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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 FISHGUARD (Y 59) - ex-US Coast Guard Cutter including Convoy Escort Movements

Edited by Gordon Smith, Naval-History.Net

HMS Fishguard (Navy Photos, click to enlarge) return to Contents List   
 

US Coastguard Cutter TAHOE built by Bethelehem Shipbuilders, Quincy, Mass. and launched on 12th July 1928. Transferred to the Royal Navy in April 1941 under US/UK Lease-Lend Agreement and given the name of a British Coastguard Station following the practice adopted for all transfers of this type of ship, Renamed HMS FISHGUARD she was the first RN ship to carry the name. This record has been extensively improved by details of movements provided by James A Byrne of Shadwell, Leeds who served on board between April 1942 and July 1945. This invaluable help is acknowledged with thanks.

 

    
Original USCGC Tahoe before the war (US Coast Guard)

 

B a t t l e†† H o n o u r s

 

ATLANTIC 1941-43†- SICILY 1943

 

 

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 1

 

April

                30th        Commissioned as HMS FISHGUARD at New York.

                                (Note: Shipís company included several from HM Battleship MALAYA which was being

                                repaired in Brooklyn Navy Yard.)

 

May

                7th          Took passage to UK as part of escort for Convoy HX125 with HM Cutters BANFF and

                                CULVER

                22nd       Arrived in Clyde.

 

June                        Deployed in Hone waters pending modifications to suit RN use.

 

July

                12th        Took passage from Londonderry to Thames Estuary.

                19th        Taken in hand for refit in commercial shipyard at Poplar, London.

 

August                  Nominated for service in Western Approaches Command.

                8th          Took passage from Sheerness after post refit trials.

                13th        Sailed from Greenock to Londonderry for service with 44th Escort Group.

                                Deployed for defence of convoys to and from West Africa.

                15th        Part of escort for Convoy 0S3 to Bathurst.

                29th        Arrived at Bathurst.

 

September

                8th          Sailed from Bathurst as part of escort for return Convoy SL86.

                24th        Detached from Convoy SL86 and returned to Londonderry.

 

October

                13th        Joined escort for Convoy OS9 to Bathurst.

 

November

                3rd          Arrived at Bathurst.

                9th          Sailed from Bathurst with escort for return Convoy SL92.

                30th        Arrived at Belfast after detaching from SL92.

 

December

                2nd         Talk in hand for repair at Belfast.

                13th        Took passage to Londonderry on completion to resume convoy defence duties.

                14th        Joined escort for Convoy 0S14 to Bathurst with HMS BANFF.

 

1 9 4 2

 

January

                2nd         Arrived at Bathurst with OS14.

                6th          Sailed from Bathurst with escort for return Convoy SL97.

                24th        Arrived at Belfast after detaching from SL97-

                                (Note: HF D/F Outfit FH3 was installed during period.)

                                For details of function of Direction Finding Outfits see SEEK AND STRIKE

                                by W Hackmann and HITLERíS U-BOAT WAR by C Blair.)

 

February

                7th          On completion of shipyard work took passage to Clyde for calibration of D/F equipment.

                14th        Resumed convoy defence duties on completion of calibration.

                                Joined HMS BANFF in escort for Convoy 0819 en passage to Bathurst.

 

March

                1st           Detached from OS19 on arrival at Bathurst.

                6th          Joined escort for return Convoy SL102 and took passage from Bathurst.

                16th        Under repair In Azores for 24 hours.

                17th        Passage to rejoin SL102.

                25th        Returned to Londonderry after arrival of SL102 in Clyde.

 

April

                3rd          Escorted outward Convoy OS24 to Freetown.

                22nd       Detached from 0S24 on arrival.

                26th        Sailed from Freetown in escort for return Convoy SL108.

 

May

                17th        At Liverpool after detaching from SL108.

                30th        Resumed convoy defence duties and took passage to Moville.

 

June

                2nd         Joined escort for Convoy OS30 for passage to Freetown.

                19th        Detached from OS30 on arrival at Freetown.

                25th        Joined HMS BANFF for escort of return Convoy SL114 to UK..

 

July

                15th        Detached from SL114 on arrival and returned to Londonderry.

