MGB 658

Motor Gunboats (MGB) & Steam Gunboats (SGB)
Gail
Seaman
Posts: 10
Joined: Thu Feb 04, 2016 12:31 am

Re: MGB 658

Postby Gail » Sun Feb 28, 2016 11:19 am

Thank you to CHine for posting the photos from my father's album (Stanley).

Just as I was showing dad the website - I was also able to show him your photos too, Jonco. Amazingly - dad then related that he would have been on MTB 634 shown in your photo at that time, as he was requested by Tim Bligh - along with 'Johnny Peglar' - telegraphist, to join him on MTB 634. (Dad was radar operator).

He went on to say that Johnny Peglar was awarded the DSM for action to do with a 'fire-extinguisher especially for electrics' - but dad was unable to continue.

Best regards,
Gail

Admin
Site Admin
Posts: 318
Joined: Thu Jul 02, 2009 7:40 pm

Re: MGB 658

Postby Admin » Sun Feb 28, 2016 2:15 pm

Sorry I've just realised a slight error in the information I gave above regarding the boat commanders. The list should read:

MTB 634 (Lt. W.E.A. Blount DSC, with S.O. Lt.Cdr. T. Bligh DSO, DSC embarked)
MTB 651 (Lt. L. Ennis, RNVR)
MTB 670 (Lt. E. Hewitt, DSC)

Gail
Seaman
Posts: 10
Joined: Thu Feb 04, 2016 12:31 am

Re: MGB 658

Postby Gail » Sun Feb 28, 2016 3:37 pm

Thanks Admin- that fits with what my dad Stanley was saying! 'Bligh was on 662 along with Blount as his first leuitenant, then transferred onto 634 where Blount was in command.'

Regards
Gail

chine
Able Seaman
Posts: 22
Joined: Thu Jan 21, 2016 11:11 pm

Re: MGB 658

Postby chine » Mon Feb 29, 2016 12:56 am

Thanks Gail for the extra pieces of info...

I haven't done much research into war medals (yet!), but these are the medals my Grandfather received. Are these typical of a RN service?
KOH - WW2 Medals.jpg

Admin
Site Admin
Posts: 318
Joined: Thu Jul 02, 2009 7:40 pm

Re: MGB 658

Postby Admin » Mon Feb 29, 2016 1:56 am

Hello chine

Yes those look fairly standard. I make them out to be:

Africa Star (for service off North Africa)
Atlantic Star (Home Waters service)
1939-45 Star (General Service)
Italy Star (Sicily, Bari, Ancona etc)
War Medal (General Service)

I think the only other general service/campaign medals Coastal Forces personnel would have picked up would be the Burma Star, for service in the Far East, and the France & Germany Star, which was for fighting in Europe from D-Day onwards while based on the continent. So for example, that wouldn't have included men based at Felixstowe or Great Yarmouth fighting off the French or Dutch coasts throughout the War, but would have included those same units fighting off the Dutch Coast while based at Ostend in early 1945.

This is a good general guide to Second World War campaign colours.

chine
Able Seaman
Posts: 22
Joined: Thu Jan 21, 2016 11:11 pm

Re: MGB 658

Postby chine » Mon Feb 29, 2016 5:16 am

Thanks for the info Admin... That's all great stuff.

Oh, and Gail - looking forward to more photos/info/stories!

bansheebuzz
Seaman
Posts: 1
Joined: Mon Apr 25, 2016 9:32 am

Re: MGB 658

Postby bansheebuzz » Mon Apr 25, 2016 9:45 am

Hi my name is Mark Burrows from Australia. My grandfather served on 658 and i just discovered this thread!. His name was Albert (bert) Owen Burrows. He was a mechanic in charge of the engine room as i remember. Unfortunatly he passed away in 2001 at the age of 77. I can tell you he was awarded 6 medal during this period inc

Distinguished serve medal
Africa star
Italy star
Atlantic star
39-45 star
War medal

He did tell me stories when i was younger that he lined the hull with wet matresses so that when they were in battle the shells coming through the hull would cool as they passed through the matress to prevent possibly igniting fuel vapors in the engine room. He also told me that when going into battle he would lay between the engine blocks because that was the safest place in the engine room when shells where coming through the hull.

