Allied Warships

HMS Thrasher (N 37)

Submarine of the T class

NavyThe Royal Navy
TypeSubmarine
ClassT 
PennantN 37 
Built byCammell Laird Shipyard (Birkenhead, U.K.) 
Ordered4 Sep 1939 
Laid down14 Nov 1939 
Launched28 Nov 1940 
Commissioned14 May 1941 
End service6 Nov 1945 
History

Decommissioned on 6 November 1945.

Scrapped at Briton Ferry, Wales on 9 March 1947.

 

Commands listed for HMS Thrasher (N 37)

Please note that we're still working on this section.

CommanderFromTo
1Lt. Patrick James Cowell, DSC, RN21 Jan 194112 Oct 1941
2Lt. Hugh Stirling Mackenzie, RN12 Oct 19413 Mar 1943
3Lt.Cdr. Arthur Richard Hezlet, DSC, RN3 Mar 194315 Oct 1943
4Lt. Hugo Rowland Barnwell Newton, DSC, RN15 Oct 194313 Nov 1943
5Lt.Cdr. John Wentworth McCoy, DSC, RN13 Nov 194317 Nov 1943
6Lt. Hugo Rowland Barnwell Newton, DSC, RN17 Nov 194321 Apr 1944
7Lt. Michael Frederic Roberts Ainslie, DSO, DSC, RN21 Apr 19446 Nov 1945

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Noteable events involving Thrasher include:


14 Jun 1941
After a very short work-up period of only one month HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. P.J. Cowell, DSC, RN) departed from Holy Loch bound for Gibraltar.

For HMS Thrasher daily (1200 hours) positions during this passage see the map below.


HMS Thrasher passage Holy Loch - Gibraltarclick here for bigger map

20 Jun 1941
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. P.J. Cowell, DSC, RN) arrived at Gibraltar.

22 Jun 1941
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. P.J. Cowell, DSC, RN) departed from Gibraltar for her 1st war patrol. She is to carry stores to Malta end then to proceed to Alexandria, patrolling along the Southern Italian coast and the West coast of Greece en-route.

For HMS Thrasher daily (1200 hours) positions during this patrol see the map below.


HMS Thrasher 1st war patrol daily positionsclick here for bigger map

23 Jun 1941
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. P.J. Cowell, DSC, RN) sights a French merchant in ballast of about 3000 tons North of Oran in position 36°34'N, 00°37'W. Thrasher was ordered not to attack French ships during the trip to Malta so Lt.Cdr. Cowell dives so that Thrasher would not compromise her position.

29 Jun 1941
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. P.J. Cowell, DSC, RN) arrived at Malta, she unloads the stores and then left for patrol later the same day.

1 Jul 1941
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. P.J. Cowell, DSC, RN) sights a convoy of three merchant vessels to the south-east of Capo Spartivento in position 37°45'N, 16°21'E. Unfortunately they are too far away to be attacked.

All times are zone -2)
0400 hours - Dived in position 37°45'N, 16°21'E
1205 hours - In position 37°45'N, 16°21'E sighted 3 merchant ships in ballast, range 11000 yards, bearing 270, course 210°. They were too far away to be attacked
2130 hours - Left patrol area to proceed to Alexandria as ordered by signal.

3 Jul 1941
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. P.J. Cowell, DSC, RN) sights what is thought to be a trawler near Cape Dukato, Lefkada Island, Greece in position 38°04'N, 20°22'E. Contact is however soon lost.

(All times are zone -3)
0535 hours - Dived
1842 hours - Sighted mast and funnel in position 38°04'N, 20°22'E. Most likely a trawler. Bearing 280°, range 10000 yards, steering 350° at high speed. Tried to close but lost contact at 1856 hours
2150 hours - Surfaced.

9 Jul 1941
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. P.J. Cowell, DSC, RN) ended her 1st war patrol at Alexandria.

22 Jul 1941
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. P.J. Cowell, DSC, RN) departed from Alexandria for her 2nd war patrol. She was ordered to land a person on Crete and then evacuate stranded troops. After this she is to patrol in the Aegean.

For HMS Thrasher daily (1200 hours) positions during this patrol see the map below.


HMS Thrasher 2nd war patrol daily positionsclick here for bigger map

28 Jul 1941
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. P.J. Cowell, DSC, RN) picks up 78 men from Crete. With so many on board the patrol in the Aegean had to be abandoned and Thrasher set course to return to Alexandria.

(All times are zone -3)
27 July 1941
0030 hours - Attempted to land Lt.Cdr. Pool, RNR by folbot but the weather was still not suitable. Abandoned the attempt
0245 hours - The wind dropped so now a successful landing was made. Withdrew to the seaward to return next night
2330 hours - While three nautical miles off Limni Bay received a signal that 46 men would be ready to be evacuated by 0100/28. Proceeded inshore.

28 July 1941
0210 hours - Operation completed, picked up 62 British soldiers, 5 Naval ratings and 11 Greeks, set course for Alexandria as it was impossible to continue the patrol with so many men aboard
0512 hours - Dived
2058 hours - Surfaced in position 34°22'N, 25°02'E

31 Jul 1941
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. P.J. Cowell, DSC, RN) ended her 2nd war patrol at Alexandria.

6 Aug 1941
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. P.J. Cowell, DSC, RN) departed from Alexandria for her 3rd war patrol. She was ordered to patrol in the Aegean.

For HMS Thrasher daily (1200 hours) positions, a failed attack and a sinking during this patrol see the map below.


HMS Thrasher 3rd war patrol daily positionsclick here for bigger map

12 Aug 1941
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. P.J. Cowell, DSC, RN) twice tries to attack enemy convoys near the Zea Channel. Both attacks had to be broken off.

(All times are zone -3)
0252 hours - Dived
Intended to patrol through the Zea Channel
1130 hours - Sighted 2 M.A.S. vessels off Angarlestro Point
1150 hours - In position 37°38'N, 23°58'E sighted a destroyer of the Folgore class off Gaidaro Island. At this time the M.A.S. vessels were closing. The destroyer was followed by a two-funnelled, camouflaged transport of 8000 tons. A trawler was also at the scene
1210 hours - The convoy altered course up the Mandri Channel
1220 hours - Broke off the attack due to the long range
1225 hours - Sighted another convoy coming out of the Thermia Channel, position 37°30'N, 24°11'E. Started attack. The convoy was made up of two large merchants (one of 10000 and one of 5000tons) escorted by a Folgore class destroyer and a Spica class torpedo boat, an armed merchant cruiser of 10000 tons and two aircraft. Later the two M.A.S. boats of the convoy sighted earlier joined this convoy
1300 hours - One of the destroyers turned straight towards and increased speed. The destroyer went straight overhead and then returned
1312 hours - Returned to periscope depth
1320 hours - The target turned away. Followed the merchants for 20 minutes hoping that they would turn back but the did not so at 1340 hours the attack had to be broken off
2117 hours - Surfaced

15 Aug 1941
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. P.J. Cowell, DSC, RN) fires four torpedoes against the German transport Bulgaria (1188 GRT, built 1894) off Cape Sunion, Greece in position 37°36'N, 24°03'E. All torpedoes however miss their target.

(All times are zone -3)
0307 hours - Dived and patrolled off the Western junction of the Thermia and Zea Channels
1105 hours - Sighted a Fiat bi-plane (convoy air escort) over the Zea Channel. Turned to the East expecting a convoy from the Zea Channel
1120 hours - Sighted smoke in the Mandri Channel, turned towards. Sighted a destroyer of the Folgore class and a merchant ship that was thought to be the Bulgaria. (The identification of the target was correct, the escort however was the Italian torpedo boat Sirio). Started attack
1158 hours - In position 37°36'N, 24°03'E fired four torpedoes and withdrew to the South-East. Intermittent depth-charging was heard until 1246 hours
1300 hours - The destroyer was no longer heard
2133 hours - Surfaced and proceeded through the Siphano Channel towards the Naxos Channel.

18 Aug 1941
HMS Thrasher investigates harbours on the Greek islands of Samos and Leros. Nothing of interest was sighted.

(All times are zone -3)
0520 hours - Investigated Samos. Nothing was seen in the harbours of Port Vathi and Kalovasi
2100 hours - Surfaced and proceeded through the Ikaria Passage to investigate Port Laki on Leros.

20 Aug 1941
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. P.J. Cowell, DSC, RN) sank the Greek sailing vessel San Stefano with gunfire off Cape Malea, Greece.

(All times are zone -3)
0525 hours - Dived / Patrolled in the Elaphonisos Channel. Sighted a large number of small sailing vessels and when of Cape Sta Maria sighted two caiques coming from the Westward. Decided to follow the 2nd caique
1600 hours - Sighted a schooner coming from the Westward, position 36°26'5"N, 23°00'E
2015 hours - The schooner entered Lefki Bay. Followed him into the bay and then surfaced at 2050 hours and sank the schooner (about 250 tons) with gunfire at 2055 hours.

27 Aug 1941
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. P.J. Cowell, DSC, RN) ended her 3rd war patrol at Alexandria.

10 Sep 1941
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. P.J. Cowell, DSC, RN) departed from Alexandria for her 4th war patrol. She is to patrol in the Gulf of Sirte.

For HMS Thrasher daily (1200 hours) positions and two failed attacks during this patrol see the map below.


