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  1. Extra Credits is a Youtube channel that usually talks about videogame design and many other related topics. However, it has a sub-channel that is supported by its fans via Patreon and other means. They've released the first of a video series about the hunt for Bismarck. I find it funny that an adversary is sponsoring this episode, though. Nonetheless, i'll chain all the episodes unto the opening thread so everyone can enjoy it, or have a quick link to them. Oh, and i should mention that the animation style is part of their style. Enjoy, Bismarck fans!!! (P.S.: if there is a way to decrease the size of the video screen, please tell me so via PM so i can lower its size to a more fitting one) Episode 1: Episode 2: Episode 3: Episode 4:
  2. Image of RMS Lancastria In the early morning of April 15, 1912, the largest ocean liner in the world, RMS Titanic, sank to the bottom of the Atlantic, taking with her over 1500 passengers and crew. The disaster, one of the largest maritime disasters in history, shocked the world and brought about dramatic changes to improve maritime safety; however, as the world grew increasingly tumultuous, there would be many other ships who would unwillingly carry the majority of their crew and passengers to a watery grave. Just a few years after RMS Titanic's sinking, on the afternoon of May 7, 1915, RMS Lusitania was torpedoed by a U-boat off the coast of Ireland. She sunk in just eighteen minutes and with her, 1,198 passengers and crew in just eighteen minutes and sparked an international outcry that would play a part in swinging American public opinion against Imperial Germany and eventually, joining the war on the side of the Entente. You know of these two ships already, you've seen them in books, documentaries, they are the centre of many conspiracy theories and controversies. Both these ships and the loss of life that went with their sinking brought about enormous and lasting change to the entire world. These two names are storied and everyone knows what you're talking about when you say their names. What if I were to tell you that there was a ship, whose sinking cost more lives than both of these tragedies combined, and unlike Titanic or Lusitania, its story is not well known and only in recent years have efforts been made to bring this tale to light. This is the tragedy of HMT Lancastria. Launched as RMS Tyrrhenia made her maiden voyage on June 19, 1922. She was 16,243 t and 578 (176 m) long. Built for Anchor Line, a subsidiary of Cunard, she could carry 2,200 passengers in three classes at just under 17 knots. She was no Blue Ribband ship. Passengers complained that they couldn't pronounce Tyrrhenia, which, as any marketer will tell you, isn't a good thing. So, in 1924, when she was refitted for two classes, she was renamed Lancastria and started shuttling passengers between Liverpool and New York until 1932, by which time the Great Depression had taken hold and she served as a cruise ship in the Mediterranean and Northern Europe. At the outbreak of WW 2, Lancastria was used to ferry cargo until April 1940 when she was requisitioned as a troopship and redesignated Hired Military Transport (HMT) Lancastria. Her first job as a troopship was evacuating troops from the ill-fated Norway campaign. Before we move on with Lancastria's story, it's important to bring up Dunkirk for one important reason: not all British forces were at Dunkirk. Many also forget that there were Belgians and French among the evacuees there. The forces at Dunkirk were those that had been cut off from the south by the German's "race to the sea", leaving them isolated and stranded. In the rest of France were many thousands more, not only soldiers but British Nationals who wanted to get out of the war zone and back home and many French and Belgian troops who needed evacuation as well. There were three major operations for the evacuation of Franch: Operation Dynamo (Dunkirk), Operation Cycle: the evacuation from St. Valery and La Havre in upper Normandy; and Operation Ariel, the evacuation from numerous ports along the Atlantic coast. Operation Dynamo began May 26, 1940, and lasted until June 4th. Over 300,000 were successfully evacuated from Dunkirk but the ships and troops in the sea were bombed relentlessly by the Luftwaffe, costing many lives and sinking over 200 ships and small boats. Operation Cycle lasted from June 10th to the 13th and was conducted mostly at night, evacuating approximately 12,000 more British and French troops. Finally, Operation Ariel began on June 15th, and it was in this operation that Lancastria would take part. Up until June 14th, Lancastria had been in Liverpool undergoing a small overhaul. By June 17th, she had traveled to Saint-Nazaire under the command of Captain Rudolf Sharp. One of the largest ship in the flotilla assembled to evacuate over 60,000 troops that remained in the city, she was rated to carry about 1,700 passengers (some sources say 2,200) and 375 crew. However, Sharp was ordered to "load as many men as possible without regard to the limits set down under international law". By the afternoon, Captain