3rd Flotilla ML Malta

Motor Launches (ML), Harbour Defence Motor Launches (HDML) & Rescue Motor Launches (RML)
1958ab
Seaman
Posts: 6
Joined: Fri May 22, 2009 4:49 pm

3rd Flotilla ML Malta

Postby 1958ab » Sat May 23, 2009 7:37 am

Just joined and hope you can help. Any info on my grandfather or his unit.
AB James Henry Brooks served with 3rd Flotilla MLs 1941-1945, possibly with a Canadian skipper.
Convoyed to Gibraltar then onto Malta,where he served for most of the war. He did talk about minesweeping, convoy work,Tripoli, Naples and the North African coast. I have some photos, the crew, convoy work, tanker on fire, and an ML fitted with a Bofors gun on the bow. Many Thanks Alan

Pioneer
Moderator
Posts: 316
Joined: Sun Oct 19, 2008 12:48 pm

Re: 3rd Flotilla ML Malta

Postby Pioneer » Sat May 23, 2009 8:22 am

Hello Alan

Welcome aboard.

Wallis Randall, our Vice Chair, was on ML 567 in the Mediterranean. (it is his boat 'sweeping' in the Bay of Naples shown at the bottom of our Home Page). I shall ask over the weekend whether he remembers your Grand Father and back to you.

I see that Grand Dad was not a member of the CFVA, according to my List. Many who served were not aware of the organisation but hopefully we can now help to spread the word that a few Branches decided to keep going.

Do you have a boat number that your Grandad served on? Your photo's would be very interesting to see. We are continually trying to update the web site, and an article on MLs is being planned for the future.

To pass over any images please scan and use the Contact Us page.

Best Regards
Ted

1958ab
Seaman
Posts: 6
Joined: Fri May 22, 2009 4:49 pm

Re: 3rd Flotilla ML Malta

Postby 1958ab » Sat May 23, 2009 8:34 am

Hello Pioneer, thanks for the quick reply.Unfortunately my grandfather past away 10 years ago, but it was grandmother who found the photos. I hope to have the photos scanned soon,and maybe send them to your site,if you would like. I used to receive the CFVA newsletter. On my grandfathers service record it mentions 'hurts certificates' any idea what these could be? Regards Alan

Pioneer
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Joined: Sun Oct 19, 2008 12:48 pm

Re: 3rd Flotilla ML Malta

Postby Pioneer » Sat May 23, 2009 8:48 am

Hello again Alan
I was editing my previous post when you answered.
My sincere appologies for not having realised that your Grand Father had crossed the bar.
Regarding 'Hurts Certificates' this was a recognition that person(s) when being discharged - had been injured in some way. (either by enemy action or accident) and could possibly assist in their securing civilian employment.
As I said in my edited post :oops: your photo's would be most welcome - thank you for the offer.
My regards to your Grand Mother and all your family
Ted

1958ab
Seaman
Posts: 6
Joined: Fri May 22, 2009 4:49 pm

Postby 1958ab » Sat May 23, 2009 9:15 am

Hello Ted,the injured in action makes sense,as my grandfather did mention he had various bits of shrapnel in him.As for a number, ML 462 was mentioned,and a Canadian Gordon Stead.I have read his book Leaf Upon The Sea.Photos will be sent once I have visited my grandmother.Rgds Alan

1958ab
Seaman
Posts: 6
Joined: Fri May 22, 2009 4:49 pm

Postby 1958ab » Sun May 24, 2009 10:19 am

Have just found a photo of my grandfather plus 25 other AB seamen,posing outside a wooden hut in uniform.There are some
signatures on back:A.Stroud,A,West,H.Goswell,DixieDean,D.Haskins,J.Higgs,C.A.Grant,James White,R.Burnham.The following names are partial ot hard to read.J.B.Covington,C.Le Braton,V.Z.Collins,B.R.Jeagus.J.E Balewin.
The photo is dated 1940,and printed into a postcard marked Gosport.
Would anyone know these other ratings?

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

3rd ML Flotilla

Postby Brian Holmes » Tue Jun 02, 2009 4:11 pm

The mention of ML 462 rings a bell.

ML_462 Dorset Yacht Co, Hamworthy 15/12/41

Birthday Honours 1943
MID AB John Borthwick C/JX199342
For minesweeping in the Gulf of Gaeta in support of Fifth Army (Gazette Date - 2/5/44)
MID TSLt John William Main RNVR
DSM AB Hugh Mayor C/JX299440

Known Crew
TSLt John William Main RNVR
AB John Borthwick C/JX199342
AB Hugh Mayor C/JX299440
Wartime Activities
3rd ML Flotilla
Mediterranean
Based on Malta
Operation Pedestal
Fitted out as an Oropesa minesweeper.
6/42 Operation Harpoon
ML 121, ML 134, ML 135, ML 168, ML 459 and ML 462 sail as part of the close escort of convoy WS19Z from Gibraltar to Malta. Only two of the merchant ships reach their destination.
Minesweeping based on Malta
Minesweeping in the Gulf of Gaeta in support of Fifth Army (Gazette Date - 2/5/44)
8/44 Operation Dragoon - Landings in Southern France

Post War Fate
ML2462
18/3/59 Sold

So we have ML 462 in the 3rd ML Flotilla with some of the places she served. I will collate data for the rest of the flotilla and pass it on

