Allied Warships

HMS Bridgewater (L 01 / U 01)

Sloop of the Bridgewater class

NavyThe Royal Navy
TypeSloop
ClassBridgewater 
PennantL 01 / U 01 
Built byHawthorn Leslie & Co. (Hebburn-on-Tyne, U.K.) 
Ordered19 Sep 1927 
Laid down6 Feb 1928 
Launched14 Sep 1928 
Commissioned14 Mar 1929 
End service 
History

In March 1935 HMS Bridgewater was based on the Cape Station and was first docked in the Selborne dry dock at Simonstown, South Africa on the 18th of this month. She often used the facilities provided at Simonstown prior to the outbreak of war.

In September 1940, HMS Bridgewater in company with HMS Milford were summoned from the South Atlantic to proceed to Freetown and then on to the Mediterranean, to team up with the fleet involved in operation \"Menace\". This was the plan to prevent the Vichy French fleet from entering Dakar. British naval forces attacked Dakar to prepare a landing by the Free French troops. Bridgewater and Milford formed part of the British unit, with Vice Admiral Cunningham in overall charge.

On New Years Day 1942 convoy WS-14 arrived in South Africa from the U.K. with reinforcements. The convoy consisted of 18 ships. Bridgewater in company with the light cruiser HMS Ceres were responsible for the escorting of this convoy. On 19 March convoy WS-16 arrived in South Africa from the U.K. with reinforcements. The convoy consisted of 14 ships and HMS Bridgewater assisted with the escorting of this convoy.

In September 1943 HMS Bridgewater was serving in the Atlantic in company with Milford and formed a unit of the 40th escort group, involved in escorting convoys on the U.K. - Gibraltar route and was based at Freetown.

On 22 May 1947 Bridgewater was sold to Howells, Gelleswick Bay for breaking up.

 

Commands listed for HMS Bridgewater (L 01 / U 01)

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CommanderFromTo
1Cdr. Roy Carlton Harry, RN2 Jun 193915 Jul 1940
2A/Cdr. (retired) Henry Fawcus Gerrans Leftwich, RN15 Jul 19401 May 1942
3Cdr. (retired) Nelson Ward Hampton Weekes, OBE, RN1 May 1942Nov 1943
4Lt. Peter James Hill Hoare, RNNov 1943Feb 1944
5A/Lt.Cdr. Thomas Aitken Easton, RNVRFeb 1944Feb 1944
6Cdr. (retired) Richard Herbert Mack, RNFeb 1944Feb 1945

7Cdr. (retired) Michael Wentworth Ewart-Wentworth, RN4 Apr 194523 Jun 1945
8Lt.Cdr. David Drummond Bone, RN23 Jun 1945early 1946

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Notable events involving Bridgewater include:


5 Mar 1940
HMS Kelt (Skr. W.McK. Smith, RNR), while returning from the 'outer patrol' to Freetown, obtained an A/S contact. HMS Spaniard (Lt.Cdr. F.J. Webster, RNR), which was on the 'inner patrol' came to assist. Depth charge attacks were carried out by the trawlers. HMS Dainty (Cdr. M.S. Thomas, RN) was sailed from Freetown to assist. Aircraft were also ordered to proceed to the scene as was HMS Bridgewater (Cdr. R.C. Harry, RN) from the 'outer patrol'. (1)

23 Sep 1940

Operations Menace, the attack on Dakar, 23-24 September 1940.


Part II, the actual attack.

General intentions.

By 20 September the attack force was assembled at Freetown. It was made up of the following warships; battleships HMS Barham (Capt G.C. Cooke, RN, flying the flag of Vice-Admiral J.H.D. Cunningham, CB, MVO, RN), HMS Resolution (Capt. O. Bevir, RN), aircraft carrier HMS Ark Royal (Capt. C.S. Holland, RN), heavy cruisers HMS Cumberland (Capt. G.H.E. Russell, RN), HMS Cornwall (Capt. C.F. Hammill, RN) (detached), HMAS Australia (Capt. R.S. Stewart, RN), light cruisers HMS Delhi (Capt. A.S. Russell, RN) (detached) and HMS Dragon (Capt. R.W. Shaw, MBE, RN), destroyers HMS Echo (Cdr. S.H.K. Spurgeon, DSO, RAN), HMS Eclipse (Lt.Cdr. I.T. Clark, RN) and HMS Escapade (Cdr. H.R. Graham, DSO, RN), HMS Faulknor (Capt. A.F. de Salis, RN), HMS Forester (Lt.Cdr. E.B. Tancock, RN), HMS Foresight (Lt.Cdr. G.T. Lambert, RN), HMS Fortune (Cdr. E.A. Gibbs, DSO, RN), HMS Fury (Lt.Cdr. T.C. Robinson, RN) and HMS Greyhound (Cdr. W.R. Marshall A'Deane, DSO, DSC, RN) and HMS Inglefield (Capt. P. Todd, DSO, RN), sloops HMS Bridgewater (A/Cdr. (Retd.) H.F.G. Leftwich, RN), HMS Milford, Savorgnan de Brazza (Free French, Lt.Cdr. A. Roux), Commandant Dominé (Free French, Lt. J.P.Y. de la Porte des Vaux) and Commandant Duboc (Free French, Lt.Cdr. M.A.F. Bourgine) , auxiliary patrol vessel Président Houduce (Free French, Lt. L. Deschatres) and the net tender HMS Quannet (T/Lt. C.E. Richardson, RNR).

Vice-Admiral Cunningham then transferred his flag from HMS Devonshire to HMS Barham accompanied by General Irwin and his staff. All was ready for the passage to Dakar but at General de Gaulle request the opening day was deferred to 23 September.

The task force would arrive off Dakar at dawn on 23 September. It would patrol in groups while French airmen would take off in aircraft from HMS Ark Royal and land at Ouakam airfield to endeavour to win over the French air force. British aircraft meanwhile would drop proclamations and announcements of the arrival of de Gaulle on the town of Dakar and the forts.

An hour later, Captain d’Argenlieu would land in a motor boat with a communication from General de Gaulle to the Governor requiring a reply within two hours. The Free French sloops carrying de Gaulle’s troops would approach and, if necessary, force the anti-submarine boom. Meanwhile Vice-Admiral Cunningham’s Force with fighter and anti-submarine patrols would lie off the harbour as follows.

Group A) The two French troopships, Pennland and Westernland, ten miles to the south of Cape Manuel.

Group B) HMS Barham, HMS Resolution and the cruisers, two miles to the seaward of group A.

Group C) The four British troopships, two miles to the seaward of Group B.

Group D) The other transports, six miles to the seaward of Group C.

Group E) HMS Ark Royal further to the seaward.

If there appeared to be a good chance of a favourable reception the Free French sloops would land their troops at one of the wharves while the French troopships made for the harbour.

It was hoped that the forts would be reluctant to fire on French ships and as soon as de Gaulle was firmly established the British Force would withdraw. If the forts offered serious resistance General de Gaulle would call on Vice-Admiral Cunningham to quell it with a minimum of force. If it was clear that an organised and continuous resistance would be offered and local authorities refused to parley, the Free French ships would withdraw out of range while the British force broke down resistance and landed troops to capture the town and its defences.

The possible contingencies would be referred to as situation ‘Happy’, ‘Sticky’ or ‘Nasty’ according to events. ‘Happy’ would mean a favourable reception and unopposed landing. ‘Sticky’ would mean resistance of a formal or sporadic nature. ‘Nasty’ would mean serious resistance. HM ships then would move in to engage the forts, and British troops would prepare to land.

Commencement of operations.

The forces left Freetown in three groups;

Group I consisted of the five transports escorted by HMS Bridgewater, HMS Quannet and President Houduce. It had already left Freetown on the 19th of September.

Group II consisted of the French troopships Pennland and Westernland, the food ship Belgravian and the three Free French sloops and also of the British troopships Ettrick, Karanja, Kenya and Sobieski escorted by HMS Devonshire, HMS Faulknor, HMS Forester, HMS Fury and HMS Milford (Capt.(Retd.) S.K. Smyth, RN). This group departed Freetown at 0600/21.

Group III consisted of HMS Barham, HMS Resolution, HMS Ark Royal, HMS Inglefield, HMS Greyhound, HMS Foresight, HMS Fortune, HMS Echo and HMS Escapade. This group departed Freetown at 0900/21. Early the next day this group was joined by HMS Cumberland, HMAS Australia and HMS Dragon.

The weather was fine and the sea was calm. Passage north to Dakar was uneventful. Aircraft from the Ark Royal conducted photographic reconnaissance on the 22nd.

At Dakar there were the following French warships; the uncompleted battleship Richelieu, the light cruisers Georges Leygues and Montcalm, the destroyers Le Fantasque, Le Malin, L’Audacieux and Le Hardi, three submarines Ajax, Perseé and Bévéziers (this last one was in dock) and some smaller vessels.

Zero hour for the commencement of the attack was set at 0550/23 and all ships managed to get into their assigned positions at that time. Visibility was however very poor due to mist, and was no more then 3 to 5 nautical miles. The fog was expected to clear during the day but in fact the opposite happened and visibility decreased steadily during the day. The shore was rarely sighted.

During the forenoon, the warships and transports patrolled up and down. Punctually at daybreak (0505 hours), HMS Ark Royal, then some 25 nautical miles from Dakar, flew off five aircraft most of which were manned by Free French flying officers. Two of these aircraft landed safely at Ouakam airfield at 0554 hours. Within 10 minutes a signal was displayed indicating ‘success’. This however proved to be premature. At 0608 hours a third aircraft landed on the airfield. Disembarked her three passengers and then took off without much interference. Two minutes later the ‘success’ signal was removed and a fourth aircraft broke off her attempt to land. Nothing more was heard from the Free French officers that had been landed. Two fighters were then seen to take off and they chased away the three remaining aircraft together with AA fire from the Richelieu and from the battery on Gorée Island. The attempt to win over the airfield had failed.