sharp was told that over 6,700 were embarked. Among the military personnel were over 40 civilians, among them, Embassy staff, men from the Belgian aircraft manufacturer Avions Fairey, and their families. For the tired soldiers coming aboard, Lancastria was a refuge. After being on the run from the rampaging Panzers, bombarded by ceaseless bombing and haunted by the howling of Jericho Trumpets, they finally felt safe aboard the big ship. That soon ended at 13:50, when the port was hit by another air raid. As the captain watched an arial battle above and then watched a bomb strike the 20,000 ton orient liner SS Oronsay half a mile away, destroying her bridge. Lancastria was free to depart and the captain of the destroyer HMS Havelock, advised Captain Sharp to do so immediately. Captain Sharp, however, was worried about U-boats and didn't want to leave without a destroyer escort, but the destroyers were still needed to guard the port and so he decided to wait. Two hours passed as the nearly 7,000 people aboard ship sat crammed like sardines while Sharp decided to wait at anchor and leave with SS Oronsay, possibly to navigate her home with her charts and wireless room destroyed. Suddenly, air-raid sirens keened and eyes looked up at the sky again. At approximately 15:48, Ju 88s screamed overhead. The port's Hawker Hurricanes acting as air cover, were at the far end of their patrol line, 30 miles away. The bombers were free to descend on their prey and unleashed their payloads. Everyone could only look up in horror as the iron eggs fell. Bombs slammed onto Lancastria exploding and killing scores in the holds where men were taking shelter. The ship began to list as the hull buckled and water flooded the inside. A fourth bomb plunged right down her funnel and exploded in the engine room, causing tons of crude oil to leak out into the estuary. The call was given to "clear away boats" and everyone who heard headed for the lifeboats. Everyone who didn't.... well it wouldn't matter. Remember when I mentioned the Titanic earlier? Do you know what one of the lessons learned from that disaster? It was to make sure you had enough lifeboats for everyone on board. Lancastria had enough for a number of people she was rated to carry on, but she was far overloaded and the ship was sinking fast. To add insult to injury, some of the lifeboats had been destroyed in the bombing and even ones that seemed intact ended up sinking when they hit the water. The call was given: "every man for himself". Some men in life jackets jumped off the ship and broke their necks upon hitting the water, those that didn't die instantly were forced to swim in the 1,200 tons of crude oil leaking from the ship into the water. But even if you were somehow managing to stay alive then, remember, there's still enemy bombers flying above your heads. The Luftwaffe strafed the survivors with machinegun fire and then fired flares into the water, igniting the oil and turning the sea into an inferno, burning men alive. One of the civilian survivors recalled: "if there was hell, this was it." While this was happening, HMT Lancastria started to roll over. Passengers still on the deck, climbed over the rails onto the ship's side where they could see men trapped inside the portholes. Those unable to swim began singing. "They were singing There'll Always Be an England and Roll Out the Barrel." Said Harry Harding in a 2005 interview. He was 19 at the time. "For a long time afterwards, I didn't want to hear those songs. Then I looked and it had gone down so quickly there was nothing, just a void." Numerous small boats rushed to aid the survivors but it was not fast enough for some. As time passed, many succumbed to exhaustion or despair, slipping beneath the waves. About 2,477 were rescued in the end and brought home to Britain. The actual death toll is highly debated. Some estimates as low as 3,500 and some over 6,000. Some survivors even insist that over 9,000 had embarked on Lancastria when she was hit. Some of the survivors were carried home by the battered SS Oronsay, and her Captain, Norman Savage, navigated the ship home with nothing but a pocket compass, a sketch map, and a sextant. So why do we never hear of this great tragedy? Why is it only in recent years that this story has come to light? Well, Titanic and Lusitania were both well publicized, both in Britain and abroad, but Lancastria was the subject of a massive government coverup. You see, shortly after her sinking on June 17th, on June 22nd, 1940, the French signed an armistice with the Nazis. Operation Ariel would continue until June 25th and unofficial evacuations would continue into August, but that crushing news, which drowned out nearly all other events, is partly the reason Lancastria's sinking is forgotten, but that news also contributed to the more direct reason. Winston Churhill was afraid that news of the disaster would ruin British morale, especially in the wake of France's capitulation. Thus, the whole affair was part of a massive government coverup. Survivors and observers were forbidden to speak of it under penalty of court martial and publications of it were prohibited. This didn't stop the press association, however, with the event appearing in papers on July 15th in New York and on the 26th on the front page of some British papers. Despite this, the scope of the disaster was never revealed. In fact, documents on Lancastria remained classified by the Ministry of Defense until 2015. In 2005 the Lancastria Association of Scotland started a campaign for greater awareness and recognition of the event. As of today, the wreck is considered a War Grave and protected under French law. There are a few memorials of it around and gradually more people are becoming aware. It will never have the fame of the Titanic or the Lusitania, but we must never forget such a loss of life, and I hope that by posting this, I've done my part.
