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HMS Fidelity in the Second World War 1939-1945 - The Wartime Memories Project -

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HMS Fidelity


HMS Fidelity was a Royal Navy Q ship, originally a French vessel named "Le Rhin", an armed merchant vessel. She was taken over by The Royal Navy in June 1940, and converted to a Special Service Vessel (SSV).

She was sunk on January 1st 1943 ,with the lost of 325 lives, whilst in Convoy ONS-154 disguised as a Merchant Navy ship in Atlantic off Azores.


If you can provide any additional information, please add it here.

Those known to have sailed in

HMS Fidelity

during the Second World War 1939-1945.

  • Barclay Madeline. First Offcr.
  • Bradley William. Marine. (d.30th Dec 1942)
  • Bramley Thomas Henry.
  • Evans Sydney. Able.Sea. (d.1st Jan 1943)
  • Goodall John Victor.
  • Hill Reginald Hemming.
  • Mahoney William George. AB. (d.1st Jan 1943)
  • Marsh Marcel. Act Sea (d.1st January 1943)
  • Mash Albert George.
  • McShannock Thomas. Cook (d.1st Jan 1940)
  • Metcalf Reginald Herbert.
  • Moss Arthur Thomas. Able.Sea. (d.30th Dec 1942)
  • Moule George Ernest.
  • Nigot Marc.
  • Patterson Henry Joseph. Lt. (d.30th Dec 1942)
  • Price Henry. Able Sea. (d.1st Jan 1943)
  • Seekins Albert Edmund. Yeo. Sig.
  • Turner Herbert E.. (d.1st January 1943)
  • Vieuxbled Jacques Robert. Cmdr.
  • Whitcher Charles A. L.. Petty Offcr.
  • Workman John Thomas. Able Seaman.

The names on this list have been submitted by relatives, friends, neighbours and others who wish to remember them, if you have any names to add or any recollections or photos of those listed, please Add a Name to this List

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Able Sea. Henry Price HMS Fidelity (d.1st Jan 1943)

My mother's first husband was on board HMS Fidelity when it was sunk on 31st December 1942. His name was Henry Price (Able Seaman). I would love to find a photograph of him and his shipmates, can anyone help?

Gill Gimbert

Lt. Henry Joseph Patterson (d.30th Dec 1942)

My father Henri Joseph Pruvost (aka Lt.Henry Patterson) served under Costa, skipper of the French naval vessel SS Rhin (later to be renamed HMS Fidelity a Q ship with the Royal Navy). I would be happy to hear from anyone who has a "French" connection with the crew of this ill fated boat. I am also trying to obtain information about the French origins (birth,residence, career, family) of my father via old Admirality records and from at present uncertain French sources. Can anyone help?

Geraint Dyfnallt

AB. William George Mahoney Gunner HMS Fidelity (d.1st Jan 1943)

William George Mahoney, was born in Bermondsey, London. He was the son of Michael and Amy Mahoney. He died at the age of 21 on HMS Fidelity. He had 3 brothers and 3 sisters.

Michael Ellis

Act Sea Marcel Marsh HMS Fidelity (d.1st January 1943)

Hi, my grandfather, Marcel Marsh, served and died on the HMS Fidelity. He was acting lead seaman. If anyone has any pictures or knows of any stories of my grandfather, I would love to hear from you. My mother never got to meet her father - the Fidelity was lost just before she was born - and her mother died shortly thereafter, from the doctor said... ' a broken heart'. My mum would love to see any photos or hear of any stories... Many thanks.

Joanna Le Var

Cmdr. Jacques Robert "James Stephens" Vieuxbled HMS Fidelity

My Father served on board HMS Fidelity in around 1941 based in and around Barry Docks in South Wales but was not on the ship when it was sunk.

He had to change his name on board as most of the French had to. The name he took was James Stephens which was the name on his Marriage Certificate to my Mother Lyne or Lena. We don`t know his real name but most people called him Jacques. They divorced sometime later still not knowing his real name. Some years back I traced a friend, Rene, who served with him but he did not know his French name either.

My father was a sick berth Petty Officer. I have tried the Naval authorities Merchant Navy & French Navy to no avail they all said without his real name it's virtually impossible. Someone told me about this site and here I am writing this in the hope someone may just know something. I do have some of his wedding photographs but that's about it. I recently tried the Museum in Caens but as of yet nothing. So will keep my fingers crossed.


I sent details to this website relating to my father about 10 years ago asking if anyone recognized him from the wedding photo as I did not know his real name at that time, nothing happened so after 50 years of looking for him I gave up!

Last year, 2012, unbeknown to me a brother was researching his father who was aboard HMS Fidelity came upon my email from ten years ago and suddenly thought who is this man looking for my father, he took the name from my email and googled it and lo and behold he found me in Sydney Australia and I now have a brother 2 sisters and a family of 80 all over France and of course found all the details of my father who after he disembarked Fidelty went into s.o.e then into underwater chariots then into commanding midget submarines till the end of the war, he then went back to France and married again and became harbour master in Madagascar where he was unfortunately killed saving a comrade in a shipping collision in 1959 he was awarded the congressional medal of honour for bravery.

His name was changed as were all aboard Fidelity to James Stephens and at the end of the war he reverted back to his real name which was Jacques Robert Vieuxbled. His son ( my new brother) joined the French navy as a 16year old and has just retired after 45 years rising to commander of destroyers and attack vessels also being awarded the congressional medal of honour for bravery in the gulf war.

So I would like to say a massive thank you to The Wartime Memories Project as without your site this would not have happened. Once again my congratulation for everything that you do.

Jaques Renay

Marine. William Bradley HMS Fidelity (d.30th Dec 1942)

Billy Bradley was my mother's brother. He was born in Newry co Down. He worked at Pinewood Studios in London before the war and was conscripted into the Marines. He was then sent on a special assignment on HMS Fidelity and went down with the ship. He was with a marine friend by the name of Saddler and his mother visited my grandparents after they went missing. Billy was 21 years old when he died. My grand mother never really believed he was dead because they never buried him.


Able.Sea. Arthur Thomas Moss HMS Fidelity (d.30th Dec 1942)

My great grandfather Arthur Moss was a caring loving man. His last letter stated to his wife that he had a very bad feeling about the fight he was going to fight and told her he doesn't think he will return. A heart breaking letter that told the utmost truth.

Chelsea Jones

Cook Thomas McShannock (d.1st Jan 1940)

Thomas McShannock was on board Fidelity when it turned back to pick up survivors of another sunken ship and was torpedoed at that 2nd time.

james mcshannock

Herbert E. "Ted" Turner HMS Fidelity (d.1st January 1943)

Does anyone remember my great uncle, Ted Turner, who died in action on HMS Fidelity in 1942?

Christine Williams

Marc Nigot HMS Fidelity

My father-in-law, Marc Nigot (now Marc Taylor), served aboard HMS Fidelity when she came to England at the start of the WW2.

John Bryan

Able.Sea. Sydney Evans HMS Fidelity (d.1st Jan 1943)

Sydney Evans was the son of Victor Reginald and Mary Evans of Edinburgh. He was the sixth of their nine children.


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