PALADIN-Class Fleet Destroyer ordered from Hawthorn Leslie at Newcastle on 2nd October
1939 with 2nd Emergency
Flotilla. The ship was originally to have been named ONSLAUGHT but this was
changed in order to have
all eight ships of the Flotilla with names starting with P. She was
laid down on 5th March 1940 and launched
on 10th April 1941 as the 2nd RN warship to bear the name that had previously
used by cruiser lost in 1915.
Build was completed on 13th April 1942 and cost £410,905, excluding Admiralty
supplied equipment such as
guns and communications outfits. After a successful WARSHIP WEEK
National Savings campaign in March 1942 she was adopted by the civil community of Kensington, London.
B a t t l e H
o n o u r s
ATLANTIC 1942-43 - MALTA CONVOYS 1942
- NORTH AFRICA 1942-43 - SICILY 1943 - SALERNO 1943 - AEGEAN 1943 - BURMA 1944 –45
H e r a l d i c
D a t a
Badge On a
Field per Pale wavy and White a bloodhound Proper.
D e t a i l s
o f W a r
S e r v i c e
(for more ship information,
to Naval History Homepage
and type name in Site Search)
1 9 4 2
Contractors trials and commissioning.
13th Build completion and acceptance
16th Passage to Scapa Flow for work-up with
(Note: Damaged in collision
with Fleet Auxiliary CHANNEL FISHER).
Passage for repair at
(Note: Direction Finding
equipment fitted for interception of radio signals and for position finding
of source of these transmissions.)
May On completion of work resumed
work-up at Scapa Flow.
(Note: Splits discovered
in internal bulkheads were considered to be due to depth charge
explosions fracturing joints poorly welded
See SEEK AND
STRIKE by W Hackmann and BRITISH DESTROYERS by E March.)
June Home Fleet duties in NW
Approaches in continuation.
19th Joined military convoy WS19P in Clyde
with HM Destroyers PENN. QUENTIN and
as screen for HM
Battleships RODNEY and NELSON to provide cover during passage in Atlantic.
26th Detached from WS19 with same ships
after relief by HM Cruiser SHROPSHIRE.
Resumed Home Fleet duties
July Deployed for screening and
patrol duties with Home Fleet.
19th During escort of HM Battleships
NELSON and RODNEY under attack by U-boat.
Carried out counter attack
with HMS PENN without success.
Nominated for escort of
Malta relief convoy with Home Fleet ships.
31st Joined escort for military convoy
WS21 as Ocean Escort during passage to
(Note: For details of
Home Fleet ships detached for PEDESTAL see PEDESTAL by P Smith and
Sailed from Clyde with WS21S
10th Part of Force X as screen for HM
Cruisers CAIRO, KENYA, NIGERIA and
with HM Destroyers INTREPID, ICARUS,
FURY, PENN, LEDBURY,
BRAMHAM, TARTAR and
ASHANTI for Close Escort of convoy during passage to Malta from
12th Under air and submarine attacks.
HM Aircraft Carrier EAGLE
was sunk by U73.
submarine COBALTO with HM Destroyer ITHURIEL and forced it to surface
where it was rammed and
sunk by HMS ITHURIEL.
(For details of Operation see PEDESTAL
by Peter C. Smith, THE BATTLE FOR THE
MEDITERRANEAN by D
MacIntyre and the Naval Staff History)
Sank HM Cruiser CAIRO by
torpedo after she had been badly damaged by the Italian submarine
AXUM, which had also hit
and damaged HM Cruiser NIGERIA.
(Note: A HURRICANE
pilot from HMS INDOMITABLE and an Italian airman were rescued during
13th Rescued 150 of the survivors from HM
Cruiser MANCHESTER off Tunisian coast.
(Note: HM Destroyer
SOMALI rescued other survivors from this cruiser.)
14th After passage of WS21S through
Sicilian Narrows returned to join ships of the Covering Force Z off
(Note: HMS PENN, HMS
BRAMHAM and HMS LEDBURY remained with convoy until entry of
mercantiles into Malta. See above references.)
21st Returned to Gibraltar with ships of
Force Z and Force X.
29th Deployed with HM Destroyers QUENTIN
and VIMY to escort HMS QUEEN ELIZABETH for
Atlantic passage to West
(Note: HM Battleship
QUEEN ELIZABETH was to be repaired in Norfolk, Va USA after being
an attack by Italian frogmen at Alexandria in Dec. 1941.)
