HDML Boats 1351 to 1400

HDML 1351

Ackerman, Azusa, California, USA 3/44

Known Crew

  • TLt H G Duffell-Hintemann RNZNVR TLt 29/10/43 HDML 1351 15/3/44 HMS Philomel

Post War History

  • 1947 Sold
  • 1951 Aotearoa – A ferry at Tauranga
  • 1965 Pakatoa – A ferry in Northland, New Zealand

HDML1351

HDML 1352

Freeport Shipyard, Long Island, USA 12/5/44

Known Crew

  • Lt E J Mackenzie RANR Commanding Officer HDML 1352 12/5/44
  • SLt Colin J Nevill RANR SLt 15/8/43 First Lieutenant HDML 1352 6/44

Wartime Activities

  • Royal Australian Navy
  • Based on Freemantle

Post War History

  • 1949 Sold

HDML 1353

Freeport Shipyard, Long Island, USA 18/10/44

Known Crew

  • Lt G F Stooke RANVR Lt 4/8/42 Commanding Officer HDML 1353 6/44
  • Lt I F Champion RANVR Lt 26/2/42 HMAS Brisbane (Depot) HDML 1353 10/44
  • Lt R L Carne RANVR Lt 28/11/42 ML 801 5/5/43 HMS Challenger (Survey Ship) HDML 1353 2/45
  • SLt C J Gillespie RANR ML 818 SLt 28/10/43 First Lieutenant HDML 1353 7/44 First Lieutenant HDML 1359 12/44 HDML 1326
  • TASLt N McL Johnston RANR(S) 6/45
  • TASLt D M Norton RANR TASLt 1/10/43 HDML 1353 10/44

Wartime Activities

  • Royal Australian Navy
  • 1944 Survey work in the Torres Sea

Post War History

  • 1949 Sold

HDML 1354

Freeport Shipyard, Long Island, USA 11/12/44

Known Crew

  • Lt John Lisle Honey RANVR TSLt HMS Hornet for small craft 5/6/42 TLt 11/9/42 Commanding Officer ML 114 10/11/42 HDML 1354 HMAS Rushcutter. Died 15/11/1945, aged 28. Cause unknown. Son of Lionel Richard and Roma Honey, of Bunbury, Western Australia. Buried in Rabaul (Bita Paka) War Cemetery
  • Lt James Henry White RANVR Lt 30/7/42 Commanding Officer HDML 1372 21/7/43 For the bombardment of the Gothic Line in the Adriatic in September 1944 DSC HDML 1354 5/45 HMAS Rushcutter
  • SLt J W Lindsay RANR Commanding Officer HDML 1354 11/12/44 SLt 26/3/45
  • SLt F R Morgan RANR ASLt ML 431 3/5/43 SLt 19/10/43 ML 428 2/4/44 HDML 1354 11/12/44
  • MtrMch L G McSkimming HDML 1354
    J Cape (Coxswain) HDML 1354
    D Gibbs HDML 1354
    E Robinson HDML 1354
    William Ashby HDML 1354
    D E Edwards HDML 1354
    A W Goddard HDML 1354
    Hynds HDML 1354
    R Heathcote HDML 1354
  • Sto R G Greenwood HDML 1354
  • Tel G G Jones HDML 1354

Wartime Activities

  • 1/12/44 Commissioned in Brisbane – Royal Australian Navy
  • 19/5/45 HDML 1341, HDML 1347, HDML 1354 and HDML 1355 departed Brisbane for New Guinea
  • 21/5/45 HDML 1341, HDML 1347, HDML 1354 and HDML 1355 visited Gladstone
  • 1/6/45 HDML 1341, HDML 1347, HDML 1354 and HDML 1355 departed Townsville for Thursday Island
  • 2/6/45 HDML 1341, HDML 1347, HDML 1354 and HDML 1355 reached Lizard Island
  • 3/6/45 HDML 1341, HDML 1347, HDML 1354 and HDML 1355 reached Stanley Island
  • 4/6/45 HDML 1341, HDML 1347, HDML 1354 and HDML 1355 reached Portland Roads
    HDML 1341, HDML 1347, HDML 1354 and HDML 1355 reached Lizard Island
  • 7/6/45 HDML 1347 and HDML 1354 refuelled at Engineers Wharf, Thursday Island. A tug passed at high speed and her bow wave sequentially raised both boats by three feet. In HDML 1347 all fenders were torn away, some guardrails smashed, the deck split open and two depth charges torn from their racks. She was held back for three days for repairs.
  • 11/6/45 HDML 1341, HDML 1347, HDML 1354 and HDML 1355 departed Thursday Island for New Guinea. At Bramble Cay, HDML 1341 and HDML 1354 escorted Karina westward. HDML 1347 and HDML headed east. 128th Flotilla, based New Guinea
  • 26/6/45 Madang
    Transported Brig R Winning, Lt E Thompson and entourage to New Ireland to formalise the Japanese surrender. Commanding Officer, two seamen and a Canadian interpreter landed and organised the meeting. Afterwards they moved to Kavieng where they were piloted in by a Japanese Lieutenant Commander
  • 9/10/45 Rabaul
  • 3/11/45 Namatanai

Post War History

  • 1949 Sold

HDML 1355

Freeport Shipyard, Long Island, USA 11/12/44

Known Crew

  • Lt J Geoffrey H Miller ML 430 Commanding Officer HDML 1355 11/12/44SLt Peter E Ailwood Mid ML 426 3/44 TASLt 17/3/44 First Lieutenant HDML 1355 11/12/44)

Wartime Activities

  • Royal Australian Navy
  • 12/44 Commissioned at Brisbane
  • 19/5/45 HDML 1341, HDML 1347, HDML 1354 and HDML 1355 departed Brisbane for New Guinea
  • 21/5/45 HDML 1341, HDML 1347, HDML 1354 and HDML 1355 visit Gladstone
  • 1/6/45 HDML 1341, HDML 1347, HDML 1354 and HDML 1355 depart Townsville for Thursday Island
  • 2/6/45 HDML 1341, HDML 1347, HDML 1354 and HDML 1355 reach Lizard Island
  • 3/6/45 HDML 1341, HDML 1347, HDML 1354 and HDML 1355 reach Stanley Island
  • 4/6/45 HDML 1341, HDML 1347, HDML 1354 and HDML 1355 reach Portland Roads
    HDML 1341, HDML 1347, HDML 1354 and HDML 1355 reach Lizard Island
  • 11/6/45 HDML 1341, HDML 1347, HDML 1354 and HDML 1355 depart Thursday Island for New Guinea. At Bramble Cay, HDML 1341 and HDML 1354 escorted Karina westward. HDML 1347 and HDML headed east.
    HDML 1347 anchored in 12 metres of water off Cocoanut Island and HDML 1355 secured alongside
  • 13/6/45 HDML 1347 and HDML 1355 sighted the Owen Stanley mountains on New Guinea. And, at 1400, they secured alongside in Port Moresby having run 248 miles from Brisbane.
    HDML 1355 departed for Madang128th Flotilla, based New Guinea,
    Bouganville and New Britain

Post War History

  • 1949 Sold

HDML 1356

Elscot, City Island, New York, USA 20/12/44

Known Crew

  • SLt G T Dyson RANR SLt 22/2/43 HDML 1074 12/3/43 Lt 10/9/44 128th Flotilla. Based in New Guinea HDML 1356 20/12/44 ML 819
  • SLt E N Littlewood RANR HDML 1343 7/44 SLt 4/11/44 128th Flotilla. Based in New Guinea HDML 1356 20/12/44

Wartime Activities

  • Royal Australian Navy
  • 128th Flotilla
  • Based in New Guinea

Post War History

  • 1949 Sold

HDML 1357

Elscot, City Island, New York, USA 4/11/44

Known Crew

  • SLt G A Bartlett RANR SLt 1/10/43 128th Flotilla Based in New Guinea HDML 1357 4/11/44 – End
  • SLt R L Opie RANVR TASLt 1/5/44 128th Flotilla Based in New Guinea HDML 1357 4/11/44 ML 820

Wartime Activities

  • Royal Australian Navy
  • 128th Flotilla
  • Based in New Guinea

Post War History

  • 1949 Sold

HDML 1358

Elscot, City Island, New York, USA 21/10/44

Known Crew

  • Lt N K Swarbrick RANVR TSLt HMS Attack (Portland) for small craft 27/10/42 TLt 3/7/43 HMS Asbury 128th Flotilla Based in New Guinea Commanding Officer HDML 1358 7/44 HMAS Cerberus (RAN base & training establishment, Flinders Naval Depot, Williamstown, Victoria
  • SLt L D Jewis RANR First Lieutenant HDML 1358 6/44
  • SLt K S T Egan RANR SLt 2/1/44 First Lieutenant HDML 1326 7/44 128th Flotilla Based in New Guinea HDML 1358 10/44
  • AB Ian Roder 128th Flotilla Based in New Guinea HDML 1358

Wartime Activities

  • Royal Australian Navy
  • 21/10/44 Commissioned at HMAS Rushcutter
  • 128th Flotilla
  • Based in New Guinea
  • Patrols of Humbolt Bay, Hollandia

Post War History

  • 1949 Sold

HDML 1359

Elscot, City Island, New York, USA 22/9/44

Known Crew

  • Lt Alan H G Hard RANR SLt First Lieutenant ML 424 29/12/42 Lt 13/4/44 HDML 1359 20/10/44
  • Lt Eric M Sodersteen RANVR Lt 9/5/42 HDML 1326 31/12/43 HMAS Moreton (Brisbane) HDML 1359 7/44 Commanding Officer ML 823 10/44
  • SLt Colin J Gillespie RANR ML 818 SLt 28/10/43 First Lieutenant HDML 1353 7/44 First Lieutenant HDML 1359 22/9/44 HDML 1326
    William Trevelyan (Coxswain)
  • Tel John Anderson
  • Tel Jack Glaves HDML 1359

