Allied Warships

HMS United (P 44)

Submarine of the U class

NavyThe Royal Navy
TypeSubmarine
ClassU 
PennantP 44 
ModThird Group 
Built byVickers Armstrong (Barrow-in-Furness, U.K.) 
Ordered23 Aug 1940 
Laid down25 Feb 1941 
Launched18 Dec 1941 
Commissioned2 Apr 1942 
End service22 Oct 1945 
History

Decommissioned into Reserve on 22 October 1945. Scrapped at Troon on 12 February 1946.

 

Commands listed for HMS United (P 44)

Please note that we're still working on this section.

CommanderFromTo
1Lt. Thomas Erasmus Barlow, RN11 Jan 19427 Dec 1942
2Lt. John Charles Young Roxburgh, DSC, RN7 Dec 194230 Dec 1943
3Lt. Norman Richard Wood, RN30 Dec 194322 Jul 1944
4Lt. Martin Douglas Hutley, RNR22 Jul 194422 Oct 1945

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Notable events involving United include:


The history of HMS P 44 / HMS United as compiled on this page is extracted from the patrol reports and logbooks of this submarine. Corrections and details regarding information from the enemy's side (for instance the composition of convoys attacked) is kindly provided by Mr. Platon Alexiades, a naval researcher from Canada.

This page was last updated in February 2018.

1 Apr 1942
HMS P 44 (Lt. T.E. Barlow, RN) and HMS P 615 (Lt.Cdr. W.S. Hall, RN) departed their builders yard at Barrow for Holy Loch. They were escorted by HrMs Jan van Gelder (Lt. P.L.M. van Geen, RNN). (1)

2 Apr 1942
HMS P 44 (Lt. T.E. Barlow, RN) arrived at Holy Loch to begin a period of trials and training. (1)

4 Apr 1942
HMS P 44 (Lt. T.E. Barlow, RN) conducted independent exercises in the Clyde area. (1)

5 Apr 1942
HMS P 44 (Lt. T.E. Barlow, RN) conducted independent exercises in the Clyde area. (1)

7 Apr 1942
HMS P 44 (Lt. T.E. Barlow, RN) proceeded from Holy Loch to Arrochar. (1)

8 Apr 1942
HMS P 44 (Lt. T.E. Barlow, RN) conducted torpedo discharge trials off Arrochar. (1)

9 Apr 1942
HMS P 44 (Lt. T.E. Barlow, RN) conducted torpedo discharge trials off Arrochar. (1)

10 Apr 1942
HMS P 44 (Lt. T.E. Barlow, RN) proceeded from Arrochar to Holy Loch. (1)

12 Apr 1942
HMS P 44 (Lt. T.E. Barlow, RN) conducted independent exercises in the Clyde area. (1)

14 Apr 1942
HMS P 44 (Lt. T.E. Barlow, RN) conducted attack exercises in the Clyde area with HMS Breda (Capt.(Retd.) A.E. Johnston, RN) serving as the target. (1)

15 Apr 1942
HMS P 44 (Lt. T.E. Barlow, RN) conducted attack exercises in the Clyde area with HMS Breda (Capt.(Retd.) A.E. Johnston, RN) serving as the target. (1)

16 Apr 1942
HMS P 44 (Lt. T.E. Barlow, RN) proceeded from Holy Loch to Ardrossan. (1)

17 Apr 1942
HMS P 44 (Lt. T.E. Barlow, RN) is docked at Ardrossan for a propeller change. (1)

18 Apr 1942
HMS P 44 (Lt. T.E. Barlow, RN) is undocked and then immediately proceeded from Ardrossan to Holy Loch. (1)

19 Apr 1942
HMS P 44 (Lt. T.E. Barlow, RN) conducted independent exercises in the Clyde area. (1)

23 Apr 1942
HMS P 44 (Lt. T.E. Barlow, RN) conducted independent exercises in the Clyde area. (1)

24 Apr 1942
HMS P 44 (Lt. T.E. Barlow, RN) conducted independent exercises in the Clyde area. (1)

25 Apr 1942
HMS P 44 (Lt. T.E. Barlow, RN) conducted gunnery exercises in the Clyde area. (1)

27 Apr 1942
HMS P 44 (Lt. T.E. Barlow, RN) conducted attack exercises in the Clyde area with HMS Orion (Capt. G.C.P. Menzies, RN) serving as the target. (1)

29 Apr 1942
HMS P 44 (Lt. T.E. Barlow, RN) departed Holy Loch for Gibraltar. Passage south through the Irish Sea was made together with HMS H 43 (Lt. F.D.G. Challis, DSC, RN). They were escorted by HMS White Bear (Cdr.(Retd.) C.C. Flemming, RN).

For the daily and attack positions of HMS P 44 during this passage see the map below.

(2)

1 May 1942
At 1930 hours, HMS P 44 (Lt. T.E. Barlow, RN), parted company with her escort HMS White Bear (Cdr.(Retd.) C.C. Flemming, RN) in position 270°, Wolf Rock, 4 nautical miles. (2)

7 May 1942
HMS P 44 (Lt. T.E. Barlow, RN) attacked the inbound German submarine U-157 about 220 nautical miles north-west of Cape Finisterre, Spain in position 45°06'N, 12°58'W. Four torpedoes were fired but no hits were obtained.

(All times are zone -1)
1546 hours - Sighted an eastbound enemy submarine at a range of 3000 yards on the starboard quarter. Started attack.

1552 hours - Fired a salvo of four torpedoes from 5000 yards. No hits were obtained.

[The Germans reported four torpedo tracks and were able to evade them. The attack was however reported in German Grid BE 3424, approximately 49°57'N, 15°25'W, which is probably in error]. (2)

11 May 1942
HMS P 44 (Lt. T.E. Barlow, RN) arrived at Gibraltar. She was escorted in by HMS Leyland (T/Lt. A.K. Nears, RNR). (2)

16 May 1942
HMS P 44 (Lt. T.E. Barlow, RN) was docked in No.3 dock at Gibraltar. (3)

19 May 1942
HMS P 44 (Lt. T.E. Barlow, RN) was undocked. (3)

21 May 1942
P 44 (Lt. T.E. Barlow, RN) conducted exercises off Gibraltar together with HMS Wrestler (Lt. R.W.B. Lacon DSC, RN) and HMS Partridge (Lt.Cdr. W.A.F. Hawkins, DSC, OBE, RN). (3)

22 May 1942
P 44 (Lt. T.E. Barlow, RN) conducted exercises off Gibraltar together with HMS Coltsfoot (Lt.Cdr. the Hon. W.K. Rous, RNVR) and HMS Geranium (T/Lt. A. Foxall, RNR). (3)

24 May 1942
HMS P 44 (Lt. T.E. Barlow, RN) departed Gibraltar for her 1st war patrol (also 1st in the Mediterranean). She was ordered to patrol in the Alboran Sea. This was a work-up patrol.

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

(2)

31 May 1942
HMS P 44 (Lt. T.E. Barlow, RN) ended her 1st war patrol (also 1st in the Mediterranean) at Gibraltar. (2)

4 Jun 1942
HMS P 44 (Lt. T.E. Barlow, RN) departed Gibraltar for her 2nd war patrol (also 2nd in the Mediterranean). She was ordered to patrol between Sardinia and Sicily, one of several submarines deployed to cover operation Harpoon.

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

(4)

24 Jun 1942
HMS P 44 (Lt. T.E. Barlow, RN) ended her 2nd war patrol (also 2nd in the Mediterranean) at Gibraltar. (4)

10 Jul 1942
HMS P 44 (Lt. T.E. Barlow, RN) departed Gibraltar for Malta.

For the daily positions of HMS P 44 during this passage see the map below.

(5)

21 Jul 1942
HMS P 44 (Lt. T.E. Barlow, RN) arrived at Malta. (5)

1 Aug 1942
HMS P 44 (Lt. T.E. Barlow, RN) departed Malta for her 3rd war patrol (also 3rd in the Mediterranean). She was ordered to patrol off Kuriat.

For the daily and attack positions of HMS P 44 during this patrol see the map below.

(5)

2 Aug 1942
HMS P 44 (Lt. T.E. Barlow, RN) attacked a merchant vessel with four torpedoes in approximate position 35°40'N, 12°18'E. The target was then engaged with the gun but the action had to be broken off after two hits had been obtained. This was the Italian auxiliary F 64 / Petsamo (305 GRT, built 1924) travelling from Lampedusa to Pantelleria. As she opened fire on the submarine, five crew members and a German passenger escaped in a lifeboat. They were later picked up by the Italian torpedo boat Circe and were prosecuted for dereliction of duty.

(All times are zone -2)
2230 hours - Sighted smoke bearing 040°. Altered course to investigate.

2250 hours - The contact was seen to be a vessel of 2000 to 3000 tons on a course of 275°. Range was closed as fast as possible.

2320 hours - Range was now 3000 yards. Fired torpedoes, three were intended but due to an error in drill all four tubes were in fact fired. An explosion was heard after 5m 20s after firing the first torpedo but all should have crossed the target line long before this. It is thought all torpedoes missed ahead of the target. As the enemy did not appear to have noticed the attack it was closed to 2000 yards and fire was then opened with the gun.

After two hits had been scored the vessel altered towards and also opened fire. This gunfire was at first wildly. It now appeared that the vessel might be a trawler or auxiliary vessel ant it seemed prudent to break off the engagement.

2345 hours - Broke off the action and dived. Immediately started reloading the torpedo tubes. HE was heard for 30 minutes but then faded out. (5)

3 Aug 1942
HMS P 44 (Lt. T.E. Barlow, RN) attacked an escorted merchant vessel off Kuriat. Four torpedoes were fired but no hits were obtained. The target has not yet (August 2016) been identified.

(All times are zone -2)
2220 hours - Sighted the lights of a vessel on a northerly course steering up from south of Kuriat Island and 6 nautical miles from the shore. 10 Minutes later she was seen to be accompanied by a second vessel. When north of Kuriat they altered course to the west. It might be that they were Vichy-French but they were now outside territorial waters and travelling at night so it was decided to attack.

2340 hours - Fired a salvo of four torpedoes at the target, by now seen to be a merchant vessel of about 7000 tons escorted by a torpedo-boat. No hits were obtained. The torpedo-boat boat then swiched on a searchlight so P 44 dived. (5)

5 Aug 1942
HMS P 44 (Lt. T.E. Barlow, RN) ended her 3rd war patrol (also 3rd in the Mediterranean) at Malta. (5)

9 Aug 1942
HMS P 44 (Lt. T.E. Barlow, RN) departed Malta for her 4th war patrol (also 4th in the Mediterranean). She was ordered to patrol south of Lampedusa. Later she was to form part of a line with HMS P 222 (Lt.Cdr. A.J. MacKenzie, RN), HMS P 31 (Lt. J.B.de B. Kershaw, DSO, RN), HMS P 34 (Lt. P.R.H. Harrison, DSC, RN), HMS P 46 (Lt. J.S. Stevens, DSC, RN) and HMS Utmost (Lt. A.W. Langridge, RN). They provided cover during the passage of the Pedestal convoy.

For the daily and attack positions of HMS P 44 during this patrol see the map below.

(5)

10 Aug 1942

Convoy WS 21S, Operation Pedestal.

Convoy WS 21S and the concentration of the escort forces

Convoy WS 21S departed the Clyde on 2 August 1942. The convoy was made up of the following ships;
American freighters;
Almeria Lykes (7773 GRT, built 1940), Santa Elisa (8379 GRT, built 1941), British freighters;
Brisbane Star (12791 GRT, built 1937), Clan Ferguson (7347 GRT, built 1938), Deucalion (7516 GRT, built 1930), Dorset (10624 GRT, built 1934), Empire Hope (12688 GRT, built 1941), Glenorchy (8982 GRT, built 1939), Melbourne Star (11076 GRT, built 1936), Port Chalmers (8535 GRT, built 1933), Rochester Castle (7795 GRT, built 1937), Waimarama (12843 GRT, built 1938), Wairangi (12436 GRT, built 1935), and the American tanker;
Ohio (9264 GRT, built 1940).

These ships were escorted by light cruisers HMS Nigeria (Capt. S.H. Paton, RN, flying the flag of the Rear-Admiral 10th C.S., Sir H.M. Burrough, CB, DSO, RN), HMS Kenya (Capt. A.S. Russell, RN) and the destroyers HMS Wishart (Cdr. H.G. Scott, RN), HMS Venomous (Cdr. H.W. Falcon-Stewart, RN), HMS Wolverine (Lt.Cdr. P.W. Gretton, OBE, DSC, RN), HMS Malcolm (A/Cdr. A.B. Russell, RN), HMS Amazon (Lt.Cdr.(Emgy) Lord Teynham, RN), HMS Derwent (Cdr. R.H. Wright, DSC, RN) and HMS Zetland (Lt. J.V. Wilkinson, RN).

A cover force made up of departed Scapa Flow on the same day. This force was made up of the battleships HMS Nelson (Capt. H.B. Jacomb, RN, flying the flag of Vice-Admiral E.N. Syfret, CB, RN) and HMS Rodney (Capt. J.W. Rivett-Carnac, DSC, RN). They were escorted by the destroyers HMS Ashanti (Cdr. R.G. Onslow, DSO, RN), HMS Eskimo (Cdr. E.G. Le Geyt, RN), HMS Somali (Cdr. E.N.V. Currey, DSC, RN), HMS Tartar (Cdr. St.J.R.J. Tyrwhitt, DSC, RN), HMS Pathfinder (Cdr. E.A. Gibbs, DSO and Bar, RN), HMS Penn (Lt.Cdr. J.H. Swain, RN) and HMS Quentin (Lt.Cdr. A.H.P. Noble, DSC, RN). They were to rendez-vous with convoy WS 21S at sea on 3 August. HMS Penn was delayed by a defect and after topping off with fuel at Moville, Northern Ireland overtook the force and joined at sea.

