Allied Warships

HMS Telemachus (P 321)

Submarine of the T class

NavyThe Royal Navy
TypeSubmarine
ClassT 
PennantP 321 
Built byVickers Armstrong (Barrow-in-Furness, U.K.) 
Ordered3 Aug 1941 
Laid down25 Aug 1942 
Launched19 Jun 1943 
Commissioned25 Oct 1943 
End service 
History

Scrapped at Charlestown on 28 August 1961.

 

Commands listed for HMS Telemachus (P 321)

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CommanderFromTo
1Cdr. William Donald Aelian King, DSO, DSC, RN21 Jul 194320 Aug 1945
2Lt. Paul Charles Chapman, DSO, DSC, RN20 Aug 1945mid 1946

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Notable events involving Telemachus include:


The history of HMS Telemachus as compiled on this page is extracted from the patrol reports and logbooks of this submarine. Corrections and details regarding information from the enemy's side (for instance the composition of convoys attacked) is kindly provided by Mr. Platon Alexiades, a naval researcher from Canada.

This page was last updated in June 2016.

23 Oct 1943
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) departed her builders yard at Barrow for Holy Loch. (1)

24 Oct 1943
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) arrived at Holy Loch to begin a period of trials and training. (1)

29 Nov 1943
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) departed Holy Loch for Scapa Flow. She was escorted by HMS Sardonyx (T/A/Lt.Cdr. E. Playne, RNVR). (2)

1 Dec 1943
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) arrived at Scapa Flow where she was to participate in A/S exercises. (3)

2 Dec 1943
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Scapa Flow together with HMS Termagent (Lt.Cdr. J.P. Scatchard, DSC, RN), HMS Speedwell (Lt.Cdr. T.E. Williams, RD, RNR) and HMS Middleton (Lt. C.S. Battersby, RN). (3)

3 Dec 1943
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Scapa Flow together with HMS Meteor (Lt.Cdr. D.J.B. Jewitt, RN), HMS Opportune (Cdr. J. Lee-Barber, DSO and Bar, RN) and HMIS Cauvery (A/Cdr. A.W. Beeton, RIN). (3)

4 Dec 1943
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Scapa Flow together with HMS Tenacious (Lt.Cdr. D.F. Townsend, RN), HMS Virago (Lt.Cdr. A.J.R. White, RN), HMS Brontes (Skr. A.E. Wood, RNR) and HMS Istria (Skr. A.E. Larner, RNR). (3)

6 Dec 1943
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Scapa Flow together with HMS Obdurate (Lt.Cdr. C.E.L. Sclater, DSO and Bar, RN), HMS Kempenfelt (Lt.Cdr. J.B. Marjoribanks, RN), HMS Tenacious (Lt.Cdr. D.F. Townsend, RN) and HMS Speedwell (Lt.Cdr. T.E. Williams, RD, RNR). (3)

7 Dec 1943
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Scapa Flow together with HMS Tenacious (Lt.Cdr. D.F. Townsend, RN). (3)

8 Dec 1943
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Scapa Flow together with HMS Celia (T/Lt. L.B. Merrick, RNR) and another trawler. (3)

9 Dec 1943
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) conducted exercises off Scapa Flow together with HMS Enterprise (Capt. H.T.W. Grant, DSO, RCN), HMS Bellona (Capt. C.F.W. Norris, RN) and HMS Golden Thyme (T/Lt. J.S. Bowes, RNVR). (3)

10 Dec 1943
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Scapa Flow together with HMS Tuscan (Lt.Cdr. C.H.de B. Newby, RN), HMS Tenacious (Lt.Cdr. D.F. Townsend, RN), HMS Meteor (Lt.Cdr. D.J.B. Jewitt, RN) and HMS Hardy (Lt.Cdr. R. Horncastle, RN). (3)

11 Dec 1943
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Scapa Flow together with HNoMS Stord (Lt.Cdr. S.V. Storheill), HMS Tenacious (Lt.Cdr. D.F. Townsend, RN) and HMS Vigilant (Lt.Cdr. L.W.L. Argles, RN). (3)

