Background Events - November 1942-January 1943
French North Africa ('Torch'), Final battles for
Guadalcanal & Stalingrad, 'Cockleshell
heroes', Battle of Barents Sea
P.311 (Cdr R D Cayley DSO),
carrying Chariots 10 and
18 for Operation PRINCIPAL departed
Malta on 28 December
for Maddalena. She was probably mined in the Straits of Bonifacio, but there
is also the possibility she was sunk by Italian torpedo boat PARTENOPE on the
29th. Cdr Cayley, Lt R H S Silver, Lt C Buckley RNVR, Ty/Sub Lt I N Macrae
RNR, Lt (E) J H
Gordon, the fifty six ratings of the crew, Lt C E Bonnell DSC RCNVR, Ty/Lt G
Stretton-Smith RNVR, Ty/Act/Lt J Sargent RNVR, Ty/Sub Lt G G Goss RNVR, 2nd
Lt J Kerr Highland Light Infantry and five ratings of the Chariot personnel
Sunday, 3 January
In Operation PRINCIPAL, submarines TROOPER (with Chariots 16, 19, and
23) and THUNDERBOLT (with 15 and 22) launched all five Chariots against
Palermo. They then
withdrew, leaving submarine P.46 to pick up the crews. The fates of the
(Sub Lt R G Dove
RNVR and Leading Seaman J Freel) mined liner VIMINALE (8500grt) which was
Chariot 19 (Ty/Lt H F Cook
RNVR and Able Seaman Worthy). Lt Cook was drowned when his suit was torn getting
through the boom defense nets, but AB Worthy drove the Chariot ashore and
blew it up prior to being captured.
Chariot 23 (Sub Lt H L H
Stevens RNVR and Leading Seaman Carter) had to abandon the attack due to
mechanical failure and her crew was picked up by P.46.
Chariot 15 (Ty/Petty Officer
J M Miln and Able Seaman W Simpson) was lost with due to unknown causes prior
to entering harbour. AB Simpson was lost, but PO Miln survived.
Chariot 22 (Lt R T G
Greenland RNVR and Leading Signalman A Ferrier), was able to mine new light
cruiser ULPIO TRAIANO, which was sunk. Mines were also fixed to destroyer
GRECALE and corvettes CICLONE and GAMMA, but were removed before exploding.
The crews of Chariot 16 and 22 were also captured.
Thursday, 7 January
Anti-submarine trawler JURA (545
tons, Ty/Lt E Havercroft
RNR) was sunk by
U.371 in the
Western Mediterranean. Ty/Sub Lt R S
Carter RNVR was killed, and Lt Havercroft, Ty/Sub Lt J Crawshaw RNVR and
fourteen ratings were missing.
Anti-submarine trawler HORATIO
(545 tons, Ty/Lt C A Lemkey
RNR) was sunk by
German motor torpedo boat S.58 in the Western Mediterranean off the Algerian
Tuesday, 12 January
Anti-submarine trawler KINGSTON
JACINTH (356 tons, Skipper R W Denny
RNR) was mined off
Friday, 15 January
Destroyer ROXBOROUGH (Lt Cdr A C Price), escorting convoy HX 222, was
badly damaged by heavy seas that stove in her bridge. Cdr Price was killed in
his sea cabin, and the first lieutenant, Lt G Osborne RNVR, died of his injuries
ten hours later. One rating was missing.
Lt G M Greenwood RCNVR, who had been aft, was able to regain control
of the ship, which was proceeded to
St Johns, NF. She was later
Charlestown, SC and returned to
duty on 15 April.
A further Chariot attempt, Operation WELCOME, was made against
Tripoli on the night of
the 18th/19th from THUNDERBOLT. Two
Chariots were launched, but Chariot 12
developed defects soon after launching and landed at about 0330 west of
Tripoli where it was destroyed by her crew,
Lt G Larkin RNVR and PO Berey.
Chariot 13 was also lost, after
entering the harbour, and her crew of Sub Lt H L H Stevens RNVR and CERA S
Buxton were taken prisoner.
Sunday, 31 January
Corvette SAMPHIRE (Lt Cdr
F T Renny DSC, RD
RNR) was sunk by Italian
submarine PLATINO in the
Western Mediterranean in 37-07N, 5-32E.
Cdr Renny, Ty/Sub Lt G C Abbott RNVR, Ty/Lt R J Murray RNVR and forty two
ratings were missing.
Background Events - February-May 1943
Battles for Tunis & North Africa, Battle of
Atlantic peaks, U-boats withdraw, 'Dambusters'
minelayer WELSHMAN (Captain W H D
Friedberger DSC), on passage from Malta to Alexandria, was sunk by
Crete in 32-12N, 24-52E.
