Allied Warships

HMS Boadicea (H 65)

Destroyer of the B class

HMS Boadicea during World War Two

NavyThe Royal Navy
PennantH 65 
Built byHawthorn Leslie & Co. (Hebburn-on-Tyne, U.K.) 
Ordered4 Mar 1929 
Laid down11 Jul 1929 
Launched23 Sep 1930 
Commissioned7 Apr 1931 
Lost13 Jun 1944 
Loss position50° 26'N, 2° 34'W

On 13 June 1944 HMS Boadicea (Lt.Cdr. Frederick William Hawkins, RN) was sunk by German aircraft 12 miles south-west of Portland Bill in position 50º26'N, 02º34'W while supporting the Normandy landings.


Commands listed for HMS Boadicea (H 65)

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1Lt.Cdr. George Bodley Kingdon, RN16 Dec 1938mid 1940

2Lt.Cdr. Michael Wilfred Tomkinson, RN10 Jan 1941Feb 1941
3A/Cdr. Errol Concanon Lloyd Turner, RNFeb 19414 Jul 1941
4Cdr. Harold Pitcairn Henderson, RN4 Jul 1941Feb 1942
5Lt.Cdr. Francis Cumberland Brodrick, RNFeb 194228 Dec 1943
6Lt.Cdr. Frederick William Hawkins, RN28 Dec 194313 Jun 1944 (+)

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Notable events involving Boadicea include:

HMS Boadicea now lies at 50m upright on the seabed, her bows blown off, but her stern and aft mid section intact. Depth charges and torpedo tubes are clearly visible, as is her aft gun although the armour plating has gone. (1)

12 Oct 1939
HMS Oberon (Lt.Cdr. H.C. Cumberbatch, RN) departed Dundee for Portland. She made part of the passage in convoy FS 20. During passage through the Channel she was escorted by HMS Boadicea (Lt.Cdr. G.B. Kingdon, RN) and later by HMS Saladin (Lt.Cdr. L.J. Dover, RN). (2)

7 Nov 1939
At 1648 hours, HMS Cachalot (Lt.Cdr. S.W.F. Bennetts, RN), made rendez-vous with HMS Seal (Lt.Cdr. R.P. Lonsdale, RN), HMS L 26 (Lt.Cdr. F.W. Lipscomb, OBE, RN) and their escort towards Portsmouth, HMS Boadicea (Lt.Cdr. G.B. Kingdon, RN) near the North Goodwin light vessel. (3)

21 Nov 1939
Around 2100 hours the British destroyers HMS Griffin (Lt.Cdr. J. Lee-Barber, RN with Capt. G.E. Creasy, MVO, RN aboard), HMS Gipsy (Lt.Cdr. N.J. Crossley, RN), HMS Keith (Cdr. H.T.W. Pawsey, OBE, RN), HMS Boadicea (Lt.Cdr. G.B. Kingdon, RN) and the Polish destroyer Grom (Lt.Cdr. A. Hulewicz, ORP) were ordered to leave Harwich and establish a patrol in the North Sea. Shortly before that, a German He 59 seaplane dropped two magnetic mines nearby, but there was no time for searching. HMS Gipsy hit one of those mines which tore her into two pieces. Most of the survivors were picked up by HMS Griffin and HMS Keith. (1)

6 Feb 1940
HMS Boadicea (Lt.Cdr. G.B. Kingdon, RN) and HMS Beagle (Lt.Cdr. R.H. Wright, RN) sail from Boulogne with the Prime Minister, War cabinet and Chief of Staff for Dover.

