HMS United

Vessel Name on Arrival: 
HMS United
Vessel Type: 
Submarine
Official Number: 
113848
GRT: 
540
Draught For'd: 
13' 03"
Draught Aft: 
14' 09"
Year Built: 
1942
Arrival Date: 
08/02/1946
Breakup Started: 
08/02/1946
Date First Beaching: 
19/03/1946
Breakup Completed: 
04/03/1947
Original Builder: 
Vickers-Armstrong & Company Limited, Barrow-in-Furness
Original Yard No.: 
799
Name Changes: 

1941  :  Launched as P-44

1943  :  Renamed HMS United

Other Information: 

HMS United          Pennant No. P-44          U-Class Submarine for the Royal Navy

Keel Laid Down           :  25-02-1941          Launched :  18-12-1941      Completed :  02-04-1942

Tonnage Surfaced       540 tons standard load  /  630 tons fully loaded

Tonnage Submerged   730 tons

Length:   58.22m (191 ft.)         Breadth:   4.90m  (16’ 1”)          Draught:  4.62m  (15’ 2”)

Propulsion :  Twin-Screw / Twin Diesels & Motors  (Paxman-Ricardo)

Power :  615 HP  /  825 HP

Speed :  11.25 knots surfaced  /  10.00 knots submerged

Torpedoes :  4 x Bow Torpedo Tubes  (carrying 8 – 10 torpedoes on board)

Deck Gun :   3 inch

 

HMS United spent most of her war in the Mediterranean and the following log shows her activities during that time :

18 Aug 1942
HMS United (Lt. T.E. Barlow, RN) torpedoes and sinks the Italian transport ship Rosolino Pilo (8326 GRT) 50 nautical miles bearing 190 of Pantellaria. The Italian ship was already damaged in a previous attack by motor torpedo boats.

17 Sep 1942
HMS United (Lt. T.E. Barlow, RN) sinks the small Italian merchant Rostro (333 GRT) and the Italian auxiliary submarine chaser V 39/Giovanna (158 GRT) with gunfire near Misurata, Libya.

1 Oct 1942
HMS United (Lt. T.E. Barlow, RN) torpedoes and (furher) damages the Italian merchant Ravenna (1148 GRT) near Locri, Calabria, Italy. The Ravenna was already grounded after air attack and a fire on 29 September 1942.

19 Oct 1942
HMS United (Lt. T.E. Barlow, RN) torpedoes and damages the Italian tanker Petrarca (3329 GRT) about 20 nautical miles west of Lampedusa Island.

8 Nov 1942
HMS United (Lt. T.E. Barlow, RN) attacks the damaged Italian light cruiser Attilio Regolo with torpedoes of Capo San Vito, Sicily, Italy in position 38º15'N, 12º47'E. The torpedoes missed their target.

(The Attilio Regolo had lost her bow due to an attack the previous day by HMS Unruffled)

17 Jan 1943
HMS United (Lt. J.C.Y. Roxburgh, DSC, RN) torpedoes and sinks the Italian destroyer Bombardiere (1654 tons) about 20 nautical miles north-west of Isola Marettimo, Sicily, Italy in position 38º15'N 11º43'E.

14 Jun 1943
HMS United (Lt. J.C.Y. Roxburgh, DSC, RN) torpedoes and sinks the French merchant vessel Ste Marguerite (5155 GRT, built 1902, former Norwegian vessel Ringulv, one nautical mile south of Capo del Armi in position 37º54'N, 15º42'E.

At 1145 hours (time zone -2) a merchant of about 5000 tons was sighted escorted by a torpedo boat and with two aircraft overhead. An attack was commenced.

At 1236 hours 4 torpedoes were fired from 900 yards. 2 hits were obtained and the merchant sank within 5 minutes. After firing the torpedoes Lt. Roxburgh took United down to 120 feet.

From 1242 hours to 1318 hours United was counter-attacked by the escorting torpedo boat. In all 20 depth charges were dropped. Close enough to break some 20 lights aboard United.

At 1416 Lt. Roxburgh came up to periscope depth. Nothing was in sight except for an aircraft that was circling at the place of the attack. United retreated to the south-west.

20 Jun 1943
HMS United (Lt. J.C.Y. Roxburgh, DSC, RN) torpedoes and sinks the Italian merchant Olbia (3514 GRT, built 1929) about 20 nautical miles south of Cape Spartivento, Italy in position 37º35'N, 16º05'E.

At 1442 hours HMS United spots an unescorted merchant ship. An attack was commenced. At 1513 hours four torpedoes were fired from 900 yards. Three hits were claimed by the British submarine

15 Jul 1943
The Italian (transport) submarine Remo, 1,332 tons, was torpedoed and sunk in the Gulf of Taranto in position 39º19'N, 17º30'E by the British submarine HMS United (Lt. J.C.Y. Roxburgh, DSC, RN).

At 1809 hours (time zone -2) a very small object was sighted about 4 nautical miles away. At 1814 hours the object was identified as a submarine. Lt. Roxburgh manouvered United into attack position. At 1825 the submarine was identified as being Italian.

At 1831 hours four torpedoes were fired from 500 yards. Two hits were obtained. Shortly after the second torpedo hit the stern of the submarine rose out of the water at a 60 degree angle and she sank in four seconds. At 1836 hours four survivors were seen swimming in the water. At 1849 hours United surfaced and picked them up. The survivors turned out to be the Commanding Officer, a midshipsman (who was the ships Navigating Officer) and two seamen.

HMS Unitedsurvived the war at sea and after her return to the United Kingdom paid off and was subsequently earmarked for disposal, arriving at the WSSCL in Troon for breaking in February 1946.

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