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HMCS Chilliwack

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HMCS Chilliwack 1942 MC-2190.jpg
HMCS Chilliwack, circa 1942.
History
Canada
NameChilliwack
NamesakeChilliwack, British Columbia
Ordered14 February 1940
BuilderBurrard Dry Dock, North Vancouver, British Columbia
Laid down3 July 1940
Launched14 September 1940
Commissioned8 April 1941
Out of servicePaid off 14 July 1945
IdentificationPennant number: K131
Honours and
awards
Atlantic 1941-45[1]
FateScrapped 1946.
General characteristics
Class and typeFlower-class corvette (original)[2]
Displacement925 long tons (940 t; 1,036 short tons)
Length205 ft (62.48 m)o/a
Beam33 ft (10.06 m)
Draught11.5 ft (3.51 m)
Propulsion
  • single shaft
  • 2 × fire tube Scotch boilers
  • 1 × 4-cycle triple-expansion reciprocating steam engine
  • 2,750 ihp (2,050 kW)
Speed16 knots (29.6 km/h)
Range3,500 nautical miles (6,482 km) at 12 knots (22.2 km/h)
Complement85
Sensors and
processing systems
  • 1 × SW1C or 2C radar
  • 1 × Type 123A or Type 127DV sonar
Armament

HMCS Chilliwack was a Flower-class corvette who served with the Royal Canadian Navy during the Second World War. She saw action primarily in the Battle of the Atlantic as a convoy escort. She was named for Chilliwack, British Columbia.

Discover more about HMCS Chilliwack related topics

Flower-class corvette

Flower-class corvette

The Flower-class corvette was a British class of 294 corvettes used during World War II by the Allied navies particularly as anti-submarine convoy escorts in the Battle of the Atlantic. Royal Navy ships of this class were named after flowers.

Corvette

Corvette

A corvette is a small warship. It is traditionally the smallest class of vessel considered to be a proper warship. The warship class above the corvette is that of the frigate, while the class below was historically that of the sloop-of-war.

Royal Canadian Navy

Royal Canadian Navy

The Royal Canadian Navy is the naval force of Canada. The RCN is one of three environmental commands within the Canadian Armed Forces. As of 2021, the RCN operates 12 frigates, four attack submarines, 12 coastal defence vessels, eight patrol class training vessels, two offshore patrol vessels, and several auxiliary vessels. The RCN consists of 8,570 Regular Force and 4,111 Primary Reserve sailors, supported by 3,800 civilians. Vice-Admiral Angus Topshee is the current commander of the Royal Canadian Navy and chief of the Naval Staff.

World War II

World War II

World War II or the Second World War, often abbreviated as WWII or WW2, was a global conflict that lasted from 1939 to 1945. The vast majority of the world's countries, including all of the great powers, fought as part of two opposing military alliances: the Allies and the Axis. Many participants threw their economic, industrial, and scientific capabilities behind this total war, blurring the distinction between civilian and military resources. Aircraft played a major role, enabling the strategic bombing of population centres and the only two nuclear weapons ever used in war.

Battle of the Atlantic

Battle of the Atlantic

The Battle of the Atlantic, the longest continuous military campaign in World War II, ran from 1939 to the defeat of Nazi Germany in 1945, covering a major part of the naval history of World War II. At its core was the Allied naval blockade of Germany, announced the day after the declaration of war, and Germany's subsequent counter-blockade. The campaign peaked from mid-1940 through to the end of 1943.

Chilliwack

Chilliwack

Chilliwack (Halkomelem: Ts'elxwéyeqw) is a city in the province of British Columbia, Canada. Chilliwack is surrounded by mountains and home to recreational areas such as Cultus Lake and Chilliwack Lake Provincial Parks. There are numerous outdoor activities in the area in which to participate, including hiking, rock climbing, mountain biking horseback riding, whitewater kayaking, camping, fishing, golf and paragliding. Chilliwack is known for its annual corn harvest, and is home to the Province's second largest independent bookstore The Book Man. The Fraser Valley Regional District is headquartered in Chilliwack, which is the Fraser Valley's second largest city after Abbotsford.

