Die noctague amri
day and by night, by sea and sky'
9 4 3
Commissioned for service in Western
Storing and fuel embarkation began.
Commenced Acceptance Trials in North
Passage to Rosyth
Carried out Full Power Trials
Accepted into RN service.
Sailed fro Greenock.
Arrived in Clyde,
First Deck Landing by an AVENGER aircraft.
825 Squadron SEA
HURRICANE and SWORDFISH aircraft embarked at
sea off Cumbrae
9 4 4
Nominated for support of anti-submarine
operations in NW Approaches.
Flag Officer Carrier Training visited ship.
assessment of the ship was poor..)
Dragged anchor in Clyde
and sustained structural damage in collision
with HM Escort Carrier
Ship docked for examination,
Ship undocked on completion of repair
Resumed preparations for operational service
in NW Approaches for support of
Carried out flying exercises during which
two aircraft crashed.
crashes were later found to be due to water
infiltration into fuel.)
Other accidents were also found to be due to
Ship ready for deployment.
At Larne for meeting relating to planned
During flying exercises rating lost
overboard by slipstream of aircraft
Deployed with ships of 6th Canadian Escort
group to carry out antisubmarine operations
(Note: Ships in
Group were HM Canadian Destroyer QU’APPELLE,
HM Canadian Frigates
HM Canadian Corvettes PRESCOTT
Carried out search operations in
conjunction with Canadian Escort Group.
Aircraft from ship hit by return fire from
U-Boat sighted on surface.
(Note: One of
aircrew died from injuries.)
Air search operations in continuation.
Supplied fuel to ships
of Escort Group.
6th Escort Group joined by 2nd British
(Note: Ships in
Group were HM Sloops STARLING, WHIMBREL,
WILD GOOSE, MAGPIE
Aircraft from ship sighted U-Boat bu
follow up operations by HMCS QU’APPELLE not
Under attack by submarine whilst refuelling
HMCS QU’APPELLE but torpedo avoided by
Flying operations in continuation.
SWORDFISH search aircraft crashed into sea
after night take-off due to petrol
Aircrew of three rescued
by HMCS OUTREMONT.
Radar contact by search aircraft reported to
ships of EG2 which carried out attask
sinking U653. For
details see U-BOATS DESTROYED by P Kemp.
Flying operations in continuation
Refuelled ships of
Under torpedo attack after submarine contact
but this failed,
Flying operations restricted by weather
Disquiet amongst aircrew about frequent
failure of depth charges to explode and
charge failures traced to incorrect assembly
on untested weapons of modified
failure prevented sinking of three more
U-Boats which had been attacked
by 825 Squadron,
Only two of the 127 charges dropped had
Flying operations in continuation.
Tests carried out to investigate depth
Flying restricted by fog but the only
contact investigated was not found.
SWORDFISH aircraft crashed due to petrol
contamination and aircrew of three lost.
Flying restricted due to limitations of
space in hangar to change type of aircraft
Weather deteriorated and aircraft struck
Flooding caused power failure and consequent
loss of steering control.
Ship manoeuvred by main engines
Repair effected and normal steering
During flying operations SWORDFISH aircraft
overran Flight Deck due to movement of ship
weather conditions. Crew rescued by HMCS
HM Canadian Frigates CAPE
BRETON and GROU joined Canadian Escort
During continued flying operations with ship
pitching heavily SWORDFISH aircraft crashed
on landing with
two depth charges on racks. Crew able to
escape from wrecked aircraft
ignited and depth charges exploded. One
rating was killed by a splinter whilst
asleep in a
compartment below the Flight Deck.
Flying delayed whilst deck cleared. but
restricted by weather conditions.
Resumed flying in deteriorating
One aircraft crashed into barrier on return.
Returning aircraft jettisoned depth charges
before landing to prevent a repetition of
the explosion on
Flying operations continued in rough weather
which presented difficult landings,
One aircraft hit bridge on landing and was
able to maintain control over the damaged
satisfactorily the second time.