The aircraft carrier HMS Victorious (Capt. H.C. Bovell, CBE, RN, flying the flag of Rear Admiral A.L.St.G. Lyster, CB, CVO, DSO, RN) and the light cruiser HMS Sirius (Capt. P.W.B. Brooking, RN) meanwhile had already left Scapa Flow on 31 July 1941 to rendez-vous with the convoy. They were escorted by the destroyers HMS Intrepid (Cdr. C.A.deW. Kitcat, RN), HMS Icarus (Lt.Cdr. C.D. Maud, DSC and Bar, RN), HMS Fury (Lt.Cdr. C.H. Campbell, DSC and Bar, RN) and HMS Foresight (Lt.Cdr. R.A. Fell, RN). These ships were joined at sea on 1 August 1942 by the aircraft carrier HMS Argus (Capt. G.T. Philip, RN), loaded with spare fighter aircraft for the operation, and her two escorts the destroyers HMS Buxton (Lt.Cdr. I.J. Tyson, RD, RNR) and HMS Sardonyx (Lt.Cdr. A.F.C. Gray, RNR). HMS Argus and her two escorting destroyers had departed the Clyde on 31 July. HMS Buxton later split off and proceeded towards Canada and HMS Sardonyx proceeded to Londonderry.

The last ships to take part in the operation to depart the U.K. (Clyde around midnight during the night of 4/5 August) were the aircraft carrier HMS Furious (Capt. T.O. Bulteel, RN), loaded with Hurricane fighters for Malta, and her escorts, the light cruiser HMS Manchester (Capt. H. Drew, DSC, RN) and the Polish destroyer ORP Blyscawica (Lt.Cdr. L. Lichodziejewski, ORP). They were joined at sea, around dawn, by HMS Sardonyx coming from Londonderry. The destroyers parted company around midnight during the night of 5/6 August. They arrived at Londonderry on 7 August. HMS Furious and HMS Manchester then joined convoy WS 21S around midnight of the next night but HMS Manchester parted company shortly afterwards to proceed ahead of the convoy and fuel at Gibraltar.

On 1 August 1942 the aircraft carrier HMS Indomitable (Capt. T.H. Troubridge, RN), light cruiser HMS Phoebe (Capt. C.P. Frend, RN) and the destroyers HMS Laforey (Capt. R.M.J. Hutton, RN), HMS Lightning (Cdr. H.G. Walters, DSC, RN) and HMS Lookout (Lt.Cdr. A.G. Forman, DSC, RN) departed Freetown to proceed to a rendez-vous position off the Azores.

On 5 August 1942, the aircraft carrier HMS Eagle (Capt. L.D. Mackintosh, DSC, RN), light cruiser HMS Charybdis (Capt. G.A.W. Voelcker, RN) and the the destroyers HMS Wrestler (Lt. R.W.B. Lacon, DSC, RN), HMS Westcott (Cdr. I.H. Bockett-Pugh, DSO, RN) and HMS Vansittart (Lt.Cdr. T. Johnston, RN) departed Gibraltar also to the rendez-vous position off the Azores.

The convoy conducted maneuvering and AA exercises with the escorts between the Azores and Gibraltar during the period of 6 to 9 August. (Operation Berserk). Also dummy air attacks were carried out by aircraft from the carriers.

Passage of the Straits of Gibraltar and organization of escort forces.

The convoy then passed the Straits of Gibraltar during the night of 9/10 August 1942 in dense fog but despite this the convoy was detected by German and Italian spies and reported.

After passing the Straits of Gibraltar the convoy was organized as follows;
The actual convoy was protected a large force of warships until the whole force would split up before entering the Sicilian narrows after which ‘Force X’ under command of Rear-Admiral Sir H.M. Burrough, CB, DSO, RN was to accompany the convoy to the approaches to Malta where they would be met by the Malta Minesweeping Flotilla, which was then to sweep the convoy into the harbour. Force X was made up of the following ships:
Licht cruisers: HMS Nigeria (flagship), HMS Kenya,, HMS Manchester.
AA cruiser: HMS Cairo (A/Capt. C.C. Hardy, DSO, RN).
Destroyers: HMS Ashanti, HMS Fury, HMS Foresight, HMS Icarus, HMS Intrepid, HMS Pathfinder and HMS Penn.
Escort destroyers: HMS Derwent, HMS Bicester (Lt.Cdr. S.W.F. Bennetts, RN), HMS Bramham (Lt. E.F. Baines, RN), HMS Ledbury (Lt.Cdr. R.P. Hill, RN) and HMS Wilton (Lt. A.P. Northey, RN). Also the rescue tug HMS Jaunty was to be part of this force.

After the escort was to be split up cover was provided by ‘Force Z’ under Vice-Admiral E.N. Syfret, CB, RN. This force was made up of the following ships:
Battleships: HMS Nelson (flagship) and HMS Rodney.
Aircraft carriers: HMS Victorious, HMS Indomitable and HMS Eagle.
Light cruisers: HMS Phoebe, HMS Sirius and HMS Charybdis.
Destroyers: HMS Laforey, HMS Lightning, HMS Lookout, HMS Eskimo, HMS Somali, HMS Tartar, HMS Quentin, HMS Ithuriel (Lt.Cdr. D.H. Maitland-Makgill-Crichton, DSC, RN) HMS Antelope (Lt.Cdr. E.N. Sinclair), HMS Wishart and HMS Vansittart. Escort destroyer: HMS Zetland. Also attached were the aircraft carrier HMS Furious (for Operation Bellows, the launching of Hurricane fighters for Malta. HMS Furious only carried four Albacore aircraft for A/S searches after the Hurricanes had been launched) and the ‘spare’ destroyers HMS Keppel (Cdr. J.E. Broome, RN), HMS Malcolm, HMS Venomous, HMS Vidette (Lt.Cdr. E.N. Walmsley, DSC, RN), HMS Westcott, HMS Wolverine, HMS Wrestler and HMS Amazon. These ‘spare’ destroyers were to take the place of destroyers in the screen ‘Force Z’ if needed, escort HMS Furious during her return passage to Gibraltar after she had completed Operation Bellows and / or strengthen the escort of ‘Force R’.

Then there was also ‘Force R’, the fuelling force. This force was made up of the following ships:
Corvettes: HMS Jonquil (Lt.Cdr. R.E.H. Partington, RD, RNR), HMS Spiraea (Lt.Cdr. R.S. Miller, DSC, RNR), HMS Geranium (T/Lt. A. Foxall, RNR) and HMS Coltsfoot (T/Lt. the Hon. W.K. Rous, RNVR).
Rescue tug: HMS Salvonia.
RFA tankers: RFA Brown Ranger (3417 GRT, built 1941, Master D.B.C. Ralph) and RFA Dingledale (8145 GRT, built 1941, Master R.T. Duthie).

Before we give an account of the passage of the main convoy we will now first describe the operations taking place in the Eastern Mediterranean (Operations MG 3 and MG 4), the launching of the Hurricane fighters for Malta by HMS Furious (Operation Bellows) and the return convoy from Malta (Operation Ascendant) as well as on submarine operations / dispositions.

Diversion in the Eastern Mediterranean.

As part of the plan for Operation Pedestal the Mediterranean Fleet had to carry out a diversion in the Eastern part of the Mediterranean. Before we go to the operations in the Western Mediterranean we will first give an account of the events in the Eastern Mediterranean.

It was at this time not possible to sent any supplies from Egypt to Malta as all supplies and forces were much needed for the upcoming land battle at El Alamein it was agreed that ‘a dummy convoy’ would be sent towards Malta with the object of preventing the enemy to direct the full weight of their air and naval power towards the Western Mediterranean.

In the evening of 10 August 1942 a ‘convoy’ (MG 3) of three merchant ships departed Port Said escorted by three cruisers and ten destroyers. Next morning one more merchant ship departed Haifa escorted by two cruisers and five destroyers. The two forces joined that day (the 11th) and then turned back dispersing during the night. The Italian fleet however did not go to sea to attack ‘the bait’.

The forces taking part in this operation were:
From Port Said:
Merchant vessels City of Edinburgh (8036 GRT, built 1938), City of Lincoln (8039 GRT, built 1938) and City of Pretoria (8049 GRT, built 1937) escorted by the light cruisers HMS Arethusa (Capt. A.C. Chapman, RN), HMS Euryalus (Capt. E.W. Bush, DSO, DSC, RN), the AA cruiser HMS Coventry (Capt. R.J.R. Dendy, RN) and the destroyers HMS Jervis (Capt. A.L. Poland, DSO and Bar, DSC, RN), HMS Kelvin (Cdr. M.S. Townsend, OBE, DSC and Bar, RN), HMS Pakenham (Capt. E.B.K. Stevens, DSO, DSC, RN), HMS Paladin (Cdr. A.F. Pugsley, RN) and the escort destroyers HMS Dulverton(Lt.Cdr. W.N. Petch, OBE, RN), HMS Hurworth (Lt.Cdr. J.T.B. Birch, RN), HMS Eridge (Lt.Cdr. W.F.N. Gregory-Smith, DSC, RN), HMS Hursley (Lt. W.J.P. Church, DSC, RN), HMS Beaufort (Lt.Cdr. S.O’G Roche, RN) and HMS Belvoir (Lt. J.F.D. Bush, DSC and Bar, RN).

From Haifa:
Merchant vessel Ajax (7797 GRT, built 1931) escorted by the light cruisers HMS Cleopatra (Capt. G. Grantham, DSO, RN, flagship of Rear-Admiral P.L. Vian, KBE, DSO and 2 Bars, RN), HMS Dido (Capt. H.W.U. McCall, RN), the destroyers HMS Sikh (Capt. St.J. A. Micklethwait, DSO and Bar, RN), HMS Zulu (Cdr. R.T. White, DSO and Bar, RN), HMS Javelin (Cdr. H.C. Simms, DSO, RN) and the escort destroyers HMS Tetcott (Lt. H.R. Rycroft, RN) and HMS Croome (Lt.Cdr. R.C. Egan, RN).

After dark on 11 August 1942 the force turned back and the City of Pretoria returned to Port Said escorted by HMS Eridge and HMS Hursley. The City of Edinburgh, escorted by HMS Beaufort and HMS Belvoir proceeded to Haifa. The City of Lincoln escorted by HMS Dulverton and HMS Hurworth proceeded to Beirut and finally the Ajax, escorted by HMS Tetcott and HMS Croome returned to Haifa. HMS Dido had to return to Port Said with hull defects. She was escorted by HMS Pakenham, HMS Paladin and HMS Jervis.

HMS Cleopatra, HMS Arethusa, HMS Sikh, HMS Zulu, HMS Javelin and HMS Kelvin then proceeded to carry out another diversion (Operation MG 4). They bombarded Rhodos harbour and the Alliotti Flour Mills during the night of 12/13 August but did little damage. On the way back HMS Javelin attacked a submarine contact in position 34°45’N, 31°04’E between 0654 and 0804 hours. She reported that there was no doubt that the submarine was sunk but no Axis submarines were operating in this area so the attack must have been bogus. This force returned to Haifa at 1900/13.

Operation Bellows.

During operation Bellows, the aircraft carrier HMS Furious, started 37 Spitfire which were to proceed to Malta, when south of the Balearic Islands. The Admiralty had decided to carry out this operation at the same time as Operation Pedestal.

HMS Furious remained with the convoy until 1200/11. She then launched the Spitfires for Malta in 5 batches between 1230 and 1515 hours. During these flying off operations she acted independently with the destroyers HMS Lookout and HMS Lightning. After having launched the last batch of Spitfires she briefly re-joined to convoy until around 1700 hours when she split off and set course for Gibraltar escorted by the destroyers HMS Malcolm, HMS Wolverine and HMS Wrestler. These were joined shortly afterwards by HMS Keppel and HMS Venomous.

Around 0100/12, HMS Wolverine, rammed and sank the Italian submarine Dagabur which was trying to attack HMS Furious. Around 0200 hours, HMS Wolverine reported that she was stopped due to the damage she had sustained in the ramming. HMS Malcolm was detached to assist her.

At 1530/12, the destroyer HMS Vidette joined the screen. The force then entered Gibraltar Bay around 1930/12. The damaged HMS Wolverine arrived at Gibraltar at 1230/13 followed by HMS Malcolm around 1530/13.

Operation Ascendant

On 10 August 1942 the empty transports Troilus (7648 GRT, built 1921) and Orari (10107 GRT, built 1931) departed Malta after dark for Gibraltar. They were escorted by the destroyer HMS Matchless (Lt.Cdr. J. Mowlam, RN) and the escort destroyer HMS Badsworth (Lt. G.T.S. Gray, DSC, RN). They first proceeded to the south of Lampedusa, then hugged the Tunisian coast as far as Galita Island. Near Cape Bon they encountered the Italian destroyer Lanzerotto Malocello that was laying a minefield. They had a brief gunfight but this was soon ended as both sides were thinking the enemy was Vichy-French. The remained of the passage to Gibraltar was uneventful and the convoy arrived at Gibraltar shortly before noon on 14 August 1942.

Submarine operations / dispositions.
Eight submarines took part in the operation; these were HMS Utmost (Lt. A.W. Langridge, RN), HMS P 31 (Lt. J.B.de B. Kershaw, DSO, RN), HMS P 34 (Lt. P.R.H. Harrison, DSC, RN), HMS P 42 (Lt. A.C.G. Mars, RN), HMS P 44 (Lt. T.E. Barlow, RN), HMS P 46 (Lt. J.S. Stevens, DSC, RN), HMS P 211 (Cdr. B. Bryant, DSC, RN), HMS P 222 (Lt.Cdr. A.J. MacKenzie, RN). Two of these were to carry out normal dived patrol to the north of Sicily, one off Palermo, the other off Milazzo which is futher to the east. The other six submarines were given alternative patrol lines south of Pantelleria, one od which they were to take up at dawn on 13 August 1942, according to the movements of enemy surface ships that might threathen the convoy from the westward. When the convoy had passed the patrol line, which it should have done by that time, the submarines were to proceed on the surface parallel to the convoy as a screen and to dive away clear of the convoy at noon. It was expressly intended that they should be seen on the surface and reported by enemy aircraft in order to deter enemy warships from attacking the convoy.

