or G-Class Fleet Destroyer ordered from
Vickers Armstrong, Newcastle under the 1933 Programme on 5th March 1934. The ship was laid down as Yard Number 699 on
20th September that year with sister ship HMS GRIFFIN in the same shipyard. Both ships were launched on
15th August 1935. This destroyer was the 22nd RN warship to carry the name that dates firm 1545 when used for a
15 gun ship. Build was completed on lst February 1936 at a cost of £248,788,excluding Admiralty supplied
equipment, such as guns, ammunition and communications equipment. Before beginning service with the 1st
Destroyer Flotilla in the Mediterranean she was deployed briefly in Home
waters. Her Mediterranean service included escort duty during the Munich
B a t t l e H o n o u r s
ARMADA 1588 - DOVER 1652 - KENTISH KNOCK 1652 - FOUR DAY'S BATTLE 1666
- BARFLEUR 1692 - MARTINIQUE 1762 - OFF MARTINIQUE 1780 - EGYPT 1801 - DOVER
PATROL 1915-16 - ATLANTIC 1939 - NORWAY 1940 - DUNKIRK 1940 - SPARTIVENTO 1940 - MATAPAN 1941
- CRETE 1941 - LIBYA 1941-42 - MALTA CONVOYS 1941 - MEDITERRANEAN 1941
H e r l d i c D a t a
Badge: On a Field Blue, on
a mount Green a Greyhound Silver.
M o t t o
Carte ac celeriter: 'Surely and swiftly'.
S u m m a r y o f P r e
– W a r S e r v i c e
1 9 3 6
January Contractors trials
1st Build completion and commenced Acceptance Trials
Commissioned for service in 1st Destroyer
Flotilla Mediterranean Fleet based in Malta.
On completion of trials and storing took passage
Worked up for operational service.
March On completion deployed briefly in Home waters with 20th
April Deployed in Home waters
August Passage to Malta to join Flotilla.
September Deployed with Flotilla in Mediterranean.
(Note: Ships will have carried out Flotilla and Fleet exercises in accordance
the Exercises and
visits Programme for ships of Destroyer Command.
1 9 3 7
Fleet service with Flotilla.
1 9 3 8
January Flotilla duties in Mediterranean in continuation.
to (Note: During this period ships of the
Mediterranean Fleet were deployed for
British shipping during the Spanish Civil War and
carried out Non-Intervention patrols under an international
agreement. They also
evacuated British nationals to French ports.
Nominated for return to
UK for routine docking and short refit.
May Passage to Portsmouth
7th Taken in hand for docking and refit at HM Dockyard,
23rd On completion of dockyard work carried out sea
trials before sailing to resume
Flotilla duties in Malta
August Deployed with Flotilla based in Malta
September During Munich crisis prepared for war service and deployed
for escort duties
Escorted rms STRATHNAVER from Alexandria to
October Deployed in Red Sea s part of escort for HM Cruiser ARETHUSA during passage
November Reverted to Fleet Programme of visits and exercises.
1 9 3 9
January Fleet and Flotilla duties in continuation.
August War station allocated and took part in Fleet exercises
arranged in preparation for
anticipated hostilities with Italy
(Note: These had been arranged by CinC
Took up war station.
D e t a i l s o f W a r S e r v i c e
(for more ship information,
Naval History Homepage
and type name in Site Search)
September Deployed with lst Destroyer Flotilla for Fleet screening,
patrol and Contraband
Control in the Mediterranean.
October Transferred with Flotilla for duty in Home waters.
19th Passage from Gibraltar for deployment in Western Approaches.
23rd Deployed for anti-submarine patrol and escort based
November Transferred to 22nd Destroyer Flotilla based at Harwich.
12th Collided in fog with HM Destroyer GIPSY during their
passage to Harwich.
13th Under repair by HM Dockyard, Sheerness.
16th Joined Flotilla and deployed for Contraband Control
and escort duties in North
Sea and English Channel.
18th Rescued survivors from ss SIMON BOLIVAR in Thames
19th Rescued survivors from ss TORCHBEARER near Shipwash
5th Rejoined reformed lst Destroyer Flotilla at Harwich
and deployed for convoy
1 9 4 0
January North Sea and Channel deployment for convoy defence and Contraband Control
11th Midshipman and six ratings lost when sea boat
capsized during boarding of
16th Taken in hand for refit commercial shipyard at Hull.