HMS Barham had sighted the Westernland at 0600 hours and Vice-Admiral Cunningham had sent a message of goodwill to General de Gaulle. The Free French sloop Savorgnan de Brazza was of the boom at 0555 hours and her two motor boats, with Captain d’Argenlieu and the Generals other emissaries were on their way to the boom gate at 0605 hours. The gate was open and at 0640 hours they were entering the harbour.

Visibility was poor, and the Savorgnan de Brazza took station of the boom to keep the boats in sight. The emissaries landed and encountered a hot reception. They were fired on and wounded in resisting an attempt to arrest them, but managed to re-embark and withdraw under fire. A blank round was fired at the Savorgnan de Brazza at 0745 hours followed by three salvoes, which fell astern. Just then the motor boats were sighted and at 0750 hours Captain d’Argenlieu sent a signal that he had met serious resistance. This reached Vice-Admiral Cunningham at 0807 hours. The other French sloops were to be at the boom at 0905 hours to pass it (or force it if needed) and land their troops. If the reception had been favourable the French troopships were then to enter the harbour to disembark the main body of troops. The Commandant Dominé and Commandant Duboc were actually at the boom at 0805 hours, one hour early. They encountered no opposition until they approached the mole. They were taken under fire with heavy machine guns and were ordered to stop. The Richelieu fired a blank round and then opened fire with small guns. Both sloops then turned for the gate under the cover of a smoke screen. Also the guns from the Gorée Island battery were joining in. At 0820 hours the Commandant Dominé and Commandant Duboc were sighted by the Savorgnan de Brazza which was intended to lead them in at 0905 hours. The sloops had not expected such a hostile reception and retired on the British Fleet which was sighted a 0900 hours.

Meanwhile HMS Barham at 0706 hours had turned north-north-west towards the land, and at 0740 hours Cape Manuel was in sight some 5 nautical miles away. At 0827 hours, with the land still just visible from HMS Barham Vice-Admiral Cunningham asked General de Gaulle whether he wished the British ships to close the shore and show themselves at the risk of being fired on. Five minutes later came the signal ‘proposals rejected’. At 0840 hours General de Gaulle signalled that the Richelieu and Gorée Island guns had been firing and that he had ordered his own ships to make a determined effort; if they failed he suggested that the Vice-Admiral should show himself of Dakar. Just then, one minute later, came the signal from the Savorgnan de Brazza confirming the emissary’s proposals had been rejected.

Situation deteriorates.

It was clear by this time an unfavourable situation was rapidly developing. General de Gaulle’s proposals to the Governor had been rejected and two of his emissaries had been seriously wounded, his sloops had been fired upon and the Vichy French ships in the harbour were raising steam. In spite of these manifest tokens of hostility the General apparently still hoped for a peaceful solution. At 0905 hours, however, Vice-Admiral Cunningham warned his force that the situation was developing towards ‘Sticky’.

Valuable and comprehensive reports were coming in from the British aircraft reconnoitring Dakar. Although these aircraft were fired on by all the French ships in the harbour and by machine guns on the jetty, Vice-Admiral Cunningham gave orders that a French flying boat over the fleet should not be attaked, for there still seemed to be hopeful signs that the French air force might join de Gaulle. At 0948 hours a signal arrived from HMS Ark Royal to say that one of the Gloire class cruisers had slipped. The Vice-Admiral at once instructed HMS Foresight, the northern destroyer of the anti-submarine screen, to order any French cruiser sighted to return to harbour. At 1005 hours, however, the shore batteries opened fire on HMS Foresight and the Vice-Admiral ordered her to withdraw following this with a signal to HMS Ark Royal to stand by with six aircraft to bomb Gorée Island. He also warned the French Admiral that if the fire were continued he would regretfully be compelled to return it. The French Admiral replied that if Vice-Admiral Cunningham did not wish him to fire he should remove himself more then 20 nautical miles from Dakar. Meanwhile the force had turned westwards at 1016 hours. Two minutes later Vice-Admiral Cunningham detached HMAS Australia to examine a ship reported to the north. At 1025 hours, HMAS Australia, identified two Le Fantasque class destroyers steering westwards and ordered them to return to harbour, backing up this order with a warning shot. They at once turned back and the Australia then resumed her place in line after having been fired upon by shore guns.

At 1030 hours, two La Galissonnière class cruisers were reported leaving Dakar and Vice-Admiral Cunningham at once informed the French that if their ships left the harbour he would use force to compel their return. Two French submarines were also reported to be underway and at 1050 hours Vice-Admiral Cunningham warned the French Admiral that if they left Dakar harbour he would attack them. One minute later a report came in that the submarines were passing the entrance and when a torpedo missed HMS Foresight Vice-Admiral Cunningham cancelled the order for HMS Ark Royal to bomb Gorée Island but to bomb the submarines instead. At the same time he detached HMS Inglefield and HMS Foresight to attack them and he also turned the remained of the force to close Gorée Island to support them. Almost immediately HMS Foresight came under fire and at 1051 hours she was hit forward by a shell. Thus the actual first hit was made by the French.

By 1100 hours the whole force was under fire from the guns at Cape Manuel. HMS Inglefield reported also being missed by a torpedo. Two minutes later HMS Inglefield and HMS Foresight were were engaging one of the submarines (the Perseé) on the surface to the north-westward. Events followed rapidly. HMS Inglefield was hit by a shore battery. By 1104 hours the submarine was sighted on the Barham’s port bow. She was engaged by the 6” guns from HMS Barham, HMS Resolution and HMS Dragon. She was badly hit and soon abandoned by her crew, finally sinking at 1137 hours in position 065°, Cape Manuel lighthouse, 2740 yards. Simultaneously HMS Barham fired five 15” gun salvoes at the Cape Manuel battery but accordingly to a subsequent French broadcast they caused heavy civilian casualties ashore.

When the force turned back to the south-westwards at 1107 hours, HMS Inglefield was again hit aft by a shore battery. With HMS Foresight she engaged the second submarine (the Ajax) which at once made for the harbour entrance, and Vice-Admiral Cunningham, still hoping for a peaceful solution, and in accordance with the agreement to use no more force then necessary to overcome sporadic resistance, ordered the force to cease fire.

At 1119 hours however, HMS Dragon, ordered to attack the second submarine, came under fire from the guns at Cape Manuel. The whole force at once turned west but though the land was barely visible through the mist, HMS Foresight and HMS Cumberland, which were close to HMS Barham were hit almost immediately by the shore guns. The damage to HMS Cumberland was serious. She was struck by what was thought to be an 11.2” shell (actually it was a 9.4” shell) just above the armour belt on the port side. The engine rooms became temporary untendable and she was forced to withdraw, taking no further part in the operation. Nothing further was to be gained by remaining close inshore and at 1135 hours the force turned to the southward.

At 1154 hours a signal from the High Commissioner, French West Africa was received stating ‘We confirm that we will oppose all landings, you have taken the initiative in causing French blood to flow’. The situation at noon was thus far from hopeful but it was decided a final attempt to land the Free French troops at Rufisque would be undertaken (operation ‘Charles’).

Situation ‘Sticky’.

Operation ‘Charles’ was to be a final attempt for a peaceful landing of the Free French troops at Rufisque Bay before beginning a systematic reduction of the Dakar defences as a preliminary to a British landing.

It was considered essential in this plan to maintain the French character of the landing as far as possible; the Free French transports were to be accompanied as far as possible by their own warships, and by two British destroyers only, HMS Inglefield and HMS Forester, which would lead them in and, if necessary, provide flanking fire.

At 1158 hours, Vice-Admiral Cunningham signalled to de Gaulle, ‘what about operation ‘Charles’ now ?’. The General replied at 1212 hours that he desired to to ahead with operation ‘Charles’ but that he required the latest reports. He was then given the latest aircraft reports, which showed no surface ships outside the boom. A zero hour for ‘Charles’ was then set at 1530 hours if the Generals ships could reach Rufisque Bay in time. A signal was sent to the entire force that the situation was now ‘Sticky’.

General de Gaulle then asked Vice-Admiral Cunningham what opposition might be expected from shore batteries and the Vice-Admiral replied that the bad visibility would help the forces taking part in ‘Operation Charles’. At 1335 hours HMS Barham proceeded westwards to endeavour to locate the General’s flagship the Westernland but she could not be found. HMS Barham then spent three hours searching for her in the mist.

A baffling phase of uncertainty followed. In the thick weather which precluded visual signalling between Barham and Westernland radio telephony and wireless communication between Vice-Admiral Cunningham and General de Gaulle, though at first satisfactory, deteriorated progressively during the afternoon. This was due to jamming of radio telephony by a heavy traffic of military signals between the Westernland herself and the Free French sloops. At the root of the trouble was the fact that General de Gaulle was in a separate ship. Everything possible had been done to improvise additional lines of communication, but these proved inadequate to meet the situation. For some three hours that afternoon all contact was lost with General de Gaulle and the French transports.

At 1358 hours Vice-Admiral Cunningham informed the Admiralty that de Gaulle was attempting a landing but at 1445 hours a signal was received from de Gaulle to say that he was awaiting instructions to which the Vice-Admiral replied at 1504 hours ‘carry out Charles, report zero hour’.

But to carry out ‘Charles’, however, HMS Inglefield and HMS Forester had to get in touch with the French transports, and despite repeated calls for their positions no one knew where they were.

An ultimatum was made ready to be sent to the authorities and people of Dakar informing them that failing to accept General de Gaulle proposals, the British fleet would open fire on the fortifications of Dakar. This was misunderstood by General de Gaulle and he thought that the ultimatum had already been delivered so he suspended ‘Operation Charles’. Troops would not be landed by the transports but only a smaller number would be landed by the French sloops. Vice-Admiral Cunningham was only informed about this after two hours.

Meanwhile further complications had arisen. Aircraft reported a French destroyer off Gorée Island (this was the L’Audacieux), threatening the approach to Rufisque Bay. HMAS Australia, HMS Fury and HMS Greyhound were detached at 1608 hours to ward her off. The French destroyer was engaged and set on fire after she had fired two torpedoes at HMAS Australia.