Destroyers BELVOIR and TETCOTT were dispatched to assist, but she sank before
a tow could be passed. Cdr F J C Allen (ret), Sub Lt P B Edwards, Ty/Lt (E) A
Mackenzie, Paymaster Lt B K Freedman, Ty/Gunner (T) L F G Cook, Ty/Lt J C
Cherry RNVR, Ty/Lt E E Davis RNVR, Ty/Surgeon Lt J B Houghton MRCS, LRCP
RNVR, Ty/Paymaster Lt B W Holman RNVR and one hundred and forty three ratings
Friday, 5 February
Naval trawler STRONSAY
(Ty/Lt A F W Boumphrey RNVR) was sunk on a mine in the
Mediterranean. There were no casualties.
Saturday, 6 February
(Lt Cdr W F Campbell RCNVR) was sunk by Italian
Oran. Cdr Campbell, Lt
E Wilson, thirty five Canadian ratings and five RN were lost. Three officers
and 47 ratings were rescued by destroyer LOOKOUT.
Sunday, 7 February
Minesweeping trawler TERVANI
(409 tons, Act/Skipper F G Blockwell
RNR) was sunk by
Italian submarine ACCIAIO off Algeria. Skipper
Blockwell, Ty/Skipper J H Noble RNR and twenty
ratings were missing.
Monday, 8 February
Anti-submarine trawler BREDON
(750 tons, Ty/Lt J R Fradgley RNVR) was sunk by a German submarine in the
North Atlantic. Lt Fradgley,
Ty/Sub Lt P J Good RNVR, Ty/Sub Lt F P W Neve RNVR and forty ratings were
Tuesday, 9 February
Corvette ERICA (Ty/Lt A C
RNR) was sunk on a mine off
Benghazi. A number of
ratings were lost. All the officers and 71 ratings were rescued by
anti-submarine whaler SOUTHERN MAID.
Monday, 22 February
Canadian corvette WEYBURN (Lt
Cdr T M Golby RCNR) was sunk on a mine, four miles east of
Cape Spartel in 35-46N, 6-02W,
her depth charges exploding as she sank. Cdr Golby, Ty/Sub Lt W Bark RCNVR,
six Canadian ratings and one RN were lost. Destroyer WIVERN alongside was badly damaged by the explosion of
the depth charges. However, she picked up 27 survivors, while 41 more plus 15
of her own wounded were rescued by sloop BLACK SWAN. WIVERN was taken in tow
by BLACK SWAN, and required seventeen months to repair.
Wednesday, 24 February
Submarine VANDAL (Lt J S
Bridger) was lost in an accident in the Firth of Clyde. Lt Bridger, Lt J M B
Portman, Ty/Lt M V Ebel GM RNVR, Ty/Sub Lt J H Hickley RNVR and the entire
crew of thirty three ratings were lost.
Norwegian submarine UREDD
was lost about this time. Sub Lt E Conde RNVR and two communications ratings
were lost with the Norwegian crew.
Saturday, 27 February
(Lt Cdr G R Colvin) was sunk by German anti-submarine
vessel UJ.2210 south of
Naples. Cdr Colvin, Sub
Lt T R Crawley-Boevey, Lt R M P Eaton, Lt (E) G S Nicholson RNR, Lt A R Sabbe -
St Leger, Lt R G Sampson DSC and fifty seven ratings were lost.
German S.65, S.68, S.81 and S.85 of the 5th Motor Torpedo Boat
Flotilla attacked convoy WP.300 in
Lyme Bay. Steamer
LCT.381, and trawlers
LORD HAILSHAM (Ty/Lt P H G Clark RNVR) were sunk. LORD HAILSHAM
lost nine ratings killed and nine missing.
HARVESTER damaged U.444 by depth charges and ramming in the North Atlantic in 51-38N,
29-18W, but in the ramming, her port engine was put out of action. French
corvette ACONIT joined and finished off the submarine at 0135. Four German
survivors were picked up by ACONIT and one by
HARVESTER (Cdr A A Tait DSO), which was then sunk by U.432 at
midday in 51-23N, 28-40W. ACONIT again returned to the
scene, sank U.432 and rescued several survivors from the destroyer. One
rating was killed, and Cdr Tait, Ty/Surgeon Lt W R B Dickinson RNVR, Lt W G
Edwards, Ty/Lt A Johnson RNVR, Ty/Act/Gunner (T) G H Padgham, Cdr C G
Thompson OBE, Ty/Sub Lt R H Thorne RNVR, Ty/Midshipman G P Tulitt
RNR, Lt T S Winton
RNVR and one hundred and thirty five ratings were missing.
Friday, 12 March
Light cruisers AURORA, SIRIUS with destroyers LIGHTNING and LOYAL
were operating off
LIGHTNING (Cdr H G Walters DSC) was
sunk by German motor torpedo boat S.55 north of Bizerte in 37-53N, 9-50E.
Four ratings were killed, one died of wounds, and Ty/Sub Lt D W Callow
RNZNVR, Lt J P S Cundell and eighteen ratings were missing. Eight ratings were wounded, and
LOYAL rescued 170 survivors.
Sunday, 14 March
Submarine THUNDERBOLT (Lt
C B Crouch DSO) was sunk by Italian corvette CICOGNA off
Cape Milazzo, Sicily. Lt Crouch, Lt G
P Horlick, Lt R P Webb, Lt J Edgar, Lt E P Maw RNVR, Lt (E) D A M Woodcock
and fifty six ratings were lost.
