Allied Warships

HMS Unsparing (P 55)

Submarine of the U class

NavyThe Royal Navy
TypeSubmarine
ClassU 
PennantP 55 
Built byVickers Armstrong (Newcastle-on-Tyne, U.K.) : Davey Paxman & Ricardo 
Ordered12 Jul 1941 
Laid down11 Aug 1941 
Launched28 Jul 1942 
Commissioned29 Nov 1942 
End service 
History

Sold to be broken up for scrap on 14 February 1946. Scrapped at Inverkeithing.

 

Commands listed for HMS Unsparing (P 55)

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CommanderFromTo
1Lt. Aston Dalzell Piper, DSC, RNR28 Aug 194220 Oct 1944
2Lt. John Munro Crosland Fenton, DSC, RN20 Oct 194413 Jun 1945
3Lt. Cecil Robert Peter Charles Branson, RN13 Jun 19458 Sep 1945
4Lt. John Egbert Falls Dickson, RN8 Sep 1945Oct 1945 ?

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Noteable events involving Unsparing include:


31 Aug 1943
HMS Unsparing (Lt. A.D. Piper, DSC and 2 bars, RNR) torpedoed and sank the Italian tanker Flegetonte (1162 GRT) off Bari, Italy in position 41°31'N, 16°57'E.

29 Sep 1943
HMS Unsparing (Lt. A.D. Piper, DSC and 2 bars, RNR) sank a Greek sailing vessel with gunfire off Kythira Island, Greece in position 36°27'N, 23°05'E.

29 Oct 1943
HMS Unsparing (Lt. A.D. Piper, DSC and 2 bars, RNR) torpedoed and sank the German merchant Ingeborg (1160 GRT, former French Ste. Martine) west of the Island of Stampalia, Greece in position 36°33N, 25°54'E.

31 Oct 1943
HMS Unsparing (Lt. A.D. Piper, DSC and 2 bars, RNR) damaged a sailing vessel with gunfire south of Cape Koraxas, Amorgos Island, Greece in position 36°44'N, 25°48'E.

2 Dec 1943
HMS Unsparing (Lt. A.D. Piper, DSC and 2 bars, RNR) sank a Greek sailing vessel with gunfire south of Levitha island, Greece.

15 Jan 1944
HMS Unsparing (Lt. A.D. Piper, DSC and 2 bars, RNR) sank two Greek sailing vessels with gunfire off Lemnos Island, Greece.

19 Feb 1944
HMS Unsparing (Lt. A.D. Piper, DSC and 2 bars, RNR) torpedoed and damaged the German merchant Peter (3754 GRT) in the Aegean north of Skiathos Island in position 39°33'N, 23°22'E.

22 Feb 1944
HMS Unsparing (Lt. A.D. Piper, DSC and 2 bars, RNR) sank the Greek sailing vessel Evangelistria with gunfire off Volos, Greece.

19 May 1944
HMS Unsparing (Lt. A.D. Piper, DSC and 2 bars, RNR) sank two sailing vessels and damaged two others with gunfire off Kos.

21 Jun 1944
HMS Unsparing (Lt. A.D. Piper, DSC and 2 bars, RNR) sank German U-boat chaser UJ 2106 (former Greek minelayer Tenedos), the German barge Sybille (former French Cassion) and the German ferry SF 284 south of Cape Maleas, Greece.

At 1603 hours (time zone -2) while in position 36°31'5N, 23°12'7E HMS Unsparing spots three Arado 196 seaplanes and shortly afterwards a convoy of one UJ boat, one motor lighter and one siebel ferry came into view.

The leighter was close astern of the UJ boat and the siebel ferry was about 3/4 to one nautical mile astern of the leighter. Lt. Piper decided to attack the UJ boat and the leighter with a salvo of four torpedoes from his bow tubes.

At 1641 hours four torpedoes were fired from about 1500 yards. Two torpedoes were aimed at the UJ boat and two at the leighter. Two torpedoes were heard to explode. These explosions were followed by a considerable number of heavy and violent explosions. Lt. Piper first thought that they were being depth charges but i became clear that it were the depth charges that were exploding as the UJ boat was sinking.

At 1652 hours Unsparing returned to periscope depth and saw the siebel ferry picking up survivors. There was no sign of the UJ boat and the leighter.

At 1655 hours one torpedo reload was ordered and by 1711 hours no.4 tube was ready. A cat and mouse game with the siebel ferry started. Each time when Unsparing was in attack position it started its engines to pick up more survivors a small distance away. Also the aircraft were still circling low but they were most likely unable to see the submarine as they took no offensive action.

At 1740 hours the siebel ferry started up both engines again and started to make off to Monemvasia. Two minutes later Lt. Piper fired the torpedo in no.4 tube that was seen to hit the siebel ferry aft. This did however not sink it !, but its motive power was finished.

Another torpedo reload was ordered that was completed in 11 minutes. At 1907 hours this torpedo was fired that was seen to explode with a terrific flash and the target disintegrated.

Lt. Piper did not pick up any survivors as prisoners of war because the aircraft were still overhead.


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