March Under refit.
18th Rejoined Flotilla in continuation.
4th Transferred with Flotilla for Home Fleet screening
and took passage to Scapa
5th Escorted HM
Battlecruiser RENOWN with HM Destroyers GLOWWORM, HERO
provide cover for minelay off Norway (Operation WILFRED).
9th Took part in brief
engagement with HMS RENOWN against German battleships
GNEISENAU and SCHARNHORST
off Vestfjord, Norway.
(See ENGAGE THE ENEMY MORE CLOSELY by Corelli
Barnett and the Naval
10th Deployed with Flotilla in defence of fleet units
after the Battle of Narvik.
Remained in Norwegian waters for support of
military operations and escort
17th Returned to Scapa Flow.
16th Sustained damage in air attack.
22nd Taken in hand for repair by Green and Silley Weir at
May Under repair.
19th On completion of repair took passage to rejoin
Flotilla at Dover.
20th Deployed at Dover for Flotilla duties in Channel and
southern North Sea.
25th Provided naval gunfire support with HM Destroyer
GRAFTON against German
forces which were attacking Calais.
27th Transferred to Dover command to assist in evacuation
of troops from Dunkirk
Passage to Dover.
28th Embarked 123 troops for passage to Dover.
29th Embarked 720 troops for passage to Dover.
30th Embarked 506 troops for passage to Dover.
(For details see Naval Staff History (HMSO –2003
and NINE DAYS AT
by A Divine)
Damaged in air attack whilst returning to Dover
with several casualties to ship’s
Taken in tow by Polish destroyer BLYSKAWICA and
June Passage to Chatham for repair by HM Dockyard.
17th On completion of repair rejoined Flotilla at Dover.
(Note: Evacuation of troops and allied civil
personnel from French ports in
and Bay of Biscay were almost complete by
this time (Operations
AERIAL and CYCLE)
Deployed in Channel and southern North Sea.
July Deployed at Dover
Nominated for service at Gibraltar in 13th
Passage to Clyde.
24th Deployed with HM Destroyers ENCOUNTER, GALLANT and
escort for HM Aircraft Carrier ARGUS, mercantiles REINA DEL PACIFICO and
CLAN FERGUSON during
passage in Atlantic.
(Note: HMS ARGUS was on passage to Gibraltar
with aircraft for delivery to
The mercantiles were on passage to Middle East.
All the destroyers were on passage to
Gibraltar to join 13th Flotilla.)
30th Joined Flotilla at Gibraltar.
31st Deployed with HM Destroyers ENCOUNTER, GALLANT and
escort for HMS
ARGUS during Malta aircraft delivery (Operation
(For details of operations in western Mediterranean see Naval Staff History
(HMSO –2002) and THE BATTLE FOR THE
MEDITERRANEAN by D
4th Deployed for convoy defence at Gibraltar on completion of HURRY.
31st Joined Force A with HM Destroyers GALLANT, GRIFFIN
and HOTSPUR for
during passage of HM Aircraft Carrier
Battleship VALIANT, HM Cruisers
COVENTRY and CALCUTTA during passage
(Notes: These ships were in transit to
Alexandria to join the Fleet at Alexandria)
September On arrival in Malta took return passage to Gibraltar.
6th. Escorted Fleet units to Dakar for attack on French
Fleet (Operation MENACE).
(For details see Naval Staff History and MENACE
by A Marder).
23rd In action against French destroyer L'AUDACIEUSE with
AUSTRALIA (RAN) and HM Destroyer FURY.
(Note: The French warship beached after being
set on fire but was later
Return passage to Gibraltar on release from
30th Joined HM Destroyers FORTUNE and FORESTER for escort
of HM Aircraft
ROYAL during passage to Liverpool for routine
8th Arrived in UK.
Return passage to Gibraltar.
31at Deployed with HM Destroyers FAULKNOR, FORESTER,
screening of HMS RENOWN during patrol off West
Shadowed Vichy French destroyers off coast of
4th Attacked and damaged Italian submarine BIANCA off
Return passage from patrol to Gibraltar.
Nominated for duty with 14th Destroyer Flotilla
7th Joined Force F with HM Destroyers GALLANT, GRIFFIN
and ENCOUNTER as
HM Battleship BARHAM, HM Cruisers BERWICK and
during passage to
(Operation COAT - Transit of reinforcements for
Mediterranean Fleet at
10th Joined Mediterranean Fleet units west of Pantalleria.
