Warship forum  
A forum for the Allied Warships section. 
Re: HMS Hilary
Posted by: Frank Luff ()
Date: September 12, 2013 02:19PM


My first ship was on HMS HILARY in 1943, and our first encounter was the Sicily and then the Salerno landings, this ship was the Headquarters for both of these, and as such had many important people visit us aboard the ship.

Now, having read many accounts of HMS HILARY’s naval career, I thought that I, as one of the only two witnesses on board to witness this event, the other being the Captain of the ship – Captain Sir James Padget – I should recall this event.

As you know HMS HILARY then prepared for the Normandy Invasion after those two other events, and when communications were finally set up ashore at Juno Beach we prepared to return to the U.K. but there had been so many acoustic mines dropped around the ship, they had to attach a large tow rope to her so that she could be towed well clear before she could start her engines – which gladly, proved successful. We then proceeded to Spithead, where we moored in the main shipping line mooring. In batches, the crew were sent ashore for two weeks “rest and recuperation” at Pines Camp on the Isle of Wight – and what a dump that was! In the finish there was only a skeleton crew left on board when the following event took place.

It was a pitch black night, and I, as Signalman, was on watch when I saw three lights ahead, one White, one Red and one Green, which meant that a ship was coming straight towards our broadside. I then checked to see if our mooring lights were o.k. – One white light fore and aft – which they were. So I floodlighted the side of the ship with our 20 inch floodlight, but still it came and then rammed us amidships.

As I said earlier, there were only two people on deck at this time, the Captain – Sir James Paget and myself, a Signalman. The troopship,
HMS BRIGADIER, was loaded with troops on its way to Normandy, and it struck us amidships. It penetrated our main .mess deck, which fortunately was empty at the time. Its bow had penetrated three or four feet , Our ship rolled over, and came back, and came back with our upper deck trapped on the top of the BRIGADIER’s bow. It was the only time in my Naval career that I sent an S. O. S. to the Signal Station. Tugs were sent and cables were attached to keep both ships in position of safety until daylight so that the tide would not swing the BRIGADIER and rip our side open.

In the morning they attached wire to our bollards on the port side and one to the stern of the BRIGADIER and pulled, The only thing it did was to pull our bollard out of the deck, The next thing to do was to cut the bow of the BRIGADIER – which they did. The HILARY was then towed into dry dock and patched up to make her seaworthy.

We then sailed up to Inverary where we were paid off, and it was also the end of HMS HILARY’s naval career.

Being the only other witness – other than the Captain, I had to attend a Court of Inquiry, which was held aboard HMS BULOLO – a landing ship H/Q, every day for a week, dressed in my best No: 1’s. but was never called to say my account of events. Then the HILARY was then
patched up and returned to its peacetime owners – the Booth Line.

Signalman Frank Luff
(Served on Hilary 1943 – 1945)

