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SERVICE HISTORIES of ROYAL NAVY WARSHIPS in WORLD WAR 2

by Lt Cdr Geoffrey B Mason RN (Rtd) (c) 2004

HMS BROKE (D 83) - Shakespeare-class Flotilla Leader including Convoy Escort Movements

HMS Broke (Navy Photos, click to enlarge)

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SHAKESPEARE-Class Flotilla Leader ordered from Thornycroft at Woolston in 1916 at an estimated cost of £275,000 and laid down in October 1918. She was launched as HMS ROOKE on 16th September 1920 and towed to HM Dockyard, Pembroke Dock for completion as an economy measure. On 13th April 1920 the ship was renamed BROKE after the sale to Chile of the WW1 destroyer which was the first RN ship to carry this name. Build was completed on 20th January 1925. She served with the Local Destroyer Flotilla at Devonport in 1933 until the outbreak of war. Following a successful WARSHIP WEEK National Savings campaign in March 1942 this destroyer was adopted by the civil community of Bromley, Kent.

 

B a t t l e   H o n o u r s

 

JUTLAND 1916 - DOVER PATROL 1916-18 - NORTH SEA 1939 - ATLANTIC 1939-42 - ARCTIC 1942 - NORTH AFRICA 1942

 

H e r a l d i c   D a t a

Badge: On a Field White. a right arm proper holding a trident Gold

over a spray of laurel Green

 

M o t t o

Saevum tridentem servamus:  'Let us keep the dread trident'

 

A spotless f'cstle, prewar (Navy Photos)

 

 

D e t a i l s  o f   W a r   S e r v i c e

 

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

 

 

1 9 3 9

 

September             Deployed for convoy defence and patrol in North Sea.

 

October                  Transferred to Western Approaches Command for Atlantic convoy defence and anti-

to                            submarine patrol.

December              (For details of naval activities in Home waters in 1939-40 see ENGAGE THE ENEMY

                                MORE CLOSELY by Corelli Barnett and Naval Staff History).

 

1 9 4 0

 

January                  Atlantic deployment in continuation

                13th        Joined Convoy HG15F in SW Approaches as escort for passage to Liverpool.

                15th        Detaches from HG15F on arrival.

 

February                Atlantic deployment in continuation

                3rd          Escorted Outward Convoy OG17F from assembly point in SW Approaches and detached

                                later same day.

 

March

                11th        Escorted outward Convoy OG21 from assembly point in SW Approaches and detached

                                later same day.

                18th        Escorted outward Convoy OG22 from assembly point in SW Approaches.

                20th        Detached from OG21 and returned to Plymouth.

                31st         Joined inward Convoy HG24F during passage from Gibraltar as escort.

 

April

                3rd          Detached from HG24 on arrival in Liverpool.

                12th        Joined inward Convoy HG25 during passage from Gibraltar as escort.

                15th        Detached from HG25 on arrival in Liverpool.

 

May                        Home waters deployment in continuation.

                                Pennant Number for visual signalling purposes changed to I 83.

 

June                        Transferred to Portsmouth to support evacuation of allied troops and civilians from Bay

                                of Biscay ports

                11th        Embarked demolition party and assisted in evacuation from St. Nazaire.

                                Returned to Portsmouth.

                                (Operation CYCLE - See Naval Staff History , HOLD THE NARROW SEA by P Smith

                                and BEF SHIPS by J de Winser.)

                                Resumed Atlantic convoy defence duties.

 

July                         Joined 6th Escort Group for Atlantic convoy defence.

                                (For details of defence of convoys in 1940 see U-BOAT WAR IN THE ATLANTIC

                                (HMSO) and THE BATTLE OF THE ATLANTIC by D MacIntyre)

 

August                  Atlantic convoy defence with Group in continuation.

to

December

 

1 9 4 1

 

January                  Deployment with Group for Atlantic convoy defence in continuation.

to

March

 

April

                6th          Rescued 180 survivors with HM Destroyer LINCOLN from HM Armed Merchant Cruiser

                                CORMORIN which sank in Atlantic after fire in position 53-34N 21.20W.