Around 1630 hours HMS Devonshire finally sighted the French transports some 20 nautical miles from Rufisque Bay. This meant that ‘Charles’ could not be completed before dark. These was at least one enemy submarine (possibly two) in the area. In these weather conditions it was not though possible to give sufficient protection to the transports in Rufisque Bay. On these grounds Vice-Admiral Cunningham cancelled ‘Operation Charles’ at 1642 hours.

Two minutes later an air report reached him reporting two La Galissonniere class cruisers three nautical miles north-north-east of Gorée Island which were steering towards Rufisque Bay at 17 knots. Vice-Admiral Cunningham at once turned the battleships towards Rufisque to cover the Westernland and Pennland in case they were still making for it. He held this course until 1710 hours and then altered to the southward to regain contact with the British transports. A signal timed 1635 hours from General de Gaulle that he expected to arrive at 1650 hours, which would be zero hour, reached Vice-Admiral Cunningham at 1720 hours. Actually at that moment the Free French sloops, having parted from the French transports at 1648 hours reached Rufisque Bay. It is not clear how they were missed by the Vichy cruisers, which and air report placed, together with a large destroyer, two nautical miles were of Rufisque at 1740 hours. This was the last air report, for at 1745 hours weather conditions obliged HMS Ark Royal to withdraw all reconnaissance aircraft. It did not reach Vice-Admiral Cunningham until 1835 hours.

Meanwhile at 1805 hours, General de Gaulle’s signal timed 1620 hours had at last arrived and the Vice-Admiral knew that the Free French sloops would probably be attempting a landing. He immediately sent off HMS Inglefield and HMS Forester, which found the Westernland in position 155°, Rufisque Bay, 10 nautical miles at 1835 hours.

Free French sloops at Rufisque, 23 September 1940.

As mentioned previously the Free French sloops parted company with the Westernland and Pennland at 1648 hours some 7.5 nautical miles from Rufisque to carry out ‘their mission’. There seemed to be considerable doubt as to what this mission was. It certainly was not ‘Operation Charles’ as had been intended. The landing party in each sloop consisted of about 60 ‘fusilier marines’, making it about 180 in total. They arrived off Rusfisque at 1720 hours. The Savornan de Brazza, whose draught was greater then the other two, anchored about 500 yards from the shore. The Commandant Dominé and Commandant Duboc pushed in right towards the jetty, and all three lowered their boats. Fire was almost immediately opened on the Commandant Duboc by a 4” gun in a blockhouse at Cap de Biches. She was hit and one officer was killed and three men seriously wounded. Fire was opened by the sloops and the battery was knocked out. The Commandant Duboc then retired behind a smoke screen. Two of the Savorgnan de Brazza’s motor boats towing whalers were making for the beach to the right of the jetty. When within 300 yards from the shore they met with heavy machine gun fire and stopped, while the Commandant Dominé, covering them, opened fire on the shore emplacements, but could not locate them in the failing light and mist. But then at 1758 hours a signal was received from the Westernland cancelling ‘Operation Charles’. The landing parties were then re-embarked and at 1838 hours the three Free French sloops left for their patrol line.

Situation ‘Nasty’.

The day was drawing to a close. All hopes of a friendly reception had been scattered. The ships were lying in a fog off a hostile coast with submarines in the vicinity. Vice-Admiral Cunningham and General Irwin considered landing British forces at Rufisque, but decided against it.

At 1910/23, while the Free French sloops were closing the Westernland and Pennland, Vice-Admiral Cunningham with the ‘battlefleet’; HMS Barham, HMS Resolution and HMS Devonshire, turned west to cover the transports (which were still to the southward) for the night.

Ten minutes before, at 1900 hours, the Vichy French Governor General, M. Pierre Boisson, had in a broadcast stated emphatically that Dakar would not submit. There could be no further hope of a peaceful settlement and at 2052 hours General de Gaulle was asked whether he agreed that the situation was now ‘Nasty’ and to the issue of the ultimatum. The Admiralty had been kept fully informed of the situation and at 2105 hours a personal message from the Prime Minister arrived ‘Having begun we must go on to the end, stop at nothing’.

General de Gaulle reply arrived at 22235 hours, he agreed that the situation was now ‘Nasty’ and that the ultimatum should go out. It was broadcast at 2345 hours in French and English to the Admiral, Governor General and people of Dakar. They had prevented General de Gaulle from landing. Dakar might be seized by the Germans / Italians and the Allies were bound to prevent this. Their forces were approaching. The conditions offered must be accepted by 0600/24 or the guns of the Allies would open fire.

The Governor General’s answer reached Vice-Admiral Cunningham at 0400/24. It was an unqualified refusal; ‘I shall defend Dakar to the end’. There was nothing more to be said. At dawn the battlefleet was approaching the coast to take up their bombardment stations.

The attack on Dakar, the attack opens, 24 September 1940.

HMS Ark Royal had orders to carry out a reconnaissance as early as possible backed up by bombing attacks on the Richelieu, Forts Manual and Gorée, and the two light cruisers lying off Dakar.

Visibility had greatly improved since the previous day and was six nautical miles at 0625 hours when the first striking force of six Skua’s of No. 800 Squadron, loaded with 500 lb. S.A.P. bombs, took off from HMS Ark Royal to attack the cruisers and other suitable targets.

At 0703 hours aircraft reported a destroyer damaged off Rufisque, two cruisers in the roads and three destroyers coming slowly out. It was seven minutes later when the Skuas carried out a high level bombing attack on the Richelieu and one of the destroyers. By this time the battlefleet was on its bombardment course and the Barham’s spotting aircraft was in the air. They were followed by six Swordfish of No. 820 Squadron loaded with G.P. bombs for an attack on the town of Dakar, which was to synchronise with the ships bombardment.

It had been calculated that at 0725 hours the battlefleet would be within 16000 yards of the forts and fire could be opened, but unfortunately when the moment arrived nothing could be seen of them in the prevailing mist. A long range bombardment was clearly impractical, and the fleet turned away temporarily in order to re-dispose the cruisers and destroyers for a short range attack. At the same time HMS Fortune was detached to obtain a shore fix, but she came under accurate fire from the forts and her fix proved unreliable.

The Ark Royal’s first Swordfish striking force was diverted to bomb Cape Manuel. At 0800 hours she despatched another striking force of six Swordfish of No. 810 Squadron loaded with S.A.P. bombs to attack the Richelieu. It was hoped that by the time it attacked the Richelieu the opening of the naval bombardment would provide a diversion, but this did not occur; one Swordfish was shot down and two others failed to return.

A diversion was also provided on the enemy’s side. At 0805 hours HMS Fortune, which had rejoined the battlefleet, reported a submarine contact inside the screen and dropped three depth charges. At 0831 hours the Vichy French submarine Ajax surfaced. She was unable to dive or move and surrendered. Her whole crew was rescued before she sank. The Fortune’s boarding party found six ‘tube ready’ light burning, and it was evidently only the destroyers depth charges that saved the fleet from attack.

The incident still further delayed the bombardment and it was not till 0920 hours, forty minutes after the first Swordfish striking force had attacked the Richelieu with S.A.P. bombs, that Gorée Island was sighted. At 0935 hours the shore batteries opened fire and one minute later the Barham and Resolution replied with their 15” guns, firing on the Richelieu at ranges of 13600 to 15000 yards respectively, while the cruisers HMAS Australia and HMS Devonshire engaged a destroyer of the Le Fantasque class.

The first bombardment.

As soon as the British ships opened fire a French destroyer of the Le Fantasque class steamed south laying a smoke screen to the eastward of the anchorage and Gorée Island. The French cruisers inside the boom to the northward, sheltering amongst the many merchant vessels, also made a smoke screen, which drifted slowly south and, combining with the mist and heavy smoke from the vicinity of the Richelieu, eventually obscured all targets.

Shooting became extreme difficult, for range taking was nearly impossible. There were other serious handicaps. HMS Barham, which was newly commissioned after repairs, had never carried out any bombardment practice. Neither battleship had done any concentration firing, and neither had its customary observer in the air.

After engaging the Richelieu for nine minutes the Resolution’s director training gear failed and she shifted fire to the Cape Manuel battery, on which she probably obtained a hit. The Barham’s aircraft reported several straddles across the Richelieu, which was thought to have been hit. The smoke-laying cruiser was still active, and at 0942 hours the Barham’s 6” guns engaged her without success.

Meanwhile the Devonshire and Australia had engaged and damaged a large destroyer of Rufisque which was subsequently engaged by the Inglefield, Foresight and Forester, and left burning.

The fire encountered by the fleet consisted of occasional one- and two-gun salvoes (yellow splash) from the Richelieu’s 15” guns, salvoes of 9.4” from Cape Manuel (white splash), Gorée Island, and an unseen battery, and a number of smaller rounds from the Richelieu and various shore batteries. The French fire was slow but accurate. By 1010 hours the targets were wholly obscured by smoke, and shortly afterward the fleet withdrew to the southward, leaving the Ark Royal to report the result of the bombardment.

As the fleet made to the south, Vichy Glenn-Martin bombers made high level attacks on it without success, though three bombs fell close to HMAS Australia.

At 1141 hours the Ark Royal reported the results of the bombardment; several near misses with bombs on the Richelieu; one near miss with a bomb on a destroyers; one 15” hit on the Cape Manual battery, which had ceased fire; one 15” hit and repeated straddles on the Richelieu; straddles across the cruisers in Hahn Bay, one of which was set on fire aft. No hits had been obtained on the Gorée Island battery.

The second bombardment.

At 1146 hours relief spotting aircraft for the battleships were ordered and targets for a further bombardment at 1315 hours were allocated as follows; the Barham on Richelieu; the Resolution on Goréé Island; the Devonshire on Cape Manuel; the Australia on the cruisers inside the boom. The spotting aircraft took off from HMS Ark Royal at 1220 hours and as a report reached her about this time that Vichy cruisers and destroyers were proceeding towards Rufisque, a torpedo striking force was got ready to attack them immediately after the second bombardment.