Options: ReplyQuote

Subject Written By Posted
HMS Bulolo Richard Turner 06/08/2005 05:05PM
Re: HMS Bulolo David H 06/08/2005 08:12PM
Re: HMS Bulolo David H 06/08/2005 08:17PM
Re: HMS Bulolo Richard Turner 06/14/2005 03:18PM
Re: HMS Bulolo Mike Holdoway 06/27/2005 05:58AM
Re: HMS Bulolo m boult 05/28/2007 06:59PM
Re: HMS Bulolo MIKE BRANKN 07/02/2007 11:13AM
Re: HMS Bulolo Peter Thomson 07/07/2007 08:20AM
Re: HMS Bulolo Richard Hough 08/03/2007 02:29PM
Re: HMS Bulolo keith whitworth 09/05/2007 07:56PM
Re: HMS Bulolo Alex Tuvey-Smith 11/27/2007 11:31AM
Re: HMS Bulolo Neville Castledine 12/09/2007 10:32AM
Re: HMS Bulolo keith whitworth 12/10/2007 10:39PM
Re: HMS Bulolo peter sankey 12/21/2009 01:19PM
Re: HMS Bulolo stephen fletcher 10/02/2013 09:43PM
Re: HMS Bulolo keith whitworth 10/05/2013 05:52PM
Re: HMS Bulolo Adrian Batten 09/22/2014 01:58AM
Re: HMS Bulolo adrian court 01/29/2008 06:55PM
Re: HMS Bulolo Reg Woollard 11/29/2007 11:04PM
Re: HMS Bulolo reg woollard 11/29/2007 11:32PM
Re: HMS Bulolo David Swindin 07/06/2010 12:42AM
Re: HMS Bulolo Gilbert Summers 12/08/2013 08:28PM
Re: HMS Bulolo amendment Gilbert Summers 01/28/2014 09:57PM
Re: HMS Bulolo Victoria 08/18/2009 01:58PM
Re: HMS Lapwing David Walker 11/30/2012 11:35AM
Re: HMS Lapwing Janet Mortimer 12/10/2012 11:00AM
Re: HMS Lapwing Les Edwards 01/09/2013 09:20PM
Re: HMS Lapwing Les Edwards 01/09/2013 09:28PM
Re: HMS Lapwing Les Edwards 01/09/2013 09:32PM
Re: HMS Bulolo ronald stephens 07/06/2007 12:09AM
Re: HMS Bulolo keith whitworth 09/04/2007 08:57PM
Re: HMS Bulolo KEITH WHITWORTH 09/06/2007 07:58PM
Re: HMS Bulolo keith whitworth 09/09/2007 12:02PM
Re: HMS Bulolo MIKE BRANKIN 12/09/2007 10:50PM
Re: HMS Bulolo MIKE BRANKIN 12/24/2007 09:36AM
Re: HMS Bulolo rust 11/27/2008 11:04AM
Re: HMS Bulolo David Swindin 07/06/2010 01:04AM
Re: HMS Bulolo keith whitworth 07/17/2010 03:26PM
Re: HMS Bulolo keith whitworth 08/29/2010 04:33PM
Re: HMS Bulolo Phyl Wise 02/03/2011 09:33AM
Re: HMS Bulolo Les Hume 03/17/2011 10:25AM
Re: HMS Bulolo Judy wilton 06/27/2014 12:45PM
Re: HMS Bulolo Don warren 06/03/2012 10:22PM
Re: HMS Bulolo adrian court 01/29/2008 05:15PM
Re: HMS Bulolo David Swindin 07/06/2010 12:28AM
Re: HMS Bulolo lorraine elt 06/11/2013 12:31PM
Re: HMS Bulolo steve came 03/30/2015 05:54PM
Re: HMS Bulolo mary vavrosky 04/29/2011 09:42PM
Re: HMS Bulolo Ron Young 12/25/2007 10:00PM
Re: HMS Bulolo Anna Wright 12/27/2007 04:26PM
Re: HMS Bulolo keith whitworth 12/27/2007 05:46PM
Re: HMS Bulolo Stuart Davidson 01/20/2008 07:59PM
Re: HMS Bulolo Peter Browne 02/03/2008 09:21PM
Re: HMS Bulolo reg woollard 02/06/2008 11:37PM
Re: HMS Bulolo JOHN LYNCH 02/17/2008 03:53AM
Re: HMS Bulolo Bob Johnston 04/05/2009 12:46PM
re hms lothian 1943-1946 brenda jackson 10/28/2009 06:07PM
Re: re hms lothian 1943-1946 ian thomson 11/15/2009 07:15PM
Re: re hms lothian 1943-1946 Ian Spring 05/03/2012 11:44AM
Re: re hms lothian 1943-1946 Eddy 06/02/2012 03:56PM
Re: re hms lothian 1943-1946 arthur razzell 03/09/2013 03:34PM
Re: HMS Hilary Dave Morgan 09/25/2010 09:50AM
Re: HMS Hilary Maxine Nelmes 06/05/2013 07:34PM
HMT Macbeth John Winter 11/12/2013 01:38PM
Re: HMS Hilary daniel fisher 06/25/2013 08:40AM
Re: HMS Hilary Frank Luff 09/12/2013 02:19PM
Re: HMS Hilary Natalie Rodgers 05/04/2015 11:41AM
Re: HMS Hilary Sara Radley 11/24/2013 02:02PM
Re: HMS Hilary Dave Morgan 12/30/2013 02:57PM
Re: HMS Hilary Martin Howett 01/12/2014 10:44PM
Re: HMS Hilary N 05/04/2015 11:44AM
Re: HMS Hilary keith whitworth 05/07/2015 11:20AM
Re: HMS Hilary Lynn Trickey 03/27/2014 05:25PM
Re: HMS Hilary Ian Kirkup 04/28/2015 07:55PM
Re: HMS Bulolo MIKE BRANKIN 03/09/2008 10:29AM
Re: HMS Bulolo MIKE BRANKIN 03/09/2008 07:21PM
Re: HMS Bulolo malcolm roberts 04/03/2008 09:12PM
Re: HMS Bulolo Louise 01/23/2012 03:55AM
Re: HMS Bulolo keith whitworth 01/25/2012 10:31PM
Re: HMS Bulolo Judy 02/08/2014 12:17PM
Re: HMS Bulolo Robert Dean 07/24/2008 04:58PM
Re: HMS Bulolo keith whitworth 07/24/2008 08:18PM
Re: HMS Bulolo Robert Dean 07/26/2008 10:51AM
Re: HMS Bulolo Adrian Batten 04/13/2011 02:32PM
Re: HMS Bulolo Gill Parys 11/10/2011 08:41PM
Re: HMS Bulolo keith whitworth 11/11/2011 04:04PM
Re: HMS Bulolo Paul Johnson 02/08/2009 07:28PM
Re: HMS Bulolo Jeff Skea 08/24/2010 12:40AM
Re: HMS Bulolo David Noble 12/14/2010 12:30PM
Re: HMS Bulolo Ian Whitmore 05/18/2011 02:04PM
Re: HMS Bulolo Susan Sørum 08/25/2011 11:51AM
Re: HMS Bulolo keith whitworth 08/26/2011 01:49PM
Re: HMS Bulolo Chris Buhagiar 11/28/2012 01:04AM
Re: HMS Bulolo bob Juniper 01/02/2013 03:13PM
Re: HMS Bulolo suzanne fenlon 10/31/2012 08:50PM
Re: HMS Bulolo rust 11/30/2008 01:12PM
Re: HMS Bulolo Helen Ryan (nee Wheeler) 01/09/2009 05:06AM
Re: HMS Bulolo Jacker1 01/20/2009 09:19AM
Re: HMS Bulolo Clare de Suys 05/30/2009 10:22PM
Re: HMS Bulolo Steve Vause 09/11/2009 08:22AM
Re: HMS Bulolo Keith Green 05/06/2012 06:46PM

Your Name: 
Your Email: 
Spam prevention:
Please, enter the code that you see below in the input field. This is for blocking bots that try to post this form automatically.
 ********  ********   ********  ********        ** 
    **     **     **  **        **              ** 
    **     **     **  **        **              ** 
    **     ********   ******    ******          ** 
    **     **         **        **        **    ** 
    **     **         **        **        **    ** 
    **     **         ********  ********   ******