SUBMARINE / BRITISH NAVY / CAPTURE OF U-BOAT 570
Six: DSM Geo VI first type (MX 51828 E. W. Wardell Elect Art RN), 1939-45 star, Atlantic star, Burma star with Pacific clasp, War medal (mounted as group of five) and R.F.R. L.S. & G.C. George VI 2nd type (MX 51828 E. W. Wardell DSM, PO B22328 C.E.A., R.F.R. (serial number crudely stamped, RFR part double struck).
Comes with miniature set of 6,
Two H.M. silver model prize oars, length 6", the blades engraved "Artificers Gig 1937" and ditto 1938; a submarine pin back brooch badge, length 21⁄2" and various WWII press cuttings.
DSM LG 5.1.1943 "For great courage, skill and determination in a successful submarine patrol" Electrical Artificer 2nd Class Edgar William Wardell P/MX 51828.
Seedie's Roll gives his submarine as H.M.S. Graph, a captured U-Boat 570 (see details below. Investiture took place on 2.2.1943).
With a Croydon press clipping with additional information on him and picture, showing that he was reported missing when his ship, H.M.S. Hecla was sunk in the Mediterranean Sea on 11/11/1942 (Torpedoed by U-505). His age at the time was 20 years old. It was H.M.S. Hecla that prepared the captured U-Boat U-570 to sail to the UK under it's own power, the ship which Wardell transferred to after being commissioned in the Royal Navy, to win his D.C.M. Unter-seeboat 570 was a Type VIIC Submarine of the Kriegsmarine that was captured and commissioned into the Royal Navy as H.M.S. Graph (P715). She was the only German submarine to be taken into Allied service and to fight for both sides in World War II.
She was laid down by Bloom & Voss at Hamburg on 21, May 1940 and commissioned on 15, May 1942. She completed one training voyage between the 15, May 1941 and 1, August 1941. On August, 23 1941 she departed from Trondheim, Norway under the command of Kapitänleutnant Hans-Joachim Rahmlow.
On 27th, August 1941 in the North Atlantic south of Iceland, in position 62 degrees 15' N. 18 degrees 35' N., she was attacked and damaged by a depth-charged from SqnLdr JH Thompson RAF in his 269 Squadron Hudson 'S' on anti-submarine patrol from Icelan. Shortly after his initial attack he saw a white flag being waved from the conning tower. He contacted his superiors and was told to fly watch while they considered how they could get vessels to the area. He was relieved by a Catalina flying boat in the evening and finally after 12 hours the trawler Northern Chief showed up but the weather was too bad to capture her at that time so she waited for reinforcements that arrived during the night in the form of the trawlers Kingston Agate, Windermere and Wastwater and the destroyer H.M.S. Burwell. The last ship to the scene was the Canadian H.M.C.S. Niagara.
Squadron leader J. H. Thompson circled the crippled U-boat until assistance arrived, first in the form of a PBY Catalina Flying Boat, and then in the Trawler Northern Chief, later assisted by the destroyers H.M.S. Burwell and H.M.C.S. Niagara. She was towed to Thorlaks-hafn, Iceland, and beached there for essential repairs, then towed to Barrow-in-Furness where she was fully repaired. Since by the time the Royal Navy had taken possession of U-570 the German submariners had destroyed all their code books and coding equipment, there was no need to keep her captured secrets (unlike in the case of U-Boat 110).
Although the crew had destroyed all the important documents, the submarine itself gave the Navy important information about the boat's capabilities. Subsequently, it was found that there was hardly anything wrong with the boat, except for the loss of some control systems, so the surprise had led to panic and surrender. Taken over by the RN, Lt. Cdr. G.R. Colvin (ex-Sunfish) led a survey, (the U-boat had only been in commission for just over three months)
She was commissioned into the Royal Navy as H.M.S. Graph on 19th, September 1941 and assigned the Royal Navy pennant number N46. She saw active service in 1942 and 1943.
On 21st, October 1942, she fired a torpedo at the U-Boat 333 but missed. In December, 1942, HMS Graph sighted the German cruiser Admiral Hipper on her return to Altenfjord following the Battle of the Barents Sea but Hipper was traveling too fast to be attacked. Three hours later Graph sighted one German destroyer towing a second, attacked, but again, her torpedoes missed.
