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SERVICE HISTORIES of ROYAL NAVY WARSHIPS in WORLD WAR 2
by Lt Cdr Geoffrey B Mason RN (Rtd) (c) 1996

HMS BARLE (K 298) - River-class Frigate including Convoy Escort Movements

HMS Helford, sister-ship  (Navy Photos/Bob Hanley, click to enlarge) return to Contents List   
 

RIVER-Class Frigate ordered by the US Navy on 30th September 1941 was under the UK/US Lend/Lease Programme for transfer tothe Royal Navy. The ship was laid down on 6th October 1941 from Canadian Vickers at Montreal, Canada. The ship was designated PG103 US Navy. She waslaunched on 26th September 1942 and build was completed on 30th April 1943. It is not known whether she was launched as HMS BARLE, but was she transferred tothe Royal Navy on completion. One other RN snip had borne the name during WW1 and been hired for minesweeping duties. This ship was fitted with radar Type271 on build to provide surface warning, (See RADAR AT SEA by D Howse for details of the development and use of radar by RN). After a successful WARSHIP WEEK National Savings campaign in 1942 thisship had been adopted by the civil community of Whitefield, Lancashire.

 

B a t t l e   H o n o u r s

 

ATLANTIC  1943

 

H e r a l d i c   D a t a

No details are given in the official Record of Heraldic Crests,

but this is not uncommon for ships built during WW2 and having

names not previously used by major warships.

 

 

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 3

 

April                       Contractor's trials and commissioning.

                30th        Build completion and commenced Acceptance Trials.

 

May                        Transferred to RN as HMS BARLE.

                                On completion of trials and initial storing took passage to UK.

 

June                        Arrived in UK and after storing for RN operational service took passage to

                                Tobermory.

                                Nominated for service in Western Approaches Command for Atlantic convoy

                                defence.

 

July                         On completion of work-up for operational service joined 5th Escort Group.

 

August                  Nominated for escort of military convoy.

                                For details of Atlantic convoy defence operations see THE BATTLE OF THE

                                ATLANTIC by D. Macintyre, U-BOAT WAR IN THE ATLANTIC (HMSO)

                                and HITLERíS U-BOAT WAR by C. Blair

                17th        Joined HM Escort Carrier HUNTER, HM Cruiser SHROPSHIRE, HM

                                Destroyer WRESTLER, HM Sloops CHANTICLEER, WESTON, HM

                                Indian Sloop NARBADA, HM Cutter TOTLAND, HM Frigates ETTRICK

                                and USK as Ocean Escort for combined military convoy WS33 to Middle East

                                KMF22 to Mediterranean during passage to Gibraltar.

                24th        Detached from convoy on arrival after uninterrupted passage.

                28th        Return passage to UK as escort for inward convoy.

 

September             Atlantic convoy defence in continuation.

 

October                  Transferred to 41st Escort Group and joined HM Sloops BIDEFORD

                                FLEETWOOD, HM Cutter BANFF, HM Frigate ODZANI, HM Corvettes

                                AUBRETIA, CYCLAMEN and STONECROP for escort of convoys to

                                Gibraltar.

                                (Note: For details of weapons and tactics used in convoy defence see SEEK

                                AND STRIKE by W Hackmann and above references.)

                                Part of escort for combined convoy OS56 to Sierra Leone and KMS29 to

                                Gibraltar.

 

November              Atlantic convoy defence with Group in continuation.

to

December

 

1 9 4 4

 

January                  Atlantic convoy defence with Group in continuation.

to

September

 

October                  Nominated for duty in Far East and prepared for foreign service.

to

November

 

December              Passage to Australia for service with British Pacific Fleet.

 

1 9 4 5

 

 

January                  On arrival at Sydney allocated for duty in Task Force 112 Fleet Train.

 

February                Prepared for service in British Pacific Fleet with Fleet Train.

                                (Note: Joined HM Sloops CRANE, REDPOLE, WOODCOCK, WHIMBREL,

                                PHEASANT, HM Frigates HELFORD and PARRET in Force 112.)

 

March                    Deployed with Fleet Train

                                (Note: One source suggests ship was used in support of operations in SW

                                Pacific by British Pacific Fleet ships of Task Force 57, and based at

                                Manus, the British Forward base in the Admiralty islands.

                                This is not confirmed in WAR IN THE PACIFIC (HMSO) or THE

                                FORGOTTEN FLEET by J Winton. (Operation ICEBERG ONE).

 

April                       British Pacific Fleet deployment in continuation.

to                            (Note: Deployment in support of ICEBERG TWO to be confirmed.)