  3. Hello everybody, I have a naval-history question for all of who may be able to answer it. What warship was the first to sink in WW2? ORP Wicher on September the 3rd or was it one even earlier? And I'm asking specifically about warships. Passenger liners like the Athenia aren't my concern, because they probably have no Belle. Also I started a General history questions thread because I did not find one. Cheers!
  4. Posted this over in the World of Warships forums so I thought, hey why not? I love the history with these sisters so I'd love to get the chance to command them in game, especially Bermuda. Also if anyone knows how to remove this grey crap that would be great. So the crown colony class cruisers were treaty cruisers built under the second london naval treaty, there were 8 sisters in total under two groups, the Fiji (being the eldest sister) and the Ceylon group (being the upgraded versions) And were in many ways, a smaller version of the town class cruisers. We have: Fiji, the unlucky eldest, who got bombed to death before all her sisters could be built even after taking a torpedo and surviving years before hand, planes and Uboats are going to be very common in these little stories, she took multiple bomb hits from over 20 bomb attacks that lasted over 2 hours (unable to find exact number but it was a buttload) before being hit by a shockwave on her port side that tore off her bottom plates then forced her to come to a halt, having been fighting the entire time she had completely exhausted her AA ammunition and was hit by three more bombs, when the hole caused her to list on her port side it forced the crew to flee her as she turned over and sank.The DDs with her dropped floats and turned tale, 241 of her crew was killed and 523 were saved under the cover of night by RN DDs returning. She fought to the end and until her ammo ran dry, setting the example for her younger sisters that came after her, through her death she would also see her sisters were upgraded with more powerful AA guns. Nigeria, the tough tomboy, the one that survives despite being torped by Italian subs, mined, and shot at. She also captured one of the German's enigma machines, just after HMS Bulldog in fact. She was a part of operation pedestal. She was also one of the colony class to loose a main gun in favour of GLORIOUS BRITISH AA GUNS! She was sold to India in 1958, being renamed INS Mysore.....she would ram two destroyers during her time after. Mauritius, the one that needed refits before entering the front lines but made an impact when she got there. She was one of the colony class that lost her fourth turret for AA guns. She was a ship that covered her friends, covered normandy, participated in the landings of Italy, and carried out anti blockade runner duties. She was also one of the ships (along with many DDs) that mopped up German ships off the Brittany coast. Then returned to home fleet covering CVs and making anti shipping strikes herself, She would later fight against German destroyers greatly damaging DD Z31. Kenya, The pink lady (due to her camo) transported troops, gold, and escorted convoys. As well as sinking enemy supply and blockade running ships.Kenya also avoided damage in air attacks by the Germans on 27–28 March. She also took part in the Korean war as many of her sisters did Also her pompoms were removed and replaced with less glorious american AA guns. Trinidad, the ill fated. Who torpedoed herself During an engagement with three enemy destroyers due to a faulty torp and killed 32 of her own men.She did sink one of the German DDs however, after being repaired in Murmansk she set out to return home, she would never make it, for as she tried to return she would be attacked by over 20 german bombers loosing 63 more men including 20 men from the previously sunken cruiser Edinburgh irreversibly damaged she was scuttled by HMS matchless, a DD in her fleet. I would like to do more on this ship but this is about the whole class not just her, maybe next time. Jamaica, oh she's the famous one of the class isn't she? 