HMS Thrasher 4th war patrol daily positionsclick here for bigger map

11 Sep 1941
On board HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. P.J. Cowell, DSC, RN) the bi-focal periscope begins to leak. Lt.Cdr. Cowell decides to return to Alexandria for repairs.

12 Sep 1941
After replacing the bi-focal periscope, HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. P.J. Cowell, DSC, RN) departed from Alexandria to resume her 4th war patrol.

23 Sep 1941
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. P.J. Cowell, DSC, RN) attacks an enemy convoy in position 32°01'N, 19°21'E. Three torpedoes were fired but these all missed. Thrasher was depth charged but she escapes undamaged.

(All times are zone -3)
0026 hours - In position 255° Benghazi lighthouse 30 nautical miles. Proceeded on course 285° to intercept the convoy
0120 hours - In position 32°01'N, 19°21'E sighted darkened ships bearing 335°. Altered course and closed at speed. The ships were seen to be in line ahead, speed 9 knots, course 105° and 6 cables apart. Selected the largest ship as target, leading the line
0132 hours - Altered course, The second and third ships most likely sighted Thrasher as they altered towards (2nd ship) and away (3rd ship)
0134 hours - Commenced firing three torpedoes against the leading ship. As the torpedoes were fired Lt.Cdr. Cowell realised it was not a merchant ship but something else. The first torpedo passed just ahead, the second ran under and the third ran off 35° to port on the surface. After firing Lt.Cdr. Cowell turned to port to fire at one of the other ships, but it was then discovered that Thrasher was much closer than first thought. The target was now identified as a destroyer that turned towards
0135 hours - Dived
0136 hours - Heard destroyer speeding up
0137 hours - Heard one explosion, maybe the third torpedo hitting the third ship in line
0139 hours - Two depth charges exploded fairly close
0140 hours - The destroyer was heard to pass overhead
0141 - Depth charges exploded, the destroyer was heard to circle round
0200 hours - the destroyer was heard leaving the scene
0229 hours - Surfaced. The convoy was made up of a Partenope class torpedo boat and two small (500 tons) merchant ships
0513 hours - Dived
1949 hours - Surfaced
2131 hours - Set course for Benghazi.

25 Sep 1941
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. P.J. Cowell, DSC, RN) attacks an enemy convoy in position 32°27'N, 19°41'E. Five torpedoes were fired but these all missed their target. Thrasher escapes without being depth charged.

(The convoy was most likely made up of the Italian merchants Capo Faro (3476 GRT, built 1906) and Iseo (2366 GRT, built 1918) escorted by Italian torpedo boat Orione. If so, the attack was not observed.)

(All times are zone -3)
0030 hours - In position 32°17'N, 19°44'E sighted two ships on the starboard bow. Altered course towards but identified them as escort vessels proceeding on a course of 320°, probably going to meet the convoy
0042 hours - Retired at speed to the westward and then proceeded to the north to intercept the convoy
0132 hours - In position 32°27'N, 19°41'E sighted smoke bearing 280°. Altered course towards and identified four ships. Two were merchant vessels, one of 1500 tons leading and one of 2000 tons about 1,5 nautical miles astern. Each was being circled by a destroyer. Passed down the port side of the convoy and turned in at 0150 hours
0200 hours - One destroyer came out from astern of the nearest merchant vessel (which had been selected as target) and came straight towards so at 0202 hours fired four torpedoes
0205 hours - Turned to port and fired one more torpedo. All torpedoes fired missed
0206 - Dived as the destroyer still came towards
0228 hours - Surfaced and gave chase
0304 hours - Sighted two vessels coming towards. They were identified as escort vessels
0311 hours - The escorts were closing rapidly so dived
0321 hours - The two escorts were joined by a third one
0330 hours - The escorts were heard retiring
0345 hours - Lost contact
0350 hours - Surfaced
0528 hours - Dived and proceeded southwards
1933 hours - Surfaced in position 31°24'N, 19°49'E and set course for the western half of our patrol area.

1 Oct 1941
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. P.J. Cowell, DSC, RN) ended her 4th war patrol at Malta.

20 Oct 1941
HMS Thrasher (Lt. H.S. Mackenzie, RN) departed from Malta for her 5th war patrol. She was ordered to patrol in the Gulf of Sirte off Benghazi.

For HMS Thrasher daily (1200 hours) positions, a sinking and failed attacks during this patrol see the map below.


HMS Thrasher 5th war patrol daily positionsclick here for bigger map

28 Oct 1941
HMS Thrasher (Lt. H.S. Mackenzie, RN) sank the Italian schooner Esperia (384 BRT, built 1925) with gunfire north-east of Benghazi, Libya in position 32°20'N, 20°10'E.

(All times are zone -2)
0556 hours - Dived in position 32°27'N, 20°08'E
0930 hours - While Thrasher was in position 32°19'N, 20°10'E sighted and commenced an attack on a three misted schooner of about 800 tons
0941 hours - Fired one torpedo that missed. The torpedo must have passed very close as the crew started to abandon ship
1010 hours - Surfaced and sank the schooner with 9 rounds of gunfire in position 32°20'N, 20°10'E
1016 hours - Dived
1036 hours - The schooner was observed to sink. Later a Crotone class minelayer and a Spica class torpedo boat were seen searching the area
1900 hours - Surfaced in position 32°24'5"N, 20°08'E and proceeded to intercept a convoy that was signalled.

1 Nov 1941
HMS Thrasher (Lt. H.S. Mackenzie, RN) is depth charged while trying to attack a group of two ships. Later she attacks a convoy with three torpedoes in position 32°32'N, 19°55'5"E but these all missed the intended target.

(All times are zone -2)
31 October 1941
0607 hours - Dived in position 32°22'N, 20°07'5"E
0830 hours - Sighted a three-masted schooner of about 800tons, escorted by a RD class minesweeper close inshore. Also two aircraft were seem overhead. They were too far off for a torpedo attack
0910 hours - In position 32°17'5"N, 20°05'25"E sighted a 600 ton barquentine about 5 nautical miles away. Commenced an attack
0933 hours - The barquentine returned to Benghazi so the attack had to be broken off
1900 hours - Surfaced in position 32°20'5"N, 20°10'E and patrolled to the North-East of Benghazi to try to intercept a convoy
2035 hours - In position 32°19'N, 20°07'E sighted two darkened vessels. Closed
2045 hours - Dived in position 32°18'N, 20°07'E. The ships were identified as a merchant vessel and an escort. An attack was not possible
2015 hours - Surfaced and chased the enemy. The convoy was about two nautical miles off. The larger vessel was identified as a Spica class torpedo boat and the smaller one was thought to be some sort of auxiliary vessel
2113 hours - Dived again. The two vessels were still in the area and could be seen several times through the periscope
2340 hours - Surfaced in position 32°21'5"N, 20°02'5"E and proceeded northwards still hoping to attack these ships.

1 November 1941
0028 hours - In position 32°27'N, 20°02'25"E sighted the torpedo boat coming straight towards at high speed so dived to 80 feet
0032 hours - First depth charges dropped but these were not close. Depth charges were dropped until 0049 hours (This was probably the Italian torpedo boat Polluce).
0115 hours - The H.E. of the torpedo boat faded away
0256 hours - Surfaced in position 32°32'N, 19°57'E
0352 hours - In position 32°31'25"N, 19°55'75"E sighted 2 darkened ships about 3.5 nautical miles away. Altered course towards
0356 hours - The two vessels were identified as torpedo boats (destroyers) and they were seen to turn towards so dived to 80 feet
0419 hours - Surfaced in position 32°31'75"N, 19°55'E
0421 hours - Sighted two darkened merchant vessels and 2 destroyers / torpedo boats. Turned towards
0427 hours - In position 32°32'N, 19°55'5"E fired three torpedoes at the rear and largest of the two merchant ships. All torpedoes missed (This convoy was most likely made up of the Italian merchants Capo Faro (3476 GRT, built 1906) and Capo Arma (3172 GRT, built 1905) escorted by Italian torpedo boat Procione. If so, the attack was not observed.)
0429 hours - A destroyer / torpedo boat turned towards so dived to 80 feet
0449 hours - Surfaced in position 32°31'75"N, 19°56'E
0614 hours - Dived and approached the coast north-east of Benghazi
1223 hours - Turned to the seaward to intercept a convoy that was announced by signal by Capt. S-10
1900 hours - Surfaced in position 32°31'5"N, 19°57'E.

2 Nov 1941
HMS Thrasher (Lt. H.S. Mackenzie, RN) fires two torpedoes against a Crotone-class minesweeper in position 32°26'N, 20°08'E. None of the torpedoes hit the target.

(All times are zone -2)
0610 hours - Dived in position 32°29'N, 20°10'5"E and patrolled the north-eastern approach to Benghazi
0950 hours - In position 32°23'N, 20°07'5"E sighted a Crotone class minelayer and one smaller vessel bearing 140, distance 5 nautical miles, course 030°, speed 10 knots
1015 hours - Both vessels altered course to 330°
1042 hours - Both vessels stopped in position 32°24'N, 20°12'E. Closed for an attack
1135 hours - The enemy ships went ahead on a north-westerly course
1236 hours - In position 32°26'N, 20°08'E fired no.3 and 4 torpedo tubes against the Crotone class minelayer from a range of 1400 yards. After firing Thrasher went deep. One minute and 8 seconds after firing the H.E. of the target and the torpedoes coincided. The torpedoes may have run under
1242 hours - The first of 13 depth charges was dropped. None were close. The last of the 13 depth charges was dropped at 1327 hours. Thrasher proceeded to the westward. Nothing was sighted for the rest of the day
1856 hours - Surfaced in position 32°28'5"N, 19°51'E and proceeded to the seaward.