Defects led to her being placed in reserve and she was decommissioned from active service in February 1944. She was being towed by H.M.S. Allegiance to the Clyde for scrapping when she ran aground on the west coast of Islay, Scotland on 20th, March 1944. She was finally salvaged and scrapped in 1947.
Family Group of Eight comprising :
Pair: BWM, Victory (F 17196 W. E. Wardell AC1 RNAS)
250lb Mk XI Aerial Depth Charge
Mk. I-IV - 1,500lb and 1,850lb
First introduced for Bomber Command Operations in April 1940, the Mk. I - IV was sturdily built and designed to withstand drops from aircraft flying at 200 mph at altitudes varying from 100 to 15,000ft. Containing approximately 750lb of explosives the mine could be detonated using various triggering devices depending on the application required. The type along with the Mk. V and VII became the standard mine used by the Command until being replaced by the Mk. VI in 1944.
Mk. V - 1,000lb
Introduced into service sometime during 1940-41 this mine was a smaller version of the Mk. I-IV. Containing between 625lb and 675lb of explosives this mine was usually detonated using magnetic triggers, although it could be configured to use our triggering devices.
Mk. VI - 2,000lb
A similar mine to the of the Mk. I-IV in that it could be configured in various ways to dentate. This mine differed only in that it contained 2,000lb of explosives in comparison to the 750lb of the Mk. I-IV.
Mk. VII - 1,000lb
Introduced in 1944, the Mk.VII was an improved version on the Mk.V although no increase in the size of explosive charge was made.
Showing comparative sizes, the Graph is pictured here (outboard), with Storm middle and Thrasher left, alongside HMS Forth, Holy Loch, June.
A U-Boat being forced to surface.
Of interest are the attitudes of men such as Prien, Kretschmer, Oehrn, Oesten, Luth, and Herbert Wernertoward in the post-war years when speaking of Hans-Joachim Rahmlow, whose U-570 was surrendered to the RAF without a struggle in 1941, its capture giving away to the British many German secrets, all believed he betrayed the code they lived by. One former U-boat officer says "I suppose these days he would have been exonerated due to a temporary incapacity. Unsuitability. Insanity. Something like that." When pressed for his own opinions, he replies "I would have strung him up."
A Lockheed Hudson bomber preparing to drop depth-charges.
U-Boat 570 given up by the commander... Hans-Joachim Rahmlow at the helm.
Commissioned as German U-570 on 15 May 1941.
The German submarine U-570 was captured by Britain on 27 August 1941 in the North Atlantic south of Iceland, in position 62.15N, 18.35W, after being damaged by a British Hudson aircraft (Sqdn. 269/S). She was towed to Thorlaks-hafn, Iceland and salvaged.
She was commissioned into the Royal Navy as HMS Graph on 19 September 1941. HMS Graph was decommissioned from active service in February 1944. Graph was lost on 20 March 1944 when she ran aground on the westcoast of the Island of Islay, Scotland.
Showing comparative sizes, the Graph is pictured here (outboard), with Storm middle and Thrasher left, alongside HMS Forth, Holy Loch, June.
A U-Boat being forced to surface.
The destroyer was the most capable and most feared escort vessel the allies possessed early in the war. It was larger and more heavily armed than the destroyer escort and considerably faster. They were also of shallow draught, making it difficult to torpedo them.
Adolf Hitler thought U-570 was the most dangerous submarine in the world, he never expected a Barrow man to use it against him. That man was Albert Cheale, who at his death in 1990 was Barrow's oldest submariner and proud holder of eight medals - including the Distinguished Service Medal.
Albert Cheale DSM was chief signalman aboard the U-570 - by then captured and renamed HMS Graph by the British. In a letter kept by his widow Sarah, 78, of Ainslie Street, Mr Cheale described his most dangerous mission against a pair of destroyers in the icy seas off Norway just after Christmas 1942.
Albert Cheale was one of life's survivors - a brave man in a battle, but lucky enough to avoid the tragedies which later struck submarines he served on, such as Resolution and Narwald. His luck only ran out when it came to getting a break from the fighting. As a chief signalman with a knowledge of German he was always in demand and last in line for any leave.