'The galloping ghost of the Korean coast', 'The fighting J', she's the fighter and the survivor. Rather sad she got scrapped really. Anyway: HMS Jamaica along with her town class wingman(wingwoman?) HMS Sheffield would fight through the entire war and beyond she (and Sheffield) even became a movie stars in 'Battle of river plate' also she may have torpedoed a german battleship by the name of Scharnhorst along with Belfast (there's them town class wingwomen again) and a buttload of destroyers, sound familiar, after a good ol gunfight of course. She was also one of the colony class that lost her fourth gun for AA. And during the Korean war she was dubbed 'The galloping ghost of the Koran coast' most likely helped along by the fact the enemy could have sworn they sunk her three times before haha. HMS Gambia, AKA HMNZS Gambia, was (as you could probably tell) Given over to the New Zealand navy during WW2, to be returned after the wars end. She spent much of her time attacking or covering CVs on the IJN front and it's likely she fired some of the last shots of that war. (helped by the fact she was under attack when the ceasefire was being announced...) She would also sail with her sistership Bermuda after the war, as well as be upgraded along with her. Bermuda, The traveller, (the one that also fights off planes with a stick apparently) sorry I'm trying to contain my patriotism now (although let's be honest I could be playing god save the queen in the background and you wound never know.) She's the youngest of the Fiji group of the class, though not the youngest of the colony class. She made many trips to her namesake and we even have some items from her on my homeland, although some of the other items mysteriously went missing. (yeah right) She travelled often and participated in operation torch with that glorious wingwoman HMS Sheffield, where they both came under attack by Italian bombers, but she did her duty of covering the landings and escaped with not a scratch on her hull. She then returned to the Atlantic (where she belongs) for transport and glorious Uboat hunting duty in the Atlantic, Arctic, and the Bay of Biscay. Notably she had one of her turrets removed during her service time making her closer to the younger Ceylon group rather than the Fiji group she was actually in, why remove a gun you may ask? Well for more glorious British AA guns of course! Like her sister Gambia she was likely one of the last ships to take shots at the Japanese being attacked by aircraft after the ceasefire this time far after the war was done. (apparently even back then tourist wanted to be on Bermuda) Bermuda, being Bermuda, had no problems telling them off and going on her way to grab some prisoners of war up in shanghai. After the war she and her sister ship Gambia (remember her) would aid the island Zakynthos after a severe earthquake. After HMS Vanguard had her upgrade funds...redirected (ouch) Both Bermuda and her sister Gambia would get upgraded, their bridges were made better, their AA guns upgraded, because if there's one thing Bermuda is known for it's bringing down planes, and her secondary guns repositioned and upgraded because why bring down just planes when you can shoot ships too. Unfortunately she would spend the rest of her days practising with the other NATO navies before getting sent for the scraper. (yes I know this one was long sue me I love the ship and knew more about her, let me have my pride) And yes I did make a Bermuda triangle joke in there, honestly I realize it's not going away ever, and at this point I'm just gonna [edited]accept it..... Ceylon, the raider, she's the leader of the Ceylon group (that was redundant) she would have three triple 6 inchers rather than the four the Fiji group (originally) had, she was a raider alright spent most of her time bombarding the living crap out of enemy land positions. Even after WW2 she would continue to bombard the crap out of enemy land positions in the Korean war.....and then she would bombard Egyptian shore batteries later on in her life at port said. (note to self you will never win an argument with this woman) She would later be sold to Peru. HMS Uganda, or HMCS Uganda, or HMCS Quebec, As with her older sister Gambia she was used by another nation with close ties to england, although this time it was after the war was over. (or close enough to it) She would escort Churchill on his way to america, escort troops to Italy, bombard the Italians in operation husky. (seriously with these women) I found something interesting about this one, did you know she was hit with a radio controlled bomb? During 1943 she was hit by a german radio controlled glide bomb that went through all seven decks and her keel, then exploded in the water killing 16 men and knocking out all but one boiler, she would be towed to malta by a helpful little american tugboat by the increadably long and difficult to pronounce and spell name of USS Narragansett. After the repair she was given to the good old Canadians, since they asked so nice, and was sent to the pacific which sucked for the crew because she wasn't made for tropical conditions. (poor bastards had to be baking) After linking up with RN ships in the east of the world becoming the flagship of task force 57 due to her top grade radar (due to that refit I talked about earlier) she would join many bombardments (again don't argue with these women) against the islands in the area such as Formosa and Sakishima Gunto, she would come under kamikaze attack