HMS Fabius log book

Discussion in 'The War at Sea' started by raygreer, Aug 10, 2019.

  1. raygreer

    raygreer Junior Member

    I would like to see the log for a Royal Navy destroyer HMS Fabius particularly when she that served in the Adriatic Sea in December 1944. How can I access the ship's log?
  2. Tricky Dicky

    Tricky Dicky Don'tre member

    Hi Ray - from some quick searching HMS Fabius was a shore station not an actual ship not sure if you realise that

    HMS Fabius (RN base, Taranto)

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  3. CL1

    CL1 116th LAA and 92nd (Loyals) LAA,Royal Artillery

    Ray if you post what you are after then forum members might be able to assist you
  4. raygreer

    raygreer Junior Member

    Thanks TD. I though she was a real ship. There are various notes about crew members receiving awards for minesweeping in the Adriatic and other activities.
    I am trying to find out the details of a British destroyer that was at Zadar on the Yugoslavia coast on 31 Dec 1944.
  5. Tricky Dicky

    Tricky Dicky Don'tre member

    HMS Colombo, British light cruiser, WW2
    November Transferred to Adriatic to provide AA defence in support
    of military operations.
    11th Deployed at Zadar and accepted surrender of German
    Not sure what other ships might have been in this potentially 'mini fleet' - if there was one at all

    Zadar History
    In late October 1944 the German army and most of the Italian civilian administration abandoned the city. On 31 October 1944, the Partisans seized the city, until then a part of Mussolini's Italian Social Republic. At the start of World War II, Zadar had a population of 24,000; by the end of 1944, this had decreased to 6,000. Though controlled by the Partisans, Zadar remained under nominal Italian sovereignty until the Paris Peace Treaties that took effect on 15 September 1947.

    Action of 1 November 1944 - Wikipedia you may find something in here or from further research. However it seems that by Dec 1944 it was basically finished - all the action etc was in Nov 1944

    These 2 destroyers seem to have been there " Royal Navy sortied two Type II Hunt-class destroyers, HMS Avon Vale and HMS Wheatland"

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  6. Mr Jinks

    Mr Jinks Bit of a Cad

    HMS Atherstone ? Perhaps one of two destroyers operating from Ist Island she was in Company with HMS Aldenham on December 14th 1944 when she (Aldenham) was sunk by a mine off Pag which I believe is near Zadar ? Aldenham was the last destroyer lost in action I think?
    The Adriatic flotilla consisted of Aldenham, Atherstone, Avon Vale, Lamerton, Lauderdale, Wheatland, Wilton, Brocklesby and Quantock.

    HMS Atherstone, escort destroyer, WW2

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  7. Tricky Dicky

    Tricky Dicky Don'tre member

    HMS Wheatland, escort destroyer
    1st Sank German Torpedo Boat TA20 and Corvettes UJ202 and UJ208 south of Lussino.
    Three officers and 68 ratings captured.
    15th Bombarded shore targets at Bar, Yugoslavia
    28th Deployed with sister destroyer ALDENHAM to support landings at Peg, Yugoslavia
    (Operation EXTERMINATE)
    December Adriatic deployment in continuation.

    1 9 4 5
    January Support of Adriatic military operations and patrol deployment in continuation.
    March Taken in hand for refit in Taranto.

    World War 2 In Review No. 3: Warships
    Operation Exterminate was to carry out landings on Pag Island

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  8. timuk

    timuk Well-Known Member

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  9. wightspirit

    wightspirit Junior Member

  10. Tricky Dicky

    Tricky Dicky Don'tre member

  11. raygreer

    raygreer Junior Member

    Thanks very much for the responses. My reason for trying to find the name of the ship is that on 1 Jan 1945 a British Destroyer took a party of New Zealand POW escapees, downed US aircrew and other servicemen from Zadar (Zara) in Croatia to Bari in Italy to be reunited with the Allies. My uncle Gilbert Greer and four other New Zealand POW escapes were in the group who had just spent 45 days traveling to Zara from Monte Pratis di Sopra in NE Italy, assisted by the partisans. Coincidentally a New Zealand signalman from my uncle's home town in New Zealand was serving on the destroyer. I'll have a look in the ships logs for the potential ships.
  12. wightspirit

    wightspirit Junior Member

    You might be able to find a POW record by searching the National Archives website under the WO (War Office) reference. I had a quick look but nothing obvious but there are some surnames of Greer without initials, and if you're lucky he might be there.