Mrs. Cheale, now 78, of Ainslie Street, Barrow, said: "He was in Malta after two-and-a-half years overseas and was expecting to be sent home. "Then someone called out 'Cheale, you have to go out again,' "Everyone started laughing, as the Navy had classed Malta as 'home waters'. His 'leave' was over."
Between 1939 and 1945 he was in Barrow with his family for all too brief spells. She said: "We used to write to each other every day, hear nothing for ages and then get a stack of post all at once.
"Once the Japanese depth-charged his submarine. It hit the bottom and managed to reach Australia. "I got a telegram saying he was missing and never heard another word for 12 months. "I was expecting my third child and did not know if he was alive or dead."
Mr Cheale did survive the war and left the navy in 1950 after 26 years - 15 of those years in the dangerous world of submarines.
In later life he worked at the shipyard, ran the Union Hotel in Ulverston, and the Derby Hotel in Barrow. He died, aged 79, and was given a full naval funeral. Mrs Cheale said: "On the submarines they lived in squalor. "At the start of a mission they would walk doubled-up on the top of food boxes. When they could walk straight it was only because they were running out of food."
Washing was a rare luxury and Mr Cheale would return home with a beard and moustache and clothes, which had to be boiled and bleached to get them clean. "I never saw much of him during the war but I had one of the best husbands going," she said. Mr Cheale was awarded eight medals for his naval service. His Distinguished Service Medal was one of just 7,000 issued during the Second World War.
He also had a long service and good conduct medal, South Atlantic, Africa and Burma Stars and the War Medal. Ironically he lived a few doors down Ainslie Street from First World War veteran and Military Medal holder George Hudson. Can any street have a better record of bravery?
The Distinguished Service Medal was presented at Buckingham Palace in 1943 where Mrs Cheale was a guest and recalls seeing the present Queen, then Princess Elizabeth, in her military uniform.
Founded by King George V in October 1914 as a junior award to the Conspicuous Gallantry Medal for acts of gallantry by Petty Officers and men of the Royal Navy and NCO's and men of the Royal Marines. It may also be awarded to men of equivalent rank in the other two services and the Merchant Navy, when serving afloat. A 2nd award bar is also available.
The German point-of-view
(Translated from the German language)
Captain second lieutenant Rahmlow, commander of U-570, had a disabled boat - intended for to sink. Even in confusion and panic the crew should have prevailed in the crucial minutes in this action, the fear may have affected the decision of the commander around concerning his own life, without doubt however had Rahmlow by its act - whether consciously or unconsciously - German Naval rules had been broken.
The attitude was entirely different than other Naval commanders when it comes to the U-Boat. Courage came first, even if it in similar circumstances where a vessel was disabled. were. They thought at the most of the rescue of the own life. In contrast to the practices on the other ships the commander among the few survivors naturally nearly always was with sinking a submarine.
Therefore Rahmlow and its crew met the revenge of German naval officers in the POW camp. In the camp British soldiers had to protect Rahmlow with force of arms before the Feme imposed over him.
In the case of U-570 that did not succeed. No different one than the notorious Kretschmer, which was in this Scottish officer camp in Grizedale camp-oldest, organized a so-called honour court against the former officer Berndt. The young officer was condemned to erase "the disgrace", by being supposed to sink the submarine, which was located in a bay at the west coast of Scotland. Only by an additional self sinking the "honour" of the German war navy would be again producible. It is characteristic of the education of many naval officers that the "awake officer" had not thought thoroughly about the attitude of his commander and the judgment of the illegal "honour court" assumed. With the implementation of this enterprise the officer broke the code of the camp and was shot.
THE BELOW MATERIAL WAS TRANSLATED FROM GERMAN
Submarines in the II world war and their whereabouts
The case Rahmlow or
The history of U570
27. August 1941 noon 13,00 o'clock.
On this day an event takes its beginning, in whose consequence a German submarine in fully functional condition should fall for the first time into the hands of the British which in the further war process still many other German boats the calamity will become.
U 570 stood about 80 nautical mile south before Iceland and ran in 40 m depth. Kptlt. Hans Joachim Rahmlow let go on Sehrohrtiefe around a panorama to take. The heave was however deart jerky that a travel into Sehrohrtiefe was not possible. Kptlt. Rahmlow let blow on and emerge therefore. And in a sea-area that well-known-measured constantly by British airplanes one patroulliert.