as well in the time she was with her taskforce. Joining the american third fleet after this she would become the only Canadian warship to fight against the IJN. This however caused backlash as the crew had joined up to fight Germans, not Japanese, and a new policy was passed shortly after for all HMCS ships in the pacific wither they wanted to fight or not if so had to revolunteer. So when the new vote came in to continue to fight against the IJN on the 7th of may 605 crew out of 907 refused to volunteer for continuing operations against Japan. As you can imagine the Royal Navy wasn't exactly flowers and sunshine over this especially as the ship couldn't be replaced until July that year, and an embarrassed RCN offered up HMCS Prince Roberts instead a ship that was then undergoing refit, so Uganda detached from the Americans in July and went on her way but on the way to pearl harbour one of her boilers malfunctioned and she limped her way in on August 4th to a....less than pleased American base, some men on which that felt as if the crew had abandoned the war. She would make it back homme to Canada the day the war against them ended. Newfoundland, the youngest sister, just like her older sister Nigeria she was torped by an Italian sub that blew her rudder off (I like a good aft to but....) and had 'repairs' and I say that lightly done at malta, Later, steering by her propellers only, and with the assistance of "jury rigged" sails between her funnels, she steamed to the Boston Navy Yard for major repairs. Then in 1944 she had to be repaired again when one of her own torps exploded killing one unlucky guy and damaging the ship. After this she went on to support the Australians' sixth division and served well in the Aitape-Wewak campaign, she would go on to attack an important Japanese naval base at Truk, and would later take part in the attack against mainland Japan On 9 August she took part in a bombardment of the Japanese city of Kamaishi. Newfoundland was part of a British force which took control of the naval base at Yokosuka. She was another ship of the crown colony class that was present for the Japanese surrender. After the war she would have an engagement with an Egyptian frigate that would net her a kill, she saved 69 of the survivors. She's another ship that ended up with Peru in the end renamed twice.(respectively Almirante Grau/Capitán Quiñones) Ok so that's the last of them (damn that took hours) now the colony class ships are kinda difficult to pin down weapon wise because of how the different ships got different AA upgrades but I'll do my best go get everything generally: Displacement:10,725 tons full load. 10,840 for the Ceylon group Weapons Fiji 12 (4X3) six inch guns (6-8 rpm) AA guns Fiji, (4X2) 4inch dual use guns, 8 2pr pom poms (2X4) and 2 torp launchers 21 inch torps (2X3) . Ceylon and upgraded: Or nine (3x3) six inchers 8 four inch dual use guns (4X2) 12 2pr pom poms (3X4) 2 torp launchers 21 inch torps (2X3) Length: 555ft 6inchs. Beam 62ft Speed: 31knots fiji group, 32 for Ceylon. Also spotter planes in the form of two submarine walrus spotters. Never on Fiji (the ship) or Kenya. (the pink one) Armor: 83 mm (3.3 in) deck: 51 mm (2.0 in) turrets: 51 mm (2.0 in), Director control tower: 102 mm (4.0 in) So there we are, the colony class cruisers, if you noticed something wrong or something I should have added give me a shout!
  5. I'm posting this topic to prove that even the smallest warships can have interesting histories and the story of HMCS Sackville (K181) is as colourful as any of the big girls. Sackville was laid down as Patrol Vessel 2 at the Saint John Shipbuilding and Drydock Company of Saint John, New Brunswick in early 1940, the second of the Flower-class corvettes ordered by the Royal Canadian Navy. She was launched on 15 May 1941 by Mrs. J. E. W. Oland, wife of the captain of the port, with the Mayor and entire town council of her namesake town in attendance. Sackville was commissioned into the Royal Canadian Navy on 30 December 1941 by Captain J. E. W. Oland, husband of the ship's sponsor.[2] Her first commanding officer, Lieutenant W. R. Kirkland, RCNR was appointed on 30 December but did not join Sackville until 2 January. That is when Sackville's problems began. Problem Captain, noob crew Sackville's three-month workup period beginning on 30 December, 1941, in St. Margaret's Bay. During this time a captain is supposed to get to know his crew, to drill them, establish watches, and conduct combat exercises, and in the case of the brand new corvette, put the ship through her paces to ensure the crew knew her 'personality'. Unfortunately, the logs of Sackville's first three months were almost barren. No mention of drills, closing up a watch, action stations or stand-to. This would be bad enough but for the crew, and especially the officers and ratings, things were even worse than that. Kirkland seemed like an able enough captain. As they escorted convoys and encountered a three-day storm, the captain "enjoyed the complete confidence of all on board and was considered an excellent seaman" said W. Creighton Reid, a Sub-Leiutenant on Sackville at the time. The problems