Allied Warships

HMS Transylvania (F 56)

Armed Merchant Cruiser

NavyThe Royal Navy
TypeArmed Merchant Cruiser
Class[No specific class] 
PennantF 56 
Built byFairfield Shipbuilding & Engineering Co. (Govan, Scotland) 
Ordered 
Laid down 
Launched11 Mar 1925 
Commissioned5 Oct 1939 
Lost10 Aug 1940 
Loss position55° 50'N, 8° 03'W
History

In August 1939 the passenger ship Transylvania of the Anchor Line (Henderson Bros) Ltd, Glasgow was requisitioned by the Admiralty and converted to an armed merchant cruiser. Conversion was completed on 5 October 1939.

Displacement: 16923 BRT
Armament: 8x 152mm, 2x 76mm
Speed: 15.5 knots

Career:
October 39 - August 40: Northern Patrol

At 01.00 hours on 10 August 1940, HMS Transylvania (Capt. Francis Nigel Miles, OBE, (retired), RN) was hit aft of the stack by one G7e torpedo from U-56 about 40 nautical miles northwest of Malin Head, Donegal in position 55º50'N, 08º03'W. The ship of the 10th Cruiser Squadron on Northern Patrol had been spotted by the U-boat only 15 minutes before and the Germans had to left her behind because they had no torpedoes left. The disabled vessel was taken in tow but later foundered, while nearby trawlers rescued about 300 officers and ratings.

 

Hit by U-boat
Sunk on 10 Aug 1940 by U-56 (Harms).

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

Commands listed for HMS Transylvania (F 56)

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CommanderFromTo
1Capt. (retired) Francis Nigel Miles, RN2 Sep 193910 Aug 1940

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Notable events involving Transylvania include:


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.

23 Oct 1939
The German merchant Bianca (1375 GRT) is intercepted and captured in the Denmark Strait in position 67°29'N, 22°15'W by the British armed merchant cruiser HMS Transylvania (Capt. F.N. Miles, OBE, RN).

21 Nov 1939
The German merchant Tenerife (4996 GRT) is intercepted of the south coast of Iceland in position 62°55'N, 20°00'W by the British armed merchant cruiser HMS Transylvania (Capt. F.N. Miles, OBE, RN). However before the German ship can be captured she is scuttled by her own crew.

28 Mar 1940
HMS Transylvania (Capt. F.N. Miles, OBE, RN) intercepts the German merchant Mimi Horn (4007 GRT) in the Denmark Strait. However before the German ship can be captured she is scuttled by her own crew.


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