Allied Warships

HMS Trenchant (P 331)

Submarine of the T class

NavyThe Royal Navy
TypeSubmarine
ClassT 
PennantP 331 
Built byChatham Dockyard (Chatham, U.K.) 
Ordered25 Aug 1941 
Laid down9 May 1942 
Launched24 Mar 1943 
Commissioned31 Jan 1944 
End service 
History

Sold to be broken up for scrap on 1 July 1963 and scrapped at Faslane.

 

Commands listed for HMS Trenchant (P 331)

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

CommanderFromTo
1Lt.Cdr. Arthur Richard Hezlet, DSC, RN15 Oct 194329 Jul 1945
2Lt. John Chaloner Ogle, DSC, RN29 Jul 194518 Jan 1946

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Notable events involving Trenchant include:


The history of HMS Trenchant 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.

4 Feb 1944
HMS Trenchant (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) departed from Chatham dockyard for Sheerness. After some trails en route she arrived there later the same day. (1)

8 Feb 1944
After a few days of trials out of Sheerness HMS Trenchant (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) returns to Chatham Dockyard. (1)

13 Feb 1944
HMS Trenchant (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) departed from Chatham Dockyard for Sheerness. (1)

15 Feb 1944
HMS Trenchant (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) departed from Sheerness for Portsmouth. She made the passage in a convoy. (1)

16 Feb 1944
HMS Trenchant (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) arrived at Portsmouth. (1)

18 Feb 1944
HMS Trenchant (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) departed from Portsmouth for Yarmouth. (1)

19 Feb 1944
HMS Trenchant (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) departed from Yarmouth for Plymouth. She made the passage together with the French submarine FFS Rubis (Lt.Cdr. H.L.G. Rousselot). They were escorted by HMS Darthema (T/Lt. C. Brunning, RNVR). (1)

20 Feb 1944
HMS Trenchant (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) departed from Plymouth for Falmouth. (1)

21 Feb 1944
HMS Trenchant (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) departed from Falmouth for Holy Loch. She was escorted by HMS Bridgewater (Cdr. (retired) R.H. Mack, RN). (1)

23 Feb 1944
HMS Trenchant (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) arrived at Holy Loch for a period of trials and training. (1)

4 May 1944
HMS Trenchant (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) is docked at Holy Loch. (2)

9 May 1944
HMS Trenchant (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) is undocked. (2)

14 May 1944
HMS Trenchant (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, 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 the French submarine FFS Junon (Lt. E. Schlumberger). They were escorted by HMS Sardonyx (T/A/Lt.Cdr. E. Playne, RNVR).

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


HMS Trenchant passage Holy Loch - Trincomaleeclick here for bigger map (2)

27 May 1944
HMS Trenchant (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) arrived at Gibraltar. (2)

28 May 1944
HMS Trenchant (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) departed from Gibraltar bound for Malta. She joins convoy KMS 51 for this passage. (2)

2 Jun 1944
HMS Trenchant (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) arrived at Malta. (3)

9 Jun 1944
HMS Trenchant (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) departed from Malta bound for Port Said. (3)

14 Jun 1944
HMS Trenchant (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) arrived at Port Said. (3)

15 Jun 1944
HMS Trenchant (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) transits the Suez Canal and afterwards departed from for Aden. (3)

20 Jun 1944
HMS Trenchant (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) arrived at Aden. (3)

22 Jun 1944
HMS Trenchant (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) departed from Aden for Trincomalee. Later she was ordered to proceed to Colombo instead. (3)

1 Jul 1944
HMS Trenchant (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) arrived at Colombo. (4)

2 Jul 1944
HMS Trenchant (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) departed from Colombo bound for Trincomalee. (4)

4 Jul 1944
HMS Trenchant (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) arrived at Trincomalee. (4)

24 Jul 1944
HMS Trenchant (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) conducted exercises off Trincomalee. (4)

25 Jul 1944
HMS Trenchant (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) departed from Trincomalee for her 1st war patrol. She was ordered to patrol off the West coast of Sumatra. She is also to perform a special operation.