Wartime Activities

  • Royal Australian Navy
  • 9/44 Commissioned in Sydney
    Far Eastern Liaison Office
  • 23/10/44 Departed Sydney repairing at Crofts Harbour before reaching Brisbane. Two folboats were embarked and the crew spent ten days at the commando training school at Fraser Island
    Townsville, Cairns, Thursday Island, Milne Bay, Alexishafen (Where Colin Gillespie co Colin Gillespientracted Dengue) and Hollandia for docking to repair damaged shaft and propellor
  • 12/4/45 Morotai as part of ‘J’ Mission patrolling Japanese held territory
  • 27/4/45 Sayafi, with an embarked army patrol
  • 28/4/45 Gebe Island and refuelled from drums floated out from the shore.
    Kofiau, Ebo Island, Fagita
    Obi Island where three Japanese Supporters were captured. Four suspected collaborators were captured on the following day. Three prisoners were taken at Sendadgi.
    Djoronga Island, Tanong Libolo, Adoea, Soemoe and Sayafi. Completed mission on 30/5/45
  • 12-6/7/44 Towed to Balikpapan by LST 935 in rough weather. Damage to dinghy and a machine gun and water barrels lost overboard. Steering jammed on fourth night and prepared for abandonment before the problem was fixed.
  • 22/7/44 Balikpapan for ‘Y’ Mission in SE Borneo
  • 8/45 Surrender of South Borneo
  • 8/9/45 Contacted a Japanese ship off Sungei Barito and embarked Capt Gotto (IJN), Major Hirumata and an interpreter. Landed in Balikpapan on 10/9/45
    Provided navigation and escort for six LCTs and twelve LCMs landing troops up the Mahakan River at Louise and Sanga Sanga
  • 13/9/45 With HMAS Inverell and six LCTs to Bandjermasin then on to Sungei Barito
  • 18/9/45 Official Japanese surrender at Bandjermasin and ML 1359 became Port Director
  • 23-5/9/45 To Kumai with an army patrol of 1 officer and ten men where they took 186 prisoners.
    Towed home by a corvette with a towing chain wrapped around a propeller which had to be freed at sea.
  • 11/45 Paid off in Sidney

Post War History

  • 1949 Sold

HDML 1360

Edgar, Rye, New York, USA 25/10/43

Known Crew

  • TLt F H Holland RNVR TLt 1/10/42 Commanding Officer HDML 1360 25/10/43

Wartime Activities

  • Royal Navy (Lend Lease)

Post War History

  • Fast Despatch Boat = FDB 28
  • 3/47 Returned to United States Navy at Bombay

HDML 1361

Edgar, Rye, New York, USA 22/12/43

Known Crew

  • TLt O A J Geelmuyden RNVR HMS Asbury for HDMLs 31/3/43 TSLt 23/4/43 Commanding Officer HDML 1361 18/3/45 TLt 23/4/45

Wartime Activities

  • Royal Navy (Lend Lease)

Post War History

  • Fast Despatch Boat = FDB 29
  • 3/47 Returned to United States Navy at Bombay

HDML 1362

Edgar, Rye, New York, USA 21/11/43

Known Crew

  • TLt R F C Durbin RNVR TSLt HMS St Christopher for MLs 5/10/42 ML 528 1/11/42 TLt 3/7/43 HMS Asbury for HDMLs 9/43 Commanding Officer HDML 1362 26/11/43

Wartime Activities

  • Royal Navy (Lend Lease)

Post War History

  • Fast Despatch Boat = FDB 30
  • 3/47 Returned to United States Navy at Bombay

HDML 1363

Edgar, Rye, New York, USA 15/2/44

Known Crew

  • TSLt I G Owen RNZNVR TSLt 25/12/42 HDML1363 HMNZS Cook (depot & training establishment, Wellington, NZ)

Wartime Activities

  • Royal Navy (Lend Lease)

Post War History

  • Fast Despatch Boat = FDB 31
  • 3/47 Returned to United States Navy at Bombay

HDML 1364

Dodge, Newport News, USA 20/7/43

Wartime Activities

  • Royal Navy (Lend Lease)

Post War History

  • 3/47 Returned to United States Navy at Bombay

HDML 1365

Dodge, Newport News, USA 9/10/43

Wartime Activities

  • Royal Navy (Lend Lease)

Post War History

  • 3/47 Returned to United States Navy at Bombay

HDML 1366

Dodge, Newport News, USA 27/10/43

Wartime Activities

  • Royal Navy (Lend Lease)

Post War History

  • 3/47 Returned to United States Navy at Bombay

HDML 1367

Dodge, Newport News, USA 27/10/43

Wartime Activities

  • Royal Navy (Lend Lease)

Post War History

  • 3/47 Returned to United States Navy at Bombay

HDML 1368

R A Newman, Hamworthy, Dorset 9/6/43

HDML1368

London Gazette 10/7/45 – For operations off the coast of Arakan November 1944 to March 1945

  • MID POEng George Watson LT/KX109931
  • MID LSea John Raymond Smith LT/JX301064

Known Crew

  • TLt D McGregor RNVR TSLt 16/10/41 HMS St Christopher for MLs 29/12/41 Commanding Officer HDML 1368 3/5/43 TLt 27/12/43
  • TSLt D V Freshwater RNVR TASLt 1/9/43 First Lieutenant HDML 1368 1/11/43 TSLt 1/3/44 HMS Rockrose (Corvette)
  • POEng George Watson LT/KX109931 HDML 1368 For operations off the coast of Arakan November 1944 to March 1945 MID
  • LSea John Raymond Smith LT/JX301064 HDML 1368 For operations off the coast of Arakan November 1944 to March 1945 MID

Wartime Activities

  • 11/44-3/45 Operations off the coast of Arakan

Post War History

  • Employed on surveying duties in the Bay of Bengal
  • 2/4/46 Burma Navy

HDML1368

HDML 1369

R A Newman, Hamworthy, Dorset 25/6/43

Known Crew

  • TSLt F D Nicholson RNVR TSLt 19/2/42 18th ML Flotilla Based at HMS Mentor II, Stornoway ML 455 19/5/42 Commanding Officer HDML 1369 16/6/43 TLt 19/8/44
  • TSLt E D Brayshaw RNZNVR TSLt 28/10/44 HDML 1369 12/44 13th ML Flotilla ML 594 5/1/45
  • TASLt B E L Peek RNVR TASLt 2/7/43 HDML 1369 1/11/43 TSLt 2/1/44 Commanding Officer HDML 1374 12/44

Post War History

  • 8/45 Burma RNVR
  • 1/48 Gift to Burma
  • Burmese Navy = MGB 1369

HDML 1370

Sussex Walker, Colombo, Ceylon 6/4/45

Known Crew

  • TSLt E A Anderson RNVR Commanding Officer HDML 1370 5/3/45
  • TSLt E A Weston RNVR TSLt 6/3/44 Commanding Officer HDML 1370 5/45
  • TSLt J W Weston RNVR 23rd ML Flotilla First Lieutenant ML 291 8/43
  • TASLt 5/9/43 TSLt 6/3/44 HDML 1370

Post War History

  • 1/7/46 To France – VP72

HDML 1371

Sussex Walker, Colombo, Ceylon

  • Cancelled 1944

HDML 1372

Berthon Boat, Lymington 29/7/43

London Gazette 24/4/45 – For the bombardment of the Gothic Line in the Adriatic in September 1944

  • DSC Lt James Henry White RANVR
  • MID Sea Glyn Bromham Williams LT/JX401628

Known Crew

  • Lt James Henry White RANVR Lt 30/7/42 Commanding Officer HDML 1372 21/7/43 For the bombardment of the Gothic Line in the Adriatic in September 1944 DSC HDML 1354 5/45 HMAS Rushcutter
  • TLt K G Pickles RNVR TSLt 5/3/42 HMS Forte IV for MLs 11/5/42 ML 565 6/2/43 TLt 5/9/44 Commanding Officer HDML 1372 1/11/44 Commanding Officer ML 564 14/5/45
  • TLt J Woodhead RNVR TSLt 14/2/43 ML 468 TLt 14/2/45 Commanding Officer HDML 1372 8/5/45
  • TASLt Frank Robert Dixon RNVR TMid 23/4/43 TASLt HDML 1372 26/7/43 TSLt 2/12/43 149th ML Flotilla First Lieutenant HDML 1393 27/3/44 Operation Neptune – Invasion of Normandy Birthday Honours 1945 MID
  • TASLt R C Lock SANF(V) HDML 1372 1/4/44 TSLt 21/7/44 ML 240 30/11/44
  • Sea Glyn Bromham Williams LT/JX401628 HDML 1372 For the bombardment of the Gothic Line in the Adriatic in September 1944 MID

Wartime Activities

  • Mediterranean
  • 9/44 Bombardment of the Gothic Line in the Adriatic

Post War History

  • 1946 To France

HDML 1373

Berthon Boat, Lymington 24/8/43

London Gazette 11/12/45 – Wind up of the war in Europe

  • MID TLt Peter Anthony Stubbs RNVR

Known Crew

  • TLt Peter Anthony Stubbs RNVR TSLt 27/11/41 HMS Iron Duke for MLs 11/5/42 Commanding Officer HDML 1373 8/43 TLt 27/5/44 Wind up of the war in Europe MID Commanding Officer ML 349 26/4/45
  • TSLt F A Towl RNVR HDML 1373 8/43 TSLt 9/10/43 ML 861 10/5/44 Commanding Officer HDML 1156 9/3/45
  • TSLt P I Pare SANF(V) First Lieutenant HDML 1373 22/4/44 TSLt 19/5/44 ML 836 20/3/45
  • TSLt J G Slater RNVR TSLt 22/8/44 HMS Gregale (Malta) HDML 1373 31/3/45

Post War History

  • 1946 For disposal

HDML 1374

Moody, Swanwick Shore, Southampton 31/7/43

Known Crew

TSLt P Lance RNVR TSLt 17/7/42 ML 304 9/11/42 Commanding Officer HDML 1374 20/7/43 HMS Lanka 1944 TLt 17/1/45
TASLt N Higham RNVR First Lieutenant HDML 1374 22/11/43 TSLt 14/6/44 HMS Braganza
TSLt B E L Peek RNVR TASLt 2/7/43 HDML 1369 1/11/43 TSLt 2/1/44 Commanding Officer HDML 1374 12/44

Post War History

2/4/46 To Burma

HDML 1375

Moody, Swanwick Shore, Southampton 2/10/43

Known Crew

  • TSLt G A Swanston RNVR TSLt 6/11/42 Commanding Officer HDML 1375 6/9/43 TLt 16/9/44 Commanding Officer ML 842 26/5/45 HMS Mosquito For services in the clearance of the Aegean and the relief of Greece 1945 DSC
  • TASLt H McL S Hadfield RNVR TASLt 28/7/43 First Lieutenant HDML 1375 25/9/43 TSLt 28/1/44 ML 356 12/8/44
  • TSLt A H F Richardson RNVR HDML 1386 25/9/43 TSLt 11/12/43 ML 355 11/6/44 Commanding Officer HDML 1375 23/4/45
  • TSLt R F Hindley-Smith RNVR TSLt 19/11/44 HDML 1375 ML 463 2/6/45

Post War History

  • 13/11/45 On loan to Greece – Kastraki
  • 1961 For disposal

HDML 1376

Blackmore, Bideford, Devon 5/7/43

Known Crew

  • LtCdr C J Wood RN Commanding Officer HDML 1376 20/1/45 Assistant Surveyor 1st Class
  • TLt J P A Blue RNVR TLt 25/12/41 HMS Wildfire (Sheerness) for MLs 2/3/42 Commanding Officer HDML 1376 19/6/43 Commanding Officer HDML 1291 12/44 HMS Mayina (Colombo)
  • TASLt R A J Webb RNVR First Lieutenant HDML 1376 14/6/43 TSLt 12/9/43 Commanding Officer HDML 1086 7/2/45
  • TSLt C M Ockleford RNVR TASLt 1/9/43 HDML 1299 26/7/43 TSLt 1/3/45 HDML 1376 27/4/45
  • TSLt J E Castle RNVR TASLt 26/8/44 HDML 1376 12/44 ML 594 2/2/45 TSLt 26/2/45

Wartime Activities

  • 28/1/45 Operation Pharos
    A survey party, of ML 1376 and BYMS 2005 sailed from Colombo to Cocos (ETA 04/02/45)
    Survey of the west entrance to Cocos started by ML 1376 escorted by BYMS 2005.
  • 9/9/45 Operation Zipper – Invasion of Malaya.