French aircraft were still busy. At 1217 hours a French bomber dropped six bombs close to HMS Barham. It was driven off by Skuas. Shortly afterwards a shadowing cruiser was sighted while the fleet was approaching Gorée Island. She was engaged from 14500 yards by the main armament from HMS Barham and HMS Resolution. She then turned away under a smoke screen. Fire was then checked. At 1248 hours, Vice-Admiral Cunningham ordered the Devonshire and Australia to engage her, but cancelled this order five minutes later when his destroyers, which were coming under an accurate fire from shore batteries, were told to take station on his disengaged side. By an unfortunate mischance the first order – to engage the cruiser – never reached the Devonshire and she interpreted Vice-Admiral Cunningham’s second signal ‘cruisers negative engage’, which referred only to the hostile cruiser, as an order to take no further part in the bombardment. Accordingly at 1300 hours she turned away to the east with HMAS Australia and neither ship took part in the subsequent bombardment.

The bombardment was reopened in the afternoon, at 1300 hours HMS Barham obtained a shore fix and turned north-west on her bombardment course. Five minutes later she engaged the Richelieu bearing 330°, range 17000 yards. HMS Resolution opened fire on Gorée Island from 16000 yards. The batteries at Cape Manuel, which had been reported hit, Gorée Island and Dakar Point at once replied. The Richelieu also opened fire with her 15” guns firing two gun salvoes with fair accuracy. She continued firing until her fire was blanked by the mole.

The French gunfire concentrated on the Barham and was heaviest between 1312 and 1320 hours. At 1315 hours an 9.4” projectile hit the Barham. At 1320 hours she was hit again and two minutes later she was hit twice.

The smoke screen tactics of the forenoon were repeated as soon as the British ships were sighted, and by 1311 hours the targets again became obscured. Although spotting aircraft reported that the Barham was straddling the Richelieu, the salvos appeared to be out for line, and apparently the Vichy French battleship was not being hit. The Resolution did not succeed in silencing the main Gorée Island battery and it is doubtful whether she was being spotted on the correct target. She was straddled by several salvoes of 5.4” and 6” shells from the shore batteries. At 1323 hours the Richelieu ceased fire. A minute later HMS Barham and HMS Resolution broke off the attack and at at 1326 hours the shore batteries also ceased firing.

The results of the bombardment were not encouraging. Despite the expenditure of nearly 400 rounds of 15” ammunition, none of the larger shore batteries had been silenced. The Richelieu was still in action, and the position of several 5.4” batteries, whose fire had proven effective against the destroyers, and would be still more so against the transports, had not even been located.

In spite of the poor visibility the fire of the shore batteries had been remarkably accurate and indicated that their fire was directed by listening devices rather then from forward observation posts, from which the battlefleet would generally had been out of sight. French air action had increased considerably since the previous day and the French will to resist appeared unimpaired. A report from HMS Ark Royal stated that the hostile attitude of the French fighters had made it hazardous for her aircraft to operate in the Dakar harbour area.

The question of a landing in force still remained. In these circumstances Vice-Admiral Cunningham decided to consult General de Gaulle and at 1400 hours the Barham withdrew to the southward to meet the Westernland before dark.

Swordfish aircraft attack the French cruisers.

Then minutes later, at 1410 hours, HMS Ark Royal’s striking force of nine Swordfish aircraft of No. 820 and 810 Squadrons took off while a fighter escort of three Skuas to attack the Vichy-French cruisers proceeding towards Rufisque. At 1440 hours the leader was forced down with engine trouble, his crew being picked up by the destroyer HMS Escapade. At 1500 hours the eight remaining Swordfish Swordfish attacked the two La Galissonnière class cruisers and a destroyer in the bay. In the prevailing haze the attack, which was made from an east-south-easterly direction, took the French by surprise. When the first sub-flight came down just outside the anti-submarine nets the three vessels were barely moving, but they immediately put their helms hard over and turned to port at full speed. The Swordfish claimed hits on one of the cruisers and the destroyer but this seemed to be doubtful. One Swordfish was forced down by AA fire on her way back to the Ark Royal. The crew was rescued by the destroyer HMS Echo.

Conference with General de Gaulle.

HMS Barham stopped at 1615 hours. General de Gaulle then came on board to confer with Vice-Admiral Cunningham and General Irwin. General de Gaulle, though deeply distressed and surprised about the nature of the defences, was still confident that the situation in French West Africa would improve as the power of his movement grew stronger. He explained that in view of the determined opposition encountered, and the probable destructive effects of the bombardment, it was imperative, from the point of view from the French opinion, that he should not be closely connected with the destruction and loss of French life, which had presumably taken place, lest his further utility to the common cause should be hopelessly compromised.

Though he would prefer not to use his troops he was prepared, if really needed, to support a British landing regardless of consequences. He considered, however, that a British landing was no longer feasible, and emphasised that a reverse would be a most serious check to the Allied cause.

He blamed himself for undue optimism in underestimating the possibility of a resolute defence, and suggested that the bombardment should be suspended at his direct request and Dakar so informed; that his forces should go to Bathurst for exercises, with a view of a possible advance upon Dakar over land; that British naval action should be taken to cover his passage and prevent the reinforcement and revictualling of Dakar.

General de Gaulle returned to the Westernland at 1800 hours. The situation was considered by Vice-Admiral Cunningham and General Irwin in the light of these proposals. A Swordfish, which had crashed near the Barham at 1830 hours, reported that one cruiser was beached and burning east of Rufisque, one buring in Gorée Bay, and two detroyers were beached in Hann Bay (this information was subsequently found to be incorrect). It was essential to immobilise the Vichy French cruisers and neutralise the main armament of the French forts before attempting a landing. It was decided that the attack on the defences must be renewed the next day if weather conditions were favourable. General de Gaulle and the Admiralty were informed accordingly and dispositions were made for a landing of British troops at Rufisque, to follow up any success obtained by the bombardment.

Final bombardment. HMS Resolution torpedoed.

The next day, 25 September 1940, broke fine and clear with extreme visibility. The Ark Royal at 1531/24 had proposed bombing Ouakam and Gorée at dawn and at 2348/24 was ordered to do so, but owning to wireless congestion, this was not received until 0200/25 when Captain Holland considered it too late. The targets allocated to the battleships and cruisers were the same as for the second bombardment; spotting aircraft, with fighter protection, were to be in position at 0900/25. At 0530 hours three reconnaissance aircraft took off from the Ark Royal, but by 0700 hours, two had been driven back by French fighter patrols. At 0754 hours, HMS Devonshire sighted a submarine submerging some eight nautical miles to the east of the battlefleet, which was then some 25 nautical miles to the south of Dakar. HMS Forester was at once detached to hunt it, leaving only two destroyers to screen the battlefleet.

At 0803 hours they were ordered to withdraw to the disengaged flank as soon as the shore batteries opened fire. The battleships were then steaming towards Gorée Island ready to open fire, with the cruisers three miles away to the east. HMS Resolution had orders to take independent avoiding action if necessary during the bombardment. At 0857 hours a circular buoy was sighted which HMS Barham fired on, suspecting it to be a sound locating device. One minute later the Richelieu opened fire on HMS Barham from a range of 23000 yards.

At 0901 hours the signal to turn to the bombarding course (050°) was hauled down in HMS Barham. It was not only the British which acted on this signal. Captain Lancelot of the Vichy submarine Bévézièrs was watching the approaching battleships though the periscope. Experience with the Royal Navy before the fall of France had taught him our manoeuvring signals. On seeing ‘Blue 7’ hoised, he waited for it to be hauled down; then fired his torpedoes at the turning point. Thus it came about that as the Resolution was turning, five torpedoes were seen approaching her port beam. Already committed to the turn she could only apply full helm in the hope of turning short and combing the tracks. In this she almost succeeded, for three torpedoes passed ahead and another narrowly missed her astern. The fifth, however, struck her on the port side amidships causing serious flooding, but fortunately no loss of life. HMS Barham avoided the three torpedoes that had missed the Resolution ahead and they passed astern, exploding harmlessly on the bottom.

HMS Resolution, which had developed a list of 12° to port, was still able to steam. At 0905 hours HMS Barham opened fire on the Richelieu from 21000 yards and also the cruisers engaged their targets, HMS Devonshire firing on Cape Manuel and HMAS Australia on the French cruisers inside the boom. Fire from the Richelieu and shore batteries was deliberate and accurate; it was concentrated on HMS Barham and frequently straddled her. The British cruisers were also under heavy fire. HMS Barham was hit once and HMAS Australia twice. HMS Resolution was badly damaged and it was necessary for her to withdraw and at 0912 hours HMS Barham turned to cover her. About this time HMS Foresight reported that she had sunk the French submarine with depth charges (but this was not the case). She and HMS Inglefield were then ordered to cover HMS Resolution with a smoke screen. The two cruisers were recalled. About 0918 hours Vichy French fighters shot down the Australia’s Walrus aircraft. HMS Forester was ordered to try to rescue the crew but she came under heavy fire from shore batteries and had to retire.

At 0921 hours, HMS Barham ceased fire and took station close astern of HMS Resolution with HMS Devonshire and HMAS Australia on each quarter. The Ark Royal was ordered to provide maximum fighter protection, and the battlefleet withdrew to the southward.

HMS Resolution was steaming at 10 knots and between 0940 and 0950 hours two high level bombing attacks were made on her, both of them were unsuccessful. The whole force now steered south-west at the best possible speed and by 1134 hours the flagship, HMS Barham had the whole force in sight.

The Vice-Admiral now had to decide whether to continue the attack on Dakar or to withdraw his force. The chance of capturing Dakar was clearly remote and in the end it was decided to discontinue the attack and to withdraw his force to Freetown without further delay. A signal to this effect was made at 1152 hours.

Withdrawal to Freetown.

Before a signal could be passed to the Admiralty a signal was received from the Prime Minister who was aware of the damage to HMS Resolution. Vice-Admiral Cunningham was ordered to abandon the enterprise against Dakar.