8 Nov 1941
HMS Thrasher (Lt. H.S. Mackenzie, RN) ended her 5th war patrol at Malta

22 Nov 1941
HMS Thrasher (Lt. H.S. Mackenzie, RN) departed from Malta for her 6th war patrol. She was ordered to patrol in the Adriatic and later in the Ionian Sea.

For HMS Thrasher daily (1200 hours) positions and a sinking during this patrol see the map below.


HMS Thrasher 6th war patrol daily positionsclick here for bigger map

25 Nov 1941
HMS Thrasher (Lt. H.S. Mackenzie, RN) torpedoed and sank the Italian merchant Attilio Deffenu (3510 GRT, built 1929) about 20 nautical miles east of Brindisi, Puglia, Italy in position 40°37'N, 18°27'E.

(All times are zone -2)
0643 hours - Dived in position 40°28'5"N, 18°31'5"E and proceeded north-west along the coast towards Brindisi
1551 hours - In position 40°32'5"N, 18°18'E sighted two ships bearing 155°. Turned towards and commenced attack. The convoy proved to be three ships in line ahead about 1/2 mile apart. The first ship was estimated at 6000 tons, the second at 4000 tons and the 3rd at 2000 tons. Decided to fire at the leading and 2nd ship
1653 hours - In position 40°31'5"N, 18°13'E fired four torpedoes at the leading ship and turned to fire at the second ship. Before a salvo could be fired at the second ship the first ship was hit by one torpedo resulting in that the convoy scattered immediately. Thrasher continued to close in the hope of getting a further shot
1704 hours - Fired one torpedo at the second ship which appeared to be stopped at a range of 1000 yards. The torpedo missed and the ship got under way
1708 hours - A cloud of smoke was seen coming towards from Brindisi and approaching fast. Thrasher went deep and retired to the seaward. When last seen the ship hit was down by the bows, listing to starboard and the crew had abandoned ship
1720 to 1800 hours - Intermittent depth charging while Thrasher continued to retire to the North-East reloading the torpedo tubes
1845 hours - Lost contact with the ship that was hunting
2105 hours - Heard two distant explosions
2113 hours - Surfaced in position 40°39'N, 18°25'E and decided to carry out the first of the two special operations (patrol report does not mention the nature of the special operations)

13 Dec 1941
HMS Thrasher (Lt. H.S. Mackenzie, RN) ended her 6th war patrol at Alexandria.

1 Jan 1942
HMS Thrasher (Lt. H.S. Mackenzie, RN) departed from Alexandria for her 7th war patrol. She was ordered to patrol in the Ionian Sea and off the Gulf of Taranto.

For HMS Thrasher daily (1200 hours) positions and a sinking during this patrol see the map below.


HMS Thrasher 7th war patrol daily positionsclick here for bigger map

10 Jan 1942
HMS Thrasher (Lt. H.S. Mackenzie, RN) torpedoed and sank the Italian merchant Fedora (5016 GRT, built 1909) about 35 nautical miles north-east of Cape Dukato, Greece in position 38°59'N, 19°52'E.

(All times are zone -2)
0106 hours - In position 39°14'N, 19°41'E sighted a distant dark object bearing 310°, turned towards and closed
0115 hours - The object was identified as a medium seized merchant ship that was coming straight towards. The ship was accompanied by one smaller vessel. The enemy's course was 130°
0120 hours - Dived to attack from periscope depth. The weather on the surface was to rough for a surface attack. But the ships passed before an attack could be mounted
0154 hours - Surfaced and gave chase
0355 hours - Attacked on the surface and fired the first of four torpedoes at the largest vessel. The second and third torpedo of this salvo hit the target
0358 hours - Dived in position 38°59'N, 19°51'5"E
0400 hours - Heard loud breaking up noises
0401 hours - The first of about 20 depth charges was dropped. Depth charging continued for another two hours but none was close
1845 hours - Surfaced.

25 Jan 1942
HMS Thrasher (Lt. H.S. Mackenzie, RN) ended her 7th war patrol at Alexandria.

13 Feb 1942
HMS Thrasher (Lt. H.S. Mackenzie, RN) departed from Alexandria for her 8th war patrol. She was ordered to patrol in the Ionian Sea and the Gulf of Taranto passing to the North of Crete while en-route.

For HMS Thrasher daily (1200 hours) positions, and a failed attack during this patrol see the map below.


HMS Thrasher 8th war patrol daily positionsclick here for bigger map

16 Feb 1942
HMS Thrasher (Lt. H.S. Mackenzie, RN) makes a torpedo attack on the German merchant Arkadia (1756 GRT, built 1927) off Suda Bay, Crete, Greece. All torpedoes fired however missed their target.

(All times are zone -2)
0413 hours - Sighted three darkened ships bearing 255°, distance 5 nautical miles. Altered course towards. Thrasher is however unable to get into an attack position
0520 hours - Proceeded towards Suda Bay
0730 hours - Dived in position 060°, Cape Drepano distance 11,5 nautical miles
0855 hours - A small 1000 ton merchant ship escorted by a minesweeper or motor launch was sighted bearing 200°, distance 5 nautical miles. Their course was 120 and they had just left Suda Bay. Closed at speed to within 6000 yards. Could not get closed and at the range Lt. MacKenzie did not considered it worth firing torpedoes so the attack was abandoned
0945 hours - Sighted one small patrol vessel in the entrance to Suda Bay
1020 hours - Saw one motor launch approaching from Suda Bay. It passed 2 nautical miles astern and disappeared at about 12 knots in a north-easterly direction
1050 hours - Saw one M.A.S. boat leaving Suda Bay at high speed
1055 hours - The M.A.S. boat stopped about 3000 yards away bearing 240°. Thrasher went deep and retired to the Eastward
1150 hours - Sighted a large two-masted schooner entering Suda Bay
1155 hours - Sighted one merchant vessel bearing 060°. Altered course and started an attack. The merchant ship was about 3000 tons and was deeply laden. Five escorts were seen, one ahead, one on each beam and one on each quarter. Three of the escorts were transmitting on Asdic. Also one or two aircraft were circling overhead
1234 hours - Fired the first of a salvo of four torpedoes from 2000 yards. A few seconds after firing the first torpedo a muffled explosion shook the submarine considerably, probably a bomb dropped by an aircraft. Less than a minute later machine gun bullets were heard striking the water. Almost three minutes after firing the first torpedo a loud distant explosion was hear followed ten seconds later by another. This might have been the torpedoes exploding or depth charges. Thrasher dived to 270 feet and retired to the Northward
1245 hours - The first of a total of 33 depth charges was dropped. Most were too close for comfort. Minor damage was caused
1430 hours - While at periscope depth three A/S vessels were seen to be still hunting. Aircraft were also seen. Thrasher went deep again and continued to retire while reloading the torpedo tubes
1545 hours - Came to periscope depth again. Nothing in sight
1906 hours - Surfaced.

17 Feb 1942
Two bombs were removed from the deck and the casing of HMS Thrasher. These bombs were dropped by an aircraft during the attack on the merchant yesterday.

(all times are zone -2)
0150 hours - Discovered a large hole in the side of the gun platform and one unexploded bomb of about 100 lbs laying on the fore casing just forward of the gun. This bomb had only a small portion of it's tail attached to it, preventing it from rolling off the casing
0240 hours - Went to full speed astern and lowered into the water to let go the bomb over the bows. A further examination of the casing revealed another bomb inside the casing lying on the pressure hull just forward of the gun support. This bomb had to be dragged for 20 feet through the casing before it could be get out and dropped over the side at 0330 hours. This was accomplished by the first lieutenant Lt. P.S.W. Roberts, RN and petty officer T.W. Gould. They both received the Victoria Cross for this
0335 hours - Set course towards Cape Matapan
0623 hours - Dived. Closed to within five nautical miles from Cape Matapan and then set course to the Westward
1926 hours - Surfaced.

5 Mar 1942
HMS Thrasher (Lt. H.S. Mackenzie, RN) ended her 8th war patrol at Alexandria.

29 Mar 1942
HMS Thrasher (Lt. H.S. Mackenzie, RN) departed from Alexandria for her 9th war patrol. She was ordered to patrol in the Gulf of Sirte.

For HMS Thrasher daily (1200 hours) positions, sinkings and failed attacks during this patrol see the map below.


HMS Thrasher 9th war patrol daily positionsclick here for bigger map

30 Mar 1942
HMS Thrasher (Lt. H.S. Mackenzie, RN) is attacked by a friendly aircraft in position 32°20'N, 28°12'E. Two bombs are dropped but no damage is caused.

(All times are zone -2)
0350 hours - In position 32°20'N, 28°12'E dived to 80 feet on being attacked by a Sunderland aircraft, two bombs were dropped but these were not close enough to cause any damage
0452 hours - Surfaced
0507 hours - Sighted an aircraft, dived
1928 hours - Surfaced.

