queen of the channel dunkirk

queen of the channel dunkirk

HMS Medway Queen became part of the flotilla of little ships. The following is an excerpt from TIME-LIFE’s new special edition, World War II: Dunkirk, available on Amazon. The ship is now a floating museum at the Gillingham Pier in Kent, England. He was also the overall architect of plans to defeat any German attack. Most were transports bringing in airborne troops, but these Junkers 52s had only been brought to bear by scouring training schools and their losses severely set back aircrew training. The idea was that Britain would take the lead at sea, France on land, and both would contribute to air power. Spearheading the attack and apparently ruling the skies was the Luftwaffe, with its mix of screaming Stuka dive-bombers, Messerschmitt fighters and Heinkel and Dornier medium bombers. His imperturbability was legendary, and he was given the task of overseeing the last stages of the evacuation. Although many of those left at Dunkirk had sand poured into the radiators and fuel tanks, a large proportion were salvageable and were used again. Her crew estimated that they had picked up 7000 men and shot down 3 enemy aircraft. Tennant arrived on the afternoon 27 May, and had been told they might be able to evacuate 45,000 troops if he were lucky. Some of the many ships carrying Allied forces across the English Channel from Dunkirk, France, between May 29 and June 3, 1940, are shown en route for England during the successful Operation Dynamo in World War II. The halt order was not lifted until late on 26 May, and no panzers began moving again until the following morning – by which time the perimeter at Dunkirk had been secured and the evacuation had begun. The reason for defeat in France in 1940 was not a failure in equipment, tactics or training, but the BEF’s small size: just 10 divisions. Builder: William Denny & Brothers, Dumbarton. The Queen of the Channel, under Captain O'Dell was one of the larger ships to use the harbour's eastern breakwater to embark troops early on the morning of May 28th. Von Rundstedt, piqued to have been humiliated by Halder, complained to Hitler. The loss of this ship saw daylight operations restricted to naval vessels and the smaller vessels. Mention Dunkirk to most British people and images spring to mind of queues of men on beaches awaiting evacuation, little ships bravely crossing the Channel and naval officers brilliantly marshalling their limited resources to bring home over 338,000 men from northern France in May and early June 1940.. Satisfied they had fulfilled their task, they signalled, “BEF evacuated. On the 28th May the passenger steamer Queen of the Channel successfully became the first ship to dock against the mole, 950 troops boarding her, and within a hour she was bound for England. The Queen of the Channel was the result and, as Shippick was unable to pay for her outright, ... before long both ships would be back in the Navy minesweeping again during WW2 and taking part in the evacuation of Dunkirk. Service Speed: 20 knots Queen of the Channel (1) was built for the New Medway SP Co in 1936, the year that it was taken over by GSN. Rickard, J (16 February 2008), Operation Dynamo, the evacuation from Dunkirk, 27 May-4 June 1940, http://www.historyofwar.org/articles/operation_dynamo.html. Fearing a large attack, the German commander decided to halt his troops. Approximately 950 troops were on the ship when she left Dunkirk at about 4.00am headed for Dover. Clearly, they needed to be taught a lesson. Royal Sovereign (3) (New Medway: 1937-1940) The larger unarmed vessels were now restricted to operating at night. Return to Ship menu They were there, nonetheless, and managed to shoot 326 enemy aircraft during the operation, while losing of 121 of their own. Over nine days, between 26 May and 4 June 1940, warships of the Royal and French navies together with civilian craft successfully evacuated more than 338,000 British and Allied troops from the beaches of Dunkirk, in the remarkable Operation Dynamo. But in so doing, Hitler very possibly. Then they, too, set sail for England. Length: 255ft She was bombed and sunk at the Dunkirk evacuation in 1940. This was a salivatingly large number for the vehicle-short Germans. The Bren light machine-gun did not have the rate of fire of the German MG34, but was solid, accurate, and more dependable than its far friskier German rival. The profitably for this larger vessel would be its use on these cross channel 'no passport' workings from the Thames & North Kent ports following the easing of Government restrictions on this type of travel. The PS Medway Queen is a paddle driven steamship, ... patrolling the Strait of Dover and the English Channel. In May 1940 Operation Dynamo was launched to rescue the retreating British Army soldiers from Dunkirk in northern France. You're now subscribed to our newsletter. He immediately countermanded all Halder’s decisions and gave the authority to lift the halt order back to von Rundstedt. Mona's Queen was the sixth vessel to be built in the Birkenhead yards for the Isle of Man Steam Packet Company, and was completed in June 1934. He became separated from most of his men, making him among the last in his battalion to be lifted. Until he was fired on 19 May (following the catastrophic collapse of the Meuse Front), General Maurice Gamelin was commander-in-chief of all French and British forces in France. Day 3: Tonry and Saunders intercept enemy orders for a pincer movement on Dunkirk. The ship is now a floating museum at the Gillingham Pier in Kent, England. Watch Dunkirk on Now Player. It was an amazing operation. Pre-war rearmament had sensibly focussed on naval and air power. Britain in the early years of the war has often been perceived to have been full of Blimpish commanders, out-of-date equipment and antiquated, stuck-in-the-mud tactics. ... For more on the Battle for France and the Dunkirk … Churchill insisted that even putting out feelers would be crossing a Rubicon from which there could be no return. This meant they could only ever play a supporting role in the action. At high tide the wreck