Allied Warships

HMS Jersey (F 72)

Destroyer of the J class

HMS Jersey as completed

NavyThe Royal Navy
PennantF 72 
Built byJ.S. White & Co. (Cowes, U.K.) 
Ordered25 Mar 1937 
Laid down28 Sep 1937 
Launched26 Sep 1938 
Commissioned28 Apr 1939 
Lost2 May 1941 
Loss position35° 54'N, 14° 30'E

HMS Jersey (Lt.Cdr. Anthony Frank Burnell-Nugent, DSC, RN) was mined and sunk off La Valletta, Malta in position 35º54'N, 14º30'E.


Commands listed for HMS Jersey (F 72)

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1Lt.Cdr. Alec Murray McKillop, RN14 Apr 1939late 1939

2Lt.Cdr. Walter Evershed, RN30 Aug 19408 Jan 1941
3Lt.Cdr. Anthony Frank Burnell-Nugent, DSC, RN8 Jan 19412 May 1941

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Notable events involving Jersey include:

5 Sep 1939
HMS Southampton (Capt. F.W.H. Jeans, RN) intercepts the German merchant Johannes Molkenbuhr (5294 GRT) off Stadlandet, Norway in position 61°40'N, 03°51'E. The Germans scuttled their ship before it could be captured. The crew was taken off by HMS Jervis (Capt. P.J. Mack, RN). The ship was then finished off by HMS Jersey (Lt.Cdr. A.M. McKillop, RN).

6 Dec 1939
During the night of 6/7 December 1939 the German destroyer Z 12 escorted by her sister ship Z 10 was on an offensive mining operation off Cromer. At 0255hours, just 15 minutes after the lay had been completed, the German ships sighted the British destroyers HMS Juno (Cdr. W.E. Wilson, RN) and HMS Jersey (Lt.Cdr. A.M. McKillop, RN) about 8000m away. The Germans turned to a parallel course and by 0310hours had closed range to 4,600m while remaining undetected themselves. Z 10 fired three torpedoes at Juno, the lead British ship while Z 12 sent four more torpedoes at Jersey. Z 10's salvo missed, but Z 12 scored with one torpedo. The blow started a large fire and caused damage that required ten months to repair. Juno turned back to assist Jersey, making smoke; apparently the British believed a submarine had attacked them. The Germans still had the advantage of surprise and fired at least five more torpedoes, but then they decided to break off the action and return for home. HMS Jersey was under repair until 23 September 1940.

10 Oct 1940
HMS Jersey (Lt.Cdr. W. Evershed, RN) set off a mine when leaving the Humber and sustained some damage, repairs were carried out in the docks in London. Jersey arrived at Plymouth on the 13th October.

7 Nov 1940
HMS H 43 (Lt. H.R.B. Newton, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Plymouth with HMS Jersey (Lt.Cdr. W. Evershed, RN) and HMS Kashmir (Cdr. H.A. King, RN).

Upon completing these exercises H 43 departed Plymouth for Holyhead. She was escorted by HMS Troubadour (Cdr.(Retd.) D.H. Milward, DSC, RNR). (1)

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. (2)

8 Dec 1940
HMS Manchester (Capt. H.A. Packer, RN) departed Gibraltar for Scapa Flow. She was escorted by the destroyer HMS Jersey (Lt.Cdr. W. Evershed, DSO, RN) until 11 December when she was detached to Plymouth. (3)

6 Feb 1941

British raid on Genoa.

Force H (Vice Admiral Somerville) left Gibraltar on 6 February 1941. The battlecruiser HMS Renown (Capt R.R. McGrigor, RN), battleship HMS Malaya (Capt. A.F.E. Palliser, DSC, RN), aircraft carrier HMS Ark Royal (Capt. C.S. Holland, RN), light cruiser HMS Sheffield (Capt. C.A.A. Larcom, RN) and the destroyers HMS Fearless (Cdr. A.F. Pugsley, RN) HMS Foxhound (Lt.Cdr. G.H. Peters, DSC, RN), HMS Foresight (Cdr. J.S.C. Salter, RN), HMS Fury (Lt.Cdr. T.C. Robinson, RN), HMS Encounter (Lt.Cdr. E.V.St.J. Morgan, RN) and HMS Jersey (Lt.Cdr. A.F. Burnell-Nugent, DSC, RN) left Gibraltar to the west with convoy HG-53. This was done to fool German and Italian observers in Spain. In the meantime 4 destroyers HMS Duncan (Capt. A.D.B. James, RN), HMS Isis (Cdr. C.S.B. Swinley, DSC, RN), HMS Firedrake (Lt.Cdr. S.H. Norris, DSO, DSC, RN) and HMS Jupiter (Lt.Cdr. N.V.J.P. Thew, RN) left Gibraltar and steamed to the east to conduct a anti-submarine sweep. During the night Force H reversed course and passed Gibraltar on an easterly course back into the Mediterranean. There they were joined by the 4 destroyers that conducted the anti-submarine sweep.

On 8 February the Italian fleet left port and steamed south after they received reports of British carrier aircraft south of the Balearics. The Italians thought that there was another convoy to Malta.

Early in the morning of 9 February Renown, Malaya and Sheffield bombarded the Italian city of Genoa. In the harbour 4 ships were sunk and 18 were damaged. Also the city itself was damaged.

The Italian fleet turned around and tried to intercept the British ships but due to the bad weather this failed.

In the meantime Ark Royal's aircraft raided Livorno and mined the harbour of La Spezia.

Force H safely returned to Gibraltar on 11 February.

Media links

British destroyers & frigates

Norman Friedman

The Kellys

Langtree, Christopher

Destroyers of World War Two

Whitley, M. J.


  1. ADM 173/16313
  2. Personal communication
  3. ADM 53/112671

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

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