N or NAPIER-Class
destroyer ordered from John Brown, Clydebank
under the 1939 Programme on 15th April 1939
and laid down as Job No 564 on 27 July 1939.
She was launched on 4th July 1940 and
completed on 19th December 1940. The ship
was manned by the Royal Australian Navy and
was commissioned on 8th January
1941 for service in the 7th Destroyer
Flotilla. After a successful WARSHIP WEEK
National Savings campaign in March 1942 she
was adopted by the civil community of
Darlington, Co. Durham. Sister ships
NAPIER, NEPAL, NESTOR and NORMAN were also
manned by the Royal Australian Navy.
a t t l
e H o n o u r s
CONVOYS 1941 - CRETE 1941 - LIBYA 1941
e r a l d i c D a t a
In front of two bars
wavy blue a quatrefoil
with a demi
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t a i l s o f W a
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9 4 0
- Build completion.
9 4 1
- Commissioned for service in Royal
in NW Approaches.
- Prepared for foreign service at Clydebank.
- At Clydebank during heavy air attacks.
- On completion of storing took passage to
Scapa Flow for work-up with ships of Home
passage to join 7th Destroyer Flotilla at
Alexandria via Cape of Good Hope.
- Arrived at Aden.
rms QUEEN ELIZABETH and rms QUEEN MARY
during passage in Red Sea.
- Joined Flotilla at Alexandria.
- Deployed with HM Destroyers GRIFFIN,
HAVOCK, HERO, HEREWARD, HOTSPUR, JERVIS,
JUNO, KANDAHAR, KIMBERLEY, KINGSTON and
NUBIAN as screen for HM Aircraft Carrier
FORMIDABLE, HM Battleships BARHAM, VALIANT
and WARSPITE, HM Cruisers AJAX, ORION, PERTH
and ABDIEL to provide Distant Cover for
passage of Convoy MW7 taking troops to Malta
and military convoy from Gibraltar carrying
stores for Alexandria (Operation TIGER.)
(Note: Supply ship HMS BRECONSHIRE was with
Fleet units for transit to Malta.)
- Remained with Mediterranean Fleet units
when MW7 was detached to go to Malta.
- Joined TIGER Convoy as part of screen
during passage to Alexandria.
- Arrived at Alexandria with Mediterranean
- Passage to Crete to join Fleet units for
defence of island.
- Bombardment German airfield at Scarpanto
with HMS JERVIS and HMS ILEX.
- Deployed for patrol north of Crete with HM
Destroyers JERVIS, ILEX, and HAVOCK
- Embarked Commando for planned landing and
took passage to Crete with HMS ABDIEL and
- Landed troops and stores at Suda Bay when
operation was cancelled due to weather
- Returned to Alexandria to embark stores.
- Passage to Sphakia.
- Took part in evacuation of troops at
Sphakia with HM Destroyers STUART (RAN),
JAGUAR and DEFENDER. (Note: 700 Troops were
embarked.) (Editors Note: Destroyers
taking part to be reconciled with Naval
Events for May 1941
and those on passage
on 31st following, also with number of
troops lifted - thanks to Michal Derela)
- Passage with HM Destroyers NAPIER, KELVIN
and KANDAHAR for Sphakia. (Note: Damaged
during air attacks in return passage. For
details of defence of Crete and evacuation
see THE BATTLE FOR CRETE by SW Pack, London
Gazette (1948), ENGAGE THE ENEMY MORE
CLOSELY by C Barnett and Naval Staff
repair at Alexandria.
for support of military operations in Syria
against Vichy French. (Operation EXPORTER).
passage to join units of Mediterranean Fleet
- Deployed off Palestine coast.
- Engaged Vichy French destroyer GUÉPARD
attempting to enter Beirut. Carried out
surface gun and torpedo attacks with HM
Cruisers LEANDER, NAIAD and HM Destroyer
KINGSTON which were unsuccessful and enemy
ship was able to escape. (See RELUCTANT
ENEMIES by W Tute.
Inshore Squadron to support garrisons in
Tobruk and Mersa Matruh.