5 Apr 1942
HMS Thrasher (Lt. H.S. Mackenzie, RN) sights a convoy of 2 merchant ships and a torpedo boat in position 32°40'N, 15°32'E. Thrasher is in a perfect position for an attack but as the ships are in ballast and high in the water and Thrashers torpedoes are set for fully laden ships Lt. Mackenzie has to break off the attack.

(All times are zone -3)
0543 hours - In position 32°40'N, 15°32'E sighted three darkened ships right ahead distance about 8 nautical miles. They were coming straight towards and were identified as two merchant ships and a torpedo boat
0600 hours - Dived to completed the attack. When range was 2000 yards it was noticed that the merchants were rather small ships in ballast with their propellers half out of the water. All torpedoes were set to either 10, 12 or 14 feet. The attack was abandoned as the torpedoes would have ran under. The escorting torpedo boat was identified as a Generali or Cosenz class
2057 hours - Surfaced in position 32°11'N, 15°30'7"E.

9 Apr 1942
HMS Thrasher (Lt. H.S. Mackenzie, RN) torpedoed and sank the Italian merchant Gala (1029 GRT, built 1897) about 20 nautical miles west-south-west of Bengasi, Libya in position 31°49'N, 19°42'E.

(All times are zone -3)
7 April 1942
0529 hours - Dived and set course for Ras Zorug anchorage
1050 hours - Altered course to the eastward as no shipping was spotted at the Ras Zorug anchorage
1325 hours - In position 32°22'N, 15°23'E sighted one Spica class torpedo boat and two small merchant ships bearing 275° distant 8 nautical miles. Turned towards but was unable to close further then 8000 yards. Decided to intercept them the following night
2053 hours - Surfaced and set off in pursuit of the convoy.

8 April 1942
0927 hours - Dived but the convoy was not sighted during the day
2050 hours - Surfaced.

9 April 1942
0451 hours - In position 31°52'N, 19°33'E sighted three darkened ships. Increased speed and altered course as to get ahead of them
0604 hours - Dived to complete the attack from periscope depth. The ships were soon identified as being the same as sighted 2 days before
0635 hours - In position 31°49'N, 19°42'E fired the first torpedo of a salvo of three from 2000 yards at the leading merchant ships that was of about 1500 tons
0637 hours - One torpedo hit the leading ship just forward of the bridge. Also fired the first torpedo of a salvo of three against the second merchant (2500 tons). The first torpedo broke surface upon firing. No hits were obtained
0640 hours - Went to 80 feet and retired to the south-west. No counter attack followed
0700 hours - Came to periscope depth. Northing was seen of the merchant that was hit. The second was seen to make off towards Benghazi at full speed and the torpedo boat was picking up survivors in the position of the attack
0735 hours - The destroyer was now searching the area and was joined by a trawler or patrol vessel. Also a seaplane was circling overhead so went to 80 feet, continued to retire to the south-west and reloaded the torpedo tubes
2105 hours - Surfaced.

13 Apr 1942
HMS Thrasher (Lt. H.S. Mackenzie, RN) torpedoed and sank the German army cargo ship Atlas (2297 GRT, built 1927) south-west of Bengasi, Libya in position 31°26'N, 18°56'E. She also sank the Italian lighter Pilo 210 (30 GRT) with gunfire in the same area.

(All times are zone -3)
12 April 1942
0700 hours - Dived
0924 hours - Sighted one Spica class torpedo boat and three merchant ships bearing 210°, distance 7 to 8 nautical miles, course 090°. Altered course to close
0950 hours - The convoy altered course, range could not be closed further then 10000 yards so broke off the attack
1307 hours - Surfaced and set off to get ahead of the convoy for a night attack. The ships were most likely the same as sighted on 5 April now with a 2000 ton tanker with them. They were now also fully laden
1316 hours - Dived for an aircraft
1335 hours - Surfaced and continued the chase
1656 hours - Sighted masts and funnels bearing 105°. These were soon identified as the convoy. Altered course to get ahead of them
1740 hours - Lost sight of the convoy
1900 hours - Contact had not been regained so it seemed likely that they had altered course to the northward in the meantime
1925 hours - Sighted the upper works of a destroyer coming straight towards, bearing 045. Forced to alter right away and retired on a course of 225°
1940 hours - The destroyer altered course to the westward, not having sighted Thrasher at all. Altered course to get round him and to set off in pursuit of the main convoy
1950 hours - The destroyer, now about 8 nautical miles to the northward was seen to be escorting a small westbound merchant ship. This looked like the same ship that was missed on 9 April. This ship was now most likely returning in ballast to Tripoli.

13 April 1942
0700 hours - Dived
0855 hours - In position 31°48'N, 19°17'E sighted masts and funnels bearing 270°. These were soon identified as being yesterday's convoy
0930 hours - The convoy was seen to have one fighter aircraft as escort and also three small patrol vessels were present
1012 hours - In position 31°26'N, 18°56'E fired the first of three torpedoes against the leading merchant ship from 1800 yards. Obtained two hits and the ship was seen to sink in five minutes. Breaking up noises and explosions were heard for another hour
1015 hours - The first of a total of 19 depth charges was dropped. These were dropped by the patrol vessels. The torpedo boat took no part in the counter attack. None of the depth charges were close. Thrasher went to 80 feet and retired to the southward
1115 hours - Came to periscope depth, sighted one patrol vessel, one lighter (most likely part of the deck cargo of the sunken ship) and a lot of wreckage in the position of the attack
1120 hours - The patrol vessel left the area to go after the convoy
1302 hours - Surfaced to sink the lighter by gunfire as it appeared undamaged
1322 hours - Sank the lighter with 15 rounds of gunfire of which 5 were hits
1330 hours - Proceeded on the surfaced towards position 33°09'N, 14°37'E as ordered by Captain S.10.

19 Apr 1942
HMS Thrasher (Lt. H.S. Mackenzie, RN) attacked the German barge F 184 with gunfire west of Derna, Libya in position 32°53'N, 22°23'E. Return fire forced Thrasher to break off the attack.

(All times are zone -3)
0633 hours - Dived / 1408 hours - In position 32°53'N, 22°23'E sighted one eastbound motor lighter bearing 220°, distant 2 nautical miles
1416 hours - Surfaced and engaged with the deck gun from 2000 yards. Fired 37 rounds for only one possible hit
1422 hours - Machine gun fire from the target and heavier gunfire from shore forced Lt. Mackenzie to break off the action and dive
2107 hours - Surfaced and proceeded towards Alexandria.

22 Apr 1942
HMS Thrasher (Lt. H.S. Mackenzie, RN) ended her 9th war patrol at Alexandria

6 May 1942
HMS Thrasher (Lt. H.S. Mackenzie, RN) departed from Alexandria for her 10th war patrol. She was ordered to patrol in the southern Adriatic.

For HMS Thrasher daily (1200 hours) positions, sinkings and failed attacks during this patrol see the map below.


HMS Thrasher 10th war patrol daily positionsclick here for bigger map

16 May 1942
HMS Thrasher (Lt. H.S. Mackenzie, RN) attacks an enemy convoy in position 40°50'N, 17°40'E. Three torpedoes were fired but they are sighted by the ship they were fired against and evaded. Thrasher is counter attacked with depth charges but manages to escape without damage.

The attack was against the Italian armed merchant cruiser Brioni (1987 GRT, built 1931). This ships was escorting the Italian merchant Ivorea (3274 GRT, built 1908) together with the Italian torpedo boat Antonio Mosto.

(All times are zone -3)
0603 hours - Dived in position 40°58'7"N, 17°51'E
1100 hours - In position 40°50'N, 17°32'E sighted masts and funnel of one small merchant ship. The ship was southbound and close inshore. It passed out of range
1215 hours - In position 40°54'N, 17°42'E sighted mast and funnels of one small northbound merchant ship. This one was also close inshore and passed out of range
1414 hours - In position 40°50'N, 17°40'E sighted two merchant ships escorted by one torpedo boat. They were approaching from Brindisi. They kept well clear of the coast. They were in line ahead, the torpedo boat leading and the largest merchant ship, about 5000 tons, bringing up the rear. It was a very modern looking motor ship, half laden, and armed forward and aft. Lt. Mackenzie decided to attack it and if possible also attack the leading merchant ship, a ship of about 3500 tons also half laden
1447 hours - Fired first torpedo of a salvo of three at the rear and largest merchant ship from 2300 yards. As soon as the last torpedo was fired altered course to attack the leading merchant ship
1449 hours - The rear merchant ship was seen to have altered course and running down the torpedo tracks. Thrasher went to 80 feet and retired to the north-west
1453 hours - First of 12 depth charges; the first three were dropped by the merchant ship which was fired at. It was very quick to run down the torpedo tracks and it's initial charges were close. The torpedo boat joined in the hunt after a few minutes and dropped several depth charges that were not close
1515 hours - Both ships proceeded to the north-west at high speed to rejoin the remaining ship of the convoy. Thrasher altered course to the northward and the torpedo tubes were reloaded
1700 to 2000 hours - Several aircraft were sighted patrolling the area to 20 miles from the attack
2210 hours - Surfaced in position 41°07'8"N, 17°37'2"E and proceeded towards Punta San Gargano along the coastal direct route between there and Brindisi.

19 May 1942
HMS Thrasher (Lt. H.S. Mackenzie, RN) torpedoed and sank the Italian merchant Penelope (1160 GRT, built 1907) about 5 nautical miles north-west of Monopoli, Italy in position 41°01'N, 17°16'E.