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


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

5 Aug 1944
HMS Trenchant (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) makes a torpedo attack on a Japanese convoy. No hits were obtained.

(All times are zone -6.5)
2111 hours - The Officer of the Watch sighted a vessel fine on the port bow bearing 347°. Range was about 4000 yards.

2112 hours - Dived in position 02°19'5"S, 100°46'E.

2118 hours - The asdic operator reported 85 revs. reciprocating engine.

2121 hours - Came to periscope depth. Sighted what appeared to be a small three-island merchant vessel escorted by a torpedo boat or submarine chaser. The escort was on the merchants starboard quarter.

2127 hours - Fired three stern torpedoes. No hits were obtained and no counter attack followed.

The next day the same vessels were sighted again and identified as a coaster escorted by a ML. The torpedoed must have missed due to the small size of the target. Lt.Cdr. Hezlet wanted to attack with the gun upon sighting them again but this was not possible due to the heavy swell. (5)

9 Aug 1944
HMS Trenchant (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) sank a Japanese coaster and it's escort a Motor Launch with gunfire off the south-west coast of Sumatra in position 03°04'S, 101°16'E.

(All times are zone -6.5)
1515 hours - Sighted same small coaster and ML. They were Northbound.

1519 hours - Surfaced and engaged with the 4" gun from 3000 yards. Both ships were sunk. Picked up 14 Japanese survivors. (5)

10 Aug 1944
During 10 and 11 August 1944 HMS Trenchant (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) performs a special operation. She is part of 'Operation Boomerang'. American B-29 bombers are dropping mines in Japanese occupied territory. Terrapin is to act as beacon for planes proceeding towards Palembang. If needed she is also to carry out air/sea rescue duties. No planes were lost during this raid. (5)

17 Aug 1944
HMS Trenchant (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) ended her 1st war patrol at Trincomalee. (5)

25 Aug 1944
HMS Trenchant (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) is docked at Trincomalee. (6)

28 Aug 1944
HMS Trenchant (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) left dock. (6)

1 Sep 1944
During 1/2 September 1944, HMS Trenchant (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN), conducted exercises off Trincomalee. These included night exercises. (7)

5 Sep 1944
HMS Trenchant (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) departed from Trincomalee for her 2nd war patrol. She was ordered to patrol in the Malacca Straits. She is also to perform a special operation and a mine laying operation.

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


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

11 Sep 1944
During the night of 11-12 September 1944 HMS Trenchant (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) launches a team of commando troops in folbots to sabotage a railway bridge over the river mouth near Peudada, Northern Sumatra (Operation Spratt Baker). Due to the heavy swell the commando troops can't make a landing and the operation had to be abandoned.

(All times are zone -6.5)
11 September 1944
1900 hours - Surfaced in position 05°18'N, 96°35'E and opened the fore hatch to get the folbots on deck.

1930 hours - All folbots now on deck, ran in towards the river mouth.

2023 hours - Launched the folbots from position 358°, Peudada river mouth, 2 nautical miles.

2345 hours - Ran inshore to the recovery position and stopped.

12 September 1944
0325 hours - Picked up the folbots. The effort to blow up the bridge had failed due to the strong currents and due to that, lack of time. No opposition was encountered. Set out to sea.
(5)

12 Sep 1944
During the night of 12-13 September 1944 HMS Trenchant (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) again launches a team of commando troops in folbots to sabotage the railway bridge over the river mouth near Peudada, Northern Sumatra (Operation Spratt Baker). This time they were successful.

(All times are zone -6.5)
12 September 1944
Surfaced in position 05°23'N, 96°32'E and proceeded inshore and got the folbots on deck.

2030 hours - Launched the folbots in position 006° Peudada river mouth 1.6 nautical miles. Withdrew to seaward to charge.

13 September 1944
0030 hours - Ran inshore to recovery position and stopped.

0338 hours - A heavy explosion and flash ashore was observed in the direction of the railway bridge.

0340 hours - Embarked 2 folbots and their crews. No sign of the other 2 folbots.

0430 hours - Retired to seaward as daylight was approaching.