Post War History

  • 7/47 Malay Government

HDML 1377

Blackmore, Bideford, Devon 4/9/43

Known Crew

  • Lt (Puggy) Pughes RNVR Commanding Officer HDML 1377
  • TSLt P P Hubbard RNVR TSLt 26/6/42 HMS Forte IV (Falmouth) for MLs 5/10/42 Commanding Officer HDML 1377 8/43 HMS Kenya (Cruiser) 1944 TLt 1/3/45
  • TLt D T Plews RNVR TSLt 3/7/42 Commanding Officer HDML 1260 20/6/43 136th ML Flotilla but normally operated alone Commanding Officer HDML 1377 11/44 TLt 3/1/45
  • TASLt C A Johnson RNVR TASLt 26/7/43 First Lieutenant HDML 1377 8/43 TSLt 26/1/44 Commanding Officer HDML 1206 3/45
  • Mid T J Gerald RNVR Mid 14/7/44 HMS Braganza HDML 1377 6/1/45 TASLt 29/3/45

Wartime Activities

  • 136th ML Flotilla but normally operated alone
  • 1/45 Towed an MFV from Vizagapatam to Akyab
  • 1-4/45 Three months operating between Akyab and Ramree including:
    Reconnaisance trips up rivers behind Myebon and Kyaukpyu
    Beach control in support of landing craft
    Recovery of downed aircrew from the coast of Burma;.tribesmen being paid silver dollars for each airman delivered safely.
    Dropping and recovering V Force agents
  • 4/45 To Vizagapatam via Calcutta for refit. Repairs not completed by the end of hostilities due to lack of spares.
  • Paid off in Trincomalee at the end of the war

Post War History

  • 1/7/46 To France = VP71

HDML 1378

Blackmore, Bideford, Devon 11/10/43

London Gazette 5/12/44 – For good service distributing instructions in the assault anchorage after the first landings in Normandy

  • MID LSea Frederick Arthur Bunn L/X10708B

Known Crew

  • TSLt Harold Willey Rowland RNVR HMS Liberia (minesweeping trawler) TSLt 26/2/42 HMS St Christopher for MLs 2/5/42 ML 269 4th ML Flotilla First Lieutenant ML 233 29/5/42 Commanding Officer HDML 1378 13/9/43 – 4/6/45 TLt 26/8/44 HMS Orlando (RN base, Greenock) Born 1920 in Sheffield district, Yorkshire
  • TLt A F Powis RNVR TSLt 18/9/42 15th ML Flotilla Based at Scapa Flow ML 188 25/1/43 Commanding Officer HDML 1489 28/12/44 HMS Philoctetes II (Freetown, Sierra Leone) TLt 14/3/45 Commanding Officer HDML 1378 4/6/45
  • TSLt J D W Pacey RNVR First Lieutenant HDML 1378 13/9/43 TSLt 28/11/43
  • LSea Frederick Arthur Bunn L/X10708B HDML 1378 For good service distributing instructions in the assault anchorage after the first landings in Normandy MID

Hong Kong Flotilla

  • Patrick Bryans (Commanding Officer)
  • Sea Stuart Robertson P/JX905047 Also served in ML 1328
  • Sea Jack Rowden P/SSX 858401

Wartime Activities

  • Operation Neptune – Invasion of Normandy
  • Distributing instructions in the assault anchorage after the first landings in Normandy

Post War History

  • Fast Despatch Boat = FDB80
  • RNVR London Division = HMS Isis
  • ML3513
  • Hong Kong Flotilla
  • 11/58 Sold Hong Kong

HDML 1379

Blackmore, Bideford, Devon 17/11/43

HDML1379

London Gazette 1/1/45 – Birthday Honours List 1945

  • MID TSLt James Buchan Stott RNVR

Known Crew

  • TSLt J R Arber RNVR TSLt 26/6/42 HMS Mantis Commanding Officer HDML 1379 25/10/43 TLt 15/7/44 HMS Cardiff
  • TSLt K S Rodwell RNVR TSLt 1/4/44 27th ML Flotilla ML 296 Commanding Officer HDML 1255 24/7/44 1/4/44 Commanding Officer HDML 1379 4/45
  • TSLt James Buchan Stott RNVR Mid 11/6/43 151st ML Flotilla Based on Portsmouth First Lieutenant HDML 1379 25/10/43 Operation Neptune – Invasion of Normandy TSLt 11/3/44 Birthday Honours List 1945 MID HMS Byrsa (Bougie, Algeria)
  • TSLt G Cowie RNVR TASLt 4/8/44 ML 912 27/11/44 First Lieutenant HDML 1379 8/12/44 – 18/2/46 TSLt 4/2/45 First Lieutenant HDML 1418 13/4/46 – 14/6/46 First Lieutenant ML 206 15/6/46 – 11/7/46 First Lieutenant ML 595 12/7/46 – 3/12/46

Wartime Activities

  • 6/44 Operation Neptune – Invasion of Normandy
    151st ML Flotilla
    Based on Portsmouth
    ML1379, ML1396, ML1403, ML1405, ML1408, ML1413, ML1417, ML1419

Post War History

  • Fast Despatch Boat = FDB81
  • 1947 Sold
  • 2000 = Abri, Based in Brambletree Wharf, Castle by Strood
  • 2018 At Castleview moorings, Rochester

HDML 1380

McGruer, Clynder, Scotland 16/9/43

Known Crew

  • TSLt W Leslie RNVR HDML 1380 3/9/43 TSLt 7/11/43 HDML 1297 1944 ML 561 9/3/45
  • Lt Donald Cameron MacDonald RNVR TSLt HMS Attack small craft 15/4/42 TLt RNVR 12/2/43 Commanding Officer HDML 1380 3/9/43. Died 01/05/1944, aged 29, when HDML1380 foundered in heavy weather after both engines were put out of action. Son of Angus and Mary Macdonald, of Glasgow; husband of Lorna Macdonald (nee Jackson), of Glasgow. M.A
  • TSLt Douglas Colin Findlay RNZNVR TASLt ML 862 3/44 HDML 1380 2/5/44 TSLt 7/7/44 ML 866 27/6/44 Wind up of the war in Europe MID
  • SLt Norman Charles Oliver Herbert RNVR TASLt 7/1/44 HDML 1380. Died 01/05/1944, aged 20, when HDML1380 foundered in heavy weather after both engines were put out of action. Son of Charles Abbott Herbert and Sarah Herbert
  • Sea Albert John Dronfield LT/JX 382618. Died 01/05/1944, aged 21, when HDML1380 foundered in heavy weather after both engines were put out of action, in the Aegean. Son of John and Ada Dronfield, of Eyam, Derbyshire
  • Sea Dennis William Galliott LT/JX 532218. Died of wounds 02/05/1944, the day after HDML 1380 foundered in the Aegean. Son of Frederick Percy and Rose Galliott, of Yeovil, Somerset
  • Sto Bernard Robinson LT/KX 139465 HDML 1380 Died of wounds 02/05/1944, the day after HDML 1380 foundered in the Aegean
  • Tel Donald Knight LT/JX 298247 HDML 1380. Died 01/05/1944, aged 21, when HDML1380 foundered in heavy weather after both engines were put out of action. Son of William Walter and Evelyn Knight, of Coventry
  • Cook William H Galloway LT/MX577821. Died 01/05/1944, aged 20, when HDML 1380 foundered in the Aegean. Son of William and Annie H. Galloway, of Dalkeith, Midlothian

Wartime Activities

  • 1/5/44 Lost in the Aegean.
  • Vessel foundered in heavy weather after both engines were put out of action.

HDML 1381

McGruer, Clynder, Scotland 11/43

HDML 1381 with Major General Wagner, Commander of German forces in the Dodecanese, and two of his staff officers coming alongside the destroyer HMS KIMBERLEY

Known Crew

  • TLt G F Young RNVR TSLt HMS Attack (Portland) for small craft 29/9/42 TLt 2/7/43 Commanding Officer HDML 1381 8/11/43

Wartime Activities

  • Mediterranean
  • 26/8/44 HDML 1381 took 5 Greek commandos to Scapanto, an island near Rhodes and dropped them off at 02.00 to return in three nights time, with the signal to pick up being P. As they pulled away they heard a loud explosion and the signal P was flashed, only for them to find when they returned that the Greeks had run into a land mine, one had been killed and the others injured. The delay meant that we would have to pass Rhodes in daylight to return to base in Turkish waters, so they went to a very small island named Syrina that is near an island named Stampalia, and covered the HDML up with camouflage nets. This had just been completed when they saw two German E boats passing. This was reported to the Commander (Bates) and he decided to make a run for it. Unfortunately the camouflage net had been left hanging over the aft end and as the skipper put her into reverse, the net wound around the propeller, and the E boats then spotted HDML 1381and opened fire it left no alternative but to surrender. All the crew were taken as P.O.W s to Leros and then to Athens ending up in Kaiser Steinbrough in Vienna. When the Germans searched HDML 1381 they found two rolls of un- developed film and had them developed, and via the German researcher they sent them to me, they show the crew sitting on the gun and eating watermelon!, some wearing Fez’s!.
  • HDML 1381 was based in Rhodes and in the last months of the war the bows were filled with concrete and then used to ram caiques (small wooden boats). One night the crew rammed a British caique (LS43) in Turkish waters and took the crew to Rhodes as prisoners. It transpired that the German officers there were desperate for accurate news of the war. They heard the German official version and the Allied broadcasts, some believed one some the other. They hoped that by interrogating their prisoners they could decide what to believe.
  • HDML 1381 did make some runs to Turkey to obtain some sheep etc as food supplies became more and more difficult and then she was used for the surrender of Rhodes.”