(All times are zone -3)
0532 hours - Dived in position 41°09'N, 17°08'E and closed the coast 10 nautical miles north-west of Monopoli
0830 hours - In position 41°02'N, 17°17'E sighted masts and funnel of one heavily laden merchant ship of about 3500 tons approaching from the direction of Bari. Commenced attack
0852:30 hours - In position 41°00'6"N, 17°15'6"E fired the first of three torpedoes from 800 yards
0853 hours - Two torpedoes hit the target, the third missed astern and exploded when hitting the shore
0900 hours - Proceeded to the north-west towards Bari, reloading the torpedo tubes in the meantime
1300 hours - In position 41°07'N, 17°07'E sighted one Abba class torpedo boat and one auxiliary schooner approaching from the direction of Bari, apparently carrying out an A/S sweep. They remained within 2000 yards, proceeding at slow speed, until 1400 hours when the torpedo boat proceeded to the south-east and the schooner retired towards Bari
1630 hours - In position 41°11'N, 17°03'E sighted one small armed tug steaming out of Bari on a course of 070°. When in position 9 nautical miles 070° from Bari it slowed down and started circling about. Altered course to close its position. The tug was probably waiting to pilot a ship into Bari. If this ship appeared so much the better, it not Lt. Mackenzie intended to surface and sink the tug with gunfire as soon as it shows signs of returning to Bari
1920 hours - In position 41°15'N, 16°59'E sighted one very effectively camouflaged torpedo boat the Giuseppe Missori approaching from the eastward, course 250°, speed 15 knots. The tug joined up with the torpedo boat and they both proceeded into Bari
2226 hours - Surfaced in position 41°15'N, 17°03'2"E.

28 May 1942
HMS Thrasher (Lt. H.S. Mackenzie, RN) ended her 10th war patrol at Alexandria.

9 Jun 1942
HMS Thrasher (Lt. H.S. Mackenzie, DSO, RN) departed from Alexandria for her 11th war patrol. She was ordered to patrol the Central Mediterranean ranging from Tobruk to Tripoli and the Islands of the west coast of Greece.

For HMS Thrasher daily (1200 hours) positions, sinkings and failed attacks during this patrol see the map below.


HMS Thrasher 11th war patrol daily positionsclick here for bigger map

23 Jun 1942
HMS Thrasher (Lt. H.S. Mackenzie, RN) torpedoed and sank the Italian merchant Sant Antonio (1480 GRT, former Yugoslavian Anton, built 1919) in the Gulf of Sirte in position 31°53'N, 16°35'E.

At 2245 hours (time zone -3) on the 22nd Thrasher sighted the convoy (2 merchants, 1 torpedo boat) again she had already chased and attacked some hours before. At 0050 hours (23rd) she was in position six nautical miles right ahead of the convoy. She dived to make a submerged attack.

At 0133 hours three torpedoes were fired at the larger (2500 tons) of the two merchants. One hit was obtained. A slight and ineffective counter attack was carried out by the escorting torpedo boat. The merchant that was hit was heard to break up.

Note: the torpedo boat was the Italian Perseo.

29 Jun 1942
HMS Thrasher (Lt. H.S. Mackenzie, RN) torpedoed and sank the Italian sloop Diana (1568 tons, built 1940) north of Tobruk, Libya in position 33°30'N, 23°30'E.

At 1125 hours (time zone -3) masts were sighted in position 33°21'N, 23°20'E, bearing 360° distance eight nautical miles away. The ship appeared to be coming straight towards. Five minutes later it could be seen that the vessel was a small auxiliary travelling at high speed. This ship must be carrying a very important cargo.

At 1144 hours six torpedoes were fired from 600 yards. No less than four hits were obtained and the ship sank quickly. There was an immediate counter attack by motor torpedo boats (these had not been seen previously). 17 depth charges were dropped. At 1240 hours Thrasher returned to periscope depth. At the place of the attack a few rafts were seen as well as two motor torpedo boats.

4 Jul 1942
HMS Thrasher (Lt. H.S. Mackenzie, DSO, RN) ended her 11th war patrol at Beirut. Shortly before arriving at Beirut she attacked but missed German U-boat U-77 in position 32°48'N, 33°36'E.

(All times are zone -3)
0859 hours - in position 32°48'N, 33°36'E sighted a German U-boat bearing 060°, range 2500 yards, course 290°.

0903 hours - Fired a salvo of three torpedoes from 3000 yards. All torpedoes missed. The German U-boat increased speed and turned away. Thrasher surfaced to engage the enemy with the deck gun. The Germans dived so did Thrasher. (The Germans reported two torpedoes passing 50m to port)

26 Jul 1942
HMS Thrasher (Lt. H.S. Mackenzie, DSO, RN) is bombed in error by a British Swordfish aircraft off Port Said, Egypt. She is under repair for about a month due to the damage sustained.

29 Aug 1942
HMS Thrasher (Lt. H.S. Mackenzie, DSO, RN) departed from Port Said for her 12th war patrol. She was ordered to patrol off Tobruk and Derna.

For HMS Thrasher daily (1200 hours) positions and sinkings during this patrol see the map below.


HMS Thrasher 12th war patrol daily positionsclick here for bigger map

4 Sep 1942
HMS Thrasher (Lt. H.S. Mackenzie, DSO, RN) torpedoed and sank the Italian merchant Padenna (1589 GRT, built 1904) about 40 nautical miles north of Tobruk, Libya in position 32°44'N, 24°11'E.

0215 hours (time zone -3) - In position 33°00'N, 24°04'E sighted three darkened shapes bearing 105°, distant about 6 nautical miles. Altered course to close. Five minutes later the objects were seen to be two destroyers and one medium seized merchant ship on a southerly course. One destroyer was stationed ahead and one astern. The latter one was carrying out wide sweeps on either quarter of the merchant ship. Thrasher proceeded to work ahead of the merchant ship. (The ships sighted were actually were the Italian merchant Padenna and the Italian torpedo boats Lupo and Castore, these were detached from a larger convoy after being attacked by USAAF bombers).

0318 hours - Dived to completed the attack from periscope depth.

0355 hours - Fired three torpedoes from the stern tubes at the merchant vessel, that was estimated to be of about 5000 tons, from 2000 yards. Two hits were obtained.

0400 hours - retired to the Northward. Both destroyers carried out a search for about one hour. One passed overhead but both destroyers failed to gain contact and no depth charges were dropped. A third destroyer was heard to come up at high speed from the direction of Tobruk around 0440 hours and joined the search.

21 Sep 1942
HMS Thrasher (Lt. H.S. Mackenzie, DSO, RN) ended her 12th war patrol at Beirut.

6 Oct 1942
HMS Thrasher (Lt. H.S. Mackenzie, DSO, RN) departed from Beirut for her 13th war patrol. She was ordered to patrol in the Aegean Sea.

For HMS Thrasher daily (1200 hours) positions and sinkings during this patrol see the map below.


HMS Thrasher 13th war patrol daily positionsclick here for bigger map

12 Oct 1942
HMS Thrasher (Lt. H.S. Mackenzie, DSO, RN) sank a Greek schooner (In German service) with gunfire in the Aegean Sea, about 15 nautical miles east of Cape Drepano, Sithonia peninsula, Greece in position 39°56'N, 24°17'E.

Later Thrasher sank another Greek schooner (also in German service) about 10 nautical miles south-west of Cape Pinnes, Athos peninsula, Greece in position 40°01'N, 24°10'E.

(all times are zone -3)
0655 hours - Dived in position 39°45'N, 24°20'E.

1230 hours - In position 39°59'N, 24°17'E sighted a 200 ton schooner to the north-west on a south-easterly course. Closed.

1354 hours - Surfaced in position 39°56'N, 24°17'E and fired one shot across its bows. The crew reacted immediately, three diving over the side climbing in the small boat towing astern and rowing off at full speed. The remaining crew members were not so keen to take to the water and had to be encouraged by a few more rounds, which however failed to move them until the schooner was actually hit. Once they had abandoned ship the schooner was finished off.

1408 hours - Ceased fire, the schooner had been well holed and was settling slowly. The rowing boat was seen to return to pick up the other members of the crew.

1411 hours - Dived and proceeded to the north-west.

1510 hours - It was noticed that the schooner was still afloat and had not settled any further so it was decided to return to finish her off.

1539 hours - Surfaced and boarded the schooner. Some German money and a large sum of Greek money was recovered as well as the ships papers. The schooner was used for trading between Mudros and Saloniki. The cargo consisted of empty oil drums.

1610 hours - Fire was set to the schooner and proceeded to the north-west to intercept another 200 ton schooner about 8 nautical miles away sailing westward.

1643 hours - Fired a shot across the schooners bow. The crew abandoned ship at once.

1655 hours - In position 40°01'N, 24°10'E fired a few rounds at the schooner but these had little effect in making it settle so proceeded alongside to set it on fire. The cargo in the hold could not be identified due to the deck cargo of wood.

1730 hours - Cast off from the schooner leaving her well ablaze.

1818 hours - Dived.

2008 hours - Surfaced in position 39°49'N 24°16'E and proceed to patrol throughout the night on the Saloniki to Pireaus route between Cape Cassandra and the Skopelos Channel.

