Allied Warships

HMS Diana (H 49)

Destroyer of the D class

NavyThe Royal Navy
TypeDestroyer
ClassD 
PennantH 49 
Built byPalmers Shipbuilding & Iron Co Ltd (Jarrow-on-Tyne, U.K.) 
Ordered2 Feb 1931 
Laid down12 Jun 1931 
Launched16 Jun 1932 
Commissioned20 Dec 1932 
End service6 Sep 1940 
History

HMS Diana was transferred to the Royal Canadian Navy as HMCS Margaree on 6 September 1940.  

Career notesBecame the Canadian destroyer Margaree

Commands listed for HMS Diana (H 49)

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CommanderFromTo
1Lt.Cdr. Edward Gerard Le Geyt, RN20 Jun 19396 Sep 1940

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Notable events involving Diana include:


22 Oct 1939
Around 1600 hours, HMS Duchess (Lt.Cdr. R.C.M. White, RN) arrived in the Kithera Channel for contraband patrol where she took over from HMS Diana (Lt.Cdr. E.G. Le Geyt, RN). (1)

24 Oct 1939
HMS Warspite (Capt. V.A.C. Crutchley, VC, DSC, RN), HMS Arethusa (Capt. Q.D. Graham, RN), HMS Penelope (Capt. G.D. Yates, RN), HMS Dainty (Cdr. F.M. Walton, RN), HMS Defender (Lt.Cdr. St.J.R.J. Tyrwhitt, RN) and HMS Diana (Lt.Cdr. E.G. Le Geyt, RN) conducted gunnery exercises off Alexandria. HMS Warspite and the destroyers returned to harbour in the evening. (2)

25 Oct 1939
HMS Ramillies (Capt. H.T. Baillie-Grohman, OBE, DSO, RN), HMS Penelope (Capt. G.D. Yates, RN), HMS Dainty (Cdr. F.M. Walton, RN), HMS Defender (Lt.Cdr. St.J.R.J. Tyrwhitt, RN) and HMS Diana (Lt.Cdr. E.G. Le Geyt, RN) conducted exercises off Alexandria. (3)

27 Oct 1939
HMS Ramillies (Capt. H.T. Baillie-Grohman, OBE, DSO, RN), HMS Penelope (Capt. G.D. Yates, RN), HMS Defender (Lt.Cdr. St.J.R.J. Tyrwhitt, RN) and HMS Diana (Lt.Cdr. E.G. Le Geyt, RN) conducted exercises off Alexandria.

29 Oct 1939
HMS Warspite (Capt. V.A.C. Crutchley, VC, DSC, RN) departed Alexandria for Malta. She was escorted by HMS Dainty (Cdr. F.M. Walton, RN) and HMS Diana (Lt.Cdr. E.G. Le Geyt, RN). (3)

31 Oct 1939
HMS Warspite (Capt. V.A.C. Crutchley, VC, DSC, RN), HMS Dainty (Cdr. F.M. Walton, RN) and HMS Diana (Lt.Cdr. E.G. Le Geyt, RN) arrived at Malta from Alexandria. (3)

4 Nov 1939
HMS Warspite (Capt. V.A.C. Crutchley, VC, DSC, RN) departed Malta for Gibraltar. She was escorted by HMS Dainty (Cdr. F.M. Walton, RN) and HMS Diana (Lt.Cdr. E.G. Le Geyt, RN). (4)

6 Nov 1939
HMS Warspite (Capt. V.A.C. Crutchley, VC, DSC, RN), HMS Dainty (Cdr. F.M. Walton, RN) and HMS Diana (Lt.Cdr. E.G. Le Geyt, RN) arrived at Gibraltar.

After fuelling HMS Warspite departed Gibraltar for Halifax escorted by HMS Dainty, HMS Diana, HMS Ilex (Lt.Cdr. P.L. Saumarez, RN) and HMS Isis (Cdr. J.C. Clouston, RN). (4)

7 Nov 1939
At 0815 hours, HMS Dainty (Cdr. F.M. Walton, RN) and HMS Diana (Lt.Cdr. E.G. Le Geyt, RN) parted company with HMS Warspite (Capt. V.A.C. Crutchley, VC, DSC, RN), HMS Ilex (Lt.Cdr. P.L. Saumarez, RN) and HMS Isis (Cdr. J.C. Clouston, RN).

HMS Dainty and HMS Diana then returned to Gibraltar where they arrived around 1700 hours. (4)

1 Dec 1939
HMS Otway (Cdr. H.R. Conway, RN) conducted exercises off Malta together with HMS Diana (Lt.Cdr. E.G. Le Geyt, RN). (5)

11 Dec 1939
HMS Otway (Cdr. H.R. Conway, RN) conducted exercises off Malta together with HMS Diana (Lt.Cdr. E.G. Le Geyt, RN). (5)

30 Jan 1940

Convoy TC 3.

