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D Day 70 – HMS Wager

While HMS Wager and the 27th Destroyer Flotilla were not awarded the Battle Honour NORMANDY 1944 the destroyer, with many other units of the Home Fleet, were at sea in home waters. The Home Fleet was required to be available to intercept any enemy ship interference during the allied landings in Normandy (Operation NEPTUNE).

Some 6,000 ships, from battleships to landing craft and fast patrol boats were involved on D Day, landing some 130,000 troops on the five beaches.

That maritime losses on that day, and in the ensuing weeks, were relatively light is, of course, in part owing to the outer screen provided tens and hundreds of miles away from the Normandy coast.

Let’s remember them today.

In July, HMS Wager sailed for the Far East to play a part in the war with Japan. She was at Gibraltar by early August.



Explosion on HMS Kempenfelt

HMS Kempenfelt was the leader of the 27th Destroyer Flotilla, of which HMS Wager was part.  This album of photographs belonged to a member of her ship’s company and most were taken, it is thought, in 1944-45.  Many certainly enhance the HMS Wager story, and some show sailors at work in a destroyer that was almost exactly the same in size and fittings and operated with the various ships in her flotilla.

The two extracts in the document below are taken from newspapers in Sydney about an accident that happened on HMS Kempenfelt in November 1945.

Explosion on HMS Kempenfelt

More images from HMS Kempenfelt