                                (Note: ss GLENARTY also took part in the rescue. In all 405 of the 426 on board were

                                saved.) This operation was carried out in extreme weather conditions which made

                                necessary outstanding seamanship to prevent damage to the rescue ships.

                                (See BRITISH DESTROYERS by E. March).

May                        Atlantic convoy defence with Group in continuation.

to

September

 

October                  Part of escort for Convoy ONS29 with Group

                                In collision with HM Destroyer VERITY and sustained major structural damage.

                                Taken in hand for repair and converted for use as Short Range Escort destroyer.

                                (For details of conversion see V AND W DESTROYERS by A Preston).

 

November              Under repair and conversion.

to                            (Work done included

December              Fitting of Radar Type 271 for surface warning and modified RAF radar

                                (Naval Type 286P) with rotating aerial for aircraft warning.

                                (For details of development of radar in RN see RADAR AT SEA by D Howse).

 

1 9 4 2

 

January                  Under repair and refit

to                            Direction finding radio equipment Type FH3 fitted for interception of radio transmissions

March                    was also provided.

                                (For development of new anti-submarine tactics see SEEK AND STRIKE by W Hackman)

April                       On completion of post refit trials worked up for operational service in Atlantic.

 

May                        Deployed in NW Approaches for defence of Atlantic convoys

to

July

 

August

                8th          Despatched to support escort of Convoy SC94 to supplement defence against attacks by

                                STEINBECK Group of U-Boats. (See above references).

                9th          Deployed with Polish destroyer ORP BLYSKAWICA and HM Corvette DIANTHUS to

                                carry out anti-submarine operations against continued heavy and sustained attacks.

                                (For details of the heavy losses see HITLERíS U-BOAT WAR Volume 1 by C Blair.)

 

September             Atlantic convoy defence in continuation.

 

October                  Detached for escort of military convoys for North African landings.

                                (Operation TORCH - See ENGAGE THE ENEMY MORE CLOSELY and Naval Staff

                                History).

                                Nominated for service in Eastern Task Force for support of planned landings.

 

November              Deployed at Gibraltar and prepared for TORCH

                                Nominated with HM Destroyer MALCOLM to prevent any attempt by any Vichy French to

                                destroy harbour installations or to scuttle warships.

                                (Operation TERMINAL - See RELUCTANT ENEMIES by W Tute and Naval Staff

                                History).

                7th          Embarked US troops for passage to Algiers.

                                Detached after dark to enter harbour at Algiers.

                8th          Found harbour entrance at fourth attempt and forced way through boom defences.

                                Came under heavy fire from the shore batteries and although badly damaged was able to

                                land assault party and withdraw.

                                Disabled by return fire and taken in tow by HM Escort Destroyer ZETLAND.

                                Sank in position 36.50N 00.40E after collision with towing ship.

 

 


 

Addendum

 

CONVOY ESCORT MOVEMENTS of HMS BROKE

by Don Kindell

 

These convoy lists have not been cross-checked with the text above

 

 

 

 

 

Date convoy sailed

Joined convoy as escort

Convoy No.

Left convoy

Date convoy arrived

 

 

 

 

 

