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

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HMS Nelson

   HMS Nelson was a Royal Navy battleship, built by Vickers-Armstrong at the Walkers Yard, Newcastle-upon-Tyne. she was launched in 1925 and played an active part in several battles of the Second World War, including, the Malta convoys 1941-2, North Africa 1942-3, Sicily 1943, Salerno 1943, Mediterranean 1943, Normandy 1944 as well as undertaking convoy duty.


13th Jul 1941 Convoy

27th Jul 1941 Convoy

4th Aug 1941 Convoy arrives

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

Those known to have sailed in

HMS Nelson

during the Second World War 1939-1945.

  • Alsop Christopher T. . A.B. (d.12th Aug 1942)
  • Anglis Anthony Blackstone. Able Sea.
  • Aris John G. . Ord.Tel. (d.12th Aug 1942)
  • Armstrong Kenneth . Ord.Sea. (d.12th Aug 1942)
  • Atkins Fred. Capt.
  • Barclay Dominic. A.B.
  • Bennett Denis.
  • Bergen J. .
  • Betts Charles George . A/Ldg.Tel. (d.12th Aug 1942)
  • Booth Joseph Cockburn.
  • Bott . (d.12th Aug 1942)
  • Box John T. . A.B. (d.12th Aug 1942)
  • Boyce Gordon C. . Ord.Tel. (d.12th Aug 1942)
  • Brady Thomas Joseph.
  • Brawn Cecil G. . P.O. (d.12th Aug 1942)
  • Bray Eric N. . A.B. (d.12th Aug 1942)
  • Bull Johnny . RDF Op.
  • Burke Joseph.
  • Burns Edgar . A.B. (d.12th Aug 1942)
  • Cain Austin.
  • Calver George Arthur. Sto.
  • Carmichael Alexander. Petty Officer
  • Carrington J. B.. Midshipman (d.26th Feb 1942)
  • Castle William E. . A.B. (d.12th Aug 1942)
  • Clapp Ronald. Petty Officer
  • Cleary T. .
  • Coe G. F.. A.B. (d.15th Aug 1944)
  • Coker Ted.
  • Coleman Herbert E . A.B. (d.12th Aug 1942)
  • Conn Frederick W.J. . Musician (d.12th Aug 1942)
  • Coote Eric H. . A.B. (d.12th Aug 1942)
  • Copeman Eric James Alfred.
  • Cox David. Acting Ldg Sea
  • Coxton Kenneth N. . Tel. (d.12th Aug 1942)
  • Culver Eric R. . A.B. (d.12th Aug 1942)
  • Cushing John Harry. Tel.
  • Dingley Bernard Francis Theodore. Able Sea.
  • Dowling Ralph . Sgt.
  • Drury George Haydn. Leading Stoker
  • Drury George Hadyn.
  • Ebbage Herbert S. . Ldg.Sea. (d.12th Aug 1942)
  • Edwards Fred. PO.
  • Ernest Irish James. Marine
  • Ewing Andy . RDF Op.
  • Fernie John Lawson. Stkr1.
  • Fleming Robert Blyth.
  • Fox Ernest . A.B. (d.12th Aug 1942)
  • Frost Kenneth Harry George.
  • George Sidney Horace.
  • Gifford .
  • Gill J. Arthur. Ldg.Stoker
  • Gooding James Edward.
  • Green Benjamin. Ldg.Tel.
  • Green J. F. . E.A. (d.6th Sep 1942)
  • Grose Henry . Ord.Sea. (R.D.F.) (d.12th Aug 1942)
  • Gross Jock . RDF Op.
  • Guselli Thomas Edward. Able.Sea.
  • Harris Ron .
  • Harris Ronald Walter. PMR Mid.
  • Hart Reginald T. . A.B. (d.12th Aug 1942)
  • Healey Edward Sydney.
  • Herbert John Arthur. Able Sea.
  • Hoare James . A.B. (d.12th Aug 1942)
  • Hopkinson Albert Harold. AB 2
  • Howman Robert .
  • Hulstone Raymond.
  • Hunt John.
  • Hunter Neil.
  • Ingldby Patrick R. . Midshipman (d.12th Aug 1942)
  • Irvine. N. C. . Lieut (d.26th May 1944 )
  • Irving Norman . A.B. (d.12th Aug 1942)
  • Isaacs Douglas J. . A.B. (d.12th Aug 1942)
  • James Gordon P. . Sto. (d.12th Aug 1942)
  • Janes William. Ord Sea. (d.1st Feb 1941)
  • Janes William. OrdSea. (d.1st Feb 1941)
  • Jeffery Robert William Albert .
  • Jeffery Robert William Albert.
  • Johnson Charles Thomas. CPO.
  • Johnson H. G.. Naval Airman (d.29th Sep 1941)
  • Johnson Robert Korah. Able Sea.
  • Johnstone Cecil F. . Ord.Sea. (d.12th Aug 1942)
  • Jones Stanley Alfred.
  • Kerr Claude B.. Paymaster Midshipman (d.12th Aug 1942)
  • King .
  • Kirkbride James Vincent.
  • Lascelles Kenneth.
  • Lebbing Clifford H. . A.B. (d.12th Aug 1942)
  • Litty Peter Alan. Able Sea.
  • Lovejoy Ronald Thomas George. Stkr. (d.13th Mar 1945)
  • Luther Robert Fyfe.
  • Males Philip Francis. PO.
  • Manser Edward.
  • Martindale John T. . Ord. Sea. (d.12th Aug 1942)
  • Martyr. Alfred A . Warrant Electrician (d.12th Aug 1942)
  • McGee .
  • McInnes James F. . Ord.Sea. (d.12th Aug 1942)
  • Mcpherson John . RDF Op.
  • Mcquaker Charles David.
  • McVittie Francis Gordon. A B
  • Miles Kenneth John. Able Sea.
  • Milne .
  • Moore Ronald . Gunner.
  • Morey William C. . Musician (d.12th Aug 1942)
  • Morgan F. S. . E.R.A.1 (d.2nd April 1945)
  • Morgan Thomas William. AB.
  • Morrison John.
  • Moss Joseph. Pte.
  • Muray John Thomas. Gnr.
  • Murray John Thomas. TA Leading Seaman
  • Murray Thomas John.
  • Newby Joe.
  • Osgood Charles Alfred.
  • Page Albert R. . S.A. (d.12th Aug 1942)
  • Palmer Glynn . RDF Op.
  • Pegrum Ernest Leonard. Tel.
  • Pemberton A E. PO
  • Perry Alfred J. . P.O. (d.12th Aug 1942)
  • Perry Frederick.
  • Phillibrown Peter Wilfred.
  • Phillips Arthur V. . Musician (d.12th Aug 1942)
  • Phillips Jack A. . Musician (d.12th Aug 1942)
  • Pickford John Arthur. AB
  • Powell H .
  • Powell Richard . Band Corporal (d.12th Aug 1942)
  • Rab Cornelis. Able Sea.
  • Ransome . Commander (d.12th Aug 1942)
  • Rawlins Ronald John. Marn.
  • Ray William D. G. . Musician (d.12th Aug 1942)
  • Reeves Arthur W. . A.B. (d.12th Aug 1942)
  • Ridout Albert E. . Bandmaster (d.12th Aug 1942)
  • Roberts Henry G. . A.B. (d.12th Aug 1942)
  • Robinson George W. A. . Ldg.Tel. (d.12th Aug 1942 )
  • Rogers A. P.. A.B. (d.11th Mar 1942)
  • Rope Aaron . Musician (d.12th Aug 1942 )
  • Sanson Joseph Charles.
  • Seabrook George Albert. Op Mech 4
  • Shepherd G..
  • Skoyles Henty W. . P.O. (d.12th Aug 1942)
  • Smart E. . L/Wtr.
  • Smith Arthur S. . Sto. (d.12th August 1942)
  • Smith Edward Charles. PO
  • Smith J.. A.B.
  • Strike. Arthur Sidney James . Able Seaman Gunner QR3.
  • Tanner James. Able Sea.
  • Taylor Hamish Hislop. Stk.
  • Taylor R. S.. A.B. (d.26th Feb 1942)
  • Terry James Mercer. Bandsman
  • Thompson Sam . Gunner
  • Thorpe Frank.
  • Tuffill John D . Midshipman. (d.12th Aug 1942)
  • Tunnell Sydney Bernard. L/Stkr.
  • Turner Ronald Henry.
  • Tutill William Donald.
  • Underwood Jimmy . Cook.
  • Walker Herbert . A.B. (d.12th Aug 1942)
  • Waller H A . (d.12th Aug 1942)
  • Walters Joseph. CPO.
  • Watt Robert. PO.
  • Weare Louis George. P.O.
  • Weare Louis George. PO.
  • White Norman .
  • Whitecross Andrew. CPO.ERA.
  • Wicks Thomas A. . A.B. (d.12th Aug 1942)
  • Wiley Edmond . A/Ldg Sea. (d.12th Aug 1942)
  • Wilkinson Cyril . Ord.Sea.(R.D.F.) (d.12th Aug 1942)
  • Wilson John M. . A.B. (d.12th Aug 1942)
  • Wood .
  • Young J. . Steward (d.29th Jul 1945)

