HMS Glorious

HMS Glorious was the second of the three Courageous-class battlecruisers built for the Royal Navy during the First World War. Designed to support the Baltic Project championed by the First Sea Lord, Lord Fisher, they were relatively lightly armed and armoured. Glorious was completed in late 1916 and spent the war patrolling the North Sea. She participated in the Second Battle of Heligoland Bight in November 1917 and was present when the German High Seas Fleet surrendered a year later.

Glorious was paid off after the war, but was rebuilt as an aircraft carrier during the late 1920s. She could carry 30 per cent more aircraft than her half-sister Furious which had a similar tonnage. After re-commissioning in 1930, she spent most of her career operating in the Mediterranean Sea. After the start of the Second World War, Glorious spent the rest of 1939 unsuccessfully hunting for the commerce-raiding German cruiser Admiral Graf Spee in the Indian Ocean before returning to the Mediterranean. She was recalled home in April 1940 to support operations in Norway. While evacuating British aircraft from Norway in June, the ship was sunk by the German battleships Scharnhorst and Gneisenau in the North Sea with the loss of over 1,200 lives.

HMS Glorious
Glorious shortly after her conversion into an aircraft carrier
United Kingdom
Name: Glorious
Ordered: 14 March 1915
Builder: Harland and Wolff, Belfast
Cost: £1,967,223
Yard number: 482-484
Laid down: 1 May 1915
Launched: 20 April 1916
Completed: 31 December 1916
Commissioned: January 1917
Reclassified: Converted to aircraft carrier, February 1924 to March 1930
Identification: Pennant number: 77
Nickname(s): Laborious
Fate: Sunk by Scharnhorst and Gneisenau, 8 June 1940
General characteristics as light battlecruiser
Class and type: Courageous-class battlecruiser
  • 19,180 long tons (19,488 t) normal
  • 22,360 long tons (22,719 t) (deep load)
Length: 786 ft 9 in (239.8 m) (o/a)
Beam: 81 ft (24.7 m)
Draught: 25 ft 10 in (7.9 m)
Installed power:
Propulsion: 4 shafts; 4 geared steam turbines,
Speed: 32 knots (59 km/h; 37 mph)
Range: 6,000 nmi (11,000 km; 6,900 mi) at 20 knots (37 km/h; 23 mph)
Complement: 842 officers and men
General characteristics (where different)
Class and type: Courageous-class aircraft carrier
  • 24,970 long tons (25,370 t) (normal)
  • 27,419 long tons (27,859 t) (deep load)
  • 735 ft 1.5 in (224.1 m) (p/p)
  • 786 ft 9 in (239.8 m) (o/a)
Beam: 90 ft 6 in (27.6 m) (at waterline)
Draught: 27.75 ft (8.5 m)
Speed: 30 knots (56 km/h; 35 mph)
Range: 5,860 nmi (10,850 km; 6,740 mi) at 16 knots (30 km/h; 18 mph)
Complement: 793 + 490 air group (1931)
Armament: 16 × single QF 4.7-inch (120 mm) Mark VIII dual-purpose guns
  • Belt: 2–3 in (51–76 mm)
  • Decks: .75–1 in (19–25 mm)
  • Bulkhead: 2–3 in (51–76 mm)
Aircraft carried: 48

Design and description

HMS Glorious (1917) profile drawing
Three-view drawing as completed in 1917

During the First World War, Admiral Fisher was prevented from ordering an improved version of the preceding Renown-class battlecruisers by a wartime restriction that banned construction of ships larger than light cruisers. To obtain ships suitable for traditional battlecruiser roles, such as scouting for fleets and hunting enemy raiders, he settled on a design with the minimal armour of a light cruiser and the armament of a battlecruiser. He justified their existence by claiming he needed fast, shallow-draught ships for his Baltic Project, a plan to invade Germany via its Baltic coast.[1][2]

Glorious had an overall length of 786 feet 9 inches (239.8 m), a beam of 81 feet (24.7 m), and a draught of 25 feet 10 inches (7.9 m) at deep load. She displaced 19,180 long tons (19,490 t) at load and 22,560 long tons (22,922 t) at deep load.[3] Glorious and her sisters were the first large warships in the Royal Navy to have geared steam turbines. The Parsons turbines were powered by eighteen Yarrow boilers. During the ship's abbreviated sea trials, she reached 31.42 knots (58.19 km/h; 36.16 mph).[4] The ship was designed to normally carry 750 long tons (760 t) of fuel oil, but could carry a maximum of 3,160 long tons (3,210 t). At full capacity, she could steam for an estimated 6,000 nautical miles (11,110 km; 6,900 mi) at 20 knots (37 km/h; 23 mph).[5]

