'Ruler' Class

This is an unofficial badge - no authorised design was produced before the ship was decommissioned. Shape:
A pentangle,
Blazon (Heraldic description)
The unofficial design comprised of a field of primrose yellow with a Saxon warrior stood in a boat in the lower right of the shield; he is holding a round shield and wearing a helmet while holding a sword at arm’s length towards the left of the shield. A flight of 3 fighter aircraft are flying overhead in the direction of the sword.
THANE: Title of a freeman granted land by the king in return for military service, ranking above an ordinary freeman but below a nobleman in Anglo-Saxon England. The design was proposed by the ships officers and a pentangle plaster wall plaque exists together with a bronze cast of the design transferred into a circular shield was mounted on the ships island superstructure and entry port.

For explanations of heraldic terms see the Badges & Honours page.

 

 

Unofficial Motto:

We live again

 

Pennant Numbers:

 

D83 (Atlantic)

R316 (Pacific)

 


 

Battle Honours:

 

ATLANTIC 1944

 


 

Specifications

Builder: Seattle-Tacoma Shipbuilding Co. Tacoma, Washington

Displacement: 15,390 tons

Length (Overall): 494ft 9in

Beam:  69ft 6in

Flight deck: 450ft x 80ft wood covered mild steel plate

Propulsion: 2 Foster Wheeler boilers; 1 x Allis-Chalmers geared turbine driving 1 shaft

Speed:  16 knots

A/C Capacity: 20

Hangar: 260ft x 62ft x 18ft

A/C lifts: 2, Aft 34ft long x 42ft wide; forward 42ft long x 34ft wide

Arrestor wires: 9 with 3 barriers

Catapult: 1 H4C hydraulic

Armament: 2 single 5in USN Mk 12, 8 twin 40mm Bofors, 22 twin 20 millimetre Oerlikon

Crew Complement: 646


 

Commanding Officers:

 

Capt. P.O. Davis, RNR
Oct 43-Dec 43

 

 

Cdr. E.M. McCausland, RN
Dec 43-May 44

 

 

Capt. E.R.G. Baker, RN
May 44-Feb 45 

 

 

 

Cdr J.C. Allan RNR  as OIC

Feb 45 - May 45

 

Lt. E.G. Evans, RN as OIC
May 45

 


 

Squadrons:

 

831 (personnel)

November 44

 

 

834 (Ferry)

November 44

Swordfish II

 

1851 (Ferry)

Dec- 44 - Jan 45

Corsair IV

 


 

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A History of HMS THANE

June 28th 1944 - HMS Thane has just passed under Lions Gate Bridge returning to Lapointe pier, Vancouver after collecting ammunition from Bremerton Navy Yard, Washington State. Photo: Maureen Ross

HMS Thane was a 'Ruler' class escort carrier (US Bogue class) built in the USA at Seattle-Tacoma Shipbuilding Co. Tacoma, Washington. Her keel was laid down on February 23rd 1943 as a C3-S-A1 type freighter, Maritime Commission hull number 259, Seattle-Tacoma hull number 43. The hull was purchased by the US navy to be completed as the USS Sunset, ACV-48 (designation later changed to CVE-48). She was launched on July 15th 1943, 142 days after her keel was laid, by her sponsor Mrs. C. E. Taylor. Whilst still under construction it had been decided that CVE-48 was to be transferred to the Admiralty on loan upon her completion; after spending a further 127 days outfitting she was ready for delivery on November 18th 1943; CVE-48 took a total of 269 days to complete.

CVE 48 was transferred to Royal Navy custody at Tacoma. Washington on November 19th 1943 and was accepted on behalf of the Admiralty by Captain Penrose O. Davis, RNR. The White Ensign was hoisted and the ship was renamed HMS THANE. Pennant number D-83.

Modification and preparation to enter service:

After completing builders and Admiralty acceptance trials CVE 48 manned by a small steaming party under the command of Captain Davis, preceded to Vancouver, Canada, arriving there on December 5th. CVE 48 was one of 19 escort carriers to be modified to meet Admiralty requirements by the Burrard Dry Dock Co. Ltd., North Vancouver, British Columbia. While in Vancouver she was to receive her full crew compliment and work up ready for beginning her active service.

