Allied Warships

HMS Ophelia (T 05)

MS Trawler of the Shakespearian class

NavyThe Royal Navy
TypeMS Trawler
ClassShakespearian 
PennantT 05 
Built byGoole Shipbuilding & Repairing Co. Ltd. (Goole, U.K.) : Amos & Smith 
Ordered12 Dec 1939 
Laid down1 Apr 1940 
Launched3 Sep 1940 
Commissioned2 Dec 1940 
End service 
HistorySold in 1946.

 

Commands listed for HMS Ophelia (T 05)

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

CommanderFromTo
1S Bennett, RNVRNov 194020 Dec 1941
2T/Lt. Allen James Southgate, RNR20 Dec 1941late 1942
3T/Lt. John Parker Dickinson, RNVRlate 194216 Nov 1942
4T/Lt. Alfred Edward Bird, RNVR16 Nov 194228 Sep 1943
5T/Lt. Donald James Duncan, RNVR28 Sep 194323 Nov 1945

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Notable events involving Ophelia include:


19 Jun 1941
HrMs O 14 (Lt.Cdr. G. Quint, RNN(R)) departs Scapa Flow for Dundee where she arrived later on the same day. she made the trip with the M/S trawler HMS Ophelia (T/Lt. S. Bennett, RNVR) as escort. (1)

21 Aug 1941

Operation (Convoy) Dervish

Departed Hvalfjord for Northern Russia on 21 August 1941. It had been intended to proceed to Murmansk but due to German air attacks on this city the convoy was diverted to Archangelsk where it arrived on 31 August 1941.

On departure from Hvalfjord the convoy was made up of the following merchant vessels; Alchiba (Dutch, 4427 GRT, built 1920), Esneh (British, 1931 GRT, built 1919), Lancastrian Prince (British, 1914 GRT, built 1940), Llanstephan Castle (British, 11348 GRT, built 1914), New Westminster City (British, 4747 GRT, built 1929) and Trehata (British, 4817 GRT, built 1928).

The Royal Fleet Auxiliary tanker Aldersdale (8402 GRT, built 1937) was also part of the convoy.

On departure from Hvalfjord the convoy was escorted by the destroyers HMS Electra (Cdr. C.W. May, RN), HMS Impulsive (Lt.Cdr. W.S. Thomas, DSC, RN), HMS Active (Lt.Cdr. M.W. Tomkinson, RN), minesweepers HMS Harrier (Cdr. E.P. Hinton, MVO, DSO, RN), HMS Halcyon (T/A/Lt.Cdr. H. Harding, RNR), HMS Salamander (Lt.Cdr. W.A. Cooke, RN) and the M/S trawlers HMS Hamlet (T/Lt. H.H. Bolton, RNVR), HMS Macbeth (T/Lt. R.M. Thorne, RNR) and HMS Ophelia (T/Lt. S. Bennett, RNVR).

On 29 August the three destroyers and the RFA tanker were detached from the convoy to proceed to Spitsbergen.

The convoy arrived safely at Archangelsk on 31 August 1941 not having been detected by the Germans.

Distant cover for this convoy was provided by ' Force M '. This force departed Scapa Flow around 1530A/23 and was made up of the aircraft carrier HMS Victorious (Capt. H.C. Bovell, CBE, RN), heavy cruisers HMS Devonshire (Capt. R.D. Oliver, DSC, RN, flying the flag of Rear-Admiral W.F. Wake-Walker CB, OBE, RN), HMS Suffolk (Capt. R.M. Ellis, RN) and the destroyers HMS Inglefield (Capt. P. Todd, DSO, RN), HMS Escapade (Lt.Cdr. E.N.V. Currey, DSC, RN) and HMS Eclipse (Lt.Cdr. I.T. Clark, RN).

Between 1230A/26 and 1430A/26, HMS Inglefield fuelled from HMS Suffolk. Between 1500A/26 and 1605A/26, HMS Escapade fuelled from HMS Devonshire.

' Force M ' arrived at Spitsbergen to refuel from the Aldersdale around 0045A/1. ' Force M ' departed again 0200A/2 to provide cover for other operations.

