Allied Warships

HMS Campania (D 48)

Escort Carrier of the Campania class

NavyThe Royal Navy
TypeEscort Carrier
ClassCampania 
PennantD 48 
Built byHarland & Wolff Ltd. (Belfast, Northern Ireland) 
Ordered 
Laid down5 Aug 1941 
Launched17 Jun 1943 
Commissioned7 Mar 1944 
End serviceDec 1952 
History

Decommissioned to reserve 30 December 1945. Later recommissioned. After World War Two she was used as a floating exhibition hall on the Thames at the 1951 "Festival of Britain" held at Battersea Park in London. In 1952, she transported equipment and scientists to the Monte Bello atomic bomb tests. Again decommissioned in December 1952. Sold to be broken up for scrap in October 1955 and scrapped at Blyth on 11 November 1955.

 

Commands listed for HMS Campania (D 48)

Please note that we're still working on this section
and that we only list Commanding Officers for the duration of the Second World War.

CommanderFromTo
1A/Capt. Kenneth Albert Short, RN29 Nov 19437 Mar 1945
2Capt. Conrad Byron Alers-Hankey, DSC, RN7 Mar 1945May 1945
3Cdr. James Moffat Robb, RNMay 1945Oct 1945 ?

You can help improve our commands section
Click here to Submit events/comments/updates for this vessel.
Please use this if you spot mistakes or want to improve this ships page.

Notable events involving Campania include:


16 Sep 1944
Rear-Admiral R.R. McGrigor, CB, DSO, RN, transferred his flag from HMS Kent (Capt. G.A.B. Hawkins, DSC, MVO, RN) to HMS Campania (A/Capt. K.A. Short, RN). (1)

4 Oct 1944
The flag of Vice-Admiral F.H.G. Dalrymple-Hamilton, CB, RN, was transferred from HMS Kent (Capt. G.A.B. Hawkins, DSC, MVO, RN) to HMS Diadem (Capt. E.G.A. Clifford, RN).

Following this the flag of Rear-Admiral R.R. McGrigor, CB, DSO, RN, was transferred from HMS Campania (A/Capt. K.A. Short, RN) to HMS Kent. (2)

23 Oct 1944

Operation Hardy.

The object of this operation was to lay air laid mines in Lepsoyrev and Harhamsfiord (west-south-west of Molde) and then to strike enemy shipping between 62°00'N and 64°00'N.

The force for this operation was made up of the heavy cruiser HMS Devonshire (Capt. D.K. Bain, DSO, RN, Senior Officer), escort carriers HMS Trumpeter (A/Capt. K.S. Colquhoun, RN), HMS Campania (A/Capt. K.A. Short, RN), HMS Saumarez (Capt. P.G.L. Cazalet, DSC, RN), HMS Savage (Lt.Cdr. C.W. Malins, DSO, DSC and Bar, RN), HMS Scorpion (Cdr. W.S. Clouston, DSC, RN), HMS Serapis (Lt.Cdr. E.L. Jones, DSC, RN) and HMS Zambesi (Lt.Cdr. W. Scott, DSC and Bar, RN).

The mines successfully laid on the 24th. Some radio / radar stations were destroyed on the shore. Two small Norwegian ships were set on fire and they were then grounded.

No further shipping was attacked as the operation was abandoned owing to the weather conditions.

The force returned to Scapa Flow on 27 October. (3)

30 Nov 1944
The flag of Rear-Admiral R.R. McGrigor, CB, DSO, RN, was transferred from HMS Kent (Capt. G.A.B. Hawkins, DSC, MVO, RN) to HMS Campania (A/Capt. K.A. Short, RN). (4)

13 Dec 1944
German U-boat U-365 was sunk in the Arctic Ocean east of Jan Mayen, in position 70°43'N, 08°07'E, by depth charges from 2 Swordfish aircraft (Sqdn. 813/L/Q) from the British escort carrier HMS Campania (A/Capt. K.A. Short, RN).

