Allied Warships

HMS Virtue (P 75)

Submarine of the V class

NavyThe Royal Navy
TypeSubmarine
ClassV 
PennantP 75 
Built byVickers Armstrong (Barrow-in-Furness, U.K.) 
Ordered5 Dec 1941 
Laid down17 Feb 1943 
Launched29 Nov 1943 
Commissioned29 Feb 1944 
End service 
History

Scrapped at Cochin, India on 19 May 1946.

 

Commands listed for HMS Virtue (P 75)

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

CommanderFromTo
1Lt. Rudland Dallas Cairns, DSC, RN1 Dec 19433 Aug 1945
2Lt. Iwan Geoffrey Raikes, DSC, RN3 Aug 1945

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Notable events involving Virtue include:


The history of HMS Virtue 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 and/or the identity of escort vessels) is kindly provided by Mr. Platon Alexiades, a naval researcher from Canada.

This page was last updated in November 2019.

28 Feb 1944
Thorough (Lt.Cdr. J.G. Hopkins, RN) and Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) both departed from their builders yard at Barrow for Holy Loch. They were escorted by HMS Quadrille (T/Lt. G.A. Peat, RNVR). (1)

29 Feb 1944
Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) conducted acceptance trials in the Clyde area following which she was commissioned at Holy Loch.

2 Mar 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) conducted exercises in the Clyde area. (2)

3 Mar 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) conducted exercises in the Clyde area. (2)

4 Mar 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) conducted exercises in the Clyde area. (2)

6 Mar 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) shifted from Holy Loch to Arrochar. (2)

6 Mar 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) participated in A/S exercises at/off Scapa Flow. (3)

7 Mar 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) conducted torpedo discharge trials off Arrochar. (2)

8 Mar 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) conducted torpedo discharge trials off Arrochar. (2)

9 Mar 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) shifted from Arrochar to Holy Loch. (2)

10 Mar 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) is docked in AFD 7 at Holy Loch. She was undocked later the same day. (2)

11 Mar 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) conducted exercises in the Clyde area. The included night exercises and practice attacks on HMS Sheffield (Cdr. G.M. Sladen, DSO, DSC, RN). (2)

12 Mar 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) returned to Holy Loch on completion of last night's exercises. (2)

13 Mar 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) conducted exercises in the Clyde area. (2)

15 Mar 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) conducted trials in the Clyde area. (2)

16 Mar 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) conducted RD/F trials off Campbeltown. Upon completion of these she proceeded to Campbeltown. (2)

17 Mar 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) shifted from Campbeltown to Holy Loch. (2)

18 Mar 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) conducted exercises in the Clyde area. These included night exercises. (2)

19 Mar 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) returned to Holy Loch on completion of last night's exercises. (2)

20 Mar 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) conducted noise trials in Loch Goil. (2)

21 Mar 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) departed Holy Loch for Scapa Flow. She was escorted by HMS La Capricieuse (Lt.Cdr.(Retd.) C.M. Norman, RN). (2)

23 Mar 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) arrived at Scapa Flow. (2)

24 Mar 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) participated in A/S exercises at/off Scapa Flow. (2)

25 Mar 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) participated in A/S exercises at/off Scapa Flow. (2)

27 Mar 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) participated in A/S exercises at/off Scapa Flow. (2)

28 Mar 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) participated in A/S exercises at/off Scapa Flow. (2)

29 Mar 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) participated in A/S exercises at/off Scapa Flow. (2)

30 Mar 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) participated in A/S exercises at/off Scapa Flow. (2)

31 Mar 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) participated in A/S exercises at/off Scapa Flow. (2)

1 Apr 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) participated in A/S exercises at/off Scapa Flow. (3)

3 Apr 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) participated in A/S exercises at/off Scapa Flow. (3)

5 Apr 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) participated in A/S exercises at/off Scapa Flow. (3)

7 Apr 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) departed Scapa Flow for Holy Loch. She joined HMS Terrapin (Lt.Cdr. D.S.R. Martin, DSO and 2 bars, RN) and HMS Sardonyx (T/A/Lt.Cdr. E. Playne, RNVR) at sea. (3)

