SAVAGE or S-Class Fleet Destroyer ordered
from J S White, Cowes, IoW in January 1941 with
the 5th Emergency Flotilla and
laid down on 12th June 1941.
The ship was launched on
15th June 1943 as the 28th RN warship to carry
name, introduced in 1549 and
last used for a Flotilla Leader sold in 1921.
Completion was delayed until 6th
December 1943 due to design and production difficulties which
affected delivery of the guns and the
units. On completion the
ship worked up at Scapa Flow prior to joining
the 23rd Destroyer Flotilla, Home
Fleet. In March 1942 after a successful WARSHIP
WEEK National Savings campaign
she was adopted by the civil community of
a t t l e H o n o u r s
DOVER PATROL 1915-18 -
BELGIAN COAST 1917-18 -
- ARCTIC 1944
- NORMANDY 1944
e r a l d i c D a t a
On a Field White. a swift volant Proper.
e t a i l s o f W a
S e r v i c e
(for more ship
Naval History Homepage
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9 4 3
Contractor's Trials and commissioning.
Build completion and commenced Acceptance Trials
9 4 4
On completion of trials and storing took passage
to Scapa Flow.
Deployed for work-up with ships of Home Fleet.
Joined escort of return Russian Convoy RA56 from
Kola Inlet with HM Destroyers
OBEDIENT and VERULAM during passage.
(Note: These destroyers were sent to replace HM
Destroyer HARDY which had been sunk
and HM Destroyer OBDURATE which had been damaged
during escort of the earlier
outward Convoy JW56A from Loch Ewe to Kola
Detached from escort with same ships and
returned to Scapa Flow.
screen for HM Cruiser BLACK PRINCE with HM
MILNE, OBEDIENT, OFFA, ONSLAUGHT,
ORIBI, SERAPIS, VERULAM and
VIGILANT as escort for
outward Russian Convoy JW57
to Kola Inlet.
Detached from JW57 on arrival at Kola Inlet.
Joined return Russian Convoy RA57 as screen for
HMS BLACK PRINCE with the same
destroyers except HMS MAHRATTA which had been
sunk by U990 on outward passage.
Under attack by U739 which fired an acoustic
torpedo which failed to hit the ship.
Detached from RA57 with some of escort.
(For details of all Russian Convoy operations
see ARCTIC CONVOYS by R. Woodhead
THE RUSSIAN CONVOYS by B Schoefield, CONVOYS TO
RUSSIA by RA Ruegg and
CONVOY! by P Kemp.)
Resumed Home Fleet duties with Flotilla.
Deployed with Flotilla in Home Fleet.
Nominated for duty with Flotilla in support of
(Operation NEPTUNE - For details of naval
activities prior to and during this
NORMANDY LANDINGS JUNE 1944 (HMSO), OPERATION
NEPTUNE by K.
and D-DAY SHIPS by J de Winser.)
Allocated to Force S with HM Destroyers
IMPULSIVE, KELVIN, SAUMAREZ, SAVAGE,
SCORPION, SCOURGE, SERAPIS and Norwegian STORD
for gunfire support and patrol
Target allocated in Pre-Arranged fire plan was
Franceville defences in
Took part in preparatory exercises with Home
Passage to Clyde.
Deployed with HMS SAUMAREZ and Norwegian
destroyer STORD as escort for ships of
Bombarding Force D to Solent area.
(Note: These were HM Battleship WARSPITE, HM
Battleship RAMILLIES and HM
Operation delayed by 24 hours.
Passage through swept channel to beachhead as
escort for Bombarding Force D.
Took up assigned bombardment position before
assault on SWORD Beach to provide gunfire
support in accordance with Fire Plan.
On completion of initial bombardment supported
assault troops as required.
Rescued survivors from Norwegian destroyer HM
Nor. Ship SVENNER.
(Note: Ex HM Destroyer SHARK) sunk by torpedo
from E-Boat off SWORD Beach
during landings in Normandy (Operation NEPTUNE).
Deployed in Eastern Task Force area for gunfire
support and for patrol off the beachheads to
prevent attacks by enemy surface craft and
submarines on convoys.
Replenished at Portsmouth as required.
Detonated mine off SWORD beachhead and sank
after breaking in two.
There were 53 casualties.
ESCORT MOVEMENTS of HMS SWIFT
convoy lists have not been cross-checked with
the text above
convoy as escort
FINAL MOMENTS OF HMS SWIFT
thanks to Colin Henderson
The photographs of
the sinking HMS SWIFT were taken by Lieutenant
Peter Musgrave of LCI(S).518 who was on duty off
from D-Day until September 1944.
You can see G.46 on the stern. Peter also took
photos on June 5th of HMS MAURITIUS
and HMS MALAYA (on which he served) and also H
Norwegian MS STORD which was the
escort ship to the Commando LCI(S) flotillas. He
would have taken more photos
of the D-day landings but at 0910 just as he was
about to take a shot, a shell
killed all his ramp party and about six
commandos. Sub Lieut
Peter Musgrave, as he was then,
was in charge of the radar on
craft LCI(S).518 and also the ramp party. The CO
of 518 was Lieutenant Commander
Jack Deslandes who
was also flotilla leader for his
ten LCI(s) carrying 45 RM Commando and 3
Commando. Peter Musgrave was earlier
an Able Seaman on HMS Malaya. I have photos of
him as an Able Seaman and as a