 

Saturday July 1st. commissioning ceremony and dedication service on the flight deck: Captain Baker reading the Ships’ Commissioning Warrant. [Photo: Maureen Ross]Rear Admiral V. G. Brodeur RCN & Senior Royal Navy Officers inspect the ships company after the Dedication Service aboard HMS Thane, Vancouver, June 44.[Photo: Ray Keena]

Saturday July 1st 1944: Dedication ceremony on the flight deck - the church service was led by The Right Reverend Sir Francis Heathcote, Bishop of New Westminster B.C., followed by Admirals divisions, Rear Admiral V. G. Brodeur RCN, Commanding Officer, Pacific Coast inspecting. Photos: Maureen Ross.

Upon her arrival in Vancouver Thane was moored alongside at Burrard terminal to act as an accommodation ship for the crews of other RN escort carriers which either had modifications in hand or were awaiting modification, including Arbiter, Queen and Speaker. During the first four months at Vancouver her hangar deck was outfitted with rows of two and three-tier bunks to provide one large communal ratings mess deck.

HMS Thane was to have three commanding officers before she entered active service; Commander Eric McCausland, RN (formerly Executive Officer, of the escort carrier HMS Premier which had arrived at Vancouver in mid November) relieved Captain Davis, assuming command on December 11th. He remained with the ship until relived by Captain Edmond Baker, RN on May 7th 1944.

Thane moved to No. 7 berth LaPointe Pier on April 10th in preparation for modification and outfitting as a Strike/CAP (Combat Air Patrol) carrier, work began on April 15th. This phase of the work was completed on June 8th. Part of this work included the addition of 264 tons of pig iron as additional ballast.

One notable event which took place while Thane was in for modification was a wedding ceremony performed in the Captain's cabin to marry one of the ship's officers, Paymaster Lieutenant. Eric H. Grieve-Brown RNR to Flight Officer Muriel Anne Pennoyer RCAF (WD) on March 3rd 1944. The event is notable because it is believed to be the first instance of a marriage being performed on a RN aircraft carrier.

With phase one of her modification program complete Thane's commanding officer and crew came aboard and began commissioning the ship in preparation her for moving to Esquimalt, Victoria, North Vancouver, for remedial work in dry dock. With the majority of her officers and men victualled and accommodated on board Captain Baker announced that HMS Thane was officially commissioned on June 9th.

Thane entered the Esquimalt berthing dock on the 10th and work was completed on the 14th. The ship returned to No. 7 berth LaPointe Pier on the 15th; after final works where completed she was moved to a mooring in the harbour on the 22nd.  Thane's modification programme had taken 55 days to complete.

[Note: the last five CVEs to pass through Burrard's dockyard, PATROLLER, PUNCGER, REAPER, RANEE and THANE had a longer modification timetable than the other 14 vessels modified by Burrard's; this was due to the Admiralty decision that the single Oerlikon mounts on the Gallery Deck and foc'sle deck, were to be changed for fourteen twin mountings. An extra ten days being allocated for this work to be completed.]

On 26th June HMS Thane made her first voyage as a commissioned ship, a short two day round trip to Bremerton Navy Yard, Washington State to load US ammunition; during this period sea trials and departmental work up routines was undertaken. Arriving back at her mooring in the harbour on the 28th, the ship began taking on stores and ammunition.

While at this mooring a former RCAF Blackburn Shark III (RCAF Serial number 548) was delivered to Thane by lighter for use in training the aircraft handling parties, prior to their receiving squadron or ferry aircraft. This was one of five airframes to be handed over to RN escort carriers for this purpose, and they were issued to Patroller, Puncher, Ranee, Reaper and Thane. [These five ships also had a longer modification timetable than the other 14 vessels to pass through Burrard's dockyard; the Admiralty decided that all of the single Oerlikon mounts on the Gallery deck and foc'sle deck, were to be changed to twin mountings, an extra ten days being allocated for this work to be completed.]

