MGB 324

Motor Gunboats (MGB) & Steam Gunboats (SGB)
Pat Bradley
Seaman
Posts: 8
Joined: Fri May 08, 2009 10:16 pm

MGB 324

Postby Pat Bradley » Tue Jul 21, 2009 4:04 pm

I am trying to find out about the wartime history of my late father Charles Bradley who served on MGB 324 in 1944 ( which I believe was part of the 14th MGB Flotilla ) also ML 878 and STAG (Motor Boat 38205) in 1945 and HMS MINSTREL M445 (Minesweeper of the Algerine class) in 1946. He was also at HMS MAYINA in 1946. Any info, photos or advice greatly appreciated.
Thanks
Pat

Admin
Site Admin
Posts: 280
Joined: Thu Jul 02, 2009 7:40 pm

Re: MGB 324

Postby Admin » Tue Jul 21, 2009 9:32 pm

Hi Pat

My father was also at Mayina during August to October 1945 and again between December 1945 and February 1946. Mayina was actually a joint forces transit camp at Colombo, Ceylon (now Sri Lanka). I believe he was there as part of a large build up of Allied Forces for the planned invasion of Japan, prior to its surrender in August 1945. In the event my father did sail and reached Singapore apparently, before being returned to his point of departure in Ceylon and then eventually Drake for demobbing.

cdsc123
Sub Lieutenant
Posts: 76
Joined: Wed Jul 22, 2009 6:38 pm

Re: MGB 324

Postby cdsc123 » Wed Jul 22, 2009 6:40 pm

ML 878
ML 878.jpg
ML 878.jpg (227.8 KiB) Viewed 9961 times

cdsc123
Sub Lieutenant
Posts: 76
Joined: Wed Jul 22, 2009 6:38 pm

Re: MGB 324

Postby cdsc123 » Wed Jul 22, 2009 6:42 pm

MGB 324
MGB324.jpg
MGB324.jpg (154.14 KiB) Viewed 9977 times

Pat Bradley
Seaman
Posts: 8
Joined: Fri May 08, 2009 10:16 pm

Re: MGB 324

Postby Pat Bradley » Thu Jul 23, 2009 10:33 am

Hi Admin
Many thanks for the info my father was at Mayina in Jan and Feb 1946.

I have since found this description on the web:
HMS MAYINA, a huge camp in the jungle, a few miles out of Colombo.
In the camp were thousands of sailors who were to form the biggest fleet ever assembled for an invasion of Japan. Conditions in the camp were pretty grim - water was strictly rationed - and was delivered to the camp each day by tanker lorries.
There were snakes and scorpions, and 'tree-rats' which lived in the trees, together with many strange noises from animals and birds which lived in the jungle. Because of scorpions, it was not a good idea to sit on the toilet, so you stood up on it!
The heat was intense, and around noon each day we were not to be out of doors in the open, as the temperature could rise to 120 degrees in the shade. Many suffered from tropical boils, beriberi, skin rashes and deafness, the latter said to be caused by insect bite.
Unexpectedly, the Atom-Bomb was dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, and that was to signal the end of the war.

I have never found any photos of the place though!
Regards
Pat

Hi Pat

My father was also at Mayina during August to October 1945 and again between December 1945 and February 1946. Mayina was actually a joint forces transit camp at Colombo, Ceylon (now Sri Lanka). I believe he was there as part of a large build up of Allied Forces for the planned invasion of Japan, prior to its surrender in August 1945. In the event my father did sail and reached Singapore apparently, before being returned to his point of departure in Ceylon and then eventually Drake for demobbing.

Pat Bradley
Seaman
Posts: 8
Joined: Fri May 08, 2009 10:16 pm

Re: MGB 324

Postby Pat Bradley » Thu Jul 23, 2009 10:37 am

Hi "cdsc123"
Many thanks for the wonderful photos of MGB 324 and ML 878, I had searched the net but not found these, are they from a publication or available elsewhere?
Great to add to my late father's story, means a lot to me.
Regards
Pat

cdsc123
Sub Lieutenant
Posts: 76
Joined: Wed Jul 22, 2009 6:38 pm

Re: MGB 324

Postby cdsc123 » Thu Jul 23, 2009 3:03 pm

Hi Pat

Apologies for not having accredited the photos, the truth is my collection is gleaned from wherever I can find what I'm looking for and having so very many now I'm at a loss to remember where they all came from. In this instance I am fairly certain the ML is from one of Ben Warlow's Minor RN Vessels In Focus series, and the MGB is from Allied Coastal Forces of World War II: Fairmile Designs and US Submarine Chasers , I'll double check this for you though.