Minesweeping trawler MORAVIA
(Ty/Skipper Lt H R Pook
RNR) was sunk on a
mine in the
Tuesday, 23 March
Submarine TURBULENT (Cdr J
W Linton DSO, DSC) was declared lost after failing to return after a patrol
Sardinia. It is not known how she was lost, but most probably
mined after 14 March off eastern
Corsica. Cdr Linton, Lt A
O Baker, Lt J P Blake DSC, Lt (E) C F E Chartres, Lt B C W Clements DSC, Sub
Lt J M Lawson and sixty one ratings were lost. Linton was awarded the Victoria Cross on
25 May 1943.
Saturday, 27 March
Escort aircraft carrier DASHER
(Captain L A K Boswell DSO) was sunk by a petrol explosion five miles south
Cumbrae Island. Lt Cdr P H
Havers, Lt R C B Stallard-Renoyre of 826 Squadron, Sub Lt O T Johnston,
Schoolmaster J N Cuthbert, MA, Lt K W Davies RNR, Ty/Lt F E Price
RNR, Ty/Lt Cdr (E) J
RNR, Ty/Act/Lt Cdr (E) W L Allan
RNR, Ty/Sub Lt (E) T J A Moore
RNR, Ty/Paymaster Sub
Lt N L P Monks
RNR, Ty/Lt J Hughes RNVR,
Ty/Act/Lt J S Wrathall RNVR, Ty/Lt (A) A D Richardson NZRNVR of 891 Squadron,
Ty/Sub Lt (A) J R Walker RNVR, of 826 Squadron, Ty/Sub Lt (A) M J Banister
RNVR of 837 Squadron, Ty/Sub Lt W K Lockwood RNVR of 837 Squadron, Ty/Sub Lt
(A) R Paden RNVR of 826 Squadron, Ty/Lt (E) A H Lincoln RNVR, Ty/Sub Lt (E) F
E J Barker RNVR, Ty/Sub Lt (E) H A Hough RNVR, Ty/Act/Sub Lt (E) T V Buxton
RNVR, Ty/Act/Sub Lt W P Haughie RNVR, Ty/Act/Sub Lt (E) A Cameron RNVR,
Ty/Act/Sub Lt R Hutchinson RNVR, Ty/Act/Sub Lt W A Swan RNVR, Ty/Act/Sub Lt F
Tetlow RNVR, Ty/Surgeon Lt T P Storey DSC RNVR, Ty/Sub Lt (sp) J R Langley
RNVR and three hundred and fifty ratings were lost in the aircraft carrier.
One hundred and forty nine survivors, including the commanding officer, were
rescued, but burning petrol on the sea hampered rescue efforts.
BEVERLEY (Lt Cdr R A Price),
escorting convoy ON.176, was damaged in a collision with steamer CAIRNRONA in
North Atlantic on the 9th. In this damaged stage, she was sunk
by U.188 in 52-19N, 40-28W. Cdr Price, Lt J Bolster, Lt A MacC Collie RNVR,
Ty/Lt (E) D F Ford, Ty/Lt M G S Harston RNVR, Ty/Surgeon Lt P A Rees RNVR, Lt
D H Revill DSC
RNR, Ty/Sub Lt G L Routledge
RNVR, Act/Gunner (T) E H Stribley and one hundred and thirty nine ratings
were missing in the loss of the ship. Only four crew were rescued.
Tuesday, 13 April
Norwegian destroyer ESKDALE,
escorting convoy PW.323 with destroyer GLAISDALE, was damaged by German motor
torpedo boat S.90 and later sunk by S.112 off the Lizard Head. Twenty five
crew were lost, but 105 rescued.
Wednesday, 14 April
Armed patrol trawler ADONIS
(644 tons, former Norwegian NORDHAV I, later AVALON, Ty/Skipper H Draper
RNR) was sunk off
Lowestoft by German S-boats
of the 4th Motor Torpedo Boat Flotilla. Skipper Draper was killed and
Ty/Skipper C White
Friday, 16 April
Destroyer PAKENHAM (Cdr B
Jones DSC) was badly damaged off
Sicily by gunfire from
Italian torpedo boats CASSIOPEA and CIGNO. Nine ratings were killed, and one
died of wounds. Destroyer PALADIN in company took her in tow, but attacks by
enemy aircraft made the passage unsafe and PALADIN scuttled her.
Sunday, 18 April
Submarine REGENT (Lt W N R
Knox DSC) was sunk, probably on a mine, in the Straits of Otranto. Lt Knox,
Act/Warrant Engineer R B Baker, Lt J W S Culham, Sub Lt R R Fernie, Lt P R J
Gibson, Warrant Engineer E J C Pratt, Ty/Lt R J Sutton RNVR and fifty six
ratings were lost. Three bodies were washed ashore in May.
