Ships hit by U-boats


British Motor tanker

Photo Courtesy of Library of Contemporary History, Stuttgart

Type:Motor tanker
Tonnage7,468 tons
Completed1927 - Palmers Shipbuilding & Iron Co Ltd, Jarrow 
OwnerAnglo-Saxon Petroleum Co Ltd, London 
Date of attack25 Aug 1940Nationality:      British
FateSunk by U-57 (Erich Topp)
Position56° 22'N, 7° 55'W - Grid AM 5313
Complement57 (49 dead and 8 survivors).
ConvoyHX-65B (straggler)
RouteTrinidad - Bermuda - Glasgow 
Cargo9546 tons of Admiralty fuel oil 
History Completed in May 1927 
Notes on event

At 19.48 hours on 25 Aug 1940, U-57 fired a spread of two torpedoes at Pecten (Master Herbert Edward Dale), straggling less than a mile astern of convoy HX-65B due to engine troubles about 75 miles north of Tory Island. Only a few minutes after the tanker had been urged by HMS Gladiolus (K 34) (LtCdr H.M.C. Sanders, RNR) to get back on her station in convoy, the ship was hit on the starboard side in the engine room and just abaft the bridge and disappeared in cloud of smoke, sinking by the stern within 90 seconds. The master and 48 crew members (the ship was armed with one 12pdr and one 4in gun) were lost. The first radio officer, an apprentice and six Chinese crew members rescued themselves on rafts that floated free and were picked up after two hours by the British steam merchant Torr Head from the same convoy, while HMS Gladiolus and HMS Westcott (D 47) (LtCdr W.F.R. Segrave, RN) unsuccessfully attacked the U-boat. The survivors were later transferred to the British armed trawler HMS Robina and landed at Belfast.

On boardWe have details of 50 people who were on board

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