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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Robert Blyth Fleming HMS Nelson

My dad served on the Nelson during the second world war and was a boy sailor. He was in Malta for two years. Does anybody remember him at all. He is 82 this year

Yvonne Brown

Eric James Alfred Copeman HMS Nelson

My dad, Eric James Alfred Copeman, served on HMS Nelson during the 2nd World War. He was leading torpedoman on the ship. If anybody has any knowledge, or remembers serving with him we would be grateful for contact, as he passed away 12 years ago aged 73.

Terry Copeman

Joe Newby HMS Nelson

My father, Joe Newby, served on HMS Nelson at some stage during WW2. I have one photo, and medals from WW2 include Italy Star, Atlantic Star, Africa star. My son is doing a project at school about WW2 and would like to know about his grandfather. Joe died 20 years ago, so any information would be very helpful.

Andrew John Newby

John "Storm" Hunt HMS Nelson

My grandfather, John "Storm" Hunt served on the Nelson during the war. I believe he worked in radar. Recently he has had a stroke which has left him suffering from Alzheimer's. Does anyone remember him?

On another note, why was the deck of the ship painted yellow? I am building a model of this great ship, and wondered why that was.

Andrew Hunt

Sidney Horace George HMS Nelson

My father, Sidney Horace George, now deceased, served on the HMS Nelson. Does anyone have any information about him please?