13 Dec 1943
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Scapa Flow together with HMS Tenacious (Lt.Cdr. D.F. Townsend, RN), HMCS Iroquois (Cdr. J.C. Hibbard DSC, RCN), HMCS Haida (Cdr. H.G. De Wolf, RCN) and HMS Gleaner (Lt.Cdr. F.J.G. Hewitt, DSC and Bar, RN). (3)

14 Dec 1943
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Scapa Flow together with HMS Tenacious (Lt.Cdr. D.F. Townsend, RN), HMS Vigilant (Lt.Cdr. L.W.L. Argles, RN) and HMS Venus (Cdr. J.S.M. Richardson DSO, RN). (3)

15 Dec 1943
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Scapa Flow together with HMS Gleaner (Lt.Cdr. F.J.G. Hewitt, DSC and Bar, RN) and HMS Regal (A/Skr.Lt. J.H.D. Dansie, RNR). (3)

16 Dec 1943
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Scapa Flow together with HMS Tenacious (Lt.Cdr. D.F. Townsend, RN). (3)

17 Dec 1943
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) conducted exercises off Scapa Flow. (3)

18 Dec 1943
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) departed Scapa Flow for Holy Loch. She made the passage south together with HMS Trusty (Lt.Cdr. (retired) J.R.G. Harvey, RN), HMS Ursula (Lt. A.G. Davies, RN) and HMS Uther (Lt. P.S. Beale, RN). They were escorted by HMS Sardonyx (T/A/Lt.Cdr. E. Playne, RNVR). (3)

21 Dec 1943
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) arrived at Holy Loch. (3)

31 Dec 1943
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) is docked at Holy Loch. (3)

2 Jan 1944
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) is undocked. (4)

11 Jan 1944
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) departed Holy Loch for Lerwick. (4)

13 Jan 1944
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) arrived at Lerwick. She departed from Lerwick for her 1st war patrol later the same day. This was a work-up patrol in the Norwegian Sea to the West-North-West of Trondheim, Norway.

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


HMS Telemachus 1st war patrolclick here for bigger map (5)

26 Jan 1944
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) ended her 1st war patrol at Lerwick. Nothing of interest was sighted during this work-up patrol. (5)

27 Jan 1944
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) departed Lerwick for Holy Loch. She made the passage together with HMS Venturer (Lt. J.S. Launders, RN). They were escorted by HMS La Capricieuse (Lt.Cdr.(retired) C.M. Norman, RN). (4)

29 Jan 1944
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) arrived at Holy Loch. (4)

31 Jan 1944
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) departed Holy Loch for Portsmouth where her battery was to be replaced. Passage south through the Irish Sea was made together with HMS Unswerving (T/Lt. M.D. Tattersall, RNVR). They were escorted by HMS La Capricieuse (Lt.Cdr.(retired) C.M. Norman, RN). (4)

2 Feb 1944
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) arrived at Plymouth. (6)

4 Feb 1944
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) departed Plymouth for Portsmouth. (6)

5 Feb 1944
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) arrived at Portsmouth. (6)

30 Mar 1944
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) shifted from Portsmouth to Plymouth. (7)

1 Apr 1944
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) departed Plymouth for the Clyde area. She was escorted by HMS La Nantaise (Skr. S.G. Cory, RNR) until 1500/1 when HMS Rushen Castle (T/A/Lt.Cdr. R.C. Warwick, DSC, RNR) took over the escort. (8)

3 Apr 1944
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) arrived at Kames Bay. (8)

4 Apr 1944
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) departed Kames Bay for Port HHZ. She was escorted by HMS Alecto (A/Capt. (retired) A.L. Sanders, RN). (8)

5 Apr 1944
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) arrived at Port HHZ for trials with 'special craft'. (8)

7 Apr 1944
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) departed Port HHZ for Holy Loch. Passage south was made together with HMS Terrapin (Lt.Cdr. D.S.R. Martin, DSO and 2 bars, RN) and HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN). They were escorted by HMS Sardonyx (T/A/Lt.Cdr. E. Playne, RNVR). (8)

9 Apr 1944
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) arrived at Holy Loch. (8)

17 Apr 1944
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) departed from Holy Loch for the Far East. The first leg of the trip is to Gibraltar. Passage south through the Irish Sea was made together with HMS Porpoise (Lt.Cdr. H.A.L. Marsham, OBE, RN). They were escorted by HMS Flint Castle (T/Lt. N. Harrison, RNVR).