9 Apr 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) arrived at Holy Loch. (3)

11 Apr 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) conducted exercises in the Clyde area. These included night exercises. (3)

12 Apr 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) returned to Holy Loch on completion of last night's exercises. (3)

14 Apr 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) conducted log calibration trials in Loch Long. (3)

15 Apr 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) conducted exercises in the Clyde area. These included night exercises. (3)

16 Apr 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) returned to Holy Loch on completion of last night's exercises. (3)

17 Apr 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) departed Holy Loch for a few day's of exercises. (3)

19 Apr 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) proceeded to Larne on completion of a few day's of exercises. (3)

20 Apr 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) participated in exercises off Larne. (3)

21 Apr 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) participated in exercises off Larne. (3)

22 Apr 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) participated in exercises off Larne. (3)

23 Apr 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) participated in exercises off Larne. (3)

24 Apr 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) participated in exercises off Larne. (3)

25 Apr 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) participated in exercises off Larne. (3)

27 Apr 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) participated in exercises off Larne. (3)

28 Apr 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) participated in exercises off Larne. (3)

29 Apr 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) participated in exercises off Larne. (3)

30 Apr 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) participated in exercises off Larne. (3)

1 May 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) participated in exercises off Larne. (4)

3 May 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) shifted from Larne to Holy Loch. (4)

5 May 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) conducted exercises in the Clyde area. (4)

17 May 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) shifted from Holy Loch to Campbeltown. En-route exercises were carried out. (4)

18 May 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) departed Campbeltown for Lerwick. She was escorted by HMS Sardonyx (T/A/Lt.Cdr. E. Playne, RNVR) at sea. (4)

20 May 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) arrived at Lerwick.

She departed for her 1st war patrol later the same day. She was ordered to patrol in the Norwegian Sea on an anti-uboat patrol.

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

(5)

27 May 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) ended her 1st war patrol at Lerwick. She departed for Holy Loch later the same day. (5)

29 May 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) arrived at Holy Loch.

[As no log for June 1944 is available for HMS Virtue no details for this month can be given other then the ones currently listed.] (4)

12 Jun 1944
HrMs O 19 (Lt.Cdr. A. van Karnebeek, RNN) and HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) departed Holy Loch for the passage to Malta (Virtue to Gibraltar). They made the passage in convoy OS 80 / KMS 54. (6)

23 Jun 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) arrived at Gibraltar. (7)

4 Jul 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) conducted exercises off Gibraltar. (8)

5 Jul 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) conducted exercises off Gibraltar. These included night exercises. (8)

6 Jul 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) conducted exercises off Gibraltar. (8)

10 Jul 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) conducted exercises off Gibraltar. On completion of these she set course for Malta. She joined convoy UGS 46 for the passage.

For the daily positions of HMS Virtue during the passage from Gibraltar to Malta see the map below.

(8)

15 Jul 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) arrived at Malta. (8)

18 Jul 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) conducted exercises off Malta. (8)

21 Jul 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) departed Malta for her 2nd war patrol (1st in the Mediterranean). She was ordered to patrol in the southern Aegean.

For the daily and attack positions of HMS Virtue during this patrol see the map below. [Note; no daily noon positions are known for the period of 25/28 July 1944 as there are neither noted in the logbook or the patrol report.]

(9)

26 Jul 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) fires four torpedoes at the Greek (under German control) sailing vessel PI 07 / Doxa (504 GRT) north of Suda Bay, Crete. All torpedoes missed their target.

(All times are zone -2)
2300 hours - Aircraft flares were dropped to the west and two ships were sighted in the glare. A third ship was seen firing tracer ammunition but the hull could not be seen. An aircraft report had been received 10 minutes before regarding a medium seized merchant vessel and two escorts to the west.

2301 hours- Went to night alarm and increased to full speed. Enemy was bearing 240°, range 6 nautical miles. Set course 210° to intercept.

2303 hours - Flares burned out and nothing was in sight anymore.

