Builder: Cammell Laird Shipyard, Birkenhead, United Kingdom
Displacement: 814 tons
Length: 217 ft
Beam: 23 ft 8 in
Draught: 11 ft
Propulsion: 2 × 950 bhp (708 kW) diesel engines, 2 × 650 hp (485 kW) electric motors driving two propellers
Speed: 14.75 knots (16.97 mph; 27.32 km/h) surfaced. 9 knots (10 mph; 17 km/h) submerged
Range: 7,500 Nautical miles surfaced (8,600 mi; 13,900 km) at 10 knots (12 mph; 19 km/h) 120 Nautical miles submerged ( 140 mi; 220 km) at 3 knots (3.5 mph; 5.6 km/h)
Armament: 6 × bow & 1 stern 21 in (533 mm) torpedo tubes – carried 13 torpedoes or 12 mines; 1 × three-inch (76 mm) gun (QF 4-inch deck gun; 1 × 20 mm Oerlikon AA gun; 3 × .303 calibre machine guns
Crew complement: 48
Lt. William Gordon Meeke, DSC, RN 10 Nov 1943 30 Oct 1945
Image copyright IWM (FL 3103)
HM Submarine P242 was ordered from Chatham Dockyard, Chatham, Kent on August 13rd 1941, one of the batch three boats ordered as part the third group of S class submarines for the Royal Navy. Her keel was laid down on April 17th 1942. She was launched on April 22nd 1943.
She departed from her builder’s yard at Chatham for Sheerness on April 7th 1944, arriving there the same day. She began her builder’s trials the next day off Sheerness. On completion she sailed for Portsmouth on the 8yhm escorted by the minesweeper HMS BOSTON, arriving on the 10th. She next conducted three days of trials in the Solent before sailing for Plymouth in company with the Free French submarine FFS RUBIS on the 14th and arriving there on the same day. The two submarines sailed for St. Mary's, Scilly Islands early on the 16th, they anchored off the town later that day. They made rendezvous with HM Submarine SIBYL and her escort the destroyer HMS SARDONYX on the 17th and course was then set for Holy Loch. On arrival on the 19th to begin her Torpedo, Gunnery, Bombardment, D/F and RDF exercises and simulated day and night attacks, both submerged and surface actions. She also performed Degaussing trials off Helensburgh and trials at the torpedo firing range at Arrochar. Local vessels acted as targets.
After completing her speed trials on the Arran measured mile P242 commissioned as H.M. Submarine SHALIMAR at Holy Loch on April 22nd 1944 under the command of Lieutenant W.G. Meeke, DSC, MBE, RN.
H.M. Submarine SHALIMAR departed Holy Loch for Gibraltar on August 11th 1944 with convoy OS-86 / KMS 60 on the first leg of the trip to the Far East.
H.M. Submarine SHALIMAR departed Trincomalee for the UL on September 4th, arriving at Portsmouth on October 23rd 1945. She was placed in reserve at Harwich on October 30th 1945. It is unclear if she returned to active service but she was scrapped at Troon, Scotland in July 1950.
Last modified: 17 June 2020
uboat.net entry for H.M. Submarine SHALIMAR
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HM Ships COLOSSUS, GLORY, VENERABLE and VENGEANCE. GLORY did not arrive in Sydney until August 16th.
At the end of June 1945, the Admiralty implemented a new system of classification for carrier air wings, adopting the American practice one carrier would embark a single Carrier Air Group (CAG) which would encompass all the ships squadrons.
Sturtivant, R & Balance, T. (1994) 'Squadrons of the Fleet Air Arm’ list 899 squadron as conducting DLT on the Escort Carrier ARBITER on August 15th. It is possible that the usual three-day evolution was cancelled due to the announcement of the Japanese surrender on this date and was postponed for a month.
Gordon served with the radio section of Mobile Repair UNit No.1 (MR 1) at Nowra, he was a member of the local RN dance band, and possibly the last member of MONAB I to leave Nowra after it paid off. .
In March 1946 I joined 812 squadron, aboard HMS Vengeance, spending some time ditching American aircraft north of Australia. Eventually we sailed for Ceylon ( Sri Lanka ) landing at Trincomalee and setting up a radio section at Katakarunda. In the belief that we were exhausted we were sent to a rest camp at Kandy for a few weeks. We moved down to Colombo to pick up Vengeance and returned to Portsmouth via the Suez Canal . I was discharged in November 1946.