A Dedication Service was held on board HMS Thane on Saturday July 1st. The service, which took place on the flight deck was conducted by The Right Reverend Sir Francis Heathcote, Bishop of New Westminster B.C., and Captain Baker read the Ships' Commissioning Warrant. The service was followed by Admirals divisions, Rear Admiral V. G. Brodeur RCN, Commanding Officer, Pacific Coast, and guest of honour, inspecting.

Thane was to make one final short visit alongside at Burrards, mooring at No. 8 berth on Friday July 7th in preparation for a farewell dance which was held on the flight deck late afternoon on Saturday. Admiral Brodeur, the guest of honour, and several hundred guests enjoyed food, refreshments and dancing on the flight deck to the singing of Lester Coles' Debutantes accompanied by the Sandy de Santis band. Thane returned to her mooring in the harbour early on the morning of Sunday the 9th to prepare for her maiden voyage as an operational carrier.

  

Left: July 21st 1944, a US navy Air Ship exercises with HMS thane in the vicinity of San Francisco en route to the Panama Canal. Right: A B-24 Liberator of the Panama Canal defence forces, "attacking" Thane on July 22nd. The ship's Shark has its undercarriage removed to simulate a crash on deck - the ship's mobile crane is ready to move in to 'recover' it.. Photos: Left - Jack Browne, Right -  Maureen Ross.

Active service, first ferry run to Cape Town:

HMS Thane sailed from Vancouver on Sunday July 9th, slipping her mooring at 14:30hrs heading for San Francisco, where she arrived on Wednesday 12th July; poor visibility meant that the ship had to navigate by radar to enter the harbour, where her arrival seemed to be unexpected as no tugs met her or mooring party appeared at the allocated jetty. A party of seamen were put ashore to handle mooring lines. The ship manoeuvred under her own power, since the crew were not yet familiar with her handling characteristics a small collision occurred when a gun sponson clipped a warehouse. At San Francisco, additional communications equipment was fitted to the bridge and combat communications room and further stores were taken aboard. Major Patch RM, Commander Flying, took the opportunity to arrange with the CO of Alameda Naval Air Station to supply some aircraft with towed drogues for gun crew training.

The ship sailed from San Francisco at 08:00hrs on Friday 14th July headed for the Panama Canal, and as arranged two drogue towing aircraft were provided, however poor visibility prevented gun crew training. During the voyage to Balboa exercises and daily drills were performed, including flight deck emergency drills using the Blackburn Shark; radar tests were carried out on Saturday 15th July, but were curtailed when the participating Liberator developed an engine fault. On July 21st A US Navy Blimp (air ship) patrolling the Pacific approaches to the Panama Canal "intercepted" the carrier, and on the 22nd Thane engaged in exercises with aircraft of the US VI Bomber Command, part of the Panama Canal defence forces; B-24 Liberators from the 3rd and 29th Squadrons took off from Howard Field at 11:00, assembled over Rio Hato at 5,000 feet, and were joined by aircraft of the 74th Bombardment Squadron. Radar contact was made with the carrier at 13:30, and the B-24's let down to an altitude of 3,700 feet, "attacking" the carrier at 1348.

The ship docked at Colon on the evening of Sunday 23rd July; the passage from San Francisco took longer than expected as the ship was forced to reduce her speed due to a bearing on the HP turbine gearing running hot. At Colon the US authorities sent a repair party aboard to assist in the repairs. [This was a common fault with the US built CVEs, Lt. (E) C.J. Kenna, senior engineer on Thane, had already encountered a similar but more severe problem on HMS Tracker's maiden Voyage between Seattle and Panama, but in that case emergency repairs had to be carried out at sea whilst the ship drifted aimlessly in the Pacific.]

At Colon Captain Baker agreed to give passage to Norfolk to 3 officers and 200 men of the US Marine Corps; shore leave was given to both watches. Thane entered the Panama Canal at 10:00hrs the following morning and the ship was secured alongside at Cristobel, on the Atlantic coast, at 19:30hrs. Thane left Cristobal for Norfolk, Virginia the next day.

