Allied Warships

HMS Ullswater (FY 252)

ASW Whaler of the Lake class

NavyThe Royal Navy
TypeASW Whaler
ClassLake 
PennantFY 252 
Built bySmith's Dock Co., Ltd. (South Bank-on-Tees, U.K.) 
Ordered 
Laid down6 Jul 1939 
Launched31 Aug 1939 
Commissioned15 Nov 1939 
Lost19 Nov 1942 
History

HMS Ullswater (T/Lt. Neil Black Cameron Ross, RNR) was torpedoed and sunk by a German motor torpedo boat in the English Channel on 19 November 1942.The Commanding officer was killed in the loss.

 
Former nameKos XXIX

Commands listed for HMS Ullswater (FY 252)

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CommanderFromTo
1Skr. Charles Raymond Blowers, RNR8 Nov 19391 Jan 1940
2S.Lt. Douglas Riddell Stavert, RN1 Jan 194017 Apr 1940
3Lt. Oliver Russell Moore, RN17 Apr 194023 Oct 1940
4T/Lt. Neil Black Cameron Ross, RNR23 Oct 194019 Nov 1942 (+)

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Notable events involving Ullswater include:


23 May 1940
HMS Truant (Lt.Cdr. H.A.V. Haggard, RN) fires two torpedoes against the British merchant Alster (8514 GRT, built 1928) off the Breidsundet, Norway in position 71°03'N, 24°26'E. Alster was under escort of the British anti-submarine trawler HMS Ullswater (Lt. O.R. Moore, RN).

The German merchant Alster was captured in the Vestfjord, north of Bodo, Norway on 10 April 1940 by the British destroyer HMS Icarus (Cdr. C.D. Maud, DSC, RN). Lt.Cdr. Haggard was unaware of this but fortunately both torpedoes missed their target.

(All times are zone 0)
0910 hours - In position 71°12'N, 26°50'E sighted smoke to the North and moving West.

0930 hours - Sighted a merchant ship, four masts and one funnel visible. She was steering about 270°. Several puffs of smoke were sometimes seen near the merchant ship. These were most likely from an escort.

1010 hours - Sent a report of this sighting. Experienced great difficulty in getting this signal through.

1120 hours - Receipt of signal was acknowledged by Tromso. The ship was thought to be enemy.

1300 hours - The enemy altered course to port and appeared to be making for the Porsanger Fjord steering an erratic course.

Meanwhile Lt.Cdr. Haggard was informed by one of his officers that he heard in Troms? that the German ship Alster was in British hands and in this vicinity. Various ratings in the crew had also heard this. Lt.Cdr. Haggard decided that he would only fire torpedoes if he was unable to identify the escort as friendly, considering it would be more important to prevent an enemy landing then to spare a British merchant ship.

1350 hours - Enemy course remained to be erratic. It was therefore impossible to be sure where she was making for. Sighted the escort but was unable to identify her. She was a small ship and appeared to be camouflaged.

1400 hours - Entered Rolvsoy Sund keeping to the West. The enemy entered on the Eastern side. Range was approximately 12000 yards. The escort could still not be identified.

1415 hours - Dived.

1429 hours - Saw sharp sloping bows and high bow wave of escort. Lt.Cdr. Haggard decided it was neither British nor Norwegian.

1430 hours - Fired 2 torpedoes from 6000 yards.

1439 hours - Heard 2 distant explosions.

1500 hours - Saw the escort bows on, range 1000 yards. She was hunting. Went to 80 feet.

1715 hours - Sounds of the escort vessel getting faint.

1729 hours - Surfaced. (1)

Sources

  1. ADM 199/1861

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


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