By 2000/25, HMS Barham was about 100 nautical miles south of Dakar steering south at 7 knots. The next day the sea was smooth as the weather was fine. HMS Resolution was taken in tow by HMS Barham. On the 27th the tow parted but was quickly secured again and the battleships were able to continue southwards at 6 knots.

HMS Cumberland rejoined the force having effected temporary repairs at Freetown. HMS Cornwall and HMS Delhi had also joined after having chased the French cruiser Primaguet and the tanker Tarn.

At 0550/29, HMS Barham passed the boom at Freetown followed by the rest of the force. So ended a difficult operation. No British warship had been sunk but several had been damaged. HMS Cumberland was out of action for 13 day and HMS Fiji for six months. HMS Resolution was temporarily patched up at Freetown but was not fully operational. She returned to England six months later but was then sent on to the U.S.A. for full repairs. It was a full year later before she was again ready for active service. Five more ships HMS Barham, HMAS Australia, HMS Dragon, HMS Inglefield and HMS Foresight were also damaged but their fighting efficiency was not seriously impaired. (2)

30 Mar 1941
HMS Severn (Lt.Cdr. A.N.G. Campbell, RN) departed Freetown for her 11th war patrol. She was ordered to participate in a special operation (Operation Grab) in which four Italian submarines coming from the Red Sea and their German supply vessel/tanker were to be intercepted. The British had discovered where these ships were to make rendez-vous though 'Ultra' (code breaking) and decided to spoil 'the party'.

Besides HMS Severn the armed merchant cruiser HMS Alcantara (Capt. (Retd.) J.G.P. Ingham, DSO, RN) and the sloops HMS Milford (Cdr. (Retd.) the Hon. V.M. Wyndham-Quin, RN) and HMS Bridgewater (A/Cdr. (Retd.) H.F.G. Leftwich, RN) were also involved in this operation. (3)

18 May 1941
The British merchant Piako is torpedoed and sunk by German U-boat U-107 about 130 nautical miles south-west of Freetown in position 07°52'N, 14°57'W. HMS Bridgewater (Cdr. H.F.G. Leftwich, RN (retired)) later picks up 65 survivors.

3 Nov 1941
HMS Severn (Lt.Cdr. A.N.G. Campbell, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Freetown together with HMS Velox (Lt.Cdr. E.G. Roper, DSC, RN), HMS Bridgewater (Cdr. (Retd.) N.W.H. Weekes, OBE, RN), HMS Starwort (Lt.Cdr. N.W. Duck, RD, RNR) and two ML's. (4)

7 Nov 1941
HMS Severn (Lt.Cdr. A.N.G. Campbell, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Freetown together with HMS Bridgewater (Cdr. (Retd.) N.W.H. Weekes, OBE, RN), HMS Starwort (Lt.Cdr. N.W. Duck, RD, RNR) and two ML's. (4)

9 Nov 1941
HMS Severn (Lt.Cdr. A.N.G. Campbell, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Freetown together with HMS Brilliant (Lt.Cdr. A.G. Poe, RN), HMS Bridgewater (Cdr. (Retd.) N.W.H. Weekes, OBE, RN), HMS Hollyhock (Lt. T.E. Davies, OBE, RNR) and HMS Turcoman (T/Lt. R.F. Pretty, RNVR). (4)

30 Sep 1942
HMS H 43 (Lt. B.J.B. Andrew, DSC, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Lough Foyle with HMS Pentstemon (Lt.Cdr.(Retd.) J. Byron, DSC, RNR), HMS Zetland (Lt. J.V. Wilkinson, RN), HMS Bicester (Lt.Cdr. S.W.F. Bennetts, RN) and HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) N.W.H. Weekes, OBE, RN). (5)

1 Dec 1942
HMS Bridgewater (Cdr. N.W. Weeks, OBE, RN) picks up 19 survivors from the British tanker Cerinthus that was torpedoed and sunk on 10 November 1942 by German U-boat U-128 about 180 nautical miles south-west from the Cape Verde Islands in position 12°27'N, 27°45'W.

14 Dec 1942
HMS P 614 (Lt. H.W. Wilkinson, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Freetown together with HMS Bridgewater (Cdr. (retired) N.W.H. Weekes, OBE, RN), HMS Armeria (Lt. M. Todd, RNR) and HMS Holcombe (Lt.Cdr. S.H. Pinchin, DSC, RN). (6)

18 Jul 1943
At 07.56 hours on 18 July 1943, the unescorted British passenger ship Incomati was torpedoed and damaged by German U-boat U-508 about 200 nautical miles south of Lagos. At 08.18 hours, the U-boat began shelling the ship, setting her on fire and left the wreck in sinking condition. The ship finally sank in position 03°09'N, 04°15'E. One crew member was lost. The master, 101 crew members, eight gunners and 112 passengers were picked up by the British destroyer HMS Boadicea (Lt.Cdr. F.C. Brodrick, RN) and the British sloop HMS Bridgewater (Cdr. N.W.H. Weekes, OBE, RN) and landed at Takoradi.

21 Feb 1944
HMS Trenchant (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) departed from Falmouth for Holy Loch. She was escorted by HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN). (7)

23 Feb 1944
HMS Vox (Lt. J.M. Michell, RN) conducted attack exercises in the Clyde area during which HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) served as the target. These included night exercises. (8)

25 Feb 1944
HMS Vox (Lt. J.M. Michell, RN) conducted attack exercises in the Clyde area during which HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) and HMS Jan van Gelder (Lt. P.D. O'Driscoll, RNR) served as the targets. (8)

25 Feb 1944
HMS Porpoise (Lt.Cdr. H.A.L. Marsham, OBE, RN) conducted attack exercises in the Clyde area during which HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) and HMS Jan van Gelder (Lt. P.D. O'Driscoll, RNR) served as the targets. (9)

26 Feb 1944
HMS Terrapin (Lt.Cdr. D.S.R. Martin, DSO and 2 bars, RN) and HMS Porpoise (Lt.Cdr. H.A.L. Marsham, OBE, RN) both conducted attack exercises in the Clyde area with HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) and HMS Jan van Gelder (Lt. P.D. O'Driscoll, RNR) serving as targets. These exercises included night exercises. (10)

26 Feb 1944
HMS Vox (Lt. J.M. Michell, RN) conducted attack exercises in the Clyde area during which HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) and HMS Jan van Gelder (Lt. P.D. O'Driscoll, RNR) served as the targets. These included night exercises. (8)

1 Mar 1944
HMS H 44 (Lt. P.N. Joyce, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Lough Foyle with HMCS Lunenburg (T/Lt. D.L. Miller, RCNVR), HMCS Edmundston (T/A/Lt.Cdr. R.D. Barrett, RCNR), HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) and HMS Shiel (Lt. H.P. Crail, DSC, RNR). (11)

1 Mar 1944
HMS Porpoise (Lt.Cdr. H.A.L. Marsham, OBE, RN) conducted attack exercises in the Clyde area during which HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) served as the target. (12)

11 Apr 1944
HMS Trenchant (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) conducted attack exercises in the Clyde area during which HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) served as the target. (13)

12 Apr 1944
HMS Truant (Lt. E.C. Croswell, DSC, RN) conducted attack exercises in the Clyde area with HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) serving as target. Upon completion of these exercises HMS Truant proceeded to Campbeltown. (14)

12 Apr 1944
HMS Trenchant (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) conducted attack exercises in the Clyde area during which HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) served as the target. (13)

12 Apr 1944
HMS Statesman (Lt. R.G.P. Bulkeley, RN) conducted gunnery exercises in the Clyde area. Also a practice attack was made on HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN). (15)

13 Apr 1944
HMS Safari (Lt.Cdr.(Retd.) J.R.G. Harvey, RN) conducted attack exercises for the C.O.Q.C. (Commanding Officers Qualifying Course) in the Clyde area during which HMS Wanderer (Lt.Cdr. R.F. Whinney, DSC, RN) and HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) served as the targets. These included night exercises. (16)

14 Apr 1944
HMS Safari (Lt.Cdr.(Retd.) J.R.G. Harvey, RN) conducted night attack exercises for the C.O.Q.C. (Commanding Officers Qualifying Course) in the Clyde area during which HMS Wanderer (Lt.Cdr. R.F. Whinney, DSC, RN) and HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) served as the targets. Upon completion of these night exercises HMS Safari proceeded to Rothesay. (16)

15 Apr 1944
HMS Truant (Lt. E.C. Croswell, DSC, RN) conducted exercises off Campbeltown with HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN). (14)

15 Apr 1944
HMS Trenchant (Lt.Cdr. A.R. Hezlet, DSC, RN) conducted radar exercises in the Campbeltown area. Later the same day HMS Trenchant conducted attack exercises off Campbeltown during which HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) served as the target. (13)

15 Apr 1944
HMS Statesman (Lt. R.G.P. Bulkeley, RN) conducted exercises in the Clyde area. The included night exercises during which practice attacks were made on HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN). (15)

17 Apr 1944
HMS Truant (Lt. E.C. Croswell, DSC, RN) shifted from Holy Loch to Larne. En-route exercises were carried out with HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN). (14)

29 Apr 1944
HMS Voracious (Lt. F.D.G. Challis, DSC, RN) conducted attack exercises in the Clyde area with HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) and HMS Jan van Gelder (Lt. P.D. O'Driscoll, RNR). These included night exercises. (17)

30 Apr 1944
HMS Terrapin (Lt.Cdr. D.S.R. Martin, DSO and 2 bars, RN) departed from Holy Loch bound for Gibraltar. She is to proceed to the Far East. During the passage south through the Irish Sea she was escorted by HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN).

For the daily positions of HMS Terrapin during this passage see the map below.