He also told me of one night when he was on deck and enemy fire came throufh the night and killed his crew mate right infront of me.

Thanks for the info on here!

Gail
Seaman
Posts: 10
Joined: Thu Feb 04, 2016 12:31 am

Re: MGB 658

Postby Gail » Tue Apr 26, 2016 10:03 pm

Hello Bansheebuzz - Mark,

Thank you for posting your information and recollections of your grandfather on 658. This topic becomes ever more amazing with the coincidences it generates.

I asked my father this evening if he knew someone called Bert on 658. 'Ooh Bert! Now don't tell me his surname...' Dad pondered for a few moments......'Burrows! Bert Burrows!' Dad remebers your grandfather well. He was the ' leading mechanic' under Petty Officer Bill Last. The fascinating coincidence is that all the photos in my father's album - some of those that have been posted on this site- were taken by your grandfather, Bert! No-one else had a camera- Bert was the photographer and developed the photos himself on board 658! Dad said to make sure I tell you that your grandfather was a very gifted man.

Best wishes,
Gail (and Stanley)

chine
Able Seaman
Posts: 22
Joined: Thu Jan 21, 2016 11:11 pm

Re: MGB 658

Postby chine » Mon May 02, 2016 2:35 am

Hi Mark Burrows

How interesting! Love hearing stories like that... Do you have anything from your late father of interest? Diaries or maybe some photos he took (or of him etc?)

That would be great!
Chris

chine
Able Seaman
Posts: 22
Joined: Thu Jan 21, 2016 11:11 pm

Re: MGB 658

Postby chine » Fri Jun 03, 2016 12:17 am

Hi all again,

As a late addition / question - not sure how I missed this. The original MGB 658 picture that I posted has this written on the back. The writing at the bottom left, does anyone know what it means exactly?

Thanks!

'Passed for ....... through the ....

l c Reynolds....' ?
MGB 658 photo Reverse.jpg

Peter
Able Seaman Radar
Posts: 79
Joined: Mon Oct 20, 2008 7:41 pm

Re: MGB 658

Postby Peter » Fri Jun 03, 2016 12:53 pm

Can only suggest that the photo was passed by the censor as all mail was subject to censorship by the C/O in this
case Rover Reynolds , Usually we did not seal our mail which was passed on to the C/O for censorship
Peter A/B Radar

chine
Able Seaman
Posts: 22
Joined: Thu Jan 21, 2016 11:11 pm

Re: MGB 658

Postby chine » Tue Jun 07, 2016 12:23 am

Hi Peter
That makes total sense... passed for transmission through the post! The ol' war time censorships and sensitivities...

He must have sent it to his girl friend at the time (Later his wife).

That must have been a bit of work checking everyones mail like that, amongst other things...

chine
Able Seaman
Posts: 22
Joined: Thu Jan 21, 2016 11:11 pm

Re: MGB 658

Postby chine » Tue Jun 14, 2016 3:11 am

Mark Burrows - if you ever pop back (maybe next ANZAC day?), I recommend reading 'Gunboat 658'. Your grandfather is mentioned a few times!

Woodstock
Seaman
Posts: 1
Joined: Wed Feb 15, 2017 4:07 pm

Re: MGB 658

Postby Woodstock » Wed Feb 15, 2017 4:22 pm

Hi my name is carl woodiwiss. My grandfather served on MGB 658, his name was John McGuffie. He was an Able seaman and his record showed he served on the boat late 1944 onwards. Unfortunatly he passed away in 1989 at the age of 64. I have tried to find out more but to no avail I have only had family members to ask!. He was a member of your veterans association. I found a couple of your news letters two days ago which has led me to this thread. I know he did attend the reunion on board hms Belfast in 1986 as we have some pictures and a tee-shirt with the boat number on. But not long after fell ill and couldn't attend anymore. If anybody remembered him or could help me in anyway with information I would be truly greatful.

