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by Lt Cdr Geoffrey B Mason RN (Rtd) (c) 2006


HMS P.39 - U-class Submarine

HM S/M Unruly, sister-boat (Navy Photos, click to enlarge) return to Contents List

B a t t l e   H o n o u r s

 None were awarded


Identified only by her Pennant Number the short career of this submarine prevented her being named when this policy was introduced in early 1943.


She was nominated for service with the 10th Submarine Flotilla in Malta which she joined in January 1942 after work-up in Home waters and two patrols based at Gibraltar. During an interception patrol on 16th February that year with HM Submarines P34, P38 and UNA north of Ras al Hamra the Italian convoy from Taranto was delayed and the patrol requirements were changed to a more northerly position. Although the convoy evaded the submarines, P339 made an attack later but this failed. A second patrol from Malta was fruitless and on entry to berth at Manoel Island she was attacked by a single Messerschmitt fighter during which some damage to the casing structure was sustained and required repair.


In a subsequent air raid the submarine was hit by a bomb which damaged the forward torpedo compartment and damaged aft by a near miss. Whilst under repair in the dockyard she was again hit by a bomb which fractured the structure making repair impossible under the current circumstances and she was beached at Kalkara beyond economic repair. The Commanding Officer was Lieutenant N Marriott RN, an ex Merchant Navy officer. Some of the ships company were lost when taking passage to UK in HM Submarine OLYMPUS which sank after hitting a mine off Malta. 


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revised 30/11/10
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