0500 hours - Sighted the other to folbots to seaward. They must have passed Trenchant in the dark.

0514 hours - Dived in position 05°18'N, 96°34'E and set course towards the river mouth for observation.

0730 hours - Made periscope reconnaissance and sighted that the railway bridge was destroyed. Proceeded to seaward. (5)

16 Sep 1944
HMS Trenchant (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) lays mines in the Straits of Malacca, near position 04°11'N, 98°24'E.

(All times are zone -6.5)
2015 - 2018 hours - Laid 1st row of 4 mines.

2018 - 2038 hours - Reloaded.

2040 - 2043 hours - Laid 2nd row of 4 mines.

2043 - 2109 hours - Reloaded.

2112 - 2115 hours - Laid 3rd and last row of 4 mines.

When the minefield was laid several coasters were anchored nearby. It was decided to engage them with the deck gun so at .....

2214 hours - Opened fire on one of the coasters. One hit was obtained but it was extremely difficult to see the target due to the dark night. It was also not possible to get any closer due to the shallow depth so the action was broken off. (5)

19 Sep 1944
HMS Trenchant (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) sank two sailing vessels through ramming east of Sumatra.

(All times are zone -6.5)
1215 hours - Sighted 2 small 20 ton junks in position 03°01'N, 100°34'E.

1425 hours - Surfaced and fired 2 practice rounds through the sail of the first junk to get the crew to abandon ship. No sign of the crew whatever.

1426 hours - Fired a HE shell, which hit amidships. Paused to allow the crew to abandon ship. No crew seen at all. Re-opened fire.

1430 hours - Ceased fire. The junk would neither catch fire nor sink.

1435 hours - Rammed and sank the junk.

1438 hours - Saw the crew of the other junk abandon ship in their sampan.

1451 hours - Rammed and sank this second junk.

1500 hours - Dived in position 03°03'N, 100°34'E. (5)

23 Sep 1944
German U-boat U-859 is sunk north-west of Penang in the Straits of Malacca, in position 05°46'N, 100°04'E, by torpedoes from the British submarine HMS Trenchant (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN). Trenchant was positioned to patrol off the Penang North Channel due to ULTRA code breaking information.

(All times are zone -6.5)
1055 hours - Sighted a vessel bearing 296°. This was soon identified as a large German submarine. Started attack.

1105 hours - Fired a stern salvo of 3 torpedoes from 650 yards. One hit amidships near the conning tower was obtained. The U-boat quickly sank on an even keel.

1119 hours - Surfaced to pick up survivors that were seen in the water. 11 were picked up before a Japanese escort vessel was sighted an Trenchant had to dive leaving 6 other survivors in the water. (5)

1 Oct 1944
HMS Trenchant (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) ended her 2nd war patrol at Trincomalee. (5)

17 Oct 1944
During 17-19 October 1944, HMS Trenchant (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN), conducted exercises off Trincomalee, these included night exercises. (8)

20 Oct 1944
HMS Trenchant (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) departed from Trincomalee for her 3rd war patrol. She is to launch Chariot human torpedoes for a raid on Phuket Harbour. Afterwards she was ordered to patrol in the Malacca Straits.

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


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

27 Oct 1944
Chariots released by HMS Trenchant (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) destroy the hulks of the former Italian merchants Sumatra (6126 GRT, built 1927) and Volpi (5292 GRT, built 1931). These ships were scuttled by the Italians on 8 December 1941 and were under salvage by the Japanese).

(All times are zone -6.5)
27 October 1944
2200 hours - 6.5 nautical miles from Phuket harbour two Chariots slipped for an attack on two former Italian merchant vessels that were under salvage in Phuket harbour. Chariot Tiny (T/S.Lt. A.W.C. Eldrige, RNVR, T/A/Petty Officer S. Woollcott), her target was the former Sumatra. Chariot Slasher (T/Petty Officer W.S. Smith / Ordinary Seaman A.F. Brown, her target was the former Volpi. Both Chariots successfully placed the charges on their target and proceeded back out of the harbour to return to HMS Trenchant.

