Hugh Martyr

ww2dbaseEver since his school days in the United Kingdom, Hugh Martyr had been interested in history, particularly naval history. His interest in history later expanded to cover the American Civil War and the German V-weapons campaign against London. He is also an re-enactor and organizer of major re-enactment events, including the 200th anniversary of Waterloo event where over 8,000 were on the field. He joined the WW2DB team in 2018.

Photographs/Maps Contributions

HMS Rajputaana (F 35) sinking in the North Atlantic Ocean, 13 Apr 1941British motor merchant vessel Beacon Grange sinking after being struck by German submarine U-552, south of Iceland, 27 Apr 1941

Timeline Contributions

Hugh Martyr has also contributed 825 entries in the WW2 Timeline. A small sample of his timeline contributions is shown below.

» 29 Jun 1940: Greek steam merchant Orion landed the four survivors of Dutch motor tanker Moordrecht at Liverpool, England, United Kingdom. Moordrecht had been sunk by German submarine U-48 nine days prior.
» 18 Sep 1940: Italian submarine Bagnolini torpedoed and sank neutral Spanish ship Cabo Tortosa, owned by the Ybarra & Compania of Seville, off Porto, Portugal. The sinking took over 90 minutes and did not cause any loss of life but was still a regrettable incident. The Spanish vessel was suspected of having cargo destined for Great Britain, but it did not, it was simply ferrying from Huelva to Bilbao. Lieutenant Commander Tosoni Pittoni of the Bagnolini had surfaced in order to verify the identity and cargo of the ship but seeing smoke on the horizon and fearing it may have been Royal Navy Forces from Gibraltar made the decision to attack. The crew members were rescued by Spanish ship Monte Ayala.
» 15 Oct 1944: A total of 9 V-1 flying bombs were air launched over the East Anglian coast of Britain. One got through the defensive cordon and came down in the London Borough of Southwark at the junction of Athenlay Road and Fernholm Road killing 8 residents. Read More
» 28 Feb 1942: The 2,605-ton Panamanian cargo steamer Bayou, built in 1919, formerly called Lake Fairfax in 1940, was on route from Rio De Janeiro, Brazil for Canada carrying a cargo of manganese ore when she was torpedoed by German submarine U-129 and sank off Dutch colony of Surinam. There was only one survivor.
» 7 Apr 1940: In the morning, the first German naval forces set sail for Operation Weserbüng. The huge Frorce was split into 10 groups under overall command of Admiral Rolf Carls. In the force were the old battleship Schleswig-Holstein, the heavy cruisers Hipper, Blücher and Lützow, with light cruisers Köln, Königsberg and Karlsruhe. There were also over 20 destroyers, mineseepers and torpedo boats, as well as tenders and transports. Admiral Karl Dönitz made up 9 submarine groups to accompany the surface vessels, 31 submarines in all; the U-boat operations would end as a total failure: despite good conditions the torpedoes showed defects in the depth-keeping mechanisms and the magnetic fuses failed, ending in only 6 Allied sinkings at the cost of 4 submarines. At 1325 hours, Hudson reconnaissance aircraft of No. 220 Squadron RAF spotted a part of German Marine Gruppe 1 and reported the presence of 1 cruiser and 6 destroyers at 1325 hours, sailing in a northward direction; 12 Blenheim and 24 Wellington bombers were dispatched to attack this group but the attack was not successful. The British Admiralty, receiving reports of major German naval movements, incorrectly assumed the Germans were launching a major attack into the Atlantic Ocean. The Home Fleet departed from Scapa Flow at 2115 hours, while the 1st Cruiser Squadron disembarked the troops already on board in order to prepare for a battle on the open seas. Nevertheless, British submarines continued to patrol the European coast for German activity rather than going out to the open seas; HMS Shark and HMS Seawolf departed Harwich naval base to patrol off Dutch coast, while HMS Clyde and HMS Thistle departed Scapa Flow to patrol the coast of Norway.

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