Submarine P.615 (Lt G W St
C Lambert), escorted by motor minesweeper
MMS.107, was sunk by
U.123 in 6-49N, 13-09W. Lt Lambert, Lt A F Davies, Sub Lt H H Weeks RNR, Ty/Lt D Burnell
RNVR, Ty/Sub Lt D E Nicholl RNVR and the entire crew of thirty eight ratings
Wednesday, 21 April
Submarine SPLENDID (Lt I L
M McGeoch) was sunk by German destroyer HERMES (captured Greek destroyer
VASILEFS GEORGIOS I) SSE of Capri. Eighteen crew members were lost. Twenty seven crew, including Lt
McGeoch, Ty/Lt R G Balkwill RNVR, Lt G G Hardy RNVR and Ty/Lt (E) D W
Laidlaw, were rescued and made prisoners of war.
Saturday, 24 April
Submarine SAHIB (Lt J H
Bromage DSO, DSC) scuttled herself after being damaged by Italian corvettes
GABBIANO, EUTERPE, and CLIMENE off
Cape Milazzo. One rating was
lost. Lt Bromage, Ty/Sub Lt N T O Berry RNR, Lt A N Brookes,
Sub Lt R G Carr, Lt L E Peyton Jones DSO, DSC, Warrant Engineer D J Thomas
DSC and forty one ratings were captured and made prisoners of war.
Sunday, 30 May
UNTAMED (Lt G M Noll) was lost when
she failed to surface during exercises with anti-submarine yacht SHEMARA off
Campbeltown. Lt Noll, Lt J P Duncan, Sub Lt P C G Ackworth, Ty/Sub Lt G T C
Higgins RNVR, Sub Lt P L Clavton and the thirty one ratings of the crew were
lost. She was salved and served as VITALITY.
training in midget submarine X.7 in Loch Striven, Sub Lt D H Locke RNVR was
killed in a diving accident.
Background Events - June-September 1943
Invasion of Sicily ('Husky'), Battle of Kursk, Italy
surrenders, Salerno landings ('Avalanche'),
U-boat packs return to Atlantic, X-craft attack
Friday, 11 June
WALLAROO (Ty/Lt E S Ross, RANR (S))
was sunk in collision with American steamer GILBERT COSTIN off Fremantle. Two
ratings were killed and one missing. She was abandoned after seven hours
following attempts to get her in to port. An American aircraft located the
survivors and directed an Australian warship to the scene.
motor torpedo boats S.39, S.74, S.80, S.94, S.89, S.86, and S.83 of the 2nd
and 6th Motor Torpedo Boat Flotillas carried out a raid in the Harwich area.
Minesweeping trawler RED GAUNTLET
(Lt J N Childs RNVR) was sunk by S.86 near Harwich. One rating was killed, Lt
Childs and nineteen ratings were missing.
Friday, 6 August
Submarine PARTHIAN (Lt C A
RNR) was lost in the South Adriatic, most probably to
mining. She was due to arrive at Beirut on the 11th. Lt
Pardoe, Lt M A Von Bergen, Ty/Sub Lt J F Goodwin RNVR, Ty/Sub Lt J T R Walker
RNVR and sixty one ratings were lost.
Saturday, 14 August
Submarine SARACEN (Lt M G
R Lumby DSO, DSC) was sunk by Italian corvettes MINERVA and EUTERPE off
Bastia, Corsica. One rating was
killed and three missing. MINERVA picked up two officers and 24 ratings,
EUTERPE three officers and 17 ratings. Lt Lumby, Ty/Lt N F Carrington RNVR,
Ty/Act/Warrant Engineer H S Chown, Lt J H W Craven, Act/Sub Lt R C Elliott
RNR and 39 ratings
were rescued and made prisoners of war. Eleven ratings escaped when Italy surrendered in
September before the prisoners were taken over by German troops. Sub Lt
Elliott "died on war service" on
8 May 1944, Stoker W Holt as a prisoner of war, and
Leading Stoker T H Barber was killed in an RAF air raid on
13 September 1943.
Friday, 27 August
Sloop EGRET (Act/Cdr John
V Waterhouse) was sunk by German glider bomb attack 30 miles west of Vigo in
the Bay of Biscay in 42-10N, 9-22W. Ty/Lt C S Cahill RNVR, Ty/Gunner E W
Carter, Warrant Engineer R W Hailes, Ty/Sub Lt P D Harthorn RNVR,
Lt P A S Lane, Lt J B Mason and
one hundred and eighty eight ratings were missing. Capt Godfrey N Brewer
(also on board) and Ty/Sub Lt T B Brotheridge RNVR were wounded. (Correction
with thanks to Ian Macleod)
Canadian destroyer ATHABASKAN in company was badly damaged in another
glider bomb attack with two ratings killed and one rating dying of wounds. Including the latter, there were
fifteen wounded, including Lt Cdr D Lantier and Sub Lt J A Brebner. However,
she still picked up Cdr Farquahar, four officers and thirty ratings from
EGRET. ATHABASKAN was met by escort destroyers GOATHLAND, LIMBOURNE and
TANATSIDE off the
Scilly Islands, arrived at Devonport on the
30th, and repairs were completed there on 6 December.