Glorious carried four BL 15-inch (381 mm) Mark I guns in two twin-gun turrets, one each fore ('A') and aft ('Y'). Her secondary armament was 18 BL 4-inch (102 mm) Mark IX guns mounted in six triple mounts.[5] These mounts had the three breeches too close together and the 23 loaders tended to interfere with one another. This negated the mount's intended high rate of fire against torpedo boats and other smaller craft.[6] A pair of QF 3-inch (76 mm) 20 cwt[Note 1] anti-aircraft guns were fitted abreast of the mainmast on Glorious. She mounted two submerged tubes for 21-inch torpedoes and 10 torpedoes were carried.[5]

First World War

The Royal Navy during the First World War Q18130
Glorious at anchor during the First World War

Glorious' keel was laid down on 1 May 1915 by Harland and Wolff at their Belfast shipyard. She was launched on 20 April 1916 and completed on 14 October[7] at a cost of £1,967,223.[8] During her sea trials the following month, her sister Courageous sustained structural damage while running at full speed in a rough head sea and had the damaged areas stiffened shortly afterwards to prevent a recurrence.[9] Glorious did not suffer similar damage and did not receive her stiffening until 1918.[10] Upon commissioning, Courageous served with the 3rd Light Cruiser Squadron of the Grand Fleet. After most of the 1st Cruiser Squadron was sunk at the Battle of Jutland, the squadron was re-formed with Courageous and Glorious.[11] Glorious received six twin-tube torpedo mounts in mid-1917: one mount on each side of the mainmast on the upper deck and two mounts on each side of 'Y' turret on the quarterdeck.[12][13]

On 16 October 1917 the Admiralty received word of German ship movements, possibly indicating some sort of raid. Admiral Beatty, commander of the Grand Fleet, ordered most of his light cruisers and destroyers to sea in an effort to locate the enemy ships. Courageous and Glorious were not initially ordered to sea, but were sent to reinforce the 2nd Light Cruiser Squadron patrolling the central part of the North Sea later that day.[14] Two German Brummer-class light cruisers slipped through the gaps in the British patrols and destroyed a convoy bound for Norway during the morning of 17 October, but the British warships received no word of the engagement until that afternoon. The 1st Cruiser Squadron was ordered to intercept, but was unsuccessful as the German cruisers were faster than expected.[15]

Second Battle of Heligoland Bight

Throughout 1917 the Admiralty was becoming more concerned about German efforts to sweep paths through the British-laid minefields intended to restrict the actions of the High Seas Fleet and German submarines. A preliminary raid on German minesweeping forces on 31 October by light forces destroyed 10 small ships and the Admiralty decided on a larger operation to destroy the minesweepers and their light cruiser escorts. Based on intelligence reports, the Admiralty allocated the 1st Cruiser Squadron on 17 November 1917, with cover provided by the reinforced 1st Battlecruiser Squadron and distant cover by the battleships of the 1st Battle Squadron.[16]

The German ships, four light cruisers of II Scouting Force, eight destroyers, three divisions of minesweepers, eight sperrbrecher (cork-filled trawlers) and two trawlers to mark the swept route, were spotted at 7:30 am,[Note 2] silhouetted by the rising sun. Courageous and the light cruiser Cardiff opened fire with their forward guns seven minutes later. The Germans responded by laying a smoke screen and this made spotting targets very difficult. The British continued in pursuit, but lost track of most of the smaller ships in the smoke and concentrated fire on the light cruisers as opportunity permitted. One 15-inch shell hit a gun shield of SMS Pillau, but it did not affect her speed. At 8:33 the left-hand gun in Glorious's forward turret was wrecked when a shell detonated inside the gun barrel. At 9:30 the 1st Cruiser Squadron broke off their pursuit to avoid a minefield marked on their maps. The ships turned south, playing no further role in the battle.[17] Glorious required five days of repairs to fix damage caused by premature detonation and her own muzzle blast.[18] She fired 57 15-inch and 213 four-inch shells during the engagement.[19]

HMS Glorious - Battlecruiser
Glorious in 1918

Glorious received flying-off platforms on top of her turrets in 1918. A Sopwith Camel was carried on the rear turret and a Sopwith 1½ Strutter on the forward turret.[20] On 5 November 1918, Glorious was anchored off Burntisland in the Firth of Forth together with the seaplane tender Campania and the battleship Royal Oak when a sudden Force 10 squall caused Campania to drag her anchor and collide first with Royal Oak and then with Glorious. Both Royal Oak and Glorious suffered only minor damage, but Campania was holed by her collision with Royal Oak. Campania′s engine rooms flooded, and she settled by the stern and sank five hours later without loss of life.[21]

Glorious was present at the surrender of the German High Seas Fleet on 21 November 1918.[13] She was placed in reserve at Rosyth, Scotland, on 1 February 1919 and served as a turret drill ship, being also flagship of the rear-admiral commanding the Devonport Reserve between 1921 and 1922.[22]


HMS Glorious FL22991
Glorious at anchor, 1935; the doors to the lower hangar deck are open

