Allied Warships

HMS Gurkha (ii) (G 63)

Destroyer of the L class

NavyThe Royal Navy
PennantG 63 
Built byCammell Laird Shipyard (Birkenhead, U.K.) 
Ordered31 Mar 1938 
Laid down18 Oct 1938 
Launched8 Jul 1940 
Commissioned18 Feb 1941 
Lost17 Jan 1942 
Loss position31° 50'N, 26° 15'E

Originally named HMS Larne, renamed after the loss of the Tribal-class destroyer HMS Gurkha (i).

At 0735hours on 17 January 1942, HMS Gurkha (Cdr. Charles Nugent Lentaigne, DSO, RN) was hit by one torpedo from the German submarine U-133 and caught fire from bow to stern. The Dutch destroyer HrMs Isaac Sweers towed the destroyer clear of the burning oil on the surface. Most crew members were then transferred to the Dutch destroyer by boats and were landed at Tobruk in the evening. The burning destroyer had to be scuttled north of Sidi Barrani in position 31º50'N, 26º15'E.

HMS Gurkha had been escorting the Malta convoy MW-8B (four fast transports covered by Admiral Vian´s Mediterranean Fleet cruiser force), which arrived Malta on 19 January without further casualties.  

Hit by U-boat
Sunk on 17 Jan 1942 by U-133 (Hesse).

U-boat AttackSee our U-boat attack entry for the HMS Gurkha (ii)
Former nameHMS Larne

Commands listed for HMS Gurkha (ii) (G 63)

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1Cdr. Charles Nugent Lentaigne, RN29 Oct 194017 Jan 1942

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Notable events involving Gurkha (ii) include:

29 Sep 1941
At 0617hours on 29 September 1941, HMS Gurkha got a radar contact with the surfaced Italian submarine Diaspro (offsite link) in position 37°32'N, 06°45'E and was shortly thereafter missed by two torpedoes, which passed under the destroyer. Together with the Dutch destroyer HrMs Isaac Sweers, she engaged the submarine, but without result. The destroyers were part of the Force H (Adm. Somerville), returning from escorting a Malta convoy during Operation Halberd.

30 Sep 1941
Around 1030hours on 30 September 1941 the Italian submarine Adua (offsite link) was sunk north-west of Algiers in position 37°10'N, 00°56'E by the British destroyers HMS Gurkha (Cdr. C.N. Lentaigne, RN) and HMS Legion (Cdr. R.F. Jessel, RN).

Media links

U-Boat Attack Logs

Daniel Morgan and Bruce Taylor

British destroyers & frigates

Norman Friedman

Destroyers of World War Two

Whitley, M. J.

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