Enemy warships did go to sea but as soon as it was clear that the enemy ships could not reach the convoy the sunmarines were ordered to dive and retire. These six sumarines had no contact with the enemy. One of the the two submarines off the north coast of Sicily, HMS P 42, managed to torpedo two Italian cruisers near Stromboli on the morning of 13 August 1942.

Now we return to the main convoy to Malta.

Passage eastwards after passing the Straits of Gibraltar.

10 and 11 August 1942.

After passing through the Straits of Gibraltar in the early hours of 10 August 1942, in dense fog, the convoy was first sighted by an Italian passenger aircraft, which sighted the convoy in the afternoon of the same day. German reconnaissance aircraft started shadowing the convoy from dawn on the 11th, and thereafter they or Italian aircraft kept the convoy under continuous observation, despite the effort of the fighters from the carriers to shoot them down or drive them off. At 1315 hours, HMS Eagle, was hit an sunk by torpedoes from the German submarine U-73 which had penetrated the destroyer screen. At that moment there were thirteen destroyers in the screen, the remainder was away from the main convoy, escorting HMS Furious during the flying off operations of the Hurricane fighters for Malta or oiling from and screening ‘Force R’ which was several miles away. Between 1430/10 and and 2030/11 no less then three cruisers and twenty-four destroyers fuelled from the two oilers of ‘Force R’.

At the time of the torpedoing of HMS Eagle the convoy was in four columns, zigzagging at 13 knots, with the heavy ships stationed close round it and a destroyer screen ahead. HMS Eagle was on the starboard quarter of the convoy. She was hit on her starboard side by four torpedoes which had dived through the destroyer screen and the convoy columns undetected and then torpedoed and sank the Eagle in position 38°05’N, 03°02’E (Another source gives 03°12’E but this might be a typo). The carrier sank quickly in about 8 minutes, 926 of her crew, including the Commanding Officer, were rescued by the destroyers HMS Laforey and HMS Lookout and the rescue tug HMS Jaunty. At the time of her sinking, HMS Eagle had four aircraft on patrol. These landed on the other carriers. All other aircraft were lost with the ship. The survivors picked up were later transferred to the destroyers HMS Keppel, HMS Malcolm and HMS Venomous that were to escort HMS Furious back to Gibraltar. The tug HMS Jaunty that had been involved in picking up survivors was never able to rejoin the convoy due to her slow speed.

Late in the afternoon air attacks were expected so Vice-Admiral Syfret ordered the destroyer to form an all-round screen. Indeed the air attacks started around sunset, 2045 hours. The last destroyers had just returned from oiling from ‘Force R’. The enemy aircraft that were attacking were 36 German bombers and torpedo aircraft, Ju 88’s and He 111’s, most of which attacked the convoy but a few attacked ‘Force R’ to the southward. The Junkers arrived first, diving down from 8000 feet to 2000 / 3000 feet to drop their bombs. They claimed to have hit an aircraft carrier and one of the merchant ships. Then the Heinkels attacked, they claimed to have torpedoed a cruiser but during the attacks no ship was hit. The British fighter cover was unable to attack / find the enemy in the failing light. Four enemy aircraft were claimed shot down by the ships AA fire but it appears only two JU 88’s were in fact shot down.

12 August 1942

At 0915/12 another wave of German aircraft attacked the convoy. Some twenty or more JU 88’s approached the convoy out of the sun ahead. They were intercepted by fighters about 25 miles from the convoy. About a dozen got through to the convoy, making high-level or shallow dive-bombing attacks individually but without any result. Eight German aircraft were claimed to be shot down by the fighters and two more by AA guns from the ships. The fighters meanwhile were also busy dealng with shadowers, three of which are claimed to have been shot down before the morning attack. Around this time destroyers were also busy with numerous submarine contact which were attacked by depth charges.

Around noon the enemy launched heavy air attacks from the Sardinian airfields. Seventy aircraft approached which were heavily escorted by fighters. They attacked in stages and employed new methods.

First ten Italian torpedo-bombers were each to drop some sort of circling torpedo or mine a few hundred yards ahead of the British force, while eight fighter bombers made dive-bombing and machine-gun attacks. The object at this stage was clearly to dislocate the formation of the force and to draw anti-aircraft fire, making the ships more vulnerable to a torpedo attack which soon followed with over forty aircraft. They attacked in two groups, one on either bow of the convoy. The next stage was a shallow dive-bombing attack by German aircraft, after which two Italian Reggiane 2001 fighters, each with a single heavy armour-piercing bomb were to dive bomb on one of the aircraft carriers, whilst yet another new form of attack was to be employed against the other carrier, but defects in the weapon prevented this attack from taking place.

The enemy attack went according to plan besides that the torpedo attack was only made half an our after the ‘mines’ were dropped instead of five minutes. British fighters met the minelaying aircraft, they shot down one of them as they approached. The remaining nine aircraft dropped their ‘mines’ at 1215 hours in the path of the force, which turned to avoid the danger. The mines were heard to explode several minutes later. Only three of the fighter-bombers of this stage of the attack appear to have reached as far the screen, but HMS Lightning had a narrow escape from their bombs.

The torpedo-aircraft appeared at 1245 hours. Their number were brought down a bit due to British fighters. The remaining aircraft, estimated at 25 to 30 machines, attacked from the port bow, port beam and starboard quarter. They dropped their torpedoes well outside the screen some 8000 yards from the merchant ships which they had been ordered to attack. The force turned 45° to port and then back to starboard to avoid the attack.

In the next stage, around 1318 hours, the German bombing attack, the enemy scored their one success. These aircraft were also intercepted on their way in but about a dozen of about twenty aircraft came through. They crossed the convoy from starboard to port and then dived to 3000 feet. They managed to damage the transport Deucalion which was leading the port wing column. More bombs fell close to several other ships.

Finally, at 1345 hours, the two Reggiane fighters approached HMS Victorious as if to land on. They looked like Hurricanes and HMS Victorious was at that time engaged in landing her own fighters. They managed to drop their bombs and one hit the flight deck amidships. Fortunately the bomb broke up without exploding. By the time HMS Victorious could open fire both fighters were out of range.

The Deucalion could no longer keep up with the convoy and was ordered to follow the inshore route along the Tunisian coast escorted by HMS Bramham. Two bombers found these ships late in the afternoon, but their bombs missed. At 1940 hours, however, near the Cani Rocks, two torpedo aircraft attacked and a torpedo hit the Deucalion. She caught fire and eventually blew up.

The convoy passed some 20 miles north of Galita Island and spent the afternoon avoiding enemy submarines which were known to be concentrated in these waters. There were innumerable reports of sightings and Asdic contacts and at least two submarines proved dangerous. At 1616 hours, HMS Pathfinder and HMS Zetland attacked one on the port bow of the convoy and hunted her until the convoy was out of reach. HMS Ithuriel, stationed on the quarter, then attacked, forced the enemy to surface and finally rammed her. She proved to be the Italian submarine Cobalto. Meanwhile HMS Tartar, on the starboard quarter, saw six torpedoes fired at close range at 1640 hours, and the next destroyer in the screen, HMS Lookout sighted a periscope. Together they attacked the submarine, continuing until it was no longer dangerous. There was no evidence this submarine was sunk.

At 1750 hours, HMS Ithuriel, which was on her way back to the convoy after sinking the Italian submarine Cobalto was attacked by a few dive-bombers, when still a dozen miles astern of the convoy. At this time the convoy came under attack by aircraft stationed on Sicily. This force numbered nearly 100 aircraft. Ju.87 dive-bombers as well as Ju.88’s and SM-79’s all with a strong escort of fighters. The enemy started attacking at 1835 hours, the bombers attacking from both ahead and astern which last was the direction of the sun. The torpedo aircraft came from ahead to attack on the starboard bow and beam of the convoy.

The Italian SM-79’s torpedo bombers dropped their torpedoes from ranges of about 3000 yards outside the destroyer screen, and once again the convoy turned away to avoid them. However the destroyer HMS Foresight was hit by a torpedo and disabled. The bombers chose HMS Indomitable as their main target. She was astern of HMS Rodney at the time on the port quarter of the convoy. Four Ju.88’s and eight Ju.87’s came suddenly out of the sun and dived steeply towards HMS Indomitable from astern. Some of the Ju.87 came down to 1000 feet and the carrier received three hits and her flight deck was put out of action. Her airborne fighters eventually had to land on HMS Victorious. HMS Rodney meanwhile had a narrow escape when a bomber attacked from ahead. One enemy aircraft was claimed to have been shot down by AA fire from the ships while the fighters claimed nine more although there were about twice as much enemy fighters in the air then British.

HMS Tartar took the damaged HMS Foresight in tow and proceeded westward for Gibraltar. Next day, as they were shadowed by enemy aircraft, and enemy submarines were known to be in the area, it was decided to scuttle the cripple before both ships might be lost. HMS Tartar then torpedoed HMS Foresight a few miles from Galita Island.

Passage through the narrows, 12-13 August 1942, and the loss off HMS Manchester.

These last air attacks took place about 20 nautical miles west of the Skerki Channel and at 1900 hours, when the attacks were clearly over, Vice-Admiral Syfret turned away with ‘Force Z’. It was now up to Rear-Admiral Burrough with ‘Force X’ to take the convoy to Malta.

At 2000 hours, when the convoy was changing it’s formation from four to two columns, the convoy was attacked by Italian submarines. The submarine Dessie attacked a freighter with four torpedoes and claimed three hits. The sound of the torpedo hits was however not caused by her attack but by an attack by the Axum which hit three ships, HMS Nigeria, HMS Cairo and the tanker Ohio.

HMS Nigeria had to turn back to make for Gibraltar escorted by the escort destroyers HMS Derwent, HMS Wilton and HMS Bicester. Rear-Admiral Burrough transferred his flag to the destroyer HMS Ashanti. The stern of HMS Cairo had been blown off and she had to be sunk as she was beyond salvage with both engines also out of action. She was scuttled by HMS Pathfinder. The Ohio meanwhile managed to struggle on.

At this time the convoy was still trying to form up the the submarine attacks messed things up and right at thus time the convoy was once more attacked from the air in the growing dusk at 2030 hours. About 20 German aircraft, Ju-88’s made dive bombing and torpedo attacks, hitting the Empire Hope with a bomb and the Clan Ferguson and Brisbane Star with torpedoes. The first of these ships had to be sunk (by HMS Bramham, the second blew up but the last eventually reached Malta. Soon after this attack, at 2111 hours, HMS Kenya was torpedoed by the Italian submarine Alagi. She was able to evade three of the four torpedoes but was hit in the bow by the fouth. She was however able to remain with the convoy.

The situation was then as follows. HMS Kenya and HMS Manchester with two merchant ships, and with the minesweeping destroyers HMS Intrepid, HMS Icarus and HMS Fury sweeping ahead, had passed the Skerki Channel and were steering to pass Zembra Island on the way to Cape Bon. HMS Ashanti, with Rear-Admiral Burrough on board was fast overhauling these ships. The other two destroyers HMS Pathfinder, HMS Penn and the escort destroyer HMS Ledbury, were rounding up the remaining nine merchant ships. The escort destroyer HMS Bramham was also catching up after having escorted the single Deucalion until she sank.

On learing about the fate of HMS Nigeria and HMS Cairo, Vice-Admiral Syfret detached HMS Charybdis, HMS Eskimo and HMS Somali to reinforce Rear-Admiral Burrough. It would take these ships several hourse to catch up with the convoy.

The main body of the convoy passed Cape Bon around midnight. Fourty minutes later enemy Motor Torpedo Boats appeared and started to attack. Their first victim was HMS Manchester which was torpedoed at 0120/13 by the Italian MS 16 or MS 22. She had to be scuttled by her own crew. Many of her ships company landed in Tunisia and were interned by the Vichy-French but about 300 were picked up by destroyers (first by HMS Pathfinder, and later by HMS Eskimo and HMS Somali. These last two destoyers then set off towards Gibraltar.)

Four and possibly five of the merchant ships were also hit by the Motor Torpedo Boats. These were the Wairangi, Rochester Castle, Almeria Lykes, Santa Elisa and probably the Glenorchy. They were attacked between 0315 and 0430 hours about 15 nautical miles south-east of Kelibia whilst taking a short cut to overhaul the main body of the convoy. Four were lost, only the Rochester Castle survived and she managed to catch up with the main body of the convoy at 0530 hours. The Glenorchy was sunk by the Italian MS 31, the other four, of which the Rochester Castle survived as mentioned earlier, were hit by the German S 30 and S 36 as well as the Italian MAS 554 and MAS 557.

Shortly before 0530 hours HMS Charybdis, HMS Eskimo and HMS Somali had joined the main body of the convoy making the force now two cruisers and seven destroyers with the transports Rochester Castle, Waimarama and Melbourne Star. The damaged tanker Ohio was slowly catching up. With her was the escort destroyer HMS Ledbury. Astern of the main body was the Port Chalmers escorted by the destroyer HMS Penn and the escort destroyer HMS Bramham. The destroyers recued the crew of the Santa Elisa when the passed by the abandoned ship which was afterwards finished off by a German bomber. The Dorset was proceeding without escort and lastly the damaged Brisbane Star was still keeping close to the Tunisian coast independently, intending to steer towards Malta after nightfall.

At 0730 hours, Rear-Admiral Burrough, sent back HMS Tartar and HMS Somali to Kelibia to assist HMS Manchester and then go to Gibraltar. When they arrived they found out that the Manchester had been scuttled several hours earlier so they rescued those of her crew that had not reached the shore yet and then made off to Gibraltar as ordered. Besides crew of the Manchester they also picked up survivors from the Almeria Lykes and Wairangi.