Regards, Christian.

Brian Holmes
Commander
Posts: 245
Joined: Wed May 06, 2009 3:26 pm
Location: Portsmouth

Re: MGB 324

Postby Brian Holmes » Wed Jul 29, 2009 12:01 pm

MGB_324 Woodnut & Co Ltd, St Helens, Isle of Wight 4/9/41

For an attack on an enemy convoy in the Dover Straits 6/8/42
MID TLt Trevor John Mathias RNVR
MID ACMtrMch Guy Steventon C/MX67415
For Operation Neptune - For gallantry and devotion to duty during the landings in Normandy (Gazette Date - 14/11/44)
MID TLt Alexander Richie Birrell RNVR
CdeG TLt Alexander Richie Birrell RNVR
DSM TLSea Ronald Terence Winter D/JX255596

Known Crew
T Lt Alexander Ritchie Birrell RNVR (Commanding Officer)
TLt K A Cradock-Hartop RNVR (Commanding Officer)
TLt Trevor John Mathias RNVR. ML 102 Commanding Officer MGB 324 Commanding Officer MTB 430 and Senior Officer of the 1st MTB Flotilla Two MIDs 1942 and DSC 1944
SLt Richard Lawson Walker RNVR (Died 21/7/42) aged 23 Son of John and Valence M. Walker, of Knightwick, Worcestershire
ACMtrMch Guy Steventon C/MX67415
TLSea Ronald Terence Winter D/JX255596
Ord Roy Barlow D/JX 284871 Killed in a surface action on 4/12/41.
Ord John Hayes D/JX 255976 Died of wounds received in a surface action 8/8/42 aged 29. Son of John and Fanny Hayes, of Nottingham. Buried in Wollaton (St. Leonard) Church Cemetery, Nottinghamshire Grave 329

War Activities
Employed on clandestine operations supporting resistance activities in France.
3-4/12/41 MGB 324 and MGB 328 with boats from 6th MTB Flotilla attack a convoy in the Dover Straits.
14th MGB Flotilla (Part)
MGB 322, MGB 324, MGB 328 and MGB 330
1/42 At Dover
17/1/42 MGB 324, MGB 328 and MGB 330 intercept and attack two armed trawlers.
2/42 MGB 324 and other boats are in action
6/8/42 MGB 6, MGB 10, MGB 324, MGB 330, MGB 331 and MGB 609 depart Dover to intercept 10th R Boat Flotilla laying mines in mid channel. Off Calais MGB 330, MGB 331 and MGB 609 engage the German force with gunfire and are all badly damaged. MGB 330 has all guns out of action but rams R 184 . MGB 330, MGB 331 and MGB 609 are severely damaged and break off the action. In MGB 609, two men have been killed and two men are dying. All three officers and eight ratings have been wounded. Two R Boats are sinking. MGB 6 and MGB 10 make an attack setting an R Boat on fire, boarding it and taking either eight or fifteen prisoners. All boats return to Dover. R184 is finished off by gunfire from a coastal battery.
MGB 609 has only one working engine, no engine controls and no charts.
9/3/43 Operation Miffield.
MGB 324 attempts to recover 2 evaders Sqn Ldr Gordon Carter RAF and Napoleon Barry RCAF from Cloourouan but fails when the surf boat goes to the wrong beach
26/2-11/3/43 Operation Carpenter II.
Attempt to land and bury stores 7 miles southwest of Ile de Batz failed due to fog.
1st Coastal Force Flotilla
MGB 312, MGB 316, MGB 317, MGB 324, MGB 326 and MGB 330
Operation Neptune
Invasion of Normandy
Juno Beach for assault then ETF