18 Dec 1944
The flag of Rear-Admiral R.R. McGrigor, CB, DSO, RN, was transferred from HMS Campania (A/Capt. K.A. Short, RN) to HMS Kent (Capt. G.A.B. Hawkins, DSC, MVO, RN). (5)

5 Feb 1945
Rear-Admiral R.R. McGrigor, CB, DSO, RN, transferred his flag from HMS Norfolk (Capt. J.G.Y. Loveband, RN) to HMS Campania (A/Capt. K.A. Short, RN). (6)

27 Feb 1945
Rear-Admiral R.R. McGrigor, CB, DSO, RN, transferred his flag from HMS Campania (A/Capt. K.A. Short, RN) to HMS Norfolk (Capt. J.G.Y. Loveband, RN). (6)

1 May 1945

Operation Judgement.

The main object of the operastion was the destruction of U-boat depot ships at Kolbotn. The secondary object was to destroy enemy shipping anchored of Sandnesjoen.

The Force deployed for this operation departed Scapa Flow around 1130B/1 and was made up of the heavy cruiser HMS Norfolk (Capt. J.G.Y. Loveband, RN, flying the flag of Vice-Admiral R.R. McGrigor, CB, DSO, RN), light cruiser HMS Diadem (Capt. A.M. Knapp, RN), escort carriers HMS Queen (A/Capt. K.J. D'Arcy, DSO, RN), HMS Searcher (Capt. J.W. Grant, DSO, RN), HMS Trumpeter (A/Capt. K.S. Colquhoun, RN) and the destroyers HMS Carysfort (Lt.Cdr. L.St.G. Rich, DSO and Bar, RN), HMS Zambesi (Lt.Cdr. J.M. Palmer, RN), HMS Savage (Lt.Cdr. C.W. Malins, DSO, DSC and Bar, RN), HMS Scourge (Lt.Cdr. C.G.H. Brown, DSC, RN), HMS Opportune (Cdr. R.E.D. Ryder, VC, RN), Orwell and HMS Obedient (Lt.Cdr. H. Kirkwood, DSC and Bar, RN).

In the early morning of 3 May the destroyers were fuelled by HMS Norfolk, HMS Searcher, HMS Trumpeter and the RFA tanker Blue Ranger (3417 GRT, built 1941) which had also been deployed.

At 1020B/3, the Blue Ranger parted company escorted by HMS Obedient and HMS Orwell. HMS Orwell escorting the Blue Ranger arrived at Scapa Flow on 7 May. HMS Obedient had been detached and already arrived at Scapa Flow on 5 May.

Around 1600B/4, the escort carrier commenced flying off aircraft to attack the German base at Kilbotn, just south of Harstad. During the attacks the depot ships Black Watch (5035 GRT, built 1939) and Senja (858 GRT, built 1938). Also sunk was the submarine U-711 which was alongside the Black Watch. Aircraft involved were eight Avengers and four Wildcats from 846 Squadron in HMS Trumpeter, eight Avengers and four Wildcats from 853 Squadron in HMS Queen, and twenty Wildcats from 882 Squadron in HMS Queen.

By 1809B/4, all aircraft had landed on except for one Avenger and one Wildcat. All crews were lost.

At 0700B/5, HMS Norfolk and HMS Diadem parted company to proceed ahead to Scapa Flow where they arrived around 0800B/6.

The destroyers HMS Carysfort, HMS Zambesi, HMS Savage, HMS Scourge and HMS Opportune also arrived at Scapa Flow, most likely late on the 6th.

The three escort carriers remained at sea and were joined around 2359B/6 by the escort carrier HMS Campania (Capt. C.B. Alers-Hankey, DSC, RN) and the destroyers HMS Obdurate (Lt.Cdr. R.D. Franks, DSO, DSC, OBE, RN), HNoMS Stord (Lt.Cdr. H. Øi) and ORP Piorun (Lt.Cdr. J. Tchorznicki, ORP). (7)

6 May 1945

Operation Cleaver.

Entry of a naval surface force into the Skagerrak and Kattegat.

