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Convoys PQ15-QP11

Engagement/Skirmish Name : Convoys PQ15-QP11

Date(s) : 29 April 1942 - 14 May 1942

Part of : Second World War , Atlantic Naval operations , Arctic Convoys ,

Type of battle : Sea


The returning convoy QP11 came under heavy attack from U-boats, aircraft and destroyers. The escort, under the command of Rear-Admiral Bonham-Carter in HMS Edinburgh, was six destroyers, four corvettes and a trawler. U-456 hit Edinburgh with two torpedoes and blew off most of her stern. While making a slow passage, between two and three knots, back to Murmansk, she was attacked by three German destroyers. These destroyers had attempted to attack the convoy but had been seen off by the four remaining destroyers in spite of the Germans having heavier fire power. One of the attackers was sunk by Edinburgh and the other two drew off but not before firing torpedoes which hit and almost cut Edinburgh in two. Her crew were all taken off by mine-sweepers from Murmansk. PQ15 had a much stronger escort and was only hit by torpedo-bombers before dense fog shrouded the convoy for the remainder of the voyage.
The total 'bill' for the two convoys and escorts was four merchantmen, one cruiser, two destroyers badly damaged. the destroyer HMS Punjabi rammed and sunk by HMS Duke of York and the Polish submarine Jastrzab sunk in error 100 miles from its planned patrol area. Almost as a footnote the cruiser HMS Trinidad, sent out to replace Edinburgh a Bonham-Carter's flagship, was sunk by a bomb on her way home from Murmansk.