HMS Huntley

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Jordi Comas
Posts: 90
Joined: Sun Jul 28, 2019 5:21 pm

HMS Huntley

Post by Jordi Comas » Fri Dec 06, 2019 1:50 pm

Hi all,

British minesweeper Huntley was sunk by 2 German He-111 around 30 m W of Mersa Matruh 31/1/41. Any more details?
I think she possibly was escorting Egyptian transport Solloum from Mersa Matruh to Tobruk with 250 Italian POW. Is it right? Time of the attack?

Thank you very much
Jordi
Platon Alexiades
Posts: 38
Joined: Mon Jul 08, 2019 2:49 pm

Re: HMS Huntley

Post by Platon Alexiades » Fri Dec 06, 2019 7:04 pm

Hi Jordi,

HMS Huntley was sent (presumably from Alexandria) to relieve the minesweeper HMS Stoke which had lost her minesweeping gear while detonating mines off Tobruk. She was torpedoed, bombed and machine-gunned by aircraft at 1800/31 January 1941 and was sunk about 30 miles west of Mersa Matruh. Eighteen were killed, twenty-six wounded and there were fifty-six survivors.

The Egyptian Sollum had been sent to Tobruk to help evacuating Italian PoWs (about 20,000 had surrendered). She was returning to Alexandria unescorted and carrying 746 PoWs when she was hit by a small bomb and beached at about 1830/31 January 2 miles west Sidi Barrani (although the damage had been slight). Eleven Italian PoWs were killed (not 250 as reported elsewhere). At the time, the bad weather prevented her from being salvaged and she was declared a total loss.

Both vessels had been attacked by Heinkel 111 from different sections of II./KG 26 but as you can see they were travelling in opposite directions and Huntley could not have escorted Sollum.

Best regards,

Platon
Jordi Comas
Posts: 90
Joined: Sun Jul 28, 2019 5:21 pm

Re: HMS Huntley

Post by Jordi Comas » Sat Dec 07, 2019 8:47 am

Thank you Platon as always!

Just, do you know which ship rescued the survivors?

Regards
Platon Alexiades
Posts: 38
Joined: Mon Jul 08, 2019 2:49 pm

Re: HMS Huntley

Post by Platon Alexiades » Sat Dec 07, 2019 2:19 pm

The gunboat HMS Ladybird which was at Sollum at the time was sent to investigate the beaching of Sollum (just a coincidence in names!). I do not know if she was also sent to pick up the survivors of HMS Huntley. It is possible also that the survivors just took to the lifeboats and reached land by their own means. Regret that I do not have more details at this time.

Best regards,

Platon
Jordi Comas
Posts: 90
Joined: Sun Jul 28, 2019 5:21 pm

Re: HMS Huntley

Post by Jordi Comas » Sun Dec 08, 2019 9:47 am

Thank you Platon!
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