Many thanks

Peter
Able Seaman Radar
Posts: 79
Joined: Mon Oct 20, 2008 7:41 pm

Re: MGB 658

Postby Peter » Thu Feb 16, 2017 8:16 pm

Welcome Carl to our CFV website
Having served in the Adriatic in the same area as your Grandad ( Italy and Yugoslavia ) in 1944/45 on MGB's it would be of interest for you if you could somehow obtain a copy of the book " Dog Boats at War " by Rover Reynolds . I attach details of the reunion on HMS Belfast from our CFVA Newsletter No 47 (1986 ) that you mentioned
in your message
Cheers
Peter
Attachments
2 MGB658 Reunion.jpg
1 MGB 658 Reunion.jpg

Gail
Seaman
Posts: 10
Joined: Thu Feb 04, 2016 12:31 am

Re: MGB 658

Postby Gail » Wed Feb 22, 2017 10:02 am

Hello Carl,
In case my email to you hasn't been received as there were a few photos that the file sizes may have been too large, I'm responding here too.......

It was a lovely surprise to receive your email – and you are lucky that my father lives with me so I have been able to ask if he remembers your grandfather! He does!

‘John McGuffie – I knew him well. He was from Liverpool and was a gunner or gun-layer on the Port side of the Bridge. Gun-layers start the process off – you need cordite and a projectile. He was an assistant on the Port – that’s the left side of the boat – Oerlikon. There were 5 gun positions. They (MGB’s) were Packard engines 1.5, rarely went in for service although they should have. ‘

Dad hasn’t wanted to talk much of his war years in the past, understandably, but he talks more freely these days. It was only recently I learned of why he was ‘Mentioned in Despatches.’ There is a book ‘MGB 658’ written by Reynolds which you may find interesting. Dad (Stanley Campion) was the youngest on board.

If you would like to email me again, I can try to send the photos again. There is a group photo of the crew of MGB 658. Dad's eyesight is very poor so he wasn't able to identify your grandfather, but you may have photos that you could compare with.

It was my dad's (Stanley) 91st birthday yesterday - quite an emotional time as mum passed away last October and they were almost 70 years married - but we still enjoyed plenty of cake!

With best wishes - to all on here too.
Gail

Admin
Site Admin
Posts: 318
Joined: Thu Jul 02, 2009 7:40 pm

Re: MGB 658

Postby Admin » Mon Mar 06, 2017 2:51 pm

Hi my name is carl woodiwiss. My grandfather served on MGB 658, his name was John McGuffie. He was an Able seaman and his record showed he served on the boat late 1944 onwards...I have tried to find out more but to no avail ...f anybody remembered him or could help me in anyway with information I would be truly greatful.
Hello Carl

Gail has already supplied you with some good details of your grandfather's service, but I have finally tracked down his CFVA membership details, which gave him as AB/AA3, 1943–45, Mediterranean & Adriatic, on MGB 658 and MTB 633.

Regards
Admin

chine
Able Seaman
Posts: 22
Joined: Thu Jan 21, 2016 11:11 pm

Re: MGB 658

Postby chine » Thu Nov 23, 2017 5:45 am

Hi all,

I was sent this photo. Anyone else seen it? or have a better copy? It would be good to get all the crew names in there.
MGB 658 Crew photo.jpeg
My grandfather Kenneth Oliver Hine is in the middle row, dead centre. March 1945 Malta.

Gail
Seaman
Posts: 10
Joined: Thu Feb 04, 2016 12:31 am

Re: MGB 658

Postby Gail » Thu Nov 23, 2017 1:00 pm

Hello Chine,

It's a great photo you have of the crew of MGB 658. I haven't seen this one before - and of course, sadly dad is no longer with us ( passed 29th May this year and I miss him so much), so I cannot help you much with identifying other crew. I think my father is top row, second from the left - Stanley Campion. I recognise the two central figures bottom row - the captain / commanding officer I think is Tim Bligh and to his left I think is Len Reynolds but perhaps Admin or others on this forum will be able to help.