This convoy of troopships departed Halifax on 30 January 1940 for the Clyde where it arrived on 7 February 1940.

The convoy was made up of the following troopships / liners; Aquitania (British, 44786 GRT, built 1914, carrying 2733 troops), Chobry (Polish, 11442 GRT, built 1939, number of troops unknown), Empress of Australia (British, 21833 GRT, built 1914, carrying 1577 troops), Empress of Britain (British, 42348 GRT, built 1931, carrying 1588 troops) and Monarch of Bermuda (British, 22424 GRT, built 1931, carrying 1334 troops),

Close escort was provided on leaving Halifax by the battleship HMS Valiant (Capt. H.B. Rawlings, OBE, RN), light cruiser HMS Enterprise (Capt. H.J. Egerton, RN) and the destroyers HMS Hunter (Lt.Cdr. L. de Villiers, RN), HMCS Fraser (Cdr. W.N. Creery, RCN), HMCS Ottawa (Capt. G.C. Jones, RCN), HMCS Restigouche (Lt.Cdr. H.N. Lay, RCN) and HMCS St. Laurent (Lt.Cdr. H.G. de Wolf, RCN). These Canadian destroyers remained with the convoy until the afternoon of February 1st when they set course to return to Halifax. HMS Enterprise remained with the convoy until about 25°W when she parted company with the convoy in the afternoon 4 February to return to Halifax.

When the convoy approached the British isles, the destroyers HMS Faulknor (Capt. A.F. de Salis, RN), HMS Fame (Cdr. P.N. Walter, RN), HMS Fearless (Cdr. K.L. Harkness, RN), HMS Firedrake (Lt.Cdr. S.H. Norris, DSC, RN), HMS Foresight (Lt.Cdr. G.T. Lambert, RN), HMS Fortune (Cdr. E.A. Gibbs, DSO, RN), HMS Foxhound (Lt.Cdr. G.H. Peters, RN), HMS Fury (Cdr. G.F. Burghard, RN), HMS Daring (Cdr. S.A. Cooper, RN), HMS Delight (Cdr. M. Fogg-Elliot, RN) and HMS Diana (Lt.Cdr. E.G. Le Geyt, RN) departed the Clyde on 2 February. They joined the convoy in the morning of the 5th with the exception of HMS Delight which had been detached. She was replaced by the destroyers HMS Kelvin (Lt.Cdr. J.L. Machin, RN) and HMS Kingston (Lt.Cdr. P. Somerville, RN).

The convoy arrived in the Clyde on the 7th. (6)

2 Feb 1940
HMS Faulknor (Capt. A.F. de Salis, RN), HMS Fame (Cdr. P.N. Walter, RN), HMS Fearless (Cdr. K.L. Harkness, RN), HMS Firedrake (Lt.Cdr. S.H. Norris, DSC, RN), HMS Foresight (Lt.Cdr. G.T. Lambert, RN), HMS Fortune (Cdr. E.A. Gibbs, DSO, RN), HMS Foxhound (Lt.Cdr. G.H. Peters, RN), HMS Fury (Cdr. G.F. Burghard, RN), HMS Daring (Cdr. S.A. Cooper, RN), HMS Delight (Cdr. M. Fogg-Elliot, RN) and HMS Diana (Lt.Cdr. E.G. Le Geyt, RN) departed the Clyde for convoy escort duty.

See the event ' Convoy TC 3 ' for 30 January 1940 for more information.

10 Feb 1940
HMS Daring (Cdr. S.A. Cooper, RN), the tanker British Governor (6840 GRT, built 1926) and the former German merchant vessel Ilsenstein (8216 GRT, built 1904) arrived at Scapa Flow.

HMS Daring, with British Governor departed Scapa Flow later the same day for Rosyth. They were joined on the 10th by the destroyer HMS Diana (Lt.Cdr. E.G. Le Geyt, RN) and the tanker Housatonic (5559 GRT, built 1919) which came from Muckle Flugga. (7)

11 Feb 1940
HMS Daring (Cdr. S.A. Cooper, RN), HMS Diana (Lt.Cdr. E.G. Le Geyt, RN) and the tankers British Governor (6840 GRT, built 1926) and Housatonic (5559 GRT, built 1919) arrived at Rosyth. (7)

21 Feb 1940
HMS Diana (Lt.Cdr. E.G. Le Geyt, RN) picks up 35 men from the British merchant Loch Maddy that was torpedoed and damaged by German U-boat U-57 about 20 nautical miles south-south-east of Copinsay, Orkney Islands.

