Allied Warships

HMS Pelican (L 86 / U 86)

Sloop of the Egret class

NavyThe Royal Navy
TypeSloop
ClassEgret 
PennantL 86 / U 86 
Built byThornycroft (Southampton, U.K.) 
Ordered19 Mar 1937 
Laid down7 Sep 1937 
Launched12 Sep 1938 
Commissioned2 Mar 1939 
End service 
History

Scrapped 29 November 1958.

 

Commands listed for HMS Pelican (L 86 / U 86)

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CommanderFromTo
1Cdr. Lennox Albert Knox Boswell, RN20 Jan 1939Jan 1941

2Cdr. Gerald Vaughan Gladstone, RN16 Sep 1941Nov 1942
3Cdr. James Gordon Gould, RNNov 19422 Apr 1943
4Cdr. Godfrey Noel Brewer, RN2 Apr 194327 Aug 1943
5Cdr. John Stanley Dalison, DSO, RN8 Sep 1943May 1944
6Lt. Charles Edward Sheen, DSC, RNMay 1944Dec 1945

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Notable events involving Pelican include:


24 Sep 1939
HMS Thistle (Cdr. R.W. Stirling-Hamilton, RN) departed from Dover bound for Dundee. Escort is provided by HMS Beagle (Lt.Cdr. R.H. Wright, RN). Later Beagle is relieved by HMS Weston (Cdr.(Retd.) A.G. Davidson, RN). The next day Thistle is taken up in convoy FN 10 that is escorted by the above mentioned HMS Weston as well as HMS Pelican (Cdr. L.A.K Boswell, RN). (1)

15 Feb 1940
Late in the evening HMS Jackal (Cdr. T.M. Napier, RN) departed the Tyne to reinforce the escort of convoy FS 97 (Tyne-Southend) which was made up of the destroyer HMS Vivien (Lt.Cdr. W.D.G. Weir, RN) and the sloop HMS Pelican (Cdr. L.A.K. Boswell, DSO, RN). The convoy had departed the Tyne also on the 15th.

The convoy arrived at Southend on the 17th.

HMS Jackal had bee detached earlier and arrived at Immingham very late on the 16th. (2)

22 Apr 1940
The anti-aircraft sloop HMS Pelican (Cdr. L.A.K. Boswell, D.S.O., RN), while on her way to the Romsdal Fjord carrying the personnel of the Naval Base party for Molde, was crippled by a German Ju-87 (Stuka) dive bomber. She was hit aft, setting off her depth charges. Pelican was towed to Lerwick and then to Chatham for repairs that lasted until early December 1940. (3)

22 Apr 1940
HMS Jackal (Cdr. T.M. Napier, RN) is damaged by bomb spliters during an enemy air attack. Damage was minor with the most damage done to the ships main radio antenna.

Jackal departed Aandalsnes this day to escort the St. Sunniva (1368 GRT, built 1931) to Kirkwall but the was later ordered to join the damaged sloop HMS Pelican (Cdr. L.A.K. Boswell, DSO, RN).

HMS Pelican, which was en-route to Molde had been attacked and heavily damaged by German aircraft. HMS Jackal took off injured crew members and soldiers from HMS Pelican. Soldiers which had been on board HMS Pelican were taken on board the St. Sunniva which was then escorted to Molde by the destroyer HMS Somali (Capt. R.S.G. Nicholson, DSO, DSC, RN) after which she returned.

HMS Pelican was also joined by the sloop HMS Fleetwood (Cdr. A.N. Grey, RN) which took her in tow. Escort was provided by the destroyers HMS Jackal, HMS Somali and HMS Tartar (Cdr. L.P. Skipwith, RN).