28 October 1944
0303 hours - Re-embarked the crews of both Chariots. The Chariots themselves had to be scuttled as a Japanese MTB was heard to be patrolling in the immediate area.

0630 hours - Heard an explosion but as the periscope was down at that moment the effect could not be observed. Shortly afterwards another explosion followed. The Sumatra was seen to settle on the harbour bottom. (5)

9 Nov 1944
HMS Trenchant (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) attacks a Japanese convoy in the Malacca Straits. Five torpedoes were fired but no hits were obtained.

(All times are zone -6.5)
0842 hours - Sighted smoke bearing 301°.

0916 hours - Commenced attack on convoy, which consisted of one merchant vessel of about 3000 tons (in ballast), a 500 tons tanker (laden) and two coasters. They were escorted by two large submarine chasers.

0953 hours - In position 02°59'N, 100°05'E fired 5 torpedoes at the merchant vessel from 2700 yards. No hits were obtained.

1000 to 1015 hours - The submarine chasers counter attacked with 11 depth charges. None were very close so no damage was sustained. (5)

10 Nov 1944
HMS Trenchant (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) sank a sailing vessel with gunfire in the Malacca Straits.

(All times are zone -6.5)
1030 hours - Sighted a junk approaching.

1045 hours - Surfaced in position 03°06'N, 100°06'E to sink the junk with gunfire. Upon surfacing two submarine chasers were seen to the Eastward. Sank the junk with 12 rounds. The submarine chasers closed at high speed.

1055 hours - Dived and proceeded Northwards.

1114 hours - The submarine chasers were seen to pick up the crew of the junk from their sampan. They then proceeded on an A/S sweep westwards after dropping one depth charge. (5)

16 Nov 1944
HMS Trenchant (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) ended her 3rd war patrol at Trincomalee. (5)

4 Dec 1944
During 4/5 December 1944, HMS Trenchant (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN), conducted exercises off Trincomalee, these included night exercises. (9)

10 Dec 1944
During 10/11 December 1944, HMS Trenchant (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN), conducted exercises off Trincomalee, these included night exercises. (9)

11 Dec 1944
HMS Trenchant (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) departed from Trincomalee for her 4th war patrol. She was ordered to patrol in the Malacca Straits together with HMS Terrapin (Lt. R.H.H. Brunner, RN).

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


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

20 Dec 1944
HMS Trenchant (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) is fired upon and depth charged by a Japanese ship in the Malacca Straits.

(All times are zone -6.5)
2029 hours - An unseen vessel opened fire from the direction of the land.

2030 hours - Dived in position 03°18'N, 99°47'E. The vessel attacked with 3 depth charges, but did not alter speed or stop to listen. It was also not using Asdic.

2151 hours - Surfaced. (5)

21 Dec 1944
HMS Trenchant (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) sank two Japanese landing craft (probably 46-foot Daihatsu type) with gunfire off the eastern coast of Sumatra.

(All times are zone -6.5)
0951 hours - Sighted two landing craft.

0957 hours - Surfaced in position 03°23'N, 99°43'E and gave chase. A Jake aircraft was sighted in the distance.

1013 hours - Opened fire on the landing craft. The aircraft was seen to turn towards.

1020 hours - Both landing craft were sunk after 37 rounds.

1021 hours - Dived.

1024 hours - The Jake aircraft dropped one bomb fairly close on the Port side. (5)

25 Dec 1944
HMS Trenchant (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) and HMS Terrapin (Lt. R.H.H. Brunner, RN) sink the Japanese auxiliary minesweeper Reisui Maru (219 GRT). They also claim a coaster destroyed and three coasters driven ashore.

(All times are zone -6.5)
1555 hours - In position 03°18'N, 99°42'E sighted 4 coasters escorted by a trawler and one bomber aircraft overhead. Ordered, by SST, HMS Terrapin to close.