HDML1381 Crew

This is believed to be part of the German crew (German forage cap and forward gun)

HDML 1382

Anderson Rigden & Perkins, Whitstable 3/9/43

Known Crew

  • TLt C S Calder RNVR 150th ML Flotilla Commanding Officer HDML 1382 8/43 Operation Neptune – Invasion of Normandy Commanding Officer HDML 1486 5/11/44
  • TASLt J H Johnston RNVR HDML 1419 21/2/44 TASLt 8/6/44 First Lieutenant HDML 1382 17/6/44 ML 924 TSLt 8/12/44 ML 282 3/1/45
  • TSLt A G Coates RNVR TMid 7/5/43 TASLt 23/8/43 First Lieutenant HDML 1382 8/43 TSLt 23/2/44 151st ML Flotilla Based on Portsmouth First Lieutenant HDML 1419 17/6/44 Operation Neptune – Invasion of Normandy HMS Benbow HMS Saker

Wartime Activities

  • 6/44 Operation Neptune – Invasion of Normandy
    150th ML Flotilla
    ML1055, ML1056, ML1060, ML1081, ML1085, ML1091, ML1279, ML1382, ML1390

Post War History

  • Air Safety Launch = ASL8
  • 8/46 For disposal

HDML 1383

Anderson Rigden & Perkins, Whitstable 30/12/43

HDML1383

London Gazette 19/12/44 – For good service distributing instructions in the assault anchorage after the first landings in Normandy

  • DSC TLt Albert Thomas Victor Kingdon RNVR
  • DSM LSea Ernest Alfred Knott LT/JX224401
  • MID Tel William Thomas Charville C/JX426286
  • MID Engm Louis Caldwell Gray LT/KX160046

London Gazette 3/7/45 – Rescue of survivors of MV GOLD SHELL mined and sunk off the Belgian coast 16/4/45

  • MID TLt Albert Thomas Victor Kingdon RNVR
  • MID LSea Ernest Alfred Knott LT/JX224401
  • MID Ck Richard Cunningham LT/MX224401

Known Crew

  • TLt Albert Thomas Victor Kingdon RNVR TSLt HMS St Christopher for MLs 27/4/42 TLt 19/2/43 149th ML Flotilla HDML 1383 For good service distributing instructions in the assault anchorage after the first landings in Normandy DSC Commanding Officer HDML 1383 27/1/45 Rescue of survivors of MV GOLD SHELL mined and sunk off the Belgian coast 16/4/45 MIDTSLt A P de Nobriga RNVR TSLt 24/8/44 149th ML Flotilla First Lieutenant HDML 1383
  • TASLt D N Bromage RNVR TASLt 6/8/43 149th ML Flotilla HDML 1383 TSLt 6/2/44 20th ML Flotilla Based on Portsmouth ML 123 5/44 Operation Neptune Invasion of Normandy ML 368 21/4/45
  • Engm Louis Caldwell Gray LT/KX160046 149th ML Flotilla HDML 1383 For good service distributing instructions in the assault anchorage after the first landings in Normandy MID
  • LSea Ernest Alfred Knott LT/JX224401 149th ML Flotilla HDML 1383 For good service distributing instructions in the assault anchorage after the first landings in Normandy DSM Rescue of survivors of MV GOLD SHELL mined and sunk off the Belgian coast 16/4/45 MID
  • AB Percy John Hulcoop JX444598 Ord HMS Glendower (Pwllheli) 22/3/43 HMS Valkyrie (Douglas, Isle of Man) 12/6/43 HMS Orlando (RTF) (Greenock) 9/7/43 HMS Valkyrie 23/7/43 HMS Hornet 1/10/43 On passage 25/10/43 HMS Braganza (Bombay) 30/11/43 AB HDML 1383 1/4/44 HMS Collingwood 5/6/45 HMS Valkyrie 30/6/45 HMS Excellent 18/8/45 HMS Ramillies 20/9/45 –
  • Tel William Thomas Charville C/JX426286 149th ML Flotilla HDML 1383 For good service distributing instructions in the assault anchorage after the first landings in Normandy MID
  • Ck Richard Cunningham LT/MX224401 149th ML Flotilla HDML 1383 Rescue of survivors of MV GOLD SHELL mined and sunk off the Belgian coast 16/4/45 MID

TSLt de Nobriga RNVR (First Lieutenant)

Wartime Activities

  • 149th ML Flotilla
  • 1/44 Shakedown cruise on the east coast: Hartlepool, the Tyne, Leith, Buckie and Inverness, through Caledonian Canal, Oban, on to Falmouth.
    Part of Task Force O with HDML 1387 and 11th ML Flotilla
  • 6/44 Operation Neptune Invasion of Normandy
    149th ML Flotilla
    ML1295, ML1309, ML1383, ML1387, ML1389, ML1391, ML1392, ML1393, ML1407, ML1409, ML1421. ML1422
  • 5-6/6/44 Channel Marker at Omaha Beach on D Day

From the Operational Orders for D Day…

HDML 1383 and HDML 1387 are identified as the Channel Identification Group.

They are to proceed from Portland independently in time to reach Approach Channels 3 and 4 respectively by H Hour – 13. The approaches are marked by FH 830 acoustic beacons previously laid by ML 147, ML 151 and ML 198 Operation Enthrone

HDML 1383 and HDML 1387 are to transmit 3 or 4 as appropriate at 30 second intervals on a shielded blue signal lamp through the night. By day they are to fly a large international code numeral flag. HDML 1383 and HDML 1387 are to remain on station until 2300 on D Day.

Distributing instructions in the assault anchorage after the first landings in Normandy.

  • 2/7/44 HDML 1383 and HDML 1387 at Falmouth.
    Attached to minesweeping forces clearing Dieppe and Ostend.
  • 16/4/45 MTB 476 and ML1383 rescued survivors of MV GOLD SHELL mined and sunk off the Belgian coast in position 51.22n 02.55e

Post War History

  • Fast Despatch Boat = FDB86
  • 10/46 Sold

Special Equipment Fitted for D Day

GEE System – Vessel was provided with an RF #27 unit capable of receiving special frequency (XF) transmissions from the Southern GEE Chain. Coding schedules were supplied separately at a late date. Special fine lattice charts covering the assault area were also provided sealed. They were not to be opened before receipt of code message “OPEN ONWEST/O”.

DECCA System – Vessel provided with Type QM gear. This system was not encrypted. Special fine lattice charts covering the assault area were also provided sealed. They were not to be opened before receipt of code message “OPEN ONWEST/O”.

Radio Beacon 78T – To be switched on when the beacon position was reached and transmitted on 340 degs True. These transmissions were to continue until H Hour (13 hours being the approximate battery life of the device). Type 78T transmissions could be picked up by Radar Types 286 and 291 fitted to some approaching units at 15 miles (if within the beam) or at less than 4 miles (outside the beam). Receivers were tuned to 214 Mega cycles, producing a display of a string of needle like pulses giving a code bletter at approximate one minute intervals. HDML 1387 transmitted the letter “C”.

FH-830 Acoustic Beacon – Type 134 Asdic could receive beacon transmissions. HDML 1387’s beacon was set on High Tone with a two second repetition rate

Personal memoir of Engm Louis Caldwell Gray LT/KX160046…

“I met my new commanding officer, Lieutenant B.Kingdon RNVR in London and we travelled together to the builders’ boatyard where we saw her: HDML 1383.

What a contrast with ‘HMS Memento!’

She was 72 sleek feet long with everything new and shining. She was fitted throughout in smooth Mahogany to very high standards of workmanship. It was a joy to have my own Engine Room to order as I wished. The twin Thornicroft diesels were responsive and easy to manage, and the auxiliary engine for lighting and battery charging was a sturdy single cylinder Gardiner diesel which I was to meet ten years later pumping water from the Kafue River in Africa.

For once in naval construction, thought had been given to accommodation.
The crews’ quarters were for’ard as also was the Galley, with an internal ‘companion way’ to the enclosed Wheelhouse. Behind the Wheelhouse was an open Bridge where a hatchway led down to the Engine Room, while another gave access to the ‘after quarters.’ These comprised a Cabin with its own toilet facilities shared by myself with the Coxswain; across the ‘companion way’ was a Radio Cabin and aft of that a well fitted Wardroom.

As an Escort Vessel we were quite well equipped.

The 20mm Oerlikon aft was excellent. Two racks of ‘depth charges’ looked purposeful although we never dropped any in anger. The Bridge carried twin Vickers .303 machine guns on each wing. On the ‘foredeck’ we at first had a three pounder gun, from which the shell would sometimes scream into the far distance, or cause consternation by almost dropping out of the muzzle. Once it was replaced by another Oerlikon we were more effective. In my years afloat I never fired a weapon of any sort, nor was I ever hurt by one.

The Crew was typical of the those found on most small craft with the majority being in their late ‘teens’ or early twenties plus an occasional older hand or two but almost none with any previous seagoing experience.

Our Commanding Officer known colloquially among the crew as ‘Bert,’ was a quiet self-contained man who had worked with the BBC before the war. The First Lieutenant, sub-Lieutenant de Nobriga RNVR, inevitably known as ‘Nobby.’ was fresh out of ‘university. He was young and keen for activity and new experience and we became as close to being friends as was practicable .At the end of the commission and after demobilisation, he arrived at my home in West London one day in a dashing red MG Sports Car and we renewed acquaintance. The Coxswain, Ernie Knott was a ‘street wise’ character from the ‘East End’ of London and at thirty four was the oldest man aboard. He possessed a fund of earthy aphorisms which tended to stick in the memory and a street philosophy which sometimes shocked younger crew members. I quote, ‘A standing prick has no conscience,’ which seemed appropriate for the seaman mentioned on HMS Memento.

The seamen, stokers, signallers, cook, AZDIC, signals ratings and gunners were all late ‘teens’ or early twenties. One, ‘Tich’ had the face and physique of a youthful boy but with adult tastes which gave him great success with young girls. Another seaman had been a shop assistant before joining the Navy where he proved to have a natural talent with guns. With a 20m Oerlikon he was a deadly shot and unless forcibly restrained would pick a soaring seagull out of the sky as easily as swatting a fly. He was an oddity in another way by completely disproving the saying, ‘There is no smoke without fire.’ He was a compulsive liar who told the most blatant and pointless lies for no obvious reason or advantage; all they ever earned him was punishment. One of my ‘stokers,’ a competent and practical man fresh from a Manchester mill, was engaged to a girl at home and on hearing we were to spend several days in port on one occasion, he arranged for her to visit. As he prepared to go ashore there was much loud speculation and ‘back-chat’ on the Messdeck as to how he could possibly entertain her in such a ‘dead and alive’ place. He stopped all speculation by appearing stark naked from the ‘Heads’ and displaying an astonishing endowment; it was quite remarkable.

But enough!

They came from all walks of life with their own weaknesses, strengths and moral attitudes but to the Navy they were all seamen.