2335 hours - Radar contact bearing 242°, range 5900 yards.

2350 hours - Sighted a small merchant ship of about 500 tons. No other vessels were sighted. Range was 3000 yards. Started attack. Enemy course was 175°, speed 9 knots.

2400 hours - In position 36°00'N, 24°20'E fired four torpedoes from 1700 yards and then dived.

0005 (27th) hours - Heard four explosions, most likely end of run detonations. No more HE of the target was heard though. (9)

29 Jul 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) attacked the German sailing vessel Seeräuber (184 GRT) with gunfire following which she also attacked another vessel with three torpedoes south of Milos, Greece. No hits were obtained. This was possibly the derelict PI 07 / Doxa (504 GRT) which was being towed by the motor minesweeper R 34.

(All times are zone -2)
0355 hours - Obtained a radar contact to the westward at a range of 4000 yards. Closed to investigate. It turned out to be a caique of about 80 tons.

0410 hours - Opened fire with the 3" gun from 1000 yards on the enemy's starboard beam. The enemy replied with machine gun fire.

0414 hours - Disengaged and dived to open the range. Visibility was only 2000 yards.

0435 hours - Surfaced. Position was 36°27'N, 24°18'E. The target was 5000 yards ahead. Set off in pursuit at full speed. Visibility was increasing.

0440 hours - Opened fire with the 3" gun from 4500 yards. The enemy returned fire but his shot was falling short.

0450 hours - A round jammed in the gun. The gun was cleared after two minutes.

0455 hours - Several hits were observed but they did not appear to have any effect on the enemy. Range was now 3000 yards.

0500 hours - Again the gun jammed temporarily. The caique had now entered a mined area so reluctantly broke off the action. Retired to the south on the surface.

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

0520 hours - Sighted two vessels bearing 170°, range 7 nautical miles. Dived.

0540 hours - The vessels, two large caiques, seemed to be approaching Milos on a course of 005° at a speed of 8 knots. Two Arado 196 seaplanes were escorting them.

0619 hours - In position 36°24'N, 24°20'E fired three torpedoes at the largest caique from 600 yards. Went deep on firing. No hits were obtained.

0621 hours - Heard two explosions, most likely the aircraft dropping bombs.

0624 hours - Two depth charges were dropped.

0627 hours - Returned to periscope depth. The enemy was seen sailing on. Retired to the south. (9)

30 Jul 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) fires a torpedo against the small German tanker Dresden (120 GRT) east of Ananes Island, Greece. The torpedo however misses its target.

[so far (November 2019), we have been unable to indentify the escort vessel.]

(All times are zone -2)
0447 hours - Sighted two vessels to the south. Set course to intercept.

0450 hours - Identified the vessels as Dresden and an escorting E or R-boat which was proceeding ahead. Visibility was not good so it was not possible to obtained the range.

0500 hours - Noticed a tow rope coming from Dresden's bow.

0501 hours - In position 36°32'N, 24°18'E fired one torpedo set to run on the surface from a range of 1200 yards. The torpedo missed astern. It was then relised that the E or R boat was backing up the Dresden's engine and that she was not being towed as a 'dead ship'. Their speed must have been around 12 knots and not 8 as was anticipated. No counter attack developed.

0510 hours - Commenced retiring to the south. (9)

2 Aug 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) ended her 2nd war patrol (1st in the Mediterranean) at Malta. (9)

3 Aug 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) is docked in No.1 dock at Malta. (10)

11 Aug 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) is undocked. (10)

13 Aug 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) departed Malta for her 3rd war patrol (2nd in the Mediterranean). She was ordered to patrol in the southern Aegean.

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

(9)

16 Aug 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) sank three sailing vessels with gunfire and ramming east of Cape Maleas. Two of these vessels were the PI 2180 / Agios Georgios and HYD 773 / Maria. [so far (November 2019), we have been unable to indentify the third vessel.]

In the evening Virtue attacked the German sailing vessel PI 014 / Nachtigall with gunfire.