Amanda George

PO A E Pemberton HMS Nelson

After the recent death of my mother-in-law, I found a silver cigarette case,which had the following inscription: A.E.Pemberton P.O. P/J 110609 "H.M.S. Nelson" 1939-1944. This seemed to be a strange object to find, because no-one in the family has any naval connections.If anyone could shed any light on the case, or a member of the family knows anything I would be most grateful. The case has what looks like a naval badge on the front. There is also a photograph of two men in navy white uniforms inside. My mother-in-law was from Leicester

John Allsopp

Leading Stoker George Haydn Drury HMS Nelson

My father, PKX 91482 Leading Stoker George Haydn Drury, served on the Nelson from 3/9/1938 to 3/1/1941. The second photo is again my father and one of his shipmates (on left). I do not his name.

This is all I know of his service on board the Nelson, however I am trying to find out more in order to catalogue his career in the Royal Navy which spanned from 1937 to 1949.

I would appreciate any information no matter how small.

George Drury

Petty Officer Ronald Clapp HMS Nelson

Petty Officer Ronald Clapp, was a gunner on HMS Nelson.

Frances Bennett

George Hadyn Drury HMS Nelson

My father, PKX 91482 Leading stoker George Haydn Drury, served on the Nelson from 3/9/1938 to 3/1/1941. The second photo is my father and one of his shipmates (on the left). I do not his name.

This is all I know of his service on board the Nelson, however I am trying to find out more in order to catalogue his career in the Royal Navy which spanned from 1937 to 1949.

I would appreciate any information no matter how small.

George Drury

Peter Wilfred " " Phillibrown HMS Howe

My granddad, Peter Wilfred Phillibrown served on HMS Howe & HMS Nelson, I'm not sure which way around, sadly though he's no longer with us as I would of loved to of met him. I'm trying to get as much information about him as I can, if anyone has any information or photos I would very grateful. As my Dad & I are trying to put the puzzle together.


Petty Officer Alexander "Nimble" Carmichael HMS Nelson

I am writing a biography of my father's wartime experiences as he had an interesting war. He was at Narvik, on the Malta Convoy, was seconded to HMS Tallyho and was on the submarine when it was reported as sunk with all hands lost. He was a naval commando and witnessed the surrender of the Japanese on HMS Nelson. He also played football for the Navy and after the war played Portugal (Navy won) and Brazil(Navy lost). If anyone remembers my father, Alex Carmichael, please contact me.

Vivien Carmichael

Able Sea. James Tanner HMS Beryl

Jimmy Tanner was my Uncle, one vessel he served in was HMS Beryl (formerly the Lady Adelaide) an armed trawler of 615 tons displacement launched in 1935 and used by the British Navy for anti-submarine training. HMS Beryl had a top speed of 12 knots and was armed with one 4-inch gun and depth charges.

During WW2 one of Beryl's duties was to escort the stricken tanker SS Ohio of Convoy Pedestal into Grand Harbour Malta whilst under attack from German bombers and threats from a submarine and E boats. Captain of the Beryl, Lt Cdr Sellwood was awarded the Distinguished Service Cross and several members of the crew were also decorated. The ship was adopted by the Lincolnshire village of Bourne of which Captn Sellwood was a native and is still remembered by them. My brother always described our uncle as the "rear gunner on a trawler"! After the war the Beryl returned to Fleetwood for use as a trawler and re-assumed her original name, only being scrapped in the 1990's so far as I am aware.

One other incident Jimmy was a spectator to was the sinking of the Hood. he was on a ship nearby and those on deck claimed that they saw an aircraft drop a bomb down the funnel of Hood. That was proved not to be the case and it can only be assumed that the aircraft seen was a German spotter aircraft launched by the Bismark.

Keith Tanner

Op Mech 4 George Albert Seabrook HMS Nelson

My grandfather served on the Glendower and the Victory but spent two years as part of the crew of HMS Nelson from 16th June 1943 until 28th April 1945. He served back on the Victory until 22nd December when he finished his service. I used to love listening to his navy stories as a kid most relating to his Nelson days which were treasured memories of people he was with during those frightening times. He died in the mid 90's in his mid - late 70's.

Gary Ross

Able Sea. Bernard Francis Theodore Dingley HMS Nelson

My Grandfather Bernard Francis Dingley was a Gunner on HMS Nelson from 26th March 1942 to 9th October 1943.

I would love to hear from anybody who might have served with him or relative of someone who might have served with him. He never spoke about the war he passed away in 2007 and I obtained his service records,gunnery sheets etc He also spent time on the sub Sturgeon and time at Braganza Feb 45 to feb 46...and time at Victory, Collingwood and Repellen.

I'm having a little trouble understanding service papers substantive ratings etc...please any corrospondence would be greatly appreciated. I'm trying to gather as much inormation on his time in WW2. Thank you.

Grant Dingley

P.O. Louis George Weare HMS Nelson

My father was a Portsmouth man - his father - my grandfather was Bristol born. My grandfather moved to Pompey at the age of 8 when his father (my great grandfather) moved from HMS Daedalus to HMS Victory, then a training vessel in harbour, (yes Nelson's old ship). All three were PO's and Chiefs (Plumber's mate). My Dad started off as a PO at Haslar Hospital and was a SB/PO. He had not been on HMS Nelson long when it hit a mine in the harbour. He said, 'It was a helluva ship, hard on the men, owing to having an Admiral on board and there were always many men in the jail at the stern end, nearly always stokers'. Then my father went on to HMS Penelope.

My late friend Ken Lisk, Killick, ended up in Nelson's jail. Ken was on HMS Tartar throughout the war, his torpedo officer was Ludovic Kennedy. I've seen the crew photo too. Its him alright.