Two further barrier crashes due to weather
Ship withdrew from operations in late
afternoon and took passage to Clyde
conditions were unsatisfactory and loss of
four aircraft as well as aircrew
together with the
availability of fewer aircraft made the
return necessary although it
had been intended
that operations would continued for three
Arrived in Clyde
(Statistics of air
operations: 825 Squadron
100 Deck Landings (Day). 235 hours
22 Deck Landings (Night) 40
46 Deck Landings
3 Sorties (Night) 1.5 hours
Deployed for replenishment in Clyde.
Carried out price shoot.
Commenced Flying training
hit bridge in during take-off
HURRICANE aircraft fitted with Rocket
Projectiles to assist take-off. (RATOG)
During flying training SWORDFISH aircraft
recently repaired after earlier damage, had
after launch and ditched.
Aircrew were rescued by attendant destroyer,
Deployed for anti-submarine operations and
sailed from Clyde
escorted by HM Canadian
STORMONT of 9th Escort Group.
Commenced anti-submarine air search
operations in conjunction with HM Frigates
BICKERTON, AYLMER and
BLIGH of 5th Escort Group.
had been supporting passage of Outward
Convoy ONS233 and detached
to join ship for
These ships were refuelled during subsequent
HM Canadian Frigates KEATS, KEMPTHORNE and
GOODSON of 5th Escort Group
SWORDFISH aircraft made force landing in sea
after petrol failure.
Aircrew rescued by HMCS AYLMER.
Flying operations restricted by weather.
Operation area transferred to new area where
U-Boat was know to be deployed for
(Note: This was
directed by Admiralty as a result of
interception of wireless transmissions.
Arrived in designated area and carried out
flying operations based on interception
traffic by ships of Escort Group.
proved to be erroneous and saturation air
search operations failed.
Weather conditions restricted use of
SWORDFISH aircraft for searches.
Flying operations continued and some escorts
Successful trials established that landing
of aircraft could be carried during
Air search for U-Boat in
HURRICANE aircraft forced to ditch after
engine failure. Despite drop of dinghies
attempts to effect a rescue neither of the
crew survived one of whom.
died on board
HMCS GOODSON after recovered unconscious
from the sea.
U-Boat sighted after radar contact during
intensive air operations nut target
In low visibility conditions One SWORDFISH
aircraft short of fuel managed to
desperate shortage of fuel.
Frigates of 5th Escort Group began search
supported by air operations resulting in
sinking of U785
by HM Frigates BICKERTON, KEATS, AYLMER
See U-BOATS DESTROYED by P Kemp and HITLER’S
U-BOAT WAR by P Kemp.
Despite extreme weather conditions further
search operations for a second submarine
were flown until
conditions force their suspension.
When flying resumed possible contact was
made but subsequent attacks by ships of
Group were unsuccessful.
Flying operations delayed when Lift to
Flight Deck from hangar had a major defect.
Manual operation of lift used to transfer
aircraft and limited flying resumed.
Despite poor weather conditions air search
Ships of EG5 refuelled.
Three ships of EG5 detached and replaced by
Air search operations in continued in
support surface anti-submarine operations.
SWORDFISH aircraft crashed on landing and
went overboard due to erratic ship
rescue attempt by HMCS GOODSON there were no
Took passage to Clyde
on completion of overnight air patrols.
Arrived in Clyde.
Began routine maintenance which included
major investigation of the reasons
(Note: This was
successful and use of sea water instead of
compressed air which had
contamination of the petrol due to
Clyde maintenance in
Nominated for further
anti-submarine support operation in NW
Modified design SWORDFISH Mk III
embarked from shore.
aircraft were fitted with new design centimetric
ASV Mk III
Assisted Take-off Gear (RATOG) to improve
and allow four
depth charges to be mounted in good weather
Prepared to resume anti-submarine
Passage to Londonderry
for deployment with 5th Escort Group.
Sailed from Moville with HM Frigates AWE,
BULLEN, GOODALL and HM Canadian
Corvette ST THOMAS.
Flying operations commenced.
Rain and low visibility prevented flying.
HM Destroyer BULLDOG joined supporting
Flying operations resumed during afternoon
but marred by failures inn new radar sets.
(Note: This was
due to poor design of cabling used for
interconnection between units
and need for
repair reduced availability of aircraft for
Flying resumed in early afternoon.