28 Sep 1941

Convoy QP 1.

This convoy departed Archangelsk on 28 September 1941 and was dispersed off the Orkney Islands on 10 October 1941.

The convoy was made up of the following merchant vessels; Alchiba (Dutch, 4427 GRT, built 1920), Alma Ata (Russian, 3611 GRT, built 1920), Budenni (Russian, 2482 GRT, built 1923), Esneh (British, 1931 GRT, built 1919), Lancastrian Prince (British, 1914 GRT, built 1940), Llanstephan Castle (British, 11340 GRT, built 1914), Mossovet (British, 2981 GRT, built 1935), New Westminster City (British, 4747 GRT, built 1929), Rodina (British, 4441 GRT, built 1922), Sevzaples (British, 3974 GRT, built 1932), Stary Bolshevik (Russian, 3974 GRT, built 1933), Sukhona (Russian, 3124 GRT, built 1918) and Trehata (British, 4817 GRT, built 1928).

On departure from Northern Russia the convoy was escorted by the heavy cruiser HMS London (Capt. R.M. Servaes, CBE, RN), destroyers HMS Electra (Cdr. C.W. May, RN), HMS Active (Lt.Cdr. M.W. Tomkinson, RN), mineseepers HMS Harrier (Cdr. E.P. Hinton, MVO, DSO, RN), HMS Halcyon (T/A/Lt.Cdr. H. Harding, RNR), HMS Salamander (Lt.Cdr. W.A. Cooke, RN), M/S trawlers HMS Hamlet (T/Lt. H.H. Bolton, RNVR), HMS Macbeth (T/Lt. R.M. Thorne, RNR) and HMS Ophelia (T/Lt. S. Bennett, RNVR).

Around 1300C/30, HMS Harrier, HMS Halcyon and HMS Salamander parted company.

Around 1425C/2, HMS London parted company with the convoy and the heavy cruiser HMS Shropshire (Capt. J.T. Borrett, OBE, RN) joined the convoy. HMS London then set course to return to Archangelsk where she was to re-embark the Anglo-American delegation she had disembarked there on 27 September.

Around 2300A/4, the RFA tanker Black Ranger (3417 GRT, built 1941) escorted by the destroyer HMS Anthony (Lt.Cdr. J.M. Hodges, RN) joined the convoy having parted company with eastbound convoy PQ 1.

In the morning of 5 October, HMS Active fuelled from the Black Ranger.

In the late afternoon of 5 October, HMS Anthony fuelled from HMS London.

At 1800A/7, HMS Active took the M/S trawler HMS Ophelia in tow as her engine had broken down. Course was set for Seidisfjord but this was later changed for Akureyi where they arrived on 10 October.

HMS Shorpshire parted company with the convoy around 1900A/10 to proceed to Scapa Flow where she arrived around 0015A/11.

The convoy was dispersed off Dunnet Head around 0830A/11 and most ships joined a coastal convoy.

Meanwhile HMS Anthony had parted company with the convoy with the Black Ranger and the Llanstephan Castle. They arrived at Scapa Flow around 0900A/11.

HMS Electra arrived at Scapa Flow around 1030A/11.

(2)

20 Oct 1943
HMS Uther (Lt. P.S. Beale, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Scapa Flow with HMS Urchin (Lt.Cdr. J.T.B. Birch, DSO, DSC, RN) and HMS Ophelia (T/Lt. D.J. Duncan, RNVR). (3)

28 Jun 1944
HMS Supreme (Lt. T.E. Barlow, RN) conducted A/S exercises with HMS Ophelia (T/Lt. D.J. Duncan, RNVR) and HMS Hazel (T/Lt. J.J. Good, RNR). (4)

Sources

  1. File 2.12.03.6387 (Dutch Archives, The Hague, Netherlands)
  2. ADM 53/114559 + ADM 53/114560 + ADM 53/115078 + ADM 199/399 + ADM 199/409
  3. ADM 173/18397
  4. ADM 173/18891

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


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