Allied Warships

HMS Bleasdale (L 50)

Escort destroyer of the Hunt (Type III) class

NavyThe Royal Navy
TypeEscort destroyer
ClassHunt (Type III) 
PennantL 50 
Built byVickers Armstrong (Newcastle-on-Tyne, U.K.): Parsons 
Ordered19 Jul 1940 
Laid down31 Oct 1940 
Launched23 Jul 1941 
Commissioned16 Apr 1942 
End service 
History

Scrapped at Blyth on 14 September 1956.

 

Commands listed for HMS Bleasdale (L 50)

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CommanderFromTo
1Lt. Peter Barthrop North Lewis, RNDec 194115 Feb 1943
2Cdr. Hugh May Stollery Mundy, RN15 Feb 1943early 1945
3T/Lt. John Malcolm Liddle, RNVRearly 1945May 1945
4T/A/Lt.Cdr. Thomas Graves Clarke, DSC, RNVRMay 194525 Jan 1946

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Notable events involving Bleasdale include:


4 May 1942
The battleship HMS Rodney (Capt. J.W. Rivett-Carnac, DSC, RN) ran over the degaussing (DG) range at Liverpool following which she departed around 1640B/4 for Scapa Flow. She was escorted by the destroyer HMS Newmarket (Lt.Cdr. C.W. North, RN) and the escort destroyer HMS Bleasdale (Lt. P.B.N. Lewis, RN). (1)

5 May 1942
Around 2215B/5, the battleship HMS Rodney (Capt. J.W. Rivett-Carnac, DSC, RN), destroyer HMS Newmarket (Lt.Cdr. C.W. North, RN) and the escort destroyer HMS Bleasdale (Lt. P.B.N. Lewis, RN) arrived at Scapa Flow. (1)

9 May 1942
HrMs O 14 (Lt.Cdr. H.A.W. Goossens, RNN) conducted A/S exercises at / off Scapa Flow with HMS Derwent (Cdr. R.H. Wright, DSC, RN), HMS Bleasdale (Lt. P.B.N. Lewis, RN), HMS Pathfinder (Cdr. E.A. Gibbs, DSO and Bar, RN) and HMS Quentin (Lt.Cdr. A.H.P. Noble, DSC, RN). (2)

15 May 1942
HrMs O 14 (Lt.Cdr. H.A.W. Goossens, RNN) conducted A/S exercises at / off Scapa Flow with HMS Ashanti (Cdr. R.G. Onslow, RN), HMS Derwent (Cdr. R.H. Wright, DSC, RN), HMS Bleasdale (Lt. P.B.N. Lewis, RN) and HMS Chiddingfold (Lt.Cdr. L.W.L. Argles, RN). (2)

16 May 1942
HrMs O 14 (Lt.Cdr. H.A.W. Goossens, RNN) conducted A/S exercises at / off Scapa Flow with HMS Derwent (Cdr. R.H. Wright, DSC, RN), HMS Penn (Lt.Cdr. J.H. Swain, DSO, RN), HMS Bleasdale (Lt. P.B.N. Lewis, RN) and ORP Slazak (Lt.Cdr. R. Nalecz-Tyminski, ORP). (2)

20 May 1942
HrMs O 14 (Lt.Cdr. H.A.W. Goossens, RNN) conducted A/S exercises at / off Scapa Flow with HMS Derwent (Cdr. R.H. Wright, DSC, RN), HMS Bleasdale (Lt. P.B.N. Lewis, RN), HMS Lord Lloyd (T/Lt. M.W. Bond, RNVR) and HMS Stoke City (Lt. D.P. Piggford, RNR). (2)

22 May 1942
HrMs O 14 (Lt.Cdr. H.A.W. Goossens, RNN) conducted A/S exercises at / off Scapa Flow with HMS Bleasdale (Lt. P.B.N. Lewis, RN) and HMS Quentin (Lt.Cdr. A.H.P. Noble, DSC, RN). (2)

26 May 1942
During 26/27 May 1942 HMS Rodney (Capt. J.W. Rivett-Carnac, DSC, RN) conducted exercises off Scapa Flow. These included night exercises. She was being escorted by the destroyer HMS Pathfinder (Cdr. E.A. Gibbs, DSO and Bar, RN) and the escort destroyers HMS Bleasdale (Lt. P.B.N. Lewis, RN) and HMS Wilton (Lt. A.P. Northey, DSC, RN). (1)

29 May 1942
HrMs O 14 (Lt.Cdr. H.A.W. Goossens, RNN) conducted A/S exercises at / off Scapa Flow with HMS Speedy (Lt. J.G. Brookes, DSC, RN), HMS Halcyon (T/A/Lt.Cdr. H. Harding, RNR), HMS Bleasdale (Lt. P.B.N. Lewis, RN) and HMS Wilton (Lt. A.P. Northey, DSC, RN). (2)

3 Jun 1944
The battleship HMS Rodney (Capt. R.O. Fitzroy, RN) and the light cruiser HMS Sirius (Capt. R.L.M. Edwards, CBE, RN) departed the Clyde for Portsmouth. They were assigned to the Eastern Task Force for the upcoming landings in Normandy as reserve bombandment ships. They were escorted by the destroyer HMS Westcott (Lt.Cdr.(Retd.) H. Lambton, RN) and frigate Riou (Lt. F.L. Boyer, RN).