arose when they arrived in port as Kirkland was a hard drinker and a very bad drunk. Upon returning to the ship he would be "verbally abusive, obstructive and quite irrational." Reid recalls that the drunk captain had a habit of calling him up in the middle of the night to ask him if he knew his duties as OOD. Contrary to common belief, Kirkland never drank at sea but he still suffered horrible hangovers. But was often ratty with the crew and frequently chewed them out. Things immediately got worse when they entered port when Kirkland would immediately return to the bars and get drunk all over again. Overtime this alienated him from the crew and created discontent aboard the ship. One reason Kirkland might have been having such a hard time could be the fact that few of Sackville's crew, even the officers had any experience at sea other than the navigator (which might have actually been Kirkland since Reid is "almost certain" that the captain [Kirkland] acted as navigator. Among the ratings, only the Coxswain had previous sea experience. Sackville's first mission? After being commissioned at the end of December 1941, Sackville moved to Halifax, arriving 12 January, 1942. According to the ship's log she went out to see for "patrol" on the 30th. The next day, the 31st, she was ordered, in company with her sister HMCS Weyburn (K173), to search for survivors of the torpedoed destroyer HMS Belmont, a Clemson-class destroyer, formerly USS Satterlee (DD-190). However, according to the ships log, no search action was taken, in company or otherwise. On 7 February she reported a "boiler leaking badly" and returned to Halifax the next day. The CO's patrol report dated 6 February was unrevealing about the ship's movements, conduct of the search or the engine trouble. Accordingly, Captain G.R. Miles, Captain (D), summoned Kirkland to his office for 0900 the following morning (Saturday). That morning, Kirkland did not appear to Captain Miles, instead sending an odd signal that he was sending a report. On Sunday he was drunk, abusing the XO, a leading signalman and 'blasting' another signalman about handling the signal from Captain Miles. That same day he sent another signal to Captain Miles, a memo reading "The signal was received. I failed to observe it." Captain Miles was fast losing his patience and ordered Kirkland to bring his ship's log the following morning. Next morning (Monday), Kirkland was drunk again, having realized the spot he was now in with Captain Miles and anticipating getting in spot of trouble as a result. He took out his frustrations on his crew, berating one of the sub-lieutenants and the 1st lieutenant for "letting him down". On top of that he came down hard on an Able Seaman (AB), calling him a failure and telling him to quit the Navy. Tuesday's log entry signed by Captain (D) admonished Kirkland for failing to show up the previous day. On Wednesday the drunken Kirkland abused the other Sub-Lieutenant. On 13 February, the ship was once again at sea "on escort" with no mention in the log of convoy designation, course, ships in company, speed, etc.16 February, Sackville was back in Halifax. The captain [Kirkland] was reported as drunk by the 1st Lieutenant and again on the 20th. However, this is disputed by Lieutenant Kenneth G. Clark who served with Reid as part of Sackville's first crew. He insists that the captain's drunkenness was never entered in any log. Mutiny on the Sackville? On the 28th, the ship returned to convoy escort duties. After six days at sea, Sackville returned to St. John's on 6 March. Kirkland came back aboard drunk. He turned the Coxswain out of his bunk and tore stripes off him in front of three junior ratings. This resulted in an altercation between Kirkland, his 1st Lieutenant and one Sub Lieutenant. On 9 March they were back at sea with a west-bound convoy (possibly ONS 68). On the 12th, the Greek ship SS Lili was torpedoed, and Sackville picked up 29 survivors from the frigid waters. Unable to find their convoy afterwards, Sackville returned to Halifax. It is popular myth that during or shortly after the event with SS Lili, Kirkland was relieved of command by the officers with support from the senior ratings and then locked drunk in his cabin until they reached Halifax. However, this is not the case according to Reid and Clark. According to them, there was never any thought of mutiny among the officers, although admits there was a considerable amount of discontent among all ranks. Board of inquiry After Sackville's return to Halifax, nearly the entire crew put in for transfers from Sackville. Combined with Kirkland's apparent conduct thus far, Captain Miles ordered a board of inquiry. Kirkland and his three officers were ordered in for an interview. At this time Reid recalls a sober Kirkland telling him "You'll be alright, but it will be the end for me." A board of inquiry was convened in Sackville's wardroom and all officers and ("almost") all ratings were interviewed. Kirkland was judged "unsuitable" and discharged that month. Sackville's crew was broken up and dispersed, assigned to other ships. I read about this part of Sackville's history from two