On Wednesday 26th July, Assistant Steward J.W. Newman died of a perforated malignant ulcer; he was buried at sea during the forenoon. On the morning of Friday 28th Acting Leading Seaman T.H. Johns who was working on the side of the ship was lost overboard; although the ship put about and at least one lifebuoy was deployed while he was still visible, but no trace of him was found when the ship reached the lifebuoy.

Thane put into Norfolk Navy Yard, Virginia, on July 30th, and after unloading her passengers underwent a short period of defect rectification. While at Norfolk Thane was allocated to Western Approaches Command for duty as a ferry carrier. On completion of her repairs Thane moved to the Norfolk Naval Operating Base to load 85 Grumman F6F Hellcat aircraft for ferrying to South Africa. On completion of loading Thane sailed for Cape Town on August 14th.  HMS Thane arrived in Cape Town on September 2nd and unloaded her aircraft to RNAS Wingfield. Whilst in Cape Town, the ship's flight deck was re-caulked before she sailed for Norfolk, to collect her next load on September 15th, arriving there on October 3rd.

 

HMS THANE as seem from USN Blimp (airship) K72 as she left Chesapeake Bay heading for New York, October 5th 1944 with a ferry load of Hellcats on board. Photo: Maureen Ross


Second ferry run, Norfolk to Greenock:

Thane sailed from the Clyde to Belfast on November 3rd, loaded with a cargo of Jeeps, Lorries and other military vehicles, which were unloaded on the same day. She then began loading Hellcats and Avengers in preparation for a ferry run, this time to the Middle East.


Third Ferry run, UK to Adabiya, Egypt & back

Thane sailed on November 6th as part of the 20 ship Alexandria bound convoy KMF 36; the convoy arrived in Gibraltar on the 15th, and reached Alexandria on the 19th. Thane continued on to Port Said, arriving there on the 20th. She transited the Suez Canal the next day to the military harbour at Adabiya on the Gulf of Suez, and unloaded her cargo of aircraft onto the quayside. The following day the personnel of 831 NAS and personnel and aircraft of 834 NAS were embarked for passage to the UK where both squadrons were to disband. These units had been disembarked from HMS Battler, in preparation for the ships' new role as a ferry carrier, Battler embarking the ferry load delivered by Thane for onward passage to India.

 

HMS THANE unloading her ferry load at the military harbour at Adabiya on the Gulf of Suez,. Photo: Maureen Ross

 

Thane sailed from Adabiya on the 23rd, arriving back at Gibraltar on the 30th. She departed from Gibraltar on December 1st in company with the destroyer HMS Croome as escort. Thane arrived on the Clyde on December 6th after a very rough passage through the Bay of Biscay.  After unloading her aircraft and disembarking the personnel of 831 & 834 squadrons HMS Thane restored ship and made good the storm damage in preparation for her next voyage.

 

Left: HMS THANE transiting the Suez Canal on her way to the military port of Adabiya in the Gulf of Suez.. Right: HMS THANE passes the KLM airline offices, Port Said on her return voyage to the UK from Adabiya. Photos: Left - Ray Keena , Riught - Maureen Ross.

Fourth ferry run, Greenock to Norfolk, Va and back:

Thane sailed for Norfolk, Va., on December 16th, on a round trip voyage, Greenock to Norfolk for a mixed ferry load of aircraft. On December 28th 1851 squadron embarked at Norfolk Operating Base for passage to the UK; this unit had formed and worked up at USNAS Brunswick. The squadron embarked with 18 Corsair IV aircraft, aircrews and maintenance personnel. The squadron was briefly at USNAS Floyd Bennett Field for a period of deck landing practice on USS Charger in Chesapeake Bay before delivering its aircraft to the quayside for loading.