 

August

                1st           Joined Convoy OS36 at Moville as escort for passage to Freetown with HMS BANFF.

                18th        Detached from OS36 on arrival at Freetown.

                24th        Joined return Convoy SL120 as escort for passage to Clyde.

 

September             Nominated for refit at Falmouth on return to UK.

                14th        Detached on arrival and returned to Londonderry.

                17th        Passage to Plymouth.

                19th        Taken in hand for refit at Falmouth.

 

October                  Under refit

                                (Nominated for defence of military convoys to Gibraltar.

                                (Note: Type 271 Surface warning radar may have been fitted.

                                See RADAR AT SEA by D Howse for details of development and use of radar

                                in the Royal Navy.)

 

November

                5th          On completion of Post Refit trials took passage to Plymouth.

                                (Note: US 5in mounting replaced by RN 4in type and improved AA Weapons.)

                7th          Passage to Londonderry.

                9th          Deployed in NW Approaches after arrival at Moville.

                18th        At Londonderry.

 

December

                28th        Joined military convoy KMF6 with HMS BANFF as escort for passage to Algiers.

 

1 9 4 3

 

January

                3rd          Detached from KMF6 on arrival at Algiers.

                6th          Took passage from Algiers with HMS BANFF In escort for returned Convoy MKF6.

.               14th        At Londonderry after detachment from MKF6.

                26th        Joined Joint convey KMF8/US26 in Clyde with HMS BANFF and HM Frigate TEST as

                                part of Ocean Escort.

                                (Note: WS26 was on passage to Indian Ocean and Ocean Escort included two Armed

                                Merchant Cruisers and Fleet Destroyers on passage to Join Eastern Fleet.)

                29th        Remained with HMS BANFF and HMS TEST as escort for KMF8 when MS26 detached

                                from Joint convoy to take passage to Freetown.

 

February

                1st           Arrived at Algiers with KMF6

                2nd         Took passage, from Algiers as escort for return military convoy MKF8

                8th          Detached from MCF 6 on arrival in Clyde and returned to Londonderry.

                27th        Joined Joint convoy KNF10A/WB27 in Clyde with H M Sloops EGRET, ERNE,

                                HMS TEST and HM Destroyer CLARE as Ocean Escort. during Atlantic passage.

                                (Note: WS27 was on passage to Indian Ocean).

 

March

                2nd         Remained with Convoy KMF10A when WS27 detached for passage to Freetown.

                4th          At Oran.

                5th          Detached from MKF10A on arrival at Algiers.

                6th          Took Passage to Gibraltar

                8th          Joined escort for return convoy to UK at Gibraltar.

                14th        Returned to Londonderry.

                                Resumed escort duties with 44th Escort Group for mercantile convoy defence.

                27th        Part of escort for UK-Gibraltar convoy.

 

April

                12th        Detached at Gibraltar on arrival.

                14th        Part of escort for return convoy to UK.

                24th        At Liverpool.

 

May                        Nominated for defence of Atlantic convoy.

                                (Note: This was during a crucial stage of the Battle of the Atlantic when U-Boat

                                Groups were making sustained attacks. For details see THE BATTLE OF THE

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

                                and HITLERíS U-BOAT WAR by C Blair.)

                2nd         Joined escort for Convoy ON182 during passage to Newfoundland.

                                (Note: In addition to main escort , the passage of this convoy was supported by ships

                                of Support Group 4, comprising HM Escort Carrier ARCHER and 4 destroyers.

                                The convoy arrived without loss. See above reference.

                17th        Detached from ONS182 and went to St Johns.

                24th        Return passage from Newfoundland as part, of escort to routine mercantile convoy.

 

June                        Nominated service in Mediterranean for escort of convoys in support of planned allied

                                landings in Sicily (Operation HUSKY).

                4th          Returned to Londonderry

                21st         Carried out exercises in NW Approaches and Irish Sea.

                26th        Joined military Convoy KMS19 in NW Approaches as part of escort during passage

                                in Atlantic to Mediterranean.

