Header image 

Eleven months aboard H.M. Submarine STORM

The diary of Able Seaman (Torpedoman) Harold Machin

(Transcription of the hand-written original)

HMS Storm badge



Transcribed diary

This document is formed from entries taken from Harold’s wartime diary kept while je served on H.M.S. STORM. The diary covers the period January to November 1944 and has been transcribed verbatim; however unexplained gaps begin to appear tin the second half of the year. Additional information about specific incidents (and events taking place during gaps in the diary) have been added from HMS STORM’s log books. It is unclear if Harold remained on board until she returned to Portsmouth in April 1945.
Thanks to Amanda Jermain for submitting the copy of the diary . Her father was a friend of Harold.
An 18 page A4 acrobat document


An S-Class Submarine, pennant number P 233, ordered from Cammell Laird Shipbuilders, Birkenhead, on August 4th 1942. Armed with 6 bow & 1 stern 21 in (533 mm) torpedo tubes she carried 13 torpedoes (one reload for each bow tube) or 12 mines; 1 QF 4-inch deck gun; 1 × 20 mm Oerlikon AA gun; 3 × .303 calibre machine guns and a crew complement of 48 she 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 Jube23rd 1942. She was launched on May 18th 1943.

On completion of her builder’s trials P 233 departed for Holy Loch on August 21st 1943, arriving the following day. After completing her full speed trials on the Arran measured mile she commissioned as H.M. Submarine STORM at Holy Loch on August 23rd, Lieutenant E.P. Young, DSC, RNVR in command. While at Holy Loch she joined the 3rd Submarine Flotilla attached to the depot ship HMS FORTH to conduct Torpedo, Gunnery, Bombardment, D/F and RDF exercises and performed simulated day and night attacks, both submerged and surface actions. She would also undergo trials at the torpedo firing range at Arrochar.

STORM sailed for Herwick on November 11th 1943 to begin a short war patrol off the Norwegian coast, the patrol commenced on the 14th and ended on the 27th. She next returned to Holy Loch to prepare for operational service in the Far East. She sailed for Trincomalee, Ceylon via Gibraltar and the Suez Canal on December 27th 1943.

She arrived at Trincomalee on February 22nd and joined the 4th Submarine Flotilla attached to the depot ship ADAMANT. She departed for her 2nd war patrol on the 24th to patrol in the Malacca Straits. She ended this patrol at Trincomalee on March 18th. Early in March the 4th SM Flotilla had been split to form a new 8th SM Flotilla for service with the newly arrived depot ship MAIFSTONE, STORM was now attached to her.

Her third patrol began on April 6th this time to operate off Port Blair in Andaman and Nicobar Islands this ended at Trincomalee on April 19th. She sailed again on May 6th with ordered to patrol off the North coast of Sumatra and to conduct a special operation; she arrived at Trincomalee on May 28th.

Lieutenant E.P. Young, DSC, RNVR received a promotion to Lieutenant Commander RNVR in early June before STORM sailed for her 5th war patrol On June 13th with orders to patrol in the Malacca Strait; the patrol ended at Trincomalee on June 19th. She sailed again on July 15th to patrol off the West coast of Burma; she ended her sixth war patrol at Trincomalee on August 6th. On August 25th she sailed for her seventh patrol with orders to patrol off the Mergui Archipelago and to proceed towards Fremantle, Australia afterwards. STORM arrived at Fremantle on September 22nd to join MAIDSTONE which had sailed for Fremantle on August 25th 1944.

STORM departed Fremantle on October 10th for her eighth war patrol with orders to patrol off the Gulf of Boni, Celebes, Netherlands East Indies; she ended her eighth war patrol at Fremantle on November 13th. She sailed for a nineth war patrol on December 3rd to patrol the Makassar Strait. She arrived back at Fremantle on January 10th 1945. STORM sailed for her tenth, and final, war patrol on January 31st 1945; She was ordered to patrol off the West coast of Sumatra and to proceed to Trincomalee upon completion of the patrol; she ended her tenth war patrol at Trincomalee on February 20th. Shrr sailed four days later to return to the UK for a refit.

HMS STORM reached the UK on April 7th, calling at Falmouth and reached Portsmouth on the 8th. A new commanding officer, Lt. R.A.A.C. Ward, DSC, RN) took over on April 23td in preparation passage for Philadelphia, U.S.A. where she was to refit. She sailed on May 1st arriving there on May 16th. She was still in dockyard hands when the war with Japan ended, her refit completed on September 18th, she arrived ay Holy Loch on October 7th 1945 and was placed in reserve at Harwich on December 3rd 1945. She did not see any farther service and was sold in November 1949 and later scrapped at Troon, Scotland.





Add Comment

* Required information
Enter the third letter of the word castle.
Captcha Image
Powered by Commentics

Comments (1)

Sort By
Topic: Eleven months aboard H.M .S/M STORM
0/5 (0)
merv lark
Aug 2018
First Poster
merv lark (Bristol) says...
My Dad served on that boat. Robert Lark.
Page 1 of 1