mail for the fleet before sailing.

 

Destroyer ESCAPADE arrived at Hvalfjord at 1000/16th.

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Submarine P.35 departed patrol off Norway for Dundee.

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Minesweeper FITZROY departed the Faroes to boiler clean at Aberdeen.

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U.561 sank Panamanian steamer CRUSADER (2939grt), straggling behind convoy SC.53, in the North Atlantic.

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T/A/Sub Lt (A) P. R. Cassels RNVR, was killed when his Hurricane of 759/760 Squadron crashed in Dawlish Bay.

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Soviet destroyer GORDY was sunk on a mine off Naissaari in the Baltic.

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Minelaying cruiser ABDIEL and destroyers HERO, HOTSPUR, and NIZAM departed Alexandria for Tobruk in the second series of Operation APPROACH.

 

The ships arrived back at Alexandria on the 15th. General Sikorski returned to Alexandria on cruiser ABDIEL.

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Destroyer ERIDGE departed Port Said and joined destroyers NAPIER, KANDAHAR, and HASTY in an anti-submarine sweep.

 

After an unsuccessful search, the destroyers returned to Alexandria on the 16th.

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Anti-aircraft ship CARLISLE, destroyer AVONVALE, and Australian sloops PARRAMATTA and YARRA passed through the Suez Canal and sailed for Alexandria.

 

Destroyer AVONVALE was recalled to escort landing ship GLENGYLE the following day.

 

Destroyer HEYTHROP passed through the Suez Canal on the 15th and on arrival at Port Said departed with destroyer AVONVALE escorting landing ship GLENGYLE to Alexandria.

 

Destroyer HEYTHROP arrived from Gibraltar, via the Cape.

 

The anti-aircraft ships and the sloops arrived at Alexandria on the 15th.

 

The landing ship and destroyers AVONVALE and HEYTHROP arrived at Alexandria on the 16th.

 

Destroyer HEYTHROP joined the 2nd Destroyer Flotilla for duty in the Mediterranean Fleet.

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Submarines TORBAY and TALISMAN, which had departed Alexandria on the 10th, landed commandoes on the North African coast to strike at Rommel's Headquarters near Apollonia.

 

The submarines arrived back at Alexandria on the 23rd.

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British steamer EMPIRE PELICAN (6463grt), en route to Malta, was sunk by Italian bombing ten miles southwest of Galita Island.

 

One crewman was lost. Thirty five crewmen and nine gunners were made prisoners of war.

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Ocean boarding vessel MARSDALE departed Gibraltar on Western Patrol.

 
 

on to Naval Events, NOVEMBER 1941, Part 2
or back to RN Day-by-Day Homepage

revised 8/4/12
further editing is required