Post War Fate
10/45 For disposal
1995 Houseboat at Shoreham, Sussex

cdsc123
Sub Lieutenant
Posts: 76
Joined: Wed Jul 22, 2009 6:38 pm

Re: MGB 324

Postby cdsc123 » Wed Jul 29, 2009 5:48 pm

Photo as houseboat Bellands, she was unfortunately broken up in 2002.
mgb-324-bellands-shoreham-2002.jpg

Pat Bradley
Seaman
Posts: 8
Joined: Fri May 08, 2009 10:16 pm

Re: MGB 324

Postby Pat Bradley » Sat Aug 01, 2009 9:51 am

Brian
Many thanks for the comprehesive history, at the end you say "Juno Beach for assault then ETF" can you tell me what EFT stands for please?
Regards
Pat

Pat Bradley
Seaman
Posts: 8
Joined: Fri May 08, 2009 10:16 pm

Re: MGB 324

Postby Pat Bradley » Sat Aug 01, 2009 9:54 am

Photo as houseboat Bellands, she was unfortunately broken up in 2002;
Hi Christian,
Thanks for the photo and update on her fate
I wonder how much these boats were bought for at the end of the war?
Regards
Pat

Brian Holmes
Commander
Posts: 245
Joined: Wed May 06, 2009 3:26 pm
Location: Portsmouth

Re: MGB 324

Postby Brian Holmes » Mon Aug 03, 2009 8:28 am

The abbreviation "ETF"

It's taken from official documents of the time and stands for "Eastern Task Force". This was the flotillas of coastal forces used to defend the beacheads against attack from the east (E-BVoats, midget submarines etc.) I use it to cover general activity where I have no detailed reports to go on.

Pat Bradley
Seaman
Posts: 8
Joined: Fri May 08, 2009 10:16 pm

Re: MGB 324

Postby Pat Bradley » Mon Aug 03, 2009 9:20 am

Brian
Many thanks
Pat

Admin
Site Admin
Posts: 280
Joined: Thu Jul 02, 2009 7:40 pm

Re: MGB 324

Postby Admin » Mon Aug 03, 2009 2:29 pm

I wonder how much these boats were bought for at the end of the war?
Hello Pat

I came across this insightful piece from a Canadian newspaper, regarding the sell off of Fairmile Bs which casts a bit of light on the haste with which resources were disposed of after the war.
Demands Inquiry In Fairmile Sales

Ottawa, Nov 21 (CP). - An Investigation into the sale of speedy Fairmile coastal patrol craft on the Pacific Coast was asked for today by J.M. Macdonnell (P.C. Muskoka-Ontario) in a letter to Chairman Gordon Isnor of the Commons War Expenditure Committee.

Mr Macdonnell asked Mr. Isnor to put his request before the steering committee of the expenditures group with the suggestion that officials of the War Assessets Corporation—who sold the Fairmiles—be asked to appear before the committee.

The corporation was under heavy fire from the Opposition benches in the House of Commons last night in connection with the sale of 52 Fairmiles in Eastern Canada and 13 in Western Canada.

Reconstruction Minister Howe said 52 Fairmiles declared surplus at Sorel, Que., had been sold for $3000 each. The terms of sale provided if they were resold by the buyer the corporation would receive additional payments of $4,900 to the end of 1946, $3,850 to the end of 1947, $2,800 to the end of 1948, $1,750 to the end of 1949, and $700 to the end of 1950.

(It was understood the original cost of the Fairmiles was in the vicinity of $125,000 each.)
An important factor involved in the cheap disposal of Coastal Forces vessels was their petrol engines, which, if I understand correctly employed high-octane aviation type fuel which would not have been available to fishermen and the like and which made the boats high risk and vulnerable to internal fire and explosion. So Fairmiles when disposed of would probably need their engines stripped out and replaced with diesel engines.

Incidentally $125,000 Canadian dollars would come to $1,563,858 Canadian dollars in today's money! — so that gives some indication of the cost of these boats.

Regards

Admin

Pat Bradley
Seaman
Posts: 8
Joined: Fri May 08, 2009 10:16 pm

Re: MGB 324

Postby Pat Bradley » Wed Aug 05, 2009 10:23 pm

Admin
Fascinating insight into the politics of the day and incredible how much they cost to build.
Many thanks
Pat


Return to “Motor Gunboats”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests

cron