can any old World war 2 commandoe identify with this service record please

Discussion in 'The Corps' started by birgit, May 10, 2016.

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  1. Good evening, thanks for letting me join.

    I have no clue what to be doing here but thanks.

    I got a bit of a problem with my Uncles WW2 service record. There is nothing to it, no details no ships, no clues at all........... it is a mystery and he remains a mystery.

    1) Official service number JX381543* Born 20.05.1924,
    HMS Collingwood Naval Base as an Ordinary Seaman. This was 22 july 1942 until 25 Oct 1942 and was for 3 months.*

    Collingwood was opened as Training Establishment for Radar and Electrical ratings

    2)HMS Victory 27 Oct 1942-27 Feb 1943 and was for 4 months.*Photo dec42

    3)HMS Northney 28 Feb 1943 -13 Mar 1943 and was for 2 weeks.*

    NORTHNEY was a Landing Craft and Combined Ops Training Base on Hayling Island.

    4)HMS Dartmouth 14 Mar 1943 - 22 Apr 1943 and was for 5 weeks.

    DARTMOUTH was a Combined Forces base at Dartmouth.

    5)HMS Quebec 23 Apr 1943 - 2 May 1943 and was for 9 days.*

    QUEBEC was a Combined Ops Training Centre at Inverary.

    6)HMS Sea Serpent 3 May 1943- 2 July 1943 and was for 2 months.*

    7)HMS Copra 3 July 1943 - 12 July 1943 and was for 8 days.*

    COPRA was a Pay and Records Establishment at Largs

    8)HMS Sea Serpent 13 July 1943 - 16 July 1943 and was for 3 days.*

    9)HMS SalsetteBombay?17 July 1943 - 21 July 1943 and was for 4 days.*

    10)HMS Salsetteas an Able Seaman 22 July 1943 - 31 Mar 1944 and was for 8 months in India.*

    11)HMS Copra 01 April 1944 - 31 Dec 1944 and was for 9 months.*

    COPRA was a Pay and Records Establishment at Largs

    12)LCT 445 01 Jan - 10 Jan 1945 and was for 9 days.*

    13)HMS Copra 11 Jan 1945 - 18 Jan 1945 and was for 9 days.*

    COPRA was a Pay and Records Establishment at Largs

    14)HMS Dundonald 19 Jan 1945 - 17 Feb 1945 and was 1 months.*

    DUNDONALD at Auchen Gate was a Holding and training Base for Naval Beach Commandoes and also for Combined Ops personnel returning from the Middle East.

    15)HMS Copra 18 Feb 1945 - 11 Mar 1945 and was 3 weeks.*

    COPRA was a Pay and Records Establishment at Largs

    16)HMS Dundonald 12 Mar 1945 - 30 Jun 1945 31/2 months.*

    DUNDONALD at Auchen Gate was a Holding and training Base for Naval Beach Commandoes and also for Combined Ops personnel returning from the Middle East.

    17)HMS Copra 1 July 1945 - 28 Feb 1946 was 8 months.*

    COPRA was a Pay and Records Establishment at Largs

    18)HMS Victory 01 Mar 1946 12 Jun 1946 was 31/2 months.*

    His only LCT contact according to his record in the Navy is LCT 445 and thats for 9days.........!!!

    I got a million questions but no answers..... can i get an opinion on this record please, any guidance at all please. Many thanks.
  2. thanks
  3. USS LCT 445 (LCT 445)
    Landing craft tank of the LCT (Mk 5) class
    Navy The US Navy
    Type Landing craft tank
    Class LCT (Mk 5)
    Pennant LCT 445
    Built by New York Shipbuilding Corp. (Camden, New Jersey, U.S.A.)
    Laid down Sep 1942
    Launched Sep 1942
    End service
    Transferred to the RN upon completion in September 1942
  4. Billy Q, got any info on LCT 7029? I think she was a Mk 3 and built in Scotland. References to LCT's is pretty scant.
  5. Landing Craft Tank of the LCT (Mk 3) class
    Navy The Royal Navy
    Type Landing Craft Tank
    Class LCT (Mk 3)
    Pennant LCT 7029
    Built by Redpatch Brown & Co. Ltd. (Meadowside, Scotland, U.K.)
    Ordered 1943
    Laid down
    Commissioned 31 Oct 1944
    End service

    A request for information a few years ago:-
    LCT 445
    Ex-PO Motor Mechanic Trevor Taylor DSM of 24 Fyfield Ave Swindon SN2 5ED was seeking news of Wireman Spider Kelley and AB Johnny Williams of Mexbororough with whom he served in WW.
    Sadly, they will likely all be dead and we are left with the likes of MLP and Twiglet....Help!
  6. thanks for interest. Still no luck in finding out what LCT 445 did for 9 days in Jan 1945.

    Can i ask..... was a Combined ops sailor, 'assigned' to a Royal navy commando unit?

    Did the same Landing craft match the same Commando unit regularly?
    Many thanks
  7. ...Hi birgit,

    Sorry for the delay with my reply - I've been busy working across the pond.

    I've had a quick look but I can't find anything listed by the RN Archives regarding the activities of LCT 445 in January 1945, however, I did find it mentioned on the Wiki page regarding USS BLANCO COUNTY.