(All times are zone -2)
0805 hours - Sighted two small caiques, estimated at 20 and 25 tons. One northbound, the other one southbound. Both vessels were flying the Greek flag. Surfaced and sank both vessels by ramming. The crew were induced to abandon ship by firing a 3" round short. The slightly larger (northbound) caique's crew manned their boat but the other had no boat so they took to the water. Virtue then picked them up.

0820 hours - A third caique of 20 tons was now sighted. It was sunk with three rounds of 3" after the crew of four had jumped overboard. We also picked them up. Position of these sinkings was 36°29'N, 23°19'E.

The crews of the caique were put on a small fishing vessel late in the afternoon.

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

2145 hours - In position 36°53'N, 23°07'E sighted a 60 tons caique in position 020°, Cape Ieraka, 7 nautical miles. Closed to 1000 yards.

2215 hours - Opened fire and fired eight rounds. No hits were obtained. The target altered course and opened up a very inaccurate machine gun fire. The gun's crew could not pick up the target at a range of 1500 yards as the night was very dark.

2220 hours - Range was now 1000 yards. The enemy now fired some accurate bursts of machine gun fire.

2235 hours - Re-opened fire with starshell from 2500 yards. The target was illuminated with the third round. The H.E. shell loaded however jammed in the breech.

2240 hours - The round was ejected.

2250 hours - The caique was lost from sight against the land. Also radar did not pick up the target. Broke off the action. (9)

19 Aug 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) sank the Greek sailing vessel VOL 233 / Agii Apostoli with gunfire south of Milos, Greece.

(All times are zone -2)
1700 hours - Sighted a medium seized caique leaving Milos. Set course to intercept.

1920 hours - Surfaced in position 36°42'N, 24°18'E and sank the caique with 9 rounds of 3". Starting range was 3500 yards. The caique was estimated to be of about 40 tons and was heavily laden with oil drums.

1940 hours - Set course for the Suda Bay area. (9)

21 Aug 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) sank two sailing vessels with gunfire off Cape Spatha, Crete, Greece. The one sunk in the morning was the PI 1233 / Psarapoula. [so far (November 2019), we have been unable to indentify the second vessel.]

(All times are zone -2)
0645 hours - Sighted the mast of what seems to be a fairly large caique about 4 nautical miles to the east. Surfaced to pursue passing close of Cape Spada. Immediately on surfacing an enemy radar station was sighted on top of Cape Spada. Opened fire on it with the 3" gun. Six rounds were fired for two very near misses. It is not considered that the radar was damaged.

0653 hours - Machine gun fire was returned but very inaccurately.

0700 hours - Dived as enemy fire became more accurate. Two large splashes were seen nearby, these were thought to be coming from 4" shells. The crew of the caique, now about 4000 yards away, meanwhile had abandoned ship.

0715 hours - The crew of the caique had boarded their vessel again and had started the engine.

0725 hours - Surfaced to induce the crew of the caique to abandon ship again which they promptly did.

0727 hours - Dived as the large gun had opened fire on us again.

0738 hours - Surfaced again 200 yards from the caique and rammed her amidships. Then dived again with the caique still on our bow. Position was 35°39'N, 23°50'E.

0750 hours - Did not sight the caique again, she must have gone down. Retired to the north.

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

1600 hours - Surfaced a sank a northbound caique of about 20 tons with three rounds of 3" of which two hit. The crew abandoned ship in their dinghy. Position was 35°52'N, 23°37'E. (9)

28 Aug 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) ended her 3rd war patrol (2nd in the Mediterranean) at Malta. (9)

3 Sep 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) is undocked. (11)

6 Sep 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) departed Malta for her 4th war patrol (3rd in the Mediterranean). She was ordered to patrol in the northern Aegean.

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

(9)

12 Sep 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) fires three torpedoes against ' what is identified as ' an auxiliary patrol vessel north-west of Psathoura Island, Greece. The torpedoes missed their target.

[so far (November 2019), we have been unable to indentify this vessel.]

(All times are zone -2)
1025 hours - Sighted the mast and funnel of a ship making a lot of smoke. Altered course and closed at speed.