May

 

June                        Nominated for service in Logistics Support Group of TF 112 in support of

                                attacks on Japanese mainland by BPF ships attached to US Third Fleet as Task

                                Force 37.

                                See above references and OPERATION PACIFIC by E Gray.)

                                Passage to Manus with ships of Fleet Train

 

July                         Passage to operational area with Logistics Group for the defence of Fleet Train

                                during replenishment of ships of Task Force 37.

                16th        Task Force 37 ships commenced operations with US Fleet.

                                See above references.

                                (Note: Fleet tankers left operational area to refuel and would be provided

                                with an escort.

 

August                  Fleet Train duty in continuation.

                6th          Provided air defence to Logistics Group during replenishment.

                                (Note: Other ships in Logistics Group included four tankers, two Supply

                                Ships, HM Escort Carriers ARBITER, CHASER and RULER, HM

                                Destroyers NORMAN, NIZAM, HM Sloops PHEASANT, CRANE,

                                HM Australian Minesweepers BURNIE and BALLARAT, and

                                Hospital Ship TJITYJALENGA.)

                11th        Provided defence to Logistics Group during replenishment.

                                (Note: Other ships in Logistics Group included five tankers, a Supply Ship, HMS

                                RULER, HMS PHEASANT, HM Frigate USK, HMAS BURNIE, HMAS

                                BALLARAT, HMAS GERALDTON, HMAS IPSWICH.

                                A Hospital Ship also with Logistics Unit.)

                12th        Ships of British Pacific Fleet other than those transferred to Token Force as Task

                                Group 38.5, were withdrawn from operations.

                                See above references.

                                Passage to Manus with ships of Logistics Group.

  

P o s t   W a r   N o t e s

 

HMS BARLE returned to UK later in 1945 and was Paid-off from RN service. The ship, mannedby a steaming crew, sailed for the USA and was handed back the US Navy on 27th February 1946.  She was later sold fordemolition.

 


 

Addendum

 

CONVOY ESCORT MOVEMENTS of HMS BARLE

by Don Kindell

 

This convoy list has not been cross-checked with the text above

 

 

 

 

 

Date convoy sailed

Joined convoy as escort

Convoy No.

Left convoy

Date convoy arrived

 

 

 

 

 

15/06/43

18/06/43

HX 244

29/06/43

30/06/43

19/08/43

01/09/43

MKF 022

09/09/43

09/09/43

17/09/43

17/09/43

OS 055KM

28/09/43

28/09/43

28/09/43

28/09/43

KMS 027G

29/09/43

29/09/43

29/09/43

29/09/43

KMS 027

05/10/43

11/10/43

14/10/43

20/10/43

MKS 028

23/10/43

23/10/43

23/10/43

23/10/43

MKS 028G

24/10/43

24/10/43

24/10/43

24/10/43

SL 138MK

05/11/43

05/11/43

01/11/43

01/11/43

KMS 030

11/11/43

11/11/43

17/11/43

17/11/43

GUS 022

29/11/43

17/12/43

14/11/43

03/12/43

UGS 024

12/12/43

12/12/43

21/12/43

22/12/43

MKS 035

01/01/44

01/01/44

09/01/44

09/01/44

KMS 037

20/01/44

20/01/44

04/02/44

04/02/44

GUS 030

15/02/44

08/03/44

25/01/44

15/02/44

UGS 031

21/02/44

21/02/44

01/03/44

01/03/44

MKS 042

13/03/44

13/03/44

17/03/44

17/03/44

KMS 044

26/03/44

27/03/44

04/04/44

04/04/44

GUS 036

11/04/44

11/04/44

24/03/44

15/04/44

UGS 037

18/04/44

19/04/44

29/04/44

30/04/44

MKS 048

10/05/44

10/05/44

15/05/44

15/05/44

KMS 050

25/05/44

25/05/44

03/06/44

03/06/44

GUS 042

11/06/44

29/06/44

28/06/44

29/06/44

MKS 054

10/07/44

10/07/44

13/07/44

13/07/44

KMS 056

22/07/44

23/07/44

27/08/44

27/08/44

MKS 060

07/09/44

07/09/44

12/09/44

12/09/44

KMS 062

22/09/44

22/09/44

02/10/44

03/10/44

GUS 054

08/10/44

28/10/44

22/09/44

13/10/44

UGS 055

18/10/44

17/10/44

26/10/44

26/10/44

MKS 066

06/11/44

06/11/44

21/03/45

29/03/45

SU 001/2

10/05/45

13/04/45

 

 

 

 

 

(Note on Convoys)

 

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revised 30/5/11
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