My Dad ended in 1953 on HMS Mauritius in Ceylon. We then lived in Gosport. On demob we all moved up to Wales where my mother is from. My grandfather joined the RN in 1907 - 1929. My Gt.grandfather joined the RNAV in Bristol in 1887. In 1897 moved to Pompey, he was in the RN 1897 - 1919, but remained an artificer instructor on the old HMS St.Vincent also in harbour. He died in 1935. My grandfather died in 1965, he was born in 1888 the year of Jack-The-Ripper.

Both my sons are not naval for a change! One thing is certain, the Navy has certainly changed.

Gordon Weare

Able Sea. Peter Alan Litty HMS Nelson

My father, Peter Litty, died 9 years ago, but he served on three ships during the Second World War after he volunteered in 1941, HMS Nelson, HMS Llandudno and HMS Trafalgar.

Kevin Chilcott

Edward Manser HMS Nelson

My dad, Edward Manser, served on HMS Nelson. He died recently aged 89 and I would love to hear from anybody who can remember him and to tell me a tale or two.

Susan Moore

Ldg.Stoker J. Arthur Gill HMS Nelson

Arthur Gill was my uncle and I have come into possession of his service record from his joining in September 1933 and training on HMS Champion, through his service on HMS Resolution, Challenger and Hebe. He served on Nelson from around 1940 until he was discharged on 1 September 1945 in Portsmouth, so it looks like he wasn't on board during the surrender of Japan on 2 September but could have seen plenty of action during the time he was on board. What heroes all these men were. Sometime after the war he returned to Sutton with his wife, Gladys, who was from Somerset. They had no children and he died round about 1982. If anyone has any recollections I would be interested.

Anne McCormack

Ldg.Tel. Benjamin Green HMS Nelson

My father-in-law, Benjamin Green, was a leading telegraphist. After he finished his training he was sent to Scapa Flow, to his very good fortune he was assigned to the HMS Nelson. His mate, also a telegraphist, was sent to HMS Hood and we all know about that sorry story. Benjamin was on the “Nellie” from June 1939 till it was torpedoed in September 1941 on the Malta convoys. One of his mates on board was Tommy Ambrose. My father-in-law came home on a destroyer and was then assigned to HMS Forsythe, his war finished in the Pacific.

Ken V. Townsend

Robert William Albert Jeffery HMS Nelson

My father was Robert William Albert Jeffery, always known as Bob. He served on HMS Nelson, but I dont know much about his wartime adventures. I know he lost his big toe and a small part of his foot. If anyone has any information about him I would love to hear more.

Chrissy Russell

James Edward Gooding HMS Nelson

I believe my dad served on board HMS Nelson. If anyone knew James Edward Gooding do get in touch.

M Gooding

Robert William Albert Jeffery HMS Nelson

My grandfather Robert William Albert Jeffery from Bournemouth worked on the H.M.S Nelson WW2 battle ship. If any one has any other information on my grandfather it would be much appreciated. If any one knows of him or has a relative that knows him please get in contact.

Ayesha Maddieson

Acting Ldg Sea David Cox MID HMS Penelope

My father served on HMS Penelope from June 1941 until she was sunk by enemy action in February 1944. He was mentioned twice in Dispatchs, first in 1942 following the siege of Malta where he served as a naval air gunner on Penelope and then later when he saved the lives of two shipmates when they spent between 24 and 48 hours in the water waiting to be picked up. Dad told me of the horror when the American rescue ship came in too close to the survivors, killing some with their propellors. Following the sinking, my mother received a telegram telling her my father was missing presumed drowned whereupon she gave up her flat where she was living with my brother then aged 2 and returned to live with her parents. Imagine the shock when one dark night the door bell rang and my father was standing there! In April 1945, my father joined HMS Nelson and was at Penang for the surrender of the Japanese and then one month later, he was at Singapore and the liberation of Chiangi jail which held many British POWs. Dad was in the advance party that entered the jail and he said that they entered full of high spirits at setting their countrymen free only to be met with suspicion and distrust as these poor men had learnt to trust no one and nothing. This could only have been another trick of their captors! Dad was demobbed in February 1946 and returned to civvy life with the same dedication and good humour he had shown during active service. He was a reservist for many years and I can remember his kitbag residing in our understairs cupboard until after I started school and I wasn't born until 1947, 2 years after the war ended. My father died in 1975 aged only 54 and I have little doubt that his war service contributed to his early demise.

Barbara Compton

CPO. Charles Thomas "Snowy" Johnson HMS Nelson

My father, Charles Thomas Johnson, joined the Royal Navy in 1936 by enrolling at HMS Ganges as a boy. He went on to serve until 1961, attaining the rank of CPO Gunner's Mate, of which he was understandable proud. During the war he served on a number of ships in a number of theatres, here are some, HMS Nelson, HMS Mayala, HMS Valient, HMS Indomitable, HMS Illustrious, and quite a few more besides. He was an ardent hockey player and boxer, as well as being a bit of a lad. He left us with many sailor tails of life at sea, and fun ashore.

If any old ships or their families who knew him are out there it would be great to hear from them.

Adam Johnson

CPO.ERA. Andrew Whitecross HMS Nelson

My Father, Andrew Whitecross was a Chief Petty Officer, Engine Room Articifer on HMS Nelson during WW2. He had his appendix removed on VJ Day, I think in Bombay, and was demobbed there. He was proud of his service and "The Nellie". Sadly passed away January 2008, aged 86. "A Gentle Man"

Andrew Whitecross Jnr

PO. Robert Watt HMS Nelson

My late grandfather, Robert Watt, was a gunnery petty officer on HMS Nelson at the D-day landings in 1944 when it was damaged by a mine. He was still on board when the ship went to drydock in Philadelphia, USA and remained as part of the skeleton crew while it was repaired. To pass the time ashore he and some of the other crew members picked fruit on the local farms and had their photo printed in a newspaper there under the headline: "From the beaches to the peaches".