is at a depth of approximately twenty three metres. Queen of the Channel was built to replace a ship of the same name, which had been lost assisting in the Dunkirk evacuations. It is widely accepted that the Germans had it pretty much their own way from the moment they launched Case Yellow (the invasion of France and the Low Countries) on 10 May 1940. The ship was launched on May 3rd 1935 and was the first British diesel engined vessel for cross channel passenger/excursion use, being equipped with two 1,500hp Sulzer Type TS diesel engines. There was no obvious way of reaching the western mole across the harbour’s mouth, but the eastern mole began from the harbour wall and was easily accessible. He did not understand new mobile panzer tactics and feared his armoured tank divisions were getting too far ahead of the foot-slogging infantry. ’Dunkirk’ is a great war movie marred by Christopher Nolan’s usual tricks. Save over 50% on a gift subscription to their favourite history magazine. There seems to be a problem, please try again. ... to the French port of Dunkirk. Embarkation progresses slowly and Tennant signals the Queen of the Channel to come alongside the eastern breakwater to speed up the process. • The London-based fireboat Massey Shaw set sail for Dunkirk to help fight fires. The damage sustained by the Queen of the Channel proved fatal and the ship sank on May 28th 1940. The Dorrien Rose would reach Dover at about 2pm with its valuable cargo. However, that first day of the campaign was the worst the Luftwaffe suffered for some three years. ... YouTube channel. Britain’s army may have been small in 1940, but on 27 May, the country came its closest to defeat. For Britain, an island nation with a large seaborne empire, the Royal Navy was the senior service. If you subscribe to BBC History Magazine Print or Digital Editions then you can unlock 10 years’ worth of archived history material fully searchable by Topic, Location, Period and Person. Thick, black smoke from burning oil storage tanks rose to some 15,000 feet and spread across the entire area. To save the BEF, an evacuation by sea was organised under the direction of Admiral Bertram Ramsay. There was just this constant shuttle of ships. The evacuation at Dunkirk was called a ‘miracle’ by Winston Churchill. Constructed under special survey in accordance with the requirements of Lloyd's Register of Shipping and Classification, Mona's Queen was classed as A.1 "with freeboard for Irish Channel Service." Between 26 May and 4 June 1940, a mammoth 338,000 troops were rescued from the beaches of Dunkirk, France, in the remarkable Operation Dynamo, Here, military historian James Holland shares some lesser-known facts about the evacuation at Dunkirk, and the fighting that led up to it…. Image credit: Press Association Images. The official website for BBC History Magazine, BBC History Revealed and BBC World Histories Magazine, Save over 50% on a BBC History Magazine or BBC History Revealed gift subscription, In 1940, as British troops retreated through France under fire from an advancing German Army, a massive evacuation was launched to bring the soldiers safely home. During the Battle of Dunkirk from May 26 Georgians. How the British Managed to Escape Dunkirk and Keep Fighting. Crew: ?? The mole withstood this strain without any obvious difficulty. There are many other stories about those desperate weeks as the Germans swept across … (To put that in perspective, the worst day for the Luftwaffe in the Battle of Britain saw them lose 67 aircraft). On top of that, a staggering 64,000 vehicles were abandoned. Compared to the smaller paddle steamers that the Queen of the Channel was replacing, this ship was definately a step up with regard to the appointment of her fixtures and fittings. image caption The Medway Queen was one of the "little ships" that helped rescue thousands of soldiers during the Dunkirk evacuations of WW2 Queen of the Channel (1) (New Medway: 1936-1940) Queen of the Channel (1) was built for the New Medway SP Co in 1936, the year that it was taken over by GSN. Comments: Queen of the Channel was built to replace a ship of the same name, which had been lost assisting in the Dunkirk evacuations. Shortly into the journey the ship came under attack from German dive bombers. This order – which was to be in place for 24 hours – was reinforced by Field Marshal von Rundstedt. In May 1940 Operation Dynamo was launched to rescue the retreating British Army soldiers from Dunkirk in northern France. • The London-based fireboat Massey Shaw set sail for Dunkirk to help fight fires. At 11.30pm, Alexander, along with Captain Bill Tennant, boarded a motor launch and began a last tour of the harbour and then the length of the beaches as far as Bray Dunes, calling out to any last remaining troops. Logical military thinking played no part in Hitler’s decision, rather, it was motivated by a determination to show who was boss and stamp his authority on his subordinates. Ships would come at two abreast, with people walking across one ship onto another ship as it was moored up against the east mole. When General Halder, army chief of staff, heard about the order, he immediately rescinded it and furthermore transferred all panzer divisions to rapidly close in on Dunkirk from the north. Passengers: ?? It is widely accepted that the Germans had it pretty much their … Port of Registry: London The newcomer was larger than her predecessor and was typical of the Denny built motor ships for the General Steam Navigation Co Ltd and its … Of the 338,226 men lifted from Dunkirk, 239,555 – the vast majority – were taken from the eastern mole. By this time, the perimeter had collapsed. Halifax briefly threatened to resign, which almost certainly would have brought down the government. Alexander had taken over as acting commander of the BEF on 31 May. Some of the many ships carrying Allied forces across the English Channel from Dunkirk, France, between May 29 and June 3, 1940, are shown en route for England during the successful Operation Dynamo in World War II. The situation looked bleak. 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