                                (For details of HUSKY assault and support see ENGAGE THE ENEMY MORE by Bamett,

                                Naval Staff History, and for information about all mercantiles and warships involved

                                BRITISH INVASION FLEETS by J de Winser,).

 

July                         Nominated for service in Escort Group D during HUSKY

                9th          Arrived at Bone.

                10th        Deployed for escort of HUSKY convoys between Algiers, Bizerta and Bone during the

                to            Build-up Phase of HUSKY.

                25th        On release from HUSKY took passage from Algiers to Gibraltar.

                26th        Arrived at Gibraltar for escort of military convoy to USA.

                28th        Sailed from Gibraltar as part of escort for Convoy GUS10X

 

August

                14th        Arrived at Norfolk Navy Yard after release from convoy escort.

                21st         Took passage from Norfolk, Va for Argentia, Newfoundland after boiler cleaning.

.               28th        Sailed from Argentia as part of escort for Convoy UT1 during passage to UK.

                                (Note: First of a series of military convoys taking US troops to UK as part of

                                build-up for planned allied landings in Europe.)

 

September             Nominated for foreign service in Indian Ocean.

                4th          Returned to Londonderry on release from UT1.

                6th          Took passage to Cardiff for refit.

                8th          Arrived at Cardiff after call at Belfast and taken in hand for refit.

 

October                  Under refit.

                                (Note: AA armament was improved to suit needs of future deployment.)

 

November

                16th        Took passage to Milford Haven on completion of post refit trials..

                17th        Return passage to Londonderry from Milford Haven after Awning fittings Installed

                18th        At Londonderry.

 

December

                2nd         Took passage from Moville to Barry.

                                (Note: It is assumed that this was a visit to refitting port area prior to the start

                                of foreign service.

                6th          Return passage to Moville to refuel before joining escort for convoy.

                8th          Sailed from Moville as escort, for convoy to Azores.

                                (Note: Allied aircraft were based in Azores after agreement with Portugal and landings

                                to set up bases during October (Operation ALACRITY).

                19th        Passage from Azores Gibraltar

                22nd       Sailed from Gibraltar for Alexandria

.               31st         At Alexandria.

 

1 9 4 4

 

January

                10th        Sailed from Alexandria for Suez Canal transit.

                16th        Took passage through Red Sea to Aden after transit.

                20th        Arrived at Aden to commence convoy defence in Indian Ocean.

                26th        Deployed off Aden for exercises prior to first escort duty in Indian Ocean.

                27th        At Berbera.

                29th        Sailed from Aden as escort for Convoy AKD14 to Kilindini.

 

February                Joined Kilindini Escort Force.

                11th        Arrived at Kilindini and took passage to Aden.

                22nd       Arrived at Aden.

                26th        Joined Convoy AKD16 as escort to Kilindini.

 

March

                6th          Arrived at Kilindini and detached from AKD16.

                13th        Sailed from Kilindini as escort for Convoy DKA14 to Aden.

                26th        Detached from DKA14 on arrival at Aden.

 

April                       Deployed at Aden.

                4th          At Berbera.

                5th          Returned to Aden.

                6th          Sailed from Aden as escort for Convoy AKD19 to Kilindini.

                12th        Detached from AKD 19 on arrival at Kilindini.

                18th        Sailed from Kilindini as escort for Convoy DKA16A to Aden.

                24th        Detached from DKA16A on arrival at Aden.

                28th        Sailed from Aden for Kilindini.

 

May

                3rd          Arrived at Kilindini.

                7th          Took passage to Somali coast for investigation into salvage of U852.

                                (Note: U852 had been damaged in an air attack by a WELLINGTON aircraft from

                                612 Squadron RAF 50 miles south of Cape Guardafui.

                                The submarine had been grounded deliberately and abandoned.

                                See U-BOATS DESTROYED by P Kemp.)

                11th        Called at Benda Beila on Scroll coast.

                12th        Called at Danta, north of Benda Beila.

                13th        At Benda Beila for investigation work.

                22nd       Took passage to Aden.

                24th        Arrived at Aden.

                27th        Took passage to Hordio, north of Dante.

                29th        At Hordio

                30th        Returned to Benda Beila.

 

June

                7th          Took passage from Benda Beila on completion of work.