- Detached for screening duty with
- Joined HM Battleships QUEEN ELIZABETH and
VALIANT, HM Cruisers AJAX, CARLISLE, NAIAD,
HOBART (RAN), LEANDER, PHOEBE, LATONA and
ABDIEL for Diversionary operation during
passage of relief convoy to Malta from
Gibraltar (Operation MD5). (Note: HM
Destroyers HASTY, HAVOCK, JACKAL, JAGUAR,
JERVIS, KANDAHAR, KIMBERLEY, KINGSTON and
NUBIAN were also deployed for screening of
- Returned to Alexandria with Fleet units
and resumed Tobruk support.
support in continuation.
- Took part in relief of ANZAC troops from
Tobruk with HM Minelaying Cruisers LATONA
and ABDIEL, HM Australian Cruiser HOBART and
HMAS NAPIER. (Note: In all 6,000 troops were
taken to Egypt to await return to
Fleet duties. (Note: During this period
major units of the Mediterranean Fleet
carried out another diversionary operation
during passage of a relief convoy to Malta
from Gibraltar (Operation MD6).)
and support duties in Eastern Mediterranean
for screening duties in Eastern
- Deployed with HM Cruiser ABDIEL and HM
Destroyer NAPIER for transfer of troops from
Palestine to Cyprus to reinforce garrison.
- Resumed Flotilla duties for Fleet
screening at Alexandria.
- Joined HM Battleships BARHAM, QUEEN
ELIZABETH and VALIANT with seven other Fleet
destroyers as screen during operation to
intercept convoy on passage to Benghazi.
Other destroyer were HMS JERVIS, HMS JACKAL
and HMS HOTSPUR.
- Assisted in rescue operations after HM
Battleship BARHAM was torpedoed by U331 and
sunk north of Sollum.
duties in continuation based at Alexandria.
- Deployed on anti-submarine sweep while
other Fleet units, including HMAS NAPIER and
NESTOR, carried out bombardment of
enemy positions at Bardia.
9 4 2
3rd - Took
passage from Alexandria with HMAS NAPIER
and NESTOR to join
Eastern Fleet. Deployed
in Red Sea.
- Joined HM Aircraft Carrier INDOMITABLE
with HMAS NAPIER and NESTOR.
Escorted INDOMITABLE with NESTOR and NIZAM
during passage from Port Sudan to Indian
Ocean (Operation OPPONENT). HMS
INDOMITABLE was carrying HURRICANE
aircraft for delivery to Singapore.
(See WAR WITH JAPAN Volume II (HMSO).)
- Aircraft launched near Cocos islands
after call at Addu Atoll and passage as
Further launch of aircraft. (See WAR WITH
JAPAN for details.).
of HMS INDOMITABLE in continuation.
- Delivery operation cancelled and took
passage with HMS INDOMITABLE to Colombo.
- At Colombo and deployed with Flotilla in
Eastern Fleet. Nominated for escort of
military convoy SU1 and took passage to join
in Indian Ocean during transit from Aden to
Fremantle. (Note: This convoy was taking
ANZAC troops back to Australia after
withdrawal from Western Desert because of
Japanese threat to Australia.)
convoy SU1 with HM Battleship ROYAL
SOVEREIGN, HM Cruiser CORNWALL, HM
Destroyers EXPRESS, and VAMPIRE (RAN).
(Note: This convoy of 12 troopships was
taking ANZAC personnel back to Australia
after the Japanese declaration of war.)
release from SU1 returned to Colombo. Taken
in hand for repair at Bombay.
for return to Mediterranean on completion.
On completion took passage to Alexandria for
planned Malta relief convoy (Operation
to Alexandria with 7th Destroyer Flotilla.
- Part of screen for HM Cruisers ARETHUSA,
BIRMINGHAM, CLEOPATRA, DIDO, NEWCASTLE,
EURYALUS and HERMIONE with HM Destroyers
HASTY, HERO, INCONSTANT, JAVELIN, JERVIS,
KELVIN, NAPIER, NESTOR, NORMAN, PAKENHAM,
PALADIN, SIKH and ZULU. (Note: These ships
were providing additional cover for passage
of Convoy MW11 to Malta from Alexandria.)