31st Detached from escort duty and took
passage to Port of Spain, Trinidad.
3rd Participated in search and sinking of
U162 with HM Destroyers VIMY and QUENTIN.
Submarine was sunk by
HMS VIMY after ramming in position 12. 19N, 59 33W following torpedo
attack and lengthy
search operation off Barbados. 49 survivors rescued.
See U-BOATS DESTROYED by
P Kemp and HITLER'S U-BOAT WAR by C Blair Vol.1.
4th Landed prisoners at Port of Spain.
Returned to Scapa Flow
and resumed Flotilla duties with Home Fleet.
October Home Fleet service with Flotilla in
Nominated for support of
allied landings in North Africa with HM Destroyer PENN.
(Operation TORCH - For
details see ENGAGE THE ENEMY MORE CLOSELY, Naval Staff
History and RELUCTANT
ENEMIES by W Tute
November Passage to Gibraltar as part of screen
for Home Fleet units detached for support of landings.
8th Part of Eastern Task Force as screen
for major units during landings.
Deployed for screening, anti-submarine patrol, support and
escort duty in western Mediterranean
December Based at Oran in continuation
2nd Towed damaged minelayer HMS MANXMAN
to Oran following torpedo attack by U651.
20th Deployed with HMS PANTHER to
reinforce escort for Convoy KMF5A under U-boat attack off
North African coast.
21st Joined HM Destroyers LAFOREY,
LIGHTNING, PENN and WISHART in rescue operations when
troopship ss STRATHALLAN was torpedoed during passage of
(Note: Over 1,000 troops
were taken off. Other ships including HMS WISHART rescued 1,179
caught fire and sank later
1 9 4 3
January Deployed in Atlantic for escort duty.
Passage from Gibraltar with HM Destroyers PANTHER and PENN to escort HM
ILLUSTRIOUS during Atlantic passage from Kilindini to Freetown.
25th Joined HMS ILLUSTRIOUS.
26th Escort of HMS ILLUSTRIOUS in
continuation with HM Destroyers ILEX, HOLCOMBE, PENN and
PANTHER during passage
31st Detached with HMS PENN and HMS PANTHER
and took passage to Casablanca to refuel.
February Rejoined HMS ILLUSTRIOUS with HMS
PANTHER and HMS PENN as escort for passage to Clyde.
Taken in hand for repair
to generator defect.
On completion took passage to Clyde to
rejoin Flotilla for convoy defence with HM Destroyers
OBDURATE and OPPORTUNE.
March Deployed in Western Approaches for
support and defence of Atlantic convoys
April Deployed with HM Escort Carrier BITER, HM
Destroyer OBDURATE and HM Destroyer
OPPORTUNE as 5th Escort
(Note: For details of
development of weapons used in this crucial stage of the Battle of the Atlantic
see SEEK AND
STRIKE by W Hackmann, THE TORPEDOMEN by E Poland and RADAR
AT SEA by D
25th Deployed with Group in defence of
convoys ONS4 and sank U203 detected on surface by aircraft from HMS
Attacked U753 which
(See THE BATTLE OF THE ATLANTIC by D MacIntyre, U-BOAT WAR IN THE
HITLER'S U-BOAT WAR by C Blair.)
Atlantic support duties in continuation.
5th Took passage from St Johns,
Newfoundland to support escorts for Convoys HX237 and SC129 which were
under attack by U-Boat Groups.
7th Joined HX237 with ships of Group after delay
due to fog off Newfoundland.
12th Took part in anti-submarine operations
with HMS OPPORTUNE.
13th Participated in further anti-submarine
operations with ships of Group.
(Note: U456 was sunk after being
damaged by aircraft from HMS BITER. See above references)
Detached with Group to support SC129.
On release from SC129 under repair in Clyde shipyard
Passage to Scapa Flow to resume Fleet duties.
Nominated for support of allied landings in Sicily.
Passage to Mediterranean
as escort for HM Battleship KING GEORGE V with HMS PENN and
HMS PANTHER for support
of landings in Sicily.
July Prepared for support duties
during Operation HUSKY.
8th Deployed south of Sardinia as screen
for HMS KING GEORGE V and HMS HOWE
forming Reserve Covering
Group to prevent interference by Italian Fleet during landings.
(Operation HUSKY - For
details see ENGAGE THE ENEMY MORE CLOSELY by C. Barnett
and the Naval Staff
9th Took part in bombardment of Trapani
and Marsala with HMS KING GEORGE V and HMS HOWE.