1100 hours - Identified the enemy as a trawler type UJ boat. Enemy course 050°, speed 8 knots.

1109 hours - In position 39°35'N, 24°02'E fired three torpedoes from 1800 yards. No hits were obtained. Went deep (270 feet) on firing and retired to the north-west.

1112 hours - The enemy was in contact on Asdics.

1117 hours - A pattern of five depth charges was dropped but not very close.

1132 hours - The enemy was still in contact but Asdic transmissions then stopped. Also no more H.E. could be picked up.

1134 hours - One depth charge exploded quite close. Some minor damage was sustained.

1137 hours - H.E. started up again as did Asdic transmissions. The enemy was in contact almost immediately.

1148 hours - Again the ememy stopped transmitting and no more H.E. could be heard.

1151 hours - Again a depth charge was dropped quite close but a bit further off then the one dropped at 1134 hours. No damage was sustained.

1155 hours - H.E. started again but soon faded out to the south-west.

1230 hours - Returned to periscope depth. Nothing in sight. (9)

13 Sep 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) fires three torpedoes against the German auxiliary net layer Piraeus (672 GRT, built 1905, former French Ville de Toulon) north of the Skiathos Channel, Greece. All torpedoes fired missed their target.

(All times are zone -2)
0810 hours - Sighted mast and funnel of a ship bearing 125°, range 200 yards. The contact's course was 340°. Altered course to close at speed.

0845 hours - The vessel was escorted by a flying boat. No other surface ships were present. It was thought to be a KT ship. Enemy course was now estimated as 005°.

0854 hours - In position 39°26'N, 23°22'E. fired three torpedoes from 5200 yards.

0858 hours - Heard a torpedo explosion followed 10 seconds later by a muffled explosion. At that time Virtue was at 150 feet due to the flying boat being nearby.

0904 hours - Heard four explosions, these were possibly aircraft bombs or depth charges. They were not very close.

0920 hours - Came to periscope depth. Immediately saw an UJ-boat at a range of 1500 yards. She was belching black smoke and was coming directly towards. Had no time too look for the target and went deep and took violent avoiding action.

0923 hours - The UJ-boat passed close down the port side but was not transmitting on Asdics. No depth charges were dropped.

0950 hours - Returned to periscope depth. Saw the mast and funnel of the UJ-boat to the northward, apparently stopped. Nothing else was in sight except the flying boat which was patrolling the area.

1000 hours - Went deep and retired to the east having expended all six torpedoes. (9)

15 Sep 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) caught a mine float on her starboard screw. It could not be cleared. Course was set for Casteloriso. (9)

17 Sep 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC, RN) arrived at Casteloriso to clear the mine float. She was escorted in by ML 584 (T/Lt. J.V. Braine, RNVR). After clearing the mine float Virtue departed Casteloriso for Malta later the same day. (9)

21 Sep 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) ended her 4th war patrol (3rd in the Mediterranean) at Malta. (9)

30 Sep 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) is docked in No.1 dock at Malta. (12)

4 Oct 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) departed Malta for her 5th war patrol (4th in the Mediterranean). She was ordered to patrol in the Aegean.

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

(9)

9 Oct 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) sank the Greek sailing vessel PI 391 / Aghios Matthaios (35 GRT) with gunfire west of Cape Stavros, Crete in position 35°25'N, 24°57'E.

(All times are zone -1)
1100 hours - Sighted a two masted schooner in Candia Bay, coastcrawling to the west.

1200 hours - Surfaced to engage the schooner with the 3" gun. But first commenced to overtake from astern.

1210 hours - The crew was seen to abandon ship in their dinghy.

1215 hours - Opened fire with the 3" gun from 3000 yards. The second round fired hit the target.

1220 hours - The caique sank in position 35°25.5'N, 24°57'E after four hits out of seven rounds fired.

1230 hours - Took the captain of the caique on board for interrogation. Then returned to patrol the north approaches to Candia. (9)

10 Oct 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) sank the Greek sailing vessel VOL 182 / Agia Anna (50 GRT) with gunfire in position 35°32'N, 25°03.5'E and later the Greek sailing vessel PI 942 / Sophia (150 GRT), also with gunfire, in position 35°31'N, 25°12'E

(All times are zone -1)
0615 hours - Sighted a caique leaving Candia Bay close to the west shore.