Also loaded and stowed in the hangar was the Royal Navy's first batch of helicopters - at least 9 Sikorsky R-4B Hoverfly I. The machines had been delivered to RN Ferry Squadron at Floyd Bennett Field, USA during June 1944 and were embarked on Thane at Norfolk & 30th. These machines were flown on board, four landing on Thane's fight deck on December 29th; these were struck below for storage in the hangar before snowfall made further landings impossible. The remaining five machines flew on board at 08:00hrs the next morning. A number of spare airframes, including Corsairs and Wildcats, some of which had been operated by RN training squadrons based at US Naval Air Stations where also loaded as deck cargo; this completing a load of 86 aircraft, 24 in he hangar and 62 as deck cargo. Thane sailed for New York at 10:00hrs on New Year's Eve 1944. After a difficult passage through fog and later gale force winds the ship arrived in New York on New Year's Day 1945 and was berthed at 35th Street, Brooklyn in the mid evening. . Passengers and stores were embarked for the UK and Thane waited to join the next UK bound convoy.

At 11:00hrs on January 3rd Thane departed from New York and joined the 33 vessel New York to Liverpool convoy CU 53 sailing for the UK, this was another stormy passage, so rough in fact that on the 6th aircraft had to be re-lashed on deck as the chains securing them were snapping under the violent pitching of the ship. On the evening of the 8th the convoy hove to because the very severe seas; Thane suffered more storm damage, some of which required the attention of her damage control parties to prevent the ship taking on water. Upon reaching the Western Approaches Thane broke off and proceeded to Belfast, arriving there on the 14th. At 14:00hrs she was alongside Sydenham Air Station jetty where the 18 aircraft, stores and aircrews of 1851 squadron and part of the maintenance personnel disembarked to the RN Aircraft Repair Yard. [Squadron members not required at Sydenham were allowed to remain aboard so that they could get home on leave earlier than if they had to travel by passenger ferry from Belfast]

Thane sailed for the Greenock the following morning where she was to off -load her remaining cargo of aircraft which was intended for delivery to the navy's Receipt & Despatch Unit at RNAS Abbotsinch, and make repairs to storm damage.


Torpedoed:

At 13:28hrs, approaching the Clyde Light Ship, and entering the swept channel, Thane was rocked by an underwater explosion on her starboard aft quarter. The force of the explosion blew the starboard aft 5 inch gun and its sponson clean off the side of the ship, and displaced the aft aircraft lift causing it to become wedged within its well. Eye witnesses reported that the flight deck planking seemed to ripple and take on a corrugated appearance. The explosion created a large hole between the destroyed after starboard gun sponson and the keel.

 

HMS Thane photographed by an aircraft from HMS Puncher while at No. 1 Casualty Buoy on the Clyde, January 17th. Note: this is a rare picture in which she is wearing her pennant number '83'. Photo: Maureen Ross

Also in the vicinity were the trawlers Cypress and Cirisinio and a Norwegian Oiler Spinanger; the fast troopship HMT Ile de France (a 21 knot, three stacker) and her screen, destroyers HM Ships Caprice and Oribi were 4 miles astern. Caprice and Oribi closed on Thane to investigate, at 13:35hrs they signalled Ile de France that Thane had been mined or torpedoed; the troopship increased speed to avoid becoming a target. [It became known later that Thane had been torpedoed by U-1172 {for many years this attack was accredited to U-482. This submarine also attacked and damaged the Norwegian tanker Spinanger at 14:05 about 1 nautical mile off Clyde Light Vessel, and ½ a mile from Thane's position; both vessels were sailing unescorted from Northern Ireland to Greenock.]