    There was much activity after D Day with Landing Craft Tanks. They were used to ferry equipment, vehicles, supplies and arms from UK ports to the ports of France that the allies had captured, going back and forth.

    Combined Ops, as I understand is: Combined operations by allied nations. In this instance, I'd venture to say that LCT445 was in combined ops with the likes of USS Blanco County in late 1944 and beyond.
    Your sailor was assigned to the LCT445, had he been attached to a Commando Unit it would have been recorded in his Service Record and in his Pay Roll. I will read through the list of training establishments that he attended in the list you have supplied, and will then see if I can help you further.


    Hope this helps.

    Last edited: May 17, 2016
  8. excellent, many thanks, hope you enjoyed the other side of the pond and you didnt swim back....... I check this clue out sweetpea....:)
  9. :( I've got jet lag..... what day is it, where am I? :confused:

    SP. :)
  10. SP

    Combined Ops as I know it is Air, Sea and Land forces working together. Amphibious ships are combined ops as the troops are transported by sea and landed by landing craft and air units. The WW2 badge is still used today
    combined ops.jpg
    In fact I saw 3 RAF personnel wearing it on their MTP today and Bulwark, Albion and Ocean have it on their funnels.
  11. janner

    janner War Hero Book Reviewer

    @sweetpea where did you go on the Isle of Wight?
  12. Sadly, I didn't see her on the Island, although she would be most welcome.

    And although from Dorset you can sometimes see the Isle of Wight ( when it's not raining in Dorset, that is ) it's a moat, not a pond.

    For the OP, it's quite possible that LCT445 was well acquainted with the Isle of Wight, the Solent and Spithead.
  13. Now i'm confused, again,:).........

    there seems to be LCT445(scottish) mark 1 then
    LCT445 mark 3 (scottish) and Oct 1944
    LCT445 mark 5 (American) (5 being for 5 Sherman tanks) lend lease to RN in 1943, in India then Med

    Is there a RN database of landing craft i can check? any ideas.

    Does LCT belong to a RN flotilla, to a LST like USS Blanco County or to a RNI Ship like HMS Royal Ulsterman,
  14. Thanks Wrightsparker 'it's quite possible that LCT445 was well acquainted with the Isle of Wight, the Solent and Spithead'.

    I take it LCT445 was a frequent user of the area, for troop training pre D-day and post d-day supply. Any LST associated? Any flotilla associated? Any base LST445 she worked out of Hayling? Dartmouth? Other......

    Was she with Royal NAvy, Royal Marines, US Navy? Other?
  15. Wrecker,
    I Knooooooow! (said in the voice of Sybil Fawlty of Fawlty Towers) :D

    The mans service record might indicate whether the sailor was attached to a Commando Unit, it is usually logged as 'attached to No4 Commando, then a date and place, ie, 9/18/42 Dieppe'.
    The training bases are the only reference to Combined Ops in this instance, he may well have been attached to No4 or No5 Commando etc, but as I say, one often finds the Unit number recorded within the service record. I have never seen a service record where the serviceman is listed as serving in Combined Ops, despite the badge, the service record states the service, ie, RN, RM, Army or RAF in which the man served. I refer to what is written on paper in the service documents.

    From the information that I found yesterday, and although half a sleep, I thought perhaps there might be a connection with the ship USS BLANCO COUNTY, since she was in the USA with a craft known as LCT445 ( the said craft was later transferred to the RN). The USS BLANCO COUNTY took part in D DAY and afterwards, for a period of ten months, took part in ferrying equipment etc from the UK to French ports.... as did many other craft, including LCT's. Hence my use/terminology of Combined Ops. MY MISTAKE, made a note to ones self, do not do it again. :p
    Combined Operations are operations conducted by forces of two or more allied nations acting together for the accomplishment of a common strategy.

    @janner & @Wightsparker, I wish I had only been as far as the IofW, but sadly not. Had I been to the IofW, I'd have spent my whole time in the Bembridge Maritime Museum & shipwreck Centre, 'tis a delightful place, and so interesting. One of my favourite places to visit. :)

    birgit, I think you will obtain further assistance on the WW2Talk Forum - a very nice group of researchers and authors who are always willing to help.

    EDITED to add: I came across this reference to HMS COPRA:
    'HMS Copra' is sometimes noted on war graves in Normandy. Tony Chapman, Archivist and Historian of the LST and Landing Craft Association explains;

    HMS Copra, was never anything other than a shore base. I have the names of many recorded lost from HMS Copra because, sadly, the names of the craft they were serving with at the time of their deaths, was not recorded. The use of HMS Copra on grave stones, in pay books and other service records confirms that the men concerned were in the Royal Navy and assigned to Combined Operations..... and that they served on and/or were lost from an unknown landing craft. I have the names of all the craft and ships assigned on D-Day and nowhere is HMS Copra recorded as a vessel.


    SP. :)
    Last edited: May 18, 2016
  16. Thats me told :(
    • Funny Funny x 3
  17. Aww, poor Wrecker. [​IMG]

    SP. :)
  18. Excellent thanks for all your time and your knowledge, a lot of info. has been confirmed to me. Just the detail that is missing...... always the detail lol........ first in last out...........

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