0710 hours - Surfaced.

0712 hours - Engaged the caique with the 3" gun from a starting range of 4200 yards.

0715 hours - The crew of the caique was seen to abondon ship in their dinghy. Fired twelve rounds for five hits.

0725 hours - Boarded the caique and took off the papers, which proved her to be German controlled. The caique was empty and was making for Santorin.

0735 hours - Stood off to 200 yards and then sank the caique with four more rounds of 3" in position 35°32'N, 25°03.5'E.

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

0807 hours - Sighted a large caique leaving Candia Bay close to Standia Island. Dived.

0930 hours - Surfaced and proceeded to overhaul en then engage the caique with the 3" gun.

0950 hours - Opened fire from a range of 6000 yards. The crew of the caique immediately started to abandon ship in their dinghy.

1000 hours - After expending 20 rounds the caique sank in position 35°31'N, 25°12'E. (9)

11 Oct 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) sank a water carrier and two smaller vessels with gunfire off Cape Dhia, Crete, Greece.

[so far (November 2019), we have been unable to indentify these vessels.]

(All times are zone -1)
1253 hours - Surfaced and closed the coast to engage a small merchant vessel with the 3" gun.

1258 hours - Opened fire on a this ship which was at anchor. Range was 3500 yards. Position was approximately 35°24.2'N, 25°02'E.

1310 hours - Range to the target was now 500 yards. Shifted target to a 40 tons caique which was also at anchor.

1320 hours - Both the merchant vessel and the caique sank. Then shifted fire to a 20 tons launch which had been secured to the landside of the merchant vessel and obtained two hits on the waterline. In all 53 rounds were expended.

1325 hours - Set course to clear the bay. (9)

16 Oct 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) made a short stop a Khios where she landed her full outfit of torpedoes. She departed Khios for Malta later the same day. (9)

21 Oct 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) ended her 5th war patrol (4th in the Mediterranean) at Malta. (9)

27 Oct 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) conducted trials off Malta. (11)

15 Nov 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) is docked in No.3 dock at Malta. (13)

17 Nov 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) is undocked. (13)

20 Nov 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC, RN) and HMS Vivid (Lt. J.C. Varley, RN) both departed Malta for Port Said.

For the daily positions of HMS Virtue and HMS Vivid during the passage from Malta to Bombay see the map below.

(13)

24 Nov 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC, RN) and HMS Vivid (Lt. J.C. Varley, RN) both arrived at Port Said. (13)

26 Nov 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC, RN) and HMS Vivid (Lt. J.C. Varley, RN) both departed Port Said for Aden. (13)

1 Dec 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC, RN) and HMS Vivid (Lt. J.C. Varley, RN) both arrived at Aden. (14)

3 Dec 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC, RN) and HMS Vivid (Lt. J.C. Varley, RN) both departed Aden for Bombay. (14)

12 Dec 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC, RN) and HMS Vivid. (Lt. J.C. Varley, RN) both arrived at Bombay from where both were to participate in A/S exercises. (14)

27 Dec 1944
After repairs to her port generator, HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC, RN), conducted A/S exercises off Bombay with HMIS Dipavati (T/Lt. A.J.C. Moore, RINR). (14)

28 Dec 1944
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC, RN), conducted A/S exercises off Bombay with HMS Meadowsweet (T/Lt. W.E. Saunders, RNVR) and HMIS Dipavati (T/Lt. A.J.C. Moore, RINR). (14)

15 Jan 1945
After more repairs to her port generator, HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC, RN), shifted from Bombay to Varsova. She was escorted by HMIS Ramdas (T/Lt. H.D. Baker, RINR). (15)

16 Jan 1945
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Varsova with HMIS Ramdas (T/Lt. H.D. Baker, RINR). These however soon had to be abandoned due to defects in HMIS Ramdas. (15)

