Allied Warships

HMS Gazelle (J 342)

Minesweeper of the Auk class

NavyThe Royal Navy
TypeMinesweeper
ClassAuk 
PennantJ 342 
Built bySavannah Machinery and Foundry Co. (Savannah, Georgia, U.S.A.) 
Ordered2 Dec 1941 
Laid down2 Jul 1942 
Launched10 Jan 1943 
Commissioned28 Jul 1943 
End serviceDec 1946 
History

Returned to the United States Navy in December 1946.  

Commands listed for HMS Gazelle (J 342)

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and that we only list Commanding Officers for the duration of the Second World War.

CommanderFromTo
1Lt. James Denis Sutcliffe, RN27 Jul 194321 Nov 1945

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Notable events involving Gazelle include:


30 Oct 1943
HMS H 50 (Lt. J.F. Michell, RN) departed Londonderry for Rothesay. She was escorted by HMS Gazelle (Lt. J.D. Sutcliffe, RN). (1)

27 Apr 1944
In the morning, the battleship HMS Rodney (Capt. R.O. Fitzroy, RN), conducted maneuvering exercises in the Clyde area with the minesweepers HMS Grecian (A/Cdr.(Emgy.) C.D.A. Irvine, RN), HMS Gorgon (T/A/Lt.Cdr. F. Mugford, RNR) and HMS Gazelle (Lt. J.D. Sutcliffe, RN).

In the afternoon 4.7 AA gunnery exercises were carried out by HMS Rodney. (2)

30 Apr 1944
In the morning, the battleship HMS Rodney (Capt. R.O. Fitzroy, RN), conducted maneuvering exercises in the Clyde area with the minesweepers HMS Grecian (A/Cdr.(Emgy.) C.D.A. Irvine, RN) and HMS Gazelle (Lt. J.D. Sutcliffe, RN).

In the afternoon gunnery exercises were carried out by HMS Rodney. (2)

6 May 1945

Operation Cleaver.

Entry of a naval surface force into the Skagerrak and Kattegat.

The following forces took part in this operation;
' Force 5 ' which was made up of the light cruisers HMS Birmingham (Capt. H.W. Williams, RN), HMS Dido (Capt. R.F. Elkins, OBE, RN) and the destroyers HMS Zephyr (Capt. J.H. Allison, DSO and Bar, RN), HMS Zealous (Cdr. R.F. Jessel, DSO, DSC and Bar, RN), HMS Zest (Lt.Cdr. R.B.N. Hicks, DSO, RN) and HMS Zodiac (Lt.Cdr. H.R. Rycroft, DSC, RN).
This force departed Rosyth in the evening of the 6th.

' Force 6 ' which was made up of the heavy cruiser HMS Norfolk (Capt. J.G.Y. Loveband, RN, flying the flag of Vice-Admiral R.R. McGrigor, CB, DSO, RN) and the destroyers HMS Scourge (Lt.Cdr. C.G.H. Brown, DSC, RN, with Capt. P.G.L. Cazalet, DSC, RN on board), HMS Savage (Lt.Cdr. C.W. Malins, DSO, DSC and Bar, RN), HMS Obedient (Lt.Cdr. H. Kirkwood, DSC and Bar, RN), HMS Offa (Lt.Cdr. E.M. Thorpe, DSO, RN), HMS Opportune (Cdr. R.E.D. Ryder, VC, RN), HMS Zambesi (Lt.Cdr. J.M. Palmer, RN) and HMS Carysfort (Lt.Cdr. L.St.G. Rich, DSO and Bar, RN). This force departed Scapa flow early the 7th except to joined the escort carriers HMS Queen (A/Capt. K.J. D'Arcy, DSO, RN), HMS Searcher (Capt. J.W. Grant, DSO, RN), HMS Trumpeter (A/Capt. K.S. Colquhoun, RN) which had still been at sea after operation Judgement together with the escort carrier HMS Campania (Capt. C.B. Alers-Hankey, DSC, RN) and the destroyers HMS Obdurate (Lt.Cdr. R.D. Franks, DSO, DSC, OBE, RN), HNoMS Stord (Lt.Cdr. H. Øi) and ORP Piorun (Lt.Cdr. J. Tchorznicki, ORP). The cruisers and the destroyers joined the escort carriers around 1000B/7.

HMS Campania, HMS Obdurate, HNoMS Stord and ORP Piorun then parted company.

And the 40th Minesweeping Flotilla made up of HMS Catharine (Cdr. Kenneth Hillam Fraser, RN), 6541 HMS Cynthia (T/A/Lt.Cdr. C.L. Chatwin, RNVR), HMS Elfreda (T/A/Lt.Cdr. L. Jolly, RNVR), HMS Grecian (T/A/Cdr. C.R. Fraser, DSC and Bar, RNR) and HMS Gazelle (Lt.Cdr. J.D. Sutcliffe, RN), HMS Maenad (Cdr. C.E. Duggan, RD, RNR), HMS Steadfast (T/A/Lt. A.H. Hall, RNVR) and HMS Tattoo (Lt.Cdr.(Retd.) F.G. Rogers, RD, RNR). They departed Rosyth of the 6th.

Force 5 and the 40th M/S Flotilla arrived at Copenhagen, Denmark on 9 May. The 40th M/S Flotilla swept Force 5 through the minefields.

Force 6 returned to Scapa Flow on 10 May. (3)

11 May 1945

Operation Kingdom.

The object of this operation was to transport the Norwegian Crown Prince, together with Norwegian Government officials and military commanders and also members of the Allied Shaef mission (Supreme Headquarters Allied Expeditionary Force).

For this operation the heavy cruiser HMS Devonshire (Capt. G.M.B. Langley, OBE, RN), fast minelayers HMS Apollo (Capt. J.A. Grindle, CBE, RN), HMS Ariadne (Capt. F.B. Lloyd, OBE, RN), destroyers HMCS Iroquois (Capt. K.F. Adams, RCN), HMS Savage (Lt.Cdr. C.W. Malins, DSO, DSC and Bar, RN), HMS Campbell (Lt. B.W. Meaden, RN), escort destroyer HNoMS Arendal departed Rosyth around 1630B/11. They arrived at Oslo in the afternoon of the 13th.

The were swept in by the minesweepers HMS Catherine (Cdr. Kenneth Hillam Fraser, RN), 6541 HMS Cynthia (T/A/Lt.Cdr. C.L. Chatwin, RNVR), HMS Elfreda (T/A/Lt.Cdr. L. Jolly, RNVR), HMS Grecian (T/A/Cdr. C.R. Fraser, DSC and Bar, RNR) and HMS Gazelle (Lt.Cdr. J.D. Sutcliffe, RN), HMS Maenad (Cdr. C.E. Duggan, RD, RNR), HMS Steadfast (T/A/Lt. A.H. Hall, RNVR) and HMS Tattoo (Lt.Cdr.(Retd.) F.G. Rogers, RD, RNR) which had come from Copenhagen. (4)

Sources

  1. ADM 173/17833
  2. ADM 53/120409
  3. ADM 199/1440
  4. ADM 53/121219 + ADM 199/1440

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


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