Allied Warships

ORP Burza (H 73)

Destroyer of the Wicher class

NavyThe Polish Navy
TypeDestroyer
ClassWicher 
PennantH 73 
Built byChantiers Navals Francais (Caen, France) 
Ordered 
Laid down1 Nov 1927 
Launched16 Apr 1929 
Commissioned10 Jul 1932 
End service 
History

Burza means storm in English.

Escaped to Leith, Scotland in August / September 1939.
Decommisioned to reserve in 1944.
Return to Poland in 1951.
Became a museum in 1960.
Scrapped in 1977 (or possibly as late as 1985).

 

Commands listed for ORP Burza (H 73)

Please note that we're still working on this section.

CommanderFromTo
1Kmdr ppor. Stanislaw Michal Nahorski, ORP31 Dec 193716 Feb 1940
2Kmdr ppor. Wojciech Francki, ORP16 Feb 19407 Oct 1940
3Kmdr. ppor. Antoni Doroszkowski, ORP7 Oct 194030 Nov 1940
4Kpt. mar. Jan Tchorznicki, ORP30 Nov 194022 Jan 1941
5Kpt. mar. Zbigniew Wojewodzki, ORP22 Jan 194114 Mar 1942

6Kpt. mar. Franciszek Pitulko, ORP6 Aug 194226 Jun 1944

7Kmdr ppor. W. Trzebinski, ORP21 Aug 194415 Nov 1944
8Kpt. mar. K. Sawicz-Korsak, ORP15 Nov 1944Jun 1945

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Notable events involving Burza include:


1 Sep 1939
The Polish destroyers Burza (Komandor Podporucznik Stanislaw Michal Nahorski, ORP), Grom (Komandor Podporucznik Aleksander Hulewicz, ORP) and Blyskawica (Komandor Podporucznik Wlodzimierz Andrzey Kodrebski-Poraj, ORP) were met in the North Sea by British aircraft and the British destroyers HMS Wallace (Lt.Cdr. William Maurice Lloyd Astwood, RN) and HMS Wanderer (Cdr Reginald Francis Morice, RN). They were escorted to Leith.

22 Mar 1940
The Polish destroyers Burza (under her new commander Komandor Podporucznik Wojciech Francki) and Blyskawica escorted three French submarines and their tender Jules Verne on their route from Brest to Harwich.

7 Apr 1940
The light cruisers HMS Galatea (Capt. B.B. Schofield, RN, flying the flag of Vice-Admiral G.F.B. Edward-Collins, CB, KCVO, RN), HMS Arethusa (Capt. Q.D. Graham, RN) and the destroyers HMS Afridi (Capt. P.L. Vian, RN), HMS Cossack (Cdr. R.St.V. Sherbrooke, RN), HMS Gurkha (Cdr. A.W. Buzzard, RN), HMS Mohawk (Cdr. J.W.M. Eaton, RN), HMS Sikh (Cdr. J.A. Giffard, RN), HMS Zulu (Cdr. J.S. Crawford), HMS Kashmir (Cdr. H.A. King, RN), HMS Kelvin (Lt.Cdr. J.L. Machin, RN), ORP Burza (Lt.Cdr. W. Francki), ORP Blyscawica (Lt.Cdr. S.M. Nahorski) and ORP Grom (Lt.Cdr. S. Hryniewiecki) departed Rosyth in the evening for operations of Norway. They were to proceed to a position west of Stavanger and then were to sweep northwards. On the 9th they made rendezvous with the Home Fleet.

