Leslie Swain Saunders DSO, RN

Born  27 Jun 1896
Died  Dec 1988(92)


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Ranks

1 Jan 1915 Mid.
1 Jan 1917 A/S.Lt.
15 Mar 1917 S.Lt.
15 Apr 1918 Lt.
15 Apr 1926 Lt.Cdr.
30 Jun 1932 Cdr.
31 Dec 1937 Capt.

Retired: 8 Jan 1947


Decorations

30 Jul 1942 DSO

Warship Commands listed for Leslie Swain Saunders, RN


ShipRankTypeFromTo
HMS Durban (D 99)Capt.Light cruiser26 Jan 19401 May 1940
HMS Trinidad (46)Capt.Light cruiser15 May 194115 May 1942
HMS Liverpool (11)Capt.Light cruiser4 Jul 194529 Dec 1946

Career information

We currently have no career / biographical information on this officer.

Events related to this officer

Light cruiser HMS Trinidad (46)


3 Oct 1941 (position 0.00, 0.00)
At 1000 hours, HMS Trinidad (Capt. L.S. Saunders, RN) is commisioned with a Devonport crew. (1)

25 Oct 1941 (position 0.00, 0.00)
HMS Trinidad (Capt. L.S. Saunders, RN) conducted D/G trials off Plymouth. (1)

26 Oct 1941 (position 0.00, 0.00)
Around 0800/26, HMS Trinidad (Capt. L.S. Saunders, RN) departed Plymouth for Greenock. She is escorted by the Polish escort destroyer ORP Kujawiak (Lt.Cdr. L. Lichodziejewski).

HMS Trinidad arrived at Greenock around 1230/27. (1)

30 Oct 1941 (position 0.00, 0.00)
HMS Trinidad (Capt. L.S. Saunders, RN) conducted full power trials in the Clyde area. (1)

4 Nov 1941 (position 0.00, 0.00)
HMS Trinidad (Capt. L.S. Saunders, RN) conducted full power trials and aircraft catapult trials in the Clyde area. (2)

6 Nov 1941 (position 0.00, 0.00)
Around 1215/6, HMS Trinidad (Capt. L.S. Saunders, RN), departed Greenock for Scapa Flow where she arrived around 1215/7. (2)

14 Nov 1941
HMS Trinidad (Capt. L.S. Saunders, RN) conducted trials and exercises at Scapa Flow. These included torpedo firing, A/S exercises, turning trials and 4" and 6" gunnery exercises. (2)

18 Nov 1941 (position 0.00, 0.00)
HMS Trinidad (Capt. L.S. Saunders, RN) conducted gunnery exercises off Scapa Flow. (2)

19 Nov 1941 (position 0.00, 0.00)
HMS Trinidad (Capt. L.S. Saunders, RN) conducted gunnery exercises off Scapa Flow. (2)

20 Nov 1941 (position 0.00, 0.00)
HMS Trinidad (Capt. L.S. Saunders, RN) conducted log trials at Scapa Flow. (2)

24 Nov 1941 (position 0.00, 0.00)
HMS Trinidad (Capt. L.S. Saunders, RN) conducted gunnery and torpedo firing exercises off Scapa Flow. (2)

26 Nov 1941
In the late afternoon / early evening HMS Trinidad (Capt. L.S. Saunders, RN) and HMS Arethusa (Capt. A.C. Chapman, RN) conducted RIX (rangefinding and inclination) exercises off Scapa Flow. (2)

27 Nov 1941 (position 0.00, 0.00)
In the afternoon / early evening HMS Duke of York (Capt. C.H.J. Harcourt, CBE, RN) and HMS Trinidad (Capt. L.S. Saunders, RN) conducted RIX (rangefinding and inclination) exercises off Scapa Flow. (3)

29 Nov 1941 (position 0.00, 0.00)
In the morning HMS Trinidad (Capt. L.S. Saunders, RN) carried out aircraft launching and recovery exercises at Scapa Flow followed by 4" gunnery exercises off Scapa Flow. (2)

1 Dec 1941 (position 0.00, 0.00)
HMS Duke of York (Capt. C.H.J. Harcourt, CBE, RN) and HMS Trinidad (Capt. L.S. Saunders, RN) conducted RIX (rangefinding and inclination) exercises off Scapa Flow.

