Norwegian Destroyer Svenner
Posted by: Derek Sullivan
Date: July 22, 2004 08:23AM
I bought a second hand book last week "DAWN of D-Day" by David Howarth and it has 6 pages on the demise of the Svenner, on searching
the forum I see some questions on the encounter so I thought I would give
a shortened version of the encounter according to the author.
The Svenner was a new Norwegian Destroyer and with the Stord led the bombardment fleet for the eastern beaches for the latter part of the crossing she was commanded by 30 year old Lt Cmdr Tore Holthe from Trondheim, a smoke screen had been laid by the allies and it was from this that three German torpedo boats emerged .
The commander of the torpedo boats was a Heinrich Hoffman and he had sailed out of Le Harve at first he thought the smoke screen was a natural bank of fog and had no idea of the force that was facing him (no radar ) and he went in from the east in at 28 knots and the three torpedo boats fired 17 torpedoes, but they all went through the the close packed British fleet bar for one, Holthe saw the torpedo approaching from out of the British fleet, as he was on the West side and it had travelled through the fleet before hitting the Svenner ( this was the only action of any kind that the German navy took on D-Day). Thirty two of Holthes crew were killed and two of the British liason men who had been on board with him, Holthe was rescued, after 30 minutes the stern of the Svenner rolled over and disappeared but the bow stayed up for a long time and thousands of troops on their way to the beach saw it, the three torpedo boats made it back through the smoke screen!
If any more info is needed just ask!
Regards from a warm but cloudy Merseyside U.K.