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SERVICE HISTORIES of ROYAL NAVY WARSHIPS in WORLD WAR 2 by Lt Cdr Geoffrey B Mason RN (Rtd) (c) 2005

 

HMS HATHERLEIGH/Greek HHelMS KANARIS (L 53) - Type III, Hunt-class Escort Destroyer including Convoy Escort Movements

HMS Limbourne, Type III sister-ship (Navy Photos, click to enlarge)

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Type III HUNT Class Escort Destroyer ordered from Swan Hunter at Newcastle  on  23rd August 1940 and laid down on 12th December 1940 as Job Number J4275. She was launched as HMS HATHERLEIGH on 18th December 1941 as the 1st RN ship to bear this name, that of a Devonshire fox-hunt. The ship was transferred to the Royal Hellenic Navy on 24th March 1942 and renamed HHelMS KANARIS. Build was completed on 10th August 1942.

 

B a t t l e   H o n o u r s

No British Battle Honours were awarded as

         the ship served in an allied Navy

 

Ship Badge

None is included in the Official List of Heraldic Crests for RN warships

as she was never in commission with the Royal Navy.

 

 

D e t a i l s   o f   W a r   S e r v i c e   a s   H  H e l  M  S   K A N A R I A S

 

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

 

  

1 9 4 2

 

March

 

Transferred to Royal Hellenic Navy whilst fitting out.

 

April to June

 

Fitting-out in continuation.

 

July

 

Contractors trials.

 

August

 

Commissioned for service as HHelMS KANARIS.

 

10th - Build completion and commenced Acceptance trials.

 

Passage to Scapa Flow on completion of trials and storing.

 

September

 

Worked-up for operational service in Royal Navy with ships of Home Fleet at Scapa Flow

 

1st - Escorted HHelMS ADRIAS (Ex HMS BORDER) to Tyne for repair.

 

2nd - Return passage to Scapa Flow as escort for HM Aircraft Carrier FURIOUS with HM Escort Destroyer BLEAN

 

Resumed work-up on arrival. On completion took passage to join escort for military Convoy WS23 in Clyde as part of Ocean Escort during passage to Durban

 

30th - Arrived in Clyde and joined HM Cruisers DESPATCH, DURBAN, HM Armed Merchant Cruiser QUEEN of BERMUDA, HM Escort Destroyer PUCKERIDGE, HM Destroyers ANTELOPE and VELOX for Ocean Escort. (Note: WS23 comprised eight troopships and a Local Escort of three destroyers was provided for passage in NW Approaches.)

 

October

 

4th - Joined WS23 after delayed departure.

 

15th - Detached from WS23 before arrival at Freetown and made independent passage.

 

16th - At Freetown.

 

20th - Sailed from Freetown with HMS DURBAN, HM Armed Merchant Cruiser CARTHAGE as Ocean Escort during passage to Durban. (Note: Local Escort was provided for initial stage of passage from Freetown.)

 

November

 

5th - Detached from WS23 at Durban.

 

Took independent passage to Alexandria from Durban with call at Aden. Joined HHelMS PINDOS for Fleet duties on arrival in Alexandria.

 

December

 

Deployed at Alexandria.

 

 

1 9 4 3

 

January to April 

 

Deployed for escort of convoys in eastern Mediterranean (Note: Convoys were no long proceeding direct to Malta from Alexandria as ships bound for Malta joined coastal convoys for Benghazi and then detached for Malta. Coastal convoys were escorted from ships based at Alexandria and later by ships from Malta.)

 

May

 

Deployed for support of military operations during advance of Eighth Army into Tunisia, Joined 5th Destroyer Flotilla to intercept craft evacuating personnel from Cape Bon area (Operation RETRIBUTION For details see ENGAGE THE ENEMY MORE CLOSELY by C Barnett and Naval Staff History).

 

June

 

Deployed in Malta for convoy defence. Nominated for support of planned allied landings in Sicily. (Operation HUSKY For details see BRITISH INVASION FLEETS by J de Winser, Naval Staff History and THE BATTLE FOR THE MEDITERRANEAN by D Macintyre.)

 

July

 

Deployed with Greek Destroyers PINDOS, ADRIAS, MIAOULIS, THEMISTOCLES and Mediterranean Fleet Destroyers for escort of Assault Convoys to British landing areas in Sicily.

 

9th - Present at initial landings and provided naval gunfire support.

 

Deployed for escort of Build-up phase convoys.