HMS Pelican arrived at Lerwick at 1000/24 now being towed by the tug St. Mellons and escorted by HMS Jackal, HMS Tartar and HMS Fleetwood. HMS Somali had been detached earlier to proceed direct to Scapa Flow. (4)

11 Dec 1940
HrMs O 9 (Lt. H.A.W. Goossens, RNN) participated in A/S exercises off Tobermory with HMS Pelican (Cdr. L.A.K. Boswell, DSO, RN). (5)

12 Dec 1940
HrMs O 9 (Lt. H.A.W. Goossens, RNN) participated in A/S exercises off Tobermory with HMS Pelican (Cdr. L.A.K. Boswell, DSO, RN). (5)

13 Dec 1940
HrMs O 14 (Lt.Cdr. H. Tichelman, RNN) conducted A/S exercises off Tobermory with HMS Marguerite (Lt.Cdr. A.N. Blundell, RNR), HMS Pelican (Cdr. L.A.K. Boswell, DSO, RN) and the A/P trawler Duchesse de Brabant. (6)

16 Dec 1940
HrMs O 9 (Lt. H.A.W. Goossens, RNN) participated in A/S exercises off Tobermory with HMS Pelican (Cdr. L.A.K. Boswell, DSO, RN). (5)

27 Jan 1942
HMS Turbulent (Cdr. J.W. Linton, DSC, RN) departed from Gibraltar for Malta. She carries some much needed stores and 10 passengers (2 for Malta and 8 for Alexandria) to Malta during this passage.

Before proceeding to Malta she conducts A/S exercises with HMS Pelican (Cdr. G.V. Gladstone, RN), HMS Azalea (Lt. G.C. Geddes, RNR) and HMS Marigold (T/Lt. J. Renwick, DSO, RNR).

(As no log of HMS Turbulent is available for January 1942 it is not possible to display a map.) (7)

1 May 1942
HrMs O 9 (Lt. J.F. Drijfhout Van Hooff, RNN) participated in A/S exercises off Lough Foyle together with HMCS Rosthern (Cdr. P.B. Cross, RCNVR), USS Niblack (Lt.Cdr. E.R. Durgin, USN), HMS Lowestoft (Lt.Cdr.(Retd.) F.B. Proudfoot, RN) and HMS Pelican (Cdr. G.V. Gladstone, RN). (8)

2 May 1942
HrMs O 9 (Lt. J.F. Drijfhout Van Hooff, RNN) participated in A/S exercises off Lough Foyle together with HMS Lowestoft (Lt.Cdr.(Retd.) F.B. Proudfoot, RN), HMS Pelican (Cdr. G.V. Gladstone, RN) and HMS Quadrille (T/Lt. N.T. Chetwood, RNVR). (8)

11 Jul 1942
German U-boat U-136 was sunk in the Atlantic west of Madeira, Portugal, in position 33°30'N, 22°52'W by the Free French destroyer Leopard (Lt.Cdr. Richard), the British frigate HMS Spey (Cdr. H.G. Boys-Smith, DSO and Bar, RNR) and the British sloop HMS Pelican (Cdr. G.V. Gladstone, RN).

29 Aug 1942
HMS H 43 (Lt. J.C.Y. Roxburgh, DSC, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Lough Foyle with HMS Pelican (Cdr. G.V. Gladstone, RN), HMS Sennen (Lt.Cdr. R.S. Abram, RN), HMS Narcissus (Lt. W.G.H. Bolton, RNR), HMS Heather (T/Lt. W.L. Turner, RNR) and FFS Renoncule. (9)

30 Aug 1942
HMS H 43 (Lt. J.C.Y. Roxburgh, DSC, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Lough Foyle with HMS Pelican (Cdr. G.V. Gladstone, RN) and HMS Sennen (Lt.Cdr. R.S. Abram, RN). (9)

14 Feb 1943
HMS H 44 (Lt. I.S. McIntosh, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Lough Foyle with HMS Harvester (Cdr. A.A. Tait, DSO, RN), HMS Pelican (Cdr. J.G. Gould, RN), HMS Sennen (Lt.Cdr. F.H. Thornton, RNR), HMS Wear (Cdr. E. Wheeler, RD, RNR) and HMS Rother (Lt.Cdr. R.V.E. Case, DSC and Bar, RD, RNR). (10)

10 Mar 1943
HMS P 615 (Lt. C.W.St.C. Lambert, DSC and Bar, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Freetown with HMS Pelican (Cdr. J.G. Gould, RN), HMS Sennen (Lt.Cdr. F.H. Thornton, RNR), HMS Wear (Cdr. E. Wheeler, RD, RNR), HMS Spey (Cdr. H.G. Boys-Smith, DSO and Bar, RD, RNR) and HMS Rother (Lt.Cdr. R.V.E. Case, DSC and Bar, RD, RNR) (11)