Ship diverted to carry out out
search for U-Boat which had attacked fishing
in position west
of Cape Wrath about
870 miles from current search area.
Submarine involved was U11. For details see
HITLER’S U-BOAT WAR.)
Two HURRICANE aircraft launched to carry out
search of area where submarine was likely
to be on passage
away from the trawler attacks,
two were unable to return because of lack of
fuel and landed near Thurso.
Air search operations in continuation..
Rocket projectile accidentally fired during
testing by aircraft on Flight Deck
One rating was killed and another HURRICANE
Later another aircraft was unable to
take-odd because of Water contamination in
(Note: This was
traced to human error when water sea was
directly fed into supply tanks.)
Flying operations resumed when 500 gallons
of contaminated petrol had been removed and
had to be
One suspected contact was never confirmed.
Search area changed
Carried out air search operations until
these were suspended due to weather
Supply hose parted during refuelling of HMS
Frigates of 5th EG detached.
HM Escort Carrier STRIKER joined to assist
in search operations.
Air searches in continuation with HMS
During air patrol submarine sighted and
position passed to supporting corvette.
Landing conditions for return of SWORDFISH
aircraft made difficult by poor visibility
One aircraft crashed on Flight Deck whilst
landing and the fifth had to ditch due to
of petrol.. The
aircrew were rescued by HM Frigate MANNERS
after complex guidance
Arrived at Greenock.
Deployed in Clyde
Sailed from Clyde to
carry out flying exercises.
Diverted to take part in anti-submarine
operations as Force 31 and deployed with HM
source records HM Minesweeper PETROLA but
this ship did not commission
as HMS LIONESS until December 1944.)
Joined by HM Frigates BAZELY, BURGES, HM
Canadian Minesweeper TILLSONBURG
and HM Trawler THIRLMERE
Flying operations restricted by bad
visibility with landings controlled by an
positive submarine sighting was made.)
Returned to Clyde
on release from search.
Passage to Scapa
to join Home Fleet.
Nominated for provision of air cover during
passage of Russian Convoy JW 59 to
Kola Inlet and return Convoy RA59 from Kola
Inlet to UK
Deployed at Scapa Flow
and took part in whaler races.
Flag of CS10 transferred to ship from HM
Sailed from Scapa Flow
to join JW69 during passage from Loch Ewe
with HM Cruiser
and HM Escort Carrier STRIKER
screened by HM Destroyers VOLAGE,
VERULAM, VIRAGO, WHIRLWIND, WRANGLER,
SCOURGE and Canadian
HM Destroyers CAPRICE, MARNE,
MILNE, METEOR and MUSKETEER, joined.
(Note ; For
details of all Russian convoy operations
with details of all mercantiles
see CONVOYS TO RUSSIA by R A Ruegg,
CONVOYS by B Schoefield,
CONVOY ! by
P Kemp, ARCTIC
R Woodman and for
submarine deployments HITLER’S U-BOAT
Carried out flying
exercises with HMS STRIKER.
Met JW59 and deployed within convoy.
(Note: Battleship ARCHANGELSK (Ex HM
Battleship ROYAL SOVEREIGN on
passage to join
Russian Northern Fleet was also included in
Carried out air patrols to intercept any
enemy reconnaissance aircraft
Launched HURRICANE aircraft to intercept
radar contact with WILDCAT fighters from
HMS STRIKER. No
Nominated for provision of night air cover
Mk III Hurricane
Air search launched for interception of
reconnaissance aircraft which was
but sighted nine
Russian ships on passage to join Northern
Fleet based at Murmansk.
ships were on Lend/Lease from USA
and comprised Ex battleship
HMS ROYAL SOVEREIGN and eight Ex USN
destroyers which had been
on Lend/Lease to
Russian ships joined JW59.
First indications of
U-Boat activity by wireless transmissions.
HM Sloop KITE deployed for anti-submarine
support sunk by torpedo from U344
14 survivors rescued by HM Destroyer KEPPEL
but five died on board.
Intensive air search operations carried out
with HMS STRIKER in support of surface
deployments of escorts.
German flying boat intercepted and destroyed
by STRIKER aircraft.
Anti submarine patrol continued..