19 Oct 1942
HMS Thrasher (Lt. H.S. Mackenzie, DSO, RN) sank the Italian tug Roma (130 GRT, built 1930) with gunfire off Stampalia, Greece in position 36°43'N, 26°41'E. This tug was in service with the Italian Navy as an auxiliary minesweeper.

(all times are zone -3)
2258 hours - In position 36°43'N, 26°41'E sighted a small darkened ship bearing 280°, distance 6 nautical miles, course 040°. Altered course to get ahead.

2311 hours - Dived to make an attack from periscope depth by moonlight. Almost immediately the target was seen to be a small steam tug passing much closer than had been anticipated.

2323 hours - Surfaced and gave chase.

2350 hours - Opened fire on the tug. It was sunk after 35 minutes.

20 Oct 1942
HMS Thrasher (Lt. H.S. Mackenzie, DSO, RN) torpedoed and sank the Italian merchant Lero (1980 GRT, built 1936) between Symi and Rhodos Islands, Greece in position 36°26'N, 27°54'E.

(all times are zone -3)
1430 hours - In position 36°26'N, 27°54'E sighted a destroyer bearing 125°, 8 nautical miles distant on a course of 250°. Ten minutes later this was seen to be the starboard wing escort of a 2000 ton passenger ship, proceeding along the 100 fathom line off the north-west coast of Rhoades, with another destroyer stationed ahead. Altered course and ran in at full speed but there seemed little hope of getting closer than 6000 yards to start an attack.

1530 hours - The enemy altered course towards, range was now about 3500 yards.

1535 hours - Fired a salvo of 4 torpedoes against the merchant ship. One hit was obtained. The ship was heard to break up. One of the destroyers picked up the crew of the sinking ship while the other counter-attacked. 18 Depth charges were dropped but none were close.

1600 hours - While at periscope depth only the two destroyers were sighted, the target must have sunk.

1630 hours - The destroyers were joined in their hunt by three MAS-boats. 15 Minutes later the destroyers were seen to leave the area to the north-west. Thrasher retired westwards.

Lero was en-route from Samos to Rhodos and was escorted by the Italian destroyers Quintino Sella and Francesco Crispi

28 Oct 1942
HMS Thrasher (Lt. H.S. Mackenzie, DSO, RN) ended her 13th war patrol at Beirut. This completes her Mediterranean deployment as she is to return to the U.K. for a refit.

14 Nov 1942
HMS Thrasher (Lt. H.S. Mackenzie, DSO, RN) departed from Beirut bound for the U.K. where she is going to refit. En-route she is to deliver stores to Malta.

For HMS Thrasher daily (1200 hours) positions during this passage see the map below.


HMS Thrasher passage Beirut - Portsmouthclick here for bigger map

22 Nov 1942
HMS Thrasher (Lt. H.S. Mackenzie, DSO, RN) arrived at Malta. The stores are unloaded as well as all torpedoes on board.

24 Nov 1942
HMS Thrasher (Lt. H.S. Mackenzie, DSO, RN) departed from Malta and sets course for Gibraltar.

2 Dec 1942
HMS Thrasher (Lt. H.S. Mackenzie, DSO, RN) arrived at Gibraltar.

6 Dec 1942
HMS Thrasher (Lt. H.S. Mackenzie, DSO, RN) departed from Gibraltar for the U.K.

14 Dec 1942
HMS Thrasher (Lt. H.S. Mackenzie, DSO, RN) arrived at Falmouth.

17 Dec 1942
HMS Thrasher (Lt. H.S. Mackenzie, DSO, RN) departed from Falmouth for Portsmouth

18 Dec 1942
HMS Thrasher (Lt. H.S. Mackenzie, DSO, RN) arrived at Fort Blockhouse, the submarine base at Portsmouth.

20 Dec 1942
HMS Thrasher (Lt. H.S. Mackenzie, DSO, RN) arrived at Sheerness. She started a refit at Chatham Dockyard two days later.

4 May 1943
With her refit completed HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) departed Chatham Dockyard for Sheerness where she arrived later the same day.

5 May 1943
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) conducted trials of Sheerness.

6 May 1943
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) departed Sheerness for Portsmouth.

7 May 1943
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) arrived at Portsmouth.

17 May 1943
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) departed Porstmouth for Dartmouth where she arrived later the same day.

18 May 1943
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) conducted exercises off Dartmouth.

19 May 1943
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) conducted exercises off Dartmouth and proceeded to Plymouth upon completion.

20 May 1943
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) conducted exercises off Plymouth.

21 May 1943
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Plymouth with The British escort destroyers HMS Melbreak (Lt. G.E.C.G. Baines, RN) and ORP Krakowiak (Komandor Podporucznik (Lt.Cdr.) W. Maracewicz, ORP) in the morning and with HMS Wensleydale (Lt. W.P. Goodfellow, RNVR) and HMS Tanatside (Lt.Cdr. F.D. Brown, RN) in the afternoon. Upon completion of the A/S exercise in the afternoon Thrasher made a pracice attack on HMS Wensleydale.

23 May 1943
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) departed Plymouth for Holy Loch.

25 May 1943
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) arrived at Holy Loch for a period of training and exercises. These included exercises with handling midget submarines.

25 Jun 1943
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) departed Holy Loch for Scapa Flow. She makes the passage together with HMS Tantalus (Lt. H.S. Mackenzie, DSO and Bar, RN). They were escorted by HMS Alecto (Lt.Cdr. H.A.L. Marsham, RN).

27 Jun 1943
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) arrived at Scapa Flow for a period of A/S exercises as well as excercises for the C.O.Q.C. (Commanding Officers Qualifying Course).

14 Jul 1943
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) departed Scapa flow for Holy Loch. She makes the passage together with HMS Tantalus (Lt. H.S. Mackenzie, DSO and Bar, RN) and FFL Curie. They were escorted by HMS Alecto (Lt.Cdr. H.A.L. Marsham, RN).

16 Jul 1943
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) arrived at Holy Loch.

24 Jul 1943
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) was docked at Holy Loch.

26 Jul 1943
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) was undocked.

31 Jul 1943
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) departed Kames Bay for Lerwick. One board was one Welman midget submarine.

Thrasher was escorted by HMS Angle (T/Lt. A.L. Kerr, RNVR).

1 Aug 1943
At 0856 hours HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) was recalled to Kames Bay to take on board a full completent of Welman midget submarines. She arrived back at Kames Bay at 2025 hours.

2 Aug 1943
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) departed Kames Bay for Loch Corrie (Loch a' Choire). On board was still one Welman midget submarine but two others had to be embarked from HMS Titania that was moored at Loch Corrie (Port HHX).

Thrasher was escorted by HMS Angle (T/Lt. A.L. Kerr, RNVR).

3 Aug 1943
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) arrived at Loch Corrie (Loch a' Choire).

4 Aug 1943
At Loch Corrie (Loch a' Choire) HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) embarked two more Welman craft maken the total on board three. She departed for Lerwick at noon.

The reason for taking three Welman craft on patrol is not clear to us (yet).

5 Aug 1943
At 2200 hours HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) arrived at Lerwick.

6 Aug 1943
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) departed Lerwick for her 14th war patrol (1st patrol of the 2nd commission). This was a work-up patrol to the North-East of the Shetlands. The objective of the patrol was to sink enemy submarines passing through the area.

For the daily positions of HMS Thrasher during this patrol see the map below.


View HMS Thrasher 14th war patrol in a larger map

17 Aug 1943
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) ended her 14h war patrol at Lerwick.

18 Aug 1943
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) departed Lerwick for Holy Loch. She made the passage together with HMS Truant (Lt.Cdr. J.G. Hopkins, RN). They were escorted by HMS Cutty Sark (Cdr.(retired) R.H. Mack, RN).

20 Aug 1943
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) arrived at Holy Loch.

Before arriving at Holy Loch the Welman midget submarines were disembarked at Kames Bay.

31 Aug 1943
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) departs Holy Loch for Loch Loch Cairnbawn (Port H.H.Z.). She made the passage together with HMS Truculent (Lt.Cdr. R.L. Alexander, DSO, RN), HMS Syrtis (Lt M.H. Jupp, DSC, RN) and HMS Sceptre (Lt. I.S. McIntosh, DSC, RN). The submarines are escorted by the British minesweeper HMS La Capricieuse (Lt.Cdr.(retired) C.M. Norman, RN).

1 Sep 1943
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) arrived at Loch Cairnbawn (Port H.H.Z.).

11 Sep 1943
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) departed from Port H.H.Z. for her 15th war patrol. She is to tow midget submarine X 5 to the entrance to the Alten Fjord in Northern Norway.

Thrasher and X 5 are part of Operation Source. An attack by six midget submarines on the German battleship Tirpitz.

For the daily positions of HMS Thrasher during this patrol see the map below.


View HMS Thrasher 15th war patrol in a larger map

19 Sep 1943
After a successful tow HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN), at 1930 hours (zone -1) takes midget submarine X 5 alongside to put the crew on board her that was to attack Tirpitz. The passage crew was taken off.

20 Sep 1943
At 1919 hours (zone -1) HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) and midget submarine X 5 (Lt. H. Henty-Creer, RNVR) both surfaced in position 70°38'N, 21°00'E. The tow and telephone line was disconnected and X 5 slipped and proceeded towards the Soroy Sund. Thrasher then departed the area to take up her patrol position.

