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Tetrarch (N77)

Built By: Vickers (Barrow)
Build Group: T Group 1
Fate: After leaving Alexandria on 17th October 1941 en-route home to the UK via Malta and Gibraltar, the Commanding Officer, Lieutenant Commander Greenway, was requested to carry out a short patrol off Cavioli Island after leaving Malta and before proceeding to Gibraltar.

Her last recorded position was established with Submarine HMS P34 as being 37 Degrees 28 Minutes North, 12 Degrees 35 Minutes East in the Sicilian Channel on 27th October 1941. No more was heard from the submarine she was presumed to have been lost in a minefield either in the Sicilian Channel or off the Island of Cavioli on 27th October 1941.
Tetrarch Sketch
Tetrarch Sketch

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Tetrarch Found

Submitted by Jean-Pierre Misson - 19/01/2019

Several wrecks in a limited perimeter, off Tabarka Tunisia, have been sonar-located and identified as "Submarine" from their sonar image alone. Out of a total of five British submarines, three have been identified as being . These are Tabarka Wrecks 2F, 4M'a, 4M'b. Wreck 2F (previously believed to be HMS Tigris) has been conclusively identified as being HMS Tetrarch.

A renewed analysis of the images has allowed the identification of Mine Wells on the Starboard Ballast Tank of this wreck (only the well nearest to the muzzle of Torpedo Tube 9 is clearly visible). The distortion on image 3 is due to the need to adjust the range and pivot of the picture so as to see the Mine Well and its Shutter (both being physically "near-flat" on the ballast tank).

Out of all the units that are candidates to being found off Tabarka only HMS Tetrarch had the additional capability of Mine Laying. Thus, it can now be said that HMS Tetrarch has been conclusively identified off Tabarka, in Position: 37° 04' 32" N, 8° 52' 34" E. Depth: circa 70-75m

The astounding result of this identification is that the minefield that caused so many foundering's must have been laid earlier than the date when HMS Tetrarch was lost in late 1941. Therefore, the earlier assumption that the minefield might have been planted by the German 3S Flotilla, is to be totally dismissed. This minefield was installed by the Italian Navy because the 3S Flotilla started laying mines off the Tunisian coast in late 1942, at the earliest.

So far , no record has been found about an Italian minefield planted off Tabarka in late 1941 but this can be explained by the fact that many Italian records did not survive the war. The the overall sonar picture of the forward section of the submarine clearly shows that a portion of the prow is missing as a result of hitting a mine.

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This document might be further elaborated, later. At this point in time it is sufficient to say that we now know where the Crew of HMS Tetrarch is resting. There were no survivors, Tabarka Wreck 2F is their tomb.