The Washington Naval Treaty of 1922 limited the amount of capital ship tonnage and the Royal Navy was forced to scrap many of its older battleships and battlecruisers. However up to 66,000 long tons (67,059 t) of existing ships could be converted into aircraft carriers, for which the Courageous-class ships' large hulls and high speeds made them ideal candidates. Glorious began her conversion at Rosyth in 1924, and was towed to Devonport where she was completed on 24 February 1930. During the ship's post-conversion sea trials, she reached 29.47 knots (54.58 km/h; 33.91 mph).[23] Her 15-inch turrets were placed into storage and later reused during the Second World War for Vanguard, the world's last battleship to be built.[24]

Her new design improved on her half-sister Furious which lacked an island and a conventional funnel. All superstructure, guns, torpedo tubes, and fittings down to the main deck were removed. A two-storey hangar, each level 16 feet (4.9 m) high and 550 feet (167.6 m) long, was built on top of the remaining hull; the upper hangar level opened on to a short flight deck, below and forward of the main flight deck. The lower flying-off deck improved launch and recovery cycle flexibility until heavier fighters requiring longer takeoff rolls made the lower deck obsolete in the 1930s.[25] Two 46-by-48-foot (14.0 m × 14.6 m) lifts were installed fore and aft in the flight deck. An island with the bridge, flying-control station, and funnel was added on the starboard side as islands had been found not to contribute significantly to turbulence. By 1939 the ship could carry 34,500 imperial gallons (157,000 l; 41,400 US gal) of petrol for her aircraft.[26]

HMS Glorious underway 1936
Aerial view of Glorious under way, 1936

Glorious received a dual-purpose armament of sixteen QF 4.7-inch (120 mm) Mark VIII guns in single mounts. One mount was on each side of the lower flight deck and a pair was on the quarterdeck. The remaining twelve mounts were distributed along the sides of the ship.[27] During her 1935 refit, the ship received three octuple QF two-pounder (40 mm) pom-pom mounts, one on each side of the flying-off deck, forward of the 4.7-inch guns, and one behind the island on the flight deck. She also received a single quadruple mount for water-cooled Vickers 0.5 in (12.7 mm) AA machineguns.[28]

Glorious recommissioned on 24 February 1930 for service with the Mediterranean Fleet, but was attached to the Home Fleet from March to June 1930. She relieved Courageous in the Mediterranean Fleet in June 1930 and remained there until October 1939. In a fog on 1 April 1931 Glorious rammed the French ocean liner Florida amidships while steaming at 16 knots (30 km/h; 18 mph). The impact crumpled 60 feet (18.3 m) of the flying-off deck and killed 1 seaman aboard Glorious and 24 passengers and crew aboard Florida.[29][30] Glorious was forced to put into Gibraltar to temporary repairs. She had to sail to Malta for permanent repairs which lasted until September 1931. Sometime in the early 1930s, traverse arresting gear was installed. She was refitted at Devonport from July 1934 to July 1935 where she received two hydraulic accelerators (catapults) on her upper flight deck, which was also extended to the rear, her quarterdeck was raised one deck and she received her multiple pom-pom mounts. Glorious participated in the Coronation Fleet Review at Spithead on 20 May 1937 for King George VI before returning to the Mediterranean.[31]

Air group

Fairey Seals on HMS Glorious 1936
A squadron of Fairey Seals preparing for takeoff from Glorious, 1936

Glorious could carry up to 48 aircraft; when first recommissioned, she carried Fairey Flycatcher fighters, Blackburn Dart and Blackburn Ripon torpedo bombers, and Fairey IIIF reconnaissance planes of the Fleet Air Arm. From 1933 until Glorious returned to the United Kingdom in April 1940, aside from a period when refitting in the mid-1930s, she carried 802 Squadron which flew a mixture of nine Hawker Nimrod and three Hawker Osprey fighters, until re-equipping with a dozen Gloster Sea Gladiators in May 1939.[32] 812 and 823 Squadrons were embarked for reconnaissance and anti-ship attack missions. They flew the Blackburn Ripon, the Blackburn Baffin and the Fairey Swordfish torpedo bombers and as well as Fairey IIIF and Fairey Seal reconnaissance aircraft.[33] When Glorious recommissioned after her refit in 1935, 825 Squadron was embarked, initially with Fairey IIIFs, but the squadron converted to Fairey Swordfish in May 1936.[34]

Second World War

Glorious served briefly with the Mediterranean Fleet for a time after the Second World War broke out. In October 1939, she moved through the Suez Canal to the Indian Ocean where she became part of Force J which was organised to hunt for the Admiral Graf Spee in the Indian Ocean. It was not successful and Glorious remained in the Indian Ocean until December when she returned to the Mediterranean.[35]