20/10/39

20/10/39

FS 0024

22/10/39

22/10/39

26/11/39

26/11/39

OA 042

27/11/39

30/11/39

25/11/39

07/12/39

SL 010F

08/12/39

08/12/39

11/12/39

11/12/39

OA 051

13/12/39

14/12/39

22/12/39

22/12/39

OA 058

24/12/39

25/12/39

27/12/39

29/12/39

OA 061

30/12/39

30/12/39

19/12/39

02/01/40

SL 013F

03/01/40

03/01/40

04/01/40

04/01/40

OA 066

06/01/40

08/01/40

09/01/40

09/01/40

AXS 009

10/01/40

10/01/40

13/01/40

13/01/40

HG 015F

15/01/40

22/01/40

16/01/40

16/01/40

OA 073GF

18/01/40

18/01/40

23/01/40

23/01/40

OA 078GF

24/01/40

26/01/40

30/01/40

31/01/40

OA 083GF

03/02/40

03/02/40

03/02/40

03/02/40

OG 017F

03/02/40

09/02/40

29/01/40

04/02/40

HG 017F

06/02/40

07/02/40

08/02/40

08/02/40

OA 088GF

10/02/40

11/02/40

15/02/40

15/02/40

OA 092

16/02/40

18/02/40

07/03/40

09/03/40

OA 105G

11/03/40

11/03/40

11/03/40

11/03/40

OG 021

11/03/40

17/03/40

18/03/40

18/03/40

OG 022

20/03/40

24/03/40

25/03/40

31/03/40

HG 024F

03/04/40

03/04/40

27/03/40

unknown

OA 118

unknown

28/03/40

08/04/40

08/04/40

OA 125G

10/04/40

10/04/40

10/04/40

10/04/40

OG 025

11/04/40

16/04/40

05/04/40

12/04/40

HG 025

15/04/40

15/04/40

03/07/40

05/07/40

OA 178

06/07/40

unknown

29/10/40

29/10/40

OB 236

01/11/40

02/11/40

20/10/40

01/11/40

HX 082

03/11/40

06/11/40

04/11/40

11/11/40

OB 239

14/11/40

14/11/40

27/10/40

14/11/40

SL 053

18/11/40

18/11/40

14/11/40

26/11/40

HX 087

27/11/40

29/11/40

14/11/40

27/11/40

HX 088

28/11/40

30/11/40

08/12/40

08/12/40

OB 256

12/12/40

12/12/40

20/12/40

21/12/40

OB 262

23/12/40

23/12/40

07/12/40

25/12/40

SL 058

28/12/40

28/12/40

20/02/41

06/03/41

HG 054

12/03/41

12/03/41

17/03/41

18/03/41

OG 056

21/03/41

02/04/41

01/03/41

23/03/41

SL 067

26/03/41

26/03/41

02/04/41

03/04/41

OB 305

06/04/41

06/04/41

24/03/41

06/04/41

HG 057

09/04/41

11/04/41

10/06/41

23/06/41

HX 132

28/06/41

28/06/41

10/06/41

23/06/41

SC 034

28/06/41

29/06/41

26/06/41

07/07/41

HX 135

11/07/41

12/07/41

03/07/41

23/07/41

SL 080

29/07/41

29/07/41

04/09/41

22/09/41

SL 086

26/09/41

26/09/41

02/10/41

02/10/41

ON 022

07/10/41

15/10/41

29/09/41

11/10/41

SC 047

15/10/41

20/10/41

22/10/41

23/10/41

ON 029

28/10/41

05/11/41

22/10/41

01/11/41

HX 156

04/11/41

05/11/41

13/11/41

13/11/41

ON 036

18/11/41

25/11/41

10/11/41

22/11/41

SC 054

26/11/41

26/11/41

03/12/41

03/12/41

ON 043

07/12/41

15/12/41

04/12/41

15/12/41

SC 058

16/12/41

21/12/41

03/12/41

16/12/41

HX 163

18/12/41

19/12/41

24/12/41

24/12/41

ON 050

28/12/41

03/01/42

21/12/41

02/01/42

SC 061

07/01/42

07/01/42

13/01/42

24/01/42

HX 170

28/01/42

28/01/42

02/08/42

06/08/42

AT 019

07/08/42

07/08/42

31/07/42

08/08/42

SC 094

12/08/42

13/08/42

22/08/42

22/08/42

ON 123

29/08/42

03/09/42

30/08/42

02/09/42

HX 205

04/09/42

11/09/42

22/10/42

22/10/42

KX 004A

04/11/42

04/11/42

26/10/42

06/11/42

KMF 001

08/11/42

08/11/42

 

 

 

 

 

(Note on Convoys)

 

 

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