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

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HMS Royal Arthur

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

Those known to have sailed in

HMS Royal Arthur

during the Second World War 1939-1945.

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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John Carey Class 112 HMS Royal Arthur

John Carey is seated front row last on the right

My Uncle John Carey was in class 122 at Royal Arthur.

Chris Town

Desmond Field class 48 HMS Royal Arthur

Was sent to HMS Royal Arthur on 4 September 1941 and joined Class 48.

Desmond Field

William John Taylor HMS Royal Arthur

William John Taylor HMS Royal Arthur 1943

This photograph is of Class 78 (Signals) at HMS Royal Arthur Sep-1943 to Mar-1944. My Father, William John Taylor, is front-row first left.

Brian M Taylor

Jennie Roe

My mother, Jennie Roe, was posted to HMS Royal Arthur for the duration of the war, first at Skegness then Corsham. She died on the 20.09.07 and among her paper work we have found The Souvenir Programme for the GRAND VICTORY BALL on the 7.06.1946. It has been signed by Janet, Joy Barber, Doreen, Bobbie, Connie Cockroach and Ethel. Are any of you still around and do any of you remember Jennie Roe?


Percy William White HMS Royal Arthur

My grandfather, Percy William White (born in 1913 in Sherborne, Dorset), trained at HMS Royal Arthur at Skegness. Unfortunately he passed away before my sister and I were born, so I never got to hear any of his wartime memories. My mother and grandmother never spoke much about him as his death caused my mother (then only 16) to have a nervous breakdown. From the odd snippets of information we gathered from our mother and grandmother before their deaths, my sister and I believe Percy's death was suicide - possibly a result of Post Traumatic Stress?

I would be very grateful if anyone can provide me with any information about him, his training, or where he was stationed during WWII, as this could help my sister and I to get to know the grandfather we never met

Laura Hardy

Raymond Charles Bath HMS Royal Arthur HMS Lockleven

I am looking for information on my grandfather and the people he spent his time with during his training. His name is Raymond Charles Bath. He was at HMS Royal Arthur from 4th July 1940 until sometime in January 1941. His first ship was HMS Lockleven. This ship was apparently based in Grimsby and was attacked in Bridlington.

My Grandad was a Telegraphist and I think his class number whilst at HMS Royal Arthur was W28.

Jonathan Bath

Sig. Reginald Gould HMS Pembroke

I have recently been given a list of ships my father was on during WW2 and I have been unable to find a lot of them in the records on line. As he passed away 7 years ago I am unable to ask him.

This has always been a great fascination to me and I want to make some record of his times to pass on to future generations .. so I was wondering if anyone could point me in the right direction where to find more information? The only one I have really found alot about is the Royal Arthur .. the others are

  • Scotia Mercury
  • Fox
  • Europa
  • Oystermouth Castle
  • Prophet
  • Pembroke

Clare Gould-smith

Ldg. Coder. William Horace Whitmey HMS Cape Portland

My father William (Bill) Horace Whitmey served at HMS Royal Arthur from 7th July 1943 to 15th July 1943.

Stuart Whitmey

Stoker 2nd class Norman Tearle (d.31st May 1940)

My Uncle, Norman Tearle was killed aged 20 during operation Dynamo 31st May 1940. I am trying to establish which boat he would have been serving on at the time of his death. He was called up for service in March 1940 and killed on 31st May. The Tearle family web site pays tribute to Norman's courage and sacrifice. There is a worldwide Tearle "meet" on Sat. 17th July 2010 and I would welcome being able to take along any further answers on this day. We are particularly remembering and honouring all family who gave their lives in both wars.

I do have a photo of Norman with Royal Arthur class 102. If there are any survivors' relatives' from that class using this site, I would be most happy to receive contact. I am the last surviving member from this branch of our family.

Catherine Brunton-Green

Claison Meredith Class 220 HMS Royal Arthur

Class 220, HMS Royal Arthur

I attach a photograph in my possession of Class 220, HMS Royal Arthur, taken during WW2. It came to me via a relative who knew the mother of one of the men photographed. He is Claison Meredith, back row, 5th from the left. He survived the war and was later an Anglican vicar (in Weston-Super-Mare at one time I believe). Originally he was from Neath, Glamorganshire, Wales.

Paul Sambrook

Asst Steward. Harry Fredrick Jones

Harry Jones served onboard:
  • HMS Royal Arthur - 25 July 1944 - 08 August 1944
  • HMS Duke (Anson Division) - 09 August 9144 - 12 September 1944
  • HMS Victory - 13 September 1944 - 06 December 1944
  • Lent to RAF - 07 December 1944 - 15 February 1945
  • HMS Victory - 16 February 1945 - 14 May 1945
  • HMS Gozo - 15 May 1945 - 10 September 1945
  • HMS Victory - 11 September 1945 - 01 April 1946
  • HMS Mayina - 02 April 1946 - 09 June 1946
  • HMS Victory - 10 June 1946 - 10 January 1947

Tracy Pink

Killick George Bryant Spendley

Looking through some old family photos I came across one of my father, George Spendley, in the class of 1945, Royal Arthur. I know many stories of his naval career, but I don't know much about the Royal Arthur.