The wreck of X 5 was later found near the entrance to the fjord where the Tirpitz was. Her exact role in the attack, and if she had been able to enter the Kaa Fjord, is not clear even to this day.

29 Sep 1943
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) started her return passage to Lerwick. No midget submarine had turned up at the rendez-vouz positions.

3 Oct 1943
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) ended her 15th war patrol at Lerwick. She departed for Holy Loch later the same day.

5 Oct 1943
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) arrived at Holy Loch. She was now assigned to training duties. These were carried out on the Clyde and also out of Londonderry in Northern Ireland.

11 Nov 1943
HMS Thrasher (Lt. H.R.B. Newton, RN) departed Londonderry for Scapa Flow. Off Sanda Island she is joined by HMS Sceptre (Lt. I.S. McIntosh, DSC, RN), HMS Sea Nymph (Lt. J.P.H. Oakley, DSC, RN) and HMS Storm (T/Lt. E.P. Young, DSC, RNVR) for onward passage to Lerwick or Scapa Flow. They were escorted by the British minesweeper HMS La Capricieuse (Lt.Cdr.(retired) C.M. Norman, RN).

13 Nov 1943
HMS Thrasher (Lt. H.R.B. Newton, RN) arrived at Scapa Flow for a period of (A/S) exercises.

27 Nov 1943
HMS Thrasher (Lt. H.R.B. Newton, RN) departed Scapa Flow. The next morning she made rendez-vouz with HMS Storm (T/Lt. E.P. Young, DSC, RNVR) for passage to the Clyde. The submarines were escorted by HMS Sardonyx (T/A/Lt.Cdr. E. Playne, RNVR).

29 Nov 1943
HMS Thrasher (Lt. H.R.B. Newton, RN) arrived at Rothesay.

6 Feb 1944
HMS Thrasher (Lt. H.R.B. Newton, RN) departed Rothesay for Liverpool where she is to refit at the Cammell Laird Shipyard at Birkenhead.

7 Feb 1944
HMS Thrasher (Lt. H.R.B. Newton, RN) arrived at Liverpool.

9 Feb 1944
HMS Thrasher (Lt. H.R.B. Newton, RN) commenced refit at the Cammell Laird Shipyard at Birkenhead.

17 Jun 1944
With her refit completed HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. M.F.R. Ainslie, DSO, DSC, RN) departed Birkenhead for Rothesay. She was escorted by HMS Cutty Sark.

18 Jun 1944
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. M.F.R. Ainslie, DSO, DSC, RN) arrived at Rothesay for a period of trials and training.

27 Jul 1944
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. M.F.R. Ainslie, DSO, DSC, RN) departed Holy Loch for Scapa Flow. She made the passage together with HMS Spark (Lt. D.G. Kent, RN). They were escorted by HMS Sardonyx (A/Lt.Cdr. T.A. Easton, RNVR).

30 Jul 1944
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. M.F.R. Ainslie, DSO, DSC, RN) arrived at Scapa Flow where she was to participate in A/S exercises.

13 Aug 1944
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. M.F.R. Ainslie, DSO, DSC, RN) departed Scapa Flow for Holy Loch. She made the passage together with HMS Spark (Lt. D.G. Kent, RN). They were escorted by HMS Shikari (Lt. E.H.U. Cautley, RNVR).

15 Aug 1944
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. M.F.R. Ainslie, DSO, DSC, RN) arrived at Holy Loch.

18 Sep 1944
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. M.F.R. Ainslie, DSO, DSC, RN) departed Holy Loch for Lerwick. She made the passage together with HMS Trump (Cdr. E.F. Balston, DSO, RN), HMS Truculent (Lt.Cdr. R.L. Alexander, DSO, DSC, RN) and HNoMS Utsira (Lt. S. Valvatne). The submarines were escorted by HMS Shikari (Lt. E.H.U. Cautley, RNVR).

21 Sep 1944
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. M.F.R. Ainslie, DSO, DSC, RN) departed from Lerwick for her 16th war patrol. This is the 1st patrol of her third commission, a work-up patrol in the Norwegian Sea to hunt enemy submarines.

For the daily positions of HMS Thrasher during this patrol see the map below.


View HMS Thrasher 16th war patrol in a larger map

30 Sep 1944
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. M.F.R. Ainslie, DSO, DSC, RN) arrived at Tobermory.

1 Oct 1944
At 0500 hours HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. M.F.R. Ainslie, DSO, DSC, RN) departed Tobermory for Holy Loch ending her 16th war patrol there at 1800 hours

11 Oct 1944
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. M.F.R. Ainslie, DSO, DSC, RN) departed from Holy Loch bound for the Far East. The first leg of the trip takes her to Gibraltar and she made the passage in convoy OS-92 / KMS-66.

26 Oct 1944
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. M.F.R. Ainslie, DSO, DSC, RN) arrived at Gibraltar.

28 Oct 1944
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. M.F.R. Ainslie, DSO, DSC, RN) departed from Gibraltar for Malta.

3 Nov 1944
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. M.F.R. Ainslie, DSO, DSC, RN) arrived at Malta.

10 Nov 1944
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. M.F.R. Ainslie, DSO, DSC, RN) departed from Malta bound for Port Said.

14 Nov 1944
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. M.F.R. Ainslie, DSO, DSC, RN) arrived at Port Said.

23 Nov 1944
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. M.F.R. Ainslie, DSO, DSC, RN) departed from Port Said bound for Aden (arrival date at Aden is unknown to us).

30 Nov 1944
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. M.F.R. Ainslie, DSO, DSC, RN) departed from Aden bound for Trincomalee.

12 Dec 1944
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. M.F.R. Ainslie, DSO, DSC, RN) arrived at Trincomalee.

9 Jan 1945
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. M.F.R. Ainslie, DSO, DSC, RN) departed from Trincomalee for her 17th war patrol (1st in the Far East). She is to patrol off the west coast of Siam.

No log is available for this period so unfortunately no map can be displayed.

22 Jan 1945
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. M.F.R. Ainslie, DSO, DSC, RN) sank four Japanese sailing vessels with gunfire of the west coast of Siam.

(all times are zone -6,5)
1256 hours - During investigation of the Butang Group of islands sighted a junk and surfaced. Ordered the crew to their small boat. Opened the range to 1500 yards and sank the junk (20 tons, no cargo) with 9 rounds of gunfire.

During this action a second junk was sighted to the eastward. Closed this junk. The junk was slightly smaller, estimated at 15 tons and was carrying a cargo of rubber. Took the crew on board and sank the junk with demolition charges. Set course to investigate Pulo Tenga.

While closing the islands sighted the sails of two more junks to the northward. Both junks were estimated to be 20 tons. One was empty and the other contained bicycles, one motor bicycle and some machinery. Both crews were taken on board before their junks were sunk. Also a small boat of one of the junks was taken on board to assist in the landing of the unwanted members of the junks crews.

In the evening all crewmembers of the junks (minus one) were landed at Pulo Mulon. Thrasher now proceeded northwards

27 Jan 1945
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. M.F.R. Ainslie, DSO, DSC, RN) sank three Japanese sailing vessels with gunfire of the west coast of Siam in position 08°56'N, 98°13'E.

(all times are zone -6,5)
1248 hours - Surfaced and commenced a surface sweep along the coast.

1400 hours - In position 08°56'N, 98°13'E sighted three junks of about 60 tons each, northbound and close inshore a few miles south of Koh Gah.

1445 hours - Fired two warning shots which had the desired effect and the crews abandoned their ships very smartly. Fire was opened from 3000 yards as a closer range was not possible due to the shallow water. Two of the junks were sunk by gunfire sat this range. It is therefore unknown what their cargos consisted of. The third junk on being abandoned swung round and sailed towards deeper water. It was therefore possible to board her. The junk was found to carry a cargo of soap and nuts. The junk was sunk with demolition charges. Thrasher now continued southward.

28 Jan 1945
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. M.F.R. Ainslie, DSO, DSC, RN) sank three Japanese sailing vessels with gunfire and demolition charges of the west coast of Siam in position 07°06'N, 99°31'E.

(all times are zone -6,5)
1200 hours - In position 07°06'N, 99°31'E the sails of a junk were sighted. While closing this junk a motor driven junk was sighted approaching the first one from the south-east. A third junk was being towed by this motor-junk. Continued to close and opened fire from 4000 yards. The motor driven junk quickly slipped its tow and departed the scene at its best speed. Despite several near misses this junk managed to escape. This was also because the gun jammed several times due to faulty ammunition. Both other junks (of 40 tons each) were sunk by gunfire.

1500 hours - Closed a southbound junk of 20 tons. The crew was taken on board and the junk, that was loaded with rice, was sunk by demolition charges. The crew was later put on board a fishing vessel with the exception of one Chinese.

1600 hours - Set course towards Trincomalee.

2 Feb 1945
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. M.F.R. Ainslie, DSO, DSC, RN) ended her 17th war patrol at Trincomalee.

3 Mar 1945
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. M.F.R. Ainslie, DSO, DSC, RN) departed from Trincomalee for her 18th war patrol (2nd in the Far East). She was ordered to carry out a special operation followed by in the Northern end of the Malacca Strait.

For the daily and attack positions of HMS Thrasher during this patrol see the map below.


