BBC HomeExplore the BBC
This page was last updated in February 2012We've left it here for reference.More information

11 July 2014
Accessibility help
Text only
WW2 - People's War

BBC Homepage
BBC History
WW2 People's War Homepage Archive List Timeline About This Site Print this page 

Contact Us

Like this page?
Send it to a friend!

 

HMS Dainty to HMS Nelson

by culture_durham

Contributed by 
culture_durham
People in story: 
Fred Edwards
Location of story: 
South Atlantic, Malta
Background to story: 
Royal Navy
Article ID: 
A4057896
Contributed on: 
12 May 2005

HMS Dainty 21st. destroyer flotilla Hong Kong 1939

I left England behind at the age of 18 in January 1939 to join HMS Dainty, a destroyer in the China fleet. At the outbreak of war, we were recalled to the UK, but only got as far as Gibraltar and were then sent to the South Atlantic.
We were then sent to Malta and took part in the first fleet action of the war at sea. Involved in convoys and submarine hunting. The Dainty sank 3 submarines in 48 hours and captured a fourth.
We found an abandoned tanker on fire which we boarded, put out the fires and towed into Suda Bay in Crete. We also picked up over 100 survivors of stricken cruiser HMS Calypso.
The Dainty was dive bombed and sunk at Tobruk, 1941 when she was blown in two. I managed to survive unharmed.
I then qualified as a diver and was sent to the Suez canal where I dived on mines for 6 months. I then went home for the first time in 3 years.
My next ship was HMS Nelson, a battleship.
In 1943, the surrender of the Italian fleet was taken on board the Nelson by General Eisenhower and Admiral, Lord Cunningham. Bombarded the beaches on D Day.
On sailing for Portsmouth to restock ammunition, the ship was severely damaged when it struck two mines.

© Copyright of content contributed to this Archive rests with the author. Find out how you can use this.

Archive List

This story has been placed in the following categories.

Royal Navy Category
South Atlantic Category
icon for Story with photoStory with photo

Most of the content on this site is created by our users, who are members of the public. The views expressed are theirs and unless specifically stated are not those of the BBC. The BBC is not responsible for the content of any external sites referenced. In the event that you consider anything on this page to be in breach of the site's House Rules, please click here. For any other comments, please Contact Us.



About the BBC | Help | Terms of Use | Privacy & Cookies Policy