articles written in 1995 in the HMCS Sackville Newsletter. The first article, from May 1995, was based on a report from 1993 by Commander Tony German (the irony isn't lost on me) and his research. The second article is from November 1995 and features "corrections" from two former crewmembers on Sackville, [Reid and Clark], regarding the "inaccuracies" in the first article. You can read the first and second articles here and here. Sackville's new crew HMCS Baddeck (K147) was undergoing repairs for engine problems, leaving her in harbor. Her entire ship's company was thus moved to Sackville to bring them quickly back out to sea. In his book "50 North", Lieutenant-Commander Alan Easton recalls that when meting with Captain Miles for the transfer, he gathered that there had been a breakdown in Sackville's "conduct of affairs." Sackville was also fitted with the Canadian made SW1C radar. Sackville back in action By 15 May, 1942, Sackville was assigned to Escort Group C-3 along with two sisters, HMCS Galt (K163) and HMCS Wetaskiwin (K175), replacing other corvettes in need of repair and refit. In August 1942 Sackville fought a series of fierce actions escorting Convoy ON-115. Deprived of air cover by heavy fog, the convoy was attacked by two successive U-boat "wolfpacks" off the coast of Newfoundland. On August 3, Sackville caught the German submarine U-43 on the surface and, as the submarine dived, made a series of depth charge attacks that blew U-43 out of the water. The submarine managed to survive but had to flee to Europe for repairs. The next day Sackville attacked U-704 as it dived, causing the submarine to break off its attack leaving Sackville to rescue two survivors from an abandoned but still floating merchant ship. Only a few hours later, Sackville detected U-552 on the surface with radar and landed a four-inch shell on the submarine's conning tower followed by a depth charge. U-552 nearly sank but managed to regain control and creep back to Germany heavily damaged. Sackville's attacks had played a key role in allowing the 41 ship convoy to escape with the loss of only two ships. Sackville continued in her escort role until starting an extensive refit at Thompson Bros. Machinery Co. Ltd. in Liverpool, Nova Scotia in January 1943. She returned to service in April and was assigned to Escort Group C-1 where she remained until reassigned to a new group Escort Group 9 in July. In September 1943, Sackville was an escort for the combined westbound convoys ON. 202 and ONS 18, the first victims of acoustic torpedo's. While these advanced torpedoes rarely worked right, the allies had (at the time) no defense against them. In addition to numerous merchant ships, four of the escorts were sunk, including frigates HMS Lagan, destroyer HMCS St. Croix, and British corvette HMS Polyanthus. Sackville chased after the U-boats and began firing depth charges when it experienced a huge explosion. It is believed that one of the depth charges detonated a torpedo alongside the ship, severely damaging Sackville's #1 boiler. Just after this, HMS Itchen who was carrying survivors from the first two ships to be sunk when she herself was torpedoed, creating such an explosion that pieces of her superstructure landed on HMCS Morden (K170). Escort Group C-1 was disbanded following the loss of three of its ships and the ship was assigned to group C-2, where the ship remained on Atlantic escort work until going for refit in Galveston, Texas in February 1944. Sackville's new job Returning to Halifax in May 1944 the vessel worked up in Bermuda and was then assigned to Escort Group C-2 which left for Derry escorting convoy HX-297 on 29 June 1944. At Derry the boilers were cleaned, which revealed a serious leak in one of them. Repairs were unsuccessful and the ship was no longer considered suitable for convoy escort work. Since the ship had only recently been modernized she was reassigned for training at HMCS King on 29 August 1944. However almost immediately afterwards the decision was made to convert her to a Loop Layer, laying anti-submarine indicator loops across harbour entrances, her damaged boiler removed to provide storage for the cable and the 4 inch gun replaced with a pair of cranes. Sackville never actually laid any cables as by the time her modifications were complete in 1945, the war in Europe was essentially over. Instead, her role was revised as a cable salvage ship. By this time, her designation had been changed from 181 to Z62. Patrick Onions, who had actually signed on and been trained to serve on HMCS Magnificent (CVL-21) in the Pacific (and ended up on a cable ship, wow that sucks), explains: "There were two reasons to salvage this cable. While some of it was covered with woven steel, most of it was lead covered and the lead was a valuable salvage. The other reason is that the fishermen were getting their down riggers and nets caught in the loops, with reported losses to their gear. It was not unusual for us to pick up a net, most times full of fish. What a mess this would cause. If we could track the owner of the net, he would get compensated for his loss but not the loss of his catch. The routine of the Sackville