Hit submerged rock and
Took passage to Alexandria
for replacement of port propeller.
On completion resumed
operational duty based at Bizerta
August .Based at Bizerta for support duties.
8th Deployed with HM Cruisers AURORA,
DIDO, SIRIUS and PENELOPE, HM Destroyers JERVIS,
PALADIN and PENN for bombardment duties in preparation for landings at
9th Bombarded positions at Castelmare di
Stabea, near Naples and later, Cape Vaticano on Calabrian
west coast (Operation
28th Part of escort for HM Aircraft Carrier
FORMIDABLE during passage from
Alexandria to Malta with
three other Fleet destroyers.
Passage to Algiers for
screening of Force H ships.
1st Joined Force H ships at Algiers.
6th Part of screen for HMS KING GEORGE V
and HMS HOWE with ships of Flotilla during passage
8th Deployed with screen during covering of
landings at Salerno.
(Operation AVALANCHE – see above references.)
9th Part of screen for HMS KING GEORGE V
and HMS HOWE during escort of surrendered Italian
battleships ANDREA DORIA and CAIO
DUILIO, cruisers CADORNA, POMPEO MAGNO and
destroyer DA ROCCO on passage to Malta from Taranto.
17th Deployed off Salerno for bombardment
in support of military operations and for anti-submarine
On release of Reserve
Covering Force deployed in support of operations in western Mediterranean.
25th Embarked stores and vehicles for
passage to Ajaccio following the evacuation of German forces.
26th Deployed with HM Destroyer PATHFINDER
to replace Free French destroyer LE FANTASQUE
as escort for Free
French cruiser JEANNE D’ARC during transport of troops from Algiers to Ajaccio.
(Note: LE FANTASQUE had run
October Transferred to Levant Force for
support of operations in defence of islands in Aegean against German
to occupy after Italian
4th Deployed with HM Cruisers AURORA and
DIDO, HM Destroyers PETARD, PENN and TUMULT
south of Crete for
interception of invasion craft.
5th Escorted damaged cruisers HMS AURORA
and DIDO to Alexandria after they had been in collision
south of Cos.
7th Deployed in support of military
operations in the Aegean.
17th Embarked stores and personnel for
Escorted HM Cruiser SIRIUS, HM Destroyers ECLIPSE and BEAUFORT during
meet HM Cruiser AURORA for bombardment of Cos harbour.
18th Sheltered in Turkish waters during
daylight and then landed stores and personnel
at Alinda Bay.
Carried out interception patrol
north of Levitha.
21st Sailed from Alexandria with HM
Destroyer JERVIS, HURWORTH and Greek ADRIAS with troops
and stores for defence of garrison at Leros.
23rd Landed stores.
(Note: HMS HURWORTH and
Greek ADRIAS were detached as a diversion and ran into a
. HMS HURWORTH
was sunk and ADRIAS badly damaged. See WAR IN THE AEGEAN.)
27th Escorted HM Cruiser AURORA with HM
Destroyers EXMOOR and BLENCATHRA to relieve HM
Cruiser PHOEBE and to carry out interception patrol.
November Aegean defence duties in continuation.
3rd Embarked troops of 1st En Kings Own
Royal Rifle Corps at Alexandria. Sailed with HM Cruiser
PHOEBE, HM Destroyer FAULKNOR, ECHO and PENN
(Note: Owing to lack of
space, motor transport and Bren carriers were not taken.
4th After lay up in Gulf of Doris during
daylight landed troops at Leros.
5th Laid up in Turkish waters during
7th Deployed with HMS PENN for
interception of invasion craft between Pares and Naxos.
No contact made but sank
German decoy ship GA45 off Crete.
(Note: The enemy deployed this
type of ship to attract allied submarines for a surface engagement,
the role of British Q Ships in WW1)
28th Detached and joined HM Destroyer FURY
to escort HM Cruiser BIRMINGHAM damaged by
torpedo fired from U407
29th Escorted HMS BIRMINGHAM to Alexandria
December Resumed Aegean duty in support of
10th On release from Aegean Force resume
Flotilla duties with Fleet.
For details of the
disastrous operations in the Aegean during late 1943 see WAR IN THE AEGEAN
by P Smith and E
Nominated for service with
Flotilla in Eastern Fleet.
1 9 4 4
January Passage to Trincomalee for service
in 16th Destroyer Division of 11th Flotilla.