9 Apr 1940
The Polish destroyers Burza, Grom and Blyskawica were ordered to join the British destroyer HMS Tartar and provide escort for convoy HN-24 (31 merchants escaping from Norway to England, some of them were loaded with Norwegian gold). The convoy reached Britain without any loses. (1)

12 Apr 1940
The Polish destroyers Burza, Grom and Blyskawica entered Rosyth for refuelling. Then they were sent to Scapa Flow. (1)

19 Apr 1940
The Polish destroyers Burza, Grom and Blyskawica left Scapa Flow and head to Narvik. During a storm Burza was damaged by high waves and forced to return. (1)

26 Apr 1940
The Polish destroyer Burza and the British destroyer HMS Grafton were part of an escort of small convoy (two cargo ships and one tanker). Those vessels were sailing to Skjel Fjord, Norway where an Allied supply base was located. (1)

30 Apr 1940
In dense fog the British tanker Boardale (8400 GRT) hit the rocks in the Asan Fjord near Narvik and was abandoned by the crew. The Polish destroyer Burza rescued the survivors. (1)

1 May 1940
The Polish destroyer Burza reached Harstad and took part in the AA defence of this harbour. (1)

5 May 1940
The Polish destroyer Burza provided AA cover for Allied merchants off Skaaland, Norway. 11 German air raids were conducted. Few ships were slightly damaged. (1)

7 May 1940
The Polish destroyer Burza conducted a reconnaissance patrol in Bjerkvik area. At this time commander of Allied 1st Light Rifle Division, General Marie Emile Bethouart was onboard with his staff. Bjerkvik was the port where Allied troops were planned to be unloaded. (1)

8 May 1940
Six strong German air attacks took place on Harstad. Burza was involved in the AA defence. Two bombs exploded near the destroyer but caused no damage. Later that day Burza found and rescued the crew of British airplane which had been shot down. (1)

10 May 1940
The Polish destroyers Burza and Blyskawica left Norwegian waters in order to return to Scapa Flow. (1)

13 May 1940
The destroyers HMS Jaguar (Lt.Cdr. J.F.W. Hine, RN), HMS Juno (Cdr. W.E. Wilson, RN), HMS Grafton (Cdr. C.E.C. Robinson, RN) and ORP Burza (Lt.Cdr. W. Francki) departed Scapa Flow for Harwich. En-route HMS Juno was detached to Rosyth after which she departed again to run over the DG range at Inchkeith before she continued her passage to Harwich.

All destroyers arrived at Harwich on the 14th. (2)

24 May 1940
The Polish destroyer Burza was ordered to join the British destroyers HMS Vimiera and HMS Wessex and shell German positions in Calais area. At 16.20 the Allied vessels opened fire on enemy armoured column at Sangatte Hill, west of Calais. 10 minutes later they were attacked by 27 German airplanes which hit and sank HMS Wessex. HMS Vimiera managed to escape. Then the entire enemy air group concentrated on the Polish destroyer. The AA guns (2 40 mm) jammed due to shrapnel hits, three bombs exploded in the water. They caused boiler damage and loss of speed. The commander (Komandor Podporucznik Wojciech Francki) ordered to emergency launch the torpedoed and drop all depth charges, trying to avoid additional explosions. Shortly after this, two bombs hit the Burza and badly damaged her. However the airplanes had dropped all of their bombs and broke off the attack. The crew managed to stop the leakage and return to Dover. One German airplane was shot down during the action.

6 Aug 1940
"Burza" (Kapitan Marynarki Doroszkowski) left Portsmouth. She was ordered to steam to Scapa Flow. During the cruise, she received radio report about U-boat operating nearby. British airplane marked the area with smoke buoys. "Burza" started searching for enemy. After two hours, she detected an U-boat and attacked with depth charges. Crew observed oil stains on the surface. Admiralty claimed this U-boat as "probably badly damaged".

30 Aug 1940
The Polish destroyers Blyskawica and Burza joined the escort of a convoy heading to the USA. Later Burza suffered a malfunction and was forced to return to base. (1)

11 Sep 1940
HMS Newcastle (Capt. E.A. Aylmer, DSC, RN), ORP Burza (Lt.Cdr. W. Francki) and ORP Blyscawica (Lt.Cdr. S. Hryniewiecki) conducted exercises off Plymouth. (3)

18 Sep 1940
HMS Newcastle (Capt. E.A. Aylmer, DSC, RN), ORP Burza (Lt.Cdr. W. Francki), HMS Mackay (Cdr. G.H. Stokes, RN) and HMS Vansittart (Lt.Cdr. R.L.S. Gaisford, RN) conducted exercises off Plymouth. In the evening the went to sea again for night exercises. (3)

10 Oct 1940

Operation Medium.