In the January of ‘44 we carried out a ‘shake-down’ cruise running the full length of the East Coast, during which a series of particularly severe Winter gales drove us into the shelter of a variety of ports. We lay in Hartlepool where during a run ashore we found the biggest Dance Hall I have ever seen. On runs ashore the Crew usually went as a body, except for ‘watchkeepers,’ and almost always headed for the local dance hall in search of company.

We ran into the Tyne for shelter where I was able to contact friends not seen for years. In the Firth of Forth we were storm bound for several days and I was able to renew family ties in Edinburgh with an uncle and aunt. Discipline was always easier on small ships and by bottling’ my daily tot of navy rum I brought a gleam to my uncle’s eye when I presented the elixir. I also took opportunity to get away from the coldest East wind I had ever known and slipped across to Paisley to visit ‘Marion,’ a girl whose name, address and photograph I had found inside a tin of Dobie’s Four Square pipe tobacco. This was something frequently done by girls working in tobacco factories making up ‘duty free’ issue for naval ships. It was a harmless practice which brightened the lives of many sailors: and was illustrative of a time when all kinds of people reached out desperately for friendship and reassurance in what were very uncertain times. I had dinner with Marion’s family and paid a second visit but like all sailors eventually sailed away.

We left Leith but were soon driven to shelter in Buckie Harbour where we experienced at first hand the full, drab, tedium of a Scottish Sunday. We moved on to Inverness, and rather than face the brutal ‘tidal races’ of the Pentland Firth in winter we entered the Caledonian Canal to cross to the West Coast. At a small shop halfway through the canal I met Nescafe powdered coffee for the first time. I enjoyed the next leg of the journey for we lay in Oban for several days. Then south to Falmouth.

At first we operated largely out of Dover which after years of shelling by the big guns on the coast of Calais was a desolate place and we tended to spend our ‘shore leave’ in Folkestone: but as plans for the invasion of Normandy began to take shape we grew to know the English Channel and other channel ports very well. During the months leading up to D.Day we undertook many and varied duties, one of the most interesting being as AZDIC escort when PLUTO, the ‘Pipe Line under the Ocean’ was being laid for the purpose of providing a continuous supply of fuel to the invading forces once ashore.

Nearer the day we were fitted with specialised navigation equipment and, with additional crew aboard, sailed under cover of darkness for a point off the coast of Arromanches where we anchored, to act as a guiding beacon for the first ships of the ‘invasion fleet,’ even then leaving English channel ports. Dawn revealed the astonishing sight of serried ranks of ships heaving over the horizon and passing in wave after wave, packed to capacity with soldiers and weaponry. It revealed also seemingly endless flights of aircraft passing overhead to saturate the countryside behind the ‘beaches;’ and in full daylight we watched and listened with awe as heavy naval units with famous names hurled salvos of shells at selected targets ashore.

I have often been asked for my impressions and experiences on D.Day and during the days which followed. So often it is the trivia which stays in the mind. I was a pipe smoker and had recently broken mine. I was looking over the side one day when I saw a pipe floating past. Who had lost it and under what circumstances I do not know but after retrieving it I could not bring myself to use it.

My overwhelming impression was of the almost incredible degree of imagination and ingenuity which had been planned into the whole operation. It was evident in almost every experience. Perhaps the first sign was the impressive sight of the slow-moving arrival of the Mulberry Harbour; at first the old cargo vessels which were sunk as ‘block ships’ and then the immense concrete caissons sunk off the open beaches to provide shelter for the invasion force against the raging ‘channel gales.’ and “My word!” how they raged.

My second impression of detailed planning was the sight of ‘landing craft’ fitted out as floating Bakeries and Kitchens serving fresh bread and meals to the crews of the huge number of small craft without the time or facilities to provide for themselves. I felt that if this degree of attention could be paid to such mundane provision, it must surely be reflected across the entire operation and the war must inevitably be won.

With the invasion of Europe firmly under way we resumed our ‘dogsbody’ duties. We pulled a beached landing craft off the Arromanches beach under the cutting tongue of a fierce naval captain, ‘Red Ryder,’ who thought Bert was showing lack of drive, whereas he was really trying to preserve my engines which were never intended to serve in a ‘tugboat.’ We guided vessels between coasts. We escorted a small convoy in company with a Destroyer through a brutal gale to Cherbourg, only to find on arrival the others had been turned back by the weather, and as the senior Naval Officer was not with us the Americans refused us entry and we had to sit out the gale in the ‘outer roads’ where at times I thought the engines would leave their mountings. One night while heading for England we heard an aircraft engine overhead. The craft must have been in trouble because it carried a long tail of fire and fell into the sea. We headed for the spot but found no survivors. It became clear later we must have seen one of the first of the German V1’s, i.e. Flying Bombs.

With the invasion launched and the land action having moved well inland from the Normandy coast our duties varied again. We were attached to a Mine Clearance unit of Fleet Sweepers and after the fall of Dieppe were sent there to see if the channel was clear. I imagine our arrival and return proved something. German ‘pressure mines’ were becoming a problem in the shallow Dutch waters and one Spring morning, after a long and bleak Winter the clouds opened and the sun poured down from a deep blue sky while we acted as AZDIC escort to a flotilla of Fleet Mine Sweepers trying to find an answer to the latest bit of horror which allowed perhaps several ships to pass unscathed but the next would activate the ‘mine.’ The Sweepers were towing a complex structure which was said to exert the same pressure as a twenty thousand ton ship.

We had cleared Ostend early and were moving slowly across a smooth blue sea about three miles offshore. I happened to be on deck getting a breath of fresh air and taking a series of unofficial photographs of a passing convoy of merchant ships making perhaps ten knots towards Rotterdam. Astern of us a despatch Torpedo Boat was leaving a broad creamy wake across the blue water towards England. Suddenly we were shaken by an explosion. The first glance was towards the Fleet Sweepers. Had they found a ‘mine?’ A second explosion turned our attention seawards where the eighth merchantman in the convoy line was burning furiously. Bert, our C.O. obtained rapid permission from the Flotilla Leader to stand by the burning ship. She was quite large, about 15 000 tons carrying a mixed cargo of oil and ammunition. The explosion had caught her amidships which was a blazing inferno. The flames fanned by her continued way through the water left a trail of blazing oil astern.

As we drew near the sight was awesome. The hull plating amidships was white hot and gave an odd impression of transparency while a thin line of flame ran right along the waterline. On deck great gouts of flame and smoke carried the fire astern and a new dimension was added when ammunition began to explode. The only obvious survivors were grouped well forward in the bows. We ran to take them off only to discover two hazards with the curve of the bows forcing us up to the stem where the ship’s way threatened to push us under. We had to complete the rescue in instalments by holding position momentarily while a man or two dropped on to our deck, then sheering off in a tight circle which brought us back under the bows again. We continued until all still alive had been recovered.

The survivors were handed over to the Flotilla Leader of the Fleet Sweepers where a doctor attended to injuries preparatory to getting them ashore to hospital. The burning tanker eventually grounded on one of the sandbanks which littered those waters where it burned for two or three days before turning into scrap iron. For ourselves we earned a repaint because the port side hull and superstructure were well and truly singed; we were just thankful the wooden hull had not caught fire. Someone must have been pleased because awards of a DSC, a D.S.M. and a Mention in Despatches followed.

All campaigns have their quiet periods and during one such Bert, our C.O. must have been talking with his fellow C.O.’s in the Flotilla and made a bet that he had the best maintained Engine Room of them all. The fact is that life at sea is not all sound and fury, there are long periods when hands need to be kept busy and in my case I liked to have engines painted silver, fuel and water lines painted distinctive colours and brightwork highly polished; and emery cloth held against a rapidly spinning propeller shaft produces a shining silver shaft. All these things must have been in Bert’s mind when he issued the challenge, and when the C.O.’s made their inspection of every ship’s engine room they admitted defeat when I removed the bilge covers and exposed dry and white-enamelled bilges. Our winnings gave the crew a good run ashore.

And so it went on week after week until the war in Europe was over.
#We re-equipped for a long voyage in preparation for sailing to the Far East under our own power and to the war against Japan. Then the Americans could not resist the urge to see if it worked and dropped an ‘atom bomb’ on Japan and it did.

Suddenly it was all over leaving a legacy which still haunts us today.

It was all over and HDML 1383 became FDB 84.

We puzzled over the new designation:

Fast Despatch Boat?
Fleet Despatch Boat?
No!
For Disposal Board.

We took HDML 1383 to East India Docks in London, left her alongside the wall and went home. For years I missed her.”

HDML 1384

R A Newman, Hamworthy, Dorset 11/43

HDML 1384

Known Crew

  • TLt John Winning Watson RNVR TLt 4/6/43 Commanding Officer HDML 1384 22/11/43
  • TSLt Martin Barry Randell Preece RNVR TSLt 2/8/45 Commanding Officer HDML 1384 Commanding Officer HDML 1050 15/6/46
  • TSLt D H Hall RNVR TSLt 21/7/41 First Lieutenant HDML 1384 15/5/44 ML 556 27/5/45
  • TASLt M R Brown RNVR TASLt 1/9/43 HDML 1384 22/11/43 TSLt 1/3/44 HMS Mosquito (Alexandria)
    Richard Lee

J W Watson

Lt J W Watson RNVR

Wartime Activities

  • Mediterranean
  • Equipped as a minesweeper

Post War History

  • 8/46 For disposal at Malta

HDML 1385

R A Newman, Hamworthy, Dorset

London Gazette 14/8/45 – For services in the clearance of the Aegean and the relief of Greece

  • DSM Tel Derek Robert Edward Winter D/JX401048
  • MID Sea Harold James LT/JX287925

Known Crew

  • TSLt R C Pearson RNZNVR TSLt 22/1/42 Commanding Officer HDML 1385 31/8/43 TLt 22/7/44 ML 355
  • TSLt D G Jones RNVR TSLt 1/3/44 19th ML Flotilla Based on Dover Operation Neptune – Invasion of Normandy ML 250 Commanding Officer HDML 1385 3/45
  • TSLt J E Bates RNVR TSLt 14/8/41 HMS Hannibal (Algiers) First Lieutenant HDML 1385 16/3/44 HMS Gregale (Malta) TLt 14/2/44 ML 249 21/1/45
  • TSLt J F Clayton RNVR First Lieutenant HDML 1385 26/8/44 TSLt 19/11/44
  • TSLt R D Williams RNVR TASLt 9/6/44 HMS Black Bat (Devonport) TSLt 9/12/44 HDML 1385 3/45
  • TASLt W L T Isbister RNVR TSLt 21/11/42 HDML 1385 1/9/43 ML 859 1944
  • Tel Derek Robert Edward Winter D/JX401048 HDML 1385 For services in the clearance of the Aegean and the relief of Greece DSM
  • Sea Harold James LT/JX287925 HDML 1385 For services in the clearance of the Aegean and the relief of Greece MID
    Edward Medler HDML 1385