Jim Grunberg

Kenneth Lascelles HMS Javelin

My brother, Ken Lascelles, served mainly on the destroyer H.M.S. Javelin, also for a time on the battleship H.M.S. Nelson, and included the Mediterranean (Malta convoys), and Far East campaigns. Sadly, Ken crossed the line in 2009. It would be nice to hear from anyone who remembers him. I have several photos of Ken together with some of his shipmates (unfortunately un-named)

Dave Lascelles

Pte. Joseph Moss Royal Marines

My uncle Joe Moss was a Royal Marine Private on board HMS Nelson. He served during the Ceylon campaign in 1945. He lost a thumb in the breach of a gun. He will be 90 years old this year (2012).

Stewart Herrieven

Joseph Burke HMS Nelson

My grandfather, Joseph Burke served on the H.M.S Nelson. He was on board when the Japanese surrendered in Penang (We have a couple of photographs of the surrender.) We also have a photograph taken of Lord Louis Mountbatten, Admiral Harold Thomas Coulthard Walker. I never knew my grandad, but I'm really proud of what he did for us.

Michael Waters

Frederick Perry HMS Nelson

Believe Frederick Perry joined the Royal Marines in 1942 and served on the HMS Nelson before going into 42 Commando unit. He then was involved in the Africa and Italy campaigns. Does anyone have any information please?

John Perry

AB John Arthur "Pancho" Pickford HMS Nelson

Some recollections from HMS Nelson: I remember the time we were leaving Normandy and we hit two mines. The Nelson was so badly damaged that we had to limp over to America for repairs. Whilst in America I saw Bing Crosby sing at the Philadelphia Dockyards and was part of the cortege for some Lord from the British Embassy.

Sue Evans

William Donald Tutill HMS Nelson

When my granddad, William Tuthill passed we were left a load of photos from his time in Japan. I have a lot from the HMS Nelson, even the signing of Japanese surrender at Penang which was on board the HMS Nelson. If anyone has any information I would be very greatfull.


PO. Louis George Weare HMS Nelson

My Late father, Louis Weare was on the Nelson in Pompeii Harbour in 1939. He joined the Royal Navy in 1938, like his father & grandfather before him. RN like the other forces were very big employers. My Dad was from Portsmouth, altho' my other forebearers hailed from Bristol. Dad said 'it was a helluva ship, because they had an admiral on board, altho' none of this hard discipline came his way, it did for others, in particular he mentioned too many stokers in the clink'

The Nelson struck a string of mines in Pompeii Harbour - now he knows it was a magnetic mine, dropped by a German plane. The damage was big, he said the big guns were bent and the train wheels skidded on the rail with their weight. So Dad spent time on shore... during the blitz! As he said - You just couldn't get away from it.

After this he joined the Penelope which also got hammered, and after the war HMS Mauritius. As he got older he became quite a hippy, and anti war. A real gentleman and not impressed at all with present day UK. He died in 2007, aged 90, had four children. He lost all his mates in WW2 and never made a close friend after that. God Bless you Dad, love you wherever you are.


PO. Fred Edwards HMS Nelson

Fred Edwards was born in 1920 to a family of 11, 5 sons and 6 daughters . When he was 12 (1932) his mum became a victim of cancer. At the age of 17 in 1937 he joined the Navy.

In 1939 World War 2 started. During his years in the Navy whilst at war, Fred survived the sinking of 3 of his ships, by enemy bombings. Fred had many roles in the Navy, but by far his most important was as a diver, where he would dismantle bombs underwater, rescue people and repair sinking boats. Fred ran marathons up until he died at the age of 90.


PO. Philip Francis Males H.M.S. Nelson

My father, Philip Males, served on H.M.S. Nelson for most of the Second World War. He was, I am given to understand, the youngest petty officer at the time. He was a carpenter by trade.

Maureen Saunders

A B Francis Gordon "Mac" McVittie MID HMS Nelson

My father, Gordon McVittie (known as Mac),volunteered to join the Royal Navy in Nov.1941 when he was 17. He, in fact, altered his birth certificate so it looked as though he was born in 1923 and not in 1924 his actual birth year. His certificate of service shows that Mac's first posting was the 'Collingwood'. Presumably this was a training ship? In Jan.1942, he was sent to HMS Victory and served there until his transfer to HMS Nelson in March 1942.He stayed on Nelson until Jan.1944, during which time he was made up to Able Seaman. The certificate then shows that Mac served on a number of ships including; The Pembrook, Odyssey, Dartmouth and Vernon. HMS Vernon was where he under took training to become a deep sea diver and was instructed on the dismantling of unexploded bombs, the clearance of mines and underwater obstructions. Following this training Mac was sent to wherever he was needed in order to clear the seas and create a safe passage.It was during this time that he was twice mentioned in despatches.He then returned to HMS Victoria in Jan.1946 from where he was discharged in June 1946. Mac had very fond memories of serving on HMS Nelson and always considered this to be his ship,despite having served on many others. After the war,Mac married Norma,joined first the fire service and then the police service, from which he retired at the rank of Inspector in 1976.At the time of his death in June 1986,he was survived by Norma,two children and three grandchildren.All of whom love and miss him, especially his 'old sea tales'.