Bombardment of Cherbourg.

10 October 1940.

The battleship HMS Revenge (Capt. E.R. Archer, RN) departed Plymouth for a night bombardment of Cherbourg during the night of 10/11 October. She was being escorted by the destroyers HMS Jackal (Cdr. C.L. Firth, MVO, RN), HMS Jaguar (Lt.Cdr. J.F.W. Hine, RN), HMS Javelin (Cdr. A.F. Pugsley, RN), HMS Jupiter (Cdr. D.B. Wyburd, RN), HMS Kashmir (Cdr. H.A. King, RN), HMS Kelvin (Cdr. J.H. Allison, DSO, RN) and HMS Kipling (Cdr. A. St. Clair-Ford, RN).

A cover force was also sailed from Plymouth on the same day. This force was to provide cover to the east of the bombardment force and was made up of the light cruisers HMS Newcastle (Capt. E.A. Aylmer, DSC, RN), HMS Emerald (Capt. F.C. Flynn, RN), the British destroyers HMS Broke (Cdr. B.G. Scurfield, RN), HMS Wanderer (Cdr. J.H. Ruck-Keene, DSC, RN and the Polish destroyers Garland (Cdr. K. Namiesniowski, ORP) and Burza (Cdr. A. Doroszkowski, ORP).

The light cruiser HMS Cardiff (Capt. P.K. Enright, RN) escorted by the destroyers HMS Witch (Lt.Cdr. J.R. Barnes, RN) and HMS Volunteer (Lt.Cdr. N. Lanyon, RN) departed Portsmouth to provide cover for the operation to the west of the bombardment force.

A flotilla of MA/SB boats was sailed from Plymouth to provide anti E-boat protection. These were HMS MA/SB 40, HMS MA/SB 42, HMS MA/SB 43, HMS MA/SB 44, HMS MA/SB 45, HMS MA/SB 46 and HMS MA/SB 51.

During the bombardment, which started around 0330A/11 and laster for about 20 minutes, HMS Revenge fired 120 rounds of 15” in eighteen minutes from range between 14000 and 16000 yards. Her escorting destroyers fired 801 rounds of 4.7” during the first four minutes of the bombardment and then formed a screen on the battleship.

Large fires were seen to erupt in the target area. Shore defences opened up as for being under air attack. The ships were fired on only after the bombardment had ceased. No ships were hit though despite the enemy fire being accurate.

The western cover group returned to Plymouth at 0800A/11.

The bombardment force and the eastern cover group arrived at Portsmouth around the same time.

13 Oct 1940
HMS Kelvin (Cdr. J.H. Allison, DSO, RN) and Burza (Lt.Cdr. A. Doroszkowski) departed Plymouth on this day. Both returned the next day. They might have been on patrol in the western Channel during the night of 13/14 October 1940. [No further details currently available.] (4)

15 Oct 1940
Around 1830A/15, HMS Revenge (Capt. E.R. Archer, RN), departed Portsmouth for Plymouth. She was being escorted by the destroyers HMS Wanderer (Cdr. J.H. Ruck-Keene, DSC, RN), HMS Witch (Lt.Cdr. J.R. Barnes, RN) and Burza (Cdr. A. Doroszkowski, ORP).

They arrived at Plymouth around 0900A/16. (5)

26 Oct 1940
Burza (Lt.Cdr. Pitulko) was ordered to rescue survivors from the British troop ship Empress of Britain which had been heavily damaged by bombs. The Polish destroyer picked up 254 men. (1)

16 Nov 1940
Due to dense fog, the Polish destroyer Burza collided with British ASW trawler HMS Arsenal and suffered bow damage. HMS Arsenal was sunk. (1)

30 Jul 1941
After long repairs and a refit, Burza (Kapitan Marynarki Wojewodzki) became part of the escort of a convoy from Greenock to Iceland.