PUCKERIDGE (Lt J C Cartwright
DSC), en route from
Gibraltar to Oran, was sunk by
U.617 40 miles east of Europa Point. Sixty two ratings were lost. Nine officers and 120 ratings were
Friday, 10 September
OCCUPATION OF TARANTO, OPERATION
Minelaying cruiser ABDIEL
(Captain D Orr Ewing), carrying 400 troops, and which had departed
Bizerte on the 8th with
US light cruiser
BOISE, was sunk when
she struck a contact mine at Taranto in 40-29N,
17-15E. Ty/Act/Lt Cdr (E) A H Brown, Act/Paymaster Lt Cdr R H Alington,
Paymaster Sub Lt M Booth, Ty/Gunner (T) J G Barnacle DSC, Ty/Surgeon Lt N A
Terwillegar MD RCNVR, Lt D M Dent RNVR, Ty/Sub Lt A J Plant RNVR, forty one
ratings, and one hundred and one troops of the 6th Parachute Battalion were
lost. Six ratings and 120 troops were wounded.
In fighting at
Salerno following the
landings on the 9th, Act/Ty/Captain R M Stott RM, Ty/Lt T S Hawkard RM and
Ty/Lt D C Lloyd RM of 41 Commando Royal Marines, were lost.
Saturday, 11 September
MIDGET SUBMARINE ATTACK ON
GERMAN SHIPS IN NORWAY, OPERATION SOURCE
Submarines THRASHER (Lt A R Hezlet DSC) towed X.5 (Lt H Henty-Creer),
TRUCULENT (Lt R L Alexander DSO) towed X.6 (Lt D Cameron
RNR), STUBBORN (Lt A
A Duff) towed X.7 (Lt B C G Place DSC), SEA NYMPH (Lt J P H
Oakley DSC) towed X.8 (Lt B M McFarlane, RAN), SYRTIS (Lt M H Jupp DSC) towed
X.9 (Lt T L Martin) and SCEPTRE (Lt I S McIntosh MBE, DSC) towed X.10 (Lt K R
Operation SOURCE was the attack on capital German warships in
Norway. The operation was split into three plans –
(1) operation FUNNEL, attack on the target in Altenfjord, (2) Operation
EMPIRE, attack on the Narvik area, and (3) Operation FORCED, attack on the
Trondheim area, so the
attack could be directed against the enemy in whichever area he might be
The submarines for Operation FUNNEL departed Loch Cairnbawn on the
11th, less SCEPTRE, which with the shortest trip left at 1300/12th. X.5, X.6
and X.7 were to attack battleship TIRPITZ, X.8 heavy cruiser LUTZOW, and X.9
and X.10 battlecruiser SCHARNHORST.
commanding officer Sub Lt E Kearon RNVR) was lost en route on the 16th with
Sub Lt Kearon, Ordinary Seaman A H Harte and Stoker G H Hollett in the vessel
X.8 was scuttled en
route on the 18th, following damage caused when she jettisoned her explosive
charges to correct trim. The passage crew was taken aboard her towing
This only left X.5, X.6, X.7 and X.10 to launch their attacks on the
X.5 was sunk before
reaching TIRPITZ. Lt H Hentry-Creer RNVR, Sub Lt A D Malcolm RNVR, Sub Lt T J
Nelson RNVR and ERA R J Mortiboys were lost.
X.7 were able to mine TIRPITZ, but
were lost shortly after. X.6's crew of four, Sub Lt D Cameron, Sub Lt J T
Lorimer RNVR Sub Lt R H Kendall RNVR,and ERA4 E Goddard was made prisoners
and taken aboard TIRPITZ. X.7's crew of Lt B C G Place DSC and Sub Lt R
Aitken RNVR were also made prisoners and taken aboard TIRPITZ, but Sub Lt L B
Whittam RNVR and ERA4 W M Whitley were lost.
X.10 returned safely to submarine STUBBORN having been unable to
locate SCHARNHORST, then at sea exercising. The crew, Lt K R Hudspeth RANVR,
Ty/Act/Sub Lt G G Harding RNVR, Ty/Sub Lt B E Enzer RNVR and ERA4 L R Tilley
turned her over to the passage crew, but X.10
was scuttled in heavy weather on 3 October.
Monday, 20 September
ASSAULT ON THE ESCORTS,
Frigate LAGAN, escorting
convoy ON.202, was torpedoed by U.260 in 57-09N, 27-28W using the new Gnat acoustic
torpedoes. She was towed back to the
UK by tug DESTINY,
arriving on the 24th, but declared a constructive total loss.
CROIX (Lt Cdr A H Dobson RCNR), escorting ON.202, was
torpedoed by U.305 in 57-30N, 31-10W, and an hour later, torpedoed a second
time by U.305 and sunk. The commanding officer, four officers and and 76
ratings were rescued by frigate ITCHEN, but when she was sunk, only one
rating was saved from the crew of
ST CROIX. In total, ST
CROIX lost Cdr Dobson, Lt R T N Porter, Act/Ty/Lt Cdr P F M De Freitas RCNR,
Lt P S Major RCNVR, Ty/Lt C A Ross RCNVR, Ty/Lt J F Gallagher RCNVR, Ty/Lt G
B Wright RCNVR, Ty/Sub Lt W L Page RCNVR, Surgeon Lt W L M King RCNVR, Ty/Lt
(E) D Ridge RCNVR and one hundred and thirty seven ratings.
