Allied Warships

HMS Carron (R 30)

Destroyer of the Ca class

NavyThe Royal Navy
TypeDestroyer
ClassCa 
PennantR 30 
Built byScotts Shipbuilding & Engineering Co. (Greenock, Scotland) 
Ordered24 Mar 1942 
Laid down26 Nov 1942 
Launched28 Mar 1944 
Commissioned6 Nov 1944 
End service 
History

Arrived at Inverkeithing to be broken up for scrap on 4 April 1967.  

Former nameHMS Strenuous

Commands listed for HMS Carron (R 30)

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CommanderFromTo
1Lt.Cdr. John Valentine Wilkinson, DSC, RN25 Sep 1944mid 1946

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Notable events involving Carron include:


20 Nov 1944
HMS Vengeful (Lt. A.S. Melville-Ross, DSC, RN) conducted A/S exercises at/off Scapa Flow with HMS Carron (Lt.Cdr. J.V. Wilkinson, DSC, RN) and HMS Cassandra (Cdr. P.F. Powlett, DSO and Bar, DSC, RN). (1)

22 Nov 1944
HMS Vengeful (Lt. A.S. Melville-Ross, DSC, RN) conducted A/S exercises at/off Scapa Flow with HMS Ulster (Lt.Cdr. R.J. Hanson, DSO and Bar, DSC, RN), HMS Carron (Lt.Cdr. J.V. Wilkinson, DSC, RN), HNoMs Karmøy and HMS Hazel (T/Lt. J.D. Daniel, RNVR). (1)

7 Dec 1944
Around 2050A/7, HMS Kent (Capt. G.A.B. Hawkins, DSC, MVO, RN) departed Scapa Flow for bombardment exercises in the Clyde area. She was escorted until 0230A/8 by the destroyers HMS Ulster (Lt.Cdr. R.J. Hanson, DSO and Bar, DSC, RN) and HMS Carron (Lt.Cdr. J.V. Wilkinson, DSC, RN). (2)

14 Dec 1944
HMS Sibyl (Lt. H.R. Murray, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Scapa Flow together with HMS Carron (Lt.Cdr. J.V. Wilkinson, DSC, RN) and HNoMS Stord (Lt.Cdr. H. Øi). (3)

9 Jan 1945
During the afternoon and evening, the heavy cruiser HMS Norfolk (Capt. J.G.Y. Loveband, RN, flying the flag of Rear-Admiral R.R. McGrigor, CB, DSO, RN), light cruiser HMS Bellona (Capt. C.F.W. Norris, DSO, RN), fast minelayer HMS Apollo (Capt. J.A. Grindle, CBE, RN) and some destroyers (most likely HMS Onslow (Capt. H.W.S. Browning, OBE, RN), HMS Onslaught (Cdr. the Hon. A. Pleydell-Bouverie, RN), HMS Orwell (Lt.Cdr. J.R. Gower, DSC, RN), HMS Zealous (Cdr. R.F. Jessel, DSO, DSC and Bar, RN) and HMS Carron (Lt.Cdr. J.V. Wilkinson, DSC, RN)) conducted exercises off Scapa Flow. (4)

10 Jan 1945

Operations Spellbinder and Gratis

Operation Spellbinder was carried out in two parts, part I was an anti-shipping raid in the Egersund area and part II was a minelay near Utsira Island.

Operation Gratis was the laying of an air laid minefield in Karm Sund.

Around 2200A/10, ' Force 1 ', made up of the heavy cruiser HMS Norfolk (Capt. J.G.Y. Loveband, RN, flying the flag of Rear-Admiral R.R. McGrigor, CB, DSO, RN), light cruiser HMS Bellona (Capt. C.F.W. Norris, DSO, RN) and the destroyers HMS Onslow (Capt. H.W.S. Browning, OBE, RN), HMS Onslaught (Cdr. the Hon. A. Pleydell-Bouverie, RN) and HMS Orwell (Lt.Cdr. J.R. Gower, DSC, RN) and ' Force 2 ', made up of the fast minelayer HMS Apollo (Capt. J.A. Grindle, CBE, RN) and the destroyers HMS Zealous (Cdr. R.F. Jessel, DSO, DSC and Bar, RN) and HMS Carron (Lt.Cdr. J.V. Wilkinson, DSC, RN) departed Scapa Flow for operation Spellbinder.

They proceeded in company until 1100A/11 when they split up to the north of the Shetlands. ' Force 2 ' remained in that vicinity until 1508A/11 when course and speed were adjusted so as to arrive in the laying position at midnight. ' Force 1 ' set course for the Egersund area, aiming to arrive off the coast at about 2215A/11.

HMS Apollo, HMS Zealous and HMS Carron approached the Norwegian coast from the north-westward at 30 knots, in fine clear weather, making use of the beam of the enemy consol beacon situated in position 58°37'5"N, 05°37'8"E. Course was altered to 090° at 2336A/11 and Utsira light was seen shortly afterwards.