The following forces took part in this operation;
' Force 5 ' which was made up of the light cruisers HMS Birmingham (Capt. H.W. Williams, RN), HMS Dido (Capt. R.F. Elkins, OBE, RN) and the destroyers HMS Zephyr (Capt. J.H. Allison, DSO and Bar, RN), HMS Zealous (Cdr. R.F. Jessel, DSO, DSC and Bar, RN), HMS Zest (Lt.Cdr. R.B.N. Hicks, DSO, RN) and HMS Zodiac (Lt.Cdr. H.R. Rycroft, DSC, RN).
This force departed Rosyth in the evening of the 6th.

' Force 6 ' which was made up of the heavy cruiser HMS Norfolk (Capt. J.G.Y. Loveband, RN, flying the flag of Vice-Admiral R.R. McGrigor, CB, DSO, RN) and the destroyers HMS Scourge (Lt.Cdr. C.G.H. Brown, DSC, RN, with Capt. P.G.L. Cazalet, DSC, RN on board), HMS Savage (Lt.Cdr. C.W. Malins, DSO, DSC and Bar, RN), HMS Obedient (Lt.Cdr. H. Kirkwood, DSC and Bar, RN), HMS Offa (Lt.Cdr. E.M. Thorpe, DSO, RN), HMS Opportune (Cdr. R.E.D. Ryder, VC, RN), HMS Zambesi (Lt.Cdr. J.M. Palmer, RN) and HMS Carysfort (Lt.Cdr. L.St.G. Rich, DSO and Bar, RN). This force departed Scapa flow early the 7th except to joined the escort carriers HMS Queen (A/Capt. K.J. D'Arcy, DSO, RN), HMS Searcher (Capt. J.W. Grant, DSO, RN), HMS Trumpeter (A/Capt. K.S. Colquhoun, RN) which had still been at sea after operation Judgement together with the escort carrier HMS Campania (Capt. C.B. Alers-Hankey, DSC, RN) and the destroyers HMS Obdurate (Lt.Cdr. R.D. Franks, DSO, DSC, OBE, RN), HNoMS Stord (Lt.Cdr. H. Øi) and ORP Piorun (Lt.Cdr. J. Tchorznicki, ORP). The cruisers and the destroyers joined the escort carriers around 1000B/7.

HMS Campania, HMS Obdurate, HNoMS Stord and ORP Piorun then parted company.

And the 40th Minesweeping Flotilla made up of HMS Catharine (Cdr. Kenneth Hillam Fraser, RN), 6541 HMS Cynthia (T/A/Lt.Cdr. C.L. Chatwin, RNVR), HMS Elfreda (T/A/Lt.Cdr. L. Jolly, RNVR), HMS Grecian (T/A/Cdr. C.R. Fraser, DSC and Bar, RNR) and HMS Gazelle (Lt.Cdr. J.D. Sutcliffe, RN), HMS Maenad (Cdr. C.E. Duggan, RD, RNR), HMS Steadfast (T/A/Lt. A.H. Hall, RNVR) and HMS Tattoo (Lt.Cdr.(Retd.) F.G. Rogers, RD, RNR). They departed Rosyth of the 6th.

Force 5 and the 40th M/S Flotilla arrived at Copenhagen, Denmark on 9 May. The 40th M/S Flotilla swept Force 5 through the minefields.

Force 6 returned to Scapa Flow on 10 May. (7)

Sources

  1. ADM 53/119077 + ADM 53/119638 + ADM 199/1427
  2. ADM 53/119078 + ADM 53/119267 + ADM 53/119639 + ADM 199/1427
  3. ADM 53/119078 + ADM 53/119255 + ADM 53/120648 + ADM 199/1427
  4. ADM 53/119079 + ADM 53/119640
  5. ADM 53/119080 + ADM 53/119641 + ADM 199/1427
  6. ADM 53/121064 + ADM 53/121929 + ADM 199/1440
  7. ADM 199/1440

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


Return to the Allied Warships section