March Contractors trials April Commissioned for service. 4th Build completion and commenced Acceptance Trials. On completion of trials and storing took .passage to Scapa Flow to work-up with Home Fleet before joining the 17th Destroyer Flotilla. 28th Deployed with destroyer screen for Home Fleet ships providing Distant Cover for Russian Convoy PQ15 and the returning Convoy from Murmansk. (For details of all Russian Convoy operations see CONVOYS TO RUSSIA by R A Ruegg, THE RUSSIAN CONVOYS by B Schoefield and CONVOY ! by P Kemp). May 7th Detached from QP11 after arrival at Reykjavik and deployed with Home Fleet in NW Approaches. 23rd Joined Russian Convoy PQ16 with HM Destroyers ACHATES, ASHANTI, VOLUNTEER and Polish ORP GARLAND as Ocean Escort during passage Murmansk. 26th Convoy under air and submarine attacks. Sustained damage from near misses. 30th Detached from PQ16 on arrival at Kola Inlet June Independent passage to UK for repair. 6th Under repair. On completion rejoined Home Fleet and deployed as part of destroyer screen for the major Fleet units including US battleship WASHINGTON providing 'Distant Cover' for passage of Russian Convoy PQ17. July 4th Remained in area with Fleet units after PQ17 scattered in order to provide cover for passage of the return Convoy QP13. (For details of this disastrous decision see ENGAGE THE ENEMY MORE CLOSELY by C Barnett). 7th Resumed Home Fleet duties in NW Approaches after arrival of QP13 at Reykjavik. 20th Detached with HM Destroyers MARNE, MIDDLETON and BLANKNEY to take aranunition and essential stores to replenish stocks in Escorts from Convoy PQ17 which were needed before return passage. Sailed from Scapa Flow via Seidisfjord, Iceland. Refuelled on passage from Royal Fleet Auxiliary tanker BLACK RANGER. 24th Arrived at Kola Inlet and returned independently. August Deployment in NW Approaches in continuation. 13th Detached with HM Destroyer MARNE to meet US cruiser USS TUSCALOOSA and two US Navy destroyers USS RODMAN and USS EMMONS which were taking RAF personnel and medical stores to Archangel (Operation EASY UNIT) 15th Escorted US Navy ships to Archangel for remaining 800 miles of journey. 17th On arrival ships were not allowed to disembark personnel and stores. Returned to resume Home Fleet duties. September 9th Joined Fighting Escort for Russian Convoy PQ18 as destroyer screen for HM Cruiser SCYLLA with other Home Fleet destroyers. 12th Detached from PQ18 with HM Destroyers MARNE, METEOR and MILNE to refuel at Lowe Sound, Spitzbergen . (Note: HMS SCYLLA also detached with destroyers.) 13th Rejoined PQ18 with same ships. 17th Joined returning Convoy QP14 to provide Fighting Escort for passage to Loch Ewe. 25th Detached from OP14 and resumed Home Fleet deployment in NW Approaches. October Nominated for duty in support of allied landings in North Africa (0peration TORCH). Took passage to Gibraltar to reinforce Force H. November 1st On arrival deployed with HM Battleships DUKE OF YORK, NELSON and RODNEY, HM Battlecruiser RENOWN, H M Aircraft Carriers VICTORIOUS, AVENGER, BITER and DASHER, HM Cruisers SHEFFIELD and ARGONAUT. 6th Part of screen for major units in Eastern Task Force to provide cover against any attack by Vichy French warships and to give naval gunfire support during landings. 7th Present during assault phase of landings at Algiers. (For details of allied landings at Algiers see ENGAGE THE ENEMY MORE CLOSELY by C. Barnett and the Naval Staff History) 8th Deployment with screen for protection of major units in continuation. 10th Deployed as escort for military convoy during Build-up Phase of TORCH. Hit by three torpedoes and sunk by U431, 85 miles north east of Algiers in position 37.53N 03.57E. Only 63 of the ship’s company were rescued. See HITLER’S U-BOAT WAR by C Blair.

johnbr, Oct 24, 2011
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