Roll of Honour

Name Rank Number Hons Age
Anderson, James  Stoker 1st Class  P/KX 92952    22
Bancroft, Arthur  Leading Seaman  D/J 98441    37
Bell, William George  Leading Stoker  C/KX 83886  MID*  26
Brown, Fred  Petty Officer  D/JX 126889    31
Brown, Hugh McDowell  Able Seaman (RNVR)  P/CD/X 1885  DSM  26
Campion, James Owen Parker  Stoker 1st Class  C/KX 98186    22
Chapman, Henry Coles  Leading Steward  C/L 14546    35
Cornish-Bowden, Edward John  Lieutenant    MID  23
Davies, Harold  Able Seaman  D/SSX 28076    21
Davies, William Joseph  Engine Room Artificer 4th Class  P/SMX 21    25
Deeley, Stanley  Stoker 1st Class  P/K 66174    36
Elliott, John  Chief Engine Room Artificer  P/M 37034  DSM  35
Evans, Eric Richard  Able Seaman  P/JX 167384    22
Evans, Wilfred Edgar  Sub Lieutenant (RNR)    MID  21
Greenway, George Henry  Lieutenant Commander    MID  32
Commanding Officer
Hall, George Albert  Able Seaman  P/JX 140549    24
Heard, Harry  Leading Cook (S)  C/MX 57453    22
Hearnden, William Henry  Petty Officer  C/JX 142635  MID  38
Hepworth, Ernest  Leading Stoker  D/KX 84655    25
Hornsby, Edwin  Petty Officer Telegraphist  C/JX 133738    28
Houston, Robert Bell  Sub Lieutenant     
Houston, Robert Bell Sub. Lieutenant (No BMD Information)
Jacobs, Arthur Roy  Stoker 1st Class  P/KX 90693    27
Jennings, Thomas Cyril  Stoker 1st Class  P/KX 90714    22
Jones, Llewelyn Wyn  Ordinary Seaman  D/JX 198346    24
Kennett, Douglas Frank  Able Seaman  P/JX 149114    20
Kerry, Douglas James  Telegraphist  C/JX 155603    20
Lickiss, Geoffrey Lucas  Leading Telegraphist  D/JX 134641  MID  26
Livingstone, Gordon Ross  Petty Officer Telegraphist  D/JX135448  MID  26
Lucas, Henry George  Leading Stoker  P/KX 92569    24
Martin, Sidney John  Telegraphist  D/JX 138482    25
McBride, James Nelson  Petty Officer  D/JX 137696  MID  25
Meyrick, Kenneth Walter McKenzie  Lieutenant    MID 
From HMS/m Talisman
Molesworth, Charles Albert  Able Seaman  D/JX 135674    26
Morrison, Kenneth  Able Seaman  P/SSX 24391    21
Murdoch, Andrew  Stoker 1st Class  P/KX 92902    22
Newman, William James  Engine Room Artificer 1st Class  D/M 37676    34
Norris, Walter Thomas  Engine Room Artificer 3rd Class  C/MX 52906  MID  26
Northover, McKenna Tom  Yeoman of Signals  P/JX 132658  MID  28
Parsons, William  Engine Room Artificer 4th Class  D/MX 60248    25
Pearson, William  Stoker Petty Officer  D/K 55802    40
Pepper, William Edward  Leading Seaman  C/JX 145671    21
Phillips, Peter Royston  Engineer Lieutenant    MID  27
Quested, Harry Alfred  Leading Seaman  C/KX 86887    24
Richards, Brinley  Able Seaman  D/SSX 13791    28
Richards, Thomas Glyndwr  Stoker 1st Class  D/K 65509    35
Rowland, Jacob  Able Seaman  D/SSX 14877  MID  27
Scott, William  Stoker Petty Officer  D/KX 77897    34
Sharples, Gerard Flint  Able Seaman  D/JX 152776    20
Shinn, Victor Thomas  Engine Room Artificer 3rd Class  P/MX 49544    24
Simmons, John Frederick  Stoker 1st Class  P/JX 93419    21
Smith, Frank William  Able Seaman  C/JX 199511    23
Spencer, Kenneth H  Able Seaman (RNZN)  NZ 1345    22
Stavert, Douglas Riddell  Lieutenant      23
From HMS/m Unique
Stone, Cyril Percy  Stoker 2nd Class  C/LX 23652    25
CWGC has C/SKX 971
Tavolier, Leonard Enrico  Able Seaman  P/JX 183394    22
Taylor, Robert  Stoker 1st Class  P/KX 84702    25
Walmsley, Charles Henry  Lieutenant (RNR)    MID  27
From HMS/m Upright
Weetman, Arthur James  Leading Stoker  D/KX 83549  MID  26
CWGC has Weetman, Arthur D/KX 83542 (No James and Incorrect Number)
Whitehead, Charles Christopher Cyril  Leading Seaman  C/JX137530    24
Willcocks, Richard Burke  Ordinary Seaman  C/JX 199879    20
Wilson, Colin  Engine Room Artificer 4th Class  C/MX 76812    28
Winter, Ronald Heriot  Leading Stoker  P/KX 91395    22


24-08-1938 : Laid Down
24-08-1938 : Launched
04-07-1939 : Completed
13-04-1940 : Tetrarch's first patrol was carried out in C9 - the Lillesand sector. The boat made what was thought to be an unsuccessful attack on a transport and as a result was depth-charged for 43 hours. Surfaced for 3 minutes in the middle of enemy vessels and fired torpedoes at A/S trawler
23-04-1940 : 18:30 Sighted a Southbound enemy convoy bearing 270, distance about 5 nautical miles. The convoy was made up of a large merchant vessel and three escorts. They are described as destroyers in the patrol report but they were not destroyers. The vessels were Ahrensburg on passage from Larvik to Fredrikshaven according to Rowher, escorted by T153, T155, F5, F8 and the minesweepers R33, R37 and R40

18:33 Tetrarch fired two torpedoes, range 4,000 yards, flat calm. Went deep and retired at high speed.

