H . M . S. S U T T O N ( N 7 8 )
“Later HUNT” Class coal burning minesweeper ordered
from MacMillan of Dunbarton in May 1917 and laid down on 6th July 1917. Machinery was supplied by Yarrow of Scotstoun. The ship was launched on 8th May 1918 as the first RN ship to carry this name. Her build was completed on 23rd August 1918. After WW1 this
ship was deployed for mine clearance work but later was placed
in Reserve at Alexandria.. Following a successful WARSHIP WEEK National Savings campaign March 1942 this
ship was “adopted” by the civil civil
community of Welwyn Garden City, Hertfordshire.
B a t t
l e H o n o u r s
DUNKIRK 1940 NORMANDY 1944
C r e s t
Field :Gold with blue border
Badge : A Lion passant, Black
o t t o
Cavendo Tutus : Safe
by being cautious.
D e t a i l s o f W a r
S e r v i c e
1 9 3 9
August Brought forward from Reserve
at Alexandria for service in Eastern Mediterranean as 3rd
Flotilla with sister ships ROSS, PANGBOURNE, LYDD, ALBURY,
(Note : To be deployed for patrol for interception of ships
carrying illegal immigrants to Palestine.
cancelled and commissioned for minesweeping duties
September Deployed with Flotilla for
Contraband Control duties in eastern Mediterranean and Red Sea
to for interception of
November Contraband Control duties in continuation
Nominated for return to UK for minesweeping duties.
(Note : Increase in minelaying with magnetic mines had mad
necessary an increase in
minesweeping capability, especially off the East Coast of
December Passage to UK
Deployed at Harwich for minesweeping off East Coast.
(Note : This ship was the first of the Flotilla to return.)
1 9 4 0
Deployed at Harwich to ensure convoy routes off East Coast were kept
clear of mines.
to (Note : Sister HUNT Class
from Alexandria arrived in UK and these ships formed the 3rd
February and 4th
March Part of 4th Minesweeping Flotilla based at Yarmouth with HM Minesweepers KELLETT,
FITZROY, DUNDALK, ELGIN, DUNOON and SELKIRK.
(Note : In addition to keeping convoy routes clear the
Flotilla were also deployed to ensure a
clear passage for RN minelayers during the lay of the East
Coast Mine Barrier to
provide protection of convoy route from attacks by enemy
April East Coast deployment in
continuation based at Harwich.
(Note : Sister ship HMS DUNOON was sunk after detonating a
mine off Great Yarmouth on
German attacks on Low countries
detached for special duties.
24th Deployed with HM Destroyer
VEGA, HMS FITZROY, HM Corvettes MALLARD
WIDGEON and SHELDRAKE to clear passage for mercantiles FLORENTINO and
TRANSEAS from North Goodwin area to Zeeebrugge
(Note : This operation was to place blockships
across harbour entrance.).
25th After clearance operation completed.
took passage to return to Harwich.
(Note : Blockships and escort came
under air attack and operation abandoned.)
28th Joined HM Minesweepers
GOSSAMER, LEDA, PANGBOURNE, ROSS, LYDD,
KELLETT and ALBURY of 5th Minesweeping Flotilla with HMS FITZROY, HMS
SELKIRK and HMS DUNDALK of 4th Flotilla and took passage to assist in
allied troops from Dunkirk
29th Deployed off beaches to ferry
troops to ships unable to go into shallow water.
Ships boats used to carry 200 troops from beaches to HM Cruiser CALCUTTA.
Under air attacks and continued rescue operations.
30th Embarked 193 troops and took
passage to Dover to replenish with coal and victualling
31st Return passage to Dunkirk to resume evacuation duties.
Embarked 453 troops and took passage to Dover.
Pennant Number for visual signalling purposes changed to J78.
1st On arrival at Dunkirk released from DYNAMO and took passage to Harwich to
minesweeping duties with Flotilla after Leave.
10th Deployed with HM Minesweepers
ALBURY, FITZROY, ELGIN, SELKIRK and
DUNDALK as 4th Minesweeping Flotilla at
Harwich for east coast minesweeping.
July Flotilla deployment
to (Note : Extensive
anti-invasion measures were introduced during this period including
patrols off East Coast ports
to intercept invasion craft.)
for special duty.
Took passage to Sheerness with HMS SELKIRK to join HM Minesweeper
for Escort of RFA
WAR NIZAM during passage to Calais.
(Operation LUCID – Later LUCIFER. The RFA was to be used as Fireship and placed
inside the harbour. RFA WAR NABOB was similarly deployed and
escorted to Boulogne
by HMS ELGIN.)
25th Passage to Calais with additional escort of Light Coastal Forces craft.
26th Operation cancelled due to
adverse weather conditions and returned to Sheerness.
4th Took passage to Calais with RFA WAR NIZAM and additional mercantile MYTILUS
to be used as a Fireship.
5th Operation again cancelled due to
weather and returned to Sheerness.