View HMS Thrasher 18th war patrol in a larger map

9 Mar 1945
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. M.F.R. Ainslie, DSO, DSC, RN) carries out special operation 'Copyright'. A party of 6 is landed on the coast of Siam, north of Phuket off the Goh Gavai rocks (08°02'N, 98°15'E).

For 5 nights Thrasher searched the rendezvous area but the party did not return.

16 Mar 1945
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. M.F.R. Ainslie, DSO, DSC, RN) sank a Japanese sailing vessel with gunfire near Langkawi in position 06°30'N, 99°23'E.

At 1126 hours (zone -6.5) a southbound junk of 15 tons was intercepted in position 06°30'N, 99°23'E. The crew was taken on board and later transferred to a fishing vessel. The junk was sunk by gunfire.

18 Mar 1945
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. M.F.R. Ainslie, DSO, DSC, RN) sank a Japanese sailing vessel with gunfire near Langkawi in position 06°21'N, 99°24'E.

(all times are zone -6,5)
1745 hours - In position 06°21'N, 99°24'E sighted a junk of 20 tons. The crew was taken on board and later put on a fishing vessel. The cargo of the junk was rice. It was sunk with gunfire.

19 Mar 1945
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. M.F.R. Ainslie, DSO, DSC, RN) sank three Japanese sailing vessels with gunfire off Langkawi in position 06°06'N, 100°13'E.

(all times are zone -6,5)
1350 hours - Sighted a southbound motor driven two masted schooner of about 50 tons. Fired a warning shot and the schooner immediately heave to and the crew of 6 abandoned ship in their small boat. The vessel had a full cargo of mainly rice. The schooner was sunk by demolition charges. It started to rain heavily just as a junk was sighted to the North.

1530 hours - The rain cleared and the junk was in sight. Fired a warning shot. The crew promptly abandoned ship in their small boat. The junk was sunk by gunfire.

1600 hours - When about to open fire on a fully laden northbound junk of about 30 tons a Japanese aircraft broke through the clouds to the seaward. Dived. The aircraft most likely did not see the submarine as it was soon out of sight. Surfaced and sank the junk with gunfire. Position was 06°06'N, 100°13'E. Set course to the south of Penang.

22 Mar 1945
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. M.F.R. Ainslie, DSO, DSC, RN) carries out the second special operation of this patrol.

A party was picked up from Lalang Island in the Sembilan Islands group.

28 Mar 1945
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. M.F.R. Ainslie, DSO, DSC, RN) ended her 18th war patrol at Trincomalee.

14 Apr 1945
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. M.F.R. Ainslie, DSO, DSC, RN) departed from Trincomalee for her 19th war patrol (3rd in the Far East). She was ordered to carry out a special operation in the Nicobar Islands area.

No log is available for this period so unfortunately no map can be displayed.

17 Apr 1945
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. M.F.R. Ainslie, DSO, DSC, RN) begins her special operation. A party was landed at Kamorta Island (Nicobar Islands).

19 Apr 1945
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. M.F.R. Ainslie, DSO, DSC, RN) picks up the party that was landed two days before.

22 Apr 1945
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. M.F.R. Ainslie, DSO, DSC, RN) ended her 19th war patrol (3rd in the Far East) at Trincomalee.

25 Apr 1945
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. M.F.R. Ainslie, DSO, DSC, RN) departed from Trincomalee for her 20th war patrol (4th in the Far East). She was ordered to carry out a special operation off the coast of Burma.

1 May 1945
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. M.F.R. Ainslie, DSO, DSC, RN) carries out her special operation. In operation 'Ballast' a party of 6 was landed at Parker Island in the Mergui Archipaligo.

5 May 1945
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. M.F.R. Ainslie, DSO, DSC, RN) ended her 20th war patrol at Trincomalee.

14 Jun 1945
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. M.F.R. Ainslie, DSO, DSC, RN) departed from Trincomalee for her 21st war patrol (5th in the Far East). She was ordered to carry out a special operation.

No log is available for this period so unfortunately no map can be displayed.

19 Jun 1945
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. M.F.R. Ainslie, DSO, DSC, RN) begins her special operation.

21 Jun 1945
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. M.F.R. Ainslie, DSO, DSC, RN) ended her special operation.

22 Jun 1945
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. M.F.R. Ainslie, DSO, DSC, RN) sank three sailing vessels with gunfire off the west coast of Siam.

All times are zone -6.5
0650 hours - The sails of a junk were sighted south of Pulau Adang. It was a small vessel, only about 10 tons, and loaded with a cargo of rice. The crew was taken on board and the junk was sunk with gunfire.

0952 hours - A warning shot was fired against a junk of about 60 tons from 3000 yards. After the crew abandoned ship this junk was sunk with 14 rounds of gunfire.

1345 hours - Another junk was sighted. At 1440 hours the crew of six was seen to abandon ship. The junk, of about 30 tons, was then sunk with three rounds of gunfire. At 1459 hours HMS Thrasher made a crash dive as a Japanese 'Jake' aircraft dived down from the cloud cover. Thrasher bottomed at 40 feet. A small bomb exploded close by but did no damage.

27 Jun 1945
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. M.F.R. Ainslie, DSO, DSC, RN) ended her 21th war patrol at Trincomalee.

15 Jul 1945
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. M.F.R. Ainslie, DSO, DSC, RN) departed from Trincomalee for her 22st war patrol (6th in the Far East). She was ordered to patrol off the East coast of Sumatra and West coast of Malaya.

No log is available for this period so unfortunately no map can be displayed.

25 Jul 1945
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. M.F.R. Ainslie, DSO, DSC, RN) sank a Japanese sailing vessel with gunfire in the Lankawi area (northern entrance to the Straits of Malacca).

(all times are zone -6,5)

0910 hours - While operating in the Langkawi area, surfaced and sank by gunfire a two masted 20 ton junk fully laden with rice. The crew was taken on board. Two rounds were expended from as close as 200 yards.

27 Jul 1945
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. M.F.R. Ainslie, DSO, DSC, RN) sank four Japanese coasters and a Japanese sailing vessel with gunfire in the northern part of the Strait of Malacca.

(all times are zone -6,5)

0847 hours - While still operating in the Langkawi area sighted faint smoke to the North-West which proved later to come from a small wooden coaster of about 60 feet in length.

0925 hours - Surfaced and sank the vessel with gunfire. Range was 3500 yards. 35 rounds were used for 5 hits. The crew of this coaster gives valuable information on shipping movements. Lt.Cdr. Ainslie decides to patrol further inshore.

1030 hours - Surfaced to sink another coaster. This one looks like the first one but larger than the first one, 80 to 100 feet in length. A warning shot caused the crew to abandon ship. Fire was then continued from 3200 yards. 38 rounds were fired for 6 hits.

1225 hours - Yet another coaster came in sight. Soon afterwards followed by a second and later a third. All vessels looked like the second coaster sunk this day. All three vessels were proceeding as close inshore as possible at two mile intervals. It was decided to surface as the second one had passed. Then fired warning shots at the first and third coaster hoping that their crews would abandon them. In this way it was possible to deal with at least two of them and possibly all three.

1315 hours - Surfaced and fired the warning shots. The second and third ships stopped at once but the first one that was at extreme range unfortunately was able to escape. The second vessel was sunk when the crew was clear. Range 4400 yards, 21 rounds. The third coaster was sunk from 5300 yards with 28 rounds. Dived and retreated to deeper water but remained in the vicinity.

1605 hours - Sighted a vessel approaching from the North which was later found out to be a motor schooner.

1635 hours - Surfaced and closed this vessel which was in deep water. The crew of nine were taken on board. Their small boat was filled with unwanted prisoners whose interrogation was complete. The schooner was 60 feet in length, and was powered by a two cylinder engine. It was sunk with gunfire.

1 Aug 1945
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. M.F.R. Ainslie, DSO, DSC, RN) ended her 22th war patrol at Trincomalee.

29 Aug 1945
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. M.F.R. Ainslie, DSO, DSC, RN) departed from Trincomalee bound for the U.K.. The first leg of the trip is to Aden.

10 Sep 1945
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. M.F.R. Ainslie, DSO, DSC, RN) arrived at Aden.

11 Sep 1945
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. M.F.R. Ainslie, DSO, DSC, RN) departed from Aden bound for Suez.

16 Sep 1945
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. M.F.R. Ainslie, DSO, DSC, RN) arrived at Suez.

17 Sep 1945
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. M.F.R. Ainslie, DSO, DSC, RN) arrived at Port Said.

27 Sep 1945
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. M.F.R. Ainslie, DSO, DSC, RN) departed from Port Said bound for Malta.

1 Oct 1945
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. M.F.R. Ainslie, DSO, DSC, RN) arrived at Malta.

4 Oct 1945
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. M.F.R. Ainslie, DSO, DSC, RN) departed from Malta bound for Gibraltar.

8 Oct 1945
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. M.F.R. Ainslie, DSO, DSC, RN) arrived at Gibraltar.

10 Oct 1945
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. M.F.R. Ainslie, DSO, DSC, RN) departed from Gibraltar bound for Portsmouth.

15 Oct 1945
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. M.F.R. Ainslie, DSO, DSC, RN) arrived at Portsmouth. She paid off into reserve on 6 November 1945.

Media links


The T-class Submarine

Kemp, Paul J.


Discharged Dead

Hart, Sydney


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