DIDO-Class cruiser ordered from Harland
& Wolff of Belfast on 4th September 1939
under War Estimates and laid on 2nd November
1939. She was launched on 27th August 1942
as the 5th RN warship to carry this name
dating from 1650 and previously used for a
cruiser sunk at Jutland in 1916. Build was
completed on 20th November 1943. The ship
was not adopted by a civil community after a
WARSHIP WEEK National Savings campaign in
1941-42 as she was not in service.
9 4 3
Contractor's trials and commissioned for
service with 10th Cruiser Squadron.
Build completion date and commenced
On completion of trials and storing took
passage to Scapa Flow
to join Squadron
Worked-up with ships of Home Fleet.
Transferred to SW Approaches based at Plymouth
for interception of enemy convoys
Channel and Bay
of Biscay (Operation TUNNEL Series)
For details of TUNNEL operations see
HOLD THE NARROW SEA
by P Smith
9 4 4
deployment in continuation.
Redeployed at Scapa
with Home Fleet.
Joined Russian Convoy JW57 as Flagship
of escort with HM Escort Aircraft
HM Destroyers METEOR, MILNE, MAHRATTA,
MATCHLESS, OBEDIENT, OFFA,
ONSLAUGHT, ORIBI, SAVAGE, SERAPIS,
SWIFT, VERULAM and VIGILANT for passage
to Kola Inlet
For details of all Russian Convoy
operations see CONVOYS TO RUSSIA by R A
THE RUSSIAN CONVOYS by B Schoefield,
CONVOY ! by
P Kemp and ARCTIC CONVOYS
HMS MAHRATTA was sunk with only too
Detached on arrival at Kola Inlet.
Flagship of escort with same destroyer
screen during return passage of Convoy
Detached from RA57 with Home Fleet
destroyers before arrival of convoy in
Resumed interception duties at Plymouth.
Carried out unsuccessful shipping sweep
with HM Destroyer ASHANTI, HM Canadian
ATHABASKAN, HAIDA and HURON of 10th
series - For details see HOLD THE
Bombarded shore batteries near Ile de
Channel deployment in continuation.
In action with destroyers of 10th
Flotilla against German Torpedo Boats
which were laying
mines NW of
German T.29 sunk.
Nominated for support of allied landings
Allocated to Bombarding Force A
of Western Task Force supporting Assault
For details of naval activities prior to
and during allied landings see OPERATION
K Edwards and LANDINGS IN NORMANDY,
June 1944 (HMSO))
Carried out bombardment exercises with
ships of Bombardment Forces off NW
and took part
in other training with Home Fleet ships.
Assembled in Clyde
Cruisers USS QUINCY
HM Cruisers HAWKINS and ENTERPRISE.
Passage to Channel as part of Convoy
U1A screened by four destroyers.
Operation delayed 24 hours.
Passage through swept channel with
Bombarding Force A.
EREBUS joined Force from Weymouth.
On arrival took up bombardment position.
Provided naval gunfire support for
assault landings on UTAH Beachhead with
ships of Force A
Netherlands Monitor SOEMBA.
Bombarded shore batteries near St. Vaast-la-Hogue.
On release from Western Task Force took
passage to Tyne
Nominated for service in Mediterranean for support of allied landings in south of France.
Passage to Gibraltar
to join 15th Cruiser Squadron.
Allocated to Gunfire Support Group
Passage from Gibraltar
to join Task Force 84 under US Navy
Provided naval gunfire support with HM
Battleship RAMILLIES, HM Cruisers ORION,
cruiser USS QUINCY and Free French
defence batteries prior to landings of
US 3rd Division.
During assault provided gunfire support
on demand. 80 rounds were fired in all.
batteries with French cruiser EMILE
cruisers USS AUGUSTA
Hotel near Hyres.
For further details see LANDINGS IN
SOUTH FRANCE (HMSO) and ENGAGE THE ENEMY
MORE CLOSELY by Corelli
After release from DRAGOON returned to
British control by CinC
Nominated for duty
with British Aegean Force.
Deployed with HM Cruisers ORION, AJAX,
in British Aegean Force to support
allied forces re-occupying Aegean
Took passage from Naples
with HM Escort Aircraft Carrier
Carried out preliminary investigation
of area with HMS STALKER and two
Deployed for interception of enemy
convoys evacuating troops to Greek
Supported allied landing operations.
with Fleet destroyers covered by naval
aircraft from carriers.
Passage to Alexandria
with HI Escort Aircraft Carrier
For details see Official History WAR IN
In action against evacuation craft
with HM Destroyer TERPSICHORE.
Covered reoccupation of Piraeus
with HM Cruisers AURORA, AJAX,
and ORION, HM Escort
Aircraft Carriers STALKER, ATTACKER and
(Note: Troops, vehicles and stores had
been embarked in Alexandria
Transferred to Eastern Fleet and took
passage to Trincomalee.
For details of operations in Indian
Ocean see OPERATION PACIFIC by Edwyn
Covered air attacks by HM Aircraft
Carriers INDOMITABLE and ILLUSTRIOUS on
Deli with HM
Cruisers NEWCASTLE and ARGONAUT
screened by five Fleet Destroyers.
(Note: Diverted from original target Pangkalan
because of weather).