Norwegian Campaign

She was recalled to the Home Fleet in April 1940 to provide air cover for British forces landing in Norway.[35] Eighteen Gloster Gladiators of No. 263 Squadron RAF were flown aboard to be transferred to Norwegian airbases. Eleven Blackburn Skuas of 803 Squadron, plus eighteen Sea Gladiators from 802 and 804 Squadrons were also embarked. Glorious and Ark Royal arrived off central Norway on 24 April where 263 Squadron was flown off and their own aircraft attacked targets in and south of Trondheim before Glorious had to return to Scapa Flow late on 27 April to refuel and embark new aircraft. Glorious's Sea Gladiators provided air cover for the two carriers. They damaged one Heinkel He 111 bomber on a reconnaissance mission. Before departing she transferred four serviceable Skuas to Ark Royal. She returned on 1 May, but had been unable to load many new aircraft because of poor weather. Only a dozen Swordfish of 823 Squadron, three Skuas and one Blackburn Roc managed to be flown aboard. The task force was under heavy air attack by the Luftwaffe all day and was withdrawn that evening. One Junkers Ju 87 Stuka dive bomber was shot down after it dropped its bomb by the Sea Gladiators on patrol.[36]

Glorious returned on 18 May with six Supermarine Walrus amphibious flying boats of 701 Squadron and 18 Hawker Hurricanes of No. 46 Squadron RAF. The latter aircraft had been loaded aboard by crane. The Walruses were quickly flown off to Harstad, but the airfield at Skånland was not yet ready for the Hurricanes and they were still aboard when Glorious returned to Scapa on 21 May. Glorious came back to the Narvik area on 26 May and the Hurricanes were quickly flown off.[37]

HMS Glorious last picture
Glorious photographed in May 1940 from the deck of Ark Royal; the destroyer with her is Diana

However, even this success proved to be ephemeral and British forces were ordered withdrawn a few days later. The evacuation (Operation Alphabet) began in the north on the night of 3/4 June and Glorious arrived off the coast on 2 June to provide support although she only carried nine Sea Gladiators of 802 and six Swordfish from 823 Squadrons for self-defence as it was hoped to evacuate the RAF fighters if at all possible. Ten Gladiators of 263 Squadron were flown aboard during the afternoon of 7 June and the Hurricanes of 46 Squadron were also flown aboard without any significant problems in the early evening despite having a much higher landing speed than the biplanes. These had been flown off from land bases to keep them from being destroyed in the evacuation after the pilots discovered that a 7-kilogram (15 lb) sandbag carried in the rear of the Hurricane allowed full brakes to be applied immediately on landing.[38] This was the first time that high-performance monoplanes without tailhooks had been landed on an aircraft carrier.[39]

The sinking

The commanding officer of Glorious, Captain Guy D'Oyly-Hughes, was a former submariner who had been executive officer of Courageous for 10 months.[40] He was granted permission to proceed independently to Scapa Flow in the early hours of 8 June to hold a court-martial of his Commander (Air), J. B. Heath, who had refused an order to carry out an attack on shore targets on the grounds that the targets were at best ill-defined and his aircraft were unsuited to the task, and who had been left behind in Scapa to await trial.[39] On the way through the Norwegian Sea the funnel smoke from Glorious and her two escorting destroyers, Acasta and Ardent, was spotted by the German battleships Scharnhorst and Gneisenau (part of Operation Juno) at about 15:46 pm.[Note 3] The British spotted the German ships shortly after 16:00 and Ardent was dispatched to investigate. Glorious did not alter course or increase speed. Five Swordfish were ordered to the flight deck and Action Stations were ordered 16:20. No combat air patrol was being flown, no aircraft were ready on the deck for quick take-off and there was no lookout in Glorious's crow's nest. Scharnhorst opened fire on Ardent at 16:27 at a range of 16,000 yards (15,000 m), causing the destroyer to withdraw, firing torpedoes and making a smoke screen. Ardent scored one hit with her 4.7-inch guns on Scharnhorst but was hit several times by the German ships' secondary armament and sank at 17:25.[41]

Scharnhorst switched her fire to Glorious at 16:32 and scored her first hit six minutes later on her third salvo, at a range of 26,000 yards (24,000 m), when one 28.3-centimetre (11.1 in) hit the forward flight deck and burst in the upper hangar, starting a large fire. This hit destroyed two Swordfish being prepared for flight and the hole in the flight deck prevented any other aircraft from taking off.[42] Splinters penetrated a boiler casing and caused a temporary drop in steam pressure. At 16:58 a second shell hit the homing beacon above the bridge and killed or wounded the captain and most of the personnel stationed there. Ardent's smokescreen became effective enough to impair the visibility of the Germans from about 16:58 to 17:20 so they ceased fire on Glorious.[41]

Glorious was hit again in the centre engine room at 17:20 and this caused her to lose speed and commence a slow circle to port. She also developed a list to starboard. The German ships closed to within 16,000 yards and continued to fire at her until 17:40. Glorious sank at 18:10,[41] approximately at 68°38′N 03°50′E / 68.633°N 3.833°ECoordinates: 68°38′N 03°50′E / 68.633°N 3.833°E,[43] with 43 survivors.[44]