(Note: These included HMS ILLUSTRIOUS, HM
RAMILLIES, VALIANT and WARSPITE with HM
ORION and SYDNEY screened by destroyers. HMS ILLUSTRIOUS
detached to carry out the attack on Italian Fleet at Taranto).
14th Joined Flotilla in Alexandria after passage with
Fleet units covering Convoy ME3.
24th Deployed with HM Destroyers DEFENDER, DIAMOND,
HEREWARD as screen for HM Battleship RAMILLIES, HM Cruisers BERWICK,
and NEWCASTLE in Force D to cover
passage of Convoy MW4 to
Malta as Force D. (Operation MB9).
26th Force D ships joined HM Aircraft Carrier EAGLE, HMS
(Force C) to meet military convoy and HM
and MANCHESTER joining Fleet in the east Mediterranean (Operation
27th Remained as escort for military convoy with HMS
COVENTRY, HM Destroyers
DIAMOND, GALLANT and HEREWARD when Italian units
sighted and later engaged in brief action with major units of Mediterranean
(Battle of Cape Spartivento).
(For details see
Naval Staff History and above references).
1st Returned to Alexandria with Fleet units after covering passage of
Deployed for convoy defence based at Alexandria
1 9 4 1
Mediterranean Fleet deployment in continuation.
7th Joined HM Destroyers
DAINTY, GALLANT, GRIFFIN, JERVIS, JUNO,
MOHAWK, NUBIAN as screen for HMS
ILLUSTRIOUS, HMS WARSPITE and
HMS VALIANT in Force A to provide Distant Cover for passage of
MW5 from Alexandria to Malta and ME6 from Malta
10th Part of screen for Fleet units during passage to
join military convoy on passage
from Gibraltar to Malta and Piraeus (Operation
Met convoy south of Pantellaria.
Came under heavy and sustained attacks by German
Fliegerkorps 10, west of
(Note: During these attacks HMS ILLUSTRIOUS was
See above references).
11th Came under further air attacks HMS SOUTHAMPTON badly
damaged and later
sunk by HMS
15th Returned with Fleet to Alexandria.
18th Joined HMS JANUS, HMS JERVIS and HMS JUNO for passage to Malta to
damaged HMS ILLUSTRIOUS.
19th Sank Italian submarine NEGHELLI in Aegean Sea.
23rd Sailed with HMS ILLUSTRIOUS to Alexandria.
25th Arrived at Alexandria.
February Deployed for screening of Fleet units covering passage
of military convoy to
22nd Escort duty south of Crete (Operation MC8)
24th Returned to Alexandria.
6th During escort of Convoy AS16 in Aegean sank Italian
Rescued crew of 43.
28th Escorted Fleet units during Battle of Matapan and
illuminated an enemy cruiser at
beginning of this night action.
Engaged and sank Italian destroyers VITTORIO
ALFIERI and GIOUSUE
CARDUCCI with HM
Destroyers GRIFFIN, HAVOCK and STUART (RAN).
Escorted Convoy AN15 to Pireaus from
Carried out offensive sweeps against shipping
off North Africa with HM
17th Sank Italian sailing ship ROMAGNA off Appollonia.
6th Joined Convoy MW7A from Alexandria for passage
to Malta as escort with HM Cruisers
PHOEBE, DIDO and CALCUTTA, HM Destroyers DEFENDER
8th Detached from MW7 merged convoy and Joined Fleet
units for escort and cover of the
passage of military convoy bringing
tanks for 8th Army from UK
12th On release from TIGER convoy deployed for support of
operations in defence of
22nd During search for invasion craft off Crete sank
Caique in Anti Kithera Channel.
Came under heavy dive bombing attack off
Sank in position 30.00N 24.40E after three
Captain and 79 of ship's company killed.
Four were taken prisoner.
Other survivors picked up by HM Destroyers
KANDAHAR and KINGSTON.
(Note: Casualty List was published on 7th March
CONVOY ESCORT MOVEMENTS of
by Don Kindell
This convoy list has not been cross-checked with the text above
Date convoy sailed
Joined convoy as escort
Date convoy arrived
002 P 1
(Note on Convoys)