 

Thane after being torpedoed (1): the Port After gun sponson has been sheared off by the explosion and an enormous hole extends almost to the keel [Photo: Maureen Ross]

Thane after being torpedoed: the Port After gun sponson has been sheared off by the explosion and an enormous hole can be seen on the water line, Photo: Maureen Ross

Although Thane's main engines were undamaged attempts to get under way failed, underwater damage was such that no connections existed between turbine and propeller. The main steering gear was also out of action, emergency steering by hand was instigated in the tiller flat, it was found that 12 degrees of rudder to port and starboard was possible. Damage control parties completed shoring up the most badly damaged bulkheads by 16:00hrs and a continuous damage watch was instigated to monitor repairs and potential areas of weakness in the hull. Several compartments were successfully pumped out, and the ship maintained a fairly even keel. Casualties were dealt with by the ship's medical staff and by a group of QARNNS nurses (Queen Alexander's Royal Naval Nursing Service) who had come aboard at Belfast for passage to Greenock. The ship suffered approximately 25 casualties and 10 fatalities. The casualties were mainly the men closed up at the starboard aft gun sponson and in No. 11 mess where there were one or two mess sweepers at work and off watch watch-keepers present in the mess went the explosion occurred.
 

Thane after being torpedoed (2): the Port After gun sponson has been sheared off by the explosion and an enormous hole extends almost to the keel [Photo: Maureen Ross]

THANE in dry dock after being torpedoed: the Port After gun sponson has been sheared off by the explosion and an enormous hole extends almost to the keel, Photos: Maureen Ross

Several attempts were made in the afternoon to take Thane in tow but a line was not successfully passed aboard until the Frigate HMS Loring was ordered to take the ship in tow. The tow got underway at 18:50hrs and speed was gradually worked up to approximately 7 knots. Not long after the ship was inside the boom defences (04:30hrs approx) the tugs Paladen & Duchess of Abercorn relieved Loring of the tow; the ship was moored to No. 1 Casualty buoy off Greenock at 07:42hrs.

The next two days were spent making the ship safe and recovering bodies trapped behind watertight hatches. Shore leave was granted to the majority of the crew who had been warned not to mention the incident and to behave as normal [this was a common practice designed to deny the enemy of confirmation of damage]. Divers inspected the underwater damage in order to assess the cause and extent of the damage.

The ship cast off No. 1 Casualty buoy at 09:00hrs on the 18th and was towed by tugs to E.1 Buoy where she was secured at 10:00hrs in preparation for de-storing ship. A floating crane and 4 lighters came alongside at lunchtime to begin off loading the 68 aircraft which were still on board (24 in the hangar and 44 parked on the flight deck); this operation was completed by 15:20hrs. Seven of the nine helicopters were flown off the ship later, after arrival in port. The floating crane had left by 17:00hrs; the remaining ships' company continued disembarking stores.

Thane was next moved to a mooring in the Gareloch where Lt Cdr James Woodrow RNVR and Lt W.D. Hatton RNVR (HMS President), naval mine disposal officers, came aboard with a de-ammunitioning party of ratings from HMS Spartiate and Orlando. The job was to take 10 days to complete in extremely dangerous conditions owing to the condition of the ammunition - shell noses and fuses were badly crushed with detonators completely exposed, and much of it was covered with oil fuel; by this time the ship was almost deserted, most of Thane's crew being on leave (the majority of whom were not to return, receiving new postings whilst on leave).

  

HMS THANE alongside in Faslane.. This photo shows her with her radar and armament removed prior to her disposal.

 

Thane was fully ammunitioned at the time of the attack, all of her Ready Use Magazines and lockers were stowed to 100% capacity. The party removed over 600 5 inch Shells and a similar number of charges from the 5 inch magazine and Powder Room, over 2000 cases of 40mm and 131 Cases 20mm ammunition from other Magazines. Fuses from the bomb and depth charge rooms had been safely removed by the ship's crew earlier. Lt. Cdr Woodrow handled the first batch of damaged ammunition by himself in order to give confidence to his party.

The damaged ammunition and shells were loaded into a Clyde puffer (a small auxiliary vessel) which made a number of trips to drop the unstable cargo in 95 fathoms of water in an area between Ardrossan and Brodick. Lt. Cdr Woodrow was awarded a bar to his George Medal for the de-ammunitioning of Thane, others in the de-ammunitioning party and five of Thane's officers and crew received awards

Investigations into the explosions in both Thane & Spinanger concluded that in both cases the damage was caused by a single German T.5 torpedo, with a non-contact pistol, the head containing a 600 lb. charge of alumanized hexanite. Such a torpedo would have been running at a depth of between 30 and 40 feet.