commenced by leaving harbour in the early hours of Monday morning in order to be on station by daybreak. We would spend three or four days at sea, grappling for the loops of cable, which were raised on deck, cut in two with each end buoyed off, then dropped back into the sea. In most cases we always seemed to make it back to port for the weekend. The next week was supposed to be spent retrieving the cable that we had buoyed off. The weather played an important part in the retrieval of the cable, and if it was too rough we would go off to grapple for more cable. Retrieving the cable was a nasty, dirty, stinky job. While steam hoses and water were sprayed on the cable before it would enter the winch to be led amidships where it traveled to the storage hold, a lot of seaweed and scum remained on the table. This made the job of coiling the cable in the storage hold a wet and slimy, miserable job. Also, the smell of rotten and decaying seaweed seemed to permeate through the ship. During my time aboard the ship we traveled to St. John, New Brunswick, and up to Sydney, Cape Breton, and major harbours in between to pick up cable. A considerable time was spent around Sable Island giving me a good understanding of how the currents and shifting sands have claimed so many ships around the Island." One overlooked duty of HMCS Sackville Z62 was the final part she played as a Navy ship in WW 2. Sackville was part of a flotilla that went out to capture U-190 and U-889 who had been spotted cruising on the surface. With a huge array of Canadian warships surrounding them, the two subs surrendered rather quickly. Enough German crews were left on the subs to operate them while the rest were dispersed throughout the flotilla. Sackville took several German officers on board. Patrick Onions recalls: "As a young seaman coming face to face with the enemy, I can only remember the utter disrespect and arrogance they showed towards us, and as we escorted them towards the Ward Room, they spat at our feet." You can read all about Patrick Onion's time on Sackville here. Sackville retired from the navy Sackville was paid off in April 1946 and laid up in reserve in May of the same year. Most Flower-class corvettes were scrapped shortly after the war, however Sackville was laid up in reserve. She was reactivated in 1952 and converted to a research vessel for the Department of Marine and Fisheries. The armament was removed, the hull repainted black in place of the original dazzle camouflage and the new pennant number 532 painted on the hull (changed to 113 in the late 1950s). A laboratory was built on the aft superstructure in 1964 and the bridge enclosed in 1968. She remained in service until December 1982, with her last cruise in July 1982. A rather long career for an old corvette. Sackville saved by a hurricane (Museum ship) The original intention had been to acquire HMCS Louisburg, which had been sold to the Dominican Republic and renamed Juan Alejandro Acosta but this vessel was wrecked (along with another Flower-class corvette - Cristobal Colon, the former HMCS Lachute) by Hurricane David in 1979. This left Sackville as the sole remaining Flower-class corvette. The ship was transferred to the Canadian Naval Corvette Trust (now the Canadian Naval Memorial Trust) on 28 October 1983 and restored to her 1944 appearance (apart from minor details in her camouflage and the presence of the "barber pole" red and white pattern around her funnel which had been removed before 1944). It had originally been planned to restore the ship to her 1942 appearance but this proved too expensive. In 1988, Sackville was designated a National Historic Site of Canada, due to her status as one of the last Flower-class corvettes known to exist. Conclusion So yes as you can see this little ship had quite a colourful and varied career, both as a warship and in other roles, it's not just the big girls. I know it will be a long time before Sackville ever appears in VB if she ever does, but I figured she deserved a little limelight and it makes good reading. I hope you enjoyed reading this little blurb of mine.
  6. Yes even Corvettes had mascots apparently. I found on youtube a newsreal about life on a Corvette. It's quite simple and has a propaganda lean on it but it's enough to give a very basic look at Corvette life. Considering the convoy supposedly came under air attack, the only places I can think of where that would happen to a convoy escorted by Corvettes might be one of the Arctic convoys or one to the Mediterranean. Just thought I would share this with the community. The close up look at Corvettes isn't something they show on a lot of TV documentaries. Huge scores of these little ships were built. Canada alone built over 120 vessels of the ​Flower-class. These ships were based on old whaling vessels, no ideal for a warship and they had reciprocating engines too, making them no faster, sometimes even slower, than the ships they were escorting. Despite so many being built only one remains. HMCS Sackville (K181) is the only surviving Flower-class corvette. She is currently docked in Halifax. For more info, watching this video from iChase gaming.