the second Group
of PORPOISE Class submarines
ordered on 1st July 1936 from HM Dockyard
Chatham and laid down on 9th December
1936. This minelaying submarine was launched
on 27th September 1938 and was the
2nd RN warship to bear
the name which
was introduced in
1897 for a destroyer sold in 1921. Build was
completed on 24th May 1939. This
submarine had been commissioned for service
the China Station. After the outbreak of war the
submarine in September 1939 was at Aden during
passage to join the Flotilla.
t t l e
H o n o u r s
r a l d i
c D a t a
Badge: On a Field Green, a
a circular frame.)
t t o
Grandis inter alios:
'Great amongst others'
u m m a r
y o f W a r
S e r v i
1 9 3 9
Commissioned for service under the command of
Lieut Cdr R P Lonsdale, RN
On completion of acceptance trials prepared for
On passage to join Flotilla at Hong Kong
At Aden and took return passage to UK for
minelaying duties in Home waters.
Deployed at Portsmouth on arrival.
Nominated for service in Atlantic for defence of
HX series convoys during passage from
Canada to UK.
Deployed with HM Submarines CACHALOT and NARWHAL
for convoy defence based
Provided defence with HM Submarine NARWHAL and
four French submarines for
HXF11, HX11 and HX12 during Atlantic passage
1 9 4 0
Atlantic deployed in continuation
Redeployed for interception patrols in Home
Waters based at Immingham
Carried out several patrols.
Deployed with HM Submarines NARWHAL, PORPOISE,
SWORDFISH and TETRARCH for
interception of warships and mercantiles on
passage to Norway
Deployed to carry out minelay in Kattegat.
Entered Kattegat and encounter HMS NARWHAL
returning from minelay.
Under air attack without serious damage.
Sighted enemy trawlers and decided to carry out
lay in in alternative area.
Under anti-submarine search and during evasive
manoeuvres detonated mine and
major damage which resulted in submarine being
stuck in the mud on sea bed.
Obliged to surface when air became foul.
When unable to surface released drop keel and
blew reserve tanks which enabled
Under series of air attacks which totally
Later towed to Frederickshaven, Denmark and crew
were taken PoW
o s t W a r
N o t e s
SEAL was not in repairable
condition, despite efforts being made at Kiel to
bring her back into service. In 1943 this
submarine was left to rust
at Kiel. In April 1946 after a court Martial
Lieut. Cdr. Lonsdale was acquitted
of all charges relating to the loss of his
command. He subsequently resigned
his commission and entered the Church.