10th Resumed Flotilla duties at
16th After HMS DUNDALK was damaged by a mine off Bawdsey during
Flotilla mine sweep
took sister ship in tow.
17th Embarked crew of HMS DUNDALK
when ship had to be abandoned.
(Note : HMS DUNDALK sank later.)
November East coast
minesweeping duties based at Harwich with Flotilla in continuation..
to HMS PANGBOURNE and HMS LYDD transferred from 5th Flotilla to 4th
December (Note : These ships replaced HMS DUNDALK and HMS ELGIN which
was lost on
1 9 4 1
coast minesweeping with Flotilla based at Harwich in continuation.
Transferred to Granton, near Edinburgh for minesweeping off Scottish East Coast.
to (Note : 5th Flotilla which
had been deployed for this duty had been disbanded.
June The 4th
Flotilla was the only one of this Class deployed in Home waters.)
Transferred with Flotilla to Aberdeen and continued duties off Scottish coast.
to Flotilla nominated for
clearance of British mines in Northern Barrage between Faroes and
(Note : This was to create a Gap for passage of
in NW Approaches.
to Under air attacks during
passages to and from operational area.
1 9 4 2
completion of clearance in Atlantic resumed duties in southern North Sea.
Took passage from Aberdeen to Yarmouth.
19th Involved in collision with HMS ALBURY which
sustained serious damage.
(Note : After return Flotilla was deployed with HM Coastal Minelayer
PLOVER off the
Dutch coast as escort during minelay (Operation HS – See Naval Staff
coast deployment with Flotilla at Yarmouth in continuation.
27th During minesweeping operation by
Flotilla off coast of Norfolk, ENE of Great Yarmouth
sister ship HMS FITZROY was sunk after detonating a mine.
Transferred with Flotilla to Dartmouth for minesweeping in SW
Deployed with Flotilla for minesweeping to ensure safe passage for
coastal convoys and
to passage of allied warships
for the interception of enemy convoys off French coast.
1 9 4 3
Channel deployment in continuation.
June Transferred with Flotilla to Milford Haven
for clearance of existing minefield off Irish
to coast. This proved a long task due to weather
conditions in the area which restricted
sweeping. Carried out final check of area prior to new minelay by HM
1 9 4 4
Approaches minesweeping duties with Flotilla based at Milford Haven in
Transferred to Portsmouth Command and took passage to Portsmouth.
Deployed with Flotilla for minesweeping operations prior to allied
landings in Normandy
(Note : Ships transferred in Flotilla were ALBURY, ELGIN, KELLETT, LYDD,
PANGBOURNE, ROSS, SALTASH and SELKIRK.)
Deployed with Flotilla for mine clearance in area to be used by
convoys. Detached to take part in preparatory exercises with Assault
(Note : These included minesweeping during darkness.)
Mine clearance in Channel and exercises deployment in continuation.
4th HMS ELGIN seriously damaged by acoustic mine
off Portland and later declared beyond
economic repair after survey at Chatham.
8th Detached from Exercise FABIUS
to recover bodies of personnel drowned after the
sinking of US Landing Ships during Exercise TIGER IN Lyme Bay.
(See LANDINGS IN NORMANDY (HMSO).)
On release resumed minesweeping duties in English Channel
(Note : Allocated for mine sweep in Channel 4 ahead of ships of Assault
Force “O” to
Deployed for support of Operation NEPTUNE.
5th Carried out sweep in Channel 4
ahead of invasion craft.
6th Completed sweep of Channel 4
without any incident.
Commenced sweep of area between Channels 4 and 5 to create new Channel
(Note : Canadian 31st Minesweeping Flotilla, Danlayers
and Motor Launches were
also deployed. For details see above Reference.)
7th Returned to Portsmouth with
Flotilla when Channel 34 work completed
8th Deployed for minesweeping away
(Note : Ships of this Class were not suitable for patrol deployment off
30th After completion of NEPTUNE
support Flotilla and resumed minesweeping in SW
Approaches with Flotilla.
5th Deployed in Lands End area after
report of mine explosion by convoy
(Note : U-Boats concentrating attacks in coastal areas frequently laid
See HITLERS U-BOAT WAR by C Blair.)
August Transferred with
Flotilla to Swansea for minesweeping operations in Bristol Channel and
St Georges Channel.
Atlantic traffic was still being routed through Irish Sea as mercantiles using
English Channel were still vulnerable to air attacks.)
HMS LYDD and HMS ALBURY were under repair at Devonport.)
Approaches deployment based at Swansea in continuation.
to Nominated for
withdrawal from operational use with ships of 3rd Minesweeping Flotilla.
1 9 4 5
January Passage to Milford Haven to Pay-off.
to Reduced to Reserve status at
Milford Haven. Paid-off and destored.
Laid-up at Milford Haven.
F i n a l P h a s e
HMS SUTTON remained in Reserve until 1946 when she was placed on the
Disposal List. The ship was sold to DOHMEN and HABETS of Ghent in July 1947 and
towed to Belgium for Demolition.