(No positions are mentioned in the log of Telemachus nor have we found a passage report, therefore no map can be made.) (8)

29 Apr 1944
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) arrived at Gibraltar. (8)

6 May 1944
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) departed from Gibraltar bound for Malta. (9)

11 May 1944
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) arrived at Malta. (9)

13 May 1944
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) departed from Malta bound for Port Said. (9)

18 May 1944
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) arrived at Port Said. (9)

25 May 1944
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) is docked at Port Said. (9)

26 May 1944
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) is undocked. (9)

27 May 1944
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) transited the Suez Canal southbound. (9)

29 May 1944
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) departed from Suez bound for Aden. (9)

3 Jun 1944
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) arrived at Aden. (10)

8 Jun 1944
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) departed from Aden bound for Colombo. While on passage she was ordered to proceed to Trincomalee instead of Colombo. (10)

19 Jun 1944
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) arrived at Trincomalee. (10)

28 Jun 1944
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) conducted exercises off Trincomalee. (10)

29 Jun 1944
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) conducted exercises off Trincomalee together with HrMs Tromp (Cdr. F Stam, RNN) and HMS Rotherham (Capt. F.S.W. de Winton, RN). (10)

30 Jun 1944
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) conducted noise trials off Trincomalee. (10)

5 Jul 1944
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) departed from Trincomalee for her 2nd war patrol (1st in Far Eastern waters). She was ordered to patrol in the Malacca Straits.

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


HMS Telemachus 2nd war patrolclick here for bigger map (5)

17 Jul 1944
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) torpedoed and sank the Japanese submarine I-166 (1635 tons, built 1932, offsite link) in the Strait of Malacca in position 01°10'N, 103°45'E. (5)

29 Jul 1944
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) ended her 2nd war patrol (1st in Far Eastern waters) at Trincomalee. (5)

15 Aug 1944
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) is docked at Trincomalee. (11)

19 Aug 1944
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) is undocked. (11)

20 Aug 1944
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) conducted noise trials off Trincomalee. (11)

21 Aug 1944
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) departed from Trincomalee for passage to Fremantle, Australia.

For HMS Telemachus daily positions during this passage see the map below.


HMS Telemachus passage Trincomalee-Fremantleclick here for bigger map (11)

6 Sep 1944
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) arrived at Fremantle, Australia. (12)

13 Sep 1944
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) conducted exercises off Fremantle. (12)

14 Sep 1944
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) departed from Fremantle for her 3rd war patrol. (2nd in Far Eastern waters). She was ordered to perform a special operation in the Singapore area (we don't have the details of this special operation at this moment but a large party of SOE agents (Force 136) had to be landed on the Malayan coast).

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


HMS Telemachus 3rd war patrolclick here for bigger map (5)

17 Sep 1944
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) arrived at Exmouth Gulf to top off with fuel and some days training for her special mission. (5)

21 Sep 1944
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) departed from Exmouth Gulf. (5)

26 Sep 1944
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) made the northbound passage of Lombok Strait. (5)

17 Oct 1944
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) made the southbound passage of Lombok Strait. (5)

27 Oct 1944
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) ended her 3rd war patrol. (2nd in Far Eastern waters) at Fremantle. (5)

15 Nov 1944
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) is put on the slipway at Fremantle. (13)

17 Nov 1944
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) is put back in the water. (13)

26 Nov 1944
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) conducted exercises off Fremantle. (13)

1 Dec 1944
During 1/2 December 1944, HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN), conducted exercises off Fremantle. These included night exercises. (14)

4 Dec 1944
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) departed from Fremantle for her 4th war patrol. (3rd in Far Eastern waters). She was ordered to patrol in the South China Sea.

