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MTB 77

Posted: Sun Feb 17, 2019 9:11 am
by Warrior-researcher
Dear Fellows

I am currently researching a biography of Lieutenant Richard Guy Ormonde Hudson DSC RNVR, who served in MTBs 62, 65 and 77. He went on to pioneer the Surface Force Direction Officer tactics used to protect the flanks of D-Day, working alongside a number of other distinguished MTB and MGB officers.

In order to illustrate my biography I am trying to locate a picture of MTB 77 whilst she was underway, which I could then obtain permission to use in the biography. Alternately, underway images of MTBs 62 or 65 would be equally useful.

I have searched through the 'usual' sources at the Naval Historical Branch and also contacted BAe (who now own the Vosper archives) but they have nothing that can help me.

If anyone has any underway images of MTB 77, or or MTBs 62 or 65, that they would be willing to share with me (and allow me to publish) I would be very grateful. Of note, any royalties from the biography will go to charity and I gain nothing.

In anticipation, thank you.

Re: MTB 77

Posted: Sun Feb 17, 2019 6:09 pm
by Admin
Hello Warrior-reearcher

Thanks for your enquiry to the forum. Unfortunately I've not been able to turn up any photo on any of the three boats you mention. The only one I know of which you no doubt may have come across is this one on the IWM web site. Len Reynolds' Mediterranean MTBs at War doesn't contain one either, and he had the pick of the IWM collection, and those sent into the former Coastal Forces Veterans Association by its members, when compiling his three volumes on the boats of Coastal Forces, so it may be tough ask, but you never know your luck!

Image THE ROYAL NAVY DURING THE SECOND WORLD WAR. © IWM (A 14545) IWM Non Commercial License

Re: MTB 77

Posted: Fri Feb 22, 2019 4:41 pm
by Warrior-researcher
Dear Sir/Madam (Admin)

Thank you for taking the time to look through these investigative areas for me. I've already spent many hours in the Naval Historical Branch looking through their archives as well as looking through the many books on MTBs, but have not yet been through the collection at IWM ... my next mission? I do have one partial image of MTB 77 from the collection of a family member, but it is not a clear image and thus not really suitable for my biography. I'll thus keep looking as you suggest below.

Thank you again for pursuing this for me ... and I'll update the forum if I do turn something up.

Kindest Regards

Re: MTB 77

Posted: Sun Feb 24, 2019 12:00 pm
by Stephen
Hi Warrior-Researcher,

I scanned the attached from the booklet Vosper MTBs in Action by Squadron/Signal Publications. Not underway unfortunately (seemingly at anchor) but it might do? As you'll see the credit is to the National Maritime Museum, although searching their (not very good) catalogue doesn't reveal any items with this vessel name...

Another possible source might be this model. It seems to me that if Italeri decided to make a model of the boat, they might have some images of it ? Googling suggests that the manual is illustrated, but I can't see enough detail to know if the pictures are of MTB 77 I'm afraid. ... 77--101798


Re: MTB 77

Posted: Sun Feb 24, 2019 8:31 pm
by Warrior-researcher

This is brilliant - thank you. I'll getting touch with the NMM and see if I can get the original. Or, I feel a visit to London may be forthcoming.

Your time and effort in finding this for me is very much appreciated.


Re: MTB 77

Posted: Wed Mar 27, 2019 12:41 pm
by Michael
Hello Warrior-Researcher,
I am a recent member coming across the site through my research on MTB77.My late father served on this boat until it was sunk .I have like yourself only limited photos found during my searches.I have a record that the captain during its history was Lieutenant Sturgeon.
Regards Michael.

Re: MTB 77

Posted: Sun Mar 31, 2019 8:41 am
by Warrior-researcher
Hi Michael

Thanks for posting about your Father. The Commanding Officer you mention was Temp Lt John Brian Sturgeon DSC RNVR (known as Brian). He was CO of MTB 77 when on the night of 15/16 March 1943 it attacked some merchantman of Marittimo near Sicily; after successfully sinking one merchant ship, MTB 77 closed to attack a second merchant ship using depth charges - which required them to cross the ship's bow at about 30-40 yards. S/Lt D W Napier was the First Lt and was Killed in Action as he tried to release the port depth charge.
The person I'm researching then joined as the new 1st Lt, seeing action in May off Tunisia.
MTB 77 was sunk on 8 September 1943 off Vibo Valentia delivering Rear Admiral R R McGrigor to the allied landings, with no loss of life.
Brian Sturgeon was Killed in Action on the night of 2/3 April 1944 when as Senior Officer 24th MTB Flotilla he encountered an I-Boat (a 20-ton landing craft) whilst embarked in MTB 242; he was killed by a single bullet during the engagement.

The picture below is of the Crew of MTB 77 in March 1943 ... is your father among them?

Kind Regards


Re: MTB 77

Posted: Sun May 26, 2019 3:54 pm
by Warrior-researcher
For everyone who helped me with this thread, I'm delighted to report that the book is now complete and will be published on 5 June 2019. It is called 'Crash Start' and has ISBN 978-1789630626.
Thank you all for your assistance, which was greatly valued as I finished my research.