- Under heavy and sustained air attacks and
threat of surface attack by an Italian
Squadron including two battleships.
- Convoy ordered by CinC at Alexandria to
reverse course to eastward. Under attacks by
Italian E-Boats during which HMS HASTY had
to be sunk after major damage and HMS
NEWCASTLE was disabled. Heavy and sustained
air attacks resumed after daylight. HM
Destroyer AIREDALE sunk. Convoy ordered to
resume passage towards Malta. When surface
threat renewed, convoy again ordered to turn
eastwards. Despite further instructions to
resume passage to Malta operation abandoned
due to high expenditure of anti-aircraft
- HMS HERMIONE torpedoed by U205 during
return passage and HM Destroyer NESTOR which
had been damaged during air attacks on 15th
had to be sunk. Returned to Alexandria with
Fleet units. (For full details of this
disastrous and ill-directed operation see
the THE BATTLE FOR THE MEDITERRANEAN, ENGAGE
THE ENEMY MORE CLOSELY and Naval Staff
- On release from service in the
Mediterranean took passage to Kilindini for
Indian Ocean convoy defence.
arrival at Kilindini deployed for convoy
defence in Indian Ocean. Nominated for
service with Eastern Fleet ships for planned
- Sailed from Kilindini for Colombo with HM
Destroyers NORMAN (RAN), INCONSTANT and
Dutch VAN GALEN to join Fleet units for
- HMS NAPIER (Cdre D) joined for passage to
- At Colombo and joined by Netherlands
- Deployed with HM Destroyer NAPIER (Cdre D)
and same destroyers as screen for HM
Battleship WARSPITE, HM Aircraft Carriers
ILLUSTRIOUS and FORMIDABLE, HM Cruisers
EFFINGHAM, MAURITIUS and Dutch cruiser
HEEMSKERCK to provide cover for passage of
three Dummy Convoys on passage from
Vizagapatam, Madras and Trincomalee towards
Andaman Islands. (Operation STAB - A
diversionary operation to suggest landing
operations. See WAR WITH JAPAN (HMSO).)
- Returned to Trincomalee before taking
passage to Kilindini to prepare for planned
landings on Madagascar. (Note: See above
reference for explanation of early return by
Force A ships.)
part in preparatory exercise
- Sailed from Kilindini to make rendezvous
60 miles south of Mayotta
Island with HM Cruiser BIRMINGHAM, HM
Aircraft Carrier ILLUSTRIOUS, Dutch cruiser
HEEMSKERCK and ships of assault convoy on
passage to Majunga for landings of troops to
complete occupation of Madagascar (Operation
STREAM). (Note: Ships of Force M providing
cover and control of landings also included
HM Battleship WARSPITE, HM Aircraft Carrier
ILLUSTRIOUS, HM Cruisers GAMBIA DAUNTLESS
and MANXMAN, HM Monitor EREBUS, HM Seaplane
Carrier ALBATROSS, HM Destroyers NAPIER,
NORMAN, FOXHOUND, HOTSPUR, ARROW, ACTIVE,
BLACKMORE, INCONSTANT, FORTUNE, NEPAL, Dutch
VAN GALEN and Dutch TJERK HIDDES). Provided
A/S defence during passage to beachhead.
- Present at landings to provide
anti-submarine defence. (Note: No
bombardment was required. For details see
WAR WITH JAPAN (HMSO) and Naval Staff
- On release resumed Flotilla duties for
patrol and convoy defence.
- Deployed for patrol to intercept Vichy
French mercantiles on passage to Laurenco
Marques. (See WAR WITH JAPAN.
- Intercepted and boarded mercantile ss
MARECHEL GELLJENI after report by a South
African Air Force aircraft. Prize was
escorted to Capetown by HM South African
- Patrol in continuation with HM Destroyer
- After report from patrol aircraft located
abandoned Vichy French mercantile ss ADMIRAL
PIERRE. Attempt to prevent sinking due to
scuttling failed and French ship sunk by
to Simonstown to prepare for refit.
