Allied Warships

HMS Shark (i) (N 54)

Submarine of the S class


HMS Shark as seen from one of the German trawlers before the submarine was scuttled by her crew.
Photo from Imperial War Museum (IWM), A-30496

NavyThe Royal Navy
TypeSubmarine
ClassS 
PennantN 54 
Built byChatham Dockyard (Chatham, U.K.) 
Ordered2 Jan 1933 
Laid down12 Jun 1933 
Launched31 May 1934 
Commissioned31 Dec 1934 
Lost6 Jul 1940 
Loss position58° 18'N, 5° 13'E
History

On 5 July 1940, while on patrol off Skudesnes, south-west Norway, HMS Shark (Lt.Cdr. Peter Noel Buckley, RN) was on the surface when a seaplane was sighted astern. As the submarine submerged to avoid the aircraft two or three bombs exploded close to the stern, followed closely by at least two more. The explosions caused considerable damage. Without steering gear and the hydroplanes jammed hard to rise, the submarine’s bow broached the surface to be greeted by more bombs. The submarine began to sink by the stern and all high-pressure air was used to return her to the surface. Once on the surface Shark got underway steering on main engines. Being sighted yet again the submarine came under sustained attack and No. 4 ballast tank was holed. Finally more aircraft arrived and Shark had no option but to capitulate. At about 0400 hours the next day three German minesweeping trawlers M-1803, M1806 and M-1807 arrived to take Shark under tow but the submarine was beyond saving and she began to sink stern first about 25 nautical miles west-south-west of Egersund, Norway in position 58º18'N, 05º13'E.

 

Commands listed for HMS Shark (i) (N 54)

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CommanderFromTo
1Lt. Peter Noel Buckley, RN16 Jan 19396 Jul 1940

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Notable events involving Shark (i) include:


The page for this submarine is currently (November 2015 and onwards) being updated.

4 Sep 1939
HMS Shark (Lt. P.N. Buckley, RN) conducted exercises off Malta. (1)

7 Sep 1939
During 7 and 8 September 1939, HMS Shark (Lt. P.N. Buckley, RN), conducted exercises off Malta. These included night exercises. (1)

16 Sep 1939
HMS Shark (Lt. P.N. Buckley, RN) conducted exercises off Malta. (1)

18 Sep 1939
HMS Shark (Lt. P.N. Buckley, RN) conducted exercises off Malta. (1)

22 Sep 1939
HMS Shark (Lt. P.N. Buckley, RN), conducted exercises off Malta. (1)

26 Sep 1939
HMS Shark (Lt. P.N. Buckley, RN) conducted exercises off Malta. (1)

27 Sep 1939
HMS Shark (Lt. P.N. Buckley, RN) conducted exercises off Malta. (1)

29 Sep 1939
HMS Shark (Lt. P.N. Buckley, RN) was docked at Malta. (1)

30 Sep 1939
HMS Shark (Lt. P.N. Buckley, RN) was undocked. (1)

4 Oct 1939
HMS Shark (Lt. P.N. Buckley, RN) conducted exercises off Malta. (2)

11 Oct 1939
HMS Shark (Lt. P.N. Buckley, RN) departed Malta for Gibraltar. Shark was to proceed to the U.K. (2)

15 Oct 1939
HMS Shark (Lt. P.N. Buckley, RN) arrived at Gibraltar. (2)

16 Oct 1939
HMS Shark (Lt. P.N. Buckley, RN) departed Gibraltar for Portsmouth. (2)

22 Oct 1939
HMS Shark (Lt. P.N. Buckley, RN) arrived at Portsmouth. (2)

28 Oct 1939
HMS Shark (Lt. P.N. Buckley, RN) departed Portsmouth for her 1st war patrol. She was ordered to patrol in the North Sea (Dogger Bank area). (3)

7 Nov 1939
HMS Shark (Lt. P.N. Buckley, RN) ended her 1st war patrol at Rosyth. (3)

12 Nov 1939
HMS Shark (Lt. P.N. Buckley, RN) departed Rosyth for Sheerness. She made the passage together with HMS Sealion (Lt.Cdr. B. Bryant, RN), HMS Snapper (Lt. W.D.A. King, RN) and HMS Sunfish (Lt.Cdr. J.E. Slaughter, RN). They were escorted by HMS Flamingo (Cdr. J.H. Huntley, RN) until 0900/13 when HMS Boadicea (Lt.Cdr. G.B. Kingdon, RN) took over the escort. (4)

