HMS Hardy (ii) (R 08)
Destroyer of the V class
|Navy||The Royal Navy|
|Built by||John Brown Shipbuilding & Engineering Company Ltd. (Clydebank, Scotland)|
|Ordered||1 Sep 1941|
|Laid down||14 May 1942|
|Launched||18 Mar 1943|
|Commissioned||14 Aug 1943|
|Lost||30 Jan 1944|
|Loss position||73° 40'N, 24° 30'E|
At 03.46 and 03.54 hours on 30 January 1944, U-957 (Schaar) fired two Gnats at the escorts of the convoy JW-56B and heard two detonations, which were claimed by Schaar as hits on two destroyers, but they were end-of-run detonations.
At 03.57 hours, U-278 fired a Gnat, which struck HMS Hardy (Capt. William Geoffrey Arthur Robson, DSO and Bar, DSC, RN). This hit was observed and claimed by U-957 and also by U-472 (Forstner), which had fired a Gnat at 03.57 hours, but missed the HNoMS Stord. At 04.20 hours, U-957 fired a spread of three FAT torpedoes at two corvettes, which laid stopped (probably the destroyer HMS Venus rescuing survivors from the torpedoed destroyer HMS Hardy) and heard one detonation after four minutes, but no destroyer had been hit at this time.
HMS Hardy had been seriously damaged and had to be sunk by a coup de grâce by HMS Venus in position 73º40'N, 24º30'E. This detonation was heard by U-601 (Hansen), which thought that her Gnat, fired at 05.24 hours had hit this destroyer. The U-boat then crossed the sinking position of HMS Hardy and sighted an oil slick and debris.
Hit by U-boat
|U-boat Attack||See our U-boat attack entry for the HMS Hardy (ii)|
Commands listed for HMS Hardy (ii) (R 08)
Please note that we're still working on this section.
|1||Lt.Cdr. Richard Horncastle, RN||6 Jul 1943||10 Dec 1943|
|2||Capt. William Geoffrey Arthur Robson, DSO, DSC, RN||10 Dec 1943||30 Jan 1944|
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Notable events involving Hardy (ii) include:
27 Aug 1943
HrMs O 15 (Lt.Cdr. A.J. Schouwenaar, RNN) conducted A/S exercises at / off Scapa Flow with HMS Hardy (Lt.Cdr. R. Horncastle, RN), HMS Rocket (Lt.Cdr. H.B. Acworth, OBE, RN) and HMS Zetland (Lt.Cdr. J.V. Wilkinson, DSC, RN). (1)
28 Aug 1943
HrMs O 15 (Lt.Cdr. A.J. Schouwenaar, RNN) conducted A/S exercises at / off Scapa Flow with HMS Spartan (Capt. P.V. McLaughlin, RN), HMS Hardy (Lt.Cdr. R. Horncastle, RN), HMS Rocket (Lt.Cdr. H.B. Acworth, OBE, RN), HMCS Iroquois (Cdr. J.C. Hibbard DSC, RCN) and USS Isherwood (Cdr. R.E. Gadrow, USN). (1)
5 Oct 1943
Around 2100A/5, the battleship HMS Valiant (Capt. L.H. Ashmore, RN) and the aircraft carriers HMS Illustrious (Capt. R.L.B. Cunliffe, RN, flying the flag of Rear-Admiral C. Moody, RN), HMS Formidable (Capt. A.G. Talbot, DSO, RN) and HMS Unicorn (Capt. Q.D. Graham, CBE, DSO, RN) departed Gibraltar for the U.K. They were escorted by the destroyers HMS Onslow (Capt. J.A. McCoy, DSO, RN), HMS Obedient (Lt.Cdr. H. Unwin, DSC and Bar, RN), HMS Hardy (Lt.Cdr. R. Horncastle, RN), HMS Venus (Cdr. J.S.M. Richardson DSO, RN), HNoMS Stord (Lt.Cdr. S.V. Storheill), HMS Mahratta (Lt.Cdr. E.A.F. Drought, DSC, RN), HMS Matchless (Lt.Cdr. J. Mowlam, DSO, RN) and HMS Inglefield (A/Cdr. C.F.H. Churchill, DSC, RN).
At 1948A/6, HMS Illustrious and HMS Formidable parted company to return to Gibraltar after they had been ordered to do so. They took HMS Venus, HNoMS Stord, HMS Obedient and HMS Inglefield with them. They arrived at Gibraltar around 1445A/7.
At 1745A/7, HMS Matchless broke down. HMS Mahratta was ordered to stand by her while the other ships continued. They rejoined around 1800A/8.