1627 hours - The aircraft was seen to disappear to the Northwards. Surfaced and engaged the trawler. Terrapin also surfaced and engaged the trawler. Trenchants fourth round hit the trawler on the bridge, the sixth round hit the forecastle under the gun. When the trawler was badly on fire Trenchant shifted target to the back of the trawler while closing the coasters at full speed. The trawler then blew up and sank. Three of the coasters beached themselves on the shore. The other one stopped. He was set on fire and burned out. Due to the shallow water it was not possible to close the other three to finish them off. (5)

29 Dec 1944
HMS Trenchant (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSO, DSC, RN) sank two Japanese sailing vessels by ramming in the Malacca Strait.

(All times are zone -6.5)
1207 hours - Surfaced in position 03°35'N, 100°46'E for a sweep to the North along the coast.

1329 hours - Rammed and sunk a 20 tons junk in position 03°47'N, 100°46'E.

1350 hours - Rammed and sunk another 20 tons junk one mile further inshore in only 4 fathoms of water.

1553 hours - Dived in position 03°41'N, 100°48'E. (5)

30 Dec 1944
HMS Trenchant (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSO, DSC, RN) sank a Japanese sailing vessel through ramming in the Malacca Strait.

(All times are zone -6.5)
0325 hours - Sighted a large 50 tons junk at anchor.

0345 hours - Sank the junk by ramming after firing 4 rounds with the deck gun without effect.

0512 hours - Dived in position 02°48'N, 100°14'E. (5)

31 Dec 1944
HMS Trenchant (Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSO, DSC, RN) sank three Japanese sailing vessels in the Malacca Strait.

(All times are zone -6.5)
1139 hours - Surfaced in position 02°51'N, 100°13'E to sink two motor junks. A 30 tons junk was sunk after being set on fire with Oerlikon gunfire. A 20 tons junk, that was being towed by the 30 tons hunk, was sunk through ramming.

1215 hours - Rammed and sunk a 15 tons junk.

1250 hours - 02°51'N, 100°13'E. (5)

4 Jan 1945
While operating together HMS Terrapin (Lt. R.H.H. Brunner, RN) and HMS Trenchant (Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSO, DSC, RN) bombard a Japanese lookout post on Pulau Pandang.

(All times are zone -6.5)
1715 hours - Surfaced in position 03°19'N, 99°45'E and set course for Pulau Padang.

1802 hours - Opened fire on Japanese lookout post. In all 16 rounds were fired.

1832 hours - Withdrew. (5)

10 Jan 1945
HMS Trenchant (Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSO, DSC, RN) ended her 4th war patrol at Trincomalee. (5)

23 Jan 1945
The Japanese tanker Hozan Maru nr. 1 (868 GRT, built 1943) and the Japanese merchant Nikkaku Maru (1946 GRT, built 1943) sank on mines in the Malacca Straits in position 04°08'N, 98°15'E. These mines were laid on 16 September 1944 by HMS Trenchant (Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSO, DSC, RN).

28 Jan 1945
HMS Trenchant (Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSO, DSC, RN) is docked at Trincomalee. The date she undocked is currently not known to us (No logs are available for February - April 1945). (10)

18 Feb 1945
HMS Trenchant (Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSO, DSC, RN) departed from Trincomalee for her 5th war patrol. She was ordered to patrol in the Malacca Straits together with HMS Terrapin (Lt. R.H.H. Brunner, RN).

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


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

24 Feb 1945
While operating together HMS Terrapin (Lt. R.H.H. Brunner, RN) and HMS Trenchant (Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSO, DSC, RN) sink three junks with gunfire in the Strait of Malacca.

Trenchant herself had also sunk one 80 tons coaster and two 20 ton lighters earlier on the day.

(All times are zone -6.5)
0810 hours - Sighted a 80 tons coaster towing two 20 tons leighters.

0825 hours - Surfaced in position 03°57'N, 100°33'E and sank all three with gunfire. In all 15 rounds were fired. 14 survivors were picked up.

0915 hours - While still picking up survivors sighted three coasters inshore. They were Northbound.

0920 hours - Set course to cut the coasters off from the mouth of the Perak river.

0930 hours - All coasters beached themselves.