Wartime Activities

  • Mediterranean
  • Clearance of the Aegean and the relief of Greece (Gazette Date – 14/8/45)
  • 9/9/45 Operation Zipper – Invasion of Malaya.
  • Singapore

Post War History

  • SDML 3508
  • 23/12/50 Malay = Sri Kelantan
  • 1965 Deactivated

HDML 1386

R A Newman, Hamworthy, Dorset 9/43

London Gazette 11/12/45 – Wind up of the war in Europe

  • MID TLt Ernest Milton Stoney RNVR
  • MID LSea Charles Higgins LT/JX218243

Known Crew

  • TLt Ernest Milton Stoney RNVR Commanding Officer HDML 1386 27/9/43 TLt 23/10/43 Wind up of the war in Europe MID Commanding Office ML 232 14/3/45
  • TLt G E Crawford RNVR TSLt 21/5/42 HMS Midge (Great Yarmouth) 151st ML Flotilla Based on Portsmouth Commanding Officer HDML 1405 23/3/44 Operation Neptune – Invasion of Normandy TLt 21/11/44 Commanding Officer HDML 1386 3/45
  • TSLt A H F Richardson RNVR HDML 1386 25/9/43 TSLt 11/12/43 ML 355 11/6/44 Commanding Officer HDML 1375 23/4/45
  • TASLt F G Hutchinson SANF(V) TASLt First Lieutenant HDML 1386 20/3/44 TSLt 19/5/44 ML 386 12/4/45
  • TSLt E B J Elliott RNVR TSLt 9/12/44 HDML 1386 3/45
  • LSea Charles Higgins LT/JX218243 HDML 1386 Wind up of the war in Europe MID HDML 1158 New Years Honours 1946 DSM New Years Honours 1947 BEM

Wartime Activities

  • Aegean
  • 14/7/44 Operation Tenement – Raid on Symi
    MTB 309, ML 349, HDML 1386
    One of three boats that landed an advance party on the north west side of the Island the night before the raid
  • 9/9/45 Operation Zipper – Invasion of Malaya at Morib Beachhead.

Post War History

  • SDML 3509
  • 1949 Malay Government
  • Malayan Naval force =SDML 3509

HDML1386

HDML 1387

R A Newman, Hamworthy, Dorset 29/12/43

ML 1387 leading the Parade of Historic Craft out of Portsmouth on 5th June 2004

London Gazette 19/12/44 – For good service distributing instructions in the assault anchorage after the first landings in Normandy

  • MID TSLt Arthur Maurice Lyddiard RNVR

London Gazette 14/6/45 – Birthday Honours 1945

  • MID LSea Charles George Edwards LT/JX222800

London Gazette 11/12/45 – Wind up of the war in Europe

  • MID LSea William Victor Walpole LT/JX219689

Known Crew

  • Wartime
  • TSLt Arthur Maurice Lyddiard RNVR TASLt HDML 1140 28/5/43 TSLt 22/7/43 149th ML Flotilla Commanding Officer HDML 1387 20/12/43 For good service distributing instructions in the assault anchorage after the first landings in Normandy MID 1944 TLt 1/2/45
  • TSLt F R Peter Cox RNVR TASLt 27/8/43 149th ML Flotilla First Lieutenant HDML 1387 19/12/43 TSLt 27/2/44
  • LSea Charles George Edwards LT/JX222800 149th ML Flotilla HDML 1387 Birthday Honours 1945 MID
  • LSea William Victor Walpole LT/JX219689 149th ML Flotilla HDML 1387 Wind up of the war in Europe MID
  • AB Harold Andrew 149th ML Flotilla HDML 1387 (From Grimsby)
  • AB Kenneth Lilley 149th ML Flotilla HDML 1387 (From Nottingham)
  • AB Douglas Allan Withey 149th ML Flotilla HDML 1387 (From Liverpool)
  • AB Dolan 149th ML Flotilla HDML 1387 (Glaswegian)

Post War

  • Wartime Activities
  • 27/7/43 Laid down
  • 20/10/43 Launched
  • 29/12/43 Commissioned
    Based on HMS Hornet 6/12/43 – 6/3/44
    HDML (Foreign Service) Pool based at Poole 2/1/44 – 29/1/44
    At Portsmouth 30/1/44 – 6/2/44
    Caught in a storm off Pembrokeshire whilst escorting a convoy on her way to working up in the Clyde. Piloted into Milford Haven by the coxswain who was a local fisherman.
  • 13/2/44 At Ardrishaig
  • 20/2/44 On passage to Falmouth
    Fitting out at Falmouth 27/2/44 – 15/4/44
    149th ML Flotilla
    Based on HMS Forte 6/4/44 – 1/9/44
  • 20/4/44 On passage to Portsmouth
  • 27/4/44 Departed Portsmouth for Plymouth
    Part of Task Force O with HDML 1383 and 11th ML Flotilla
    Operation Fabius I – Practice assault by Task Force O at Slapton Sands, Devon. Operational orders indicated expected attacks by German aircraft, surface craft and submarines. Part of escort force protecting Force O during the exercise. Force consists of 9 USN Destroyers, 2 USN Destroyer Escorts, 6 RN Destroyers, 10 USN PCs, 9 Frigates, 3 Trawlers plus the following Coastal Forces vessels
    ML 118, ML 153, ML 163, ML 187, ML 189, ML 190
    ML 191, ML 194, ML 214, ML 230, ML 304, ML 907
    HDML 1387, HDML 1409
    Grey Fox, Grey Shark, Grey Seal, Grey Owl
  • 27/5/44 Departed Plymouth for Portland
  • 6/44 Operation Neptune Invasion of Normandy
    149th ML Flotilla
    ML1295, ML1309, ML1383, ML1387, ML1389, ML1391, ML1392, ML1393, ML1407, ML1409, ML1421. ML1422
  • 5-6/6/44 Channel Marker for Omaha Beach on D Day
    (Beacon position 50 05N 000 46 44W)

From the Operational Orders for D Day…

HDML 1383 and HDML 1387 are identified as the Channel Identification Group. They are to proceed from Portland independantly in time to reach Approach Channels 3 and 4 respectively by H Hour – 13. The approaches are marked by FH 830 acoustic beacons previously laid by ML 147, ML 151 and ML 198 Operation Enthrone
HDML 1383 and HDML 1387 are to transmit 3 or 4 as appropriate at 30 second intervals on a shielded blue signal lamp through the night. By day they are to fly a large international code numeral flag. HDML 1383 and HDML 1387 are to remain on station until 2300 on D Day.
Distributing instructions in the assault anchorage after the first landings in Normandy

  • 18/6/44 Transferred to Portsmouth Command
    Returned to Portsmouth for convoy escort duties.
    On completion of escorting a convoy to the blockship harbour at Courseulles (Juno Beach) in bad weather, attempted to put to sea to avoid the drifting barges and other craft but holed the Asdic dome on a rock in the western entrance. Reached Portsmouth for drydocking with both power and hand pumps being used to keep her afloat. Repaired and returned to convoy escort duties
  • 2/7/44 HDML 1383 and HDML 1387 at Falmouth.
    Based on HMS Hornet 2/9/44 – 30/11/44
    Detached duty at Granton (Edinburgh) 1/10/44 – 3/12/44
  • 3/12/44 On passage to Sheerness
    Based on HMS Wildfire (Sheerness) 1/12/44 – 31/8/45
    Acted as escort for 185th Auxilliary Minesweeping Flotilla based on the Medway.
    Escorted two water barges from Southend Pier to Ostend and then patroled to Scheveningen, Holland and on to Ijmuiden which was still occupied by German forces waiting to surrender. HDML 1387 accepts the surrender of German forces in Ijmuiden. An armed sentry, in best uniform is placed to patrol the jetty but he trips over a warp and drops the boat’s only rifle into the harbour.
    HDMl 1387 takes a party of senior officers up the North Sea Canal to Amsterdam as part of the surrender process. Negotiated a sunken blockship by sending the boat away, with AB Harry Andew embarked, to take soundings around the wreck to find a channel and was the first allied vessel to enter the city.
    Returned to Ijmuiden and then took passage to Rosyth.
  • Based on HMS Marshall Soult 1/9/45 – 29/1/46

Post War History

  • 10/45 Refitted at William Osborne’s yard at Littlehampton, Sussex
    Redesignated as a Fast Despatch Boat (FDB 76)
  • 2/46 Delivered to Cardiff University Naval Division as last act of wartime crew
  • 2/47 Transferred to Severn Division RNVR Unit
  • 8/49 Transferred to London Division RNVR Unit as HMS Thames
    Redesignated as a Seaward Defence Motor Launch (SDML 3516)
  • 11/50 Prepared for transfer to Iran but the transfer was delayed.
  • 4/52 Temporarily allocated to the Hydrographic Department and attached to the Survey Training Unit at Chatham.
  • 4/53 Transfer to Iran cancelled. Allocation to the Hydrographic Department made permanent
  • 1956-57 Independent surveys of the west coast of the United Kingdom
  • 1958-60 Independent surveys of the East Coast
  • 3/59 Collided, in fog off Ramsgate, with the Dutch coaster Jan Brons (480 tons) and out of action for three months
  • 21/3/60 Completed three month refit in Chatham and transferred to Plymouth to work between Torbay and the Solway Firth
  • 1961 Named HMS Medusa A 353
  • 30/11/65 Paid off for disposal at Devonport. Fire broke out in the messdeck, caused by a carelessly discarded cigarette, and caused significant damage.
  • ML 1387 moored in Weston Mill Lake, Devonport.
  • 1968 Privately owned as Medusa and moved to Portland. In the first four years as a motor yacht, made 36 crossings of the English Channel.
  • 12/02/70 Iranian destroyer Artemiz (ex HMS Sluys) dragged her anchors during a gale in Portland Harbour and collided with Medusa. One of the destroyer’s anchors fouled Medusa’s anchor chain and in freeing it Medusa was cast loose. Medusa was within 100 feet of the rocky shore when the crew boarded her, started the engines and steered her out of trouble.
  • 1972 Restoration started. Extensive repairs to the hull were made and the superstructure was rebuilt. Medusa eventually made voyages to Amsterdam, Rotterdam and Brussels.
  • 30-31/7/77 Chartered for a military exercise. Transported SAS Reserve and Territorial Army troops to Worbarrow Bay for a night assault.
  • 9/80 Chartered by the BBC for the series ’Private Schultz’
  • 10/85 Handed over to Gosport Borough Council to become part of the proposed Coastal Forces Museum. The Gannet Society became responsible for maintenance and further restoration. Medusa was berthed on the trials pier belonging to Vosper Thornycroft.
  • 7/91 Chartered by the BBC for an episode of ‘Lovejoy’ to enact a burial at sea.
  • 1991 Vosper Thornycroft relinquished their lease on the pier and Medusa eventually found a new home in Gunwharf Creek, Portsmouth.
  • 20/10/93 On the 50th annivesary of her launch, Medusa visited her builder’s yard in Poole, which was by then owned by Dean & Dyball the construction company. Maurice Lyddiard, her wartime Commanding Officer, took the passage from Portsmouth to Poole. On arrival at Poole Bar, the boat was boarded by a civic party including the Mayor of Poole (Admiral of the port) and the mayoress. The mayor took the helm for a time. This was the first, but not the last time, that the boat flew the flag of the Admiral of the Port of Poole. The Mayor cut the 50th Anniversary cake and a Medusa crest was swapped for a Poole Dolphin.
  • 1994 (With Fantasia ex HDML 1410) Attended the D Day 50th Anniversary Commemorations. Acted as escort for HMY Britannia for passage from Netley to Portsmouth.
  • 6/6/94 Present at both Omaha and Juno Beaches where the crew held short remembrance ceremonies
  • 1995 With Gunwharf sold, Medusa moved to Number 1 Basin in Portsmouth Naval Base, moored alongside Minerva (M33), a World War One Monitor, also being restored.
  • 8/97 Became training tender to the Southampton Unit of the Maritime Volunteer Society.
  • 2003 Core list vessel in National Historic Ships Register. Operated by the Medusa Trust and based in Southampton
  • 2010 Completed a four year refit, largely sponsored by the National Lottery Heritage Fund, conducted at Hythe.

