Allied Warships

HMS Blanche (H 47)

Destroyer of the B class


HMS Blanche before World War Two

NavyThe Royal Navy
TypeDestroyer
ClassB 
PennantH 47 
Built byHawthorn Leslie & Co. (Hebburn-on-Tyne, U.K.) 
Ordered4 Mar 1929 
Laid down29 Jul 1929 
Launched29 May 1930 
Commissioned14 Feb 1931 
Lost13 Nov 1939 
Loss position51° 29'N, 1° 30'E
History

During the night of 12/13 November 1939 the German destroyers Karl Galster, Wilhelm Heidkamp, Hermann Kunne and Hans Ludemann lay a minefield in the South and Edinborough channels. Soon after the minefield had been laid the minelaying cruiser HMS Adventure (Capt. A.R. Halfhide, RN) ran into a mine. Temporally disabled the injured were transferred to the destroyer HMS Basilisk (Cdr. M. Richard, RN) while the destroyer HMS Blanche (Lt.Cdr. R.M. Aubrey, RN) stood by. As the force made its way towards safety HMS Blanche was mined and settled by the stern. The tug Fabia went to the destroyers assistance but as she was towed the destroyer capsized and sank in position 51º29'N, 01º30'E. HMS Blanche lost two crew killed and twelve injured.

See this website (offsite link) for a detailed account of the mining of HMS Adventure and HMS Blanche.  

Commands listed for HMS Blanche (H 47)

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CommanderFromTo
1Lt.Cdr. Robert Marriott Aubrey, RN27 Jun 193913 Nov 1939

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Notable events involving Blanche include:


25 Oct 1939
HMS H 33 (Lt.Cdr. L.J. Caldwell, RN) shifted from Dover to Sheerness. She was escorted by HMS Blanche (Lt.Cdr. R.N. Aubrey, RN).

HMS H 33 was then taken in hand for refit at the Sheerness Dockyard. (1)

13 Nov 1939
During the night of 12/13 November 1939 the German destroyers Karl Galster, Wilhelm Heidkamp, Hermann Kunne and Hans Ludemann lay a minefield in the South and Edinborough channels. Soon after the minefield had been laid the mine laying cruiser HMS Adventure (Capt. A. R. Halfhide, RN) ran into a mine. Temporally disabled the injured were transferred to the destroyer HMS Basilisk (Cdr. M. Richard, RN) while the destroyer HMS Blanche (Lt.Cdr. R.N. Aubrey, RN) stood by. As the force made its way towards safety HMS Blanche was mined and settled by the stern. The tug Fabia went to the destroyers assistance but as she was towed the destroyer capsized and sank. HMS Blanche lost two crew killed and twelve injured.

See this website (offsite link) for a detailed account of the mining of HMS Adventure and HMS Blanche.

Media links


British destroyers & frigates

Norman Friedman


Destroyers of World War Two

Whitley, M. J.

Sources

  1. ADM 173/15709

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


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