14 Apr 1943
HMS H 33 (Lt. J.A. Spender, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Lough Foyle with HMS Wear (Cdr. E. Wheeler, RD, RNR), HMS Sunflower (A/Lt.Cdr. J. Plomer, RCNVR), HMCS Kenogami (T/Lt. J.L. Percy, RCNVR), HMS Sennen (Lt.Cdr. F.H. Thornton, DSC, RNR), HMS Pelican (Cdr. G.N. Brewer, RN) and HMS Spey (Cdr. H.G. Boys-Smith, DSO and Bar, DSC, RD, RNR). (12)

15 Apr 1943
HMS H 33 (Lt. J.A. Spender, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Lough Foyle with HMS Pelican (Cdr. G.N. Brewer, RN), HMS Jed (Lt.Cdr. R.C. Freaker, DSO, RD, RNR), HMCS Algoma (T/A/Lt.Cdr. J. Harding, RCNR), HMCS Calgary (T/Lt. H.K. Hill, RCNVR) and HMS Sunflower (A/Lt.Cdr. J. Plomer, RCNVR). (12)

6 May 1943
German U-boat U-438 was sunk in the North Atlantic north-east of Newfoundland, in approximate position 52°00'N, 45°10'W, by depth charges from the British sloop HMS Pelican (Cdr. G.N. Brewer, RN).

4 Jun 1943
HMS Universal (Lt. C. Gordon, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Londonderry with HMS Pelican (Cdr. G.N. Brewer, RN), HMS Jed (Lt.Cdr. R.C. Freaker, DSO, RD, RNR), HMS Wrestler (Lt. R.W.B. Lacon, DSC, RN), HMS Spey (Cdr. H.G. Boys-Smith, DSO and Bar, DSC, RD, RNR) and HMS Vanquisher (Lt.Cdr. G.A.G. Ormsby, RN). (13)

14 Jun 1943
German U-boat U-334 was sunk in the North Atlantic south-west of Iceland, in position 58°16'N, 28°20'W, by depth charges from the British frigate HMS Jed (Lt.Cdr. H.C. Freaker, DSO, RNR) and the British sloop HMS Pelican (Cdr. G.N. Brewer, RN).

18 Jul 1943
HMS H 34 (Lt. B. Charles, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Lough Foyle with HMS Pelican (Capt. G.N. Brewer, RN). (14)

19 Jul 1943
HMS H 34 (Lt. B. Charles, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Lough Foyle with HMS Pelican (Capt. G.N. Brewer, RN), HMS Wear (Cdr. E. Wheeler, RD, RNR), HMS Jed (Lt.Cdr. R.C. Freaker, DSO, RD, RNR), HMS Rother (Lt.Cdr. R.V.E. Case, DSO, DSC and Bar, RD, RNR), HMS Saxifage (T/Lt. J. Renwick, DSO, RNR) and one other vessel [unable to read the name in the log of HMS H 34]. (14)

23 Aug 1943
On the 23th August 1943 the 40th Escort Group (Cdr. Dallison), consisting of the sloops HMS Landguard, HMS Bideford, HMS Hastings and the frigates HMS Exe, HMS Moyola and HMS Waveney were deployed on a U-boat hunt off Cape Ortegal. The whole operation was covered by the British light cruiser HMS Bermuda.

On the 25th August the Canadian 5th Support Group (Cdr. Tweed), consisting of the British frigates HMS Nene, HMS Tweed and the Canadian corvettes HMCS Calgary, HMCS Edmundston and HMCS Snowberry were deployed to relieve the 40th Escort Group. While this was in progress the ships were attacked at 1415 hrs by 14 Dornier Do-217's and 7 Ju-88's. with the new German weapon, the Henschel Glider Bombs, (the "Hs293 A-1"). Designed by the German Professor Herbert Wagner. HMS Landguard and HMS Bideford were the first of the Allied and R.N. ships to be attacked and damaged by them. This being the first time of their being brought into action against Allied ships. Several sailors were injured on HMS Bideford and one sailor was killed.

