John Symons Huddart, RN

Born  18 Feb 1911
Died  Jan 1942(30)HMS Triumph (i) (N 18)


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Ranks

1 Nov 1931 S.Lt.
1 Mar 1934 Lt.

Decorations

Warship Commands listed for John Symons Huddart, RN


ShipRankTypeFromTo
HMS H 44 (N 44)Lt.Submarine11 Aug 194019 Oct 1940
HMS L 27 (N 27)Lt.Submarine24 Oct 194011 Jan 1941
HMS H 34 (N 34)Lt.Submarine14 Jan 19417 Mar 1941
HMS H 43 (N 43)Lt.Submarine7 Mar 194114 Apr 1941
HMS Proteus (N 29)Lt.Submarine15 Apr 194115 May 1941
HMS Triumph (i) (N 18)Lt.Submarine8 Nov 194114 Jan 1942

Career information

John Huddart was born on 18 February 1911. He joined submarines on 1st January 1934. He joined the submarine Orpheus on the China Staion in July 1935. He did his Commanding Officers course in April 1940.

Events related to this officer

Submarine HMS H 44 (N 44)


13 Aug 1940
HMS H 44 (Lt. J.S. Huddard, RN) departed Harwich for her 7th war patrol. She was ordered to patrol in the North Sea.

For the daily positions of HMS H 44 during this patrol see the map below.

(1)

17 Aug 1940 (position 0.00, 0.00)
HMS H 44 (Lt. J.S. Huddard, RN) ended her 7th war patrol at Harwich. (2)

23 Aug 1940
HMS H 44 (Lt. J.S. Huddard, RN) departed Harwich for her 8th war patrol. She was ordered to patrol in the North Sea.

For the daily positions of HMS H 44 during this patrol see the map below.

(1)

31 Aug 1940 (position 0.00, 0.00)
HMS H 44 (Lt. J.S. Huddard, RN) ended her 8th war patrol at Harwich. (2)

17 Sep 1940
HMS H 44 (Lt. J.S. Huddard, RN) departed Harwich for her 9th war patrol. She was ordered to patrol in the North Sea.

For the daily positions of HMS H 44 during this patrol see the map below. [No position is currently known to us for 23 September 1940.]

(1)

26 Sep 1940 (position 0.00, 0.00)
HMS H 44 (Lt. J.S. Huddard, RN) ended her 9th war patrol at Harwich. (3)

5 Oct 1940 (position 0.00, 0.00)
HMS H 44 (Lt. E.D. Norman, RN) departed Harwich for Rosyth. She made a passage in a convoy.

At 1725 hours the convoy (or HMS H 44) was attacked by enemy aircraft. (4)

7 Oct 1940 (position 0.00, 0.00)
HMS H 44 (Lt. E.D. Norman, RN) arrived at Rosyth for special trials. (4)

16 Oct 1940 (position 0.00, 0.00)
HMS H 44 (Lt. E.D. Norman, RN) conducted special trials / exercises off Rosyth. (4)


Submarine HMS Triumph (i) (N 18)


20 Nov 1941
HMS Triumph (Lt. J.S. Huddart, RN) departed from Alexandria for her 20th war patrol. She is to patrol in the Aegean and to perform a special operation. Later she was ordered to shift patrol to the West coast of Greece.

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

(5)

23 Nov 1941
HMS Triumph (Lt. J.S. Huddart, RN) landed agents (including Chris M. Woodhouse) at Caruba Bay (west of Candia). (5)

24 Nov 1941
HMS Triumph (Lt. J.S. Huddart, RN) torpedoed and sank the Italian tug/salvage vessel Hercules (632 GRT, built 1910) and the tug Irini Vernikos inside Candia (Iraklion) harbour, Crete. The explosion of the torpedo caused also some damage to the German merchant Norburg (2392 GRT, built 1922), that was being salvaged at the time, and to the Arkadia (1756 GRT, built 1927) behind her.

Triumph also bombards the airport at Heraklion.

(All times are zone -2)
1141 hours - Closed Candia harbour to 3500 yards from the breakwater. In the harbour were 2 merchant ships of 3000 and 1500 tons secured to the mole.