As the German ships approached Glorious, Acasta, which had been trying to maintain the smokescreen, broke through her own smoke and fired two volleys of torpedoes at Scharnhorst. One of these hit the battleship at 17:34 abreast her rear turret and badly damaged her. Acasta also managed one hit from her 4.7-inch guns on Scharnhorst, but was riddled by German gunfire and sank at around 18:20.[41]

Survivors estimated that about 900 men abandoned Glorious. The German ships had suffered extensive damage themselves, and unaware that Allied ships were not in contact with Glorious beat a hasty retreat, and did not try to pick up survivors.[45] The Royal Navy meanwhile, knew nothing of the sinking until it was announced on German radio. The Norwegian ship Borgund, on passage to the Faroe Islands, arrived late on 10 June and picked up survivors, eventually delivering 37 alive to Thorshavn of whom two later died. Another Norwegian ship, Svalbard II, also making for the Faeroes, picked up five survivors but was sighted by a German aircraft and forced to return to Norway, where the four still alive became prisoners of war for the next five years. It is also believed that one more survivor from Glorious was rescued by a German seaplane.[46] Therefore, the total of survivors was 40, including one each from Acasta and Ardent.[47] The total killed or missing was 1,207 from Glorious, 160 from Acasta and 152 from Ardent, a total of 1,519.[48]

Commonwealth War Graves gravestone of D. C. Morton in Tromsø
The gravestone in Tromsø of Leading Airman Donald Conrad Morton, who died in the sinking of Glorious[49]

The sinkings and the failure to mount an effective rescue were embarrassing for the Royal Navy. All ships encountering enemies had been ordered to broadcast a sighting report, and the lack of such a report from Glorious was questioned in the House of Commons.[50] It emerged that the heavy cruiser Devonshire had passed within 30–50 miles (48–80 km) of the battle, flying the flag of Vice-Admiral John Cunningham, who was carrying out orders to evacuate the Norwegian Royal Family to the UK and maintain radio silence. Some survivors from Glorious and Devonshire testified that a sighting report had been correctly sent, and received by Devonshire, but that it had been suppressed by Cunningham, who departed at high speed in accordance with his orders.[51] It was also alleged that there was confusion over the use of wireless telegraphy frequencies on board Glorious which could have contributed to the failure of any other ship or shore-station to receive a sighting report. The absence of normal airborne patrols over Glorious and its destroyers, in conditions of maximum visibility, were named as contributors to the sinkings.[52]

The circumstances of the sinking were the subject of a debate in the House of Commons on 28 January 1999.[53]


For many years the only memorial to the seamen lost in the three ships was a stained-glass window in the church of St Peter Martindale in Cumbria, on the east side of Ullswater. On 8 June 2010, 70 years after the loss of Glorious, Acasta and Ardent, a memorial plaque inscribed in English and Norwegian was unveiled near the Trondenes Historical Centre in Harstad, Norway, the two destroyers' last port of call.[54]

A model of HMS Glorious by model maker Norman A. Ough built for the Royal United Services Museum is now on display in the Fleet Air Arm Museum at RNAS Yeovilton.[55]


  1. ^ "Cwt" is the abbreviation for hundredweight, 30 cwt referring to the weight of the gun.
  2. ^ The times used in this section are in UTC, which is one hour behind CET, which is often used in German works.
  3. ^ All times used in this section are Greenwich Mean Time.