30 Aug 1941
The convoy reached Hvalfjord, Iceland. (1)

8 Sep 1941
Burza collided with patrol vessel Rosemary off Milford Haven. (1)

11 Sep 1941
Burza returned to Greenock and was sent to Glasgow for repairs that lasted one week. (1)

2 Feb 1942
Burza started a refit at Glasgow. (1)

3 Dec 1942
Burza (Kapitan Marynarki Pitulko) was part of Escort Group B-6 commanded by Cdr. Ralph Heathcote, R.N. in the British destroyer HMS Fame. The Escort Group escorted convoy HX-217 to Great Britain.

7 Dec 1942
At night the convoy was attacked by U-boats. Burza encountered the enemy twice. The first U-boat was attacked by salvo of 10 depth charges and forced to retreat. The second was spotted on the surface by lookouts. Kapitan Marynarki Pitulko ordered to attack the submarine with torpedoes(!), however enemy vessel managed to dive before the attack occurred. Instead of torpedoes, depth charges were dropped. After this attack the contact was lost.

9 Dec 1942
Around 2200hours the sonar operator on Burza detected a submerged U-boat. After short pursuit the contact was lost. Few minutes later another submarine was detected, this time on the surface at 900-1000 meters. The Polish destroyer tried to ram the enemy, but the German vessel managed to dive. 10 depth charges were dropped. (1)

14 Dec 1942
The convoy reached the Clyde. It's escorts entered Greenock harbour. (1)

20 Dec 1942
Escort Group B-6 (with Burza) left the Clyde with a convoy bound for Canada. (1)

31 Dec 1942
The convoy reached St. John's, Canada. (1)

11 Jan 1943
Escort Group B-6, including the Polish destroyer Burza, leaves Canada escorting convoy SC-116 to Great Britain. (1)

27 Jan 1943
Convoy SC-116 arrived in Greenock. (1)

21 Feb 1943
Burza was ordered to join the Escort Group A-3 (commanded by Cdr. Paul Heineman) which was escorting convoy ON-166. (1)

22 Feb 1943
During the defence of convoy ON-166 German U-boat U-606 was sunk in the North Atlantic east of Newfoundland, in position 47°44'N, 33°43'W, by depth charges from the US Coast Guard cutter USS Campbell and the Polish destroyer Burza.

During the night Burza detected a submerged submarine and attacked her twice with 20 depth charges. The U-boat was damaged and forced to surface. Then she was shelled with Anti-Aircraft guns and had to dive again. Contact was lost. Shortly after that, the U-boat surfaced again, and was spotted by the US Coast Guard Cutter Campbell (WPG 32), which shelled and rammed the submarine. The heavily damaged U-boat managed to stay on the surface, but was unable to move and fight. The American cutter was also seriously damaged due to ramming. Her commanding officer (Cdr. James Hirshfield) asked for help. Burza answered her call and rushed to the scene. The Polish destroyer provided cover for USCG Spencer until 04.00 AM the next day when she stopped and picked up 7 survivors from U-606. The Polish destroyer again provided cover for the USCG cutter until the evening. Then, due to fuel shortage, she headed for St. John's, Canada.

22 Feb 1943
Around 1300 hours Burza torpedoed and sank the heavily damaged Norwegian whale factory ship N.T. Nielsen-Alonso. (1)

27 Feb 1943
Burza arrived at St. John's, Canada with only 2.5 tons of fuel left in tanks. (1)

18 Sep 1943
HMS Tantivy (Cdr. M.G. Rimington, DSO, RN) conducted attack and A/S exercises off Larne with ORP Burza (Cdr. F. Pitulko, ORP). (6)

24 Sep 1943
HMS H 33 (Lt. D.G. Kent, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Lough Foyle with HMS Dart (Cdr. J.T. Jones, RD, RNR), HMS Viscount (Lt.Cdr. L.E. Woodhouse, RN) and ORP Burza (Cdr. F. Pitulko, ORP). (7)

15 Nov 1943

Operation FT, passage of convoys JW 54A and JW 54B from the U.K. to Northern Russia as well as convoy RA 54B from Northern Russia to the U.K.