Corvette POLYANTHUS (Ty/Lt
J G Aitken
RNR), also escorting ON 202, was
ordered to join ITCHEN searching for the submarine responsible for sinking ST
CROIX and also to rescue survivors. She never reached ITCHEN, and was sunk by
U.952 in 57-00N, 31-10W. Lt Aitken, Ty/Act/Sub Lt P J Atkins RNVR, Ty/Lt H
RNR, Ty/Lt J R Harridge RNVR,
Ty/Act/Sub Lt G M Ponman RNVR, Ty/Lt G H Shepard RNVR, Ty/Lt H Whitehead RNVR
and seventy eight ratings were missing. The only survivor, Sub Lt F J
Young RNVR, was rescued by ITCHEN.
Wednesday, 22 September
ASSAULT ON THE ESCORTS,
AND ON.202 (continued)
Frigate ITCHEN (Act/Cdr C
E Bridgman DSO
RNR), escorting ON.202,was sunk
by U.666 in 53-25N, 39-42W. Cdr Bridgman, Ty/Lt C T A S Archbold RCNVR, Ty/Surgeon
Lt P H Colver RNVR, Ty/Lt F K Cook RNVR, Sub Lt E A Griffin RNR, Ty/Lt W A
Johnston RCNVR, Ty/Warrant Engineer E T A Jolliffe DSM, Ty/Act/Sub Lt L F
McSwine RNVR, Ty/Sub Lt D S Manning RNVR, Lt S Peoples RNR, Ty/Act/Sub Lt T
M Radcliffe RNVR, Ty/Sub Lt W T L Rylance RNVR, Ty/Sub Lt A D R White RNVR,
Ty/Act/Sub Lt F J Young RNVR and one hundred and thirty six ratings were
missing from ITCHEN. The only
survivors from all three ships were one from ITCHEN, and Stoker W Fisher from
ST CROIX and Sub Lt Young from POLYANTHUS, both picked up by
American steamer JAMES SMITH (7181grt).
Armed patrol drifter OCEAN
RETRIEVER (Act/Chief Skipper W A Capps DSC
RNR) was sunk on a
mine in the Thames Estuary. Skipper Capps and ten ratings were lost.
Saturday, 25 September
German S-boats of the 2nd, 4th, 6th and 8th Motor Torpedo Boat
Flotillas laid 120 mines off Harwich and Ordforness in Operation PROBESTUCK.
During the operation, minesweeping trawler
FRANC TIREUR (Act/Ty/Lt Cdr L R Greenwood RNVR) was sunk by S.96
off Harwich. Ty/Lt W H Boyd RNVR and fourteen ratings were missing. Off the Sunk Light Vessel, S.96 was
rammed by ML.150 and ML.145 and abandoned, two German officers and eleven
ratings being picked up by ML.145 and made prisoners. Three MLs were damaged
in the engagement, and ML.145 and ML.150 returned to port with one officer
and one rating wounded.
Patrol sloop PUFFIN and destroyer PYTCHLEY engaged other German motor
torpedo boats and claimed to have hit two of them. Minesweeping trawler
STELLA RIGEL rammed and sank trawler DONNA NOOK during another engagement
with the Germans, but the entire crew was rescued.
Sunday, 26 September
BRITISH AEGEAN CAMPAIGN
Destroyer INTREPID (Cdr C
W Kitcat) was sunk by German bombing at Port Laki, Leros.
Midshipman J D B Deedes, Midshipman D Le M Granet and three ratings were
killed, Gunner (T) C E Creasy and one rating died of wounds, and eight
ratings were missing. Cdr Kitcat was wounded. Greek destroyer QUEEN OLGA (Lt Cdr G Blessas DSO RHN)
was sunk in the same attack. Six officers and sixty four ratings were killed.
Motor launches ML.356, ML.836 and ML.354 rescued survivors from both ships.
Background Events - October-December 1943
Aegean campaign, Battle for Italy, Battles for
New Guinea & Solomons, US landings on Tarawa,
'Scharnhorst' sunk in Battle of North Cape, Burma
Sunday, 3 October
USURPER (Lt D R O Mott DSC) was
lost in the northern part of the Gulf of Genoa, probably by
mining after this date. She failed to arrive at Algiers on the 12th. Lt
Mott, Ty/Act/Sub Lt J D S Anderson RNVR, Sub Lt P A S Frost, Act/Lt S L
Jordon, Lt J H Worth and forty one ratings were lost.