During these exercises HMS Duke of York was escorted by HMS Ashanti (Cdr. R.G. Onslow, RN), HMS Eskimo (Cdr. E.G. Le Geyt, RN) and HMS Matabele (Cdr. A.C. Stanford, DSC, RN). (4)

8 Dec 1941
In the afternoon and early part of the evening HMS Resolution (Capt. A.R. Halfhide, CBE, RN) and HMS Trinidad (Capt. L.S. Saunders, RN) conducted exercises off Scapa Flow. (5)

11 Dec 1941 (position 0.00, 0.00)
Early in the afternoon HMS Trinidad (Capt. L.S. Saunders, RN) departed Scapa Flow for exercises. However she soon returned to Scapa Flow due to the exercises being cancelled. (6)

13 Dec 1941 (position 0.00, 0.00)
HMS Trinidad (Capt. L.S. Saunders, RN) conducted oiling at sea exercises off Scapa Flow with the tanker Gray Ranger. (6)

18 Dec 1941 (position 0.00, 0.00)
HMS Trinidad (Capt. L.S. Saunders, RN) conducted 4" AA gunnery exercises at Scapa Flow. (6)

23 Dec 1941
HMS Trinidad (Capt. L.S. Saunders, RN) conducted D/G trials at Scapa Flow. (6)

27 Dec 1941 (position 0.00, 0.00)
In the morning HMS Trinidad (Capt. L.S. Saunders, RN) conducted gunnery exercises off Scapa Flow. Also the aircraft was launched and recovered.

In the early afternoon an underway refuelling exercise was carried out with HMS Intrepid (Lt.Cdr. J.H. Lewes, DSC, RN) as well as more exercises with the aircraft.

In the afternoon an exercise was carried out with HMS Nigeria (Capt. J.G.L. Dundas, CBE, RN). (6)

30 Dec 1941 (position 0.00, 0.00)
HMS Trinidad (Capt. L.S. Saunders, RN) and HMS Nigeria (Capt. J.G.L. Dundas, CBE, RN) conducted exercises off Scapa Flow. (6)

1 Jan 1942 (position 0.00, 0.00)
HMS Trinidad (Capt. L.S. Saunders, RN) and HMS Nigeria (Capt. J.G.L. Dundas, CBE, RN) conducted exercises off Scapa Flow. (7)

7 Jan 1942 (position 0.00, 0.00)
Around 2100/7, the light cruiser HMS Trinidad (Capt. L.S. Saunders, RN) and the destroyers HMS Somali (Capt. D.K. Bain, RN) and HMS Matabele (Cdr. A.C. Stanford, DSC, RN) departed Scapa Flow to proceed to Seidisfiord where they were to fuel before joining the escort of convoy PQ 8.

They arrived at Seidisfiord around 1030/9. They departed to join the convoy around 1530/10. (8)

8 Jan 1942

Convoy PQ 8.

Convoy PQ 8 departed Hvalfiord on 8 January 1942 and arrived at Archangel on 18 January 1942.

The convoy was made up of the following merchant vessels; British Pride (British (tanker), 7106 GRT, built 1931), British Workman (British (tanker), 6994 GRT, built 1922), Dartford (British, 4093 GRT, built 1930), El Almirante (Panamanian, 5248 GRT, built 1917), Harmatris (British, 5395 GRT, built 1932), Larranga (American, 3804 GRT, built 1917), Southgate (British, 4862 GRT, built 1926) and Stary Bolshevik (Soviet, 3974 GRT, built 1933).