(18)

9 May 1944
HMS Shalimar (Lt. W.G. Meeke, DSC, MBE, RN) conducted attack exercises in the Clyde area during which HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) served as the target. These included night exercises. (19)

10 May 1944
HMS Safari (Lt.Cdr.(Retd.) J.R.G. Harvey, RN) conducted attack exercises for the C.O.Q.C. (Commanding Officers Qualifying Course) in the Clyde area during which HMS Braithwaite (Lt.Cdr. E.M. Mackay, RD, RNR) and HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) served as the targets. (20)

14 May 1944
HMS Shalimar (Lt. W.G. Meeke, DSC, MBE, RN) conducted gunnery exercises in the Clyde area on a target that was being towed by HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN). (19)

15 May 1944
HMS Shalimar (Lt. W.G. Meeke, DSC, MBE, RN) conducted gunnery exercises in the Clyde area on a target that was being towed by HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN). (19)

26 May 1944
HMS Voracious (Lt. F.D.G. Challis, DSC, RN) conducted attack exercises in the Clyde area with HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) and gunnery exercises on a target that was being towed by HMS Jan van Gelder (Lt. P.D. O'Driscoll, RNR). (21)

27 May 1944
HMS Voracious (Lt. F.D.G. Challis, DSC, RN) conducted attack exercises in the Clyde area with HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN). These included night exercises. (21)

2 Jun 1944
HMS Upshot (Lt. H.W. Wilkinson, RN) conducted attack exercises in the Clyde area during which HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) served as the target. (22)

5 Jun 1944
HMS Viking (Lt. R. Bannar-Martin, DSC, RN) conducted attack exercises in the Clyde area during which HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) served as the target. (23)

7 Jun 1944
HMS Upshot (Lt. H.W. Wilkinson, RN) and HMS Thule (Lt. A.C.G. Mars, DSO, DSC, RN) conducted attack exercises in the Clyde area with each other.

Also attacks were made during which HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) and HMS Cutty Sark served as the targets. These also included night exercises. (22)

8 Jun 1944
HMS Shalimar (Lt. W.G. Meeke, DSC, MBE, RN) conducted attack exercises in the Clyde area during which HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) served as the target. (24)

9 Jun 1944
HMS Upshot (Lt. H.W. Wilkinson, RN) conducted attack exercises in the Clyde area during which HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) served as the target. (22)

10 Jun 1944
HMS Upshot (Lt. H.W. Wilkinson, RN) and HMS Voracious (Lt. F.D.G. Challis, DSC, RN) conducted attack exercises in the Clyde area during which HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) served as the target. (22)

10 Jun 1944
HMS Shalimar (Lt. W.G. Meeke, DSC, MBE, RN) and HMS Subtle (Lt. B.J.B. And rew, DSC, RN) conducted attack exercises in the Clyde area during which HMS Jan van Gelder (Lt. P.D. O'Driscoll, RNR) and HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) served as the targets. (24)

17 Jun 1944
HMS Voracious (Lt. F.D.G. Challis, DSC, RN) conducted attack exercises in the Clyde area with HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) and HMS Jan van Gelder (Lt. P.D. O'Driscoll, RNR). (25)

22 Jun 1944
HMS Safari (Lt.Cdr.(Retd.) J.R.G. Harvey, RN) conducted night attack exercises for the C.O.Q.C. (Commanding Officers Qualifying Course) in the Clyde area with HMS Milford (Lt.Cdr. G.G. Slade, RN), HMS PC 74 (A/Lt.Cdr. A. Richardson, RNR), HMS Blade (T/A/Lt.Cdr. S.T. Wenlock, RNR), HMS Kihna (A/Cdr.(Retd.) A.R.W. Sayle, RD, RNR), HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) and HMS Kingfisher (T/Lt. F.D. Betts, RNR). Upon completion of these exercises HMS Safari proceeded to Rothesay. (26)

24 Jun 1944
HMS Vulpine (T/Lt. P.S. Thirsk, DSC, RNR) conducted attack exercises in the Clyde area during which HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) and HMS Shikari (Lt. E.H.U. Cautley, RNVR) served as the targets. (27)

25 Jun 1944
HMS Vulpine (T/Lt. P.S. Thirsk, DSC, RNR) conducted RD/F exercises in the Clyde area with HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN). (27)

28 Jun 1944
HMS Shakespeare (Lt. D. Swanston, DSC and Bar, RN) conducted attack exercises in the Clyde area during which HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) and HMS Shikari (Lt. E.H.U. Cautley, RNVR) served as the targets. (28)

1 Jul 1944
HMS Vulpine (T/Lt. P.S. Thirsk, DSC, RNR) conducted attack exercises in the Clyde area during which HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) and HMS Cutty Sark (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) served as the targets. (29)

1 Jul 1944
HMS Shalimar (Lt. W.G. Meeke, DSC, MBE, RN) conducted attack exercises in the Clyde area during which HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) and HMS Cutty Sark (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) served as the targets. These included night exercises. (30)

2 Jul 1944
HMS Vulpine (T/Lt. P.S. Thirsk, DSC, RNR) conducted night RD/F and attack exercises in the Clyde area during which HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) served as the target. (29)

2 Jul 1944
HMS Shalimar (Lt. W.G. Meeke, DSC, MBE, RN) conducted attack exercises in the Clyde area during which HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) served as the target. These included night exercises. (30)

3 Jul 1944
HMS Shalimar (Lt. W.G. Meeke, DSC, MBE, RN) conducted night attack exercises in the Clyde area during which HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) served as the target. On completion of these exercises HMS Shalimar proceeded to Holy Loch. (30)

4 Jul 1944
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. M.F.R. Ainslie, DSO, DSC, RN) conducted attack exercises in the Clyde area with HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) serving as target. (31)

8 Jul 1944
HMS Urtica (Lt. K.H. Martin, RN) conducted attack exercises in the Clyde area during which served HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) as the target. These included night exercises. (32)

21 Jul 1944
HMS Vulpine (T/Lt. P.S. Thirsk, DSC, RNR) and HMS Supreme (Lt. T.E. Barlow, RN) conducted night attack exercises in the Clyde area during which HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) served as the target. (29)

22 Jul 1944
HMS Vulpine (T/Lt. P.S. Thirsk, DSC, RNR) and HMS Supreme (Lt. T.E. Barlow, RN) conducted night attack exercises in the Clyde area during which HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) served as the target.

Upon completion of these exercises HMS Vulpine proceeded to Larne. (29)

24 Jul 1944
HMS Thrasher (Lt.Cdr. M.F.R. Ainslie, DSO, DSC, RN) conducted attack exercises in the Clyde area with HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) serving as target. (31)

29 Jul 1944
HMS Vitality (Lt. K.S. Renshaw, DSC, RNR) conducted exercises in the Clyde area with HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN). (33)

30 Jul 1944
During the night of 29 / 30 July 1944, HMS Vitality (Lt. K.S. Renshaw, DSC, RNR), conducted night exercises in the Clyde area with HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN). (33)

1 Aug 1944
HMS Voracious (Lt. F.D.G. Challis, DSC, RN) departed Holy Loch for Gibraltar. She was to joined a convoy KMS 85 for the passage. Until she joined this convoy she was escorted by HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN).

For the daily positions of HMS Voracious during the passage to Gibraltar see the map below.

(34)

5 Aug 1944
HMS Vulpine (T/Lt. P.S. Thirsk, DSC, RNR) conducted attack exercises in the Clyde area during which HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) and HMS Shikari (Lt. E.H.U. Cautley, RNVR) served as the targets. (35)

5 Aug 1944
HMS Shakespeare (Lt. D. Swanston, DSC and Bar, RN) conducted attack exercises in the Clyde area during which HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) served as target. These included night exercises. (36)

7 Aug 1944
HMS Vulpine (T/Lt. P.S. Thirsk, DSC, RNR) shifted from Holy Loch to Campbeltown. En-route she conducted attack and RD/F exercises in the Clyde area during which HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) served as the target. (35)

8 Aug 1944
HMS Vulpine (T/Lt. P.S. Thirsk, DSC, RNR) and conducted night attack ad RD/F exercises in the Clyde area during which HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) served as the target. (35)

9 Aug 1944
HMS Vulpine (T/Lt. P.S. Thirsk, DSC, RNR) conducted attack exercises in the Clyde area during which HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) and HMS Shikari (Lt. E.H.U. Cautley, RNVR) served as the targets. (35)

11 Aug 1944
HMS Vulpine (T/Lt. P.S. Thirsk, DSC, RNR) conducted attack exercises in the Clyde area during which HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) served as the target. (35)

12 Aug 1944
HMS Trident (Lt. A.J.W. Pitt, DSO, RN), HMS Vitality (Lt. K.S. Renshaw, DSC, RNR), HMS Varne (Lt. I.G. Raikes, DSC, RN) and HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) conducted exercises in the Clyde area.

Upon completion of these exercises HMS Vitality, HMS Varne and HMS Bridgewater proceeded to Campbeltown while HMS Trident proceeded to Holy Loch.

During the night of 12 / 13 August 1944, HMS Varne, HMS Vitality and HMS Bridgewater conducted night exercises off Campbeltown. Upon completion of these exercises all ships proceeded to Holy Loch. (37)

15 Aug 1944
HMS Trident (Lt. A.J.W. Pitt, DSO, RN) conducted practice attacks in the Clyde area during which HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) served as target.