17 Jan 1945
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Varsova with HMIS Ramdas (T/Lt. H.D. Baker, RINR). (15)

18 Jan 1945
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Varsova with HMIS Ramdas (T/Lt. H.D. Baker, RINR). (15)

19 Jan 1945
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Varsova with HMIS Ramdas (T/Lt. H.D. Baker, RINR). (15)

22 Jan 1945
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Varsova with HMIS Ramdas (T/Lt. H.D. Baker, RINR). (15)

23 Jan 1945
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Varsova with HMIS Ramdas (T/Lt. H.D. Baker, RINR). (15)

24 Jan 1945
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Varsova with HMIS Ramdas (T/Lt. H.D. Baker, RINR). (15)

25 Jan 1945
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Varsova with HMIS Ramdas (T/Lt. H.D. Baker, RINR). (15)

26 Jan 1945
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Varsova with HMIS Ramdas (T/Lt. H.D. Baker, RINR). (15)

29 Jan 1945
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Varsova with HMIS Ramdas (T/Lt. H.D. Baker, RINR). (15)

30 Jan 1945
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Varsova with HMIS Ramdas (T/Lt. H.D. Baker, RINR). (15)

31 Jan 1945
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Varsova with HMIS Ramdas (T/Lt. H.D. Baker, RINR). (15)

1 Feb 1945
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Varsova with HMIS Ramdas (T/Lt. H.D. Baker, RINR). (16)

2 Feb 1945
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Varsova with HMIS Cauvery (A/Cdr. F.F.W. Harvey, RIN). (16)

3 Feb 1945
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Varsova with HMIS Cauvery (A/Cdr. F.F.W. Harvey, RIN). (16)

5 Feb 1945
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Varsova with HMIS Ramdas (T/Lt. H.D. Baker, RINR). (16)

6 Feb 1945
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Varsova with HMIS Ramdas (T/Lt. H.D. Baker, RINR). (16)

7 Feb 1945
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Varsova with HMIS Ramdas (T/Lt. H.D. Baker, RINR). (16)

8 Feb 1945
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Varsova with HMIS Ramdas (T/Lt. H.D. Baker, RINR). (16)

9 Feb 1945
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Varsova with aircraft. Upon completion of these exercises she proceeded to Bombay. (16)

17 Feb 1945
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC, RN) departed Bombay for Colombo.

For the daily positions of HMS Virtue during the passage from Bombay to Sydney see the map below.

(16)

22 Feb 1945
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC, RN) arrived at Colombo. (16)

1 Mar 1945
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC, RN) departed Colombo for Fremantle, Australia. (17)

16 Mar 1945
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC, RN) arrived at Fremantle. She was immediately put on the slipway. (17)

17 Mar 1945
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC, RN) is put back in the water. (17)

27 Mar 1945
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC, RN) departed Fremantle for Melbourne (17)

5 Apr 1945
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC, RN) arrived at Melbourne. (18)

13 Apr 1945
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC, RN) departed Melbourne for Sydney. She was escorted by HMAS Yandra (T/A/Lt.Cdr. A.S. Codling, RANR(S)). (18)

16 Apr 1945
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC, RN) arrived at Sydney. (18)

22 Apr 1945
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC, RN) conducted attack exercises off Sydney during which HMS Newcastle (Cdr. S.H. Pinchin, DSC, RN) served as the target. (18)

23 Apr 1945
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC, RN) participated in A/S exercises off Sydney. (18)

24 Apr 1945
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC, RN) participated in A/S exercises off Sydney. (18)

29 Apr 1945
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC, RN) participated in A/S exercises off Sydney. (18)

2 May 1945
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC, RN) participated in A/S exercises off Sydney. (19)

3 May 1945
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC, RN) participated in A/S exercises off Sydney. (19)

4 May 1945
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC, RN) participated in A/S exercises off Sydney. (19)

6 May 1945
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Sydney with (at least) HMS Quadrant (Lt.Cdr. P.C. Hopkins, RN). (19)

11 May 1945
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC, RN) participated in A/S exercises off Sydney. (19)

19 May 1945
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC, RN) departed Sydney for Brisbane. She was escorted by HMAS Limosa (Lt.Cdr. L.C. Connelly, RANVR) and HMAS Tringa (Lt. J.S. Parsons, RANVR).