U344 sighted on surface by SWORDFISH
aircraft and sunk by depth charge attack.
Several attacks made by patrolling aircraft
despite intense return fire.
Neither rocket, depth
charge or acoustic torpedo attacks
by aircraft from both carriers
Presence of several of submarines confirmed
by aircraft searches after detection of
Extensive patrols maintained with aircraft
from HMS STRIKER.
Russian ships detached to make independent
Rocket hits during attacks by SWORDFISH from
ship forced surface submarine to dive
continued by surface vessels.
Sonar contact established by HM Sloop
MERMAID which resulted in the sinking of
depth charge operations by HM Sloop PEACOCK,
HM Frigate LOCH
DUNVEGAN and HM
The submarine U344 never surfaced and was
sunk by these attacks
For details see above
references and U-BOATS DESTROYED.
Detached from JW59 on arrival at Kola Inlet
and anchored off Vaenga
Flag or CS10 transferred to HMS JAMAICA
Flag of CS10 returned to ship.
Sailed from Vaenga
with HMS JAMAICA and HMS STRIKER screened by
Destroyers MILNE, MARNE,
METEOR, MUSKETEER and CAPRICE
Joined inward Convoy RA59A which had sailed
earlier from Kola Inlet
Escort included HM Destroyers KEPPEL. WHITEHALL,
MERMAID and PEACOCK as Anti-submarine
Striking Force with HM Frigate
LOCH DUNVEGAN, HM
Sloop CYGNET, HM Corvettes CAMELLIA,
CHARLOCK and OXLIP to be DEPLOYED AS OUTER
Commenced flying operations after delay due
SWORDFISH patrol had radar contact and
passed details to Striking Group.
Air search operations in continuation and
followed up detection of submarine
returning aircraft crashed into Barrier.)
Aircraft from HMS STRIKER sighted submarine
on surface in snow shower
Further indication of
U-Boat deployments in vicinity of convoy.
Patrol of three SWORDFISH aircraft sighted
surfaced submarine and directed
Striking Group to
position. Under fire from submarine
and carried out rocket attacks
Followed up with depth charges but these
failed to explode,
Ships of Striking Group carried out
sustained anti-submarine attacks resulting
of U394. See
U-BOATS DESTROYED and above references for
No further U-Boat attacks but air search
Ju88 German reconnaissance aircraft sighted
by HURRICANE interception flight but
One SWORDFISH aircraft crashed into sea on
fire after hitting bridge structure on
Aircrew rescued by ships seaboat
HURRICANE aircraft crashed after being hit
by stern of ship and hitting Barrier on
HURRICANE broke in two and hit other parked
which were damaged.
Detached from RA59A and returned to Scapa
Took passage to Return to Greenock,.
Two SWORDFISH launched to carry out
unsuccessful search for U-Boat reported in
(Note: Only one
was able to land on board and the other was
diverted to land ashore.)
Arrived in Clyde
after Squadron aircraft landed at Machrinhannish.
Deployed at Greenock.
825 Squadron left ship.
Ship dragged anchors and sustained damage to
upper deck fittings after collision with
famous liner had just returned from USA
with Winston Churchill and was
downstream from ship.)
Docking for repair arranged in Clyde
811 Squadron nominated for service on board
in place of 825 Squadron.
flying programme for new Squadron had to be
reduced until repair completed.)
Nominated for further detached service in
Home Fleet for air support during passage
of Russian Convoy
JW61 to Kola Inlet and return Convoy RA61 to
After repair completed deployed to carry out
flying exercises for 811 Squadron in Clyde.
Squadron included WILDCAT aircraft instead
of HURRICANE fighters.)
Sailed from Clyde
to rejoin Home Fleet for TRIAL.
Flag of CS10 transferred and took passage
from Scapa Flow with
Flag of CS10
embarked to join
HM Cruiser DIDO, HM Escort Carriers NAIRANA,
TRACKER, Frigates of 21st and
24th Escort Group with screened provided by
HM Destroyers NUBIAN and
UNDAUNTED of Home Fleet
For details of main escorts see above
Six Ex US Navy PC Boats also took passage
Carrier aircraft carried out anti-submarine
Two SWORDFISH aircraft delayed in landing by
WILDCAT aircraft launched to intercept
unknown aircraft which was found to be
SWORDFISH aircraft crashed into sea on
return to ship..
