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SERVICE HISTORIES of ROYAL NAVY WARSHIPS in WORLD WAR 2
by Lt Cdr Geoffrey B Mason RN (Rtd) (c) 2004

 

HMS SOUTHDOWN (L 25) - Type I, Hunt-class Escort Destroyer
including Convoy Escort Movements

HMS Southdown (Photo Ships, click to enlarge)

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Type I HUNT Class Escort Destroyer ordered from J S Write, Cowes IoW on 11th April 1939 under the 1939 Build Programme. The ship was laid down as Job No J6602 on 22nd August 1939 and  launched on 5th July 19% as the 2nd RN warship to carry the name, that of a fox-hunt in Sussex.  It had previously been used for a WW1 minesweeper sold in 1926. Build was completed on 8th November 1940. She was later adopted by the civil community of Woking, Surrey after a successful WARSHIP WEEK National Savings campaign in February 1942. Unlike many of her sister ships all her war service was spent in Home waters and was without particular distinction.

 

B a t t l e   H o n o u r s

 

NORTH SEA 1941-45 - NORMANDY 1944

 

H e r a l d i c   D a t a

Badge: On a Field: Red, in front of two bugle horns in saltire Gold

a horseshoe inverted white.

 

 

D e t a i l s   o f   W a r   S e r v i c e

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

 

1 9 4 0

 

November           Contractor's trials and commissioned for service in 16th Destroyer Flotilla.

             8th          Build completion and commenced Acceptance Trials.

                             Carried out first sea trial on newly developed Fiore-control Radar Type 285

                             Passage to Scapa Flow on completion of trials and storing.

            17th         Arrived at Scapa Flow to work-up for operational service with ships of  Home Fleet.

 

December           Joined 16th Destroyer Flotilla at Sheerness for convoy defence and patrol duties in

                            in English Channel and North Sea.

 

1 9 4 1

 

January               Deployed with Flotilla for convoy defence and interception of E-Boats in conjunction with

to.                        Light Coastal Forces operations.

April                    (For details of naval activities in North Sea see THREE CORVETTES by N Monsarrat and

                            THE BATTLE OF THE EAST COAST by J P Foynes.)

 

May

             4th         Damaged in action against E-Boats

.                           Steering motor disabled and some flooding aft.

             6th         Under repair.

                            Resumed Flotilla duties on completion of repair.

 

June                    Convoy escort and patrol in continuation.

to

August

 

September

            17th        Damaged in collision with HM Corvette SHEARWATER off Sheringham, Norfolk.

                            Under repair.

 

October               Resumed Flotilla duties on completion of repair.

to

December

 

1 9 4 2

 

January               Deployed with Flotilla for convoy escort and interception patrol in North Sea and Channel against

to                        E-Boat incursions.

December           (See HOLD THE NARROW SEA by P Smith and THE BATTLE OF THE NARROW SEAS by

                            P. Scott for further details of E-Boat attacks on East coast convoys).

 

1 9 4 3

 

January               Flotilla duties in continuation.

to

February

 

March

             4th         In action with HM Destroyer WINDSOR and HM Corvette SHELDRAKE against E-Boats off

                            Lowestoft.

 

April                   Convoy defence and patrol in continuation.

to

December

 

1 9 4 4

 

January               Flotilla deployment in North Sea and English Channel in continuation.

 

February

           22nd         In action off Smith's Knoll with HM Destroyer GARTH in defence of convoy against E-Boat

                            attacks.

                            (Note: Two E-Boats collided and were abandoned by crews. See references.)

 

March                  Convoy defence and patrol in continuation.

 

April

            5th           Slightly damaged by collision with Jetty at Parkestone Quay.

           13th          In action with E-Boats and received slight damage.

           15th          Under repair.

           21st          On completion of repair resumed duties with Flotilla.

 

May                    Nominated for support of allied landings in Normandy (Operation NEPTUNE).

                            Allocated to 102nd Escort Group for convoy escort from Nore to beachhead area.

                            (For details of naval activities prior to and during the landings see OPERATION NEPTUNE by

                            K Edwards, LANDINGS IN NORMANDY June 1944 (HMSO) and D DAY SHIPS by J de

                            Winser for details of all ships involved.).