February Deployed for screening, convoy escort and patrol duties in Indian Ocean.
(Note: Did not take part with HMS PALADIN and HMS PETARD OF Flotilla
for the escort of military convoy KR8 during which the troopship KHEDIVE
ISMAIL was torpedoed with
heavy loss of life.)
21st Part of screen for H M Battleships QUEEN
ELIZABETH and VALIANT, HM Battlecruiser
RENOWN, HM Aircraft Carrier ILLUSTRIOUS, HM Cruisers LONDON, GAMBIA
CEYLON and CUMBERLAND, with HM Destroyers QUILLIAM, QUALITY,
NAPIER (RAN), NORMAN (RAN), NEPAL( RAN), QUIBERON (RAN), Dutch VAN GALEN
Met US aircraft carrier USS SARATOGA, us Destroyers USS CUMMINGS, DUNLOP
FANNING which were joining
Eastern Fleet for future operations in Indian Ocean.
2nd Returned to Trincomalee with screen for
RN and USN ships and resumed duties with Flotilla for
defence of convoys in Indian Ocean.
May Indian Ocean convoy defence in
to (Note: Safe passage of
military convoys carrying troops for 14th Army service in Burma was given high
July priority by CinC
Took part in extensive search off South Africa for U456 with aircraft
and trawler group.
(Note: This lasted for two
days but was unsuccessful).
September Indian Ocean Convoy defence in continuation.
December Deployed in support of military operations
Took part in operation to
prevent escape of Japanese personnel escaping from Ramree.
1 9 4 5
January Military support and convoy defence in
3rd Deployed for support of landings at
Kayaba with HM Cruisers NEWCASTLE, NIGERIA, PHOBE,
HM Destroyers RAPID and
(Operation LIGHTNING – See
Naval Staff History and WAR WITH JAPAN (HMSO).
5th Returned to Trincomalee
Took passage to Akyab with HM Battleship QUEEN ELIZABETH and HM
Provided bombardment at Ramree Island during landings (Operation
Carried out interception patrol off Ramree Island.
Provided further bombardment in support of advance by Indian Army.
HMS PHOEBE joined Bombardment Force
Returned to Chittagong to
re-fuel and replenish ammunition stock.
Resumed support duties off Burma.
Relieved by HMS PALADIN.
4th Landed troops on SE coast of Ramree
Island which were unopposed.
5 th Towed HM Destroyer NEPAL off sandbank.
8th Took part in operation to prevent escape
of Japanese personnel escaping from Ramree. (Operation BLOCK)
(Note: HMS PALADIN
TOGETHER WITH Motor Launches and Landing Craft were also used to
evacuating enemy troops, See THE FORGOTTEN FLEET by J Winton and
Bombarded escape routes.
Resumed patrol and support duties after re-fuelling from HMS NEPAL.
Under air attack in Pakseik
Taungnaw River mouth south of Akyab and sustained serious damage from near
(Note: Starboard engine
disabled and hull structure damaged.
leaks and some flooding caused.)
Emergency repair completed and
took passage using Port engine.
Further repair carried out in main anchorage at Ramree Island.
Took passage to Colombo with call at Trincomalee on 27th.
1st Arrived at Colombo for docking and
25th Undocked after repair to allow passage
(Note: Ship declared
Constructive Total Loss and to be reduced to Reserve status.)
13th Sailed from Colombo for Bombay.
17th Took passage to UK via Red Sea from
26th Sustained weather damage during Red Sea
passage and delayed by repair.
May Passage in Mediterranean
11th Called at Dartmouth.
16th At Plymouth after paying off and began
reduction to Reserve.
July Towed to Dartmouth to lay-up in
Beached at Dartmouth to
await decision on future use.
o s t W a r N o t e s
PATHFINDER was selected for use a bombing target in November 1946 and prepared
for this at Portsmouth. Trials
were carried out during 1947-48 and ship was placed on Disposal List when completed.
Sold to BISCO in 1948 She
was towed to Milford Haven and arriving on 17th November that year for
demolition by Howells. See BRITISH DESTROYERS
by E March for details. More information is included in a book on “O and P
Class Destroyers" by N J Dyer,
but some details are at variance with official records and with other sources.
CONVOY ESCORT MOVEMENTS of
by Don Kindell
These convoy lists have not been cross-checked
with the text above
Date convoy sailed
Joined convoy as escort
Date convoy arrived
(Note on Convoys)