Background

Flower-class corvettes like Chilliwack serving with the Royal Canadian Navy during the Second World War were different from earlier and more traditional sail-driven corvettes.[3][4][5] The "corvette" designation was created by the French as a class of small warships; the Royal Navy borrowed the term for a period but discontinued its use in 1877.[6] During the hurried preparations for war in the late 1930s, Winston Churchill reactivated the corvette class, needing a name for smaller ships used in an escort capacity, in this case based on a whaling ship design.[7] The generic name "flower" was used to designate the class of these ships, which – in the Royal Navy – were named after flowering plants.[8]

Corvettes commissioned by the Royal Canadian Navy during the Second World War were named after communities for the most part, to better represent the people who took part in building them. This idea was put forth by Admiral Percy W. Nelles. Sponsors were commonly associated with the community for which the ship was named. Royal Navy corvettes were designed as open sea escorts, while Canadian corvettes were developed for coastal auxiliary roles which was exemplified by their minesweeping gear. Eventually the Canadian corvettes would be modified to allow them to perform better on the open seas.[9]

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Flower-class corvette

Flower-class corvette

The Flower-class corvette was a British class of 294 corvettes used during World War II by the Allied navies particularly as anti-submarine convoy escorts in the Battle of the Atlantic. Royal Navy ships of this class were named after flowers.

Winston Churchill

Winston Churchill

Sir Winston Leonard Spencer Churchill was a British statesman, soldier, and writer who served as Prime Minister of the United Kingdom twice, from 1940 to 1945 during the Second World War, and again from 1951 to 1955. Apart from two years between 1922 and 1924, he was a Member of Parliament (MP) from 1900 to 1964 and represented a total of five constituencies. Ideologically an economic liberal and imperialist, he was for most of his career a member of the Conservative Party, which he led from 1940 to 1955. He was a member of the Liberal Party from 1904 to 1924.

Percy W. Nelles

Percy W. Nelles

Admiral Percy Walker Nelles, was a flag officer in the Royal Canadian Navy (RCN) and the Chief of the Naval Staff from 1 January 1934 to 15 January 1944. He oversaw the massive wartime expansion of the RCN and the transformation of Canada into a major player in the Battle of the Atlantic. During his tenure U-boats raided the Gulf of St. Lawrence, Canadian Northwest Atlantic command was created, and the RCN provided up to 40% of all escort forces in the North Atlantic. His handling of the RCN's war effort had its opponents however, and he was removed from his post as Chief of the Naval Staff in January 1944. He was sent to London as Overseas Naval Attaché, coordinating RCN operations for Operation Overlord. He retired in January 1945 as a full admiral.

Construction

Chilliwack was ordered on 14 February 1940 as part of the 1939-1940 Flower-class building program. At Burrard Dry Dock in North Vancouver, British Columbia she was laid down on 3 July 1940. Chilliwack was launched on 14 September 1940 and commissioned on 8 April 1941 at Vancouver.[10] She is named after the city of Chilliwack, British Columbia. In April 1943 until October 1943, Chilliwack was refitting at Dartmouth, where her fo'c'sle was extended.[11]

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Burrard Dry Dock

Burrard Dry Dock

Burrard Dry Dock Ltd. was a Canadian shipbuilding company headquartered in North Vancouver, British Columbia. Together with the neighbouring North Van Ship Repair yard and the Yarrows Ltd. yard in Esquimalt, which were eventually absorbed, Burrard built over 450 ships, including many warships built and refitted for the Royal Navy and Royal Canadian Navy in the First and Second World Wars.

North Vancouver (city)

North Vancouver (city)

The City of North Vancouver is a city on the north shore of Burrard Inlet, British Columbia, Canada. It is the smallest in area and the most urbanized of the North Shore municipalities. Although it has significant industry of its own – including shipping, chemical production, and film production – the city is considered to be a suburb of Vancouver. The city is served by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, British Columbia Ambulance Service, and the North Vancouver City Fire Department.

Vancouver

Vancouver

Vancouver is a major city in western Canada, located in the Lower Mainland region of British Columbia. As the most populous city in the province, the 2021 Canadian census recorded 662,248 people in the city, up from 631,486 in 2016. The Greater Vancouver area had a population of 2.6 million in 2021, making it the third-largest metropolitan area in Canada. Greater Vancouver, along with the Fraser Valley, comprises the Lower Mainland with a regional population of over 3 million. Vancouver has the highest population density in Canada, with over 5,700 people per square kilometre, and fourth highest in North America.

Dartmouth, Nova Scotia

Dartmouth, Nova Scotia

Dartmouth is an urban community and former city located in the Halifax Regional Municipality of Nova Scotia, Canada. Dartmouth is located on the eastern shore of Halifax Harbour. Dartmouth has been nicknamed the City of Lakes, after the large number of lakes located within its boundaries.