Convoy JW 54A

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This convoy departed Loch Ewe on 15 November 1943 for Northern Russia.

It was made up of the following merchant vessels; Daniel Drake (American, 7176 GRT, built 1943), Edmund Fanning (American, 7176 GRT, built 1943), Empire Carpenter (British, 7025 GRT, built 1943), Empire Celia (American, 7025 GRT, built 1943), Empire Nigel (British, 7067 GRT, built 1943), Fort Yukon (British, 7153 GRT, built 1943), Gilbert Stuart (American, 7176 GRT, built 1943), Henry Villard (American, 7176 GRT, built 1942), James Gordon Bennett (American, 7176 GRT, built 1942), James Smith (American, 7181 GRT, built 1942), Junecrest (British, 6945 GRT, built 1942), Mijdrecht (Dutch (tanker), 7493 GRT, built 1931), Norlys (Panamanian (tanker), 9892 GRT, built 1936), Ocean Vanity (British, 7174 GRT, built 1942), Ocean Verity (British, 7174 GRT, built 1942), Park Holland (American, 7176 GRT, built 1943), Thomas Sim Lee (American, 7191 GRT, built 1942) and William Windon (American, 7194 GRT, built 1943).

The rescue vessel Copeland (British, 1526 GRT, built 1923) was also with the convoy.

On departure from Loch Ewe the convoy was escorted by the destroyers HMS Inconstant (Lt.Cdr J.H. Eaden, DSC, RN), HMS Whitehall (Lt.Cdr. P.J. Cowell, DSC, RN), HMS Termagent (Lt.Cdr. J.P. Scatchard, DSC, RN), ORP Burza (Cdr. F. Pitulko, ORP), escort destroyer HMS Brissenden (Lt. D.D.E. Vivian, RN), minesweeper HMS Hussar (Lt.Cdr. R.C. Biggs, DSO, DSC, RN) and the corvette HMS Heather (T/Lt. W.L. Turner, RNR).

On 17 November, the destroyer HMS Onslaught (Cdr. W.H. Selby, DSC, RN) departed Seidisfjord, Iceland to join the convoy. She was escorting the Russian minesweepers T 116, T 117 and patrol vessels BO 205, BO 207 and BO 212 which were to join the convoy for passage to Northern Russia. [These were the former American minesweepers AM 143 / Arcade, AM 144 / Arch and patrol vessels SC 1287, SC 1074 and SC 721 respectively.]

Later on 17 November the destroyers HMS Onslow (Capt. J.A. McCoy, DSO, RN), HMS Obedient (Lt.Cdr. H. Unwin, DSC and Bar, RN), HMS Orwell (Lt.Cdr. J.M. Hodges, DSO, RN), HMCS Iroquois (Cdr. J.C. Hibbard DSC, RCN), HMCS Haida (Cdr. H.G. De Wolf, RCN), HMCS Huron (Lt.Cdr. H.S. Rayner, DSC, RCN) and HMS Impulsive (Lt.Cdr. P. Bekenn, RN) also sailed from Seidisfjord to join the convoy.

On 18 November all ships that had departed Seidisfjord the day before joined the convoy. HMS Termagant, ORP Burza and HMS Brissenden then parted company with the convoy. The British ships proceeded to Seidisfjord arriving on the 19th, ORP Burza set course to return to Loch Ewe also arriving on the 19th.

On 19 November HMS Obedient developed serious rudder defects and she returned to Seidisfjord arriving later the same day.

On 24 November eight of the merchant vessels arrived in the Kola Inlet escorted by HMS Onslow, HMS Onslaught, HMS Obedient, HMS Orwell, HMCS Iroquois, HMCS Haida, HMCS Huron and HMS Impulsive. The five small Russian craft that had been with the convoy arrived in the Kola Inlet on the 25th.

