HMS Hesperia (W 106)
Rescue Tug of the Bustler class
|Navy||The Royal Navy|
|Built by||Henry Robb Ltd. (Leith, U.K.)|
|Laid down||25 Mar 1942|
|Launched||10 Nov 1942|
|Commissioned||21 May 1943|
|Lost||9 Feb 1945|
Grounded in the Mediterranean off Libya on 9 February 1945.
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Notable events involving Hesperia include:
18 Jul 1944
Convoy MKS 56.
This convoy departed Port Said on 18 July 1944.
On departure from Port Said the convoy was made up of the transports / tankers; Avristan (British, 7266 GRT, built 1942), Canara (British, 7024 GRT, built 1942), Durenda (British, 7241 GRT, built 1922), Empire Baxter (British, 7024 GRT, built 1941), Empire Confidence (British, 5023 GRT, built 1925), Fort Orleans (British, 7166 GRT, built 1943), Jersey Hart (British, 7275 GRT, built 1943), Manchester Division (British, 6048 GRT, built 1918), Meline (Norwegian (tanker), 6983 GRT, built 1918), Raymond T. Baker (American, 7207 GRT, built 1944), Samana (British, 7219 GRT, built 1943), Sambur (British, 7219 GRT, built 1943), Samcleve (British, 7219 GRT, built 1943), Thistledale (British, 7241 GRT, built 1942), Troubadour (Panamanian, 6428 GRT, built 1920), Van der Capelle (Dutch, 7037 GRT, built 1942) and Wanderer (British, 5079 GRT, built 1925).
The rescue tug HMRT Hesperia was also part of the convoy
On 19 July 1944 the convoy was joined by the transports; Caduceus (British, 4364 GRT, built 1927), Empire Tide (British, 6978 GRT, built 1941), Fort Meductic (British, 7134 GRT, built 1943), Indiana (Panamanian, 5751 GRT, built 1917), Vasco (British, 2878 GRT, built 1939) which came from Alexandria. They were escorted by the minesweeper HMS Sharpshooter (Lt.Cdr. W.L. O'Mara, DSC, RN) and the corvettes HMS Gloxinia (Lt. D. Perry, DSC, RNR) and HMS Primula (T/Lt. E.N. Wilding, RNVR).
Around 1750B/23, the following transports / tankers departed Augusta to join the convoy which they did around 0525B/24; Carrillo (American, 5013 GRT, built 1911), Cotton Valley (British, 1155 GRT, built 1943), Empire Copperfield (British, 6013 GRT, built 1943), Empire Fay (British (tanker), 814 GRT, built 1943), Empire Lass (British (tanker), 813 GRT, built 1941), Esneh (British, 1931 GRT, built 1919), Fort Dauphin (British, 7133 GRT, built 1943), Pan-Maryland (American (tanker), 7701 GRT, built 1938), Piere Soule (British, 7191 GRT, built 1943), Stephen A. Douglas (British, 7219 GRT, built 1942) and Vito (Norwegian, 5181 GRT, built 1937). They were escorted by Italian torpedoboat Ardimentoso and the corvettes Driade and Baionetta.]
Around 1600B/24, the following transports / tankers arrived at Augusta after having parted company with the convoy; Canara, Empire Tide, Fort Meductic, Jersey Hart, Meline, Raymond T. Baker, Thistledale, Van der Capelle and Vasco. [They were most likely escorting in by the same ships that had escorted the vessels leaving Augusta.]
On 24 July 1944, the transports / tankers Antonia (Dutch (tanker), 3357 GRT, built 1938) and (British, 6044 GRT, built 1940) departed Malta to join the convoy. Also joining from Malta were the auxiliary minelayer HMS Teviotbank (Cdr.(Retd.) R.D. King-Harman, DSO, DSC and Bar, RN) and the submarine HMS Tactician (Lt.Cdr. A.F. Collett, DSC and Bar, RN).
On 25 July 1944, the Antonia, Empire Fay and HMRT Hesperia arrived at Bizerta after having been detached from the convoy while the transport Redgate (British, 4323 GRT, built 1929) joined the convoy as did the AA cruiser HMS Caledon (Capt. R.F. Nichols, RN).
On 26 July 1944, the Vito arrived at Bone after having been detached from the convoy while the transport Empire Trent (British, 5006 GRT, built 1927) joined the convoy.
On 27 July 1944, the Cotton Valley, Empire Baxter, Empire Copperfield, Empire Lass, Fort Dauphin, Indiana, Pan-Maryland, Pierre Soule and Stephen A. Douglas all arrived at Bone after having been detached from the convoy while the transports Balfe (British, 5369 GRT, built 1920), Baron Douglas (British, 3899 GRT, built 1932), Baron Herries (British, 4574 GRT, built 1940), Cromarty (British, 4974 GRT, built 1936) and Lieutenant de la Tour (French, 5844 GRT, built 1917) joined the convoy.
On 28 July 1944, the Carrillo, Esneh and Lieutenant de la Tour arrived at Oran Bay after having parted company with the convoy while the the transports Cydonia (British, 3517 GRT, built 1927) and Jobshaven (Dutch, 3528 GRT, built 1916) joined the convoy.
On 29 July 1944, the following transports arrived at Gibraltar; Balfe, Baron Douglas, Baron Herries, Caduceus, Cape Brenton, Cydonia, Durenda and Fort Orleans. With them HMS Caledon, HMS Tactician, HMS Dart, HMS Shiel, HMS Sharpshooter, HMS Gloxinia and HMS Primula also arrived at Gibraltar.
The remaining transports joined convoy MKS 56G for further passage to the U.K.