On the 4th, when in the St.George's Channel these ships were informed that Operation Neptune was postponed 24 hours. Course was then reversed and when off Anglesey they kept steaming up and down. Late in the evening they were ordered to continue their passage southwards.

In the morning of the 6th, HMS Westcott parted company and the escort destroyer HMS Bleasdale (Cdr. H.M.S. Mundy, RN) joined.

The ships arrived in Spithead, near Portsmouth around 1930B/6. (3)

7 Jun 1944
Around 0215B/7, HMS Rodney (Capt. R.O. Fitzroy, RN), HMS Sirius (Capt. R.L.M. Edwards, CBE, RN), HMS Bleasdale (Cdr. H.M.S. Mundy, RN) and Riou (Lt. F.L. Boyer, RN) departed Spithead for the beaches ('Sword' and 'Juno' beaches).

At 1115B/7, HMS Rodney dropped anchor in position 49°22'25"N, 00°17'5"W (off Ouistreham, ' Sword ' beach).

At 1833B/7, HMS Rodney opened fire with her 16" main battery.

At 1856B/7, HMS Rodney opened fire with her starboard 6" battery.

Several more times fire was opened before fire was ceased at 2034B/7. The targets had been elements of the 12th SS Panzer Division 'Hitlerjugend' which were in fights with the Canadians to the north-west of Caen.

At 2135B/7, HMS Rodney weighted anchor and proceeded to the ' Juno ' night anchorage where she dropped anchor at 2300B/7. (3)

9 Jun 1944
At 0310B/9, HMS Rodney (Capt. R.O. Fitzroy, RN), opened fire with her 16" main battery. Fire was ceased 0350B/9. Target had been elements of the 21st SS Panzer Division.

At 0410B/9, fire was opened again with the 16" main battery. At 0450B/9 fire was ceased. Target was again the 21st SS Panzer Division.

At 0505B/9, HMS Rodney weighted anchor and got underway. She dropped anchor closer inshore at 0618B/9.

At 0903B/9, she opened fire with her port 6" battery. [unknown when fire was ceased.] The target had been a German troop concentration.

at 1102B/9, the port 6" battery again opened fire on a German troop concentration. [unknown when fire was ceased.]

At 1441B/9, fire was opened with the 16" main battery on the Houlgate shore battery. Fire was ceased at 1449B/9.

At 1514B/9, the port 6" battery opened fire. Fire was ceased at 1540B/9. The target had again been German troops.

At 1610B/9, HMS Rodney got underway only to drop anchor again 6 minutes later.

At 1635B/9, her port 6" battery again opened fire which was ceased at 1654B/9.

At 1657B/9, HMS Rodney weighted anchor again and got underway. Shorty afterwards she engaged German fighter aircraft with her AA guns.

At 1807B/9, HMS Rodney set course to departed the bombardment area for Milford Haven together with ORP Dragon (Cdr. S.T. Dzienisiewicz). They were escorted by the escort destroyer HMS Bleasdale (Cdr. H.M.S. Mundy, RN) and the frigate Riou (Lt. F.L. Boyer, RN). They arrived at Milford Haven to re-ammunition around 1600B/10. (3)

11 Jun 1944
Around 1200B/11, HMS Rodney (Capt. R.O. Fitzroy, RN) departed Milford Haven for Spithead. She was being escorted by HMS Bleasdale (Cdr. H.M.S. Mundy, RN) and Riou (Lt. F.L. Boyer, RN).

At 2058B/11, HMS Riou obtained an A/S contact and she dropped depth charges at 2100B/11. Another pattern of depth charges was dropped at 2110B/11. During these attacks HMS Riou sustained damage to her engines and she was detached to Plymouth for repairs.

HMS Rodney and HMS Bleasdale arrived at Spithead around 0800B/12. (3)

9 Jul 1944
At 0850B/9, HMS Rodney (Capt. R.O. Fitzroy, RN), opened fire with her 16" main battery. Targets were elements of the 12th SS Panzer Division in or near Caen.

At 1000B/9, HMS Rodney was taken in tow to be towed clear of the beachhead area. Tow was only slipped at 1841B/9. In the meantime at 1430B/9, the destroyer HMS Kelvin (Lt.Cdr. R.M.W. MacFarlan, RN) and escort destroyers HMS Bleasdale (Cdr. H.M.S. Mundy, RN) and ORP Slazak (Lt.Cdr. B. Wronski) had joined to escort HMS Rodney to Spithead.

HMS Rodney and her escorts arrived at Spithead around 2300B/9. (4)

Sources

  1. ADM 53/116592
  2. File 2.12.03.6389 (Dutch Archives, The Hague, Netherlands)
  3. ADM 53/120411
  4. ADM 53/120412

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


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