Exactly in this instant a British Hudson bomber of the coastal command flies to approximately 1000 m height over the place at the U 570 to the water surface comes. The observer in the pulpit discovers the boat immediately and gives the pilot, major J. A. Thompson, an indication. This lets the machine fall immediately with howling engines downward and released with approx. 30 m four 115-Kilo-Wasserbomben. The boat was above and the bridge guard drawn up hardly roared the Colonel of you man into the tower "alarm - tides". The boat goes immediately again on depth - nevertheless too late.
The Hudson had platziert exactly their Wabos apart from U 570, which is straight only in 14 m depth.
An insanity detonation tears the largest part up of the battery cells, the e-machine falls out and almost all measuring instruments shatters. The light goes out. The boat sags immediately, as deeply none can determine more, because the depth announcement was unclearly. From the tail water break-down is announced (proves later than mistake it were only destroyed measuring instruments). Through some leakages in the foredeck water penetrates into the boat and the danger of the chlorine gasification however nevertheless becomes acute, if sea water with battery acid comes into contact.
The boat goes with strong Vorlastigkeit into the depth and cannot not be intercepted with the tiefenrudern.
"all man figure eight out" roars the left and lets the front dipping cell 5 blow on at the same time. The boat stops.
But which happens now?
An experienced commander such as Prien, Kretzschmer, topp or other one would have brought and tries now peace in the boat the boat to far depth to hold to the machine the further search would give up.
But Kptlt. Rahmlow (on its first enemy travel as a commander was) lets blow on immediately all dipping cells and the boat shoots like a rubber ball to the surface. The boat floated now unpowered in the heave.
The British machine had thrown and attacked however all off your Wabos already now from aft coming from all pipes firing the helpless boat. Over 2000 shot on the boat were fired. A part of the crew from U570 had come already topside and tried the 2 cm-Flak clear to make around Gegenwehr to carry out. They created it not and had behind the tower into covering to constantly go. For instance a half Duzend of people were hurt.
The commander let red shining stars fire over the airplane the defenselessness of the boat to signal. The machine adjusted the fire also immediately, circled the boat and transmitted after reinforcement. Into the meantime on U 570 a white flag was moved. (Kptlt. Rahmlow says later, this would have passed instruction without its knowledge and it would have given the white flag to catch up immediately.)
The left with some people made itself intermediate to the Reparaturabeiten and you created it even to set the e-plant in course. The light burned again, the spring pumps ran and also the radio communication system was clear. Kptlt. Rahmlow let last radiogram set off still another and instructed then the destruction of the radio. It decides to sink the boat. For this purpose it lets all secret documents and the cryptographic machine destroy.
In the late afternoon it became already dark and the Hudson was by a Catalina catalina-Flugboot of the 209 relay abgeloes appears a British corvette at the Horziont - it was the "Northern Chief". Now would have had to be sunk, and the preparations should be made.
Doches came completely differently:
On the corvette a folding book signal was sighted and the British captain instructed to set a bright light. At the night on U570 all were destroyed, which was to be destroyed; Sea charts; Artillery ammunition; Warheads and torpedoes. Most was thrown over board. But one did not sink why. The threat of the corvette to open with the first sign of the self sinking immediately the fire and save none, to take which seriously.
The next morning, bekann like it to come had. It appeared still further corvettes and destroyers on the scene and driving rafts suspended in preparation the submarine too entern. Against 8.00 o'clock gave it probably obviously a misunderstanding with the British, because an airplane arrived abrupt, occupied U570 with Wabos. The British admiralty will state later that it was a mistake of the pilot.
The destroyers tried a little later to take "Burwell" and "Windermere" U 570 to the hawsers. Three attempts failed. At 10.30 o'clock lay the submarine over nose dangerously deeply in the water. The Englishmen instructed Kptl. Rahmlow somewhat dagagen to undertake. This signaled however that the boat would not be to be held. There by board of the destroyer and met again four men was shot sudden partially heavily. What should that?