Transferred to British Pacific Fleet
(Note: To be deployed with 4th Cruiser
Squadron -see below)
Eastern Fleet deployment in
Covered air attacks on oil refineries,
railway and harbour installations at Belewan
INDOMITABLE and HMS ILLUSTRIOUS with HM
screened by Fleet destroyers (Operation
9 4 5
Covered air operations by HM Fleet
Aircraft Carriers INDOMITABLE,
against oil refineries at Pangkalan
Brendan, Sumatra with HM Cruisers
ARGONAUT screened by Fleet destroyers
as Task Force 67.
Took passage from Trincomalee to
Pacific theatre with BPF as part of
Task Force 63.
Covered air strikes by HMS INDOMITABLE,
HMS INDEFATIGABLE, HMS
ILLUSTRIOUS and HMS
oil refinery, Sumatra, with ships of
TF63 (Operation MERIDIAN
Repeated operation against oil
refineries at Soengi-Gerong
and came under KAMIKAZE
attacks. The aircraft were destroyed by
naval aircraft before reaching the
Passage to Sydney.
On arrival prepared for joint RN/US
operations with 5th US Fleet under US
Arrived at Ulithi
for deployment with Task Force 57.
Sailed from Ulithi
with Task Force 57 for operational
(Note: Task Force 57 comprised: -
HM Battleships KING GEORGE V (Flagship)
HM Aircraft Carriers INDOMITABLE,
HM Cruisers SWIFTSURE, GAMBIA
(RNZN), BLACK PRINCE and ARGONAUT
(4th Cruiser Sqdn.).
HM Cruiser EURYALUS
and destroyers of 24th, 25th and 27th
Covered air operations by British
aircraft carriers against airfields in Sakishima
to with HM
Cruisers SWIFTSURE, ARGONAUT and
For details of ICEBERG operations see
TASK FORCE 57 by P Smith, OPERATION
PACIFIC by E Gray, THE FORGOTTEN FLEET by
J Winton and WAR WITH JAPAN
Resumed cover during air operations after
BPF deployment in continuation.
Under KAMIKAZE attacks during these
operations during which
HM Destroyer ULSTER
Resumed covering duties during flying
operations after refuelling.
During refuelling diverted with Task
Force 57 ships for attacks on Formosa.
Operations delayed by weather.
Covered air attacks on Formosan
airfields and under air attack.
air operations with TF57 against Sakishima
Returned to Leyte
with TF57 for maintenance and repair of
Sailed from Leyte
to covered air operations by British
(Note: HM Aircraft Carrier FORMIDABLE
had replaced HMS ILLUSTRIOUS).
Detached with HM Battleships KING GEORGE
V and HOWE, HM Cruisers SWIFTSURE,
EURYALUS and ships of 25th Destroyer
Flotilla as screen
bombardment at Miyako
Bombarded AA defences at Nobara
with HMS EURYALUS.
Covered carrier flying operations and
under KAMIKAZE attack.
(Note: HMS FORMIDABLE was hit with heavy
casualties including eight killed).
Assisted AA defence of TF57 during
repeated KAMIKAZE attacks during which
INDOMITABLE was hit).
Under further KAMIKAZE attacks during
which HMS FORMIDABLE was again hit.
Resumed covering duties after refuelling
and positioned to give cover against the
Took over tow of HM Destroyer QUILLIAM
from HM Destroyer NORMAN until arrival
Remained as escort.
Withdrew from operations with ships of
TF 57 for Rest and Recuperation period
During this period ships of the British
Pacific Fleet were transferred to the
3rd US Fleet when US Navy
structure changes were made. They were
re-designated as Task Force 37 which
HM Battleship KING GEORGE V (Flagship).
HM Aircraft Carriers
FORMIDABLE, VICTORIOUS and IMPLACABLE.
HM Cruisers BLACK PRINCE, EURYALUS,
ACHILLES (RNZN), UGANDA
4th Destroyer Flotilla - HM Destroyers
UNDINE, URANIA, URCHIN, UNDAUNTED,
QUICKMATCH (RAN), QUALITY (RAN) and
24th Destroyer Flotilla - HM Destroyers
TENACIOUS, TERMAGANT, TERPSICHORE
(See THE FORGOTTEN FLEET by J Winton,
and OPERATION PACIFIC by Edwyn
and WAR WITH
Sailed for Manus with Task Force 37
Exercised on passage.
Arrived at Manus.
Sailed from Manus to join US 3rd Fleet
for joint operations off Japan.
of Operation OLYMPIC).
Repair work after explosion of defective
shell in forward mounting delayed her
Covered flying operation by British
carriers against targets in the Yokohama
Covered bombardment operations by
British ships on Tokyo area.
Rejoined TF37 carrier group to cover
flying operations in rotation with US
Fuel shortages in British Fleet Train
for replenishment of TF37 became
Deployed with other cruisers of Squadron
as radio communications link between ships of TF37
Rejoined US Task Force ships for
operations off Japan.
by Carrier groups on targets in N
Returned with TF37 to Manus because of
oil fuel shortage in British Fleet train
(Note: HMS KING GEORGE V, HMS
INDEFATIGABLE, HMS GAMBIA, HMS
NEWFOUNDLAND, HMS TROUBRIDGE, HMS
TENACIOUS, HMS TERMAGANT,
HMS TERPSICHORE, HMS TEAZER, HMS
BARFLEUR, HMS NAPIER (RAN),
HMS NIZAM (RAN), HMS WAKEFUL and HMS
WRANGLER were retained
in operational area as part of
Task Force 38 and re-designated Task
See above references).
Redeployed under RN control in Task
Group 111.2 and took passage from Subic
(Note: TG111.2 comprised HM Aircraft
Carriers INDOMITABLE and VENERABLE HM
SWIFTSURE and Fleet