The next encounter with the enemy was an air attack on the main body of the convoy at 0800 hours by German bombers. About 12 Ju.88’s made a shallow diving attack coming down from 6000 feet to 2000 feet to drop their bombs. Two dived on the Waimarama hitting her several times and she blew up immediately, one of the bombers was even destroyed in the explosion. HMS Ledbury saved some of her crew out of the blazing sea. At 0925 hours, when the Ohio, Port Chalmers and Dorset where with the main body again, a few Ju.87’s escorted by Italian fighters attacked. They dived down to 1500 to 1000 feet. HMS Kenya leading the port column, and the Ohio last ship but one in the starboard column, had narrow escapes. One of the enemy aircraft crashed on board the Ohio just after having released it’s bomb after being damaged by gunfire from the Ohio and HMS Ashanti. Another aircraft was claimed to have been shot down by fighters from Malta that had been patrolling overhead since daybreak.

Arrivals at Malta 13-15 August 1942.

At 1050 hours, about 20 bombers, mostly Ju.88’s with a few Ju.87’s, came in to attack. Target was the Ohio and she received four or five near misses and her engines were disabled. At the same time the Rochester Castle in the port column was near-missed and set on fire but she continued with the convoy. The Dorset which was astern of her was hit and stopped. The convoy went on leaving the Dorset behind with the Ohio and two destroyers.

At 1125 hours the last air attack on the main body took place. Five Italian SM.79’s attacked with torpedoes and almost hit the Port Chalmers as the torpedo got stuck in the paravane. Further attacks on the main body were held of by fighters from Malta. At 1430 hours, four minesweepers from Malta joined the main body of the convoy, these were HMS Speedy (Lt.Cdr. A.E. Doran, RN, with the group’s commander A/Cdr. H.J.A.S. Jerome, RN on board), HMS Hebe, HMS Rye and HMS Heyte. Also with them were seven Motor Launches; ML 121, ML 126, ML 134, ML 135, ML 168, ML 459 and ML 462. HMS Rye and two of the ML’s were sent towards the damaged Ohio which was ‘vital for Malta’, according to A/Cdr. Jerome.

At 1600 hours, Rear-Admiral Burrough, set course to the west with his two cruisers and with five destroyers. The Port Chalmers, Melbourne Star and Rochester Castle arrived in Grand Harbour around 1800 hours with the force of A/Cdr. Jerome. The Rochester Castle was by that time very low in the water, she had just made it into port on time.

Out were still the Ohio, Dorset and the Brisbane Star. The valuable Ohio had been helpless with HMS Penn and HMS Bramham. When HMS Rye arrived at 1730 hours, HMS Penn took the Ohio in tow. Meanwhile HMS Bramham was sent to the Dorset but soon afterwards German bombers came again and the ships were attacked repeatedly until dark. Both merchantman were hit around 1900 hours and the Dorset sank.

At daylight on the 14th HMS Ledbury arrived to help bringing the Ohio to Malta. HMS Speedy also soon arrived on the scene with two ML’s. The rest of his force he had sent to search for the Brisbane Star. At 1045 hours, enemy aircraft made their last attempt, causing the parting of the tow. Fighter from Malta shot down two of the attackers. The tow was passed again and the slow procession went on and in the morning of the 15th the vital tanker finally reached Malta.

The Brisbane Star had by then also arrived. She left the Tunisian coast at dusk on the 13th. Aircraft had attacked her unsuccessfully and one of the attackers was shot down by a Beaufighter escort that had been sent from Malta. She arrived at Malta in the afternoon of the 14th.

Italian surface ships to operate against the convoy ?

The convoy had experienced the violence of the enemy in every shape except that of an attack by large surface ships. Yet Italian cruisers and destroyers had been at sea to intercept and attack it. Two light cruiser had left Cagliari in the evening of 11 August 1942 and the heavy cruisers Gorizia and Bolzano from Messina, and a light cruiser from Naples had sailed on the morning of the 12th. That evening reconnaissance aircraft reported one heavy and two light cruisers with eight destroyers about 80 nautical miles to the north of the western tip of Sicily and steering south. It would have been possible for this force to meet the convoy at dawn on the 13th so the shadowing aircraft was therefore ordered in plain language to illuminate and attack. This apparently influenced the Italians as they had limited air cover and they turned back at 0130/13 when near Cape San Vito. At 0140 hours the aircraft reported that it had dropped its bombs but no hits had been obtained. Similar orders were signalled, in plain language, to relief shadowers and to report the position of the enemy force to the benefit of imaginary Liberator bombers in case the Italians would change their minds and turn back. They however held on to the eastward.

The submarine HMS P 42 sighted them around 0800/13 off Stromboli and attacked with four torpedoes claiming two hits. She had in fact hit the heavy cruiser Bolzano which was able to proceed northwards and the light cruiser Muzio Attendolo which managed to reach Messina with her bows blown off. The other cruisers went to Naples. Following the attack P 42 was heavily depth charged by the destroyers but managed to escape.

In fact the following Italian ships had been at sea; heavy cruisers Gorizia, Trieste, Bolzano, light cruisers Eugenio di Savoia Raimondo Montecuccoli, Muzio Attendolo. They were escorted by eleven destroyers; Ascari, Aviere, Camicia Nera, Corsaro, Fuceliere, Geniere, Legionaro, Vincenzo Gioberti, Alfredo Oriani, Grecale and Maestrale.

The return to Gibraltar.

The British ships returning to Gibraltar had better fortune. Having left the convoy off Malta in the afternoon of the 13th, they rounded Cape Bon around 0130/14 and from that point until past Zembra Island they successful ran the gauntled of E-boats laying in wait.

at 0450/14, near the Fratelli Rocks, a submarine fired torpedoes at HMS Ashanti from the surface. She was nearly rammed by HMS Kenya, which was next astern of the ‘flagship’ (Rear-Admiral Burrough was still in HMS Ashanti). The inevitable shadowers arrived soon after daylight to herald their air attacks that began at 0730 hours. They lasted until around 1315 hours. German bombers came in first with three attemps by a few Ju.88’s. This was followed by a more severe attack with about 30 bombers, Ju-88’s and Ju-87’s between 1030 and 1050 hours. An hour later 15 Savoia high-level bombers attacked followed until 1315 hours by torpedo-carrying Savoia’s. Around 20 aircraft attacking single or in pairs. Also aircraft are though to be laying mines ahead. Several ships were near missed, but no further damage was sustained. After these attacks the British were left alone and in the evening they joined ‘Force Z’.

Vice-Admiral Syfret had gone as far west as 01’E where he ordered the damaged carrier HMS Indomitable to proceed to Malta with HMS Rodney and a destroyer screen (which). He then turned back to the east to make rendez-vous with Rear-Admiral Burrough. They arrived at Gibraltar on the 15th.

A few hours before they arrived the damaged HMS Nigeria and her escort had also entered port, as had HMS Tartar, HMS Eskimo and HMS Somali. On her way back HMS Nigeria had been attacked by torpedo-bombers and a submarine but she had not been hit.

Conclusion.

Out of the fourteen ships that had sailed only five arrived ‘safe’ at Malta. This was not a very high score also given the very heavy escort that had been provided also taken in mind that an aircraft carrier, a light cruiser, an AA cruiser an a destroyer had been lost and two heavy cruiser had been damaged. But the convoy had to meet very heavy air attacks by over 150 bombers and 80 torpedo aircraft, all in the space of two days. Also these aircraft were protected by fighter in much greater strength that the carriers and Malta could provide. And there were also the enemy submarines and E-boats.

The spirit in which to operation was carried out appears in Vice-Admiral Syfret’s report: ‘ Tribute has been paid to the personnel of His Majesty’s Ships, both the officers and men will desire to give first place to the conduct, courage, and determination of the masters, officers, and men of the merchant ships. The steadfast manner in which these ships pressed on their way to Malta through all attacks, answering every maneuvering order like a well trained fleet unit, was a most inspiring sight. Many of these fine men and their ships were lost. But the memory of their conduct will remain an inspiration to all who were privileged to sail with them. ‘ (6)

18 Aug 1942
HMS P 44 (Lt. T.E. Barlow, RN) torpedoed and sank the Italian transport ship Rosolino Pilo (8326 GRT, built 1942) 50 nautical miles bearing 190 of Pantellaria. The Italian ship was already damaged in a previous attack by British aircraft. Rosolino Pilo had been escorted by the Italian destroyers Maestrale and Gioberti and was en-route from Trapani to Tripoli. She had a civilian crew of fifty, a naval crew of thirty-two Italians and thirty-nine as well as 110 German passengers. There were no casualties as they had evacuated long before P 44 with the exception of Captain Oreste Tomassi and four sailors who had remained on board and left just shortly before the submarine finished her off.

(All times are zone -2)
17 August 1942
In the evening P 44 was ordered to investigate the scene of a successful RAF attack on a merchant vessel in position 295°, Lampion Island, 16 nautical miles.

2050 hours - Set course to comply with the orders. Several new positions were signalled later on.

2234 hours - Sighted a flare. Closed the scene as it had been signalled that the RA would drop flares over the damaged ship.

2239 hours - A second flare was fired. Sighted the target in the light of the flare. More flares were dropped at 2246, 2250, 2303 and 2307 hours.

2307 hours - The merchant vessel could now clearly be seen in the light of the last flare. Range was 6 nautical miles. Closed. No escort was seen and the merchant, of 7000 to 8000 tons, was stopped and down by the stern. She was in position 302°, Lampion Island, 29 nautical miles.

18 August 1942
0009 hours - Fired one torpedo from 1500 yards. The result was gratifying, if unexpected. The explosion of the torpedo was followed instantaneously by another of gigantic proportions as the whole merchant ship exploded. As the commanding officer left the bridge a violent hot blast reached P 44 and debris was already clattering on the casing and before it was possible to dive, a report of the motor room was received of water coming in fast. P 44 therefore remained on the surface as no escort seemed to be present and when the hailstorm of debris had descended, it was found that the bridge was partially wrecked by a 12 foot length of one-inch frame embedded in the starboard side. Jumping wire had parted and loop and main aerials broken. In addition, upper steering was wrecked. There was no sign of the merchant ship.

The pressure hull aft was examined and a 6" gash was found which was then caulked with wood and cotton waste.

A signal was then sent to Malta reporting the situation.

1309 hours - Received orders to return to Malta. Set course accordingly. (5)

19 Aug 1942
HMS P 44 (Lt. T.E. Barlow, RN) ended her 4th war patrol (also 4th in the Mediterranean) at Malta. (5)

6 Sep 1942
HMS P 44 (Lt. T.E. Barlow, RN) departed Malta for her 5th war patrol (also 5th in the Mediterranean). She was ordered to patrol off Misurata.

For the daily and attack positions of HMS P 44 during this patrol see the map below.

(5)

13 Sep 1942
HMS P 44 (Lt. T.E. Barlow, RN) attacked the Italian merchant vessel Ascianghi (610 GRT, built 1922) with two and later one torpedo. All torpedoes missed despite the claim for one hit. Ascianghi was unescorted and on a trip from Tripoli to Benghazi which she reached on the 15th.

(All times are zone -2)
0925 hours - Sighted smoke bearing 270°. Went to the southward at speed for 60 minutes to intercept.

1030 hours - Mast and funnel were now distinguishable. Range could however not be estimated due to the mirage.

1112 hours - In position 32°24'N, 15°26'E fired two torpedoes from 700 yards. One hit as obtained. The ship stopped. P 44 retired into deeper water. The ship was abandoned and had started to list.

1132 hours - Decided to return to finish her off. Shortly afterwards she got underway again and made off towards the shore.

1204 hours - P 44 had followed her and fired another torpedo from 2500 yards which missed. Decided to return after dark to finish her off with gunfire as it seemed likely she was going to beach herself.

The enemy was however not seen again. (5)

17 Sep 1942
HMS P 44 (Lt. T.E. Barlow, RN) sank the Italian salvage vessel Rostro (333 GRT, built 1917) and the Italian auxiliary A/S schooner V 39/Giovanna (158 GRT) west of Zliten, Libya.

(All times are zone -2)
0925 hours - Sighted masts of a sailing vessel bearing 252°.

0943 hours - Sighted masts of a steamer astern of the sailing vessel. The sailing vessel was by now seen to be a two-masted vessel proceeding under her own power. Started attack.

1031 hours - In position 32°40'N, 14°40'E fired two torpedoes from 1000 yards at the merchant vessel. One explosion was heard and HE of the target ceased. It started again 10 minutes later.

1050 hours - Observed the merchant vessel to be down by the stern heading for the shore. Shortly afterwards both vessels were seen to anchor near the shore. Decided to return after dusk to destroy them with gunfire.

1955 hours - Surfaced 2 nautical miles from the shore and ran in towards the enemy while firing with the gun. They were very difficult to make out against the land and this made the gun action very difficult. After a while decided to fire one torpedo against each ship.

2036 and 2037 hours - Fired a torpedo at each ship from 900 and 800 yards. Both ships were hit and sank at once in position 32°35'N, 14°24'E. (5)

19 Sep 1942
HMS P 44 (Lt. T.E. Barlow, RN) ended her 5th war patrol (also 5th in the Mediterranean) at Malta. (5)

28 Sep 1942
HMS P 44 (Lt. T.E. Barlow, RN) departed Malta for her 6th war patrol (also 6th in the Mediterranean). She was ordered to patrol off the south Calabrian coast.

For the daily and attack positions of HMS P 44 during this patrol see the map below.

(5)

30 Sep 1942
HMS P 44 (Lt. T.E. Barlow, RN) attacked an escorted merchant vessel near Cape Spartivento, Calabria, Italy. A total of four torpedoes were fired but no hits were obtained. This was the German Ruhr (5954 GRT, built 1925) which was narrowly missed. She was escorted by the destroyers Antonio da Noli and Freccia and they were on a trip from Messina to Patras.

(All times are zone -2)
0850 hours - Sighted a 4000 ton merchant vessel escorted by two destroyers (one Navigatori-class ahead and one Maestrale-class on the starboard side). They were on an easterly course, hugging the coast. Range was 5 nautical miles. Started attack.

0920 hours - In position 37°52'N, 15°58'E fired three torpedoes from 3000 yards. No hits were obtained.