Here it must be said that the statements of the different involved ones contradict themselves substantially, which the reaction was the attack renewed by U 570 on the bombardment both the near-flying machine at the vortag, and on. The radio operator, Harry awl man, wrote in a letter at Paul Carell that Kptlt. Rahmlow had already instructed hours before to attach a white sheet at the tower parapet wall of U570. This sheet was then swivelled with the destroyer attack.
Kptlt. Rahmlow rejected the thesis of the white flag after its return out its war shank energetically and tried its resolution for surrender to rechfertigen.
Under deck meanwhile some crew members had seized the resolution to open the tide valves over with the boat to go down. But in addition it was too late, because at 13.50 o'clock appeared first armed Englishmen of the "Kingston Agate" at deck. The wounded ones were brought first by board. Thus against 16.00 o'clock U 570 over tail in drag taken and on board the destroyers brought the entire crew.
The dragging hawser tore three hours later again off, but it succeeded to set the "Northern Chief" the submarine before Thorlakshafn on Iceland to the beach.
Now it was in British hand!!!
The first investigations of the British resulted in that the druckkoerper was completely intact.
Here the most important results:
One the fuel oil shelter had a hole.
In the front sail-hurry was water to be determined, which had penetrated probably obviously by the outboard catches or the torpedo pipes.
Diesel and e-machine ran, likewise compressors and auxiliary machines.
In the front battery 21 of the 62 cell had torn, in the rear 26.
The light burned still.
The radio had been made useless by the German crew.
The Horchgeraet functioned likewise still.
The damage summary in the confidential report of the British admiralty is summarized that the boat was altogether dipable and a to some extent brought in crew would not have had difficulties dip thereby. Why hadn't U 570 thus dipped after the attack of the Hudson?
Peter E. Cremer mentioned ' Ali ', an experienced commander of submarine of the IITH world war (U152; U333; U2519) writes in addition:
"success and failure of a submarine depend mainly on the capability of the commander. Rahmlow was 32 years old. Despite its 13 service years in the navy it was kommandiert only recently to the submarine weapon. Its first submarine was a training boat in the Baltic Sea and its second U 570.
Thus were it and its ship on the first enemy travel. It would have had the confidence of its crew credit; because, although he had something from a sharp superior actually, it was not unpopular. Although it emerged incautiously, without (by the Sehrohr) to have looked around before, it left alarm dipping immediately, when the depth charges of the Hudson exploded. A bold and resoluter commander the panic to have settled and the conquest of its ship to have prevented. R. resulted."
So far Ali Cremer over Hans Joachim Rahmlow.
For the British U 570 was a gift. It was dragged to England and literally examined up to the last screw. All units of the boat were examined for your functionality. For the English ship civil engineers the druckkoerper was most interesting and here naturally stated you that the Germans had built the up to then strongest well-known druckkoerper, which consisted thick steel plates of 20,5 millimeters were electrically welded and a water pressure of 15 Atue in 1ö meter could bear depth (in practice was even still more). Was from this realization the English admiralty totally surprised so far was accepted that German boats between 90 and 100 m could dip deeply.
Accordingly also the fuzes of the WaBos were adjusted.
Immediately you let the fuzes of all adapt your WaBos, so that these could be adjusted now also to submerged depths over 200 m.
In the Sepember 1942 the Englishmen placed the restored boat under the new name H.M.S. "graph" in service and it ran out on 8 October 1942 under an experienced commander to its first enemy travel into the Biscaya. It there successfully as case of submarine assigned around returning German boats vorzugaukeln, it would have a comrade before itself, who suddenly welcomes it then with a torpedo charge.
On 21 October it met the returning schwerstbeschaedigte U 333, whose commander ' Ali ' Cremer lay wounded in his bunk. "graph" fired a Viererfaecher, which was seen fortunately punctual however and U 333 escaped.
Only four U-Boats were captured during WWII.
U-110 - "The Secret Capture"
May 9, 1941. This is what most people view as the most important capture of the entire war and it was so secret that even the crew of U-110 did not know of it! U-110 (on its second patrol under the command of Kptlt Fritz Julius Lemp) had been attacking a convoy along with U-201 (Oblt Adalbert Schnee) when Lemp left his periscope up too long (probably to confirm a kill, he sank two ships on that day amounting to 7500 GRT) and the escort HMS Aubretia noticed it and rushed to the scene dropping depth charges.