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

Re: 3rd Flotilla ML Malta

Postby cdsc123 » Wed Jul 22, 2009 7:02 pm

ML 462
ml462mpl3219.jpg
ml462mpl3219.jpg (23.37 KiB) Viewed 12099 times

jdcboss
Seaman
Posts: 8
Joined: Tue Mar 17, 2009 4:57 pm

Re: 3rd Flotilla ML Malta

Postby jdcboss » Fri Mar 05, 2010 8:19 am

I have a photo of ML 134 in Malta. Not sure if this is of interest? My Dad, Bert Lapthorne was based there doing CF maintenance. I have photos of him operating cranes and changing ML engines.
ML 134.jpg

Pioneer
Moderator
Posts: 316
Joined: Sun Oct 19, 2008 12:48 pm

Re: 3rd Flotilla ML Malta

Postby Pioneer » Fri Mar 05, 2010 4:03 pm

Hello 'jdcboss'
That is a cracking photo - thank you for posting. I am sure that Dockside shots, and engine changes would be very interesting to see - looking forward to seeing some.
Cheers

jdcboss
Seaman
Posts: 8
Joined: Tue Mar 17, 2009 4:57 pm

Re: 3rd Flotilla ML Malta

Postby jdcboss » Mon Mar 08, 2010 8:14 am

Herewith the picture of ML134 again
ML 134.jpg
ML 134.jpg (172.87 KiB) Viewed 11935 times

jdcboss
Seaman
Posts: 8
Joined: Tue Mar 17, 2009 4:57 pm

Re: 3rd Flotilla ML Malta

Postby jdcboss » Mon Mar 08, 2010 8:23 am

Here are a few other shots of I think Malta.
scan0012.jpg
scan0012.jpg (151.74 KiB) Viewed 11935 times
scan0016.jpg
scan0016.jpg (165.84 KiB) Viewed 11935 times

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

Re: 3rd Flotilla ML Malta

Postby Brian Holmes » Thu Apr 08, 2010 3:32 pm

I am looking at producing data on the various ML Flotillas. As part of this I am correlating individual boat entries in my database.

To try this out I have produced the following for the 3rd ML Flotilla.

There are obviously bits missing that some would remember

3rd ML Flotilla

Boats
1/41 3rd ML Flotilla at Portsmouth
ML 121, ML 123, ML 126, ML 129, ML 130, ML 132, ML 134 and ML 135
ML 123 transferred to 20th ML Flotilla at Portland as Free French “St Ronan”
7/41 3rd ML Flotilla at Gibraltar
ML 121, ML 126, ML 129, ML 130, ML 132, ML 134, ML 135 and ML 168

Operations
12/3/42 At 2130, ML 126 and ML 130 depart Gibraltar passing through the straits and flying the Italian ensign
17/3/42 ML 126 and ML 130, arrive in Malta.
17/3/42 ML 129 and ML 132 depart Gibraltar for Malta.
21/3/42 ML129 is sunk by aircraft bombing off Algeria. Survivors are picked up by ML 132. Seven men are killed or later die of wounds. ML 132 is damaged by bombing, enters Bone in French neutral territory and asks to exercise the right to stay for twenty four hours to make repairs. French authorities refuse and intern both boat and crew.
5 - 6/42 Minesweeping operations in the Mediterranean
7/5/42 S 31, S 34 and S 61 sink the British ML 130 off Malta, by gunfire and scuttling charges, in position 35.55n 14.37e . ML 130 was employed in escorting submarines in and out of harbour. After one such mission ML 130 was approximately one mile off St Elmo breakwater when illuminated by searchlights attempting to find reported E Boats which had followed ML 130 back up the swept channel. There were seven E Boats and three of them were sunk in the ensuing action. ML 130 was overwhelmed with four dead, eight severely injured and one man uninjured. The nine survivors were picked up by German vessels
6/42 Operation Harpoon
ML 121, ML 134, ML 135, ML 168, ML 459 and ML 462 sail as part of the close escort of convoy WS19Z from Gibraltar to Malta. Only two of the merchant ships reach their destination.
5/43 Operation Antidote - minesweeping from Galita Island to Sousse
9/9/43 Operation Avalanche (Salerno Landings)
ML 121, ML 126
Minesweeping in the Gulf of Gaeta in support of Fifth Army
27/11/43 ML 126 is sunk/CTL after torpedo damage by unknown U Boat off Salerno
22/1/44 Operation Shingle Landings at Anzio
ML 121, ML 134
8/44 Operation Dragoon (Landings in Southern France)
ML 462

JWM Fife
Seaman
Posts: 1
Joined: Sun Jun 05, 2016 1:12 pm

Re: 3rd Flotilla ML Malta

Postby JWM Fife » Sun Jun 05, 2016 1:31 pm

My late uncle - TSLt John William Main served on the ML 462......I have on just come accross the Coastal Force Veterans site and Im thrilled to see his name and would love to find out more information.

tomcowell1920
Seaman
Posts: 4
Joined: Wed Oct 19, 2016 2:33 pm

Re: 3rd Flotilla ML Malta

Postby tomcowell1920 » Fri Oct 21, 2016 2:22 pm

Just joined the forum. If your father was part of the 3rd Flotilla perhaps my dad might have know him.
My father Thomas Cowell served on ML129 which was part of the 3rd Flotilla (ML'S 126,127,128,129,130,131,132,133,135,136) when stationed at Gibralter. On 12th March ML 126 & ML130 left Gib for Malta. They managed to get there on 17th. Two more ML'S (129 & 132) made the same attempt on the 17th but failed to reach Malta. ML 129 was bombed and sunk on the 23rd. My father was one of the survivors taken onboard ML132. he was to be interned by the Vichy French in Algeria. Do you have any information that relates to this period.

Thanks
Ian


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