With best wishes,
Gail

Peter
Able Seaman Radar
Posts: 79
Joined: Mon Oct 20, 2008 7:41 pm

Re: MGB 658

Postby Peter » Thu Nov 23, 2017 8:02 pm

Dear Gail
Greetings to your Grandfather, from another Grandad who served aboard MGB 647 during the Italian campaign and then Yugoslavia now Croatia . It is very exciting to read of the exploits of MGB 658 having known and did meet Rover Reynolds within the Coastal Forces Veterans Association . Rover did write a paper back book some years ago entitled MGB 658 , and more recently his book " Dog Boats at War " Sutton Publishing Company contains many of the activities of MGB 658 .
Cheers
Peter

chine
Able Seaman
Posts: 22
Joined: Thu Jan 21, 2016 11:11 pm

Re: MGB 658

Postby chine » Fri Nov 24, 2017 2:53 am

Hello Chine,

It's a great photo you have of the crew of MGB 658. I haven't seen this one before - and of course, sadly dad is no longer with us ( passed 29th May this year and I miss him so much), so I cannot help you much with identifying other crew. I think my father is top row, second from the left - Stanley Campion. I recognise the two central figures bottom row - the captain / commanding officer I think is Tim Bligh and to his left I think is Len Reynolds but perhaps Admin or others on this forum will be able to help.

With best wishes,
Gail
Hi Gail,

Sorry to hear about Stanley. It's been w while since I browsed these pages...It's tough losing loved one. May he rest in peace. Glad we got a few stories and photos for all to enjoy while we was alive and glad you posted lots of great thing. He will,in part, live on in the forum that's for sure... feel free to share anything else Naval related about Stanley (did we see the full album?) anytime...

Gail
Seaman
Posts: 10
Joined: Thu Feb 04, 2016 12:31 am

Re: MGB 658

Postby Gail » Fri Nov 24, 2017 9:01 am

Thank you Chine for your lovely message of condolence regarding my dad - Stanley Campion. This was the message I posted at the time but I don't think I actually posted it on this forum:

Hello,
It is with great sadness that I report to the forum, the passing of my father, Stanley Campion (RDF operator on MGB658) yesterday evening - 29th May 2017 aged 91 years. A most upstanding gentle man you could ever wish to meet. In all my years I never knew him to get angry with anyone, never uttered a bad word about anyone, was so patient, kind, trusting and trustworthy. A true, honourable gentleman. My family and I will miss him dearly.

I trust that my father's photograph album emailed to you may be useful for your archives.

Kind regards,
Gail

And this was his obituary which I proudly displayed at his funeral:

L/Sea Stanley Campion MID
by Pioneer - Mon Jun 12, 2017 10.07 am

Very sad to report that Stanley Campion MID crossed the bar on 29 May 2017.
Our thoughts go out to his family and friends at this very sad time.
Stanley served on board MTBs 408, 658, 662.
He later served on Control Target Boat CRT41 and as Coxn on Torpedo Recovery Boat TRB1.
His award of MID can be read on the Awards database
'Able Seaman Stanley CAMPION Service No: P/JX 654587 MGB 662 Mention in Despatches For gallantry, skill and determination whilst serving in Light Coastal Forces in daring and successful attacks on enemy armed shipping in the Adriatic during the months of March and April, 1945...'
There is this link to the London Gazette: 21st August 1945. (Go to second page)
RIP Stanley
'Lest we forget'

I emailed my father's album for the archives here but when I get chance I will try to post it into this part of the forum.

Best wishes,
Gail

chine
Able Seaman
Posts: 22
Joined: Thu Jan 21, 2016 11:11 pm

Re: MGB 658

Postby chine » Wed Jan 10, 2018 11:53 pm

Just uploaded proper scan of photo....
MGB 658 - Offical Crew photo Malta 1945.jpg

Gail
Seaman
Posts: 10
Joined: Thu Feb 04, 2016 12:31 am

Re: MGB 658

Postby Gail » Thu Jan 11, 2018 12:35 pm

Thank you for posting this scan - having looked more closely again I don't think it is my father pictured on here (top-2nd left). Reading the obituary again too I would imagine dad was serving on MGB662 when this photo was taken.