U-110 survived the first attacks but then HMS Bulldog and HMS Broadway came and join in the hunt. U-110 was forced to surface and HMS Bulldog immediately went onto ramming course (its commander realized at the very last moment that a capture might come off and tried to evade hitting U-110which he almost did) which Lemp noticed and ordered "Abandon Ship". Lemp figured that since the boat was going to be rammed (and presumably sunk) its secrets were safe within it. Only when he was in the water did he realize that the boat was not sinking and attempted to swim back and prevent capture and that was the last seen of him. Many say he was shot in the water by a British sailor but that may not be at all true.
The British made several journeys between U-110 and HMS Bulldog to collect whatever they could get their hands on inside the boat. This must have been a real treat as U-110 was abandoned in a hurry and being a IXB class she did not sink as rapidly as VIIC would likely have done. It is very likely that numerous U-boats were sunk using the material found inside U-110.
The day after the boat was captured someone realized that the allies already had the most important part of U-110, namely the secret documents and Enigma machine and that the Germans might find out that the British had the boat soon and, assuming the worst, change all codes and cipher system. The boat "accidentally" sank when being towed to Britain. 15 men were killed in the action and 32 captured. Lemp himself did not survive as noted above.
The boat left Trondheim, Norway under the command of Kptlt Hans Rahmlow on August 23rd, 1941 to operate in the North Atlantic on her first operational patrol before going to her La Pallice (France) base.
She was captured when Rahmlow raised his periscope at 1100hrs on August 27th and saw nothing and thus surfaced his almost stationary boat. Directly above (in its periscope 'blind spot') U-570was Sqn Ldr J. H. Thompson in his Hudson 'S' on anti-submarine patrol from Iceland. He noticed the dream target and placed several well placed depth charges all around U-570 severely damaging her.
Shortly after his initial attack he saw a white flag being waved from the tower indicating the surrender. He contacted his superiors and was told to fly watch while they figured out how they could get vessels to the area. He was relieved by a Catalina flying boat in the evening and finally after 12 hours the trawler Northern Chief showed up but the weather was too bad to capture her at that time so she waited for reinforcements that arrived during the night in the form of the trawlers Kingston Agate, Windermere and Wastwater and the destroyer HMS Burwell. The last ship to the scene was the Canadian HMCS Niagara.
When she was finally captured by life rafts in the heavy seas there had been ample time to destroy all secret documents and internal fittings.
U-570 was towed to Iceland and beached there while being hastingly repaired before she was towed to Britain where she was to be commissioned into the Royal Navy as HMS Graph (pictured below) on Sept 29, 1941.
As HMS Graph she even later fired a torpedo towards U-333 but missed. She later ran aground on the Island of Islay of Scotland. She was broken up in 1961.
Captured by the US Navy Hunter-Killer group 22.3 which included the aircraft carrier USS Guadalcanal and the destroyers USS Pillsbury, Pope, Flaherty, Jenks and Chatelain. The capture took place on Sunday June 4, 1944. 1 German was killed in the incident.
She was boarded by crew members from HMCS Chilliwack on March 6, 1944. They were only able to hoist the white ensign and collect some documents before she sank. At that time most of the information they could have gotten from those documents was likely already known by the allies. 12 Germans died.
She was captured by HMS Loch Glendhu on April 12, 1945 in the Irish Sea (south of Isle of Man) and taken in tow. She sank a few hours later when being towed by HMS Loch More. 9 Germans died in this incident.
The Germans captured one enemy submarine during World War Two (at sea), the British HMS Seal Commanded by Lt. Cmdr. R. P. Lonsdale on May 4, 1940. The boat was to mine the Kattegat but was detected by German anti-submarine patrols (after laying her mines) and accurately depth charged causing her to land on the sea floor. The crew managed to surface the badly damaged boat and attempted to reach Swedish waters but were captured en route by a German seaplane and a pre-war trawler named Franken that had been commissioned into the Kriegsmarine as UJ 128 (Unterseebootsjäger)
HMS Seal was commissioned into the Kriegsmarine as UB but had limited value except for propaganda use. She was scuttled on May 3, 1945 in Heikendorf Bay (in position 54.22N, 10.11E). Her wreck was later raised and broken up.