- Deployed with HM Destroyers ACTIVE, ARROW,
FOXHOUND and HM Corvette ROCKROSE for A/S
operations after sinking of six mercantiles
by U-Boat off Cape of Good Hope. (Note: Took
part in rescue of survivors. For details see
HITLER'S U-BOAT WAR by C Blair.)
release from operations taken in hand for
refit by HM Dockyard, Simonstown.
to South Atlantic Station on completion of
post refit trials. Deployed for convoy
defence and interception.
9 4 3
defence duty in South Atlantic and Indian
- Joined HM Destroyers NORMAN (RAN),
QUADRANT and REDOUBT in escort of military
convoy WS30 in Indian Ocean during passage
- Remained with WS30 for passage from Cape
- Detached from WS30 on arrival at Durban.
to Indian Ocean with Flotilla to resume
duties based at Kilindini. Nominated for
special service at Colombo.
- Took passage from Kilindini with HM
Destroyers NORMAN, INCONSTANT and Dutch VAN
GALEN for Colombo with call at Seychelles to
join Force A.
- HMAS NAPIER joined during passage.
24th to 29th
- Deployed with HM Cruisers SUFFOLK,
NEWCASTLE, HM Destroyers RELENTLESS , RAIDER
and RFA tanker to carry out search for
U-Boats and supply ship CHARLOTTE SCHLIEMANN
(Operation PLAYER - Note: U-Boats were known
to be active in Indian Ocean and U-Boat
refuelling had taken place. See above
- Search abandoned and resumed convoy
Ocean convoy defence in continuation.
to Eastern Fleet based at Trincomalee and
with Eastern Fleet on convoy defence and
patrol in Indian Ocean. (For details of
operations in Indian Ocean see OPERATION
PACIFIC by E Gray.)
9 4 4
defence and patrol in India Ocean.
for Fleet screening duties.
- Part of Task Force 69 as screen for HM
Battleships QUEEN ELIZABETH and VALIANT,
French Battleship RICHELIEU, HM Cruisers
NEWCASTLE, NIGERIA and CEYLON and Dutch
cruiser TROMP with HM Destroyers ROTHERHAM,
RACEHORSE, PENN, PETARD, QUIBERON, NAPIER
(RAN) and Dutch destroyer VAN GALEN
- Task Force 69 covered air operations by HM
Aircraft Carrier ILLUSTRIOUS and the US
Aircraft Carrier SARATOGA (Task Force 70)
against targets at Sabang. (See OPERATION
on convoy defence and patrol in Indian Ocean
and detached for Fleet duty as required.
(See ENGAGE THE ENEMY MORE CLOSELY)
for refit in Australia
- Arrived at Melbourne
refit at Williamstown
completion of post refit trials took passage
to Ceylon to resume Flotilla duties with
Eastern Fleet. (Note: On formation of
British Pacific Fleet transferred to Eastern
Fleet with ships of 7th Flotilla and
retained in Eastern Fleet for support of
planned operations in Burma
in support of military operations in Burma
including defence of military convoys in Bay
of Bengal (See ENGAGE THE ENEMY MORE
9 4 5
in support of military operations in Burma
from Eastern Fleet service and took passage
to Australia to join British Pacific Fleet.
Called at Fremantle on passage.
While proceeding Melbourne for Fremantle,
and off Cape Leeuwin at night, changed
course in heavy seas and 10 ratings swept
overboard, all drowned.
for service in British Pacific Fleet
including exercises off Sydney using US Navy
communications and manoeuvring procedures.
Pennant Number for visual signalling
purposes changed to D15 to suit US Navy
identity for destroyers.
for escort of Logistics Group (Task Force
112) in support of operations by Task Force
57. Passage to Manus to join Task Force 112
for escort duty in SW Pacific.
for escort of Logistics Group during air
operations against airfields in Sakashima
Gunto Group (Operation ICEBERG).
- Detached for temporary screening duties
with Task Force 57 ships.