These exercises also included night attacks during the night of 15/16 August 1944. (38)

15 Aug 1944
HMS Varne (Lt. I.G. Raikes, DSC, RN) conducted attack exercises on the Clyde area during which HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) served as the target. These included night exercises. (39)

19 Aug 1944
HMS Tiptoe (Lt.Cdr. P.R.H. Harrison, DSO, DSC and Bar, RN) conducted attack exercises in the Clyde area during which HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) served as the target. (40)

19 Aug 1944
HMS Urtica (Lt. K.H. Martin, RN) conducted attack exercises in the Clyde area during which HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) and HMS Sardonyx (A/Lt.Cdr. T.A. Easton, RNVR) served as the targets. (41)

20 Aug 1944
HMS Tiptoe (Lt.Cdr. P.R.H. Harrison, DSO, DSC and Bar, RN) radar trials in the Clyde area with HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN). (40)

22 Aug 1944
HMS Tiptoe (Lt.Cdr. P.R.H. Harrison, DSO, DSC and Bar, RN) conducted attack exercises in the Clyde area during which HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) served as the target. These included night exercises. (40)

22 Aug 1944
HMS Trump (Cdr. E.F. Balston, DSO, RN) conducted attack exercises in the Clyde area with HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN). (42)

23 Aug 1944
HMS Tiptoe (Lt.Cdr. P.R.H. Harrison, DSO, DSC and Bar, RN) conducted attack exercises in the Clyde area during which HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) served as the target. Upon completion of these exercises HMS Tiptoe returned to Holy Loch. (40)

23 Aug 1944
HMS Trump (Cdr. E.F. Balston, DSO, RN) conducted attack exercises in the Clyde area with HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN). (42)

1 Sep 1944
HMS Tiptoe (Lt.Cdr. P.R.H. Harrison, DSO, DSC and Bar, RN) conducted attack exercises in the Clyde area during which HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) served as the target. (43)

5 Sep 1944
HMS Tiptoe (Lt.Cdr. P.R.H. Harrison, DSO, DSC and Bar, RN) conducted attack exercises in the Clyde area during which HMS Shikari (Lt. E.H.U. Cautley, RNVR) served as the target. These were followed by (night) attack exercises during which HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) served as the target. (43)

9 Sep 1944
HMS Trident (Lt. A.J.W. Pitt, DSO, RN) conducted practice attacks in the Clyde area during which HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) and HMS Shikari (Lt. E.H.U. Cautley, RNVR) served as targets.

In the evening night exercises were carried out with HMS Bridgewater. (44)

23 Sep 1944
HMS Torbay (Lt. C.P. Norman, DSO, RN) conducted attack exercises in the Clyde area with HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN). These also included night exercises during the night of 23/24 September. (45)

30 Sep 1944
HMS Vitality (Lt. K.S. Renshaw, DSC, RNR) conducted exercises off Larne with HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) and HMS Jan van Gelder (Lt. P.D. O'Driscoll, RNR). Following the exercises with these surface ships HMS Vitality conducted gunnery and night exercises. (46)

5 Oct 1944
HMS Taciturn (Lt. E.T. Stanley, DSO, DSC, RN) departed from her builders yard at Barrow for Holy Loch. She was escorted by HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN). (47)

8 Oct 1944
HrMs O 24 (Lt.Cdr. W.J. de Vries, RNN) departed Holy Loch for Barrow-in-Furness for a short refit and some repairs. She was escorted by HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN). (48)

21 Oct 1944
HMS Virulent (Lt. S.J. Fovargue, RN) conducted attack exercises in the Clyde area during which HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) and HMS Jan van Gelder (Lt. P.D. O'Driscoll, RNR) served as the targets. These included night exercises. Upon completion of these exercises HMS Virulent proceeded to Holy Loch the next morning. (49)

21 Oct 1944
HMS Scythian (T/Lt C.P. Thode, RNZNVR) conducted attack exercises in the Clyde area during which HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) served as the target. These included night exercises. (50)

23 Oct 1944
HMS Safari (Lt.Cdr.(Retd.) J.R.G. Harvey, RN) conducted attack exercises for the C.O.Q.C. (Commanding Officers Qualifying Course) in the Clyde area during which HMS Blade (T/A/Lt.Cdr. S.T. Wenlock, RNR), HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) and HMS Milford (Lt.Cdr. G.G. Slade, RN) served as targets. (51)

26 Oct 1944
HMS Vengeful (Lt. A.S. Melville-Ross, DSC, RN) conducted RD/F exercises off Campbeltown with HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN). (52)

27 Oct 1944
HMS Vengeful (Lt. A.S. Melville-Ross, DSC, RN) conducted RD/F exercises off Campbeltown with HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN). Upon completion of these exercises HMS Vengeful proceeded to Holy Loch. (52)

9 Nov 1944
HMS Vengeful (Lt. A.S. Melville-Ross, DSC, RN) conducted attack exercises in the Clyde area during which HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) and HMS Sardonyx (A/Lt.Cdr. T.A. Easton, RNVR) served as the targets. These included night exercises. (53)

12 Nov 1944
HMS Vengeful (Lt. A.S. Melville-Ross, DSC, RN) conducted attack exercises in the Clyde area during which HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) served as the target. (53)

14 Nov 1944
HMS Vengeful (Lt. A.S. Melville-Ross, DSC, RN) conducted attack exercises in the Clyde area during which HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) served as the target. (53)

21 Nov 1944
HMS Sidon (Lt. H.C. Gowan, RN) departed her builders yard at Liverpool for Holy Loch. She was escorted by HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN). (54)

29 Nov 1944
HMS Sibyl (Lt. H.R. Murray, RN) conducted attack exercises in the Clyde area during which HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) and HMS Jan van Gelder (Lt. P.D. O'Driscoll, RNR) served as the targets. These included night exercises. (55)

3 Dec 1944
HMS Stubborn (Lt. A.G. Davies, RN) conducted night attack exercises in the Clyde area during which HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) served as the target. On completion of these exercises HMS Stubborn anchored in Brodick Bay for the night. (56)

4 Dec 1944
HMS Virulent (Lt. S.J. Fovargue, RN) conducted attack exercises in the Clyde area during which HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) and HMS Jan van Gelder (Lt. P.D. O'Driscoll, RNR) served as the targets. These included night exercises. (57)

15 Dec 1944
HMS Unrivalled (Lt. D.S. Brown, RNVR) shifted from Douglas, Isle of Man to Rothesay. She was escorted by HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN). (58)

17 Dec 1944
HMS Taciturn (Lt.Cdr. E.T. Stanley, DSO, DSC, RN) and HMS Stubborn (Lt. A.G. Davies, RN) both conducted attack exercises in the Clyde area during which HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) served as target. (59)

20 Dec 1944
HMS Safari (Lt.Cdr.(Retd.) J.R.G. Harvey, RN) conducted attack exercises for the C.O.Q.C. (Commanding Officers Qualifying Course) in the Clyde area during which HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) served as target. (60)

24 Dec 1944
HMS Stubborn (Lt. A.G. Davies, RN) conducted night attack exercises in the Clyde area during which HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) served as the target. On completion of these exercises HMS Stubborn proceeded to Holy Loch. (56)

29 Dec 1944
HMS Venturer (Lt. J.S. Launders, DSC and Bar, RN) departed Lerwick for Holy Loch. She was escorted by HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN). (61)

30 Dec 1944
HrMs O 24 (Lt.Cdr. P.J.S. de Jong, RNN), HMS Venturer (Lt. J.S. Launders, DSC and Bar, RN) and HMS Sidon (Lt. H.C. Gowan, RN) departed Scapa Flow for Holy Loch. The submarines were escorted by HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN). (48)

24 Jan 1945
HMS Vengeful (Lt. A.S. Melville-Ross, DSC, RN) and HMS Stubborn (Lt. A.G. Davies, RN) departed Brodick Bay for Tobermory. Escort was provided by HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN).

HMS Vengeful and HMS Stubborn arrived at Tobermory later the same day. (62)

28 Jan 1945
HMS Sibyl (Lt. H.R. Murray, RN) departed the Clyde area for Lerwick. She made the passage together with HMS Spearhead (T/A/Lt.Cdr. R.E. Youngman, RNR) that was to proceed to Scapa Flow. They were escorted by HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN). (63)

2 Feb 1945
HMS Taciturn (Lt.Cdr. E.T. Stanley, DSO, DSC, RN) departed from Lerwick for Holy Loch.

The next day, off Scapa Flow, Taciturn is joined by with HMS Trusty (Lt. J.P. Fyfe, DSC, RN) and by HMS Stubborn (Lt. A.G. Davies, RN) off Loch Alsh. They are escorted by HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN). (64)

7 Feb 1945
HMS Tapir (Lt. J.C.Y. Roxbourgh, DSO, DSC, RN) conducted attack exercises in the Clyde area during which HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) served as target. These included night exercises. (65)

8 Feb 1945
HMS Stubborn (Lt. A.G. Davies, RN) departed the Clyde for Scapa Flow. She made the passage together with HMS Tapir (Lt. J.C.Y. Roxbourgh, DSO, DSC, RN). The French submarine Morse (Lt. O. Chauveau) also took passage but went on towards Lerwick. The submarines were escorted by HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN). (66)

10 Feb 1945
HMS Sibyl (Lt. H.R. Murray, RN) ended her 18th war patrol at Lerwick. She departed for Holy Loch later the same day escorted by HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN). Off Scapa Flow HMS Spearhead (T/A/Lt.Cdr. R.E. Youngman, RNR) and HMS Sceptre (Lt. H.J. Bartlett, DSC, RN) joined. (67)

15 Feb 1945
HMS Turpin (A/Lt.Cdr. J.S. Stevens, DSO and Bar, DSC, RN) conducted attack exercises in the Clyde area during which HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) served as the target. (68)

28 Feb 1945
HMS Totem (A/Lt.Cdr. M.B. St. John, DSC, RN) conducted attack exercises in the Clyde area during which HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) and HMS Sardonyx (Lt.Cdr. L.F.L. Hill, RNR) served as targets. (69)

2 Mar 1945
HMS Totem (A/Lt.Cdr. M.B. St. John, DSC, RN) conducted attack exercises in the Clyde area during which HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN), HMS Sardonyx (Lt.Cdr. L.F.L. Hill, RNR) and HMS Jan van Gelder (Lt. P.D. O'Driscoll, RNR) served as the targets. (70)

4 Mar 1945
HMS Tapir (Lt. J.C.Y. Roxbourgh, DSO, DSC, RN) and HMS Totem (A/Lt.Cdr. M.B. St. John, DSC, RN) both conducted exercises in the Clyde area with HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) and HMS Hastings (A/Cdr. E.A. Stocker, DSC, RN). (71)

5 Mar 1945
HMS Trespasser (Lt. L.E. Herrick, DSC, RN) conducted exercises in the Clyde area. These included a practice attack on HMS Bridgewater. (72)

6 Mar 1945
HMS Trespasser (Lt. L.E. Herrick, DSC, RN) conducted exercises in the Clyde area with HMS Bridgewater. (72)

9 Mar 1945
HMS Trespasser (Lt. L.E. Herrick, DSC, RN) conducted exercises in the Clyde area. These included a practice attacks on HMS Bridgewater. (72)