0952 hours - Stopped in position 03°56'N, 100°39'E and opened fire on the most Northerly coaster. After 87 rounds, for 17 hits, the coaster was still afloat and had not caught fire. Target was now shifted to the second coaster. This one soon burst into flames. 8 rounds were fired for 3 hits. Target was now shifted to the third coaster. This was burst into flames after 4 hits, out of 7 rounds. HMS Terrapin in the meantime had destroyed the first coaster.

1033 hours - Withdrew to seaward and overtook another junk to transfer survivors.

1051 hours - Transferred 8 of the survivors to this junk. Buried another one at sea, he had died from a splinter wounds to a lung. Sighted two enemy aircraft approaching from the south. One of these, an Oscar was attacking HMS Terrapin as she dived. The other one, a Val, attack Trenchant. It was decided to remain on the surface to transfer the remainder of the survivors and fire was opened with the AA guns. The Val turned away. He made two more approaches but was driven off with AA gunfire. When transfer of the survivors was completed Trenchant withdrew into deeper water at full speed.

1107 hours - Both aircraft were now astern and too far off to attack so dived in position 03°55'N, 100°36'E. (5)

25 Feb 1945
HMS Trenchant (Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSO, DSC, RN) makes a torpedo attack on a convoy of coasters in the Malacca Strait in position 03°08'N, 99°57'E. No hits were obtained.

(All times are zone -6.5)
0953 hours - Received an SST report from HMS Terrapin about the sighting of a convoy of coasters escorted by an MTB and an aircraft.

1013 hours - Sighted masts bearing 287°.

1111 hours - In position 03°08'N, 99°57'E fired four torpedoes against a group of three overlapping coasters. One explosion was heard shortly afterwards but this was not thought to be a hit.

1113 hours - Grounded forward in 6.5 fathoms of water. Turned to seaward and withdrew. No counter attack followed by either the MTB nor aircraft. (5)

4 Mar 1945
While operating together HMS Terrapin (Lt. R.H.H. Brunner, RN) and HMS Trenchant (Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, RN) sink the Japanese submarine chaser Ch-8 (offsite link) with gunfire in the Strait of Malacca some 85 miles south of Penang in position 04°04'N, 100°35'E.

Trenchant by herself later also sank a sailing vessel.

(All times are zone -6.5)
1445 hours - Sighted mast and smoke bearing 260°.

1450 hours - Received enemy report on SST from HMS Terrapin. She had sighted a submarine chaser approaching.

1500 hours - Surfaced in position 04°09'N, 100°37'E and closed at full speed. Opened fire at 6000 yards.

1525 hours - The submarine chaser sank. Trenchant had fired 98 rounds.

1630 hours - Dived in position 04°08'N, 100°37'E.

1758 hours - Surfaced in position 04°10N, 100°36'E and sank 30 tons motor junk with 6 rounds.

1808 hours - Dived. (5)

9 Mar 1945
HMS Trenchant (Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSO, DSC, RN) sank a Japanese tug and a barge with gunfire in the Strait of Malacca.

(All times are zone -6.5)
1255 hours - Sighted 20 tons steam tug towing a 40 tons leighter.

1309 hours - Surfaced in position 03°15'N, 99°49'E and sank both with gunfire. 50 rounds in all were used.

1337 hours - Sighted a Betty bomber to the seaward.

1339 hours - Dived in position 03°15'N, 99°48'E. (5)

16 Mar 1945
HMS Trenchant (Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSO, DSC, RN) ended her 5th war patrol at Colombo. (5)

21 Apr 1945
HMS Trenchant (Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSO, DSC, RN) departed from Colombo bound for Fremantle. It is likely Trenchant was docked at Colombo before departure. No log of this period is available. Therefore no map of this passage can be displayed. (11)

5 May 1945
HMS Trenchant (Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSO, DSC, RN) arrived at Fremantle, Australia. (11)

11 May 1945
During 11/12 May 1945, HMS Trenchant (Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSO, DSC, RN), conducted exercises off Fremantle, these included night exercises. (12)

13 May 1945
HMS Trenchant (Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSO, DSC, RN) departed from Fremantle for her 6th war patrol. She was ordered to patrol in the Java Sea. Later she shifts to the South China Sea.