War service

Bell from HMCS Chilliwack at the Chilliwack Military Museum, 2019
Bell from HMCS Chilliwack at the Chilliwack Military Museum, 2019

After commissioning she was sent to Halifax, arriving on 19 June 1941. She was assigned to Newfoundland Command in July and spent the rest of the year escorting convoys between St. John's and Iceland. In February 1942 she began work as an ocean escort, a position she continued with few interruptions until November 1944.[11]

Chilliwack participated in the battle for convoy SC 67 before assignment to Mid-Ocean Escort Force (MOEF) group C1 in June 1942. With group C1, she shared credit for sinking U-356 during the battle for convoy ON 154, and participated in the battles for convoy SC 94 and convoy HX 222. Chilliwack then joined MOEF group A3 in the battle for convoy ON 166. In December 1943 after completing her refit and work up, Chilliwack joined escort group W-8 of Western Escort Force. In March 1944, she assisted in the sinking of U-744 along with several other escorts while escorting convoy HX 280.[11] Chilliwack escorted fourteen trans-Atlantic convoys without loss in 1944 and spent 1945 escorting North American coastal convoys with the Western Local Escort Force.[12]

In April 1945 she was reassigned to Halifax Force before being lent to escort group C-1 again for one round trip in May. Chilliwack was paid off on 14 July 1945 at Sorel, Quebec.[11] The ship was sold after the war and scrapped in 1946.[2]

Trans-Atlantic convoys escorted

Convoy Escort Group Dates Notes
HX 145 20–25 August 1941[13] 83 ships escorted without loss from Newfoundland to Iceland
ON 11 4–11 September 1941[14] 63 ships escorted without loss from Iceland to Newfoundland
SC 45 21–30 September 1941[15] 58 ships escorted without loss from Newfoundland to Iceland
ON 21 5–14 October 1941[14] 30 ships escorted without loss from Iceland to Newfoundland
SC 51 25 October-4 November 1941[15] 38 ships escorted without loss from Newfoundland to Iceland
ON 33 11–19 November 1941[14] 49 ships escorted without loss from Iceland to Newfoundland
SC 59 14–21 December 1941[15] 39 ships escorted without loss from Newfoundland to Iceland
ON 50 28 December 1941 – 3 January 1942[14] 35 ships escorted without loss from Iceland to Newfoundland
SC 67 30 January-11 February 1942[15] Newfoundland to Iceland; 1 ship torpedoed & sunk
ON 66 18–25 February 1942[14] 19 ships escorted without loss from Iceland to Newfoundland
HX 178 6–16 March 1942[13] 22 ships escorted without loss from Newfoundland to Iceland
ON 79 24 March-1 April 1942[14] 29 ships escorted without loss from Iceland to Newfoundland
HX 195 MOEF group C1 24 June-1 July 1942[13] 30 ships escorted without loss from Newfoundland to Iceland
ON 112 MOEF group C1 14–25 July 1942[14] 36 ships escorted without loss from Northern Ireland to Newfoundland
SC 94 MOEF group C1 2–8 August 1942[13] Newfoundland to Northern Ireland; 10 ships torpedoed & sunk
ON 123 MOEF group C1 22–31 August 1942[14] 39 ships escorted without loss from Northern Ireland to Newfoundland
SC 99 MOEF group C1 9–19 September 1942[15] 59 ships escorted without loss from Newfoundland to Northern Ireland
ON 133 MOEF group C1 26 September-5 Oct 1942[14] 35 ships escorted without loss from Northern Ireland to Newfoundland
HX 211 MOEF group C1 13–20 October 1942[13] 29 ships escorted without loss from Newfoundland to Northern Ireland
ON 143 MOEF group C1 2–11 November 1942[14] 26 ships escorted without loss from Northern Ireland to Newfoundland
SC 110 MOEF group C1 24 November-5 December 1942[15] 33 ships escorted without loss from Halifax to Newfoundland
ON 154 MOEF group C1 19–30 December 1942[14] Northern Ireland to Newfoundland; 14 ships torpedoed (13 sank)
HX 222 MOEF group C1 11–22 January 1943[13] Newfoundland to Northern Ireland; 1 ship torpedoed & sunk
ON 166 MOEF group A3 12–25 February 1943[14] Northern Ireland to Newfoundland; 12 ships torpedoed (11 sank)
HX 265 11–20 November 1943[13] 51 ships escorted without loss from Newfoundland to Northern Ireland
ONS 24 1–13 December 1943[14] 29 ships escorted without loss from Northern Ireland to Newfoundland
HX 271 20–29 December 1943[13] 53 ships escorted without loss from Newfoundland to Northern Ireland
ON 221 25 January-6 February 1944[14] 63 ships escorted without loss from Northern Ireland to Newfoundland
HX 280 2–5 March 1944[13] 63 ships escorted without loss from Newfoundland to Northern Ireland
ON 230 31 March-9 April 1944[14] 66 ships escorted without loss from Northern Ireland to Newfoundland
HX 287 12–17 April 1944[13] 71 ships escorted without loss from Newfoundland to Northern Ireland
ON 235 5–14 May 1944[14] 65 ships escorted without loss from Northern Ireland to Newfoundland
HX 292 19–22 May 1944[13] 128 ships escorted without loss from Newfoundland to Northern Ireland
ON 240 11–22 June 1944[14] 85 ships escorted without loss from Northern Ireland to Newfoundland
HX 297 30 June-10 July 1944[13] 116 ships escorted without loss from Newfoundland to Northern Ireland
ON 245 19–28 July 1944[14] 101 ships escorted without loss from Northern Ireland to Newfoundland
HX 302 8–16 August 1944[13] 96 ships escorted without loss from Newfoundland to Northern Ireland
ON 250 25 August-4 September 1944[14] 76 ships escorted without loss from Northern Ireland to Newfoundland