At 0810A/9, HMS Valiant, HMS Mahratta and HMS Matchless parted company and set course for Plymouth where they arrived around 1600A/10.
HMS Unicorn, HMS Onslow and HMS Hardy proceeded to Greenock arriving there around 1130A/10. (2)
29 Oct 1943
In the afternoon, the battleships HMS Nelson (Capt. G.H.E. Russell, RN) and HMS Rodney (Capt. R.O. Fitzroy, RN) departed Algiers for the UK. They were escorted by the destroyers HMS Troubridge (Capt. C.L. Firth, MVO, RN), HMS Tumult (Lt.Cdr. N. Lanyon, RN), HMS Tyrian (Cdr. C.W. Greening, RN), HMS Offa (Lt.Cdr. R.F. Leonard, RN), ORP Piorun (Cdr. S.T. Dzienisiewicz) and HMS Tartar (Cdr. St.J.R.J. Tyrwhitt, DSC, RN).
At 1745A/30, the destroyers HMS Teazer (Lt.Cdr. A.A.F. Talbot, DSO and Bar, RN), HMS Rocket (Lt.Cdr. H.B. Acworth, OBE, RN) and HMS Obedient (Lt.Cdr. H. Unwin, DSC and Bar, RN) joined coming from Gibraltar after which HMS Tartar and HMS Offa parted company to fuel at Gibraltar.
At 0310A/31, HMS Tartar and HMS Offa rejoined.
At 0845A/31, HMS Troubridge, HMS Tumult, HMS Tyrian and ORP Piorun parted company.
At 0400A/4, HMS Rocket and HMS Teazer parted company.
At 0430A/4, the remainder of the screen, HMS Tartar, HMS Offa and HMS Obedient, parted company due to fuel shortage.
At 1830A/4, HMS Rodney parted company with HMS Nelson to proceed to the Clyde where she arrived in the evening of November 5th.
HMS Nelson continued on to Rosyth where she arrived in the early afternoon of the 6th. The destroyers HMS Hardy (Lt.Cdr. R. Horncastle, RN) and HMCS Huron (Lt.Cdr. H.S. Rayner, DSC, RCN) had departed Scapa Flow around 1700A/5 and made rendezvous around 2055A/5. They remained with the battleship until around 1100A/6 when off May Island. They returned to Scapa Flow around 2000A/6. (3)
8 Nov 1943
HMS Spiteful (Lt.Cdr. F.H. Sherwood, DSC, RCNVR) conducted A/S exercises at Scapa Flow with HMS Bellona (Capt. C.F.W. Norris, RN), HMS Hardy (Lt.Cdr. R. Horncastle, RN), HMS Kempenfelt (Lt.Cdr. J.B. Marjoribanks, RN), HMS Onslaught (Cdr. W.H. Selby, DSC, RN) and HMS Termagent (Lt.Cdr. J.P. Scatchard, DSC, RN). (4)
10 Dec 1943
HMS Telemachus (Cdr. W.D.A. King, DSO, DSC, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Scapa Flow together with HMS Tuscan (Lt.Cdr. C.H.de B. Newby, RN), HMS Tenacious (Lt.Cdr. D.F. Townsend, RN), HMS Meteor (Lt.Cdr. D.J.B. Jewitt, RN) and HMS Hardy (Lt.Cdr. R. Horncastle, RN). (5)
6 Jan 1944
HMS Una (T/L. P.S. Thirsk, RNR) conducted RD/F exercises off Stornoway with HMS Hardy (Capt. W.G.A. Robson, DSO, DSC, RN), HMS Venus (Cdr. J.S.M. Richardson DSO, RN) and HMS Vigilant (Lt.Cdr. L.W.L. Argles, RN). (6)
7 Jan 1944
HMS Una (T/L. P.S. Thirsk, RNR) conducted RD/F exercises off Stornoway with HMS Hardy (Capt. W.G.A. Robson, DSO, DSC, RN), HMS Venus (Cdr. J.S.M. Richardson DSO, RN), HMS Verulam (Lt.Cdr. W.S. Thomas, DSC, RN) and HMS Vigilant (Lt.Cdr. L.W.L. Argles, RN). (6)
- File 2.12.03.6398 (Dutch Archives, The Hague, Netherlands)
- ADM 53/117522 + ADM 53/117661 + ADM 53/118665 + ADM 53/118677
- ADM 53/118257 + ADM 53/118484 + ADM 199/632 + ADM 199/641
- ADM 173/18096
- ADM 173/18214
- ADM 173/19188
ADM numbers indicate documents at the British National Archives at Kew, London.
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