0945 hours - Fired one torpedo. This one also missed. (5)

1 Oct 1942
HMS P 44 (Lt. T.E. Barlow, RN) torpedoed and (further) damaged the Italian merchant Ravenna (1148 GRT, built 1888) near Locri, Calabria, Italy. The Ravenna was beahed after air attack and a fire on 29 September 1942.

(All times are zone -2)
0700 hours - Sighted a merchant vessel aground in the position stated in yesterdays signal from Capt. S.10. A MAS boat was patrolling to seaward and a schooner was alongside. Also two aircraft were patrolling overhead. Tried to obtain a suitable firing position for nearly 2 hours.

0855 hours - In position 38°15'N, 16°17'E fired one torpedo from 2000 yards. Heard it hit.

0858 hours - Fired another torpedo at a second vessel that had meanwhile been sighted half a mile to the south. This vessel was believed to be a tug or salvage vessel. This torpedo missed.

0940 hours - The merchant vessel was seen to be deeper in the water with the tug standing by. The schooner that had been sunk could no longer be seen. (5)

2 Oct 1942
HMS P 44 (Lt. T.E. Barlow, RN) attacked the Italian water tanker Oristano (280 GRT, built 1914) with gunfire off Cape Colonne. The action was broken off when shore batteries (197th Battery, 76cm guns) opened up an accurate gunfire and the auxiliary submarine chaser Maria arrived on the scene.

(All times are zone -2)
1800 hours - When 2 nautical miles east of Cape Colonne sighted a small steamer of less then 500 tons rounding the cape from the south. Chased her inshore to engage with the gun.

1823 hours - To pursue her any further would bring P 44 too close to Crotone so surfaced at 2500 yards range and opened fire. After only 3 minutes, shore batteries opened an accurate fire. P 44 had fired 11 rounds and was just fining the range when the action had broken off. P 44 then retired to seaward. (5)

6 Oct 1942
HMS P 44 (Lt. T.E. Barlow, RN) ended her 6th war patrol (also 6th in the Mediterranean) at Malta. (5)

13 Oct 1942
HMS P 44 (Lt. T.E. Barlow, RN) departed Malta for her 7th war patrol (also 7th in the Mediterranean). She was ordered to patrol to the east of Misurata.

For the daily and attack positions of HMS P 44 during this patrol see the map below.

(5)

17 Oct 1942
In the evening HMS P 44 (Lt. T.E. Barlow, RN) received orders to proceed to a position about 110 nautical miles to the north of Tripoli, Libya (33°41'N, 13°03'E) to intercept an important southbound enemy convoy. (5)

20 Oct 1942
HMS P 44 (Lt. T.E. Barlow, RN) attacked an escorted ship about 80 nautical miles north-north-west of Tripoli, Libya. Three torpedoes were fired but no hits were obtained. This was the Italian tanker Saturno (5029 GRT, built 1914) escorted by the destroyers Antonio Da Noli and Antonio Pigafetta. Da Noli sighted the torpedo tracks and the submerging submarine and dropped a few depth charges. She cruised the area for four hours and believed the submarine to have been damaged.

(All times are zone -1)
0128 hours - Sighted a ship at a range of 2.5 nautical miles. Two destroyers were also seen to be in the area. It was decided to attack at once on the surface.

0131 hours - In position 34°03'N, 12°35'E fired three torpedoes.

0132 hours - Dived. Two explosions were heard 3m 15s and 3m 25s after firing the first torpedo. These are thought to be hits but the results were not observed.

Following the attack both destroyers were heard searching but never gained contact. A few depth charges were dropped but these were not close at all. (5)

22 Oct 1942
HMS P 44 (Lt. T.E. Barlow, RN) ended her 7th war patrol (also 7th in the Mediterranean) at Malta. (5)

23 Oct 1942
HMS P 44 (Lt. T.E. Barlow, RN) was docked in No.3 dock at Malta. (7)

30 Oct 1942
HMS P 44 (Lt. T.E. Barlow, RN) was undocked. (7)

2 Nov 1942
HMS P 44 (Lt. T.E. Barlow, RN) departed Malta for her 8th war patrol (also 8th in the Mediterranean). She was ordered to patrol to the north of Sicily to form part of a line of submarines to provide cover during the Allied landings in North Africa (Operation Torch).

She departed Malta together with HMS P 35 (Lt. S.L.C. Maydon, RN) and HMS P 46 (Lt. J.S. Stevens, DSC, RN). They were escorted out by HMS Speedy (Lt. J.G. Brookes, DSC, RN).

No log is available for this patrol so no map can be displayed. (5)

8 Nov 1942
HMS P 44 (Lt. T.E. Barlow, RN) attacks the damaged Italian light cruiser Attilio Regolo with two torpedoes of Capo San Vito, Sicily, Italy in position 38°15'N, 12°47'E. The torpedoes missed their target.

The Attilio Regolo had lost her bow due to an attack earlier that day by HMS P 46 (Lt. J.S. Stevens, DSC, RN). Attilio Regolo had laid a minefield to the east of Cape Bon together with the Italian destroyers Antonio Pigafetta, Antonio da Noli, Nicolo Zeno, Ascari, Mitragliere and Corazziere.

After being torpedoed by P 46 she was taken in tow by the tugs Monfalcone, Maurizio, Liguria and Trieste. A fifth tug, Poliferno joined from Palermo at 1730 hours. They were now escorted by the destroyers Pigafetta, Da Noli and Zeno [Ascari, Mitragliere and Corazziere had left them to return to Messina] reinforced by the Italian torpedo boats Cigno and Giuseppe Cesare Abba. [Torpedo boat Lince arriving from Palermo was in sight but had not yet joined the formation while Abba may have stayed behind on an A/S search] and MAS 544 and MAS 549. Regolo reported the torpedo tracks and the destroyers Zeno and Da Noli were detached to hunt the submarine but made no contact.

(All times are zone -1)
1025 hours - Heard a loud explosion and saw a column of water and an enormous cloud of smoke bearing 110°. Closed to investigate.

1200 hours - Nothing could be seen yet due to a lot of smoke.

1356 hours - Sighted a cruiser bearing 126° at a range of 6 nautical miles. It was thought she was proceeding south. Went deep to close at speed.

1424 hours - Returned to periscope depth. It was seen that the cruiser was not proceeding to the south but on a course of 070°. She was being towed stern first as her bow was badly damaged. P 44 was now in a bad position to attack.

1545 hours - Range had now been closed to 3.5 nautical miles. The cruiser was nearly bows on with a large number of destroyers and torpedo-boats circling round her. Decided to fire two torpedoes as it seemed unlikely to close any further without being detected.

1549 hours - In position 38°15'N, 12°47'E fired two torpedoes.

1556 hours - Heard a torpedo explosion giving a running range of 8200 yards.

1558 hours - Heard another torpedo explosion. It is thought that the first torpedo explosion might have been a hit.

1645 hours - Returned to periscope depth. The cruiser was not seen. (5)

11 Nov 1942
HMS P 44 (Lt. T.E. Barlow, RN) attacked a merchant vessel with two torpedoes off Cape San Vito in position 38°12'N, 12°46'E. Both torpedoes missed. This was the Italian freighter Cerere (1198 GRT, built 1920) which observed the two torpedo tracks.

(All times are zone -1)
1258 hours - Sighted smoke bearing 105°. Soon afterwards sighted that this was coming from a 2000 tons merchant vessel steering a course of 265°. Range was 5 nautical miles. Started attack.

1349 hours - In position 38°12'N, 12°46'E fired two torpedoes from 900 yards. Both missed. (5)

13 Nov 1942
HMS P 44 (Lt. T.E. Barlow, RN) ended her 8th war patrol (also 8th in the Mediterranean) at Malta. (5)

18 Nov 1942
HMS P 44 (Lt. T.E. Barlow, RN) departed Malta for her 9th war patrol (also 9th in the Mediterranean). She was ordered to patrol between Misurata and Burat.

No log is available for this patrol so no map can be displayed. (5)

21 Nov 1942
HMS P 44 (Lt. T.E. Barlow, RN) attacked the Italian submarine Santorre Santarosa with four torpedoes off Buerat. All torpedoes missed.

Later the same day P 44 engaged shipping inside the harbour with the deck gun damaging the Italian sailing vessel Littoria (129 GRT, built 1920).

(All times are zone -1)
0727 hours - In position 31°27'N, 15°45'E sighted up sun, the conning tower of a submarine baring 090°. Enemy course was 265°. Range was 6000 yards. Enemy speed appeared to be very high. Started attack.

0737 hours - Fired four torpedoes from 2000 yards. All missed and most likely the torpedoes ran aground on a sand bank.

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

0940 hours - Grounded off the harbour entrance. Came up to 10 feet and retired to seaward. No fire came from the shore though despite the fact that P 44 was visible for 5 minutes.

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

1340 hours - Sighted the enemy submarine leaving the harbour. She could not be intercepted as P 44 was too far to the west. Most likely the approach from the west of this morning of this submarine was due to a bad landfall.

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

1745 hours - Surfaced and closed the harbour entrance. Three or four small ships were sighted in the harbour in the forenoon. Decided for gun action in the hope of sinking some of these and if possible the pier before the reply would come too hot.

1803 hours - Opened fire on a 150 ton schooner, the largest vessel visible from a range of 1000 yards. Scored ten to twelve hits out of sixteen rounds fired. Then shifted target to the pier and a small steamer alongside it. After firing twelve rounds for six hits some small arms fire opened up from the beach, followed by light and erratic field gun fire. At the same time the gun malfunctioned.

1807 hours - Broke off the action and retired to the seaward. The schooner was seen to be smoke and to be lower in the water. She may have settled on the bottom. (5)

23 Nov 1942
HMS P 44 (Lt. T.E. Barlow, RN) attacked a convoy of small vessels to the north of Misurata. The attack had to be broken off shortly after it started when P 44's gun again jammed and enemy opposition was fierce. The convoy was made up of the German R-boat R 15, the German barges F 545 and F 546 and several other small vessels. R 15 dropped a few depth charges.

(All times are zone -1)
0521 hours - While north of Misurata in position 32°31'N, 15°07'E sighted six ships to the southward. Closed to engage with the gun as they were too small to torpedo.

0544 hours - Opened fire from 800 yards at the rear vessel thought to be a lighter in tow of a tug. At the same moment, the leading vessel come into the moon and was seen to be an E-boat. Both the E-boat and the lighter, now seen to be a self propelled barge, opened a hot fire. At this moment the gun again jammed. P 44 then dived.

0546 hours - After diving 5 depth charges were dropped, all fairly close. It was now thought that the convoy was made up of one E-boat, three self propelled barges and two or three small steamers. The hunt was short and no more depth charges were dropped. (5)

26 Nov 1942
HMS P 44 (Lt. T.E. Barlow, RN) attacked an escorted merchant vessel with two torpedoes about 50 nautical miles north-west of Tripoli, Libya. No hits were obtained. This was most probably the motor vessel Brindisi (1976 GRT, buit 1931) escorted by the torpedo boats Animoso and Giacomo Medici. They had sailed from Tripoli for Sfax and Trapani. At 0230 hours, Brindisi had an accidental fire in No.1 Boiler Room but it was quickly extinguished and does not appear to have been related to P 44’s attack which was unobserved.

(All times are zone -1)
0112 hours - In position 33°24'N, 12°33'E sighted 3 ships bearing 105°. Range was 6 nautical miles.

0125 hours - The targets were identified as a medium seized merchant vessel escorted by two torpedo-boats. Enemy course was estimated to be 315°, range 2.5 nautical miles. Closed at full speed.

0150 hours - Fired two torpedoes from 5000 yards. After 1,5 minutes a faint explosion was heard which was thought to be one of the torpedoes exploding on hitting the bottom in 75 fathoms.

0211 hours - Surfaced and chased the enemy but his speed was to great.

0255 hours - Lost touch. Set course to patrol to the south-east. (5)

30 Nov 1942
HMS P 44 (Lt. T.E. Barlow, RN) ended her 9th war patrol (also 9th in the Mediterranean) at Malta. (5)

11 Dec 1942
HMS P 44 (Lt. J.C.Y. Roxburgh, DSC, RN) departed Malta for her 10th war patrol (also 10th in the Mediterranean). She was ordered to patrol off the Skerki Bank.

For the daily and attack positions of HMS P 44 during this patrol see the map below.

(5)

16 Dec 1942
HMS P 44 (Lt. J.C.Y. Roxburgh, DSC, RN) attacked a convoy made up of the Italian Campania (5247 GRT, built 1918) and the German Rhea (1388 GRT, built 1922). They were escorted by the Italian torpedo boats Groppo and Giuseppe Sirtori. Four torpedoes were fired but no hits were obtained. Rhea observed one torpedo missing her on the starboard side.

(All times are zone -1)
1634 hours - Sighted two merchant vessels escorted by a older type torpedo-boat and an escort what was thought to be a sloop like Eritrea but then smaller. The convoy was northbound and the merchant vessels were of 3500 and 2500 tons and were fairly light. Started attack.

1717 hours - In position 37°46'N, 11°05'E fired four torpedoes from 2000 yards at the two merchant vessels that were overlapping. No hits were obtained. P 44 had gone to 120 feet on firing and had moved off the tracks, keeping stern on to the nearest escort vessel. 5 minutes after firing a hunt started which lasted for about an hour. Only 5 depth charges were dropped but they were not near. (5)

21 Dec 1942
HMS P 44 (Lt. J.C.Y. Roxburgh, DSC, RN) attacked an enemy destroyer or torpedo-boat with two torpedoes about 25 nautical miles north of Marettimo Island. Both torpedoes missed. This was probably the Italian torpedo boat Cigno on A/S search. The attack was not observed.

(All times are zone -1)
0334 hours - In position 38°25'N, 12°04'E sighted an Italian fleet destroyer, thought to be a Maestrale-class. Enemy speed was thought to be 19 knots. Started attack.