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Halifax, Nova Scotia

Halifax, Nova Scotia

Halifax is the capital and largest municipality of the Canadian province of Nova Scotia, and the largest municipality in Atlantic Canada. Halifax is one of Canada's fastest growing municipalities, and as of 2022, it is estimated that the CMA population of Halifax was 480,582,with 348,634 people in its urban area. The regional municipality consists of four former municipalities that were amalgamated in 1996: Halifax, Dartmouth, Bedford, and Halifax County.

Iceland

Iceland

Iceland is a Nordic island country in the North Atlantic Ocean and in the Arctic Ocean. Iceland is the most sparsely populated country in Europe. Iceland's capital and largest city is Reykjavík, which is home to over 65% of the population. Iceland is the biggest part of the Mid-Atlantic Ridge that rises above sea level, and its central volcanic plateau is erupting almost constantly. The interior consists of a plateau characterised by sand and lava fields, mountains, and glaciers, and many glacial rivers flow to the sea through the lowlands. Iceland is warmed by the Gulf Stream and has a temperate climate, despite a high latitude just outside the Arctic Circle. Its high latitude and marine influence keep summers chilly, and most of its islands have a polar climate.

Mid-Ocean Escort Force

Mid-Ocean Escort Force

Mid-Ocean Escort Force (MOEF) referred to the organisation of anti-submarine escorts for World War II trade convoys between Canada and Newfoundland, and the British Isles. The allocation of United States, British, and Canadian escorts to these convoys reflected preferences of the United States upon their declaration of war, and the organisation persisted through the winter of 1942–43 despite withdrawal of United States ships from the escort groups. By the summer of 1943, United States Atlantic escorts were focused on the faster CU convoys and the UG convoys between Chesapeake Bay and the Mediterranean Sea; and only British and Canadian escorts remained on the HX, SC and ON convoys.

German submarine U-356

German submarine U-356

German submarine U-356 was a Type VIIC U-boat of Nazi Germany's Kriegsmarine during World War II. The submarine was laid down in May 1940 at the Flensburger Schiffbau-Gesellschaft yard at Flensburg, launched on 16 September 1941, and commissioned on 20 December 1941.

Convoy ON 154

Convoy ON 154

Convoy ON 154 - also ON(S) 154 or ONS 154 - was a North Atlantic convoy of the ON series which ran during the battle of the Atlantic in World War II. It was the 154th of the numbered series of merchant ship convoys Outbound from the British Isles to North America. It came under attack in December 1942 and lost 13 of its 50 freighters. One of the attacking U-boats was destroyed.

Convoy SC 94

Convoy SC 94

Convoy SC 94 was the 94th of the numbered series of World War II Slow Convoys of merchant ships from Sydney, Cape Breton Island, Nova Scotia, to Liverpool. The ships departed Sydney on 31 July 1942 and were met by Mid-Ocean Escort Force Group C-1.