- After release from Fleet screen deployed
in Area COOLIE with HM Escort Aircraft
Carriers RULER and STRIKER, HM Sloops
PHEASANT, CRANE and WOODCOCK for defence of
tankers during replenishment of ships of
Task Force. (For details see THE FORGOTTEN
FLEET by J Winton and Naval Staff History.)
- On completion of ICEBERG II Fleet Train
took passage to Australia for R&R.
and Leave period in Australia. (Note: Some
ships remained in Brisbane. See above
- Took passage for Fleet Train escort duties
during BPF operations against targets in
Fleet deployment in continuation. (Note:
Main British Pacific Fleet units, now
designated Task Force 37 and part of
3rd Fleet, arrived at Manus on 4th July.)
- Part of screen for Logistics Group during
refuelling and replenishment of BPF. (Note:
Escort for the tankers and Stores Issuing
Ships included HM Escort Carriers RULER,
STRIKER, HM Destroyers NAPIER, HM Sloops
PHEASANT, WHIMBREL, REDPOLE, HM Frigate
FINDHORN and HM Minesweeper GAWLER.)
- Part of escort for Logistics Group during
Fleet replenishment. (Note: An additional
tanker was available but not fully
operational. Escort for Group had been
increased. See above references. For details
of British Pacific Fleet operations see
above references, TASK FORCE 57 by P Smith.
and ENGAGE THE ENEMY MORE CLOSELY by C.
- Part of escort for Logistics Group during
Fleet replenishment. (Note: Other warships
in Group included HM Escort Carriers
ARBITER, CHASER, RULER, HM Destroyer NORMAN,
HM Sloops PHEASANT, CRANE and HM
Minesweepers BURNIE and BALLARAT. Hospital
Ship ss TJITJALENGKA was deployed in Group.)
- After RN warships were withdrawn from
operations due to lack of fuel from British
tankers, transferred to Task Group 38.5 with
HM Destroyer NAPIER (RAN) and continued
escort duty with Support Group. (For details
of formation of the British Token Force
which was retained in the 3rd US Fleet. .See
- Provided personnel for Commonwealth
component of Third Fleet Allied Landing
Force which occupied the Japanese naval base
on the island of Azuma.
- Joined HM Battleship KING GEORGE V, HM
Cruisers GAMBIA and NEWFOUNDLAND with HMS
NAPIER and US destroyers UHLMANN and BENHAM
in re-introduced Task Force 37 for the
formal entry into Japanese waters.
- Anchored in Sagami Wan with TF37 after
delay. (Note: Ship flew Australian Flag at
- Proceeded into Tokyo Bay with allied
Flagship Groups. (Note: HM Destroyer QUALITY
and Hospital Ship TJITJALENGKA had joined
- Present at formal surrender ceremony in
Tokyo Bay with representative ships of the
British Pacific Fleet with HM Aircraft
Carrier INDEFATIGABLE, HM Battleship KING
GEORGE V, HM Cruisers NEWFOUNDLAND, HOBART
(RAN), SHROPSHIRE (RAN) and GAMBIA (RNZN),
HM Destroyers BARFLEUR, WRANGLER, WAKEFUL,
TROUBRIDGE, TERMAGANT, TENACIOUS, TEAZER,
NAPIER (RAN), BATAAN (RAN) and WARRAMUNGA
o s t W a r N
o t e s
NIZAM remained in Japanese waters after the
surrender ceremony and embarked PoW
GAMBIA. On release from duties associated
with collection of PoW
and allied nationals
the ship returned to
Sydney and was handed back to the Royal Navy
in October 1945. She then sailed
to UK and
after arrival at Sheerness
on 13th December 1945 was reduced to Reserve
status. Placed in
Reserve Fleet at
Harwich she remained there until 1953 when
moved to Chatham. The ship was put on
Disposal List in 1955 and sold to T&W
Ward for breaking-up at Grays, Essex where
she arrived on
16th November that
of HMAS NIZAM
convoy lists have not been cross-checked
with the text above
Date convoy sailed
convoy as escort
Date convoy arrived