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


HMS Trenchant 6th war patrolclick here for bigger map (5)

25 May 1945
HMS Trenchant (Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSO, DSC, RN) sank the Japanese auxiliary minesweeper Wa 105 (175 tons, former Dutch Grissee) east of Mandalika Island in position 06°23'S, 110°55'E.

(All times are zone -9)
1205 hours - In position 010°, Mandalika lighthouse, 3.3 nautical miles, sighted an eastbound coaster of about 550 tons and one escort vessel bearing 221°, distance 3 nautical miles.

1245 hours - Surfaced in position 031°, Mandalika lighthouse, 3.6 nautical miles to engaged the escort vessel with gunfire from 4000 yards. The escort immediately increased speed and turned towards opening fire with automatic weapons. When range had decreased to 2500 yards a number of hits were scored on the escort resulting in it to decrease speed and turn away. The 4" gun then refused to eject and empty cartridge so Trenchant turned away to clear the gun. Firing with the Oerlikon nonetheless continued. After a few minutes the gun was cleared. The escort was now out of control and on fire abaft the bridge. Fire with the 4" gun was re-opened. Shortly afterwards the enemy was seen to abandon ship.

1302 hours - The escort was now stopped , range was 400 yards. Fired a torpedo from nr.4 tube. The torpedo was set to 4 feet but did not reach this depth due to the short range.

1306 hours - The escort was seen to sink. About 15 survivors were left in the water. In all 115 rounds of 4" were fired. The coaster meanwhile had beached herself. She was taken under fire from 6000 yards but after 12 rounds fire was checked as she proved very difficult to hit at that range and it was considered wise to withdraw to deeper water before aircraft arrived at the scene.

1352 hours - Dived in position 024°, Mandalika lighthouse, 4.4 nautical miles.

1445 hours - Sighted the first aircraft arrive on the scene of the sinking.

The coaster must have been have been the Japanese naval auxiliary Kamisihima Maru (556 GRT, built 1941) (5)

8 Jun 1945
HMS Trenchant (Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSO, DSC, RN) torpedoed and sank the Japanese heavy cruiser Ashigara (13000 tons, offsite link) in the northern entrance of Bangka Straits in position 01°59'1S, 104°57'E.

(All times are zone -9)
0400 hours - A contact report from USS Blueback was received. The report stated that the Japanese heavy cruiser Ashigara and destroyer Kamikaze were sighted northbound from Batavia.

0423 hours - A destroyer (Kamikaze) was spotted approaching. At 0436 hours Trenchant was taken under fire by Kamikaze. One minute later Trenchant fired a stern torpedo against the enemy destroyer. Kamikaze turned away and the torpedo missed.

0616 hours - Cdr. Hezlet positions Trenchant off the minefield at the northern entrance to Banka Strait. At 0702 hours Trenchant dives.

0955 hours - Kamikaze was seen again northbound along the ten fathom on the Sumatra side of Banka Strait. At 1030 Kamikaze was out of sight.

1148 hours - Masts and upper works of a Haguro class heavy cruiser were seen bearing 177, distance 12000 yards, course 330. Position 01°59'3S, 104°58'7E.

1209 hours - A full bow salvo of eight torpedoes was fired. Three minutes later no less than five torpedoes were seen to hit. Trenchants exposed periscope (Cdr. Hezlet's allowed a great number of his crew to have a look through the periscope) was briefly taken under fire by Ashigara's AA guns.

1224 hours - Cdr. Hezlet fires his remaining two stern torpedoes against Ashigara. But as the cruisers manages to get underway briefly on one engine the torpedoed miss. At 1226 hours Kamikaze was seen to close the scene at full speed.

1239 hours - Ashigara was seen to capsize to starboard and sink in position 01°59'1S, 104°57'E.

1241 hours - Kamikaze dropped three patterns of depth charges at least three miles away. (5)

20 Jun 1945
HMS Trenchant (Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSO, DSC, RN) ended her 6th war patrol at Subic Bay, Philippines. (5)

26 Jun 1945
HMS Trenchant (Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSO, DSC, RN) departed from Subic Bay for her 7th war patrol. She is to patrol in the Java Sea.