HX convoys

HX convoys

The HX convoys were a series of North Atlantic convoys which ran during the Battle of the Atlantic in the Second World War. They were east-bound convoys and originated in Halifax, Nova Scotia from where they sailed to ports in the United Kingdom. They absorbed the BHX convoys from Bermuda en route. Later, after the United States entered the war, HX convoys began at New York.

Convoy ON 166

Convoy ON 166

Convoy ON 166 was the 166th of the numbered ON series of merchant ship convoys Outbound from the British Isles to North America. Sixty-three ships departed Liverpool 11 February 1943 and were met the following day by Mid-Ocean Escort Force Group A-3 consisting of the Treasury-class cutters Campbell and Spencer and the Flower-class corvettes Dianthus, Chilliwack, Rosthern, Trillium and Dauphin.

German submarine U-744

German submarine U-744

German submarine U-744 was a type VIIC U-boat, launched on 11 March 1943, commanded by Oberleutnant zur See Heinz Blischke.

Newfoundland (island)

Newfoundland (island)

Newfoundland is a large island off the east coast of the North American mainland and the most populous part of the Canadian province of Newfoundland and Labrador. It has 29 percent of the province's land area. The island is separated from the Labrador Peninsula by the Strait of Belle Isle and from Cape Breton Island by the Cabot Strait. It blocks the mouth of the Saint Lawrence River, creating the Gulf of Saint Lawrence, the world's largest estuary. Newfoundland's nearest neighbour is the French overseas collectivity of Saint Pierre and Miquelon.

ON convoys

ON convoys

The ON convoys were a series of North Atlantic trade convoys running Outbound from the British Isles to North America during the Battle of the Atlantic.

SC convoys

SC convoys

The SC convoys were a series of North Atlantic convoys that ran during the battle of the Atlantic during World War II.

Source: "HMCS Chilliwack", Wikipedia, Wikimedia Foundation, (2023, January 25th), https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HMCS_Chilliwack.

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References
  1. ^ "Battle Honours". Britain's Navy. Retrieved 4 August 2013.
  2. ^ a b Lenton, H.T.; Colledge, J.J (1968). British and Dominion Warships of World War II. Doubleday & Company. pp. 201, 212.
  3. ^ Ossian, Robert. "Complete List of Sailing Vessels". The Pirate King. Retrieved 13 April 2011.
  4. ^ Fitzsimons, Bernard, ed. (1978). The Illustrated Encyclopedia of 20th Century Weapons & Warfare. Vol. 11. London: Phoebus. pp. 1137–1142.
  5. ^ Jane's Fighting Ships of World War II. New Jersey: Random House. 1996. p. 68. ISBN 0-517-67963-9.
  6. ^ Blake, Nicholas; Lawrence, Richard (2005). The Illustrated Companion to Nelson's Navy. Stackpole Books. pp. 39–63. ISBN 0-8117-3275-4.
  7. ^ Chesneau, Roger; Gardiner, Robert (June 1980). Conway's All the World's Fighting Ships 1922-1946. Naval Institute Press. p. 62. ISBN 0-87021-913-8.
  8. ^ Milner, Marc (1985). North Atlantic Run. Naval Institute Press. pp. 117–119, 142–145, 158, 175–176, 226, 235, 285–291. ISBN 0-87021-450-0.
  9. ^ Macpherson, Ken; Milner, Marc (1993). Corvettes of the Royal Canadian Navy 1939-1945. St. Catherines: Vanwell Publishing. p. 117. ISBN 1-55125-052-7.
  10. ^ "HMCS Chilliwack (K131)". Uboat.net. Retrieved 4 August 2013.
  11. ^ a b c d Macpherson, Ken; Burgess, John (1981). The ships of Canada's naval forces 1910-1981 : a complete pictorial history of Canadian warships. Toronto: Collins. p. 72. ISBN 0-00216-856-1.
  12. ^ "Convoy Web". Andrew Hague Convoy Database. Retrieved 27 June 2011.
  13. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m "HX convoys". Andrew Hague Convoy Database. Retrieved 19 June 2011.
  14. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s "ON convoys". Andrew Hague Convoy Database. Retrieved 19 June 2011.
  15. ^ a b c d e f "SC convoys". Andrew Hague Convoy Database. Retrieved 19 June 2011.

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