On departure from Hvalfiord the convoy was escorted by the minesweepers HMS Harrier (Cdr. E.P. Hinton, MVO, DSO, RN) and HMS Speedwell (Lt.Cdr. J.J. Youngs, OBE, RNR).

The escort was reinforced around 1000/11 by the light cruiser HMS Trinidad (Capt. L.S. Saunders, RN) and the destroyers HMS Somali (Capt. D.K. Bain, RN) and HMS Matabele (Cdr. A.C. Stanford, DSC, RN) which came from Seidisfiord.

On 16 January the convoy escort was reinforced by a local escort made up of the minesweepers HMS Hazard (Lt.Cdr. J.R.A. Seymour, RN) and HMS Sharpshooter (Lt.Cdr. D. Lampen, RN).

At 1956/16 (time in the logbook of HMS Trinidad, 1846/16 according to German sources) the merchant vessel Harmatris was torpedoed and damaged in position 69°16'N, 36°08'E by a torpedo from the German submarine U-454. A fire could be put out by the crew and she managed to reach her destination assisted by HMS Speedwell and Soviet tugs.

At 2335/16 (time in the logbook of HMS Trinidad, 2321/16 according to German sources), HMS Matabele was hit in the stern by a torpedo from the German submarine U-454. Her aft magazine exploded and she sank in two minutes in position 69°21'N, 35°27'E. When she sank her depth charges exploded. Only four men were picked up from the freezing waters by HMS Harrier but two of them soon died from hypothermia.

The convoy and its escort arrived in the Kola Inlet on the 18th.

24 Jan 1942

Convoy QP 6.

Convoy QP 6 departed Murmansk on 24 January 1942 and was dispersed on 28 January 1942.

The convoy was made up of the following merchant vessels; Aneroid (Panamanian, 5074 GRT, built 1917), Chernyshevski (Russian, 3588 GRT, built 1919), Empire Activity (British, 5335 GRT, built 1919), Empire Howard (British, 6985 GRT, built 1941), Empire Redshank (British, 6615 GRT, built 1919) and Reigh Count (Panamanian, 4657 GRT, built 1907).

On departure from Murmansk the convoy was escorted by the destroyers Gremyashchiy, Sokrushitelny and the minesweepers HMS Harrier (Cdr. E.P. Hinton, MVO, DSO, RN) and HMS Speedwell (Lt.Cdr. J.J. Youngs, OBE, RNR).

The Russian destroyers remained with the convoy until 27 January. The British minesweepers already parted company on the 25th.

In the morning of the 25th the light cruiser HMS Trinidad (Capt. L.S. Saunders, RN), destroyer HMS Somali (Capt. D.K. Bain, RN) and minesweepers HMS Bramble (Capt. J.H.F. Crombie, RN) and HMS Hebe (Lt.Cdr. J.B.G. Temple, DSC, RN) joined the convoy. These ships had departed the Kola Inlet in the afternoon of the 24th.

The convoy was dissolved on the at 0500/28 when in approximate position 73°00'N, 15°00'E.

HMS Somali then proceeded to Seidisfiord, Iceland. HMS Trinidad, HMS Bramble and HMS Hebe proceeded to Scapa Flow.

30 Jan 1942 (position 0.00, 0.00)
Around 1900 hours, HMS Trinidad (Capt. L.S. Saunders, RN), arrived at Scapa Flow after convoy escort duty. (7)

31 Jan 1942 (position 0.00, 0.00)
Around 0600/31, HMS Trinidad (Capt. L.S. Saunders, RN) departed Scapa Flow for Greenock where she was to disembark Polish passengers she had brought back from Northern Russia.