Minesweeping trawler MEROR
(Ty/Skipper H J May
RNR) was sunk by a
mine in the
Friday, 8 October
Polish destroyer ORKAN,
escorting convoy SC.143, was sunk by U.378 in 56-30N, 26-26W
9 October, Saturday
Destroyer PANTHER (Lt Cdr,
the Viscount Jocelyn) was sunk by German air attack in
Scarpanto Strait. Lt Cdr (E) K H
Bloomer, Ty/Gunner (T) H W Jones, Ty/Lt A V Stubbs RNVR and thirty three
ratings were missing.
Sunday, 17 October
Submarine TROOPER (Lt J S Wraith
DSO, DSC) was lost on patrol east of Leros, probably to mining. She had
Beirut on 26 September
and was due back on this date. Lt Wraith, Lt A W Anderson, Lt L A S Grant, Lt
(E) O F Lancaster DSC, Ty/Sub Lt H G Sumner RNVR, Ty/Sub Lt J S Ryder, RANVR
and fifty seven ratings were lost.
Thursday, 21 October
Canadian minesweeper CHEDABUCTO
(Ty/Lt J H B Davies RCNR) was sunk in a collision with cable ship LORD KELVIN
near St Simeon in the
St Lawrence River. Lt (E) D W Tuke
RCNVR was lost. The rest of the crew of 71 were saved uninjured.
Friday, 22 October
BRITISH AEGEAN CAMPAIGN
Escort destroyer HURWORTH was carrying out a diversion with Greek
sister ship ADRIAS off the east coast of Kaymnos, while destroyers JERVIS and
PATHFINDER landed supplies and personnel at Leros.
ADRIAS was mined, her
forecastle blown off, and she was beached at Gumushuk on the Turkish coast in
37-02N, 27-06E. Twenty one of her crew killed and 21 wounded. On 1 December,
she was able to proceed on her own power to Castelorizo, arriving on the 3rd,
and from there, proceeded under her own power, accompanied by tug BRIGAND and
escorted by destroyers JERVIS and PENN. Arriving at
Alexandria on the 6th, was
declared a constructive total loss and not repaired.
Still on the 22 October, destroyer
HURWORTH (Cdr R H Wright DSC, D.22), going to the assistance of
ADRIAS, was sunk on a mine east of Kaymnos,
Dodecanese in 36-59N,
27-06E. Lt R A Morgan, Gunner V H Threadkell, Lt A R G Pearce RNVR, Ty/Lt L F
Scholfield RNVR, Ty/Sub Lt E A Stocks RNVR, Ty/Surgeon Lt R McF Kirkpatrick
RNVR and a number of ratings were lost. Eighty five survivors, including Cdr Wright, were rescued and taken to
Saturday, 23 October
Light cruiser CHARYBDIS with destroyers GRENVILLE, ROCKET, LIMBOURNE,
WENSLEYDALE, TALYBONT and STEVENSON, departed
Plymouth on the 22nd to
intercept blockade runner MUNSTERLAND in the Bay of Biscay. Early on the
23rd, they were engaged by a force of German torpedo boats T.23, T.22, T.25,
T.26, and T.27 of the 4th Torpedo Boat Flotilla.
Cruiser CHARYBDIS (Captain
G A W Voelcker) was sunk T.23 and T.27. Captain Voelcker, Ty/Act/Lt Cdr C G
Gwynn RNVR, Cdr (E) J D Hamilton, Ty/Chaplain Reverend W H Mitchell RNVR,
Ty/Paymaster Sub Lt L G Turner RNVR, fifty three ratings, and six Marines
were killed, and Ty/Lt F B Bennett RNVR, Lt J C Carver, Act/Surgeon Lt Cdr H
de L N Davis RNVR, Paymaster Cdr A C Dickson, Lt P F Duke, Ty/Act/Warrant
Electrician S J K G Elliott, Ty/Sub Lt S E Fisher RNVR, Lt (E) G L Giles,
Gunner A J Hollingdale, Surgeon Cdr H de B Kempthorne, Ty/Sub Lt J M
Leventhorpe, Lt (E) I D Leverett, Ty/Act/Paymaster Sub Lt J W Little RNVR,
Act/Warrant Mechanic T Livesey, Schoolmaster F H Lowndes DSC, Lt O A Moseley
RNR, Ty/Paymaster Lt
P E Oates RNVR, Ty/Act/Sub Lt J A Owen RNVR, Lt (E) P G Pedrick, Lt (E) J M
Phillips, Ty/Act/Sub Lt J Pounds RNVR, Warrant Shipwright H J Rees, Gunner W
T R Wilden, Ty/Act/Gunner (T) M J Williams, three hundred and thirty seven
ratings, and thirty five Marines missing. Four officers and 103 ratings were rescued.