 

June                     Joined HM Destroyer MACKAY, HM Corvettes POTENTILLA and VERVAIN to form Escort

                            Group.

                            (Note: HM Corvettes POPPY and STATICE were also attached for first trip.)

            4th           Operation delayed for 24 hours.

            7th           Sailed as escort for Follow-up Convoy ETM2 with Group from Thames estuary.

                            (Note: Convoy comprised 25 MT ships and four other mercantiles taking Pre-Loaded British

                                        Build-up Division to assault area.

                            Took passage to Solent.

            8th           Escorted convoy through swept channel to Eastern Task Force Area,

            9th           Returned to Nore for further escort duty

           to              Deployed with 102nd Escort Group for escort of Daily Cycle of convoys.

           24th          Resumed convoy defence and patrol duties with Flotilla on released from NEPTUNE.

                             (Note: HMS POPPY and HMS STATICE had left Group).

 

August                 Flotilla deployment in North Sea and Channel for convoy defence and patrol in continuation.

to

December

 

1 9 4 5

 

January                 North Sea convoy defence and interception of enemy minelaying by submarine and by E-Boats i

to                          in Thames estuary and convoy routes to continent.

April

 

May

           14th           Deployed with HM Destroyer BROCKLESBY in support of allied occupation of Cuxhaven

 

June                      Deployed in Nore Command for support of military operations in NW Europe.

to

August

 

P o s t   W a r   N o t e s

 

HMS SOUTHDOWN was converted for use as an air target ship at Rosyth in September 1945 and carried out that role after her armament had been removed. She was withdrawn from service in April 1946. The ship Paid-off and reduced to Reserve status at Portsmouth during May that year. The ship remained in the Reserve Fleet until 1955 and was placed on the Disposal List . Sold to BISCO for demolition by T W Ward at Barrow in 1956 she arrived at the breakerís yard in tow on 1st December 1956.

 


 

Addendum

 

CONVOY ESCORT MOVEMENTS of HMS SOUTHDOWN

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

         

29/01/41

29/01/41

FN 0395

31/01/41

31/01/41

22/12/42

22/12/42

CW 143

23/12/42

23/12/42

23/12/42

23/12/42

CE 141

24/12/42

24/12/42

22/02/43

22/02/43

CW 158

23/02/43

23/02/43

23/02/43

23/02/43

CE 156

24/02/43

24/02/43

01/07/43

01/07/43

CW 190

02/07/43

02/07/43

02/07/43

02/07/43

CE 188

03/07/43

03/07/43

31/08/43

31/08/43

CW 205

01/09/43

01/09/43

01/09/43

01/09/43

CE 203

02/09/43

02/09/43

11/09/43

11/09/43

CE 206

12/09/43

12/09/43

07/02/44

07/02/44

CW 245

08/02/44

08/02/44

11/04/44

11/04/44

CW 261

12/04/44

12/04/44

12/04/44

12/04/44

CE 259

13/04/44

13/04/44

06/05/44

06/05/44

CW 267

07/05/44

07/05/44

07/05/44

07/05/44

CE 265

08/05/44

08/05/44

31/05/44

31/05/44

CW 273

01/06/44

01/06/44

07/06/44

07/06/44

ETM 002

08/06/44

08/06/44

17/06/44

17/06/44

ETM 012

18/06/44

18/06/44

19/06/44

19/06/44

FTM 012

20/06/44

20/06/44

25/06/44

25/06/44

ETM 017

26/06/44

26/06/44

27/06/44

27/06/44

FTM 020

28/06/44

28/06/44

30/06/44

30/06/44

ETM 022

01/07/44

01/07/44

05/07/44

05/07/44

ETM 027

06/07/44

06/07/44

15/07/44

15/07/44

ETM 037

16/07/44

16/07/44

17/07/44

17/07/44

FTM 040

18/07/44

18/07/44

20/07/44

20/07/44

ETM 042

21/07/44

21/07/44

26/07/44

26/07/44

ETC 049

27/07/44

27/07/44

28/07/44

28/07/44

FTC 050

29/07/44

29/07/44

06/08/44

06/08/44

ETM 057

07/08/44

07/08/44

 

 

 

 

 

(Note on Convoys)

 

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revised 13/8/11
further editing and formatting is required