  1. ^ Burt 1986, p. 303
  2. ^ Roberts, pp. 50–51
  3. ^ Roberts, pp. 64–65
  4. ^ Roberts, pp. 71, 76, 79
  5. ^ a b c Burt 1986, p. 306
  6. ^ Burt 1986, p. 294
  7. ^ Roberts, p. 63
  8. ^ Burt 1986, p. 307
  9. ^ Burt 1986, pp. 309, 313
  10. ^ Roberts, p. 54
  11. ^ Parkes, p. 621
  12. ^ McBride, p. 109
  13. ^ a b Burt 1986, p. 314
  14. ^ Newbolt, pp. 150–51
  15. ^ Newbolt, pp. 156–57
  16. ^ Newbolt, pp. 164–65
  17. ^ McBride, pp. 110–12
  18. ^ McBride, p. 115
  19. ^ Campbell 1978, p. 66
  20. ^ Campbell 1978, p. 67
  21. ^ Admiralty (1918), ADM156/90: Board of Enquiry into sinking of HMS Campania, HMSO
  22. ^ Burt 1993, p. 315
  23. ^ Burt 1993, pp. 273, 284–85
  24. ^ Raven and Roberts, p. 321
  25. ^ Brown, p. 2
  26. ^ Friedman, pp. 103, 105–06
  27. ^ Burt 1993, pp. 274–78
  28. ^ Burt 1993, pp. 165, 278, 281
  29. ^ Hayward 1998, p. 47
  30. ^ Treasure Jones, pp. 57–62
  31. ^ Burt 1993, pp. 281, 285
  32. ^ Sturtivant, pp. 167, 169
  33. ^ Sturtivant, pp. 206, 208–09, 256–57
  34. ^ Sturtivant, pp. 266, 269–70
  35. ^ a b Burt 1993, p. 285
  36. ^ Haarr, pp. 141, 143–54
  37. ^ Haarr, pp. 261–62
  38. ^ Haarr, pp. 308–10
  39. ^ a b Howland, p. 61
  40. ^ Haar, p. 331
  41. ^ a b c d Howland, p. 52
  42. ^ Haar, p. 336
  43. ^ Howland, p. 51
  44. ^ Rohwer, p. 26
  45. ^ 73.Jump up ↑ Stuart Robertson, Stephen Dent: The War at Sea in Photographs. s. 23.
  46. ^ "The Loss of HMS Glorious". 8 June 1940. Archived from the original on 24 October 2012. Retrieved 16 July 2012.
  47. ^ Winton, pp. 191–95
  48. ^ Winton, p. 200
  49. ^ "Casualty details: Morton, Donald Conrad". Commonwealth War Graves Commission. Retrieved 20 September 2013.
  50. ^ Winton, p. 209
  51. ^ Haarr, p. 347
  52. ^ "Analysis by Howland". Archived from the original on 22 May 2001. Retrieved 16 July 2012.
  53. ^ HMS Glorious. House of Commons Debate 28 January 1999 vol 324 cc564-76. Retrieved 5 February 2017
  54. ^ Harald Isachsen (2011), Harstad 1940–1945, Historier og fortellinger fra krigsåra, ISBN 978-82-998024-3-7, (in Norwegian)
  55. ^ "Norman Ough's HMS Glorious".


  • Bowdler, John M. (2002). "Re: HMS Glorious Collision, 1931". Warship International. XXXIX (4): 318–319. ISSN 0043-0374.
  • Brown, David (1977). Aircraft Carriers. New York: Arco Publishing Company. ISBN 0-668-04164-1.
  • Burt, R. A. (1993). British Battleships, 1919–1939. London: Arms and Armour Press. ISBN 1-85409-068-2.
  • Burt, R. A. (1986). British Battleships of World War One. Annapolis, Maryland: Naval Institute Press. ISBN 0-87021-863-8.
  • Campbell, John (1985). Naval Weapons of World War II. Annapolis, MD: Naval Institute Press. ISBN 0-87021-459-4.
  • Campbell, N. J. M. (1978). Battle Cruisers: The Design and Development of British and German Battlecruisers of the First World War Era. Warship Special. 1. Greenwich: Conway Maritime Press. ISBN 0-85177-130-0.
  • Friedman, Norman (1988). British Carrier Aviation: The Evolution of the Ships and Their Aircraft. Annapolis, Maryland: Naval Institute Press. ISBN 0-87021-054-8.
  • Haarr, Geirr H. (2010). The Battle for Norway: April–June 1940. Annapolis, Maryland: Naval Institute Press. ISBN 978-1-59114-051-1.
  • Hayward, Roger (1998). The Fleet Air Arm in Camera. Stroud, UK: Sutton Publishing. ISBN 0-7509-1979-5.
  • Howland, Vernon W. (1994). "The Loss of HMS Glorious: An Analysis of the Action". Warship International. Toledo, Ohio: International Naval Research Organization. XXXI (1): 47–62. ISSN 0043-0374. Archived from the original on 22 May 2001. Retrieved 9 June 2010.
  • McBride, Keith (1990). "The Weird Sisters". In Gardiner, Robert (ed.). Warship. 1990. Annapolis, Maryland: Naval Institute Press. pp. 93–101. ISBN 1-55750-903-4.
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External links

701 Naval Air Squadron

701 Naval Air Squadron was a Royal Navy Fleet Air Arm squadron, formed on 24 May 1939, that saw service during the Second World War.

Formed on 15 July 1936 as No. 701 (Catapult) Flight FAA at RAF Kalafrana, Malta by re-designating No. 444 (Fleet Reconnaissance) Flight FAA; 701 Squadron saw action in the Norwegian campaign in mid-1941, and in May six Supermarine Walrus aircraft of the squadron were flown off HMS Glorious to support operations off Harstad. In June 1940 the squadron briefly appeared on HMS Ark Royal, and the squadron was at Reykjavík in October 1940, when they were taken on board HMS Argus.By July 1943, the squadron was attached to No. 201 Group RAF for the invasion of Sicily (Operation Husky).