Special Equipment Fitted for D Day

GEE System – Vessel was provided with an RF #27 unit capable of receiving special frequency (XF) transmissions from the Southern GEE Chain. Coding schedules were supplied separately at a late date. Special fine lattice charts covering the assault area were also provided sealed. They were not to be opened before receipt of code message “OPEN ONWEST/O”.

DECCA System – Vessel was provided with Type QM gear. This system was not encrypted. Special fine lattice charts covering the assault area were also provided sealed. They were not to be opened before receipt of code message “OPEN ONWEST/O”.

Radio Beacon 78T – To be switched on when the beacon position was reached and transmitted on 340 degs True. These transmissions were to continue until H Hour (13 hours being the approximate battery life of the device). Type 78T transmissions could be picked up by Radar Types 286 and 291 fitted to some approaching units at 15 miles (if within the beam) or at less than 4 miles (outside the beam). Receivers were tuned to 214 Mega cycles producing a display of a string of needle like pulses giving a code letter at approximate one minute intervals. HDML 1387 transmitted the letter “D”.

Acoustic Beacons used on D Day

FH-830 Acoustic Beacon – Laid by either ML 147, ML 151 ML 198 in position 50 05N 000 46 44W during Operation Enthrone. Type 134 Asdic could receive the beacon transmissions allowing the boat to be conned into position over the beacon. HDML 1387’s beacon was set on High Tone with a four second repetition rate.

The vessel in 2010 berthed in Gosport

HDML 1388

Sittingbourne Shipbuilding Company, Kent 25/11/43

Known Crew

  • TLt Derric Armstrong Breen RNVR HMS Royal Arthur 5/40 HMS Egret (Sloop) HMS King Alfred TSLt 21/8/42 HMS St Christopher 30/11/42 First Lieutenant HDML 1157 HMS Aggressive (Newhaven) First Lieutenant RML 516 21/3/43 Coastal Forces Commanding Officer’s course at Ardrishaig Commanding Officer HDML 1388 19/11/43 – 24/12/43 Commanding Officer HDML 1391 1/44 – 4/44 First Lieutenant HMS Pict 3/4/44 – 7/45 TLt 7/12/44 Born 12/19 in Gateshead and died 23/3/2004 in Washington, Durham Published: Young men at war (Online)
  • TASLt A D Swan RNVR First Lieutenant HDML 1388 15/11/43

Wartime Activities

  • 24/12/44 Constructive Total Loss by grounding near Hartlepool

HDML 1389

Sittingbourne Shipbuilding Company, Kent 12/2/44

Imperial War Museum (Seen leaving Harwich)

Known Crew

  • TLt A T McClaren RNVR TSLt 69th ML Flotilla Based at Immingham ML 550 30/11/42 TLt 28/8/43 149th ML Flotilla Commanding Officer HDML 1389 3/44 Operation Neptune – Invasion of Normandy
  • TSLt J L Chapman RNVR 149th ML Flotilla First Lieutenant HDML 1389 3/44 TSLt 1/4/44 Operation Neptune – Invasion of Normandy

Wartime Activities

  • 6/44 Operation Neptune – Invasion of Normandy
    149th ML Flotilla
    ML1295, ML1309, ML1383, ML1387, ML1389, ML1391, ML1392, ML1393, ML1407, ML1409, ML1421. ML1422
  • 5-6/6/44 Marking a turning point for the American airborne divisions on the eve of D Day

Post War History

  • Fast Despatch Boat = FDB58
  • To Iran 1/49 and listed until 1951
  • 1/50 Reported as Constructive Total Loss by Grounding near Fort William and sold
  • 1972 Listed in Janes Fighting Ships in Iranian Navy as Tahmadou but out of service

HDML 1390

Berthon Boat, Lymington 9/43

Known Crew

  • TLt W J Dowding RNVR TSLt 7/8/41 HMS St Christopher for MLs 22/9/41 27th ML Flotilla ML 296 22/9/41 TLt 7/2/44 Commanding Officer HDML 1390 3/45
  • TSLt N R Swanson SANF(V) TSLt 23/11/41 HMS St Christopher for MLs 23/11/41 HMS Hornet for small craft 12/5/42 HMS Beehive for ML duties 2/6/42 First Lieutenant ML 110 2/6/42 Commanding Officer HDML 1390 27/9/43 TLt 18/3/44 HMS Adamant (Depot Ship) HMS Maidstone (Depot Ship)
  • TSLt K V Eyre RNVR TSLt 23/11/41 HMS Beehive for ML duties 2/6/42 First Lieutenant ML 110 2/6/42 First Lieutenant HDML 1390 27/9/43

Wartime Activities

  • 6/44 Operation Neptune – Invasion of Normandy
    150th ML Flotilla
    ML1055, ML1056, ML1060, ML1081, ML1085, ML1091, ML1279, ML1382, ML1390

Post War History

  • Fast Despatch Boat = FDB85
  • 1947 Chinese Navy

HDML 1391

Berthon Boat, Lymington 11/43

HDML 1391

ML 1391 in Ostend (John Smith Collection)

London Gazette 19/12/44 – For good service distributing instructions in the assault anchorage after the first landings in Normandy

  • MID Sea Peter Charles Easter LT/JX259242
  • MID Eng John Fogg LT/KX160138

Known Crew

  • TSLt J C Dunn RNVR TSLt 13/11/41 Commanding Officer HDML 1391 8/11/43 Commanding Officer HDML 1024 18/1/44 TLt 13/5/44 ML 492
  • TSLt J C Stirrat RNVR TSLt 18/6/43 109th ML Flotilla Based at Scapa Flow Commanding Officer HDML 1081 1/11/43 149th ML Flotilla Commanding Officer HDML 1391 3/44 Operation Neptune Invasion of Normandy Channel Marker at Gold Beach on D Day
  • TSLt R D Howell RNVR First Lieutenant HDML 1391 2/11/43 TSLt 12/2/44
  • TLt Derric Armstrong Breen RNVR HMS Royal Arthur 5/40 HMS Egret (Sloop) HMS King Alfred TSLt 21/8/42 HMS St Christopher 30/11/42 First Lieutenant HDML 1157 HMS Aggressive (Newhaven) First Lieutenant RML 516 21/3/43 Coastal Forces Commanding Officer’s course at Ardrishaig Commanding Officer HDML 1388 19/11/43 – 24/12/43 Commanding Officer HDML 1391 1/44 – 4/44 First Lieutenant HMS Pict 3/4/44 – 7/45 TLt 7/12/44 Born 12/19 in Gateshead and died 23/3/2004 in Washington, Durham Published: Young men at war (Online)
  • POEngm John Fogg LT/KX160138 149th ML Flotilla HDML 1391 For good service distributing instructions in the assault anchorage after the first landings in Normandy MID
    (Coxswain)
  • Sea Peter Charles Easter LT/JX259242 149th ML Flotilla HDML 1391 For good service distributing instructions in the assault anchorage after the first landings in Normandy MID
  • Sea John H Smith LT/KX389437
  • Sig
  • Tel
  • + 8 more

Wartime Activities

  • 6/44 Operation Neptune Invasion of Normandy
    149th ML Flotilla
    ML1295, ML1309, ML1383, ML1387, ML1389, ML1391, ML1392, ML1393, ML1407, ML1409, ML1421. ML1422
  • 5-6/6/44 Channel Marker at Gold Beach on D Day

Distributing instructions in the assault anchorage after the first landings in Normandy (Gazette Date – 19/12/44)

Post War History

  • Fast Despatch Boat = FDB72
  • ML3515
  • 11/3/59 To Nigeria

HDML 1392

Berthon Boat, Lymington 20/12/43

HDML 1392

ML 1392 at Breskens 1945 (John Smith Collection)

London Gazette 19/12/44 – For good service distributing instructions in the assault anchorage after the first landings in Normandy

  • MID LSea Maurice Quinton LT/JX272775
  • MID Engm Thomas Boyle LT/KX135807

Known Crew

  • TLt D F Merritt RNVR TSLt 12/6/42 149th ML Flotilla Commanding Officer HDML 1392 13/12/43 Operation Neptune – Invasion of Normandy TLt 24/10/44TSLt J M B Lloyd RNVR TASLt 20/8/43 TSLt 20/2/44 149th ML Flotilla First Lieutenant HDML 1392 17/3/44 Operation Neptune – Invasion of Normandy
  • LSea Maurice Quinton LT/JX272775 149th ML Flotilla HDML 1392 For good service distributing instructions in the assault anchorage after the first landings in Normandy MID
  • Engm Thomas Boyle LT/KX135807 149th ML Flotilla HDML 1392 For good service distributing instructions in the assault anchorage after the first landings in Normandy MID

Wartime Activities

  • 6/44 Operation Neptune Invasion of Normandy
    149th ML Flotilla
    ML1295, ML1309, ML1383, ML1387, ML1389, ML1391, ML1392, ML1393, ML1407, ML1409, ML1421. ML1422
  • 6/6/44 Channel Marker at Gold Beach on D Day
  • 6/3/45 Captured a German Biber Type midget submarine off Breskens in the Scheldt Estuary. Eleven Bibers had sortied that day. Four were found abandoned along the coast at North Beveland, Knocke, Domberg and Zeebrugge.
  • One was sunk by gunfire off Westkapelle on 8 March and five vanished.