Despite rescue attempts both of crew lost
Detached from JW61 on
arrival at Kola Inlet after unscathed
Sailed from Kola Inlet to join return Convoy
RA61 which had left previously
Avoided torpedo by speedy manoeuvre.
SWORDFISH aircraft crashed into sea on
Only one of the two aircrew was rescued
SWORDFISH aircraft using RATOG crashed into
sea after take-off.
Aircrew were rescued.
(Note: One of
RATOG rockets had not fired which caused
Two WILDCAT aircraft broke loose from
Lashings on Flight Deck due to violent
ship movement in
sever roll of ship. One went overboard. and
the other was damaged.
As a result further landings were restricted
but two aircraft crashed during their
Detached from JW61 and returned to Clyde
and Squadron aircraft flown ashore
(Note: It was
decided that 811 Squadron required further
work-up to improve their
Deployed on Clyde.
deployment for flying training in
825 Squadron nominated to return to ship.
Squadron aircraft returned ship,
Deployed for flying exercises in Clyde
Nominated for detached service in Home Fleet
in support of passage of Russian
Convoy JW63 to Kola Inlet and return Convoy
to UK Operation GREYSTOKE).
(Note: No other
aircraft carrier was deployed and
availability of the ship was vital
to ensure safety
of these two convoy
Fog delayed return to land Christmas Leave
parties after exercises..
Arrived at berth despite
weather conditions by skilful navigation.
Sailed from Clyde
after problems in releasing cables.
Flag of CS10 transferred at Scapa
Took passage from Scapa Flow
to join JW63 with HM Cruiser DIADEM and
Launched SWORDFISH aircraft for
anti-submarine search after U-Boat reported
9 4 5
Joined JW63 and took
up station within Box.
Launched two aircraft to intercept unknown
aircraft detected approaching JW63.
This later was identified as a seaplane but
WILDCAT aircraft launched for another search
but not found.
Extempore aircraft radar equipment fitted
for ship use to reduce risk of
manoeuvring within convoy.).
Intensive search patrols flown in view of
likely assembly of U-Boats near
Detached from JW63 on arrival off Kola
Inlet after unscathed transit.
Took passage with destroyer escort to Vaenga
CS10 Flag transferred to HMS DIADEM
Flag returned to ship before sailing to join
return Convoy RA63 escorted by HM Destroyers
ZAMBESI, ZEBRA, WALKER
Launched aircraft to
carry out anti-submarine search
Air patrols maintained overnight in
deteriorating weather conditions.
Aircraft crash on landing damaged barrier
which prevented flying till repaired.
weather made steel deck dangerous for
working parties and
snow with ice made clearance essential.
Weather condition made flying impossible
Sustained slight damage to upper deck
fittings in heavy weather
SWORDFISH aircraft launched during night to
locate reported U-Boat without success,
Heavy gale caused some damage and flooding
Ships of convoy dispersed owing to weather
Made course for Thorshvn,
Faeroes escorted by HM Destroyers SCORPION
ships of escort also sustained major weather
damage with loss of
equipment as well as structural damage.)
Flag transferred to HMS DIADEM.
Sailed from Thorshvn
with HMS DIADEM and three destroyers.
Arrived at Scapa Flow
and sailed for Greenock
Squadron flew off to Machrihannish
Began refit and docking period.
Ship docked for routine examination of
Shipyard work completed
Carried out post refit trials in Clyde.
813 Squadron rejoined in Clyde
Commenced work-up for operational service in
Nominated fro detached service with Home
Fleet in support of passage of Russian
Convoy JW66 to Kola Inlet and return Convoy
RA66 to UK.
Flag of CS10 joined at Tail o the Bank and
sailed to join JW66 which had already taken
in company were:
HM Escort Carrier
PREMIER, HM Destroyers ZEALOUS,
ZEST, ZODIAC and
Met JW66 and deployed within convoy
HM Cruiser BELLONA joined convoy.
Launched one SWORDFISH and two WILDCAT
aircraft to allow ships in convoy to become
types of aircraft in use for defence during
Carriers began air patrols after four days
First anti-submarine patrol launched.