Diane Parkes

Neil Hunter HMS Nelson

My father Neil Hunter died a long time ago and I can remember as a child seeing pictures of him in the Navy during WW2. His hat had HMS Nelson on it and I am keen to know if anyone can recall him as all the pictures I saw as a child have been lost.

Anne Currie

CPO. Joseph Walters HMS Nelson

Joseph Walters, HMS Victory

Joseph Walters, top row, 2nd left.

Joseph Walters was my grandmother's brother. He was born in Basford, Nottingham in about 1893. He was in the Navy for a considerable amount of time, possibly serving in the First World War. He was definitely serving onboard HMS Nelson, as his sister Nancy (she lived in Gouverneur, NY State, USA) and her daughter Olive took tea onboard in 1938. She also mentioned that he already had four medals by 1938, although I have no information on these. If anybody has any information on Joseph, that would be very much appreciated.

Mike Luszczak

AB. Thomas William Morgan HMS Nelson

My father, Thomas Morgan was on the Nelson from 24th April 1945 until the 30th of August 1946. I am in possession of his certificate of service, gunnery history sheet and interim trade certificate.

Charles Alfred Osgood HMS Nelson

Charles Osgood is the chap at the back left with the cigarette in his mouth, does anyone know the others?

My Dad, Chas Osgood, served on the HMS Nelson and I would like some history of his time in the Navy for my children and grandchildren. He was in the navy for many years and went to Malta and many more places. He went on to join the Merchant Navy.

Tracy Lupton

Joseph Cockburn Booth Royal Marines

My late father-in-law Joseph Booth served on the HMS Nelson as a Marine for the duration of WWII. I have a whole album of photos from the time.

Austin Dale

PO Edward Charles Smith HMS Nelson

My grandfather Edward Smith, joined the Navy at outbreak of War. He was initially assigned, with his best friend, to HMS Hood. On completing his initial training at Skegness. When he was due to join Hood he contracted pneumonia and ended being reassigned to HMS Nelson his best friend however went down with HMS Hood.

Dave Smith

Thomas John "Spike" Murray HMS Nelson

My father, Thomas Murray served on HMS Nelson from Aug 1941 until March 1944 I believe as a gunner on 16" forward turret. From April 1944 until May 1945 he also attended shore basis attending naval college etc. From May 1945 until March 1947 he served on HMS Howe again I believe as a gunner 14" forward turret, at this time he was temporary PO. From May 1948 until March 1949 he was on HMS King George V again gunnery 14" forward turret & as PO. From March 1949 until July 1951 HMS Victory 1 & from Aug 1951 until Aug 1953 HMS Glasgow. Whilst on HMS Glasgow he was in Malta were my mother & myself were also there (1952/3).

I have no photographs whilst he was in the Royal Navy so if anyone has any information or even new him I would love to no. He sadly passed away in Feb 1993

John Murray

Able Sea. Kenneth John Miles HMS Nelson

My Dad, Kenneth Miles, loved the 'Nelly', HMS Nelson, and had as he said to me, "Some of the best mates I'll ever have" He had one pal who he called 'Big Phipsey' (not sure of spelling) I'd love to know who he was. I have photos of his friends and all his original naval documents. Most interesting and informative.

John Miles

Frank Thorpe HMS Nelson

I believe my Dad, Frank Thorpe was a crew member on the Nelson, and he served in Murmansk on Russian convoys a lot. I am trying to trace anything I can on my late dad. He died when I was 16, so I don't know much about his war years. As I get older, my desire to know gets stronger. If anyone can help, I would be most appreciative. Thanks.

Shelagh Holden

Tel. Ernest Leonard Pegrum HMS Nelson

Just looking at my Grandfather’s naval service medals and they cover both wars. His names was Ernest Pegrum, he signed up in 1917 aged 15 and was on various training ships until August 1919 when he served on HMS Dragon. Ernest and his brother George (Royal Marine) were in Canada escorting HRH Prince of Wales and (I believe) the Royal Family and I have a postcard showing him and some of the crew at a roadside halt. A few months later in October/November HMS Dragon was involved in a conflict in Russia where she was involved in shelling the Latvian coast and sustained some casualties. My Grandfather was signed off in 1928.

I do not have the WWII service records yet but have a beautiful Crossing the Equator certificate dated 9.4.1941 with Cape Town in the background and the silhouettes of ships that were (presumably) in the convoy. I recall my mother saying he was torpedoed on HMS Nelson. I believe that he served on HMS Pasley in 1945. I understand around D Day the Nelson and the Dragon were in Portsmouth at the same time (I wonder what Grandad thought on seeing his old ship). HMS Dragon was later damaged in an attack and scuttled as a Mulberry harbour breakwater. I would just like him to be remembered. He never said much about it of course – or I was too young to listen.

David Few

Able Sea. Cornelis Rab HMS Nelson

I'm seeking information about Able Seaman Cornelis Rad A90446 or 90446Z on behalf of a friend. She has the following info about her grandfather: He worked at a meat factory in 1936 in Argentina. He served (or is thought to have served) on the Dutch Light Cruiser the Heemskerk in Scapa Flow, Orkneys. But due to engine trouble he was ordered to HMS Troubridge. Mediterranean Sea. Malta stopover, as cook & translator. He was then ordered to HMS Nelson. and saw action at Tubruk destroying German Oil supplies then went back to Malta where he was ordered back to HMS Troubridge. The ship was torpedoed off the Southern Italian coast. He was back in London in 1943 or 1944 visiting his Aunt in Redhill. Has anyone got any information about him? Did he ever receive any award? Thank you on behalf of his family.


