Allied Warships

HNoMS Montbretia (K 208)

Corvette of the Flower class

Photo courtesy of Marinemuseet

NavyThe Royal Norwegian Navy
PennantK 208 
Built byFleming & Ferguson Ltd. (Paisley, Scotland) 
Ordered28 Jun 1940 
Laid down16 Nov 1940 
Launched27 May 1941 
Commissioned29 Sep 1941 
Lost18 Nov 1942 
Loss position53° 37'N, 38° 15'W

At 0851 hours on 18 November 1942, HNoMS Montbretia (Lt.Cdr. Halvor Søiland) was hit in the starboard bow by one of three torpedoes fired from U-262, while she was investigating a radar contact. The corvette had already been missed earlier that night by a torpedo from U-624 at 0603 hours. The torpedo explosion opened a large hole in the bow, the forecastle deck twisted upwards and caused the ammunition of the 4in gun to explode, sending debris of the gun platform over the after deck killing three men. The roof of the Asdic deck came down, the bridge distorted and the bulkheads in the wheelhouse stowed in, killing the helmsman. The commander gave order to abandon ship and three carley floats were launched until a second torpedo struck on the port side in the boiler room, breaking the ship in two and caused the ship to sink rapidly in position 53º37'N, 38º15'W. First it was thought that the corvette was hit by two different U-boats, but U-262 had fired a single torpedo at 0857 hours on a second escort vessel (as Franke wrong assumed), apparently the corvette turned around after the first hit and was hit by the same U-boat. The HNoMS Potentilla picked up 20 survivors from two carley floats and five from a cork net. Some of them were badly injured and two later died and were buried at sea that same afternoon. 40 Norwegians and 8 British of the crew died. 8 of the survivors were wounded.


Hit by U-boat
Sunk on 18 Nov 1942 by U-262 (Franke).

U-boat AttackSee our U-boat attack entry for the HNoMS Montbretia
Former nameHMS Montbretia

Commands listed for HNoMS Montbretia (K 208)

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1Lt.Cdr. Halvor Søiland, RNON???18 Nov 1942

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Notable events involving Montbretia include:

15 Aug 1942
HMS H 43 (Lt. J.C.Y. Roxburgh, DSC, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Lough Foyle with HNoMS Montbretia and HNoMS Potentilla. (1)

19 Sep 1942
HMS H 32 (Lt. J.R. Drummond, RN) conducted A/S exercises off Lough Foyle with HNoMS Montbretia and HNoMS Potentilla. (2)

Media links

U-Boat Attack Logs

Daniel Morgan and Bruce Taylor
(£ 38.25)


  1. ADM 173/17252
  2. ADM 173/17217

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

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