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


HMS Trenchant 7th war patrolclick here for bigger map (5)

13 Jul 1945
HMS Trenchant (Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSO and Bar, DSC, RN) sank a schooner with gunfire in the Northern part of the Gulf of Boni, Netherlands East Indies in position 02°50'S, 120°33'E.

(All times are zone -9)
1209 hours - A small schooner of about 15 tons was stopped. The native crew abandoned ship as the submarine approached. A boarding party was sent aboard the ship. In the hold they discovered four Japanese soldiers and one officer. When they were ordered out there was no response. The boarding party then tried to smoke them out but now the Japanese opened fire through the hatches and the deck planking. The boarding party was withdrawn and the schooner (with the Japanese still on board) was sunk by gunfire.
(5)

18 Jul 1945
HMS Trenchant (Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSO and Bar, DSC, RN) sank a small submarine chaser, a tug and a barge with gunfire north-east of Lombok Strait in position 08°22'S, 116°02'E. She also bombards a lookout post.

(All times are zone -9)
1153 hours - Surfaced in position 08°24'S, 116°03'E to engage a small submarine chaser with gunfire.

1158 hours - The chaser sank. Opened fire on a tug that had already beached itself.

1229 hours - Ceased fire on the tug that was by now completely wrecked.

1247 hours - Opened fire on a barge.

1303 hours - By now the landing barge was considered destroyed so ceased fire.

1310 hours - Bombarded an observation post on the top of a hill.

1323 hours - Dived for an aircraft in position 08°24'S, 116°02E.

1334 hours - The aircraft dropped a bomb fairly close but no damage was sustained. (5)

25 Jul 1945
HMS Trenchant (Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSO and Bar, DSC, RN) ended her 7th war patrol at Fremantle. (5)

21 Sep 1945
HMS Trenchant (Lt. J.C. Ogle, DSC, RN) departed from Fremantle bound for the U.K. for a refit. The first leg of the trip is to Aden. (11)

12 Oct 1945
HMS Trenchant (Lt. J.C. Ogle, DSC, RN) arrived at Aden. En-route from Fremantle she had suffered engine problems. (11)

15 Oct 1945
HMS Trenchant (Lt. J.C. Ogle, DSC, RN) departed from Aden for Port Said. (11)

21 Oct 1945
HMS Trenchant (Lt. J.C. Ogle, DSC, RN) arrived at Port Said. (11)

23 Oct 1945
HMS Trenchant (Lt. J.C. Ogle, DSC, RN) departed from Port Said bound for Alexandria. (11)

24 Oct 1945
HMS Trenchant (Lt. J.C. Ogle, DSC, RN) arrived at Alexandria. (11)

10 Nov 1945
After some repairs HMS Trenchant (Lt. J.C. Ogle, DSC, RN) departed from Alexandria bound for Malta. (11)

13 Nov 1945
HMS Trenchant (Lt. J.C. Ogle, DSC, RN) arrived at Malta. (11)

16 Nov 1945
HMS Trenchant (Lt. J.C. Ogle, DSC, RN) departed from Malta bound for Gibraltar. (11)

20 Nov 1945
HMS Trenchant (Lt. J.C. Ogle, DSC, RN) arrived at Gibraltar. (11)

21 Nov 1945
HMS Trenchant (Lt. J.C. Ogle, DSC, RN) departed from Gibraltar bound for Portsmouth. (11)

26 Nov 1945
HMS Trenchant (Lt. J.C. Ogle, DSC, RN) arrived at Portsmouth. (11)

Media links


HMS Trenchant

Hazlett, Arthur


The T-class Submarine

Kemp, Paul J.

Sources

  1. ADM 173/19056
  2. ADM 173/19059
  3. ADM 173/19060
  4. ADM 173/19061
  5. ADM 199/1865
  6. ADM 173/19062
  7. ADM 173/19063
  8. ADM 173/19064
  9. ADM 173/19066
  10. ADM 173/19969
  11. ADM 199/2572
  12. ADM 173/19970

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


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