1837: Returned to periscope depth. Three escorting destroyers were seen approaching down the torpedo tracks a high speed. One of the destroyers was only 1500 yards away. Tetrarch went to 300 feet at full speed. Trim lost. Mills temporarily lost control and the boat dived to 400'

At 20:00 hours A/S trawlers joined in the hunt for Tetrarch

22:22 Surfaced, sighted two trawlers 1,000 yards away bearing down fast. Two torpedoes were fired. One one torpedo hit the UB boat. German sources indicate just three survivors.

Tetrarch was kept down at night and was therefore unable to charge batteries. Tetrarch eventually surfaced at 2130 hours on 24 April 1940 and set course back to Rosyth
20-05-1940 : HMS Tetrarch captures the Danish fishing vessel Emmanuel and sinks the Danish fishing vessel Terieven with scuttling charges in the North Sea west of Denmark.
16-06-1940 : HMS Tetrarch torpedoes and sinks the German tanker Samland south-west of Lista, Norway.
04-11-1940 : HMS Tetrarch torpedoes and sinks the Italian merchant Snia Amba off Benghazi, Libya.
12-04-1941 : HMS Tetrarch torpedoes and sinks the Italian tanker Persiano about 30 nautical miles north-west of Tripoli, Libya.
18-05-1941 : HMS Tetrarch torpedoes and sinks the Italian merchant Giovinezza off Bengasi, Libya.
22-07-1941 : HMS Tetrarch claims to have damaged a sailing vessel with gunfire in the Aegean off Karlovassi.
25-07-1941 : HMS Tetrarch attacks the Greek tanker Olympos off Gaidero Island, Greece. The vessel is not hit.
27-07-1941 : HMS Tetrarch sinks the Italian sailing vessel Nicita with gunfire 5 nautical miles south of Kos, Greece.
23-08-1941 : HMS Tetrarch sinks the Italian sailing vessels V 72/Fratelli Garre and V 113/Francesco Garre with gunfire in the Gulf of Syrte.
26-09-1941 : HMS Tetrarch torpedoes sinks the Italian merchant Citta di Bastia in the Aegean Sea about 18 nautical miles south of Milos Island, Greece.
27-09-1941 : HMS Tetrarch sinks the Greek sailing vessel Panagiotis Kramottos with gunfire south-west of Milos Island, Greece.
28-09-1941 : HMS Tetrarch torpedoes and damages the German merchant Yalova in the Aegean Sea south of Agios Giorgios Island.
27-11-1941 : HMS Tetrarch left Malta on 26th October 1941 bound for Gibraltar. The route she was to take meant her passing through a known minefield. On Monday 27th she communicated with P34 who was in the same area. This was the last contact with the submarine. It is believed that she struck a mine on 27th.


Good evening. I would like to say a big thank you for the information you have given here. I am researching my family and my uncle was leading seaman C/JX 145671 William Edward Pepper, lost on Tetrarch. I have read some conflicting reports that the wreck off Tabarka cannot be Tetrarch.
Thank you again Patrick Pepper
   Patrick Pepper Tue, 7 May 2019
Thank you. My uncle McKenna Tom Northover went down with HMS Tetrarch. I have the various regrets from the King , "mentioned in dispatches" etc that my Aunt gave me before she died. A sad part of history, he was 28 years old.
   ken carroll Tue, 5 Oct 2021
Unfortunately, the above claim of a submarine graveyard at Tabarka is groundless. This has already been exposed as a hoax. None of these submarines ever operated in the Tabarka area. HMS Tetrarch route was along the southwest coast of Sicily (where she was to cross two Italian minefields) and hence to patrol off Cavoli Island (Sardinia) before proceeding to Gibraltar. Tabarka was only a fishing village at the time and held no interest to the belligerents.
   Platon Alexiades Thu, 12 May 2022

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