Allied Warships

HMS Scotstoun

Armed Merchant Cruiser

Caledonia as seen before the war.

NavyThe Royal Navy
TypeArmed Merchant Cruiser
Class[No specific class] 
Built byWilliam Beardmore & Co. Ltd. (Dalmuir, Scotland) 
Laid down 
Launched22 Apr 1925 
Commissioned15 Oct 1939 
Lost13 Jun 1940 
Loss position57° 00'N, 9° 57'W

On 30 August 1939 the passenger ship Caledonia of the Anchor Line (Henderson Bros) Ltd, Glasgow was requisitioned by the Admiralty and converted to an armed merchant cruiser being renamed HMS Scotstoun. Conversion was completed on 15 October 1939.

Tonnage: 17046 BRT
Armament: 8x 152mm, 2x 76mm
Speed: 15.5 knots

October 39 - June 40: Northern Patrol

At 07.16 hours on 13 June 1940, HMS Scotstoun (Capt. Sydney Keith Smyth, RN (Retired)) of the 10th Cruiser Squadron was hit in the stern by one torpedo from the German submarine U-25 about 80 nautical miles west of Barra Island, Outer Hebrides in position 57º00'N, 09º57'W . At 17.29 hours, a first coup de grâce missed, but a second hit just aft of the funnel and caused the ship to sink by the stern. Six ratings were lost.


Hit by U-boat
Sunk on 13 Jun 1940 by U-25 (Beduhn).

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

Commands listed for HMS Scotstoun

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1Capt. (retired) Sydney Keith Smyth, RN2 Sep 193913 Jun 1940

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Notable events involving Scotstoun include:

19 Oct 1939
The German tanker Biscaya (6386 GRT) is intercepted and captured in the Denmark Strait in position 66°30'N, 23°00'W by the British armed merchant cruiser HMS Scotstoun (Capt. S.K. Smyth, RN).

21 Oct 1939
The German merchant Poseidon (5864 GRT) is intercepted in the Denmark Strait by the British armed merchant cruisers HMS Transylvania (Capt. F.N. Miles, OBE, RN) and HMS Scotstoun (Capt. S.K. Smyth, RN). However before she can be captured the German crew attempted to scuttle their ship but this failed. The damaged ship was taken in tow but sank in bad weather on the 26th.

19 Nov 1939
HMS Scotstoun (Capt. S.K. Smyth, RN) captures the German merchant Eilbeck (2185 GRT) north-west of Ireland in position 58°45'N, 14°10'W.

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