Ships hit by U-boats

HMS Southern Prince (M 47)

British Auxiliary minelayer

Photo from Imperial War Museum (IWM), A-9986

NameHMS Southern Prince (M 47)
Type:Auxiliary minelayer
Tonnage10,917 tons
Completed1929 - Lithgows Ltd, Port Glasgow 
OwnerThe Admiralty 
Date of attack26 Aug 1941Nationality:      British
FateDamaged by U-652 (Georg-Werner Fraatz)
Position62° 55'N, 9° 55'W - Grid AE 9185
Complement? men (0 dead and ? survivors).

Completed in August 1929 as motor passenger ship Southern Prince for Furness, Withy & Co Ltd, Liverpool (Prince Line, used in the New York - Argentina service). On 19 Dec 1939, the ship was requisitioned by the Admiralty and converted to the auxiliary minelayer HMS Southern Prince (M 47). On 15 Jun 1940, the ship was commissioned and joined the 1st Minelaying Squadron. She laid a mine barrage across the Northern Approaches and was the headquarters ship of Rear-Admiral Rivett-Carnet during Operation Neptune, the naval part of the landings in the Normandy. On 7 Jun 1944, HMS Southern Prince had left the Solent in convoy EWP-1 and anchored off Juno beach on the following day. After October 1944, she was used as accommodation ship and ended the war as a fleet training ship in the Pacific. 1945 returned to owner.

On 1 Apr 1947 sold to Italy, renamed Anna C. for G. Costa fu Andrea, Genoa and entered service on the Italy-South America route in March 1948. In 1951/52 the ship was re-engined and the accommodation was upgraded for cruise voyages. After a serious fire in 1971, she was sold for scrap and broken up at La Spezia the following year.

Notes on event

At 00.44 hours on 26 Aug 1941, U-652 fired a spread of three torpedoes at a convoy running south-southeast and observed one hit near the bridge on a motor vessel, which stopped shortly thereafter and was missed by a coup de grĂ¢ce at 00.53 hours. HMS Southern Prince (M 47) (A/Capt John Creswell, RN) was not in a mercantile convoy but part of a minelaying task force which was returning from laying the minefield SN-70A in the Northern Barrage.

HMS Lightning (G 55) (Cdr R.G. Stewart, RN) and HMS Lamerton (L 88) (LtCdr H.C. Simms, RN) left Scapa Flow to assist the torpedoed ship and escorted her to the Minches. She was repaired at Belfast and returned to service.

More infoMore on this vessel 
On boardWe have details of 1 people who were on board

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