 

12th - Deployed with HM Destroyers ESKIMO and EXMOOR in an attempt to enter harbour at Augusta which failed after coming under fire from shore battery.

 

August to December  

 

Resumed Mediterranean convoy defence duties on release from HUSKY (Note: Did not take part in landings at Salerno in September 1943 (Operation AVALANCHE), or Operation ACCOLADE for defence of military forces in Leros and Cos).

 

It is not known to what extent this ship was involved in the indiscipline amongst Greek naval personnel at Alexandria during this period.

 

 

1 9 4 4

 

January to February

 

Convoy defence in continuation.

 

March

 

19th - Sustained serious structural damage in collision with HM Cruiser HAWKINS during passage in Red Sea.

 

25th - Taken in hand for repair at Massawa.

 

April to July

 

Under repair

 

August

 

Resumed Mediterranean Fleet service with 5th Destroyer Flotilla at Alexandria

 

September

 

Nominated for service in British Aegean Force for support of re-occupation of islands in Aegean with Greek destroyers THEMISTOCLES. PINDOS, MIAOULIS and KRITI. (Operation MANNA) (Note: This included provision of naval gunfire support, landing of troops and interception of craft attempting to carry out evacuation of German garrisons.)

 

October to November

 

Deployed in Aegean for support of MANNA in continuation.

 

December

 

Deployed in support operations in Greek coastal waters and convoy defence. Present at re-occupation of Piraeus.

 

 

1 9 4 5

 

January to May

 

Deployed with other Greek Navy destroyers for support of military operations in Greece and for convoy defence.

 

June to August

 

Deployed in for operations in Greek coastal waters as required by Greek authorities.

 

 

P o s t   W a r   N o t e s

 

HHelMS KANARIS remained in Greek naval service after VJ Day. In 1959 the ship was returned to the Royal Navy. Placed on the Disposal List she was sold for demolition to a Greek shipbreaker and arrived in tow at a local shipbreaking yard in 1960.

 


 

Addendum

 

CONVOY ESCORT MOVEMENTS of HM Hellenic Ship KANARIS

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

 

 

 

 

 

13/11/42

13/11/42

CM 035

21/11/42

23/11/42

22/12/42

22/12/42

PA 016

unknown

unknown

21/01/43

21/01/43

MH 003/M

26/01/43

26/01/43

27/01/43

27/01/43

ME 016

01/02/43

01/02/43

29/04/43

29/04/43

MW 027

unknown

04/05/43

31/05/43

08/06/43

KMS 015

14/06/43

14/06/43

18/06/43

18/06/43

XTG 002

24/06/43

29/06/43

05/07/43

05/07/43

MWF 036

10/07/43

10/07/43

13/07/43

13/07/43

MEF 037

15/07/43

17/07/43

20/07/43

20/07/43

MWF 038

24/07/43

24/07/43

24/07/43

24/07/43

MEF 038

28/07/43

28/07/43

10/08/43

10/08/43

GUS 012

20/08/43

06/09/43

06/08/43

30/08/43

UGS 014

01/09/43

02/09/43

30/08/43

30/08/43

GUS 014

01/09/43

26/09/43

17/09/43

18/09/43

MKF 024

23/09/43

07/10/43

15/09/43

25/09/43

KMF 024

29/09/43

29/09/43

17/10/43

23/10/43

MKF 025

26/10/43

04/11/43

27/10/43

06/11/43

KMF 025A

11/11/43

11/11/43

17/11/43

17/11/43

MKF 026

30/11/43

09/12/43

03/01/44

03/01/44

XIF 007

08/01/44

08/01/44

20/01/44

20/01/44

XIF 008

25/01/44

25/01/44

20/01/44

28/01/44

MKF 028

29/01/44

07/02/44

07/02/44

07/02/44

SNF 014

11/02/44

11/02/44

21/02/44

21/02/44

SNF 015

24/02/44

24/02/44

14/02/44

26/02/44

GUS 031

26/02/44

18/03/44

21/02/44

27/02/44

KMF 029

02/03/44

05/03/44

18/02/44

01/03/44

UGS 033A

03/03/44

29/02/44

11/03/44

12/03/44

XIF 011

15/03/44

16/03/44

16/03/44

16/03/44

IXF 011

19/03/44

21/03/44

03/09/44

03/09/44

MKF 034

07/09/44

14/09/44

 

 

 

 

 

(Note on Convoys)

 

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revised 10/6/11
further editing is required