                12th        Arrived at Kilindini.

                13th        Took passage from Kilindini

                                (Note: One source records escort for Convoy KD 5 in this period.

                                In view of activities of German and Japanese submarines in area may have

                                carried out an anti-submarine deployment.)

                23rd        At Diego Suarez.

                30th        Returned to Benda Beila.

 

June

                7th          Took passage from Benda Beila on completion of work.

                12th        Arrived at Kilindini.

                13th        Took passage from Kilindini

                                (Note: One source records escort for Convoy KD 5 in this period.

                                In view of activities of German and Japanese submarines in area may have

                                carried out an anti-submarine deployment.)

                23rd        At Diego Suarez.

 

July

                15th        Took passage to escort convoy to Reunion, Mauritius during Indian Ocean passage.

                16th        At Reunion and arrived at Mauritius.

                18th        Took passage to Kilindini from Mauritius as escort for Convoy MK2.

                24th        Arrived at Kilindini and detached from MK2.

                30th        Took passage to Aden as escort for Convoy OM56 to Aden with HMS BANFF..

 

August

                5th          Detached from OM56 on arrival at Aden.

                6th          Deployed at Aden for ant-submarine patrol and visited Perim.

                to

                17th

                18th        Took passage from Aden in Kilindini.

                25th        Arrived at Kilindini.

 

September             Deployed at Kilindini.

                16th        Sailed from Kilindini as escort for Convoy KR12A

                21st         Arrived at Seychelles with KR12A.

                26th        Escorted Motor Minesweepers during passage from Seychelles to Addu Atoll.

 

October

                1st           Arrived at Addu Atoll with MMS.

                2nd         Took passage to return to Kilindini.

                9th          Arrived at Kilindini and prepared for refit.

                24th        Passage to Durban for refit.

                31st         Arrived at Durban.

 

November              Under refit.

to

December

 

1 9 4 5

 

January                  Under refit

to

March

 

April                       Carried out post refit trials.

                16th        Took passage from Durban to resume service.

                25th        Arrived at Kilindini.

 

May                        Deployed at Kilindini and visited Klsit Is.

                12th        Took passage from Kilindini for convoy defence in Arabian Sea.

                17th        Arrived at Aden.

                26th        Took passage from Aden for Bombay.

 

June

                4th          Deployed at Bombay after arrival.

                11th        Took passage to Colombo for escort of solitary convoys.

 

July                         Deployed at Bombay.

                25th        Escorted military convoy to Rangoon with call at Trincomalee

                                (Note: Planned landings in Malaya required build up of military resources

                                in Burma  (Operation ZIPPER).

                                This operation was delayed several times because of US insistence and

                                implementation of the return of service personnel from SEAC under the

                                PYTHONS Scheme.

                                See THE FORGOTTEN FLEET by J Winton, Final SEAC Report (HMSO),

                                WAR WITH JAPAN (HMSO) and for information about all mercantiles and

                                warships involved BRITISH INVASION FLEETS by J de Winser.)

                29th        Arrived at Rangoon. August

 

August

                4th          Took passage from Rangoon for local escort.

                6th          At Kyaukpui , Ramree Island and Akyab, Burma..

                10th        Took passage to Rangoon with call at Akyab.

                11th        Returned to Rangoon.

                                (Note: No Battle Honour BURMA 1945 was awarded.

                                No Japanese attacks ware made on convoys In August.)

 

September             Deployed at Rangoon during delay of start of ZIPPER.

                2nd         Passage to Penang for ZIPPER deployment.

                                Passage to Malacca Straits.

                5th          Passage to Singapore from Penang.

                                (Note: Japanese signed allied surrender document on board HM Cruiser SUSSEX on

                                4th.September.)

                7th          Deployed at Singapore for convoy escort and shipping control.

                                See BRITISH INVASION FLEETS.

  

P o s t†† W a r†† N o t e s

 

HMS FISHGUARD continued deployment at Singapore until 21st October 1945 when she took passage† to Colombo arriving on 27th of that month. The ship sailed to Portsmouth on 3rd November and arrived via the Mediterranean on 1st December 1945. After de-storing the ship left Portsmouth to be returned to the US Coastguard Service and arrived at Boston to pay of on 4th February 1946. On 24th October 1947 this ship was sold for breaking.