She arrived at Greenock around 0430/1. (9)

4 Feb 1942 (position 0.00, 0.00)
Around 1745/4, HMS Trinidad (Capt. L.S. Saunders, RN) departed Greeock for Scapa Flow where she arrived around 1815/5. (10)

10 Feb 1942 (position 0.00, 0.00)
Around 0700 hours, HMS Trinidad (Capt. L.S. Saunders, RN), departed Scapa Flow to patrol in the Iceland-Faroe passage. (11)

16 Feb 1942 (position 0.00, 0.00)
Around 0900 hours, HMS Trinidad (Capt. L.S. Saunders, RN), arrived at Hvalfiord from patrol. (10)

24 Feb 1942 (position 0.00, 0.00)
Around 2015 hours, HMS Trinidad (Capt. L.S. Saunders, RN) departed Hvalfiord to patrol in the Iceland-Faroe passage. (11)

3 Mar 1942 (position 0.00, 0.00)
Around 2015 hours, HMS Trinidad (Capt. L.S. Saunders, RN) arrived at Scapa Flow from patrol.

While on patrol she had also provided cover for the Rear-Admiral minelaying's Force during minelaying operation SN 85 during 26/27 February. (12)

12 Mar 1942
HMS Trinidad (Capt. L.S. Saunders, RN) departed Scapa Flow to patrol in the Iceland-Faroe passage. (12)

14 Mar 1942
HMS Trinidad (Capt. L.S. Saunders, RN) returned to Scapa Flow from patrol. (12)

21 Mar 1942 (position 0.00, 0.00)
HMS Trinidad (Capt. L.S. Saunders, RN) departed Scapa Flow for Seidisfiord. (12)

22 Mar 1942 (position 0.00, 0.00)
HMS Trinidad (Capt. L.S. Saunders, RN) arrived at Seidisfiord to fuel. (12)

23 Mar 1942 (position 0.00, 0.00)
HMS Trinidad (Capt. L.S. Saunders, RN) departed Seidisfiord to join the escort of convoy PQ 13.

[See the event ' Convoys PQ 13 and QP 9 ' for 20 March 1942 for more info.] (12)

3 Apr 1942
HMS Trinidad (Capt. L.S. Saunders, RN) is docked for temporary repairs at Murmansk. (12)

2 May 1942 (position 0.00, 0.00)
HMS Trinidad (Capt. L.S. Saunders, RN) is undocked at Murmansk. (12)

5 May 1942 (position 0.00, 0.00)
Rear-Admiral S.S. Bonham-Carter, CVO, DSO, RN, hoisted his flag in HMS Trinidad (Capt. L.S. Saunders, RN). (12)


Light cruiser HMS Liverpool (11)


31 Jul 1945 (position 0.00, 0.00)
HMS Liverpool (Capt. L.S. Saunders, DSO, RN) conducted trials off Rosyth. (13)

4 Aug 1945 (position 0.00, 0.00)
HMS Liverpool (Capt. L.S. Saunders, DSO, RN) conducted trials off Rosyth. (14)

7 Aug 1945 (position 0.00, 0.00)
HMS Liverpool (Capt. L.S. Saunders, DSO, RN) conducted trials off Rosyth. (14)

8 Aug 1945 (position 0.00, 0.00)
HMS Liverpool (Capt. L.S. Saunders, DSO, RN) conducted trials off Rosyth. (14)

12 Aug 1945 (position 0.00, 0.00)
HMS Liverpool (Capt. L.S. Saunders, DSO, RN) conducted trials off Rosyth after which she departed for Portland. (14)

14 Aug 1945
HMS Liverpool (Capt. L.S. Saunders, DSO, RN) arrived at Portland where she remained for the remainder of the month. (14)

Media links


Running the Gauntlet

Pearce, Frank

Sources

  1. ADM 53/115125
  2. ADM 53/115126
  3. ADM 53/114154 + ADM 53/115126
  4. ADM 53/115127 + ADM 53/114155
  5. ADM 53/114995 + ADM 53/115127
  6. ADM 53/115127
  7. ADM 53/116698
  8. ADM 53/116698 + ADM 199/429
  9. ADM 53/116698 + ADM 53/116699
  10. ADM 53/116699
  11. ADM 53/116699 + ADM 199/427
  12. ADM 199/427
  13. ADM 53/121686
  14. ADM 53/121687

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


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