Another two days later on the 27th August 1943 the Canadian 5th Support group was relieved by the 1st Support group (Cdr. Brewer) consisting of the sloops HMS Pelican, HMS Egret and the frigates HMS Jed, HMS Rother, HMS Spey and HMS Evenlode. Also the covering cruiser HMS Bermuda was relieved by the Canadian destroyer HMCS Athabaskan and the British destroyer HMS Grenville. These ships were also attacked by the Germans. This time with 18 Dornier Do-217?s also carrying Henschel Glider Bombs. HMCS Athabaskan was heavily damaged and HMS Egret was sunk with the loss of 194 of her crew. After this loss the U-boat hunt was blown off.

16 Oct 1943
HMS Venturer (Lt. J.S. Launders, DSC, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Larne with HMS Pelican (Cdr. J.S. Dalison, DSO, RN) and HMS Evenlode (T/A/Lt.Cdr. A.L. Turner, RNR). (15)

15 Nov 1943

Convoy KMF 26.

This convoy departed the Clyde on 15 November 1943 and arrived at Alexandria / Port Said on 30 November 1943 / 1 December 1943.

This convoy was made up of the following transports; Arundel Castle (British, 19118 GRT, built 1921), Cameronia (British, 16297 GRT, built 1920), Chinese Prince (British, 9485 GRT, built 1943), City of Lincoln (British, 8039 GRT, built 1938), Clan Campbell (British, 9545 GRT, built 1943), Dempo (British, 17024 GRT, built 1931), Duchess of Bedford (British, 20123 GRT, built 1928), Dunnottar Castle (British, 15007 GRT, built 1936), Franconia (British, 20175 GRT, built 1923), Highland Princess (British, 14133 GRT, built 1930), Monarch of Bermuda (British, 22424 GRT, built 1931), Orion (British, 23371 GRT, built 1935), Ranchi (British, 16738 GRT, built 1925), Reina del Pacifico (British, 17702 GRT, built 1931), Samanco (British, 8336 GRT, built 1943), Samaria (British, 19597 GRT, built 1921), Sarmiento (British, 8335 GRT, built 1943) and Scythia (British, 19761 GRT, built 1920).

On departure the convoy was escorted by the light cruiser HMS Birmingham (Capt. H.W. Williams, RN) (actually joined on the 16th), sloops HMS Pelican (Cdr. J.S. Dalison, DSO, RN, S.O. of A/S escort), HMS Woodpecker (Lt.Cdr. H.L. Pryse, RNR) and the frigates HMS Evenlode (T/A/Lt.Cdr. A.L. Turner, RNR), HMS Jed (Lt.Cdr. R.C. Freaker, DSO and Bar, RD, RNR), HMS Rother (Lt.Cdr. W.R. Hickey, RNR) and HMS Spey (Lt.Cdr. B.A. Rogers, RD, RNR)

In the afternoon of 19 November, HMS Birmingham fuelled HMS Spey as the frigate had two out of four fuel tanks contaminated with seawater drastically effecting her range. With this underway refuelling she was able to continue on to Algiers.

During the morning of 20 November, the frigate HMS Rother also received some fuel from HMS Birmingham.

On passing the Straits of Gibraltar, HMS Birmingham parted company with the convoy and entered Gibraltar harbour. The AA cruiser HMS Colombo (Capt. D.H. Hall-Thompson, RN) and the destroyers HMS Anthony (Lt.Cdr. J.H. Wallace, DSC, RN) and HMS Brilliant (Lt.Cdr. J. Smallwood, RN) joined the convoy coming from Gibraltar. Also the submarine HMS Stonehenge (Lt. D.S.M. Verschoyle-Campbell, DSC and Bar, RN) joined the convoy for passage to Alexandria.

On the 25th, HMS Anthony and HMS Spey parted company with the convoy.

Off Oran / Mers-el-Kebir the transports Egra (British, 5108 GRT, built 1911), Karoa (British, 7009 GRT, built 1915) and Rohna (British, 8602 GRT, built 1926) joined the convoy. They were escorted by the destroyer escorts USS Frederick C. Davcis (Lt.Cdr. O.W. Goepner, USNR), USS Herbert C. Jones (T/Lt.Cdr. A.W. Gardes, Jr., USN) and the minesweepers USS Pioneer (Lt. L.E. Rogers, Jr., USNR) and USS Portent (Lt. H.C. Plummer, USNR).