Distributing instructions in the assault anchorage after the first landings in Normandy (Gazette Date – 19/12/44)

Post War History

  • 1946 Fast Despatch Boat = FDB73
  • 10/47 HM Customs & Excise = Valiant
  • 1967 Sold = Frol – Pejo
  • 1974 =Sarinda (Charter work on Crinan Canal)
  • 1980-91 Extensive conversion to luxury motor yacht
  • 11/95 Base ported at Liverpool.
  • Reduced to a hull, rebuilt with new engines and superstructure, used as a houseboat. Fitted with fin stabilisers to reduce rolling.
  • 2018 In Heswall

Midget submarine captured by HDML 1392

HDML 1392

Photograph courtesy of Brian Haseler

HDML 1393

Berthon Boat, Lymington 10/2/44

London Gazette 14/6/45 – Birthday Honours 1945

  • MID TSLt Frank Robert Dixon RNVR

London Gazette 11/12/45 – Wind up of the war in Europe

  • MID TLt Edward John King RNVR

Known Crew

  • TLt Edward John King RNVR TSLt 61st RML Flotilla Based at HMS Aggressive, Newhaven ML 518 8/2/43 TLt 6/11/43 149th ML Flotilla Commanding Officer HDML 1393 1/2/44 Operation Neptune – Invasion of Normandy Wind up of the war in Europe MIDTSLt Frank Robert Dixon RNVR TMid 23/4/43 TASLt HDML 1372 26/7/43 TSLt 2/12/43 149th ML Flotilla First Lieutenant HDML 1393 27/3/44 Operation Neptune – Invasion of Normandy Birthday Honours 1945 MID

Wartime Activities

  • 6/44 Operation Neptune – Invasion of Normandy
    149th ML Flotilla
    ML1295, ML1309, ML1383, ML1387, ML1389, ML1391, ML1392, ML1393, ML1407, ML1409, ML1421. ML1422
  • 5-6/6/44 Channel Marker at Juno Beach on D Day

Post War History

  • 1945 Survey Motor Launch = SML 6
  • 1949 SML326
  • 20/4/59 Sold

HDML 1394

McLean, Renfrew Scotland 8/43

Known Crew

  • William Alexander KerrTSLt William Alexander Kerr (pictured) RNVR TASLt 28/4/44 HMS Braganza (RN Base in Bombay) 21/8/44TSLt 28/10/44 HDML 1394 12/44 Who died of drowning on Saturday 10 March 1945 Age 19. Son of William and Agnes B. Kerr, of Northallerton, Yorkshire.
  • TSLt P Tozer RNVR TSLt 11/6/43 Commanding Officer HDML 1394 8/43
  • TASLt C C Badge RNVR TMid 16/4/43 TASLt 1/9/43 First Lieutenant HDML 1394 8/43 TSLt 1/3/44 HMS Queen Elizabeth (Battleship)
  • TSLt H C C Mossop RNVR 103rd ML Flotilla 3/43 TSLt 19/4/43 HDML 1025 HDML 1394 26/6/44

Post War History

  • 1946 Sunk at Trincomalee

HDML 1395

McLean, Renfrew Scotland 10/43

HDML 1395

Known Crew

  • TLt R W Ollis RNVR TSLt 17th MGB Flotilla Based at Great Yarmouth MGB 609 8/6/42 HMS Midge (Great Yarmouth) for minelayers 5/10/42 17th MGB Flotilla Commanding Officer MGB 610 1/3/43 TLt 2/4/43 Commanding Officer HDML 1395 6/10/43 Commanding Officer HDML 1162 10/10/44
  • TLt J H Robinson RNVR 24th ML Flotilla ML 340 19/10/42 TSLt 17/1/43 TLt 17/1/45 Commanding Officer HDML 1230 21/2/45 Commanding Officer HDML 1395 18/5/45
  • TSLt F J Ward SANF(V) TASLt 8/10/43 HMS Good Hope (Port Elizabeth) First Lieutenant HDML 1395 1/4/44 TSLt 8/4/44 ML 121 28/10/44
  • TMid P Rothwell RNVR TMid 28/5/43 HDML 1395 6/10/43 ML 462 19/5/44 TSLt 20/8/44

Post War History

  • 11/46 Sold Yacht = Dorina

HDML 1396

Robinson, Lowestoft, Norfolk 27/3/44

London Gazette 11/12/45 – Wind up of the war in Europe

  • MID LSea John Dodd LT/JX194265
  • MID Engm James Simons LT/KX112765

Known Crew

  • TLt A H Ridout RNVR TSLt 26/6/42 HMS St Christopher for MLs 28/9/42 ML 538 28/9/42 TLt 1/3/44 Commanding Officer HDML 1396 3/45
  • TSLt S J Mummery RNVR 151st ML Flotilla Based on Portsmouth Commanding Officer HDML 1396 19/3/44 TSLt 26/5/44 Operation Neptune – Invasion of Normandy
  • LSea John Dodd LT/JX194265 151st ML Flotilla Based on Portsmouth HDML 1396 Operation Neptune – Invasion of Normandy Wind up of the war in Europe MID
  • Sea John Macdonald LT/JX529704 HDML 1396 died by drowning on Saturday 16 June 1945 Age 21. Son of Donald and Mary Macdonald, of Ness. Buried in Ness (Habost) Cemetery, Isle of Lewis
  • Engm James Simons LT/KX112765 151st ML Flotilla Based on Portsmouth HDML 1396 Wind up of the war in Europe MID

Wartime Activities

  • 6/44 Operation Neptune – Invasion of Normandy
    151st ML Flotilla
    Based Portsmouth
    ML1379, ML1396, ML1403, ML1405, ML1408, ML1413, ML1417, ML1419

Post War History

  • Fast Despatch Boat = FDB82
  • 1947 Sold = Pride of the Dart
  • 2001 Based in Torquay
  • 2002 Ended service after grounding near the mouth of the River Dart

HDML 1396

HDML 1397

Robinson, Lowestoft, Norfolk 7/7/44

Known Crew

  • Lt W E A Griggs SANF(V) TSLt HMS Edinburgh Castle (Freetown, Sierra Leone) for MLs 7/10/42 27th ML Flotilla ML 302 1/12/42 Lt 21/8/43 HDML 1397
  • TSLt R H Greene RNVR HDML 1397 29/5/44 TSLt 14/11/44

Post War History

  • Fast Despatch Boat = FDB65
  • 8/10/48 Sold to Iran

HDML 1398

Ekins, Christchurch, Dorset 6/43

HDML1398

Known Crew

  • TLt S J Charlton RNVR TSLt 17/7/42 HMS Dartmouth II 7th ML Flotilla Based at Dartmouth ML 153 9/11/42 TLt 17/7/43 Commanding Officer HDML 1398 24/6/43 HMS Mosquito (Alexandria) For services in the clearance of the Aegean and the relief of Greece 1945 MID
  • TLt Dermot F Barton RNVR HMS St Christopher for MLs 26/10/42 ML 520 26/10/42 TSLt 24/1/43 HMS Beaver (RN base, Humber) TLt 10/1/45 Commanding Officer HDML 1398 3/45
  • TSLt P C Osborne RNVR TASLt ML 351 26/3/43 TSLt 4/6/43 Commanding Officer HDML 1398 30/7/44 TLt 4/6/45
  • TSLt W D J Newman RNVR First Lieutenant HDML 1398 28/6/43 TSLt 5/9/43 ML 354 11/9/44 Commanding Officer HDML 1307 23/5/45
  • TSLt R Iddon RNVR HDML 1398 5/7/44 TSLt 7/10/44
  • TSLt A W Poulton RNVR TASLt 1/9/44 HMS Aggressive (Newhaven) TSLt 1/3/45 HDML 1398 1/3/45
  • AB Ernest Ivor Holmes JX383846 Joined RN 9/42 ML 182 HDML 1398 10/45 Released 2/8/46

Wartime Activities

  • 9/9/45 Operation Zipper – Invasion of Malaya

Post War History

  • 7/47 Malay Government

HDML 1399

Ekins, Christchurch, Dorset 3/44

London Gazette 5/12/44 – For a series of actions in the Channel

  • MID TLt John Edward Jenks RNVR

London Gazette 19/12/44 – For good service distributing instructions in the assault anchorage after the first landings in Normandy

  • DSM Sea Thomas Walter Adamson LT/JX237490
  • MID Sto1 Andrew Walker Hume LT/KX527886

Rescue of casualties 22/3/45

  • BEM LSea William Cartmell LT/JX400007

Known Crew

  • TLt John Edward Jenks RNVR TLt 13/12/41 Commanding Officer HDML 1399 18/5/44 Operation Neptune – Invasion of Normandy For a series of actions in the Channel MID
  • TMid D L Gambel RNVR First Lieutenant HDML 1399 15/5/44 TASLt 29/10/44 HDML 1421 19/1/45 TSLt 29/4/45
  • TMid K A Byron RNVR TMid 30/6/44 TASLt 2/5/45 HDML 1399 19/1/45
  • LSea William Cartmell LT/JX400007 HDML 1399 Rescue of casualties 22/3/45 BEM
  • Sea Thomas Walter Adamson LT/JX237490 HDML 1399 For good service distributing instructions in the assault anchorage after the first landings in Normandy DSM
  • Sto1 Andrew Walker Hume LT/KX527886 HDML 1399 For good service distributing instructions in the assault anchorage after the first landings in Normandy MID

Wartime Activities

  • Operation Neptune – Invasion of Normandy
  • A series of actions in the Channel (Gazette Date – 5/12/44)
  • Distributed instructions in the assault anchorage after the first landings in Normandy (Gazette Date – 19/12/44)
  • 22/3/45 Rescue of casualties

Post War History

  • 2/46 Sold

HDML 1400

Ekins, Christchurch, Dorset 24/1/45

Known Crew

  • TSLt G R Goodwin SANF(V) TSLt 11/3/43 104th ML Flotilla Based at Freetown, Sierra Leone Commanding Officer HDML 1019 24/3/43 Commanding Officer HDML 1457 10/9/44 HDML 1400 30/11/44 TLt 11/3/45 Commanding Officer ML 863 6/5/45
  • TSLt M F H Pitstow RANVR 65th ML Flotilla Based at HMS Mentor II, Stornoway ML 541 5/8/43 TSLt 2/9/43 151st ML Flotilla Commanding Officer HDML 1417 16/10/44 HMS Aggressive (Newhaven) Commanding Officer HDML 1400 1/4/45

Post War History

  • Fast Despatch Boat = FDB35
  • 15/5/46 Royal Netherlands Navy = RP105 Panter
  • 1949 Rebuilt as a minesweeper = MV32
  • = Mastgat M882
  • 4/56 Diving Tender Y8129
  • 5/4/64 Sold Commercially = Sepia
  • 10/5/72 Sold to Belgium

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