0338 hours - Fired the only two available torpedoes from 1500 yards. (P 44 had four torpedoes left, two Mk. II and two Mk. IV. The depth settings of these torpedoes could not be changed while they were in the tubes and as P 44 had received a signal shortly before to attack Italian destroyers the depth setting had to be changed and she was in the middle of doing so). Both torpedoes missed. P 44 had gone to 120 feet on firing. The destroyer turned to port and started a hunt. She was in contact one or twice and hunted P 44 for 4 hours, during which time not a single depth charge was dropped. It was decided she was probably a Partenope-class destroyer bound for Trapani.

0652 hours - No more HE was heard. Returned to periscope depth. Saw the destroyer still hunting about 4 nautical miles astern. (5)

22 Dec 1942
HMS P 44 (Lt. J.C.Y. Roxburgh, DSC, RN) attacked an escorted enemy merchant vessel with two torpedoes about 20 nautical miles north-west of Marettimo Island. No hits were obtained. This was the Italian Etruria (2633 GRT, built 1933) with the German lighters F 478, F 482, F 483 and F 484 and escorted by the torpedo boats Ardito and Angelo Bassini. Two hours later, she was sunk by air attack.

(All times are zone -1)
21 December 1942
2326 hours - Sighted smoke bearing 080°.

2353 hours - Identified one merchant vessel escorted by one destroyer 240°.

2357 hours - Dived in position 38°19'N, 11°49'E. This was about 6 nautical miles ahead of the convoy. After diving the enemy's smoke could still be seen through the periscope.

22 December 1942
0015 hours - The merchant vessel was seen to be a medium-seized one of about 4000 tons. One destroyer was 1500 yards ahead and another destroyer was now seen to be astern. Also four E-boats were part of the screen. Enemy course was 240°, speed 7 knots.

0038 hours - When about to fire the last two remaining torpedoes in position from a range of 2000 yards the destroyer that was ahead of the merchant vessel suddenly turned towards and speeded up. She had detected P 44 on her Asdics. P 44 went deep and prepared to fire by asdics. When the order fire was given this was not heard as the destroyer dropped one depth charge right overhead at the same time. The depth charge exploded very close. The two torpedoes were then fired but 14 seconds too late so they missed. Both destroyers then hunted P 44. They dropped 14 depth charges but these were not close. (5)

24 Dec 1942
HMS P 44 (Lt. J.C.Y. Roxburgh, DSC, RN) ended her 10th war patrol (also 10th in the Mediterranean) at Malta. (5)

4 Jan 1943
HMS P 44 (Lt. J.C.Y. Roxburgh, DSC, RN) departed Malta for her 11th war patrol (also 11th in the Mediterranean). She was ordered to patrol in the Sicilian Channel to the south of the Skerki Bank.

For the daily and attack positions of HMS P 44 during this patrol see the map below.

(5)

6 Jan 1943
HMS P 44 (Lt. J.C.Y. Roxburgh, DSC, RN) is ordered, by signal, to patrol to the north of Marettimo Island. (5)

7 Jan 1943
At 0015 hours, in position 37°57'N, 11°24'E (about 30 nautical miles were of Marettimo Island), HMS P 44 (Lt. J.C.Y. Roxburgh, DSC, RN) sighted two torpedo tracks coming towards. The first torpedo passed was ahead but the second torpedo passed underneath the fore hatch after P 44 had begun to altering away. P 44 then dived and shortly afterwards heard HE of an E-boat approaching. The E-boat was heard to start and stop to listen for half an hour before it disappeared. The identity of this boat has not yet been identified and the attack may be bogus. (5)

11 Jan 1943
HMS P 44 (Lt. J.C.Y. Roxburgh, DSC, RN) was ordered to patrol off the west Calabrian coast and if possible do some train wrecking. Bad weather prevented this order to be carried out. Besides that, few trains were in fact seen on the two days P 44 was off the coast. (5)

17 Jan 1943
HMS P 44 (Lt. J.C.Y. Roxburgh, DSC, RN) torpedoed and sank the Italian destroyer Bombardiere (1654 tons, built 1942) about 20 nautical miles north-west of Isola Marettimo, Sicily, Italy in position 38°04'N 11°49'E. She was escorting the transport Mario Roselli (6835 GRT, built 1942) with the destroyer Legionario. Legionario could not stop to pick up the survivors from fear she would become also a victim of the submarine and could only jettison eight life rafts. The corvettes Antelope, Artemide and Gabbiano sailed from Trapani to search for survivors and found only three officers and forty ratings, all wounded. The cold water must have accounted for a large part of the 174 victims.

(All times are zone -1)
1705 hours - Heard fast diesel HE bearing 257°.

1715 hours - Returned to periscope depth. Sighted a modern 7000 ton merchant vessel escorted by two fleet destroyers on a course of 048°. Enemy speed 13 knots. Started attack.

1727 hours - In position 38°04'N, 11°49'E fired four torpedoes at the merchant vessel from 3000 yards. Went deep on firing and went off the tracks.

1729 hours - Heard one torpedo explosion. All HE of the merchant ship ceased and was not heard again.

1733 hours - A counter attack started. 30 Depth charges were dropped in the next 30 minutes. P 44 meanwhile withdrew to the west keeping stern on to the transmitting destroyer.

1807 hour - HE of the destroyers disappeared. More HE was later heard to the southward forcing P 44 to return to the area of the attack.

1948 hours - HE faded out.

2224 hours - Surfaced in position 38°07'N, 11°41'E. Sighted a stopped E-boat about 3/4 mile away to the north-west. Dived immediately. The hatch was open a bare minute.

2240 hours - The E-boat got underway and started transmitting on Asdic.

2309 hours - Two destroyers and a second E-boat now arrived on the scene from the south-west. P 44 was hunted all through the night preventing her from surfacing to charge the battery and fresh air.

It was not until 1826 hours the next day that P 44 was able to surface after being submerged for 36.5 hours. (5)

20 Jan 1943
HMS P 44 (Lt. J.C.Y. Roxburgh, DSC, RN) ended her 11th war patrol (also 11th in the Mediterranean) at Malta. (5)

1 Feb 1943
HMS P 44 (Lt. J.C.Y. Roxburgh, DSC, RN) departed Malta for her 12th war patrol (also 12th in the Mediterranean). She was ordered to patrol off the east coast of Tunisia between 35'N and 36'N.

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

(5)

8 Feb 1943
While off Sousse, Tunisia, HMS P 44 (Lt. J.C.Y. Roxburgh, DSC, RN) was taken under fire while at periscope depth by a shore battery. The periscope must have been sighted. The gunfire was very accurate and caused some minor defects to her Asdic training gear and log. (5)

12 Feb 1943
At 0924 in 38°58’ N, 10°40’ E, HMS P 44 (Lt. J.C.Y. Roxburgh, DSC, RN) sighted in poor visibility a 1500 ton merchant vessel escorted by a Partenope class torpedo boat. An attack was attempted but was thwarted by the enemy making an alteration of course which brought it in near collision with the submarine. This was the German Skotfoss (1465 GRT, ex Norwegian built 1917) escorted by the torpedo boat Pallade. They had been in company with the German Jaedjoer but the latter had lost contact with them and was sunk by P 43 the previous evening.

15 Feb 1943
HMS United (Lt. J.C.Y. Roxburgh, DSC, RN) ended her 12th war patrol (also 12th in the Mediterranean) at Malta. (5)

27 Feb 1943
HMS United (Lt. J.C.Y. Roxburgh, DSC, RN) departed Malta for her 13th war patrol (also 13th in the Mediterranean). She was ordered to perform a special operation.

A party of four officers and one army private from COPP III was embarked. They were to conduct beach reconnaissance for Operation Husky, the upcoming invasion of Sicily.

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

(5)

28 Feb 1943
During the evening HMS United (Lt. J.C.Y. Roxburgh, DSC, RN) landed a folbot with two of COPP III's party (Lt. P.R.G. Smith of the Royal Engineers and Lt. D. Brand, RNVR) off Gela, Sicily for an inspection of the beach. They successfully did so and returned later the same evening. (5)

1 Mar 1943
During the evening HMS United (Lt. J.C.Y. Roxburgh, DSC, RN) landed a folbot with two of COPP III's party off Gela (again Smith and Brand), Sicily for an inspection of the beach. They failed to return early the next morning.

In fact, they had made it back to Malta when they could not find the submarine. (5)

2 Mar 1943
In the evening, HMS United (Lt. J.C.Y. Roxburgh, DSC, RN), received a signal from Capt. S.10 that the folbot had safely returned to Malta. (5)

8 Mar 1943
During the evening HMS United (Lt. J.C.Y. Roxburgh, DSC, RN) landed a folbot with two of COPP III's party (Lieutenant Hart and Sub Lieutenant Folder) off Cava d'Aliga, Sicily for an inspection of the beach. (5)

9 Mar 1943
At 0204 hours, while waiting for the return of the folbot party, HMS United (Lt. J.C.Y. Roxburgh, DSC, RN) missed an opportunity to sink the Italian submarine Filippo Corridoni transferring from Augusta to Trapani. The enemy submarine passed only 500 yards ahead but United had orders not to attack the enemy while recovering the COPP party. Unfortunately, the folbot failed to return.

10 Mar 1943
HMS United (Lt. J.C.Y. Roxburgh, DSC, RN) ended her 13th war patrol (also 13th in the Mediterranean) at Malta. (5)

21 Mar 1943
HMS United (Lt. J.C.Y. Roxburgh, DSC, RN) departed Malta for her 14th war patrol (also 14th in the Mediterranean). She was ordered to patrol to the north of Sicily.

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

(5)

31 Mar 1943
At 0345 hours in 37°54' N, 11°42' E, HMS United (Lt. J.C.Y. Roxburgh, DSC, RN) sighted a convoy of three merchant ships and two destroyers but was thwarted in her attack when a destroyer turned toward her and she was forced under. These were most likely Belluno (4279 GRT, built 1935, ex French Fort de France) and Pierre Claude (1794 GRT, built 1934, ex French) escorted by the torpedo boats Fortunale, Antares, Enrico Cosenz and Sagittario on passage from Trapani to Tunis.

2 Apr 1943
HMS United (Lt. J.C.Y. Roxburgh, DSC, RN) ended her 14th war patrol (also 14th in the Mediterranean) at Malta. (5)

15 Apr 1943
HMS United (Lt. J.C.Y. Roxburgh, DSC, RN) departed Malta for her 15th war patrol (also 15th in the Mediterranean). She was ordered to patrol off the south coast of Italy.

Before proceeding on patrol A/S exercises were carried out with HMS Pakenham (Cdr. Basil Jones, DSC, RN) and HMS Paladin (Lt.Cdr. L.St.G. Rich, RN).

No log is available for this period so map for this patrol can be displayed. (5)

22 Apr 1943
At 0815 hours in position 38°00’N, 16°13’E, HMS United (Lt. J.C.Y. Roxburgh, DSC, RN) sighted what was at first believed to be a convoy but was then seen to be two Climene class and one Generale class torpedo boats moving slowly to the northeast. The submarine believed they were carrying an A/S sweep and desisted from attack. These were the torpedo boats Tifone and Giuseppe Dezza escorting the damaged torpedo boat Aretusa being towed by the tug Tifeo from Messina to Taranto.

27 Apr 1943
HMS United (Lt. J.C.Y. Roxburgh, DSC, RN) ended her 15th war patrol (also 15th in the Mediterranean) at Malta. (5)

9 May 1943
HMS United (Lt. J.C.Y. Roxburgh, DSC, RN) departed Malta for her 16th war patrol (also 16th in the Mediterranean). She was ordered to perform a special operation. A party of 10 SAS troops was to be landed on Pantelleria. After they had completed their objective they were to be taken off again (Operation Snapdragon).

No log is available for this period so map for this patrol can be displayed. (8)

13 May 1943
HMS United (Lt. J.C.Y. Roxburgh, DSC, RN) ended her 16th war patrol (also 16th in the Mediterranean) at Malta. Bad weather had prevented from landing the SAS troops on Pantelleria. (8)

14 May 1943
HMS United (Lt. J.C.Y. Roxburgh, DSC, RN) departed Malta for her 17th war patrol (also 17th in the Mediterranean). She was ordered to patrol to the north of Sicily.

No log is available for this period so map for this patrol can be displayed. (5)

19 May 1943
HMS United (Lt. J.C.Y. Roxburgh, DSC, RN) attacked an Italian tug with two torpedoes off Raisi Point, Sicily. Both torpedoes missed. This was probably the tug Tifeo proceeding from Trapani to Palermo.

(All times are zone -2)
1620 hours - Sighted a tug towing a lighter bearing 226°. Started attack. The tug was a modern looking vessel of about 350 tons. Enemy course was 077°, speed 7 knots.

1639 hours - In position 38°13'N, 13°05'E fired two torpedoes from 2000 yards. Both torpedoes missed. (5)

26 May 1943
HMS United (Lt. J.C.Y. Roxburgh, DSC, RN) ended her 17th war patrol (also 17th in the Mediterranean) at Malta. (5)

9 Jun 1943
HMS United (Lt. J.C.Y. Roxburgh, DSC, RN) departed Malta for her 18th war patrol (also 18th in the Mediterranean). She was ordered to patrol off Cape Spartivento.

No log is available for this period so map for this patrol can be displayed. (5)

14 Jun 1943
HMS United (Lt. J.C.Y. Roxburgh, DSC, RN) torpedoed and sank the German Ringulv (5155 GRT, built 1902, former French Sainte Marthe, former Norwegian Ringulv, offsite link) one nautical mile south of Capo del Armi in position 37°54'N, 15°42'E. She was escorted by the torpedo boat Giuseppe Cesare Abba who dropped twelve depth charges on the submarine and picked forty survivors, another seven reached the coast in a lifeboat and twenty-five were killed or missing.

(All times are zone -2)
1145 hours - Sighted a merchant vessel of about 5000 tons escorted by a torpedo boat [this was Giuseppe Cesare Abba] and with two aircraft overhead. Started attack.

1236 hours - Fired four torpedoes from 900 yards. 2 hits were obtained and the merchant sank within 5 minutes. After firing the torpedoes Lt. Roxburgh took United down to 120 feet.