Best wishes,
Gail

MaureenSallows
Seaman
Posts: 4
Joined: Sat Nov 03, 2018 1:45 pm

Re: MGB 658

Postby MaureenSallows » Sun Nov 04, 2018 1:51 pm

Hello there,
I have only just discovered this site, which I find very interesting.
My father was William Henry Gunning (wally to his friends) and he served on MGB 658, he was the radar operator referred to in the book, and was a lovely man.
He spoke very little of the war, but occasionally came out with a gem, such as when a German prisoner of war they rescued became their cook on board for a while. Also of the time the King visited Malta, he missed the visit because he had gone to Mass.
I have very few photos of Dad taken during the war so was fascinated to see some of the ones on this site.
Thank you
Maureen

David Carter
Chief Petty Officer
Posts: 68
Joined: Tue Jan 18, 2011 6:06 pm

Re: MGB 658

Postby David Carter » Sun Nov 04, 2018 5:54 pm

Hello Maureen Welcome to this website. If you would like to post the pictures of your father, it might bring back memories of some of the readers. David Carter (Branch Secretary)

MaureenSallows
Seaman
Posts: 4
Joined: Sat Nov 03, 2018 1:45 pm

Re: MGB 658

Postby MaureenSallows » Tue Nov 06, 2018 5:59 pm

Hello David, thank you for reply,
I attach photos of my father "wally" Gunning, it would be wonderful if someone did remember him, thanks
Maureen
Attachments
image.jpeg
image.jpeg

Peter
Able Seaman Radar
Posts: 79
Joined: Mon Oct 20, 2008 7:41 pm

Re: MGB 658

Postby Peter » Wed Nov 07, 2018 8:30 pm

Hello Maureen
Glad that you found us, will find on this site that I have previously
been able respond to information re MGB 658. I knew and have met
Len Reynolds many times during the reign of the Coastal Forces Veterans Assoc.I served aboard MGB 647 as Radar Operator in the same area at the same time as your Father and would have tied up alongside his boat many times. I attach two pages of Len Reynolds book for your interest. Do you live any where near Gosport? where we will be holding the annual Memorial Service at HMS Hornet
So its welcome aboard, pass my bedtime.
Sadly cannot find the files I want, carry on tomorrow
Peter

Peter
Able Seaman Radar
Posts: 79
Joined: Mon Oct 20, 2008 7:41 pm

Re: MGB 658

Postby Peter » Thu Nov 08, 2018 10:40 am

Good Morning Maureen
Hope you rested well , sorry I lost the files hope to include them now
all this tech, difficult to keep up with at 94
Attachments
MTB 658 Page 235.jpg
MTB 658 Page 235.jpg (413.46 KiB) Viewed 1688 times
MTB 658 Page 234.jpg

MaureenSallows
Seaman
Posts: 4
Joined: Sat Nov 03, 2018 1:45 pm

Re: MGB 658

Postby MaureenSallows » Thu Nov 08, 2018 1:36 pm

Hello Peter
Good morning and thank you so much for the information, which I have passed on to my brother and sister.
My father Wally, who was from Cardiff, had a long happy life, married for nearly 70 years, he died in 2004 aged 91. I just wish technology had been available to him then to be in touch with comrades.
When he left Malta, they travelled towards Japan to continue the conflict, however the USA and Hiroshima occurred so the ship continued to Australia, where he picked up awols, with many funny stories of this time.
He kept diaries of his time in the med, but sadly they were water damaged and destroyed, we do still have some documents though, including his lessons on radar which you will know all about.

The family still live in South Wales, so a little far away from Gosport, but I would be interested to know when memorial service is, I guess probably this Sunday.

Best regards
Maureen


Return to “Motor Gunboats”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest

cron