Allied Warships

HMS Helford (K 252)

Frigate of the River class

NavyThe Royal Navy
PennantK 252 
Built byHall, Russell & Co. Ltd. (Aberdeen, Scotland) : Yarrow Shipbuilders Ltd. (Scotstoun, Scotland) 
Ordered1 Jan 1942 
Laid down27 Jun 1942 
Launched6 Feb 1943 
Commissioned26 Jun 1943 
End service 

Scrapped 29 June 1956.


Commands listed for HMS Helford (K 252)

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and that we only list Commanding Officers for the duration of the Second World War.

1Cdr. Charles George Cuthbertson, DSC, RNR26 Jul 1943early 1946

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Notable events involving Helford include:

9 Aug 1944

Combined convoys AB 43 / ABK 43.

They departed Aden on 9 August 1943.

Convoy AB 43.

This convoy was made up of the following (troop) transports;
City of Capetown (British, 8046 GRT, built 1937), Clan Cameron (British, 7243 GRT, built 1937), Clan Campbell (British, 9545 GRT, built 1943), Dunnottar Castle (British, 15007 GRT, built 1936), Glaucus (British, 7596 GRT, built 1921), Johan van Oldenbarnevelt (Dutch, 19429 GRT, built 1930), Mooltan (British, 20952 GRT, built 1923), Strathaird (British, 22281 GRT, built 1932), Strathnaver (British, 22283 GRT, built 1931) and Tegelberg (Dutch, 14150 GRT, built 1937).

The submarine depot ship HMS Wolfe (A/Capt. J.E. Slaughter, DSO, RN) was also part of the convoy.

On departure from Aden the convoy was escorted by the destroyers i>HMAS Norman (Cdr. H.J. Buchanan DSO, RAN), HMS Penn (Lt.Cdr. J.H. Swain, DSO, DSC, RN) and the frigates HMS Halladale (Lt.Cdr. J.E. Woolfenden, RD, RNR), HMS Helford (Cdr. C.G. Cuthbertson, DSC, RNR) and HMS Trent (T/A/Lt.Cdr. J.G. Rankin, DSC, RNR).


Convoy ABK 43.

This convoy was made up of the following troop transports;
Highland Chieftain (British, 14135 GRT, built 1929), Indrapoera (Dutch, 10825 GRT, built 1925) and Moreton Bay (British, 14193 GRT, built 1921).

On departure from Aden the convoy was escorted by the frigates HMS Tay (Lt.Cdr. R.E. Sherwood, RNR) and HMS Kale (Lt.Cdr. G.W. Houchen, OBE, RD, RNR).


The convoys proceeded in company until 12 August when convoy ABK 43 was detached (in approximate position 16°40'N, 61°53'E) to Karachi where it arrived on 14 August.

Convoy AB 43 arrived at Bombay also on 14 August.

25 Aug 1944
On 25 August 1944, the troopship Dunnottar Castle (British, 15007 GRT, built 1936) departed Colombo for Melbourne. She was escorted by the destroyer HMAS Quickmatch (Lt.Cdr. O.H. Becher, DSC, RAN) and the frigate HMS Helford (Cdr. C.G. Cuthbertson, DSC, RNR).

On the same day the submarine depot ship HMS Maidstone (Capt. L.M. Shadwell, RN) and the escort carrier HMS Atheling (A/Cdr. H.L. Oliver, RN) departed Trincomalee for Fremantle and Mauritius respectively. They were escorted by the light cruiser HMS Nigeria (Capt. H.A. King, DSO, RN, flying the flag of Rear-Admiral A.D. Read, CB, RN) and the destroyer HMAS Norman (Cdr. H.J. Buchanan DSO, RAN) and HMAS Nizam (Cdr. C.H. Brooks, RAN).

HMAS Norman however soon returned to harbour after the destroyers HrMs Van Galen (Cdr. F.T. Burghard, RNethN) and HMS Pathfinder (Lt.Cdr. T.F. Hallifax, RN), which had already been at sea, had joined.

These two groups made rendezvous around 1845FG(-6.5)/26. HMAS Quickmatch was then detached to return to Colombo.

At 0030FG/29, HMAS Nizam, HrMS Van Galen and HMS Pathfinder parted company. HMAS Nizam and HMS Pathfinder returned to Trincomalee while HrMs Van Galen proceeded to Colombo. They all arrived on 31 August 1944.

At 0045FG/29, HMS Atheling and HMS Helmford parted company.

This left the Dunnottar Castle and HMS Maidstone proceeding towards Australia escorted by HMS Nigeria.

At 1330H/4, the Dunnottar Castle parted company to proceed to Melbourne.

HMS Maidstone and HMS Nigeria arrived at Fremantle around noon on the 5th.

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