Allied Warships

HMS Lagan (K 259)

Frigate of the River class

Photo from Imperial War Museum (IWM), FL-14499

NavyThe Royal Navy
PennantK 259 
Built bySmiths Dock Co., Ltd. (South Bank-on-Tees, U.K.) 
Ordered3 Jul 1941 
Laid down7 Jan 1942 
Launched28 Jul 1942 
Commissioned21 Dec 1942 
End service20 Sep 1943 

Around 0500hours on 20 September 1943, the German submarine U-270 fired a Gnat torpedo at HMS Lagan (Lt.Cdr. Albert Ayre, RNR (retired)) near convoy ON-202. The torpedo struck her in the stern. The position of the attack was 57º09'N, 27º28'W. The U-boat was then chased away by depth charges from the Canadian destroyer HMCS Gatineau and the badly damaged frigate was towed to the Mersey where she arrived on 24 September. Damage was severe and she was declared a Constructive Total Loss (CTL). Damage sustained from torpedo was 30 feet of stern from frame 115 aft missing. 30 feet of after deck from frame 100 badly damaged. Forward superstructure damaged by debris including tinned food and depth charges raining down. One officer and 28 ratings were killed or missing.

Sold to be broken up for scrap on 21 May 1946.  

Hit by U-boat
A total loss on 20 Sep 1943 by U-270 (Otto).

U-boat AttackSee our U-boat attack entry for the HMS Lagan

Commands listed for HMS Lagan (K 259)

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1Lt.Cdr. (retired) Albert Ayre, RNR24 Sep 1942late 1943

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Notable events involving Lagan include:

12 May 1943
German U-boat U-89 was sunk in the Northern Atlantic, in position 46°30'N, 25°40'W by a Swordfish aircraft (Sqdn. 811) from the British escort carrier HMS Biter (Capt. E.M.C. Abel Smith, RN), the British destroyer HMS Broadway (Lt.Cdr. E.H. Chevasse, RN) and the British frigate HMS Lagan (Lt.Cdr. A. Ayre, RNR).

13 May 1943
German U-boat U-753 was sunk in the North Atlantic, in position 48°37'N, 22°39'W, by depth charges from the Canadian corvette HMCS Drumheller (Lt. L.P. Denny, RCNR), the British frigate HMS Lagan (Lt.Cdr. A. Ayre, RNR) and depth charges from a Canadian Sunderland aircraft (RCAF Sqdn. 423/G).

30 Jun 1943
HMS H 32 (Lt. J.A.R. Troup, DSC, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Lough Foyle with HMS Rochester (Cdr. H.V. King, OBE, RN), HMS Geranium (T/Lt. A.R.J. Tilston, DSC, RNR), HMS Lagan (Lt.Cdr. A. Ayre, RNR) and HMS Primrose (T/Lt. P.E. Kitto, RNR). (1)

8 Aug 1943
HMS P 511 (Lt. R.H. Bull, DSC, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Lough Foyle together with HMS Polyanthus (T/Lt. J.G. Aitken, RNR), HMCS Drumheller (T/Lt. L.P. Denny, RCNR), HMS Lagan (Lt.Cdr. (retired) A. Ayre, RNR), HMCS Kamloops (T/Lt. D.M. Stewart, RCNR), HMCS Gatineau (Cdr. P.W. Burnett, RN), HMCS Chambly (T/A/Lt.Cdr. A.F. Pickard, RCNR), HMS Drury (Lt.Cdr. N.J. Parker, RN) and HMS Primrose (T/Lt. P.E. Kitto, RNR). (2)


  1. ADM 173/17771
  2. ADM 173/17927

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

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