    Dave W
  13. timuk

    timuk Well-Known Member

    If you can find a copy this book may have the answer. Contents list shows it covers escaping NZ POWs in Italy.
    Auckland Libraries catalogue -- Prisoners of war / by W. Wynne Mason.
    7. The Italian Armistice (July - December 1943) (Events preceding and immediately following the Italian Armistice ; Transit and permanent camps in Germany and Austria ; Escapes from Italy after the Armistice ; New Zealanders captured in the Italian and Aegean campaigns ; Protection of the interests of prisoners of war and civilians ; Relief work)
    8. The middle phase of the war against Japan (June 1942 - December 1944) (The turn of the tide in the Far East ; Prisoner-of-war and civilian interment camps ; Protection of the interests of prisoners of war and civilians ; Relief supplies for the Far East ; Japanese prisoners of war in New Zealand)
    9. The year of the Allied invasion of Western Europe (January - December 1944) (The events of 1944 and German camps from late 1943 onwards ; The war in Italy in 1944 and escapes to Allied lines ; Reception of ex-prisoners of war in Italy ; Escaped prisoners in Switzerland ; Civilians in Europe ; Protection of the rights of prisoners of war and civilians ; Relief work ; Enemy aliens in New Zealand)
    10. The last months of the war in Europe (January - May 1945) (Movements of prisoners and liberation in Germany ; Last escapes to Allied lines in Italy ; Release and evacuation of camps in Austria ; Evacuation of prisoners released by Russian forces ; Protection of the interests of prisoners of war and civilians ; Relief work ; Enemy aliens in New Zealand).

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  14. raygreer

    raygreer Junior Member

    Thanks Tim,
    I do have a copy of that book and it doesn't have the information that I'm after.
  15. timuk

    timuk Well-Known Member

    Yes, I've now found the reference and can see your problem. For the benefit of others:

    Eight New Zealanders were among a large party which left Zara by British warship on the last day of the year. They had come through Yugoslavia in three separate parties, all of whose journeys had been arranged in November by military missions in north-east Italy. One group of five1 had been together since the break-up of Campo PG 107, and had eventually been forced into the hills by German and Fascist activity in the district where they were being cared for by Italians.

    1 Ptes A. W. Bassett (21 Bn), T. C. Green, G. A. Greer, and L. S. A. Mair (all 26 Bn), and S. D. Rutherford (20 Bn).

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  16. raygreer

    raygreer Junior Member

    Yes that's the only direct reference to my uncle that I could find, but it was instrumental in recently tracking down the families of the other NZ POW escapees. One of whom, Tom Green (Dowding) wrote a detailed memoir of his time during WW2 and as a POW including their journey of 45 days through Yugoslavia in Nov-Dec 1944 to Zadar on the coast in Croatia. They were accompanied by a group of 9 downed US aircrew from a B-24 bomber that crashed in October 1944 at Morsano al Tangliamento where the NZers were hiding out on a farm with an Italian family for 14 months.
    I'm in the process of researching their experiences with the aim to putting it all together in a book.
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  17. Paul Gaskell

    Paul Gaskell New Member

    Hi Ray, I came across your post by chance and decided to join the Forum because my uncle (aged 97) has just written a book called Never Forgotten 1920's - 2020's, A Liverpool Life. In it, he describes being on watch for HMS Colombo in Zadar in December 1944. For his age, his recall of events in the book is amazing. A bedraggled group claiming to be POW's arrived while he was taking has turn on the watch and he remembers the exact time - ten minutes before the end of his watch. They were dressed strangely but there were "semblances of British uniforms amongst them and they had bags on their feet". My uncle says in the book that he had a long talk to the youngest of them after his watch. They were taken on board and given drinks and a hot meal. He says an MTB (Motor Torpedo Boat) took them from HMS Colombo to Italy the next day. I suppose it's possible that the MTB took them to a Destroyer which then transited them to Italy. All of this is in the book at the end of Chapter 7. The book is on Amazon but marked as temporarily out-of-stock at the moment. If you want a copy, I can put you in touch with my brother who is the publisher. Obviously this could be coincidence and Ernie doesn't mention NZ in his account. However, according to the book, Colombo was the only ship in dock at Zadar in December 1944. In fact, according to the book, the port at Zadar was so small that the only way Colombo could get out was to reverse out. Really hope this helps, Paul Gaskell.
  18. davidbfpo

    davidbfpo Patron Patron


    Ray has not logged on since November 2019, he only posted three threads and may no longer be with us. I will send him a PM to say you've added your update. This assumes the email he registered with is still valid. You, incidentally cannot use the PM facility until you've posted x5. Standby.
  19. Paul Gaskell

    Paul Gaskell New Member

    OK, thanks davidbfpo. I appreciate your response.

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