For the daily positions of HMS Virtue during the passage from Sydney to Manus see the map below.

(19)

20 May 1945
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC, RN) took HMAS Tringa (Lt. J.S. Parsons, RANVR) in tow after this ship had developed engine trouble. They then made for Newcastle but the tow parted several times and Tringa was left anchored off the coast. The towline once fouled Virtue's starboad propellor. (19)

22 May 1945
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC, RN) departed Newcastle to continue her passage to Brisbane. She was escorted by HMAS Limosa (Lt.Cdr. L.C. Connelly, RANVR). (19)

25 May 1945
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC, RN) arrived at Brisbane where she was immediately docked for repairs to her starboard propellor. (19)

26 May 1945
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC, RN) is undocked. She immediately departed Brisbane for Manus. She was escorted by HMAS Fremantle (T/Lt. A.N. Boulton, RANR(S)). (19)

3 Jun 1945
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) arrived at Manus. (20)

8 Jun 1945
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Manus with (at least) HMS Terpsichore (Cdr. R.T. White, DSO and 2 Bars, RN) and HMS Tenacious (Lt.Cdr. D.F. Townsend, RN). (20)

9 Jun 1945
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Manus with (at least) HMAS Gawler (Lt.Cdr. J.H.P. Dixon, RANR(S)). (20)

18 Jun 1945
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Manus with (at least) HMAS Gascoyne (Lt. E.J. Peel, RAN). (20)

19 Jun 1945
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Manus with (at least) HMAS Gascoyne (Lt. E.J. Peel, RAN). (20)

20 Jun 1945
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Manus with (at least) HMAS Gascoyne (Lt. E.J. Peel, RAN). (20)

25 Jun 1945
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Manus with (at least) HMS Troubridge (Capt. G.F. Burghard, RN). (20)

28 Jun 1945
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Manus with (at least) HMS Tenacious (Lt.Cdr. D.F. Townsend, RN). (20)

30 Jun 1945
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC, RN) departed Manus for Sydney. She was escorted by HMAS Toowoomba (Lt. H.F. Goodwin, RANR).

For the daily positions of HMS Virtue during the passage from Manus to Sydney see the map below.

(20)

13 Jul 1945
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC. RN) arrived at Sydney. (21)

10 Aug 1945
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Sydney with (at least) HMAS Wollongong (T/Lt. J. Hare, RANR(S)). (22)

11 Aug 1945
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Sydney with (at least) HMS Tuscan (Lt.Cdr. P.B.N. Lewis, DSC, RN). (22)

12 Aug 1945
HMS Virtue (Lt. R.D. Cairns, DSC, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Sydney with (at least) HMS Swiftsure (Capt. P.V. McLaughlin, RN) and HMS Kempenfelt (Capt. E.G. McGregor, DSO, RN). (22)

28 Aug 1945
HMS Virtue (Lt. I.G. Raikes, DSC, RN) conducted exercises off Sydney. (22)

31 Aug 1945
HMS Virtue (Lt. I.G. Raikes, DSC, RN) shifted from Sydney to Newcastle.

[HMS Virtue remained in Australian waters until early 1946.] (22)

Sources

  1. ADM 173/19006
  2. ADM 173/19400
  3. ADM 173/19401
  4. ADM 173/19402
  5. ADM 199/1816 + ADM 173/19402
  6. ADM 199/1385
  7. ADM 199/2574
  8. ADM 173/19403
  9. ADM 199/1816
  10. ADM 173/19404
  11. ADM 173/19406
  12. ADM 173/19405
  13. ADM 173/19407
  14. ADM 173/19408
  15. ADM 173/20286
  16. ADM 173/20287
  17. ADM 173/20288
  18. ADM 173/20289
  19. ADM 173/20290
  20. ADM 173/20291
  21. ADM 173/20292
  22. ADM 173/20293

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


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