Thomas Joseph Brady HMS Nelson

My grandfather Thomas Brady was on HMS Nelson from 1 Nov 1940 to the 7 Apr 1944. He was a cook on the ship. While touring the Mediterranean the ship was hit by a torpedo and had to port in south Africa for repairs. He was based out of Portsmouth from 1939 - 1949.


Stk. Hamish Hislop "Buck" Taylor HMS Nelson

When the nelly arrived in the USA after the D-day landings the captain, Maxwell Hyslop, was interviewed by the local news paper reporters. He made a remark that was reported in the paper, later. - That as a boy he used to shoot rabbits with his point 22 rifle. Never thought as captain of HMS Nelson he would shoot a German jeep at 22 miles range with a 16" shell. - This happened as the Nelson, along with HMS Warspite were engaged in clearing a way for Allied troops to advance.

If any one has a copy of that report which appeared in the paper I would be most greatfull, for a copy. In order to settle a lot of arguments. At the time I was on watch in the hydraulic machinery, listening to the Canadian aircraft spotter relay the events over the tannoy to the ship's company.

Hamish H. Taylor

A.B. Dominic Barclay HMS Nelson

My father Dominic Barclay served as an anti aircraft gunner on HMS Nelson 1942-194 in the Malta convoy, D Day and the Japanese surrender of Malaya and Singapore.

Kenneth Barclay

Charles David Mcquaker HMS Nelson

My father served on HMS Nelson in 1942, I don't have any further information, I would love to know more.

Alan Mcquaker

Commander Ransome HMS Nelson (d.12th Aug 1942)

Second in Command

Ord Sea. William Janes HMS Nelson (d.1st Feb 1941)

I have been researching about my great uncle William Janes and found he was killed during a furlough, but I cant find which ship he was on during this furlough. He was killed saving another mans life and I would love to have more info.

P/JX188861 Ordinary Seaman William Janes served on board HMS Nelson during WW2 and died age 24, on the 1st February 1941. He is remembered on the Portsmouth Naval Memorial Panel 52 Column 2. He was the son of Bertram and Alberta Janes of Paradise, Conception Bay, Newfoundland.

The Battleship HMS Nelson(28) was damaged on the 4th December 1939 when she struck a mine laid by U31 German Submarine. She was also struck by torpedoes from U56 on the 30th October 1939 but they failed to explode. The Italian surrender was signed on board Nelson in Valetta Harbour, Malta 29th September 1943. The ship survived the war and was scrapped in 1948.

There is nothing of note regarding naval action on the date of Williams death which would bear out the story of a death during shore leave (furlough) or when absent from the ship. Details of his Naval Service may be obtainable from Royal Navy Records.


Marine Irish James Ernest HMS Nelson Royal Marines Light Infantry

Marine Irish James Ernest served with the Royal Marines Light Infantry, Portsmouth Division on board the battleship HMS Nelson during WW2.

Peter Kinge

Edward Sydney "Tommy" Healey HMS Nelson

This photo is of my Father-in-Law, Edward Healey he is the sailor on the left as you are looking at the photo. Surviving family have no idea of his war-time service and seem surprised that it appears he was in the Royal Navy, although pre war he was in the merchant navy. All we can see is the name Nelson on the cap and can only assume he was serving on HMS Nelson. The photo appears to be when the ship was probably on a refit in America.

If anyone can shed some light it would be appreciated.

Derrick Wilkinson

Robert Fyfe "Roy" Luther HMS Nelson

Robert Luther served on HMS Nelson.

Craig Luther

PMR Mid. Ronald Walter Harris HMS Nigeria

My father, Ron Harris, served on HMS Nelson(1940-1941), King George V(1941) and Nigeria(1941-1943). The only thing he really mentioned about the war was the sweetheart he left behind in Charleston, Carolina!

I guess a lot of what they saw wasn't that pleasant. He did say how guilty he felt as he was the only midshipman in his gun turret to have survived one bombardment. I have a photo of Ron in Murmansk on Ski's with 6 shipmates maybe his shipmates families might be able to identify them for me!

Madeleine Treloar

OrdSea. William Janes HMS Nelson (d.1st Feb 1941)

William Janes served on HMS Nelson, he was killed during a furlough, his date of death listed as 1st Feb 1941, I have searched and have found no ships were lost on this date. No records of any casualties on this day but my uncle. We have done extensive research and come up empty every time. If anyone out there has any information, please contact me.

James Vincent Kirkbride HMS Nelson

My dad James Kirkbride was a cook on the battle ship HMS Nelson during the Second World War. Dad died in April 2010 so I cannot ask him to confirm the questions I have. Like most of the other veterans I have spoken to he was reluctant to talk about his involvement in the conflict; however he did talk about other things he witnessed away from the front line.

The story I would love to verify is this: Dad told me that when the Nelson stopped off in Portugal the England football team were due to play Portugal in an international match, as the England team could not get to Portugal a team from the Nelson stepped in to play the Portugal national team and were losing 10 to nil by half time. I have written to the FA and asked them to confirm this story by they failed to reply.

My dad was present on D day when the Nelson was hit by torpedoes, and while the ship was being repaired in the USA dad was given permission to work at the Campbell’s Soup factory during his off duty time. He also witnessed the Japanese surrender at Penang in 1945 I have two photos of the surrender.