823 Naval Air Squadron

823 Naval Air Squadron was a Fleet Air Arm aircraft squadron before and during World War II.

825 Naval Air Squadron

825 Naval Air Squadron is a Royal Navy Fleet Air Arm Naval Air Squadron which was re-commissioned on 10 October 2014 and currently flies the AgustaWestland Wildcat HMA.2.It was a carrier-based squadron that was formed on 8 October 1934 from the aircraft and personnel of 824 Naval Air Squadron. It operated in most of the theatres of the Second World War, carrying out a number of attacks on prominent German warships, including the battleship Bismarck in the Atlantic and the pocket battleships Scharnhorst and Gneisenau and heavy cruiser Prinz Eugen during their Channel Dash. The squadron also saw action in later conflicts, including the Korean War and the Falklands War.

Baltic Project

The Baltic Project was a plan promoted by the Admiral Lord Fisher to procure a speedy victory during the First World War over Germany. It involved landing a substantial force, either British or Russian soldiers, on the flat beaches of Pomerania on the North German coast, less than 100 miles from Berlin.

To support this, a large specialist fleet would be required. Submarines and extensive mining would, it was proposed, keep the invasion force safe from the Imperial German Navy. More than 600 special vessels would be required, including landing craft, minesweepers, destroyers, light cruisers, monitors, and some heavy shallow draft support ships. The latter were built in the form of the three Courageous-class battlecruisers: HMS Glorious, HMS Furious, and HMS Courageous.The plan was never placed into action.

Bruce Fraser, 1st Baron Fraser of North Cape

Admiral of the Fleet Bruce Austin Fraser, 1st Baron Fraser of North Cape, (5 February 1888 – 12 February 1981) was a senior Royal Navy officer. He served in the First World War, saw action during the Gallipoli Campaign and took part in the internment of the German High Seas Fleet at the end of the war. He also served in the Second World War initially as Third Sea Lord and Controller of the Navy and then as second-in-command and afterwards as commander of the Home Fleet, leading the force that destroyed the German battleship Scharnhorst. He went on to be First Sea Lord and Chief of the Naval Staff in which role he assisted in establishing NATO and agreed to the principle that the Supreme Allied Commander Atlantic should be an American admiral, in the face of fierce British opposition.

Charles Forbes (Royal Navy officer)

Admiral of the Fleet Sir Charles Morton Forbes, (22 November 1880 – 28 August 1960) was a Royal Navy officer. He served in the First World War, seeing action in the Dardanelles Campaign and at the Battle of Jutland and, as captain of a cruiser, was present at the surrender of the German fleet. During the Second World War, he served as Commander-in-Chief, Home Fleet: his fleet suffered heavy losses including the aircraft carrier HMS Glorious and nine destroyers during the Norwegian Campaign in Spring 1940. He went on to be Commander-in-Chief, Plymouth in May 1941 and in that capacity he organised the defence of Plymouth from air attack, prosecuted attacks on enemy shipping using the harbour at Brest as well as other ports along the French coast, and also initiated the St Nazaire Raid in March 1942 before retiring in August 1943.

Eric Ravilious

Eric William Ravilious (22 July 1903 – 2 September 1942) was a British painter, designer, book illustrator and wood-engraver. He grew up in East Sussex, and is particularly known for his watercolours of the South Downs and other English landscapes, which examine English landscape and vernacular art with an off-kilter, modernist sensibility and clarity. He served as a war artist, and died when the aircraft he was in was lost off Iceland.

German battleship Gneisenau

Gneisenau was a German capital ship, alternatively described as a battleship and battlecruiser, of Nazi Germany's Kriegsmarine. She was the second vessel of her class, which included one other ship, Scharnhorst. The ship was built at the Deutsche Werke dockyard in Kiel; she was laid down on 6 May 1935 and launched on 8 December 1936. Completed in May 1938, the ship was armed with a main battery of nine 28 cm (11 in) C/34 guns in three triple turrets, though there were plans to replace these weapons with six 38 cm (15 in) SK C/34 guns in twin turrets.

Gneisenau and Scharnhorst operated together for much of the early portion of World War II, including sorties into the Atlantic to raid British merchant shipping. During their first operation, the two ships sank the British auxiliary cruiser HMS Rawalpindi in a short battle. Gneisenau and Scharnhorst participated in Operation Weserübung, the German invasion of Norway. During operations off Norway, the two ships engaged the battlecruiser HMS Renown and sank the aircraft carrier HMS Glorious. Gneisenau was damaged in the action with Renown and later torpedoed by a British submarine, HMS Clyde, off Norway. After a successful raid in the Atlantic in 1941, Gneisenau and her sister put in at Brest, France. The two battleships were the subject of repeated bombing raids by the RAF; Gneisenau was hit several times during the raids, though she was ultimately repaired.

In early 1942, the two ships made a daylight dash up the English Channel from occupied France to Germany. After reaching Kiel in early February, the ship went into drydock. On the night of 26 February, the British launched an air attack on the ship; one bomb penetrated her armored deck and exploded in the forward ammunition magazine, causing serious damage and a large number of casualties. The repairs necessitated by the damage were so time-consuming that it was determined to rebuild the ship to accommodate the 38 cm guns as originally intended. The 28 cm guns were removed and used as shore batteries. In 1943, Hitler ordered the cessation of conversion work, and on 27 March 1945, she was sunk as a blockship in Gotenhafen (Gdynia) in German-occupied Poland. She was eventually broken up for scrap in 1951.