The remaining ships proceeded to Archangelsk escorted by HMS Inconstant, HMS Whitehall, HMS Hussar and HMS Heather. These were later replaced by the minesweeper HMS Seagull (T/A/Lt.Cdr. R.W Ellis, DSC, RNR), two Russian destroyers and three Russian minesweepers. On the joining of these ships HMS Inconstant, HMS Whitehall and HMS Heather parted company and proceeded to Iokanka. The remainder of the convoy arrived in the Archangelsk area on the 26th.

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Convoy JW 54B

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This convoy departed Loch Ewe on 22 November 1943 for Northern Russia.

It was made up of the following merchant vessels; Arthur L. Perry (American, 7176 GRT, built 1943), Daldorch (British, 5571 GRT, built 1930), Empire Lionel (British, 7030 GRT, built 1942), Empire Stalwart (British, 7045 GRT, built 1943), Eugene Field (American, 7176 GRT, built 1943), Fort Columbia (British, 7155 GRT, built 1942), Fort McMurray (British, 7133 GRT, built 1942), Fort Poplar (American, 7134 GRT, built 1942), Horace Gray (American, 7200 GRT, built 1943), John Fitch (American, 7181 GRT, built 1942), Ocean Strength (British, 7173 GRT, built 1942), San Adolfo (British (tanker), 7365 GRT, built 1935), Thomas Kearns (American, 7194 GRT, built 1943) and William L. Marcy (American, 7176 GRT, built 1942).

The rescue ship Rathlin (British, 1600 GRT, built 1936) was also part of the convoy.

On departure from Loch Ewe the convoy was escorted by the destroyers HMS Beagle (Lt.Cdr. N.R. Murch, RN), HMS Saladin (T/A/Lt.Cdr. P.G.C. King, RNVR), HMS Skate (Lt. J.C. Rushbrooke, DSC, RN), escort destroyer HMS Middleton (Lt. C.S. Battersby, RN), minesweepers HMS Halcyon (T/A/Lt.Cdr. L.J. Martin, RNVR), HMS Speedwell (Lt.Cdr. T.E. Williams, RD, RNR) and the corvettes HMS Poppy (T/Lt. D.R.C. Onslow, RNR) and HMS Rhododendron (T/Lt. O.B. Medley, RNVR).

On 23 November the corvette HMS Dianella (T/Lt. J.F. Tognola, RNR) joined the convoy.

On 25 November the destroyers HMS Saumarez (Lt.Cdr. E.N. Walmsley, DSC, RN), HMS Savage (Cdr. R.C. Gordon, DSO, RN), HMS Scorpion (Lt.Cdr. W.S. Clouston, RN), HMS Scourge (Lt.Cdr. G.I.M. Balfour, RN), HNoMS Stord (Lt.Cdr. S.V. Storheill), HMS Hardy (Lt.Cdr. R. Horncastle, RN), HMS Venus (Cdr. J.S.M. Richardson DSO, RN) and HMS Vigilant (Lt.Cdr. L.W.L. Argles, RN) departed Seidisfjord, Iceland and joined the convoy. HMS Saladin, HMS Skate, HMS Middleton and HMS Speedwell then parted company and proceeded to Seidisfjord where they arrived on the 26th except for HMS Speedwell which went to Scapa Flow arriving there on the 29th.

On 2 December seven of the merchant vessels detached from the convoy escorted by HMS Saumarez, HMS Savage, HMS Scorpion, HMS Scourge, HNoMS Stord, HMS Hardy, HMS Venus, HMS Vigilant and HMS Halcyon. They proceeded to the Kola Inlet arriving there later the same day.

The other ships continued on to Archangelsk escorted by HMS Beagle, HMS Dianella, HMS Poppy and HMS Rhododendron. They arrived at Archangelsk on 3 December.

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Convoy RA 54B

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This convoy departed Archangelsk on 26 November 1943 for the U.K.