SWORDFISH RATOG gear failed and aircraft
crashed into sea.
Crew rescued by HM Canadian Destroyer HAIDA.
Patrol aircraft reported presence of
submarine after detection by sonobuoy
Later investigations were
Russian Catalina aircraft intercepted by
fighter from ship.
Detached from JW6 with HMS BELLONA and HMS
PREMIER when Local
Eastern escort joined and moved to away to
provide anti-submarine operations
entered Kola Inlet (Operation SONO-COOKE.)
Group of U-Boats was known to be awaiting
Both carriers launched SWORDFISH aircraft to
across the swept Channel and
AVENGER aircraft to
patrols ahead of outer screen.
Berthed in Vaenga
Sailed from Kola Inlet with return Convoy
Extensive anti-submarine operations were
carried out by ships of 7th and 19th Escort
Groups on 28th to deal
with the known assembly of at least 10
U986 and U307 were sunk during this
concentrated deployment to clear submarines
HM Frigate GOODALL was sunk after being hit
by a torpedo from U986 and had to be
During passage of RA66 air patrols were
maintained but there were no enemy air or
One Ju88 aircraft was intercepted by two
WILDCAT fighters and damaged.
Detached from RA66 with HMS PREMIER and
returned to Scapa Flow
with four destroyers as
Passage from Scapa
Deployed in Clyde
and prepared for service in British Pacific
Fleet as a Replenishment Carrier
For details of use and extent of Fleet Train
see THE FORGOTTEN FLEET by J Winton and
WAR WITH JAPAN
Extensive changes made by reduction in
number of ship’s company as ship was not to
deployed as an
operational aircraft carrier.
Sailed from Clyde to
to embark SPITFIRE and BARRACUDA aircraft by
passage to Australia
as deck cargo for replenishment in BPF.
FIREFLY aircraft were also embarked and
stowed in hangar,
Returned to Greenock
for final storing before departure.
Replacement drafts of naval personnel were
embarked for passage to join ships in Far
East , together
with staff of Drafting and Pay Office from Liverpool.
Took passage from Clyde
Transit of Suez
Called at Colombo.
Called at Trincomalee
Disembarked BARRACUDA aircraft at Brisbane
and sailed for Sydney.
Arrived at Sydney and disembarked
With the end of hostilities the need for a
Replenishment Ship had ended and ship was
for transport of
stores and personnel .
Sailed from Sydney
for the British Forward Base at Manus,
Naval personnel were also embarked.
Called at Manus.
Arrived at Hong
after brief call at the US Navy Forward
Base in Leyte.
Began embarkation of Australian prisoners
British and other civilians released after
end of hostilities embarked for passage.
Sailed from Hong Kong
Electrical failure during storm quickly
repaired whilst in Tasman Sea,
Arrived in Sydney
and passages landed.
Taken in hand for
improvement to ventilation system.
Deployed for further transport of stores to
Passage to Hobart,
with new Governor.
Passage to Hong
9 4 6
Embarked aircraft and vehicles at Hong
Kong for transport to Japan.
Took passage to Hong Kong
Returned to Sydney
from Hong Kong
Under refit at Sydney
Nominated for return to UK
VINDEX returned to Plymouth to Pay -off. On
return passage she was used to transfer
documentation and office equipment
from British Pacific Fleet administration
centre, HMS GOLDEN HIND at Sydney to Ceylon.
Whilst in Ceylon the ship was used to embark
US aircraft supplied under Lease Lend and take
them into the Indian Ocean where they were
dropped into the sea. On completion her final
duties were to carry gold bullion and the
Greek Crown Jewels from
Simons Town to UK. On passage she called at
Mauritius and Durban before sailing to Britain
with her valuable cargo
welded into a ships magazine. This ship
Paid-off on arrival at Plymouth and was
reduced to Reserve status. She was
laid-up at Rosyth
until purchased in October 1947 by the Port
Line from the Admiralty. It is therefore
presumed the that
the Admiralty must have bought the ship at
some time during her war service. The cost of
conversion back to trade
for other mercantiles of this type was paid
for by the Ministry of War Transport after the
end of WW2.