Starshell from ' Force 1 ', engaged 100 miles to the southward, was observed at 2343A/11. Five minutes later ' Force 2 ' reduced speed to 20 knots and HMS Zealous and HMS Carron proceeded ahead to make a smokescreen between the laying position and them mainland.

Between 2357A/11 and 0020A/12, HMS Apollo laid 156 mines in three lines as follows;
Line 1 of 52 mines - Between 59°15'00"N, 05°01'06"E and 59°15'00"N, 05°04'21"E.
Line 2 of 55 mines - Between 59°14'51"N, 05°06'06"E and 59°13'39"N, 05°00'00"E.
Line 3 of 49 mines - Between 59°13'15"N, 05°07'54"E and 59°12'51"N, 05°04'48"E.
The mines were laid at a depth of 30 feet and flooders were set to operate on 19 February 1945.

On completion of this unobserved lay ' Force 2 ' retired at high speed to the northward and then set course to return to Scapa Flow where they arrived around 1450A/12.

' Force 1 ' had picked up Utsira Island by radar at 1940A/11 and an hour later course was altered to close the convoy route south of Stavanger. The ships were positioned in line ahead.

At 2215A/11, ' Force 1 ' altered course to starboard to run down the coast, keeping 10 miles to seaward and parallel to the shipping route. At the same time they were picked up and held by enemy shore radar.

At 2312A/11, when opposite Egersund, radar contact was made with a convoy close inshore and apparently making for Egersund. Course was altered towards the target and fire was opened with starshell at 2341A/11. The appearance of a radar echo on the starboard bow, which was classified as a U-boat, somewhat complicated the movements of ' Force 1 '.

During the ensuing engagement the enemy shore batteries joined in, but although they registered several straddles and near misses they achieved no hits. Rear-Admiral McGrigor reported that out of eight ships which made up the convoy, including escorts, one, probably an escort, escaped into Egersund after being hit. Of the remaining seven, one large merchant vessel was sunk and another one was left blazing to the waterline. One small merchant vessel, or escort, was seen to turn turtle. One M-class minesweeper blew up after running itself ashore in flames. The other three ships were left on fire of which one was seen to blow up when ' Force 1 ' was retiring.

' Force 1 ' withdrew to the west at 0027A/12, altering to the northward when well clear of enemy radar. They made rendezvous with ' Force 3 ' at 0800A/12. At 0910A/12, a shadowing JU 88 was shot down by fighters from HMS Trumpeter. One of the fighters was damaged and had to ditch the pilot being recovered by HMS Zodiac. The Combat Air Patrol was kept busy during the forenoon investigating bogeys, but no enemy attack developed and at 1400A/12, ' Force 3 ' was detached for operation Gratis. ' Force 1 ' then headed for Scapa Flow, passing east of the Shetlands, and arrived at 2205A/12.

' Force 3 ', made up of the light cruiser HMS Dido (Capt. R.F. Elkins, OBE, RN), escort carriers Premier (A/Capt. R.J. Gardner, RN), HMS Trumpeter (Cdr. K.S. Colquhoun, RN) and the destroyers HMS Opportune (Cdr. R.E.D. Ryder, VC, RN), HMS Zest (Lt.Cdr. R.B.N. Hicks, DSO, RN), HMS Zodiac (Lt.Cdr. H.R. Rycroft, DSC, RN) and HMS Cavendish (Cdr. R.H. Maurice, DSO, RN), had departed Scapa Flow at 1130A/11, to rendezvous with ' Force 1 ', and, having been detached on the 12th, proceeded west-about round the Shetlands and through Fair Isle Channel for the flying off position in 59°15'N, 01°10'E.

Two MTB's from Lerwick had been detailed to rendezvous with ' Force 3 ', to act as Air Sea Rescue craft in the event of a ditching to the east the flying off position. They made rendezvous at 0915A/13, just short of the flying off position. In view of the good weather conditions, flying off commenced immediately and by 0930A/13, the strike, made up of six Avengers from 846 Squadron and eight Wildcats from HMS Trumpeter and six Avengers from 856 Squadron and eight Wildcats from HMS Premier, was airborne. Departure was taken at 0938A/13 and a good landfall was made on Utsira Island. At about 1130A/13 the 12 Avengers laid their mines in the channel between Salhus light and a position 500 yards to the northward. Only light flack was encountered and all aircraft returned safely to the carriers being landed on by 1150A/13. ' Force 3 ' then returned to Scapa Flow arriving there at 2100A/13.

The German convoy attacked by ' Force 1 ' was made up of the transports Bahia Camarones (8551 GRT, built 1918), Charlotte (4404 GRT, built 1908) and Wesermarsch (1923 GRT, built 1943). They were escorted by the minesweepers M-456, M-436, M-306, M-273 and M-253. The submarine U-427 was also with the convoy and she fired torpedoes at ' Force 1 ' but all mised. The Bahia Camarones, Charlotte and M-273 were sunk.