It was made up of the following merchant vessels; Aritgas (Panamanian, 5613 GRT, built 1920), Atlantic (British, 5414 GRT, built 1939), Bering (American, 7631 GRT, built 1920), Dover Hill (British, 5815 GRT, built 1918), Empire Scott (British, 6150 GRT, built 1941), Llandaff (British, 4825 GRT, built 1927), Marathon (Norwegian, 7208 GRT, built 1930), Norlys (Panamanian (tanker), 9892 GRT, built 1936) and Pieter de Hoogh (Dutch, 7168 GRT, built 1941).

The rescue ship Copeland (British, 1526 GRT, built 1923) was also part of the convoy.

On departure from Archangelsk the convoy was escorted by the minesweepers HMS Hussar, HMS Seagull and the A/S trawler HMS Lord Austin (T/Lt. E.L. Wathen, RNR). Also three Russian minesweepers were with the convoy escort.

On 27 November the destroyers HMS Inconstant, HMS Whitehall, minesweeper HMS Harrier (Cdr. H.E.H. Nicholls, RN) and corvette HMS Heather departed Iokanka and joined the convoy. The three Russian minesweepers were then detached.

On 28 November the destroyers HMS Onslow, HMS Onslaught, HMS Orwell, HMCS Iroquois, HMCS Haida, HMCS Huron and HMS Impulsive departed the Kola Inlet and joined the convoy. HMS Hussar and HMS Seagull were then detached to the Kola Inlet where they arrived the following day.

On 4 December HMCS Iroquois was detached to Seidisfjord to fuel. She arrived there later the same day.

On 5 December the destroyers HMS Saladin, HMS Skate and escort destroyers HMS Middleton and HMS Brissenden departed Seidisfjord to join the convoy which they did later the same day. Also on 5 December, first HMS Onslaught and HMCS Huron detached from the convoy and arrived at Seidisfiord to fuel. Then HMCS Haida and HMS Impulslive detached and arrived Seidisfiord to fuel and finally HMS Onslow and HMS Orwell also arrived Seidisfiord to fuel.

On 8 December the convoy split in two and proceeded to east and west coast harbour with local escorts (trawlers).

HMS Inconstant and HMS Whitehall proceeded to the Clyde arriving on 9 December.

HMS Saladin and HMS Skate proceeded to Londonderry arriving on 9 December.

HMS Heather and HMS Lord Austin proceeded to Liverpool arriving there also on 9 December.

HMS Middelton, HMS Brissenden and HMS Harrier proceeded to Scapa Flow arriving there later on the 8th.

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A close cover force was deployed. This was ' Force 1 ', made up of the heavy cruiser HMS Kent (Capt. G.A.B. Hawkins, DSC, MVO, RN, flying the flag of Rear Admiral A.F.E. Palliser, CB, DSC, RN) and the light cruisers HMS Bermuda (Capt. T.H. Back, RN) and HMS Jamaica (Capt. J.L. Storey, DSO, RN) departed Seidisfjord on 19 November to provide cover for convoy JW 54A between 15°00'E and 41°00'E.

' Force 1 ' arrived in the Kola Inlet on 24 November.

' Force 1 ' departed the Kola Inlet on 27 November to provide cover for convoy JW 54B between 15°00'E and 41°00'E and RA 54B between 41°00'E and 05°00'E.

On 3 December, HMS Jamaica was detached to Hvalfjord where she arrived on 5 December.

On 4 December, HMS Kent and HMS Bermuda arrived at Scapa Flow.

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Also a distant cover force was deployed. This was ' Force 2 ', the battle force, which was made up the battleship HMS Anson (Capt. E.D.B. McCarthy, DSO and Bar, RN, flying the flag of Vice-Admiral H.R. Moore, KCB, DSO, CVO, RN), heavy cruiser USS Tuscaloosa (Capt. J.B.W. Waller, USN) and the destroyers USS Forrest (T/Cdr. K.P. Letts, USN), USS Fitch (T/Cdr. K.C. Walpole, USN), USS Corry (T/Cdr. L.B. Ensey, USN) and USS Hobson (T/Lt.Cdr. K. Loveland, USN) departed Akureyri on 19 November to cover convoy JW 54A from approximate position 73°00'N, 11°00'E.