(Act/Cdr W J Phipps OBE) was badly damaged by T.22, and after an unsuccessful
attempt to tow, was scuttled by TALYBONT. Three ratings died of wounds, and
Surgeon Lt R F Barlow and thirty eight ratings were missing. Cdr Phipps, Ty/Lt P L Berridge RNVR,
Lt D V B Unwin and Ty/Lt J H Wilton RNVR were wounded, and 11 officers and 92
Sunday, 24 October
BRITISH AEGEAN CAMPAIGN
Destroyer ECLIPSE (Cdr E
Mack DSC) was sunk on a mine in the
Aegean in 37-02N,
27-08E. Four ratings were killed, and Commodore (D) P Todd CBE, DSO, Commodore,
Levant Destroyer Flotillas, Py/Ty/Surgeon Lt P S Cuthberton RNVR,
Commissioned Engineer J W Heavyside DSC, Ty/Lt D B Symons RCNVR, Ty/Act/Sub
Lt A C Towers RNVR, one hundred and nine ratings, eight Army officers and one
hundred thirty four other ranks were missing. Cdr Mack and Lt R Durnford were
wounded. Destroyer PETARD picked up three officers, including Mack, 29 ratings
and about ten soldiers, while ML.337, another motor launch and an RAF rescue
launch three more officers, thirty nine ratings, two Army officers and twenty
Monday, 25 October
Minesweeping trawler WILLIAM
STEPHEN (Ty/Skipper S Salenius
RNR) was sunk by
German motor torpedo boat S.74 off Cromer. In return, motor gunboats MGB.607
and MGB.603 sank S.63 and S.88.
BRITISH AEGEAN CAMPAIGN
DULVERTON (Cdr S A Buss MVO, D.5) was
sunk by German bombing off Kos. Cdr Buss, Sub Lt
M H Agnew, Ty/Surgeon Lt A D Bone DSC, MB, BS, MMRCS, LRCP RNVR and seventy
five ratings were lost. Six officers and 103 men were rescued by destroyers
Friday, 19 November
Destroyer QUILLIAM was damaged by shore gunfire. Paymaster Lt R H
Sharps was killed.
Submarine SIMOON (Lt G D N
Milner) was sunk in the Dardanelles Approach, probably on a mine. Lt Milner,
Lt B M Garbett, Warrant Engineer L F C Balson, Ty/Sub Lt C M Cross RNVR,
Ty/Sub Lt L F Jones RNVR, Ty/Sub Lt T S Shanks RNVR and the entire crew of
forty two ratings were lost.
Monday, 22 November
Minesweeper HEBE (Lt A L
Gulvin) was sunk on a mine off
Bari. Three ratings
died of wounds, and Ty/Sub Lt J Hendrie RNVR and thirty three ratings were
missing. Seventy two crew were rescued, half of them wounded.
Wednesday, 8 December
Naval trawler RYSA (Ty/Act/Lt Cdr J H Cooper RNVR)
was sunk on a mine off Maddalena. Ty/Lt W H Bailey RNVR and three ratings
were killed, and Cdr Cooper and fourteen ratings missing. Ty/Sub Lt W G P
Brown RNVR was wounded.
Sunday, 12 December
HUNT FOR U.593
Escort destroyer TYNEDALE
(Lt Cdr J J S Yorke DSC), escorting convoy KMS.34,was sunk by U.593 in 37-10N,
6-05E. Ty/Sub Lt J M Butler RNVR was killed, one rating died of wounds, and
Sub Lt D Binney, Ty/Lt J W Congreve RNVR, Lt A S Corbould, Ty/Lt (E) H J
Haygarth, Ty/Surgeon Lt P G Jeffries RNVR, Ty/Sub Lt S R Sothcott RNVR and
sixty five ratings were missing. The
survivors were rescued by corvette
HYDERABAD and rescue tug
During a long hunt for U.593, escort destroyer
HOLCOMBE (Lt F M Graves), escorting convoy KMS 34, was also sunk off
Bougie in 37-20N, 05-30E by the U-boat. Warrant Engineer H Maunder and ten
ratings died of wounds, Lt K H West, Ty/Sub Lt E A Palmer RNVR and seventy
one ratings were missing. There
were 80 survivors, including Lt Graves, Ty/Surgeon Lt J G Bulstrode RNVR,
Ty/Act/Gunner J Burnett, Lt T Cumming, Ty/Sub Lt M T Holmes RNVR, Ty/Sub Lt J
G Struthers RNVR who were wounded, and one officer who was not.
Saturday, 18 December
French submarine PROTÉE was lost off
Toulon. Sub Lt (Sp) A N
DeWael RNVR and two communications ratings were lost with the French crew.
Saturday, 25 December
Anti-submarine trawler KINGSTON
BERYL (Ty/Sub Lt A W J Baker RNVR) was sunk on a mine north of
Ireland. Sub Lt Baker,
Ty/Sub Lt R B Harris RNVR and twenty six ratings were missing.
Sunday, 26 December
BATTLE OF NORTH CAPE
German battlecruiser SCHARNHORST
was sunk off
North Cape. In the attack, destroyer
SAUMAREZ (Lt Cdr E W Walmsley DSC) was damaged. Sub Lt S J Thorpe and ten
ratings killed. Eleven ratings were wounded.
Friday, 31 December
CLACTON (Act/Lt Cdr L S
RNR) was sunk on a mine off
Corsica. Py/Ty/Surgeon Lt
M C Cross RNVR, Ty/Lt J M Foley RNVR, Ty/Lt H J Paveley RNVR and thirty
ratings were missing. Cdr Shaw was wounded.