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


HMS Telemachus 4th war patrolclick here for bigger map (5)

8 Dec 1944
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) arrived at Exmouth Gulf to top off with fuel and some repairs to one of the engines. She departed from for patrol the next day. Telemachus is not routed through Lombok Strait due to increased Japanese activity there. (5)

20 Jan 1945
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO and Bar, DSC, RN) ended her 4th war patrol. (3rd in Far Eastern waters) at Fremantle. (5)

6 Feb 1945
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO and Bar, DSC, RN) is put on the slipway at Fremantle. (15)

7 Feb 1945
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO and Bar, DSC, RN) is put back in the water. (15)

20 Feb 1945
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO and Bar, DSC, RN) conducted exercises off Fremantle. (16)

21 Feb 1945
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO and Bar, DSC, RN) conducted noise trials off Fremantle. (16)

24 Feb 1945
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO and Bar, DSC, RN) departed from Fremantle for her 5th war patrol. (4th in Far Eastern waters). She was ordered to patrol in the Java and South China Seas.

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


HMS Telemachus 5th war patrolclick here for bigger map (5)

28 Feb 1945
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO and Bar, DSC, RN) arrived at Exmouth Gulf to top off with fuel. She departed from the next day. (5)

5 Mar 1945
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO and Bar, DSC, RN) made the northbound passage of Lombok Strait. (5)

23 Mar 1945
The Engineer Officer of HMS Telemachus is badly injured. His hand was nearly severed at the wrist. The next day a signal was sent to request a rendezvous with an aircraft in the Flores sea to enable the Engineer Officer to return to Australia for medical treatment. (5)

27 Mar 1945
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO and Bar, DSC, RN) arrived at the rendezvous position (09°40'S, 123°08'E). The Engineer Officer was transferred to a Catalina flying boat. Later this day Telemachus was ordered to abandon the patrol due to the continues mechanical problems. Telemachus was ordered to proceed to Port Darwin. (5)

30 Mar 1945
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO and Bar, DSC, RN) arrived at Port Darwin. Before she could proceed to Trincomalee engine repairs must be made. Also a new Engineer Officer was flown in. (5)

3 Apr 1945
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO and Bar, DSC, RN) departed from Port Darwin bound for Trincomalee. She is to proceed to the U.K. for refit. The deployment of Telemachus in the Far East was cut short due to continuous engine problems. (5)

16 Apr 1945
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO and Bar, DSC, RN) ended her 5th war patrol. (4th in Far Eastern waters) at Trincomalee. (5)

8 May 1945
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO and Bar, DSC, RN) departed from Trincomalee bound for Aden.

For HMS Telemachus daily positions during the passage from the far east to the U.K. see the map below.


HMS Telemachus passage Trincomalee - Plymouthclick here for bigger map (17)

17 May 1945
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO and Bar, DSC, RN) arrived at Aden. (17)

18 May 1945
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO and Bar, DSC, RN) departed from Aden bound for Port Said. (17)

23 May 1945
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO and Bar, DSC, RN) arrived at Port Said. (17)

31 May 1945
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO and Bar, DSC, RN) departed from Port Said bound for Malta. (17)

4 Jun 1945
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO and Bar, DSC, RN) arrived at Malta. (18)

9 Jun 1945
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO and Bar, DSC, RN) departed from Malta bound for Gibraltar. (18)

13 Jun 1945
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO and Bar, DSC, RN) arrived at Gibraltar. (18)

15 Jun 1945
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO and Bar, DSC, RN) departed from Gibraltar bound Plymouth. (18)

21 Jun 1945
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO and Bar, DSC, RN) arrived at Plymouth. She is to undergo a refit at Devonport Dockyard (18)

Media links


The T-class Submarine

Kemp, Paul J.

Sources

  1. ADM 173/18212
  2. ADM 173/18213
  3. ADM 173/18214
  4. ADM 173/18971
  5. ADM 199/1866
  6. ADM 173/18972
  7. ADM 199/2572
  8. ADM 173/18973
  9. ADM 173/18974
  10. ADM 173/18975
  11. ADM 173/18977
  12. ADM 173/18978
  13. ADM 173/18980
  14. ADM 173/18981
  15. ADM 199/1919
  16. ADM 173/19875
  17. ADM 173/19878
  18. ADM 173/19879

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


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