On 24 November, while on passage back to Akureyri, USS Tuscaloosa was detached to Hvalfiord where she arriving later on the same day.

HMS Anson arrived at Akureyri also on 24 November escorted by the American destroyers which then went on to Hvalfjord.

On 28 November ' Force 2 ', now made up of the battleship HMS Anson, light cruiser HMS Belfast (Capt. F.R. Parham, RN, flying the flag of Rear-Admiral R.L. Burnett, CB, DSO, OBE, RN) and the destroyers HMS Musketeer (Cdr. R.L. Fisher, OBE, RN), HMS Matchless (Lt.Cdr. J. Mowlam, DSO, RN), HMS Ashanti (Lt.Cdr. J.R. Barnes, RN) and HMS Obdurate (Lt.Cdr. C.E.L. Sclater, DSO, RN) departed Akureyri to provide cover for convoy JW 54B and RA 54B from approximate position 73°00'N, 11°00'E.

On 29 November the destroyers had to be detached due to heavy weather as they were unable to keep up without sustaining damage. In fact, HMS Matchless had sustained damage and proceeded to Seidisfjord with defects. The destroyers rejoined on 1 December.

On 4 December ' Force 2 ' arrived at Scapa Flow. HMS Matchless also arrived there on the same day. (8)

3 Dec 1943
HMS Stratagem (T/Lt. R.L. Willoughby, RNR) conducted A/S exercises off Lough Foyle with HMS Towy (Cdr. M.J Evans, OBE, RN), ORP Burza (Cdr. F. Pitulko, ORP), FFS Lobelia and HMS Orchis (T/Lt. B.W. Harris, RNVR). (9)

4 Dec 1943
HMS Stratagem (T/Lt. R.L. Willoughby, RNR) conducted A/S exercises off Lough Foyle with FFS Roselys, FFS Lobelia, HMS Towy (Cdr. M.J Evans, OBE, RN) and ORP Burza (Cdr. F. Pitulko, ORP). (9)

5 Dec 1943
HMS H 32 (Lt. K.S. Renshaw, DSC, RNR) conducted A/S exercises off Lough Foyle with HMS Towy (Cdr. M.J Evans, OBE, RN), FFS Roselys, ORP Burza (Cdr. F. Pitulko, ORP), HMS Narcissus (T/Lt. G.T.S. Clampitt, RNR) and HMS Orchis (T/Lt. B.W. Harris, RNVR). (10)

5 Dec 1943
HrMs O 10 (Lt.Cdr. A. van Altena, RNN(R)) participated in A/S exercises off Lough Foyle together with HMS Towy (Cdr. M.J Evans, OBE, RN), ORP Burza (Cdr. F. Pitulko, ORP) and FFS Lobelia. (11)

23 Feb 1944
HrMs O 9 (Lt. J.B.M.J. Maas, RNN) participated in A/S exercises off Lough Foyle together with ORP Burza (Lt.Cdr. F. Pitulko) and FFS La Découverte. (12)

23 Feb 1944
HMS H 44 (Lt. P.N. Joyce, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Lough Foyle with FFS Renoncule, FFS Aconit, FFS Roselys, HMS Fowey (A/Lt.Cdr. G.E. Newey, RNR) and ORP Burza (Lt.Cdr. F. Pitulko). (13)

Media links


Destroyers of World War Two

Whitley, M. J.

Sources

  1. Personal communication
  2. ADM 199/376
  3. ADM 53/112888
  4. ADM 187/10 + ADM 199/372
  5. ADM 53/113124
  6. ADM 173/18199
  7. ADM 173/17786
  8. ADM 199/632
  9. ADM 173/18129
  10. ADM 173/17777
  11. File 2.12.03.6384 (Dutch Archives, The Hague, Netherlands)
  12. File 2.12.03.6372 (Dutch Archives, The Hague, Netherlands)
  13. ADM 173/18513

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


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