HMS Foresight (H68)

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HMS Foresight
Career (UK) RN Ensign
Name: HMS Foresight
Ordered: 17 March 1933
1933 Naval Programme
Laid down: 21 July 1933
Launched: 29 June 1934
Commissioned: 15 May 1935
Fate: Sunk, Operation Pedestal, August 1942
General characteristics
Class & type: F-class destroyer
Displacement: 1,405 long tons (1,428 t) standard
1,940 long tons (1,970 t) full load
Length: 318 ft 3 in (97.00 m) p/p
329 ft (100 m) o/a
Beam: 33 ft 3 in (10.13 m)
Draught: 12 ft 6 in (3.81 m)
Propulsion: 3 × Admiralty 3-drum boilers, 300 psi
2 shaft Parsons geared turbines
36,000 shp (27,000 kW)
Speed: 36 knots (41 mph; 67 km/h)
Range: 6,000 nmi (11,000 km) at 15 kn (17 mph; 28 km/h)
Endurance: 471 tons fuel oil
Complement: 145 (173 in 1942)
Armament: • 4 × 4.7-inch/45 (120 mm) Mk XVIII (4×1)
• 8 × .50-inch Vickers machine guns (2×4)
• 5 × .303-inch machine guns (5×1)
• 8 × 21-inch (533 mm) torpedo tubes (2×4)
• 2 × depth charge racks
• 60 depth charges
1940:
• 4 × 21-inch (533 mm) torpedo tubes replaced by
• 1 × 3 in (76.2 mm)/50 and 2 × 20 mm Oerlikon (2×1)

HMS Foresight was a Royal Navy F-class destroyer. She operated as a fast minesweeper during World War II and was scuttled after being damaged in an aerial attack during Operation Pedestal, an attempt to bring supplies to Malta.

On 18 June 1941 Foresight took part in the sinking of the German submarine U-138 west of Spain, together with her sister ships HMS Faulknor, HMS Fearless, HMS Forester and HMS Foxhound.

On 6 April 1942 she left Scapa Flow for a routine convoy patrol, escorting convoy PQ-14. Of the twenty four ships that made up the convoy, sixteen were forced by unseasonal ice and bad weather to return to Iceland and another was sunk by a U-boat. Along with the remaining seven convoy vessels, Foresight arrived in Murmansk on 19 April. She left, on 29 April, to cover the return Convoy QP 11. On 30 April the German submarine U-456 (under the command of Captain Max-Martin Teichert), which had been alerted to the presence of the convoy by German aerial reconnaissance whilst en route from the Kola Peninsula, fired a torpedo into the starboard side of the cruiser HMS Edinburgh. The ship began to list heavily. Soon after, Teichert launched a second torpedo, which struck the stern of Edinburgh, wrecking her steering equipment and effectively crippling her. Taken in tow, she attempted to limp back to Murmansk but was hounded constantly by German torpedo bombers. On 2 May she was attacked by three German destroyers off Bear Island and torpedoed yet again. As she began to sink, her crew abandoned the ship and took refuge in accompanying destroyers. Foresight had the task of scuttling the cruiser.

During Operation Pedestal on 12 August 1942, while operating as a fast minesweeper, Foresight took a torpedo from an Italian Savoia-Marchetti SM.79 aircraft, which severed her stern section from the rest of the hull. All power failed. The Tribal-class destroyer HMS Tartar arrived but the attempt to tow the stricken vessel was fruitless and she was scuttled in the Mediterranean Sea (37°40′N 10°00′W / 37.667°N 10.000°W / 37.667; -10.000) by a torpedo after her crew had been taken off the doomed ship on the 13th."HMS Foresight of the Royal Navy". Uboat. Retrieved 13 August 2013. 

Bibliography[edit]

  • English, John (1993). Amazon to Ivanhoe: British Standard Destroyers of the 1930s. Kendal, England: World Ship Society. ISBN 0-905617-64-9. 
  • Friedman, Norman (2009). British Destroyers From Earliest Days to the Second World War. Annapolis, Maryland: Naval Institute Press. ISBN 978-1-59114-081-8. 
  • Lenton, H. T. (1998). British & Commonwealth Warships of the Second World War. Annapolis, Maryland: Naval Institute Press. ISBN 1-55750-048-7. 
  • Rohwer, Jürgen (2005). Chronology of the War at Sea 1939–1945: The Naval History of World War Two (Third Revised ed.). Annapolis, Maryland: Naval Institute Press. ISBN 1-59114-119-2. 
  • Whitley, M. J. (1988). Destroyers of World War 2. Annapolis, Maryland: Naval Institute Press. ISBN 0-87021-326-1.