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Built By: Vickers (Barrow)
Build Group: H Group 2
Fate: At the time that the German Battle Cruisers Scharnhorst and Prinz Eugen were expected to leave Breast, H31 was sent to form part of a circle of submarines around the French Port. H31 was escorted as far as the Wolfe Rock and left her escort on 19th December 1941.

Nothing more was seen or heard of H31 which was presumed lost in the Atlantic along the Northwest Coast of Spain. There were no survivors.

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Roll of Honour

Name Rank Number Hons Age
Bailey, Joseph Stanley  Stoker 1st Class  C/KX 117457    24
CWGC has C/KX 117457 In ADM104/127 P144 Service number is given as C/JX 227846
Bartlett, Edward  Stoker Petty Officer  P/K 65556    39
Benson, Ronald  Ordinary Telegraphist  C/JX 277411    22
CWGC has C/JX 277411 In ADM104/127 P282 Service number is given as C/JX 190448
Campbell, Peter Donald Nathaniel  Sub Lieutenant (RNR)      28
Carson, John Harris  Stoker 2nd Class  P/SKX 224    20
Champion, Charles Henry Bernard  Able Seaman  P/JX 132918  DSM  28
Corry, James  Leading Stoker  D/KX 90385    30
Crager, Alfred John  Engine Room Artificer 5th Class  C/MX 76209    20
Doughty, Harold  Able Seaman  P/SSX 23412    21
Dowdell, Frank Harold George  Telegraphist  P/JX 161520    18
Ensby, Albert Edward  Able Seaman  D/JX 212952    24
CWGC has D/JX 212952 In ADM104/130 P1209 Service number is given as D/JX 221299
Eynon, Maurice  Lieutenant (RNVR)      35
Fraser, Allan  Engine Room Artificer 4th Class  C/MX 70093    23
Gibbs, Frank Bridger  Lieutenant    MID  27
Commanding Officer
Goodman, Levi Thomas  Leading Seaman  P/J 67558    41
Grainger, Joseph James  Stoker 2nd Class  D/SKX 1220    20
Harley, William Leonard George  Telegraphist  C/JX 190830    25
Holroyd, Wilfred  Leading Stoker  C/K 64818    28
Hurley, John Bartle  Able Seaman  P/JX 263581    20
CWGC has P/JX 263581 In ADM104/132 P1209 Service number is given as P/JX 203581
Jarvis, Eric Newton  Chief Engine Room Artificer  C/M 38817    32
Jarvis, Kenneth Sylvester  Able Seaman  C/JX 178820    23
Jones, Norman Cyril  Signalman  C/SSX 34101    19
Maynard, Arthur Edward  Able Seaman  C/SSX 32166    20
Merritt, Alexander Ian  Lieutenant (RNZN)      23
Morse, Robert Frederick  Ordinary Signaller  C/JX 233982    20
Munns, Sidney William Thomas  Able Seaman  C/J 91162    40
O'Brien, Wilfred Augustine  Leading Telegraphist  P/J 20699    45
CWGC has O'Brien, Wilfrid Augustine. All other papers WILFRED
Richards, John Conway  Able Seaman  P/JX 141477    22
Rollins, Stanley Edward  Engine Room Artificer 4th Class  C/MX 92306    21
Smith, Alexander  Able Seaman  P/JX 154288    26
Spencer, Dennis  Petty Officer  C/JX 126519    31
Stamper, John McGregor  Leading Stoker  C/KX 91029    23
Truckle, Major Thomas  Petty Officer  C/JX 136099    33


19-04-1917 : Laid Down
16-11-1918 : Launched
21-02-1919 : Completed
18-07-1940 : Sank UJ-126 in the North Sea
24-12-1941 : HMS H-31 sunk by mine in Bay of Biscay

In December 1941 news was received of a possible break out from Brest, by the German battleships Scharnhorst, Gneisenau and Prinz Eugen. In expectation of this eight submarines were sent to the area but although the breakout did not take place, H31 failed to return. The submarine had sailed from Falmouth on 19th December. She was requested to signal her position on the 24th but did not do so.

1 comment

Between 24 April to 13 June and 15 July to 31 August of 1941, HMS H31 was at HMS Ferret Londonderry for A/S Exercises.

My Grandfather & Grandmother had a Sailors Home for tea/lunch & the sailors from H31 were among them. My grandmother took it very hard when H31 was reported missing in 1942. They lived above the EBNI showroom in Strabane, Co. Tyrone. Grandfather oversaw the electrical supply to HMS Ferret. He was in the RN from 1915 until 1928 and then the RNR until 1938
   Richard Waring Wed, 18 May 2022

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