Allied Warships

HMS Jackal (F 22)

Destroyer of the J class

HMS Jackal as completed

NavyThe Royal Navy
PennantF 22 
Built byJohn Brown Shipbuilding & Engineering Company Ltd. (Clydebank, Scotland) 
Ordered25 Mar 1937 
Laid down24 Sep 1937 
Launched25 Oct 1938 
Commissioned13 Apr 1939 
Lost12 May 1942 
Loss position32° 38'N, 26° 20'E

HMS Jackal (Cdr. Christopher Theodore Jellicoe, DSC, RN) was bombed and heavily damaged on 11 May 1942 about 90 nautical miles north-west of Mersa Matruth, Egypt in position 32º38'N, 26º20'E in the eastern Mediterranean by German Ju88 aircraft. She was sunk the next day by HMS Jervis.


Commands listed for HMS Jackal (F 22)

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1Cdr. Trevylyan Michael Napier, RN14 Mar 193927 Aug 1940
2Cdr. Charles Leslie Firth, RN27 Aug 194011 Mar 1941
3Lt.Cdr. Ronald McClellan Powning Jonas, DSC, RN11 Mar 1941early 1942
4Cdr. Christopher Theodore Jellicoe, DSC, RNearly 194212 May 1942

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Notable events involving Jackal include:

6 Sep 1940
HMS Tuna (Lt.Cdr. M.K. Cavenagh-Mainwaring, RN) departed from Rosyth for Holy Loch. She made the passage together with Submarine depot ship HMS Forth (Capt. G.C.P. Menzies, RN). They were escorted by HMS Jackal (Cdr. C.L. Firth, RN) and HMS Jaguar (Lt.Cdr. J.F.W. Hine, RN). (1)

13 Sep 1940
The battlecruiser HMS Hood (Capt. Sir I.G. Glennie, RN), battleship HMS Nelson (Capt. Sir G.J.A. Miles, RN) and the light cruisers HMS Bonaventure (Capt. H.J. Egerton, RN) and HMS Naiad (Capt. M.H.A. Kelsey, DSC, RN) shifted from Scapa Flow to Rosyth. They were escorted HMS Kashmir (Cdr. H.A. King, RN), HMS Kipling (Cdr. A. St. Clair-Ford, RN), HMS Zulu (Cdr. J.S. Crawford, RN), HMS Sikh (Cdr. J.A. Giffard, RN), HMS Somali (Capt. C. Caslon, RN), and HMS Eskimo (Cdr. St. J.A. Micklethwait, DSO and Bar, RN). At sea they were joined by the light cruiser (AA cruiser) HMS Cairo (Capt. P.V. McLaughlin, RN) and destroyers HMS Jackal (Cdr. C.L. Firth, MVO, RN) and HMS Electra (Lt.Cdr. S.A. Buss, MVO, RN). (2)

11 Oct 1940
The battleship HMS Revenge sails from Plymouth with the destroyers HMS Javelin, HMS Jupiter, HMS Kelvin, HMS Kipling, HMS Jackal, HMS Jaguar and HMS Kashmir to shell the French port of Cherbourg.

29 Oct 1940
At 0725 hours, HMS Talisman (Lt.Cdr. P.S. Francis, RN), made rendes-vous with HMS Jackal (Cdr. C.L. Firth, RN). At 1803 hours escort duties were taken over by HMS Rosemary (Lt.(ret.) H.V. Wheeler, RN). (3)

29 Nov 1940
The 5th British destroyer flotilla (Capt. Lord Louis Mountbatten), HMS Javelin (flag), HMS Jupiter, HMS Kashmir, HMS Jackal and HMS Jersey encounters the German destroyers Karl Galster, Hans Lody and Richard Beitzen while these were conducting an anti-shipping raid off Plymouth. In the gun/torpedo battle that followed HMS Javelin was hit by two torpedoes, losing both her bow and stern. Only 155 feet of Javelin's original 353 foot length remained afloat and was towed back to harbour. Javelin was out of action for almost a year. (4)

28 Jan 1941
HMS Prince of Wales (Rear Admiral L.H.K. Hamilton, DSO and Bar, RN) departed Liverpool for Rosyth. She was escorted by the destroyers HMS Highlander (Cdr. S. Boucher, RN), HMS Hesperus (Cdr. D.G.F.W. MacIntyre, RN) and HMS Havelock (Cdr. E.H. Thomas, RN).

At 1825 hours the anti-aircraft cruiser HMS Curacoa (Capt. C.C. Hughes-Hallett, RN) also joined.

At 0850/29 the destroyer HMS Jackal (Cdr. C.L. Firth, MVO, RN) joined until 1253 hours when she departed the screen.

Shortly before 1600/29 light cruiser HMS Nigeria (Capt. J.G.L. Dundas, CBE, RN) and the destroyers HMS Inglefield (Capt. P. Todd, DSO, RN), HMS Maori (Cdr. H.T. Armstrong, DSC, RN) and HMAS Nizam (Lt.Cdr M.J. Clark, RAN) joined. HMS Hesperus and HMS Havelock were then detached.

For the daily noon positions of HMS Prince of Wales during the passage from Liverpool to Rosyth see the map below.


24 Mar 1941
With her refit and reconstruction completed HMS Exeter (Capt. O.L. Gordon, MVO, RN) departed Plymouth for Scapa Flow. She was escorted by HMS Kelly (Capt. L.F.A.V.N. Mountbatten, GCVO, RN), HMS Kashmir (Cdr. H.A. King, RN), HMS Kelvin (Cdr. J.H. Allison, DSO, RN) and HMS Jackal (Lt.Cdr. R.McC.P. Jonas, DSC, RN). (6)

5 May 1942
HMS Otus (Lt. R.J. Clutterbuck, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Alexandria together with HMS Airedale (Lt.Cdr. A.G. Forman, DSC, RN), HMS Sikh (Capt. St.J.A. Micklethwait, DSO and Bar, RN) and HMS Jackal (Cdr. C.T. Jellicoe, DSC, RN). (7)

9 May 1942
HMS Otus (Lt. R.J. Clutterbuck, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Alexandria together with HMS Jackal (Cdr. C.T. Jellicoe, DSC, RN). (7)

Media links

British destroyers & frigates

Norman Friedman

The Kellys

Langtree, Christopher

Destroyers of World War Two

Whitley, M. J.


  1. ADM 199/373
  2. ADM 199/379
  3. ADM 173/16585
  4. Personal communication
  5. ADM 53/114884
  6. ADM 53/114251 + ADM 199/655
  7. ADM 173/17331

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

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