27 Feb 1945
HMS Seraph (Lt. T. Russell-Walling, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Loch Alsh with HMS Caesar (Capt. G.N. Brewer, DSO, RN) and HMS Carron (Lt.Cdr. J.V. Wilkinson, DSC, RN). (5)

28 Feb 1945
HMS Vengeful (Lt. A.S. Melville-Ross, DSC, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Loch Alsh with ships from the 24th and 18th Escort Groups and HMS Caesar (Capt. G.N. Brewer, DSO, RN) and HMS Carron (Lt.Cdr. J.V. Wilkinson, DSC, RN). (6)

1 Mar 1945
HMS Vengeful (Lt. A.S. Melville-Ross, DSC, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Loch Alsh with ships from the 18th Escort Group and HMS Carron (Lt.Cdr. J.V. Wilkinson, DSC, RN). (7)

29 Mar 1945
HMS Tactician (Lt.Cdr. L.N.A. Jewell, DSC, MBE, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Campbeltown with HMS Carron (Lt.Cdr. J.V. Wilkinson, DSC, RN) and HMS Cambrian (Lt.Cdr. H.T. Harrel, RN). (8)

12 Apr 1945
At 0645 hours, HMS Cambrian (Lt.Cdr. H.T. Harrel, RN), HMS Carron (Lt.Cdr. J.V. Wilkinson, DSC, RN) and HMS Cavendish (Cdr. R.H. Maurice, DSO, RN) took over the escort of HMS Renown (Capt. B.C.B. Brooke, RN) from HMS Havelock (Cdr. R.A. Currie, DSC, RN) and HMS Hesperus (Lt. A.C.D. Leach, RN). (9)

14 Apr 1945
At 0700 hours, HMS Renown (Capt. B.C.B. Brooke, RN), HMS Cambrian (Lt.Cdr. H.T. Harrel, RN), HMS Carron (Lt.Cdr. J.V. Wilkinson, DSC, RN) and HMS Cavendish (Cdr. R.H. Maurice, DSO, RN) arrived at Scapa Flow. (9)

25 Apr 1945
Around 1730B/25, the battleships HMS Anson (Capt. A.C.G. Madden, RN), HMS Duke of York (Capt. A.D. Nicholl, DSO, RN) departed Scapa Flow for Malta. They were to continue their work-up programme in the Mediterranean.

They were escorted by the destroyers HMS Barfleur (Cdr. M.S. Townsend, DSO, DSC and Bar, OBE, RN), HMS Caprice (Lt.Cdr. G.W. McKendrick, RN), HMS Carron (Lt.Cdr. J.V. Wilkinson, DSC, RN), HMS Cavendish (Cdr. R.H. Maurice, DSO, RN), HMS Tuscan (Lt.Cdr. P.B.N. Lewis, DSC, RN) and HMS Tyrian (Cdr. R.H. Mills, RN).

At 0100B/26, the heavy cruiser HMS Sussex (Capt. A.F. de Salis, DSO, RN) joined. She had departed Scapa Flow around 1940B/25 to overtake and join the other ships.

Around 0830A/28, the destroyers HMS Caprice, HMS Carron, HMS Cavendish were detached to Falmouth.

Around 1430A/29, the destroyers HMS Malcolm (Cdr. H. Lloyd-Williams, DSO, RNVR) and HMS Wolverine (A/Lt.Cdr. A.J. McCullogh Miller, DSC, RNVR) joined coming from Gibraltar. HMS Barfleur was then detached to proceed ahead to Gibraltar to fuel.

Around 1400B/30, HMS Tuscan, HMS Tyrian, HMS Malcolm and HMS Wolverine were detached to Gibraltar. HMS Barfleur rejoined at the same time.

Around 1830B/30, HMS Sussex was detached to Gibraltar.

At 0700B/2, HMS Tuscan and HMS Tyrian rejoined but they were detached again around 0905B/2 to proceed ahead to Malta.

Around 1245B/2, HMS Barfleur was detached to proceed ahead to Malta.

Around 1430B/2, HMS Anson and HMS Duke of York arrived at Malta. (10)

Media links


British destroyers & frigates

Norman Friedman


Destroyers of World War Two

Whitley, M. J.

Sources

  1. ADM 173/19364
  2. ADM 53/119641
  3. ADM 173/18745
  4. ADM 53/120967 + ADM 53/121918
  5. ADM 173/19626
  6. ADM 173/20257
  7. ADM 173/20258
  8. ADM 173/19807
  9. ADM 53/122126
  10. ADM 53/120835 + ADM 53/120836 + ADM 53/121275 + ADM 53/122334 + ADM 199/1440

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


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