Allied Warships

HMS Atheling (D 51)

Escort Carrier of the Ameer class

Photo courtesy of Allan C. Green Collection

NavyThe Royal Navy
TypeEscort Carrier
PennantD 51 
Built bySeattle-Tacoma Shipbuilding Corp. (Seattle, Washington, U.S.A.) 
Laid down9 Jun 1942 
Launched7 Sep 1942 
Commissioned1 Aug 1943 
End service13 Dec 1946 

Decommissioned for transfer to the R.N. on 31 July 1943.
Transferred to the R.N. and commissioned in R.N. service as HMS Atheling on 1 August 1943.
Returned to the U.S.N on 13 December 1946.
Stricken on 7 February 1947.
Sold into merchantile service being renamed Roma.
Scrapped in Italy in November 1967.

Former nameUSS Glacier

Commands listed for HMS Atheling (D 51)

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1Capt. Ronald Ian Agnew, OBE, RCNJun 1943Jul 1944
2A/Cdr. Henry Lewis Oliver, RNJul 1944Oct 1945 ?

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Notable events involving Atheling include:

10 Jun 1944

Operation Councillor.

Simulated raid towards the Sabang area to give the enemy the impression that an air attack on Sabang was to take place in the morning of June 12th.

This operation took place at the same time as US operations in the Marianas.

On 10 June 'Force 68' departed Trincomalee. For this occasion 'Force 68' was made up of the following warships: aircraft carrier HMS Illustrious (Capt. C.E. Lambe, CB, CVO, RN, flying the flag of Rear-Admiral C. Moody, CB, RN), escort carrier HMS Atheling (Capt. R.I. Agnew, OBE, RCN), light cruisers HMS Ceylon (Capt. G.B. Amery-Parkes, RN), HMNZS Gambia (Capt. N.J.W. William-Powlett, DSC, RN), HMS Phoebe (Capt. C.P. Frend, RN) and the destroyers HMS Quilliam (Capt. R.G. Onslow, DSO and 2 Bars, RN), HMS Quality (Lt.Cdr. the Viscount Jocelyn, RN), HMS Racehorse (Cdr. J.J. Casement, DSC, RN), HMS Rapid (Lt.Cdr. M.W. Tomkinson, DSC and Bar, RN) and HMS Relentless (Lt.Cdr. R.A. Fell, RN).

In order not to have to approach the coast to much the submarine Surf transmitted a signal by W/T in the evening of June 11th to simulate that the force was closing Sabang.

Flying practices were carried out throughout. On 11 June two aircraft from HMS Illustrious were lost due to accidents.

The whole force returned to Trincomalee in the afternoon of 13 June. (1)


  1. ADM 199/1388

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

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