30 Apr 1940
HMS Manchester (Capt. H.A. Packer, RN) and HMS Birmingham (Capt. A.C.G. Madden, RN) departed Scapa Flow together for Aandalsnes where they were to evacuate troops. They were escorted by the destroyers HMS Inglefield (Capt. P. Todd, RN), HMS Diana (Lt.Cdr. E.G. Le Geyt, RN) and HMS Delight (Cdr. M. Fogg-Elliott, RN). (8)

1 May 1940
In the evening, HMS Manchester (Capt. H.A. Packer, RN), HMS Birmingham (Capt. A.C.G. Madden, RN), HMS Inglefield (Capt. P. Todd, RN), HMS Diana (Lt.Cdr. E.G. Le Geyt, RN) and HMS Delight (Cdr. M. Fogg-Elliott, RN) arrived off Aandalsnes to evacuate troops. At Aandalsnes they joined the AA cruiser HMS Calcutta (Capt. D.M. Lees, DSO, RN), destroyers HMS Somali (Capt. R.S.G. Nicholson, DSO, DSC, RN), HMS Mashona (Cdr. W.H. Selby, RN) and the sloop HMS Auckland (Cdr. J.G. Hewitt, RN). (9)

2 May 1940
After having taken on board troops, HMS Manchester (Capt. H.A. Packer, RN), HMS Birmingham (Capt. A.C.G. Madden, RN), HMS Inglefield (Capt. P. Todd, RN) and HMS Delight (Cdr. M. Fogg-Elliott, RN) set course to return to Scapa Flow where they arrived around 0015/3. HMS Diana (Lt.Cdr. E.G. Le Geyt, RN) was detached to transport the Norwegian General Ruga and his staff to Tromsö, where she arrived at 1100/3. HMS Somali (Capt. R.S.G. Nicholson, DSO, DSC, RN) had gone ahead and arrived at Scapa Flow at 1630/2. HMS Calcutta (Capt. D.M. Lees, DSO, RN) and HMS Mashona (Cdr. W.H. Selby, RN) arrived at Scapa Flow at 0730/3 and finally HMS Auckland (Cdr. J.G. Hewitt, RN) arrived there at 1015/3. (9)

21 Jun 1940
HMS Manchester (Capt. H.A. Packer, RN), HMS York (Capt. R.H. Portal, DSC, RN), HMS Sheffield (Capt. C.A.A. Larcom, RN) and HMS Birmingham (Capt. A.C.G. Madden, RN) departed Rosyth escorted by the destroyer HMS Gallant (Lt.Cdr. C.P.F. Brown, RN) to rendez-vous with HMS Sussex (Capt A.R. Hammick, RN) and HMS Newcastle (Capt. J. Figgins, RN) at sea and then to join HMS Renown (Capt. C.E.B. Simeon, RN), HMS Repulse (Capt. Sir W.G. Tennant, CB, MVO, RN) and the destroyers HMS Inglefield (Capt. P. Todd, RN), HMS Zulu (Cdr. J.S. Crawford, RN), HMS Maori (Cdr. H.T. Armstrong, RN), HMS Mashona (Cdr. W.H. Selby, RN), HMS Forester (Lt.Cdr. E.B. Tancock, RN), HMS Escort (Lt.Cdr. J. Bostock, RN) and HMS Diana (Lt.Cdr. E.G. Le Geyt, RN).

The German battlecruiser Scharnhorst had been sighted leaving Trondheim southwards escorted by four destroyers and four torpedo-boats. The Germans however retreated inside the fjords and the British ships were recalled. (10)

22 Jul 1940
Around 1700 hours HMS Illustrious (Capt. D.W. Boyd, DSC, RN) and HMS Fiji (Capt. W.G. Benn, RN) met their destroyer screen that was to escort them for the final part of the voyage to the Clyde. This destroyer screen was made up of HMS Inglefield (Capt. P. Todd, RN), HMS Diana (Lt.Cdr. E.G. Le Geyt, RN) and HMS Watchman (Lt.Cdr. E.C.L. Day, RN).

Around 2100 hours that evening HMS Diana hit a whale and had her Asdic dome damaged and out of action. Also she was taking on water forward and had her speed reduced to 22 knots. (11)

23 Jul 1940
Shortly before 2000 hours HMS Illustrious (Capt. D.W. Boyd, DSC, RN) and HMS Fiji (Capt. W.G. Benn, RN) and their destroyer screen made up of HMS Inglefield (Capt. P. Todd, RN), HMS Diana (Lt.Cdr. E.G. Le Geyt, RN) and HMS Watchman (Lt.Cdr. E.C.L. Day, RN) arrived off Greenock. (11)

Media links


British destroyers & frigates

Norman Friedman


Destroyers of World War Two

Whitley, M. J.

Sources

  1. ADM 53/108384
  2. ADM 199/389
  3. ADM 53/108195
  4. ADM 53/108196
  5. ADM 173/15881
  6. ADM 199/367 + ADM 199/393
  7. ADM 199/2552
  8. ADM 53/112663 + ADM 186/798
  9. ADM 53/112664 + ADM 186/798
  10. ADM 53/112665 + ADM 199/361
  11. ADM 53/112216

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


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