Disposal:

Upon inspection in dry dock HMS Thane was declared a constructive total loss and was towed to Faslane and de-stored. On February 22nd Cdr James C. Allan RNR became O.I.C. HMS Thane, Captain Baker being reassigned to became CO of HMS Garuda (RN Aircraft Repair Yard, Coimbatore, S. India) Thane was decommissioned to reserve and laid up at Faslane with a small care and maintenance party on board under Lt. Ernest Evans, RN who was appointed when Cdr Allan left at the beginning of May to become CO of HMS Dungeness. Tame was reduced to nominal reserve status on July 21st 1945.

Thane had been earmarked for service with the British Pacific Fleet, for which she was assigned the pennant number R316 which she would have carried for service in the Pacific. Although Thane was completed as a Strike/CAP carrier she never operated any aircraft (other than the Hoverflies), and her arrester wires appear not to have been rigged.

CVE - 48 was returned to United States custody as lying' on December 5th 1945 while still n the United Kingdom at Faslane. She was stricken for disposal by the US Navy in 1946, and was subsequently sold to Metal Industries (Salvage) Ltd. She was broken for scrap at Faslane later that year.

 

A rare coloir shot of HMS Thane alongside at Faslane after being decommissioned. Photo by "Foxx" - inage from the Paul Moore collection

A rare colour shot of HMS THANE alongside at Faslane after being decommissioned. Photo by "Foxx" - inage from the Paul Moore collection.

 


 

 

Content revised: 17 April 2017

 

Sources used in compiling this account:

Click here for a list of Primary sources

 

Additional sources:

Kenna, R. & Dodgson, A. (2005) 'H.M.S. Thane, Getting on with the job' private publication.

Fold3.com various documents including;

Admiralty War Diaries

Norfolk Navy Yard War Diaries

Mew York Navy Yard War Diaries

Miscellaneous documents


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Comments (5)

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Tom Fletcher (Waterloo, Canada) says...
Harry Gichrist (a Canadian) was an engineer on Thane when it was torpedoed. We have a letter and photo of him being awarded a medal by the Governor General of Canada. Tom Fletcher is Harry Gilchrist's great grandson who is fascinated by tales of the survival of the badly damaged Thane.
24th December 2016 4:08pm
Roy Brown (Hove, UK) says...
I think my dad was on Thane when torpedoed. I have his service record and the dates tie up. He was Able Seaman Herbert Charles Brown.
13th November 2016 7:27pm
Mr FJH Glover (Glasgow, UK) says...
My dad was the Master at Arms on HMS Thane in 1945 when the ship was torpedoed on entering Greenock. His Messman, Jock Clark, was killed and I think it was my dad who retrieved his body from the MaA cabin. Jock Clark was buried in Greenock cematarey.
I was in the Royal Navy 1952 to 1982
9th July 2016 6:24pm
Mrs Caroline Simpson (Hamilton, UK) says...
Dear Mr Glover, I have read, with interest of your fathers actions on 15/1/1945 on HMS Thane.
My grandfather was killed on that day, he was Jim Clarke, Able Seaman, who had lived in Glasgow, born in Belfast. I have visited his grave at Greenock cemetery.
Could my grandfather have been your fathers Messman?
i would be most obliged if you could take the time to give me any information possible.

Kind regards,

Caroline Simpson
13th November 2016 1:09pm
Caroline Simpson (Hamilton, UK) says...
Hi Mr Glover, I have just checked the casualty list and my grandfather was person named Clarke who was killed. My grandmother died many years ago but I remember her telling me of one of my grandfathers shipmates coming to see her after his death. She noticed that he was wearing my grandfathers ring- I have heard that it was navy custom to distribute the deceaseds possesions? I am obviously not wishing to "Reclaim" any ring which may or may not exist, I would just love to hear about ... Read More
13th November 2016 1:22pm
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