1 Jul 1941
HMS H 34 (Lt. H. Winter, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Lough Foyle with HMS Boadicea (A/Cdr. E.C.L. Turner, RN), HMS Beagle (Cdr. R.T. White, DSO and Bar, RN), HMS Roxborough (Lt. V.A. Wight-Boycott, OBE, RN), HMS Orchis (T/Lt. H. Vernon, RNR) and aircraft. (4)

15 Nov 1941
HMS H 50 (Lt. E.T. Stanley, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Lough Foyle with HMS Foxhound (Lt.Cdr. G.H. Peters, DSC, RN) and HMS Boadicea (Cdr. H.P. Henderson, RN). (5)

17 Nov 1941
HMS H 44 (Lt. J.S. Stevens, DSC, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Lough Foyle with HMS Folkestone (A/Cdr. D.E.G. Wemyss, RN), HMS Weston (Cdr.(Retd.) J.G. Sutton, RN) and HMS Boadicea (Cdr. H.P. Henderson, RN). (6)

6 Feb 1942
HMS Olympus (Lt.Cdr. H.G. Dymott, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Gibraltar with HMS Boadicea (Cdr. H.P. Henderson, RN) and HMS Convolvulus (T/Lt. R.C. Connell, RNR) and later with HMS Wivern (Cdr. M.D.C. Meyrick, RN) and HMS Coltsfoot (T/Lt. the Hon. W.K. Rous, RNVR). (7)

6 Nov 1942
'Force H' made up of HMS Nelson, HrMs Isaac Sweers (Capt. W. Harmsen, RNN), HMS Porcupine (Cdr. G.S. Stewart, RAN), HMS Brilliant (Lt.Cdr. A.G. Poe, RN), HMS Boadicea (Lt.Cdr. F.C. Brodrick, RN), HMS Avon Vale (Lt.Cdr. P.A.R. Withers, DSO, RN), HMS Farndale (Cdr. D.P. Trentham, RN), HMS Puckeridge (Lt. J.C. Cartwright, DSC, RN) and HMS Calpe (Lt.Cdr. H. Kirkwood, DSC, RN) arrived at Gibraltar.

While taking up her berth HMS Nelson fouled the merchant vessel Empire Gawain and the minesweepers HMS Bude (Lt. F.A.J. Andrew, RN) and HMS Brixham (Lt. G.A. Simmers, RNR). HMS Nelson sustained some minor damage. (8)

11 Nov 1942
The British troop transport Viceroy of India was torpedoed and damaged by German U-boat U-407 34 nautical miles north-west of Oran, Algeria in position 36°26'N, 00°24'W. She was taken in tow by HMS Boadicea (Lt.Cdr. F.C. Brodrick, RN) but sank in position 36°24'N, 00°35'W. Boadicea picked up 450 survivors.

11 May 1943
HMS Sceptre (Lt. I.S. McIntosh, MBE, DSC, RN) conducted attack exercises in the Clyde area during which HMS Boadicea (Lt.Cdr. F.C. Brodrick, RN) and HMS Lancaster (T/A/Lt.Cdr. J.R. Clarke, DSC, RNVR) served as the targets. These included night exercises. (9)

18 Jul 1943
At 07.56 hours on 18 July 1943, the unescorted British passenger ship Incomati was torpedoed and damaged by German U-boat U-508 about 200 nautical miles south of Lagos. At 08.18 hours, the U-boat began shelling the ship, setting her on fire and left the wreck in sinking condition. The ship finally sank in position 03°09'N, 04°15'E. One crew member was lost. The master, 101 crew members, eight gunners and 112 passengers were picked up by the British destroyer HMS Boadicea (Lt.Cdr. F.C. Brodrick, RN) and the British sloop HMS Bridgewater (Cdr. N.W.H. Weekes, OBE, RN) and landed at Takoradi.

24 Mar 1944
HMS Porpoise (Lt.Cdr. H.A.L. Marsham, OBE, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Larne with HMS Keppel (Cdr. I.J. Tyson, DSC, RD, RNR), HMS Boadicea (Lt.Cdr. F.W. Hawkins, RN), HMS Whitehall (Lt.Cdr. P.J. Cowell, DSC, RN) and Escort Groups 6 and 23. (10)

Media links

British destroyers & frigates

Norman Friedman

Destroyers of World War Two

Whitley, M. J.


  1. Personal communication
  2. ADM 173/15803
  3. ADM 199/1827
  4. ADM 173/16762
  5. ADM 173/16795
  6. ADM 173/16787
  7. ADM 173/17319
  8. ADM 199/662
  9. ADM 173/18003
  10. ADM 173/18586

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

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