German battleship Scharnhorst

Scharnhorst was a German capital ship, alternatively described as a battleship or battlecruiser, of Nazi Germany's Kriegsmarine. She was the lead ship of her class, which included one other ship, Gneisenau. The ship was built at the Kriegsmarinewerft dockyard in Wilhelmshaven; she was laid down on 15 June 1935 and launched a year and four months later on 3 October 1936. Completed in January 1939, the ship was armed with a main battery of nine 28 cm (11 in) C/34 guns in three triple turrets. Plans to replace these weapons with six 38 cm (15 in) SK C/34 guns in twin turrets were never carried out.

Scharnhorst and Gneisenau operated together for much of the early portion of World War II, including sorties into the Atlantic to raid British merchant shipping. During her first operation, Scharnhorst sank the auxiliary cruiser HMS Rawalpindi in a short engagement (November 1939). Scharnhorst and Gneisenau participated in Operation Weserübung (April–June 1940), the German invasion of Norway. During operations off Norway, the two ships engaged the battlecruiser HMS Renown and sank the aircraft carrier HMS Glorious as well as her escort destroyers Acasta and Ardent. In that engagement Scharnhorst achieved one of the longest-range naval gunfire hits in history.

In early 1942, after repeated British bombing raids, the two ships made a daylight dash up the English Channel from occupied France to Germany. In early 1943, Scharnhorst joined the Bismarck-class battleship Tirpitz in Norway to interdict Allied convoys to the Soviet Union. Scharnhorst and several destroyers sortied from Norway to attack a convoy, but British naval patrols intercepted the German force. During the Battle of the North Cape (26 December 1943), the Royal Navy battleship HMS Duke of York and her escorts sank Scharnhorst. Only 36 men were rescued, out of a crew of 1,968.

Guy D'Oyly-Hughes

Captain Guy D'Oyly-Hughes DSO & Bar, DSC (8 August 1891 – 8 June 1940) was an officer in the Royal Navy.

Guy Royle

Admiral Sir Guy Charles Cecil Royle (17 August 1885 – 4 January 1954) was a Royal Navy officer who went on to be Fifth Sea Lord and First Naval Member of the Royal Australian Navy.

HMS Glorieux

The French ship Glorieux was a second-rate 74-gun ship of the line in the French Navy. Built by Clairin Deslauriers at Rochefort and launched on 10 August 1756, she was rebuilt in 1777.

John Cameron (Royal Navy officer)

Admiral John Ewen Cameron CB MVO (15 June 1874 – 28 July 1939) was a Royal Navy officer who became Commander-in-Chief, Coast of Scotland.

List of Royal Air Force aircraft independent flights

This is a list of Royal Air Force independent Flights. An independent Flight is a military administrative structure which is used to command flying units where the number of aircraft is not large enough to warrant a fully fledged squadron.

Lumley Lyster

Vice Admiral Sir Arthur Lumley St George Lyster (27 April 1888 – 4 August 1957) was a Royal Navy officer during the Second World War.

No. 409 (Fleet Fighter) Flight RAF

No. 409 (Fleet Fighter) Flight was a naval aviation unit of the Royal Air Force operating during the early 1930s.

The unit was formed on 7 October 1932 at Gosport. The Flight was disbanded and merged with 408 (Fleet Fighter) Flight aboard HMS Glorious on 3 April 1933, to form 802 Naval Air Squadron.

No. 46 Squadron RAF

No. 46 Squadron of the Royal Flying Corps and the Royal Air Force, formed in 1916, was disbanded and re-formed three times before its last disbandment in 1975. It served in both World War I and World War II.

Operation Juno

Operation Juno was a German naval offensive late in the Norwegian Campaign. The German ships involved were the battleships Scharnhorst and Gneisenau, the heavy cruiser Admiral Hipper and the destroyers Z20 Karl Galster, Z10 Hans Lody, Z15 Erich Steinbrinck and Z7 Hermann Schoemann.

The mission was launched on 8 June 1940, as an attack on Harstad to relieve pressure on the German garrison at Narvik. After refuelling at Jan Mayen Island the mission became unnecessary as the Allies were evacuating from Norway. On his own initiative, however, the German commander, Admiral Marschall, decided to seek and destroy the Allied transports. The troop transport Orama, the tanker Oil Pioneer and the minesweepeing trawler HMT Juniper were sunk. Marschall ordered the Admiral Hipper and the destroyers to Trondheim, where they arrived in the morning of 9 June.

The next day, Admiral Hipper attempted to leave Trondheim, but was forestalled by the sighting of a British submarine.

Courageous class
Modified Courageous class
Other incidents
Other incidents
Other incidents


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