From 1242 hours to 1318 hours United was counter attacked by the escorting torpedo boat. In all 20 depth charges were dropped. Close enough to break some 20 lights aboard United.

1416 hours - Returned to periscope depth. Nothing was in sight except for an aircraft that was circling at the place of the attack. United retreated to the south-west. (5)

16 Jun 1943
At 0752 hours (zone -2), HMS United (Lt. J.C.Y. Roxburgh, DSC, RN) sighted a German U-boat in position 37.52'N, 15.44'E. the U-boat was going very fast and a good attack position could not be obtained. Torpedoes were therefore not fired. Shortly afterwards the U-boat made rendezvous with a small Italian patrol vessel and proceeded north to pass through the Straits of Messina. The U-boat in question was U-593 en-route to her patrol area of the North-African coast. She had departed Pola in the Adriatic on the 13th but a defect had forced her to proceed to Messina for repairs. (5)

20 Jun 1943
HMS United (Lt. J.C.Y. Roxburgh, DSC, RN) torpedoed and sank the Italian armed merchant cruiser D 7 / Olbia (3514 GRT, built 1929) about 20 nautical miles south of Cape Spartivento, Italy in position 37°40'N, 16°02'E. She was on a trip from Naples to Brindisi and was hit by two torpedoes. The corvette Gabbiano was sailed to recover survivors.

(All times are zone -2)
1442 hours - Sighted an unescorted merchant vessel. Started attack.

1513 hours - In position 37°40'N, 16°02'E fired four torpedoes from 900 yards. Three hits were claimed. (5)

22 Jun 1943
HMS United (Lt. J.C.Y. Roxburgh, DSC, RN) ended her 18th war patrol (also 18th in the Mediterranean) at Malta. (5)

7 Jul 1943
HMS United (Lt. J.C.Y. Roxburgh, DSC, RN) departed Malta for her 19th war patrol (also 19th in the Mediterranean). She was ordered to patrol off the Gulf of Taranto.

No log is available for this period so map for this patrol can be displayed. (5)

15 Jul 1943
The Italian (transport) submarine Remo (1332 tons, built 1943, offsite link) was torpedoed and sunk in the Gulf of Taranto in position 39°19'N, 17°30'E by the British submarine HMS United (Lt. J.C.Y. Roxburgh, DSC, RN). She was on a trip from Taranto to Naples and this was her first operational sortie. Fitfty-five were killed, her commanding officer, T.V. Salvatore Vassalo, the navigating officer and two ratings were rescued by HMS United.

(All times are zone -2)
1809 hours - Sighted a very small object about 4 nautical miles away.

1814 hours - The object was identified as a submarine. Started attack.

1825 hours - The submarine was identified as being Italian.

1831 hours - Fired four torpedoes from 500 yards. Two hits were obtained. Shortly after the second torpedo hit the stern of the submarine rose out of the water at a 60-degree angle and she sank in four seconds.

1836 hours - Four survivors were seen swimming in the water. At 1849 hours United surfaced and picked them up. The survivors turned out to be the Commanding Officer, a midshipman (who was the Navigating Officer) and two seamen. (5)

16 Jul 1943
At 2217 hours in position 39°19’N, 17°40’E, HMS United (Lt. J.C.Y. Roxburgh, DSC, RN) sighted a submarine making a lot of smoke. As it was inside the area supposedly occupied by HMS Trooper or HMS Tactician, the submarine refrained from attack. In fact, this was the Italian Beilul proceeding from Leros to Taranto. Her diesels were making excessive smoke and upon spotting the British submarine, T.V. Pasquale Beltrame prudently ordered to switch to electric motors. He was uncertain if it was friend of foe and decided to move away. (5)

17 Jul 1943
At 0705 hours in position 39°28’N, 17°24’E, HMS United (Lt. J.C.Y. Roxburgh, DSC, RN) sighted a light cruiser of the Regolo-class, on course 355° at 30-32 knots. It passed at about 8,000 yards from the submarine, too far for any attack. This was Scipione Africano on her way to Taranto after running the gauntlet of the Straits of Messina. (5)

24 Jul 1943
HMS United (Lt. J.C.Y. Roxburgh, DSC, RN) ended her 19th war patrol (also 19th in the Mediterranean) at Malta. (5)

15 Aug 1943
HMS United (Lt. J.C.Y. Roxburgh, DSC, RN) departed Malta for her 20th war patrol (also 20th in the Mediterranean). She was ordered to patrol off the Gulf of Taranto.

No log is available for this period so map for this patrol can be displayed. (5)

30 Aug 1943
HMS United (Lt. J.C.Y. Roxburgh, DSC, RN) ended her 20th war patrol (also 20th in the Mediterranean) at Malta. It had been uneventful. (5)

8 Sep 1943
HMS United (Lt. J.C.Y. Roxburgh, DSC, RN) departed Malta for passage to the U.K. where she was to refit. Off Malta she joined convoy KMS 24.

For the daily positions of HMS United during this passage see the map below.

(5)

10 Sep 1943
At 1050 hours, HMS United (Lt. J.C.Y. Roxburgh, DSC, RN) sighted the Italian Battlefleet on her way to surrender at Malta. (5)

13 Sep 1943
HMS United (Lt. J.C.Y. Roxburgh, DSC, RN) arrived at Gibraltar. (5)

16 Sep 1943
HMS United (Lt. J.C.Y. Roxburgh, DSC, RN) departed Gibraltar for her 21th war patrol. She was ordered to proceed to the U.K. En-route she was to patrol in the Bay of Biscay for a short anti-U-boat patrol. Nothing was sighted.

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

(5)

1 Oct 1943
HMS United (Lt. J.C.Y. Roxburgh, DSC, RN) arrived at Plymouth. She was escorted in by HMS Olvina (A/Skr.Lt. J. Howson, RNR). (5)

4 Oct 1943
HMS United (Lt. J.C.Y. Roxburgh, DSC, RN) was taken in hand for refit at the Devonport Dockyard.

24 Feb 1944
After completing her refit at the Devonport Dockyard, HMS United (Lt. N.R. Wood, RN) conducted exercises off Plymouth. (9)

25 Feb 1944
HMS United (Lt. N.R. Wood, RN) conducted exercises off Plymouth. (9)

26 Feb 1944
HMS United (Lt. N.R. Wood, RN) conducted exercises off Plymouth. (9)

27 Feb 1944
HMS United (Lt. N.R. Wood, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Plymouth together with HMS Tartar (Cdr. St. J.R.J. Tyrwhitt, DSC, RN) and HMCS Huron (Lt.Cdr. H.S. Rayner, DSC, RCN). (9)

28 Feb 1944
HMS United (Lt. N.R. Wood, RN) conducted exercises off Plymouth. (9)

29 Feb 1944
HMS United (Lt. N.R. Wood, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Plymouth together with HMS Tartar (Cdr. St. J.R.J. Tyrwhitt, DSC, RN), HMCS Haida (Cdr. H.G. De Wolf, RCN) and HMCS Huron (Lt.Cdr. H.S. Rayner, DSC, RCN). (9)

1 Mar 1944
HMS United (Lt. N.R. Wood, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Plymouth together with with ML 159 (T/Lt. B.D. Gerrans, RNVR), ML 183 (T/Lt. A.J. Wright, RNVR) and ML 184 (T/Lt. R.W.A. Winter, RNVR) and later with HMCS Huron (Lt.Cdr. H.S. Rayner, DSC, RCN) and HMCS Athabascan (Lt.Cdr. J.H. Stubbs, RCN). (10)

3 Mar 1944
HMS United (Lt. N.R. Wood, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Plymouth with ML 159 (T/Lt. B.D. Gerrans, RNVR), ML 183 (T/Lt. A.J. Wright, RNVR) and ML 184 (T/Lt. R.W.A. Winter, RNVR) and later with HMS Melbreak (Lt. G.E.C.G. Baines, RN) and HMCS Huron (Lt.Cdr. H.S. Rayner, DSC, RCN). (10)

4 Mar 1944
HMS United (Lt. N.R. Wood, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Plymouth with ML 159 (T/Lt. B.D. Gerrans, RNVR), ML 183 (T/Lt. A.J. Wright, RNVR) and ML 184 (T/Lt. R.W.A. Winter, RNVR), HMS Melbreak (Lt. G.E.C.G. Baines, RN), HMIS Godavari (A/Capt. J.W. Jefford, OBE, RIN), HMS Neave (T/Lt. T. Ross, RNVR) and HMS Skomer (A/Skr.Lt. D.E.S. Mair, DSO, RNR). (10)

8 Mar 1944
HMS Unison (T/Lt. P.C.S. Pritchard, RNR) and HMS United (Lt. N.R. Wood, RN) departed Plymouth for Rothesay. They were escorted HMS Herschell (T/Lt. J.E. Freestone, RNR) and HMS Daffodil (Cdr.(Retd.) S.F. Russell, RN). (11)

10 Mar 1944
HMS United (Lt. N.R. Wood, RN) arrived at Rothesay. HMS United was now assigned to training duties and operated mostly from Stornoway and Tobermory. (10)

13 Mar 1944
HMS United (Lt. N.R. Wood, RN) departed Rothesay for Stornoway. She made the passage together with HMS H 43 (Lt. M.D. Hutley, RNR). They were escorted by HMS Blade (T/A/Lt.Cdr. S.T. Wenlock, RNR). At 0810/14, near Tobermory Blade and H 43 left and United joined her new escort, HMS Persian (Lt.Cdr. A. Ecclestone, RN) for onward passage to Stornoway where they arrived at 2358/14. (10)

16 Mar 1944
HMS United (Lt. N.R. Wood, RN) shifted from Stronoway to Tobermory and back. She was escorted by HMS Grenadier (A/Skr.Lt. A.G. Day, RNR). (10)

18 Mar 1944
HMS United (Lt. N.R. Wood, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Stornoway together with HMS Persian (Lt.Cdr. A. Ecclestone, RN). (10)

20 Mar 1944
HMS United (Lt. N.R. Wood, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Stornoway together with HMS Persian (Lt.Cdr. A. Ecclestone, RN). (10)

22 Mar 1944
HMS United (Lt. N.R. Wood, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Stornoway together with HMS Grenadier (A/Skr.Lt. A.G. Day, RNR). (10)

23 Mar 1944
HMS United (Lt. N.R. Wood, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Stornoway together with HMS Lancer (A/Skr.Lt. J.A. Cornelius, RNR) and HMS Grenadier (A/Skr.Lt. A.G. Day, RNR). (10)

24 Mar 1944
HMS United (Lt. N.R. Wood, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Stornoway together with HMS Lancer (A/Skr.Lt. J.A. Cornelius, RNR) and HMS Grenadier (A/Skr.Lt. A.G. Day, RNR). (10)

26 Mar 1944
HMS United (Lt. N.R. Wood, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Stornoway together with HMCS Hespeler (T/Lt.Cdr. N.S.C. Dickinson, RCNVR). (10)

27 Mar 1944
HMS United (Lt. N.R. Wood, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Stornoway together with HMCS Hespeler (T/Lt.Cdr. N.S.C. Dickinson, RCNVR) and HMS Lancer (A/Skr.Lt. J.A. Cornelius, RNR). (10)

28 Mar 1944
HMS United (Lt. N.R. Wood, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Stornoway together with HMCS Hespeler (T/Lt.Cdr. N.S.C. Dickinson, RCNVR) and HMS Lancer (A/Skr.Lt. J.A. Cornelius, RNR). (10)

29 Mar 1944
HMS United (Lt. N.R. Wood, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Stornoway together with HMS Rifleman (Lt. C.L. Carroll, DSC, RNR), HMS Man o' War (T/Lt. P.W. Arnold, RNVR) and HMS Southern Shore (Skr. S. Hearne, RNR).

Later the same day she departed Stornoway for Tobermory. (10)

30 Mar 1944
HMS United (Lt. N.R. Wood, RN) arrived at Tobermory. (10)

3 Apr 1944
HMS United (Lt. N.R. Wood, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Tobermory together with HMS Whiteaker (Lt. G.P.W. Edwards, RN) and HMS Rupert (Lt. P.C.S. Black, RN). (12)

4 Apr 1944
HMS United (Lt. N.R. Wood, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Tobermory together with HMS Rowley (Lt.Cdr. F.J.G. Jones, RD, RNR) and HMS Retalick (Lt. J.S. Brownrigg, RN). (12)

5 Apr 1944
HMS United (Lt. N.R. Wood, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Tobermory together with HMS Spragge (Lt.Cdr. G.S. Grant, RD, RNR) and HMS Stockham (T/A/Lt.Cdr. B.C. Hamilton, RNR). (12)

6 Apr 1944
HMS United (Lt. N.R. Wood, RN) shifted from Tobermory to Oban where she was to fuel. She was escorted by HMS LCT 21. (12)

8 Apr 1944
HMS United (Lt. N.R. Wood, RN) shifted from Oban to Tobermory. She was escorted by HMS ML 453 (T/Lt. L.V. Horne, RNVR). (12)

9 Apr 1944
HMS United (Lt. N.R. Wood, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Tobermory together with HMS Spragge (Lt.Cdr. G.S. Grant, RD, RNR), HMS Duff (T/A/Lt.Cdr. F. Brock, RCNVR), HMS Waldegrave (Lt. T. Hay, RN) and HMS Narborough (Lt.Cdr. W.R. Muttram, DSC, RN). (12)

10 Apr 1944
HMS United (Lt. N.R. Wood, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Tobermory together with HMS Waldegrave (Lt. T. Hay, RN) and HMS Narborough (Lt.Cdr. W.R. Muttram, DSC, RN). (12)

11 Apr 1944
HMS United (Lt. N.R. Wood, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Tobermory together with HMS Havelock (Lt.Cdr. R. Hart, DSC and Bar, RN), HMS Tyler (Lt. C.H. Ranking, RN), HMS Dumbarton Castle (T/A/Lt.Cdr. P.F. Broadhead, RNR) and HMS Berkeley Castle (T/Lt. F.A. Darrah, RNVR). (12)