Off Algiers transport Monarch of Bermuda and the escorts HMS Brilliant, HMS Pelican, HMS Woodpecker, HMS Evenlode, HMS Jed, HMS Rother parted company with the convoy while the escort destroyers HMS Atherstone (Lt.Cdr. E.N. Wood, DSC, RNVR), HMS Catterick (Lt.Cdr. A. Tyson, RN, HMS Cleveland (Lt.Cdr. J.K. Hamilton, RN), RHS Miaoulis and ORP Slazak (Cdr. R. Nalecz-Tyminski, ORP) joined the convoy.

In the afternoon of 26 November the convoy was attacked by German aircraft and the transport Rohna was sunk by a glider bomb in position 36°56'N, 05°20'E. 1149 crew and passengers (mostly US troops) were killed in this attack.

Off Philipeville the transports Cameronia, Clan Campbell and Duchess of Bedford parted company with the convoy to proceed to that place while the transport Derbyshire joined the convoy coming from there.

On 27 February first HMS Colombo and later USS Frederick C. Davis and USS Herbert C. Jones parted company with the convoy to proceed to Bizerta.

The remainder of the convoy proceeded towards Alexandria / Port Said.

14 Mar 1944
HMS Vigorous (Lt. J.C. Ogle, DSC, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Larne with HMS Pelican (Cdr. J.S. Dalison, DSO, RN). (16)

12 Apr 1944
HrMs O 9 (Lt. R.W. van Lynden, RNN) participated in A/S exercises off Lough Foyle together with HMCS Bittersweet (T/A/Lt.Cdr. F.B. Brooks-Hill, RCNVR), HMCS La Malbaie (T/A/Lt.Cdr. J.S. Davis, RCNVR), HMCS Prince Rupert (T/Lt.Cdr. R.W. Draney, RCNR), HMCS Saskatchewan (T/Lt.Cdr. A.H. Easton, DSC, RCNR), HMCS Eyebright (T/Lt. H.L. Quinn, RCNVR), HMCS Napanee (T/Lt. S. Henderson, RCNR) and HMCS Forrest Hill (T/Lt. E.U. Jones, RCNVR). (17)

13 Apr 1944
HMS H 28 (Lt. A.S. Melville-Ross, DSC, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Lough Foyle with HMCS Bittersweet (T/A/Lt.Cdr. F.B. Brooks-Hill, RCNVR), HMCS Napanee (T/Lt. S. Henderson, RCNR), HMCS Saskatchewan (T/Lt.Cdr. A.H. Easton, DSC, RCNR), HMCS Prince Rupert (T/Lt.Cdr. R.W. Draney, RCNR), HMS Bickerton (Cdr. D.G.F.W. MacIntyre, DSO and 2 Bars, RN) and HMS Kempthorne (Lt.Cdr. A. Brown, RD, RNR) (18)

14 Apr 1944
German U-boat U-448 in the North Atlantic north-east of the Azores, in position 46°22'N, 19°35'W, by depth charges from the Canadian frigate HMCS Swansea (A/Cdr. C.A. King, DSO, DSC, RCNR) and the British sloop HMS Pelican (Cdr. J.S. Dalison, DSO, RN).

3 May 1944
HrMs O 15 (Lt. J.B.M.J. Maas, RNN) conducted A/S exercises off Campbeltown with HMS Pelican (Cdr. J.S. Dalison, DSO, RN) and HMS Crane (Lt.Cdr. R.G. Jenkins, RN). (19)

Sources

  1. ADM 173/16184
  2. ADM 53/112488 + ADM 199/362
  3. Personal communication
  4. ADM 199/376
  5. File 2.12.03.6366 (Dutch Archives, The Hague, Netherlands)
  6. File 2.12.03.6387 (Dutch Archives, The Hague, Netherlands)
  7. ADM 199/1218
  8. File 2.12.03.6369 (Dutch Archives, The Hague, Netherlands)
  9. ADM 173/17252
  10. ADM 173/17813
  11. ADM 199/635
  12. ADM 173/17781
  13. ADM 173/18351
  14. ADM 173/17796
  15. ADM 173/18449
  16. ADM 173/19380
  17. File 2.12.03.6372 (Dutch Archives, The Hague, Netherlands)
  18. ADM 173/18472
  19. File 2.12.03.6399 (Dutch Archives, The Hague, Netherlands)

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


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