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by Lt Cdr Geoffrey B Mason RN (Rtd) (c) 2004


HMS SOUTHWOLD (L 10) - Type II, Hunt-class Escort Destroyer including Convoy Escort Movements

HMS Calpe, Type II sister-ship  (Navy Photos, click to enlarge)

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Type II HUNT Class Escort Destroyer ordered on 20th December 1939 from J S White, Cowes IoW under 1939 War Emergency Programme. The ship was laid down on 18th June 1940 as Job No J6274 and was launched on 29th May 1941 as the 1st RN warship to carry this name, that of a fox-hunt in Lincolnshire. Build was completed on 9th October 1941. This destroyer was not adopted by a civil community after a WARSHIP WEEK National Savings campaign in 1941-42.


B a t t l e   H o n o u r s


SIRTE 1942 - MALTA CONVOYS 1942 - LIBYA 1942


H e r a l d i c   D a t a

Badge: On a Field Red, in front of two hunting horns

in saltire Gold, a castle White.



D e t a i l s   o f   W a r    S e r v i c e


(for more ship information, go to Naval History Homepage and type name in Site Search)



1 9 4 1


October                  Contractor's trials and commissioned for service.

                9th          Build completion and commenced Acceptance Trials

                                Passage to Scapa Flow on completion of trials and storing.

                                Worked-up for operational service with Home Fleet ships at Scapa Flow.

                                Nominated for service in Mediterranean.


November              Prepared for foreign service and took passage to Clyde to join escort for military convoy

                                during passage to Alexandria via Indian Ocean.

                16th        Joined military convoy WS12Z as Ocean Escort with HM Destroyer DULVERTON during

                                Atlantic passage to Indian Ocean from Clyde.

                24th        At Freetown with WS12Z

                28th        Sailed from Freetown as Ocean Escort for WS12Z.



                14th        Detached from WS12Z during passage in Indian Ocean from Cape of Good Hope and made

                                independent passage.

                29th        Passage from Mombasa to Alexandria with call at Aden.


1 9 4 2



                5th          Joined 5th Destroyer Flotilla for convoy escort and patrol duties.

                                Deployed supply of stores and embarked troops to Tobruk.



                12th        Part of escort of Malta Relief Convoy MW9B which came under heavy air attack.

                                Convoy returned to Alexandria.


March                    Flotilla duties for Convoy defence in eastern Mediterranean in continuation.

                20th        Carried out anti-submarine sweep along planned path for Malta relief convoy MW10 with HM

                                Escort Destroyers AVON VALE, BEAUFORT. DULVERTON, BRIDGE. HEYTHROP and

                                HURWORTH prior to departure of mercantiles from Alexandria

                                (Operation MG1)

                                (Note: HMS HEYTHROP was torpedoed by U652 NW off Bardia during this sweep.)

                21st         Took passage from Tobruk after refuelling to join escort for MW10 which was under threat of

                                attack from superior Italian force.

                22nd       Detached from Fleet units HUNT Class destroyers for escort of MW10 mercantiles after Italian

                                force approached.

                                Later deployed as screen for HM Cruisers CLEOPATRA and PENELOPE when Fleet

                                destroyers carried out torpedo attacks on enemy force.

                                Rejoined MW10 escort after Italian ships withdrew.

                                (2nd Battle of Sirte For details see Naval Staff History, THE BATTLE FOR THE

                                MEDITERRANEAN by D Macintyre and MALTA CONVOY by R Woodman.).

                                Under air attacks during engagement by Mediterranean Fleet units with Italian warships.

                23rd        Convoy under further air attacks

                                Detached for escort for HM Supply Ship BRECONSHIRE with HMS BEAUFORT

                                (Note: This was intended to allow the supply ship to enter Malta independently after MW10

                                mercantiles had been dispersed and damaged in air attacks.

                24th        Activated British Laid mine whilst attempting to pass a line to HMS BRECONSHIRE in

                                heavy weather conditions.

                                (Note: HMS BRECONSHIRE had been disabled in renewed air attacks off Zonkor Point,


                                Sustained major structural damage with extensive flooding of engine room and failure of

                                electrical supplies.

                                Taken in tow by tug ANCIENT but hull split and ship slowly sank allowing time for survivors

                                to be rescued by HM Escort Destroyer DULVERTON to rescue survivors.

                                See above references for details.

                                (Note: One officer and 5 ratings killed and extensive flooding in Engine Room.

                                Casualty List was published on 28th May 1942.)






by Don Kindell


These convoy lists have not been cross-checked with the text above






Date convoy sailed

Joined convoy as escort

Convoy No.

Left convoy

Date convoy arrived




AT 014/M





TA 010/M





AT 022/M





AT 028/M








(Note on Convoys)


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revised 13/8/11
further editing and formatting is required