1144 hours - Fired one torpedo against the 3000 tons merchant vessel But the torpedo was observed to hit a small vessel, thought to be an armed trawler, that was alongside the 1500 tons merchant vessel that was moored just astern of the 3000 tons vessel. The 'trawler' was seen to settle by the stern immediately.

A second torpedo was now fired against the 3000 tons merchant ship but it ran to the left and exploded at the far end of the harbour.

Triumph now left the area as air patrol were expected to arrive soon now.

--------------------------------------------

1803 hours - Surfaced and set course towards the airport.

1822 hours - Opened fire with the 4" gun from 3500 yards. Shells were seen to explode along the line of the aerodrome and the gun emplacements. It was not possible to note if any damage was caused.

1825 hours - Ceased fire after 14 rounds. Cleared the area at high speed on the surface to the North-East. (5)

27 Nov 1941
Late in the evening HMS Triumph (Lt. J.S. Huddart, RN) was ordered (by signal) to patrol in the South-West Aegean. Shortly afterwards this is changed to the Ionian Sea off Navarinon on the West coast of Greece as the Italian battle fleet was at sea. For the next few days Triumph was ordered to several patrol positions in the Ionian Sea to intercept the Italian battle fleet. (5)

1 Dec 1941
HMS Triumph (Lt. J.S. Huddart, RN) was ordered to patrol off Navarinon. (5)

11 Dec 1941
HMS Triumph (Lt. J.S. Huddart, RN) ended her 20th war patrol at Alexandria. (5)

18 Dec 1941
At Alexandria HMS Triumph (Lt. J.S. Huddart, RN) and HMS Trusty (Lt.Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) were brought alongside either side of the damaged battleship HMS Queen Elizabeth (Capt. C.B. Barry, DSO, RN) to provide electricity for the salvage operations. Trusty leaves after a few hours but Triumph remains alongside until 22 December.

26 Dec 1941
HMS Triumph (Lt. J.S. Huddart, RN) departed Alexandria for her 21th war patrol. She is to patrol in the Aegean and to perform special operation ISINGLASS.

30 Dec 1941
HMS Triumph (Lt. J.S. Huddart, RN) reported by signal a successful first part of the special operation. Captain G. Atkinson, Lt. J.W.C. Craig (both from MI9) and ISLD wireless operator Diamantís Arvanitopoulos (code name DIAMOND) are landed at Antiparos. Triumph was supposed to pick them up with a party of stragglers who are being rounded up again on 9 January 1942 but she failed to show up at the rendezvous. The special operation will turn sour when the whole party will be captured by the Italians. Atkinson who has also offered his services to SOE (without disclosing it to MI9) will be found with a list of the principal personalities of the Greek Resistance on him. A list he should have memorized and destroyed. This will enable the Italian police to arrest several of them. In 1943, Atkinson, who has murdered an Italian officer, will be executed with Arvanitopoulos and Greeks who have sheltered them.

4 Jan 1942
The mystery of the disappearance of HMS Triumph has so far never been solved. At 1450 hours on 4 January 1942, in position 36°07'N, 24°14'E, the motor cutter Sofia of Panigaglia Netzsperrverband reports missed by a torpedo wake. This could have been HMS Triumph but the attack is possibly bogus.

Two days later, a submarine was sighted South-East of Milos and at 1145 hours on 9 January, the tug Taxiarchis towing the large lighter Rhea reports being missed by a torpedo near Cape Sunion. Again this could be HMS Triumph but the attack could also be bogus.

It is however surprising that Axis convoys in these waters do not report any attack; neither the German submarine U-97 who rounded Cape Sunion on the surface a few hours after Taxiarchis and Rhea.

We cannot discount the possibility of an accidental loss (the weather was very rough during this period) or the possibility that the submarine was lost on one of the four minefields laid a few weeks earlier by the Italian auxiliary minelayer Barletta in the approaches to Piraeus. Lt. J.S. Huddart and his crew of 6 officers and 55 ratings were lost with HMS Triumph.

Sources

  1. ADM 199/1829
  2. ADM 173/16320
  3. ADM 173/16321
  4. ADM 173/16322
  5. ADM 199/1153

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


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