14 Nov 1939
HMS Shark (Lt. P.N. Buckley, RN) arrived at the Chatham Dockyard. (4)

15 Nov 1939
HMS Shark (Lt. P.N. Buckley, RN) was docked at the Chatham Dockyard. (4)

23 Nov 1939
HMS Shark (Lt. P.N. Buckley, RN) was undocked. (4)

24 Nov 1939
HMS Shark (Lt. P.N. Buckley, RN) departed the Chatham Dockyard for Harwich. (4)

25 Nov 1939
HMS Shark (Lt. P.N. Buckley, RN) arrived at Harwich. (4)

5 Dec 1939
HMS Shark (Lt. P.N. Buckley, RN) departed Harwich for her 2nd war patrol. She was ordered to patrol off Texel, the Netherlands. Later she moved to the Heligoland Bight. (5)

21 Dec 1939
HMS Shark (Lt. P.N. Buckley, RN) ended her 2nd war patrol at Harwich. (5)

3 Jan 1940
HMS Shark (Lt. P.N. Buckley, RN) departed Harwich for her 3rd war patrol. She was ordered to patrol in the North Sea.

Before proceeding on patrol exercises were carried out with HMS Gallant (Lt.Cdr. C.P.F. Brown, RN). (5)

13 Jan 1940
HMS Shark (Lt. P.N. Buckley, RN) ended her 3rd war patrol at Harwich.

Shortly before entering harbour A/S exercises were carried out with HMS Grafton (Cdr. C.E.C. Robinson, RN) and HMS Griffin (Lt.Cdr J. Lee-Barber, DSO, RN). (5)

2 Feb 1940
HMS Shark (Lt. P.N. Buckley, RN) shifted from Harwich to the Chatham Dockyard to refit there. (6)

1 Apr 1940
With her refit completed, HMS Shark (Lt. P.N. Buckley, RN), returned to Harwich from the Chatham Dockyard. (6)

7 Apr 1940
HMS Shark (Lt. P.N. Buckley, RN) departed Harwich for her 4th war patrol. She was ordered to patrol in the Heligoland Bight. (5)

10 Apr 1940
HMS Shark (Lt. P.N. Buckley, RN) was ordered to patrol further to the North. (5)

11 Apr 1940
HMS Shark (Lt. P.N. Buckley, RN) was ordered to patrol of the Skaw. (5)

13 Apr 1940
HMS Shark (Lt. P.N. Buckley, RN) was ordered to patrol off Kristiansand, Norway. Later she returned to her area off the Skaw. (5)

15 Apr 1940
HMS Shark (Lt. P.N. Buckley, RN) attacked a convoy made up of the German transports Ahrendsburg (2988 GRT, built 1939) and Angelburg (3069 GRT, built 1938). They were escorted by the submarine tender Saar.

The torpedoes tracks were sighted and the convoy was able to evade them.

1407 hours - In position 57º55'N, 10º08'E sighted a convoy of two merchant that were thought to be escorted by the German minelayer Brummer. Started attack.

1418 hours - Fired five torpedoes at the second merchant ship from a range of 4000 yards. No hits were obtained. (5)

18 Apr 1940
Between 0326 and 0331 hours, HMS Shark (Lt. P.N. Buckley, RN), was depth charged by enemy A/S trawlers. A total of six depth charges were dropped fairly close but no damage was sustained. (5)

21 Apr 1940
HMS Shark (Lt. P.N. Buckley, RN) was ordered to return to base. (5)

26 Apr 1940
HMS Shark (Lt. P.N. Buckley, RN) ended her 4th war patrol at Harwich. (5)

7 May 1940
HMS Shark (Lt. P.N. Buckley, RN) departed Harwich for her 5th war patrol. She was ordered to patrol in the North Sea near Texel, the Netherlands. (5)

24 May 1940
HMS Shark (Lt. P.N. Buckley, RN) ended her 5th war patrol at Rosyth. (5)

11 Jun 1940
HMS Shark (Lt. P.N. Buckley, RN) departed Rosyth for her 6th war patrol. She was ordered to patrol in the North Sea. (5)

18 Jun 1940
HMS Shark (Lt. P.N. Buckley, RN) was ordered to return to Rosyth. (5)

20 Jun 1940
HMS Shark (Lt. P.N. Buckley, RN) ended her 6th war patrol at Rosyth. (5)

3 Jul 1940
HMS Shark (Lt. P.N. Buckley, RN) departed Rosyth for her 7th war patrol. She was ordered to patrol off Skudesnes, Norway. (3)

Sources

  1. ADM 173/16091
  2. ADM 173/16092
  3. ADM 199/373
  4. ADM 173/16093
  5. ADM 199/1840
  6. ADM 199/2570

ADM numbers indicate documents at the British National Archives at Kew, London.


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