Michael Kirkbride

Tel. John Harry Cushing HMS Nelson

Our Dad, John Harry Cushing, joined the Royal Navy on the 23rd March 1943 at the age of seventeen and a half and was trained at HMS Royal Arthur, HMS Cressy, HMS Mercury and HMS Vicas as an ordinary Telegrapher. He joined HMS Nelson in December 1943.

He remained on the Nelson until September 1945. Following the Japanese surrender in Singapore, we think he was transferred to the mine sweeper, HMS Friendship, and was released to shore on the 17th September 1946. Dad died in Swanage in May 1987. Apart from his war service medals we think we have his Navy Knife, which is inscribed 'Cunnery Lockspike Bosum'.

Able Sea. John Arthur Herbert HMS Nelson

My father John Herbert, served on the Nelson from March 18 1942 until April 21 1944. He was on the AA gun crew on one of the bow guns. I enclose photos but am not sure if they were taken while he was serving on the Nelson. My Father is on the left in both.

Joseph Charles Sanson HMS Nelson

My dad, Joe Sanson was on Nelson, Valiant, Endevour, Rodney these were just a few, he boxed for the navy served in Scotland, Malta and in dry dock in Simon Town SA.

Susan Tonin

Able Sea. Robert Korah Johnson HMS Nelson

Robert Johnson served as a Stoker on HMS Nelson.

Stewart Johnson

Able.Sea. Thomas Edward Guselli HMS Nelson

My dad, Thomas Guselli, served on HMS Nelson and remembers being in Singapore when the bomb was dropped. He is nearly 91 and keeping well. He remembers a few names and I hope someone remembers him.


Able Sea. Anthony Blackstone Anglis HMS Nelson

Tony Anglis was on the "Nellie" during D-Day. No exact details but he speaks fondly of his first ship which he joined aged 15.

Dave Cair

Stanley Alfred Jones HMS Nelson

My dad, Stanley Jones, served on the Nelson from 1943 until 1945 when he was transferred as a torpedo man to LST in Singapore in 1945. I have photos of him and his ship mates if anyone is interested.

Terry Jones

Ted Coker HMS Collingwood

I am trying to find out more about my grandfather, Ted Coker. He entered the RNVR in 1940 as an enlisted man and was wounded in 1942. He was admitted to Great Yarmouth General Hospital. After he recovered, he trained to be an officer at HMS Collingwood. He was a beach master at the Sicily landings and ended the war in Naval Intelligence. He also served with coastal forces, I think around 1940-42. He may also have served aboard HMS Nelson. I know that post-war there was a cup named after him `The Coker Cup' which I think may have been something to do with coastal forces.

Douglas Read

Raymond Hulstone HMS Nelson

My father, Raymond Hulstone, served on board HMS Nelson during WWII. Sadly, he died when I was five years old. I know too little about him or his mates. He was a keen footballer and broke his leg playing for the ship, I believe this was in Cape Town.

Roger Hulstone

Capt. Fred "Ag" Atkins HMS Nelson

I am looking for information about my grandfather, Fred Atkins. He was a Captain and his nickname was Ag. He served on HMS Nelson for a period, and was involved in Operations Husky, Halberd, and Pedestal. I lack any further information. Can anybody help, or tell where is a place to start?

Dan Atkins

L/Stkr. Sydney Bernard "Jack" Tunnell HMS Nelson

Leading Stoker Tunnell

Equater Crossing Certificate

My grandad, Leading Stoker Sidney 'Jack' Tunnell, served in the Royal Navy for his entire working career. Originally from Cranleigh, Surrey, he lived in Portsmouth, Southsea, when not at sea. He survived the war, and moved back to Surrey, following the rehousing of 'bombed out' families from Portsmouth. In the pictures, the men are wearing their hats on back-to-front, so as not to give away their ship's name (HMS Nelson). He is the one on the right in both pics. He died in the early 1970s. I also include a photocopy of his certificate issued on board HMS Nelson, for the naval tradition when crossing the Equator for the first time. It's dated 9th April 1941, and signed by 'A.Moore'.

Christopher J Tunnell

Stkr. Ronald Thomas George Lovejoy HMS Nelson (d.13th Mar 1945)

My uncle Ronald Thomas George Lovejoy died aboard HMS Nelson. He was 1st class stoker and is buried at Trincomalee War Cemetery.

Stephen Lovejoy

Marn. Ronald John Rawlins HMS Nelson

Ronald Rawlins served with the Royal Marines onboard HMS Nelson.


TA Leading Seaman John Thomas "Spike" Murray Gunnery HMS Nelson

My father John ( Spike ) Murray served on HMS Nelson from 1941-1944 as a gunner (16" forward turret). He was also a gunner HMS Excellent from 1944-45 as TA Petty Officer. After the war from 1945-47 he served on HMS Howe as a gunner (T Petty Officer) and he was on HMS Glasgow in Malta when he left the navy in 1953. If any one knew him or has any information on him I would love to hear from them as he passed away in 1992.

John Murray

Sto. George Arthur Calver HMS Nelson

My dad, George Calver, always said that he shut the boilers down on Nelson for the last time. Nelson was to be towed for scrapping, but the captain decided to steam the ship instead. According to dad (now deceased), the captain's words were, "we'll go under our own steam". This was the last journey for Nelson.

Lester Calver

Stkr1. John Lawson Fernie HMS Nelson

John Fernie served on board HMS Nelson from 11th July 1941 onwards.

Ross Fernie

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