H.M. Submarine Umbra

Small Patrol Submarine


U Class
Second Group

Pennant No.:

Laid Down:
19th July 1940 as P.35.
Renamed Umbra in 1943.
Vickers, Barrow-in-Furness.

2nd September 1941.
Lt. S. L. C. Maydon.

July 1941 - Feb. 1943
Lt. S. L. C. Maydon.
May - Oct. 1943
Lt. P.H. May.
Oct. - Nov. 1943
Lt. R.A.A. Campbell Ward, DSC.
Nov. - Dec. 1943
Lt. A.G. Chandler (Temporary).
Dec. 1943
Lt. R.F. Park.
Dec. 1943 - June 1944
Lt. R.A.A. Campbell Ward, DSC.
June - July 1944
Lt. J.N. Coombs RNVR.
July 1944
Lt. O. Lascelles DSC.
July - Aug. 1944
T/Lt. T.J. Palmer RNVR
Aug. 1944
T/Lt. H.J. Stapleton RNVR
Aug. - Sept. 1944
Lt. W.D.S. Scott.
Sept. - Oct. 1944
Lt. Cdr. B.T. Simons
Oct. - Nov. 1944
Lt. S.S. Brooks DSC.
Nov. - Dec. 1944
Lt.Cdr. B.T. Simons.
Dec. 19 44 - Mar. 1945
Lt. W.D.S. Scott.
Mar. - May 1945
T/Lt. H.C. Parker, DSC. RNVR.
May - June 1945
Lt. J.S. Pearce RNR.
June 1945
Lt. R.C. Bucknall.

4 Officers, 29 Others.

Service Career:
10th Flotilla, Malta.
10th Flotilla, Alexandria.
10th Flotilla, Malta.
Devonport Dockyard.
5th Flotilla, Fort Blockhouse.

Departed Holy Loch late September 1941 for Dundee.
4th November 1941 - Departed Dundee to patrol off Utvaer.
14th November 1941 - Arrived Dundee.

December 1941 - Departed Dundee for Malta via Gibraltar.
5th January 1942 - Arrived Malta.

Early January 1942 - Departed Malta to patrol and to reconnoitre Sousse.
17th January 1942 - Torpedoed and sank the Italian salvage vessel Rampino north-north-east of Sousse, Tunisia.  Picked up one Italian survivor.

February 1942 - Departed Malta to patrol the east Tunisian coast.
3rd February 1942 - Torpedoed and damaged the Italian merchant Napoli east of Sousse, Tunisia.

March 1942 - Patrolled south of Messina.
8th March 1942 - Whilst diving during an air attack on Malta she hit an obstruction which holed her pressure hull and flooded the torpedo tube compartment.

April 1942 - Patrolled off Lampedusa.
4th April 1942 - Off Lampedusa attacked a merchant vessel escorted by four E-boats and aircraft. She was put deep by the escorts but managed to come to periscope depth and fire a single torpedo from right astern, which missed.
6th April 1942 - Missed an escorted supply ship at 3200 yards with two torpedoes.
7th April 1942 - Sighted targets but was too far off to attack.
8th April 1942 - Again sighted targets but was too far off to attack.
18th April 1942 - Attacked the Italian merchant Nino Bixio south-west of Pantelleria Island. All torpedoes fired missed their target.
19th April 1942 - Torpedoed and sank the Italian merchant Assunta De Gregori off Sfax, Tunisia.

10th May 1942 - Departed Malta for Alexandria.
19th May 1942 - Arrived Alexandria.
Suffering from engine defects no patrols were carried out in May.

6th June 1942 - Departed Alexandria to form a patrol line in company with Una, P31 and P34.
14th June 1942 - Fired four torpedoes at the Italian battleship Littorio. The torpedoes however miss their target.  Later the same day torpedoed and sank the Italian heavy cruiser Trento in position. Trento was already damaged by a torpedo from a British Beaufort aircraft.

July to August 1942 - In Haifa.
August arrived Malta from Haifa.
27th August 1942 - Torpedoed and sank the Italian transport ship Manfredo Campiero west of Cape Spada, Crete.  Later that day sighted another convoy but it made a navigational alteration of course and she had to fire at 3900 yards. One torpedo tube was defective and the three torpedoes fired missed the target.
29th August 1942 - Relieved in this patrol area by Utmost.

23rd September 1942 - Departed Malta to patrol west coast of Greece.
27th September 1942 - Attacked a heavily escorted convoy firing a full salvo of four torpedoes at the very long range of 9000 yards on a rather late track. Hit and damaged Francesco Bartaro. At sunset she was able to surface and follow up getting into a position for another very long-range attack in which she fired two torpedoes. She was further counter attacked but her target was hit and after floating for some hours, finally sank. Having expended all of her torpedoes she returned to Malta.

10th October 1942 - Fired three torpedoes at a large Italian destroyer. Unfortunately she underestimated her speed and missed astern.

23rd October 1942 - Located a large merchant ship unloading at Khoms. She had been damaged by the Fleet Air Arm, and was beached and being attended by a salvage vessel. Fired a single torpedo at the salvage tug Pronto hitting and sinking her. Fired two torpedoes at the beached ship and both hit. The target was Amsterdam and she settled on the bottom in shallow water. Attempts to salvage her continued for several months but failed.

17th November 1942 - Sighted an Italian troop ship and fired two torpedoes, which were all that she had left, and hit with one of them. This was the Piedmonte but she saved herself by beaching and was afterwards refloated.

3rd December 1942 - Sighted a northbound ship north of Mahedia on the east coast of Tunisia. Attacked with gunfire at close range and stopped her. Her destruction was completed, as soon as it had been made certain that there were no prisoners of war on board, by gunfire. This was the Sacro Cuore.  Returned to Malta to land Luftwaffe prisoners who had been found on board.

13th December 1942 - Fired two torpedoes at a small ship north of Sousse escorted by aircraft but missed. She had another chance an hour later and this time hit Macedonia with a single torpedo. With a deck cargo of motor transport she sank in shallow water. An hour or so later tried to finish her off while she had a torpedo boat alongside. The single torpedo, however ran wide of the mark.

6th January 1943 - Departed Malta to patrol in the Kerkenah-Hammamet area.
9th January 1943 - Sighted a small northbound ship escorted by four F-boats.  Fired a single torpedo and missed due to a drill failure.  Later a second torpedo was fired from nearly right astern and also missed. The target was a slow one and she was able to pursue submerged until it was dark when she surfaced and overtook the enemy reaching a surface firing position. Another single torpedo was fired which hit and sank Emilio Morandi.
10th January 1943 - Fired a single torpedo at a small tanker and missed. She then surfaced and engaged with her gun but before she could obtain a hit the enemy escaped into Monastir.
11th January 1943 - Fired a single torpedo at a small escorted northbound merchant ship and again missed. On the same day two caiques from Hammamet were engaged with the gun and set on fire and driven ashore.
12th January 1943 - Fired a single torpedo at a Siebel ferry. Although the torpedo was only set to four feet this torpedo ran under.
15th January 1943 - Met an unescorted ship in the north of Hamlet Gulf. Opened fire with her gun but the enemy replied with accurate fire and she had to break off the action and dive. This eventful patrol was her fourteenth and last before returning to the United Kingdom for refit.

January/February 1943 - On passage from Malta to UK for refit.

Sold and scrapped 9th July 1946.