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by Lt Cdr Geoffrey B Mason RN (Rtd) (c) 2006


HMS THAMES (12 F) - Thames-class Submarine


Edited by Gordon Smith, Naval-History.Net

HM S/M Thames (Navy Photos, click to enlarge) return to Contents List 

THAMES-Class submarine ordered from Vickers-Armstrong at Barrow in Furness on 1st September 1930 and laid down on 6th January 1931. This submarine was launched on 26th January 1932 and was  the first submarine to carry the name. Since this name was introduced in 1758 for a 5th Rate it had been previously used for five surface warships. The last being an 1885 Cruiser renamed GENERAL BOTHA in 1920 when sold to South Africa. for training duties. Build was completed on 14th September 1932. In November 1938 she was serving with her two sister submarines with the 1st Submarine Flotilla in Malta.


B a t t l e   H o n o u r s




H e r a l d i c   D a t a

Badge: On a Field Blue, a profile head symbolic of Thames, Gold.


M o t t o

Nametsi: 'Notwithstanding'


S u m m a r y   o f   W a r   S e r v i c e


Deployed for patrol duties in the North Sea after the outbreak of WW2 she had a brief career. Whilst in patrol off Norway and based at Dundee she was sunk by a mine on 3rd August 1940.


1 9 3 9


August                  Transferred to 2nd Submarine Flotilla, Home Fleet.


September             Deployed for interception of enemy warships and mercantiles on passage in North Sea

                               based at Dundee with HM Submarines OBERON, TRITON , TRIUMPH and THISTLE.


October                  Dundee deployment in continuation.

to                            Nominated for refit

December              Taken in hand for refit.


1 9 4 0


January                  Under refit.




June                        On completion of post refit trials took passage to Dundee to resume Flotilla duties


July                         Deployed at Dundee

                22nd       Sailed from Dundee for interception patrol

                25th        Patrol position changed and took passage to new area

                26th        Sailed from patrol area to return to Dundee

                                Commanding Officer: Lieutenant Cdr W Dunkerley RN


August                  On return passage to Dundee.

                3rd          Sunk by mine near position.

                                (Special Note: The circumstances of the loss and whether she was involved in an attacks

                                on one of  the escorts of GNEISENAU are not certain but the post war analysis suggests 

                                that this submarine sank entering a German minefield and subsequently detonating a

                                German mine. See ABOVE US THE WAVES by AS Evans.)


 P o s t   W a r   N o t e s


This name was reintroduced after 1945 when borne by several Coastal Minesweepers which were renamed when serving as a Tender attached to the London Division of the RNVR for sea training.


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revised 25/11/10
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