 


 

Addendum

 

CONVOY ESCORT MOVEMENTS of HMS FISHGUARD

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

 

 

 

 

 

06/05/41

07/05/41

HX 125A

22/05/41

22/05/41

01/06/41

13/06/41

SC 033

18/06/41

21/06/41

01/06/41

15/06/41

HX 130

19/06/41

20/06/41

26/06/41

04/07/41

HX 135

11/07/41

12/07/41

13/08/41

16/08/41

OS 003

29/08/41

01/09/41

04/09/41

08/09/41

SL 086

24/09/41

26/09/41

13/10/41

14/10/41

OS 009

02/11/41

05/11/41

06/11/41

11/11/41

SL 092

01/12/41

01/12/41

13/12/41

15/12/41

OS 014

01/01/42

03/01/42

04/01/42

06/01/42

SL 097

24/01/42

24/01/42

11/02/42

14/02/42

OS 019

01/03/42

03/03/42

04/03/42

07/03/42

SL 102

26/03/42

26/03/42

02/04/42

03/04/42

OS 024

22/04/42

22/04/42

26/04/42

26/04/42

SL 108

19/05/42

19/05/42

01/06/42

02/06/42

OS 030

17/06/42

19/06/42

25/06/42

25/06/42

SL 114

17/07/42

17/07/42

31/07/42

01/08/42

OS 036

18/08/42

18/08/42

24/08/42

24/08/42

SL 120

14/09/42

15/09/42

26/12/42

26/12/42

KMF 006

03/01/43

03/01/43

06/01/43

06/01/43

MKF 006

14/01/43

14/01/43

24/01/43

24/01/43

KMF 008

01/02/43

01/02/43

02/02/43

02/02/43

MKF 008

09/02/43

09/02/43

25/02/43

02/03/43

KMF 010A

04/03/43

04/03/43

06/03/43

06/03/43

MKF 010A

14/03/43

14/03/42

31/03/43

01/04/43

KMS 012G

12/04/43

16/04/43

10/04/43

14/04/43

MKS 011

23/04/43

16/04/43

06/05/43

07/05/43

ON 182

16/05/43

22/05/43

19/05/43

25/05/43

HX 240

03/06/43

04/06/43

25/06/43

25/06/43

KMS 019G

05/07/43

06/07/43

14/07/43

14/07/43

KMS 019Y

16/07/43

unknown

17/07/43

17/07/43

MKS 018

22/07/43

22/07/43

27/06/43

22/07/43

UGS 011

23/07/43

unknown

22/07/43

25/07/43

GUS 010X

27/07/43

13/08/43

21/08/43

21/08/43

UT 001

21/08/43

04/09/43

08/12/43

08/12/43

OS 061KM

16/12/43

19/12/43

15/12/43

02/01/44

UGS 027

10/01/44

11/01/44

03/01/44

03/01/44

KMS 036

13/01/44

13/01/44

03/02/44

04/02/44

AKD 014

11/02/44

16/02/44

11/02/44

11/02/44

DKA 011

22/02/44

22/02/44

24/02/44

24/02/44

AKD 016

06/03/44

06/03/44

13/03/44

13/03/44

DKA 014

22/03/44

22/03/44

27/03/44

27/03/44

AKD 019

30/03/44

30/03/44

11/03/44

30/03/44

DKA 015

01/04/44

01/04/44

06/04/44

06/04/44

AKD 020

12/04/44

12/04/44

18/04/44

18/04/44

DKA 016A

24/04/44

24/04/44

15/06/44

15/06/44

KD 005

20/06/44

24/06/44

30/07/44

30/07/44

CM 056A

05/08/44

05/08/44

18/08/44

18/08/44

AK 012/2

25/08/44

25/08/44

16/09/44

16/09/44

KR 012A

01/10/44

01/10/44

24/10/44

24/10/44

MC 013A

31/10/44

31/10/44

16/04/45

16/04/45

CM 061

25/04/45

25/04/45

 

(Note on Convoys)

 

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