9 Mar 1945
HrMs O 23 (Lt.Cdr. A.J. Schouwenaar, RNN) conducted attack exercises in the Clyde area during which HMS Sardonyx (Lt.Cdr. L.F.L. Hill, RNR) and HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) served as targets. (73)

10 Mar 1945
HMS Tactician (Lt.Cdr. L.N.A. Jewell, DSC, MBE, RN) conducted exercises in the Clyde area. These included two practice attacks on HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) escorted by HMS Sardonyx (Lt.Cdr. L.F.L. Hill, RNR). (74)

10 Mar 1945
HrMs O 23 (Lt.Cdr. A.J. Schouwenaar, RNN) conducted radar and attack exercises in the Clyde area during which HMS Sardonyx (Lt.Cdr. L.F.L. Hill, RNR) and HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) served as targets. (73)

10 Mar 1945
HMS Vagabond (Lt. I.M. Stoop, DSC, RN) conducted attack exercises in the Clyde area during which HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) and HMS Sardonyx (Lt.Cdr. L.F.L. Hill, RNR) served as the targets. Upon completion HMS Vagabond proceeded to Campbeltown. (75)

12 Mar 1945
HrMs O 23 (Lt.Cdr. A.J. Schouwenaar, RNN) conducted attack exercises in the Clyde area during which HMS Sardonyx (Lt.Cdr. L.F.L. Hill, RNR) and HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) served as targets. (73)

16 Mar 1945
During exercises in the Inchmarnock area, HMS Trespasser (Lt. L.E. Herrick, DSC, RN), performs dummy attacks on HMS Bridgewater. At the end of the day she returns to Holy Loch. (72)

16 Mar 1945
HrMs O 23 (Lt.Cdr. A.J. Schouwenaar, RNN) conducted attack exercises in the Clyde area during which HMS Sardonyx (Lt.Cdr. L.F.L. Hill, RNR) and HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) served as targets. (73)

16 Mar 1945
HMS Votary (Lt. P.M. Staveley, RN) conducted attack exercises in the Clyde area during which HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) and HMS Sardonyx (Lt.Cdr. L.F.L. Hill, RNR) served as the targets. (76)

17 Mar 1945
During exercises in the Inchmarnock area, HMS Trespasser (Lt. L.E. Herrick, DSC, RN) performs dummy attacks on HMS Bridgewater and HMS Shikari. (72)

17 Mar 1945
HrMs O 23 (Lt.Cdr. A.J. Schouwenaar, RNN) conducted attack exercises in the Clyde area during which HMS Shikari (Lt. E.A. Tyrer, DSC, RN) and HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) served as targets. (73)

18 Mar 1945
HMS Trespasser (Lt. L.E. Herrick, DSC, RN) conducted exercises in the Inchmarnock area with HMS Bridgewater. Upon completion of these exercises HMS Trespasser proceeded to Campbeltown. (72)

18 Mar 1945
HMS Totem (A/Lt.Cdr. M.B. St. John, DSC, RN) conducted attack exercises in the Clyde area during which HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN), HMS Sardonyx (Lt.Cdr. L.F.L. Hill, RNR) and HMS Shikari (Lt. E.A. Tyrer, DSC, RN) served as the targets. (70)

18 Mar 1945
HMS Vagabond (Lt. I.M. Stoop, DSC, RN) conducted night attack exercises in the Clyde area during which HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) served as the target. (75)

28 Mar 1945
HMS Trespasser (Lt. L.E. Herrick, DSC, RN), HMS Scorcher (Lt. K.S. Renshaw, DSC, RNR), HMS Votary (Lt. P.M. Staveley, RN) all conducted exercises in the Clyde area with HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) and HMS Sardonyx (Lt.Cdr. L.F.L. Hill, RNR). (76)

1 Apr 1945
HMS Tapir (Lt. J.C.Y. Roxbourgh, DSO, DSC, RN) departed from Holy Loch for Lerwick. Passage to Lerwick was made together with HMS Totem (Lt.Cdr. M.B. St. John, RN) and HMS Varne (Lt. I.G. Raikes, DSC, RN). For part of the way HMS Scotsman (Lt. A.H.B. Anderson, DSC, RNR) was also present. They were escorted by HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN). (77)

3 Apr 1945
HMS Spearhead (T/A/Lt.Cdr. R.E. Youngman, RNR) departed Lerwick for Holy Loch. She was escorted by HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN). En-route HMS Taurus (Lt. P.E. Newstead, DSC, RN) joined. (78)

11 Apr 1945
HMS Trespasser (Lt. L.E. Herrick, DSC, RN) conducted exercises in the Clyde area with HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) M.W. Ewart-Wentworth, RN). (79)

12 Apr 1945
HMS Trusty (Lt. W. St.G. Anderson, DSC, RNR) departed Ardrossan for Scapa Flow. She makes (part of) the passage with HMS Trespasser (Lt. L.E. Herrick, DSC, RN) and HMS Tactician (Lt.Cdr. L.N.A. Jewell, DSC, MBE, RN). They are escorted by HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) M.W. Ewart-Wentworth, RN). (80)

14 Apr 1945
HMS Turpin (A/Lt.Cdr. J.S. Stevens, DSO and Bar, DSC, RN) departed from Lerwick for Holy Loch. She was escorted by HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) M.W. Ewart-Wentworth, RN). (81)

29 Apr 1945
HMS Scotsman (Lt. A.H.B. Anderson, DSC, RNR) conducted attack exercises in the Clyde area during which HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) M.W. Ewart-Wentworth, RN) served as the target. (82)

5 May 1945
HMS Surf (Lt. H.W. Wilkinson, RN) departed Scapa Flow for Holy Loch. She made the passage together with HMS Trusty (Lt. W. St.G. Anderson, DSC, RNR) and HMS Varne (Lt. I.G. Raikes, DSC, RN). They are escorted by HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) M.W. Ewart-Wentworth, RN). (83)

5 May 1945
HMS Trusty (Lt. W. St.G. Anderson, DSC, RNR), HMS Surf (Lt. H.W. Wilkinson, RN) and HMS Varne (Lt. I.G. Raikes, DSC, RN) all departed from Scapa Flow for Rothesay / Holy Loch. They were escorted by HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) M.W. Ewart-Wentworth, RN). (84)

9 May 1945
HMS Safari (Lt.Cdr.(Retd.) J.R.G. Harvey, RN) conducted attack exercises for the C.O.Q.C. (Commanding Officers Qualifying Course) in the Clyde area during which HMS Kihna (Cdr.(Retd.) T.J.T.C. Jenks, RN) and HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) M.W. Ewart-Wentworth, RN) served as targets. (85)

11 May 1945
HMS Sanguine (T/Lt. P.C.S. Pritchard, RNR) departed her builders yard for Holy Loch. She was escorted by HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) M.W. Ewart-Wentworth, RN). (86)

25 May 1945
HMS Tireless (A/Lt.Cdr. M.L.C. Crawford, DSC and Bar, RN) conducted practice attacks in the Clyde area with HMS Hastings (A/Cdr. E.A. Stocker, DSC, RN) and HMS Bridgewater (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN) serving as the targets. These exercises included night exercises. (87)

Sources

  1. ADM 199/380
  2. ADM 234/318
  3. ADM 173/16980 + ADM 199/1886
  4. ADM 173/16988
  5. ADM 173/17253
  6. ADM 173/17529
  7. ADM 173/19056
  8. ADM 173/19443
  9. ADM 173/18585
  10. ADM 173/18995 + ADM 173/18585
  11. ADM 173/18514
  12. ADM 173/18586
  13. ADM 173/19058
  14. ADM 173/19094
  15. ADM 173/18818
  16. ADM 173/18620
  17. ADM 173/19433
  18. ADM 173/18997
  19. ADM 173/18726
  20. ADM 173/18621
  21. ADM 173/19434
  22. ADM 173/19296
  23. ADM 173/19393
  24. ADM 173/18727
  25. ADM 173/19435
  26. ADM 173/18622
  27. ADM 173/19455
  28. ADM 173/18718
  29. ADM 173/19456
  30. ADM 173/18728
  31. ADM 173/19021
  32. ADM 173/19318
  33. ADM 173/19419
  34. ADM 173/19437
  35. ADM 173/19457
  36. ADM 173/18720
  37. ADM 173/19420
  38. ADM 173/19088
  39. ADM 173/19358
  40. ADM 173/19028
  41. ADM 173/19319
  42. ADM 173/19116
  43. ADM 173/19029
  44. ADM 173/19089
  45. ADM 173/19039
  46. ADM 173/19421
  47. ADM 173/18916
  48. File 2.12.03.6444 (Dutch Archives, The Hague, Netherlands)
  49. ADM 173/19410
  50. ADM 173/18651
  51. ADM 173/18626
  52. ADM 173/19363
  53. ADM 173/19364
  54. ADM 173/18750
  55. ADM 173/18744
  56. ADM 173/18860
  57. ADM 173/19412
  58. ADM 173/19230
  59. ADM 173/18918
  60. ADM 173/18628
  61. ADM 173/19377
  62. ADM 173/19753 + ADM 173/20256
  63. ADM 173/19648
  64. ADM 199/1444
  65. ADM 173/19852
  66. ADM 173/19754
  67. ADM 173/19649
  68. ADM 173/20063
  69. ADM 173/19949
  70. ADM 173/19950
  71. ADM 173/19853
  72. ADM 173/19974
  73. File 2.12.03.6428 (Dutch Archives, The Hague, Netherlands)
  74. ADM 173/19807
  75. ADM 173/20219
  76. ADM 173/20345
  77. ADM 173/19854
  78. ADM 173/19691
  79. ADM 173/19975
  80. ADM 173/20040
  81. ADM 173/20065
  82. ADM 173/19581
  83. ADM 173/19787
  84. ADM 173/20041
  85. ADM 173/19532
  86. ADM 173/19542
  87. ADM 173/19929

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


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