15 Apr 1944
HMS United (Lt. N.R. Wood, RN) conducted several practice attacks off Tobermory on HMS Lady Sharazad. (12)

16 Apr 1944
HMS United (Lt. N.R. Wood, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Tobermory together with HMS Monnow (Cdr. E.G. Skinner, DSC, RD, RCNR), HMS Havelock (Lt.Cdr. R. Hart, DSC and Bar, RN), La Surprise. (12)

19 Apr 1944
HMS United (Lt. N.R. Wood, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Tobermory together with HMS Lapwing (Cdr.(Retd.) E.C. Hulton, RN), HMS Monnow (Cdr. E.G. Skinner, DSC, RD, RCNR) and HMS Knaresborough Castle (Lt. J.R. Freeman, RNR). (12)

20 Apr 1944
HMS United (Lt. N.R. Wood, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Tobermory together with HMS Knaresborough Castle (Lt. J.R. Freeman, RNR), HMS Monnow (Cdr. E.G. Skinner, DSC, RD, RCNR), HMCS Teme (T/Lt.Cdr. D.G. Jeffrey, DSO, RCNR) and HMS Lapwing (Cdr.(Retd.) E.C. Hulton, RN). (12)

21 Apr 1944
HMS United (Lt. N.R. Wood, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Tobermory together with HMCS Teme (T/Lt.Cdr. D.G. Jeffrey, DSO, RCNR), HMS Jed (Lt.Cdr. R.S. Miller, DSC, RNR), HMS Highlander (Cdr. D.A. Rayner, DSC, RNVR) and La Surprise. (12)

22 Apr 1944
HMS United (Lt. N.R. Wood, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Tobermory together with HMS Highlander (Cdr. D.A. Rayner, DSC, RNVR), La Surprise, HMS Loch Fada (Lt.Cdr. B.A. Rogers, RD, RNR) and HMS Jed (Lt.Cdr. R.S. Miller, DSC, RNR). (12)

27 Apr 1944
HMS United (Lt. N.R. Wood, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Tobermory together with HMS Jed (Lt.Cdr. R.S. Miller, DSC, RNR), La Surprise, HMCS Teme (T/Lt.Cdr. D.G. Jeffrey, DSO, RCNR) and HMS Loch Fada (Lt.Cdr. B.A. Rogers, RD, RNR). (12)

28 Apr 1944
HMS United (Lt. N.R. Wood, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Tobermory together with HMS Loch Fada (Lt.Cdr. B.A. Rogers, RD, RNR), HMCS Teme (T/Lt.Cdr. D.G. Jeffrey, DSO, RCNR), HMS Jed (Lt.Cdr. R.S. Miller, DSC, RNR) and HMS Tintagel Castle (Lt. R. Atkinson, DSC and Bar, RNR). (12)

29 Apr 1944
HMS United (Lt. N.R. Wood, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Tobermory together with HMS Tintagel Castle (Lt. R. Atkinson, DSC and Bar, RNR), HMS Loch Fada (Lt.Cdr. B.A. Rogers, RD, RNR) and HMCS Teme (T/Lt.Cdr. D.G. Jeffrey, DSO, RCNR). (12)

3 May 1944
HMS United (Lt. N.R. Wood, RN) departed Tobermory for Rothesay. She made the passage together with HMS H 43 (Lt. F.R. Lawrence, RN). During the passage to Oban they were escorted by HMS Clorinde (T/Lt. M.L. Patterson, RNVR). Off Oban escort was taken over by HMS Kihna (A/Cdr.(Retd.) A.R.W. Sayle, RD, RNR). Also HMS Una (Lt. C.A.J. Nicholl, RN) joined for the passage to Rothesay. (13)

4 May 1944
HMS United (Lt. N.R. Wood, RN) arrived at Rothesay. (13)

9 May 1944
HMS United (Lt. N.R. Wood, RN) conducted exercises in the Clyde area together with HMS Safari (Lt.Cdr.(Retd.) J.R.G. Harvey, RN). (13)

12 May 1944
HMS United (Lt. N.R. Wood, RN) conducted exercises in the Clyde area. (13)

15 May 1944
During 15/16 May 1944, HMS United (Lt. N.R. Wood, RN), conducted exercises in the Clyde area. These included night exercises. (13)

18 May 1944
HMS United (Lt. N.R. Wood, RN), HMS H 34 (Lt. R.L. Jay, RN) and HMS H 44 (Lt. P.N. Joyce, RN) departed Rothesay for Londonderry. They were escorted by HMS Kihna (A/Cdr.(Retd.) A.R.W. Sayle, RD, RNR). (13)

19 May 1944
HMS United (Lt. N.R. Wood, RN) arrived at Lough Foyle.

Later the same day A/S exercises were carried out together with HMCS Port Colborne (T/Lt.Cdr. C.J. Angus, RCNR), HMCS Saint John (A/Lt.Cdr. W.R. Stacey, RCNR) and another vessel of the Royal Canadian Navy. (13)

22 May 1944
HMS United (Lt. N.R. Wood, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Lough Foyle together with aircraft and later with HMCS Saint John (A/Lt.Cdr. W.R. Stacey, RCNR). (13)

23 May 1944
HMS United (Lt. N.R. Wood, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Lough Foyle together with HMS Loch Fada (Lt.Cdr. B.A. Rogers, RD, RNR), HMS Lochy (Lt.Cdr. W.J.> Roberts, RNR) and HMS Cam (Lt.Cdr. J.P. Smythe, RD, RNR). (13)

24 May 1944
HMS United (Lt. N.R. Wood, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Lough Foyle together with HMS Loch Fada (Lt.Cdr. B.A. Rogers, RD, RNR), HMS Lochy (Lt.Cdr. W.J.> Roberts, RNR) and HMS Cam (Lt.Cdr. J.P. Smythe, RD, RNR). (13)

25 May 1944
HMS United (Lt. N.R. Wood, RN) departed Lough Foyle (Londonderry) for Rothesay. She was escorted by HMS Kihna (A/Cdr.(Retd.) A.R.W. Sayle, RD, RNR). (13)

25 May 1944
HMS United (Lt. N.R. Wood, RN) arrived at Rothesay. (13)

29 May 1944
HMS United (Lt. N.R. Wood, RN) departed Rothesay for Fishguard. She made the passage together with HMS Sealion (Lt. P.E. Newstead, DSC, RN). They were escorted by HMS Blade (T/A/Lt.Cdr. S.T. Wenlock, RNR). (13)

30 May 1944
HMS United (Lt. N.R. Wood, RN) arrived at Fishguard. (13)

2 Jun 1944
HMS United (Lt. N.R. Wood, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Fishguard together with aircraft. (14)

3 Jun 1944
HMS United (Lt. N.R. Wood, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Fishguard together with aircraft. (14)

5 Jun 1944
HMS United (Lt. N.R. Wood, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Fishguard together with aircraft. (14)

6 Jun 1944
HMS United (Lt. N.R. Wood, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Fishguard together with aircraft. (14)

9 Jun 1944
During the night of 9/10 June 1944, HMS United (Lt. N.R. Wood, RN), conducted A/S exercises off Fishguard together with aircraft. (14)

11 Jun 1944
HMS United (Lt. N.R. Wood, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Fishguard together with aircraft. (14)

12 Jun 1944
HMS United (Lt. N.R. Wood, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Fishguard together with aircraft. (14)

13 Jun 1944
HMS United (Lt. N.R. Wood, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Fishguard together with aircraft. (14)

14 Jun 1944
HMS United (Lt. N.R. Wood, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Fishguard together with aircraft. (14)

16 Jun 1944
During the night of 16/17 June 1944, HMS United (Lt. N.R. Wood, RN), conducted A/S exercises off Fishguard together with aircraft. (14)

18 Jun 1944
During the night of 18/19 June 1944, HMS United (Lt. N.R. Wood, RN), conducted A/S exercises off Fishguard together with aircraft. (14)

21 Jun 1944
HMS United (Lt. N.R. Wood, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Fishguard together with aircraft. (14)

25 Jun 1944
During 25-29 June 1944, HMS United (Lt. N.R. Wood, RN), conducted A/S exercises off Fishguard together with aircraft. These included night exercises. (14)

30 Jun 1944
HMS United (Lt. N.R. Wood, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Fishguard together with aircraft. (14)

3 Jul 1944
During 3-6 July 1944, HMS United (Lt. N.R. Wood, RN), conducted A/S exercises off Fishguard together with aircraft. These included night exercises. (15)

7 Jul 1944
During the night of 7/8 July 1944, HMS United (Lt. N.R. Wood, RN), conducted A/S exercises off Fishguard together with aircraft. (15)

9 Jul 1944
During 9-12 July 1944, HMS United (Lt. N.R. Wood, RN), conducted A/S exercises off Fishguard together with aircraft. These included night exercises. (15)

14 Jul 1944
During the night of 14/15 July 1944, HMS United (Lt. N.R. Wood, RN), conducted A/S exercises off Fishguard together with aircraft. (15)

17 Jul 1944
During 17-21 July 1944, HMS United (Lt. N.R. Wood, RN), conducted A/S exercises off Fishguard together with aircraft. These included night exercises. (15)

23 Jul 1944
During the night of 23/24 July 1944, HMS United (Lt. M.D. Hutley, RNR), conducted A/S exercises off Fishguard together with aircraft. (15)

25 Jul 1944
HMS United (Lt. M.D. Hutley, RNR) departed Fishguard for Rothesay. She was escorted by HMS Blade (T/A/Lt.Cdr. S.T. Wenlock, RNR). (15)

26 Jul 1944
HMS United (Lt. M.D. Hutley, RNR) arrived at Rothesay. (15)

31 Jul 1944
HMS United (Lt. M.H. Hutley, RNR) was docked at Rothesay.

As there are no logs available after July 1944 for this submarine the date of undocking is currently not known to us. (15)

14 Aug 1944
HMS United (Lt. M.D. Hutley, RNR), HMS Upright (Lt. J.A.L. Wilkinson, RN) and HMS Vitality (Lt. K.S. Renshaw, DSC, RNR) departed Rothesay under escort of HMS Milford (Lt.Cdr. G.G. Slade, RN).

The next day HMS United and HMS Upright set off for St.Johns, Newfoundland, Canada. They were escorted by HMS Northern Sky (T/Lt. G.O.T.D. Henderson, RNVR). (16)

24 Aug 1944
HMS United (Lt. M.D. Hutley, RNR) arrived at St.Johns. (16)

2 Sep 1944
HMS HMS United (Lt. M.D. Hutley, RNR) and HMS Upright (Lt. J.A.L. Wilkinson, RN) departed St.Johns for Argentia, Newfoundland, Canada. They were escorted by the Canadian minesweeper HMCS Red Deer (T/Lt. D.B.D. Ross, RCNVR). (17)

3 Sep 1944
HMS United (Lt. M.D. Hutley, RNR) and HMS Upright (Lt. J.A.L. Wilkinson, RN) arrived at Argentia. (17)

10 Sep 1944
HMS United (Lt. M.D. Hutley, RNR) and HMS Upright (Lt. J.A.L. Wilkinson, RN) departed Argentia for Halifax. They were escorted by the Canadian minesweeper HMCS Swift Current (T/Lt. K.D. Heath, RCNVR). (17)

12 Sep 1944
HMS United (Lt. M.D. Hutley, RNR) and HMS Upright (Lt. J.A.L. Wilkinson, RN) both arrived at Halifax. (17)

18 Sep 1944
HMS United (Lt. M.D. Hutley, RNR) and HMS Upright (Lt. J.A.L. Wilkinson, RN) departed Halifax for Bermuda. They were escorted by the Canadian corvette HMCS Rosthern (T/Lt. S.R.P. Annet, RCNVR). (17)

22 Sep 1944
HMS United (Lt. M.D. Hutley, RNR) and HMS Upright (Lt. J.A.L. Wilkinson, RN) both arrived at Bermuda where they were to participate in A/S training during the work-up periods of (new) escort vessels. (17)

27 Mar 1945
HMS Upright (Lt. J.A.L. Wilkinson, RN) conducted attack exercises with HMS United (Lt. M.D. Hutley, RNR). (18)

26 Jun 1945
HMS United (Lt. M.D. Hutley, RNR) departed Bermuda for the Philadelphia Navy Yard. (19)

1 Jul 1945
HMS United (Lt. M.D. Hutley, RNR) arrived at the Philadelphia Navy Yard.

16 Jul 1945
HMS United (Lt. M.D. Hutley, RNR) departed the Philadelphia Navy Yard for New London, Connecticut, USA.

17 Jul 1945
HMS United (Lt. M.D. Hutley, RNR) arrived at New London, Connecticut, USA from the Philadelphia Navy Yard.

30 Jul 1945
HMS United (Lt. M.D. Hutley, RNR) departed New London, Connecticut, USA for Digby, Canada.

1 Aug 1945
HMS United (Lt. M.D. Hutley, RNR) arrived at Digby.

1 Sep 1945
HMS United (Lt. M.D. Hutley, RNR) arrived at Bermuda. (19)

9 Sep 1945
HMS United (Lt. M.D. Hutley, RNR) departed Bermuda for Rothesay. (19)

24 Sep 1945
HMS United (Lt. M.D. Hutley, RNR) arrived at Rothesay. (19)

22 Oct 1945
HMS United (Lt. M.D. Hutley, RNR) was placed in reserve. (19)

Sources

  1. ADM 173/17399
  2. ADM 199/1222
  3. ADM 173/17400
  4. ADM 173/17401
  5. ADM 199/1820
  6. ADM 199/651 + ADM 234/353
  7. ADM 173/17405
  8. ADM199/1347
  9. ADM 173/19216
  10. ADM 173/19217
  11. ADM 173/19214
  12. ADM 173/19218
  13. ADM 173/19219
  14. ADM 173/19220
  15. ADM 173/19221
  16. ADM 173/19285
  17. ADM 173/19286
  18. ADM 173/20176
  19. ADM 199/2573

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


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