Alison Crowe

Stoker. Sydney George Beeching HMS Kittywake

My father and mother both served in the Second World War. Both enlisting in England. My father Sydney Beeching, enlisted in the Navy and after spending some time at Royal Arthur served at Pembroke and on the Kittywake from 20 December 1940 to 2 July 1943 according to his papers. Then he served on Pembroke 4 Steadfast from 3 July 1943 to January 1946. He also went to America on the Queen Mary when she went over for refitting as a troop carrier.

My mother was a telephonist in the Air Force but I don't know much about her postings or anything other than she was stationed at different airfields around Kent. Her name was Barbara Edna Bayly.

Heather Osborne

Tel. John James Harrison HMS Dundonald (d.6th June 1944)

My Uncle John James Harrison, was in class 201 of at Royal Arthur. I believe it would have been taken in 1941 but I do not have a precise date. He was killed on D-Day and is buried just outside Caen in France.

Stwd. Percy Raymond Linsey LST.420 (d.7th Nov 1944)

I have been researching my uncle Percy Linsey who died in active service on the 7th of November 1944. He was travelling to the Walcheren Islands on LST420. As they were trying to land in heavy seas it became impossible. So they were instructed to return to England. As they were leaving Walcheren, unfortunately, they hit a mine and the craft broke up.

I have had quite a good response over the last few years. However I have come to a standstill. I was just looking on this website and spotted all the Royal Arthur pictures. I don't know if my uncle is on any of the pictures. I would be gratefull for any copies of any group photos.

My uncle was Percy Raymond Linsey, he served on: HMS Royal Arthur from 4th of May 1943, HMS DrakeII from 8th June 1943, HMS LakerII from 20th August 1943, HMS Caroline, HMS Domett from 20 September 1943 and LST 420 until 7th of November 1944.

Any other information would also be helpful and appreciated.

Christopher Raymond Antcliffe

Ord.Sig. Denis Peter Dalby HMS Royal Arthur

Denis Dalby trained at HMS Arthur between November 1943 and March 1944.

Graham Dalby

Gilford Charles "Gil" Purr HMS Royal Arthur

Gilford Purr, known as George in later life, was a Radio Operator at HMS Royal Arthur having joined up from the Merchant Navy in 1942 when he witnessed the scuttling of the Graf Spee in Montivideo Harbour on one of his trips. He met his wife Joan Foy, who was a telephonist on the main switchboard at HMS Royal Arthur and it was whilst he was chatting her up during one night shift that the base was bombed and the switchboard room ceiling was blown in and he left his post to go and rescue his wife to be. Any other information from this time on either of them would be great

Alan G. Poole

Sidney Eric Smith HMS Royal Arthur

My paternal Grand-father, Sidney Eric Smith, was at HMS Royal Arthur training camp in Skegness during 1943 as I have a picture of him there which he wrote the date on. He married my Grand-mother, Peggy, on the 15th May 1948. I was wondering if any person may remember him. I know it's a long shot with a surname like Smith but I don't have any other information, apart from what happened after the war.

Tel. Joseph Thomas Gale HMS Royal Arthur

My father, Joseph Thomas Gale, was a telegraphist at Royal Arthur from 27th September until 3rd April 1940. I have his certificate of service and am trying to trace the ships he served on until 9th October 1945.

Mike Gale

Stkr. Arthur Sidney Frounks The Ryde Queen

My late father's name was Arthur Sydney Frounks and he was born in Taunton, Somerset on 3 June 1916 and passed away on 17 December 1998. He served during the Second World War and was stationed at HMS Royal Arthur Class 112 in Skegness.

I know he served on the Paddle Steamer the Ryde Queen which I am led to believe was a minesweeper. I also know from things which my late father told me one ship which he was on was blown up and he got sucked through the funnel on the ship and I believe it was only my father and seven other officers who survived.

I am trying to trace his naval records, any information which anuone may be able to give me will be of great help I am trying to set up a family tree.

Kevin Frounks

Pearl Daphne Harvey

My mother, Pearl Harvey, married Albert Edward Briggs (Tedd) one of the three survivors of HMS Hood, in Derbyshire England. She was from Southend-on-sea, Essex and he from Redcar, Yorkshire. They were married on 20th March 1943 and I believe they met in 1940 and again on HMS Arthur after the sinking of HMS Hood. I would much love to hear any stories and anecdotes from colleagues or sons and daughters form those times. I have photos of them as a pair in 1940, and after and Mum in WRNS' uniform plus a photo of their wedding in 1943, which I can scan and upload if anybody remembers them.

Elizabeth Hoy

Ernest William Robert Tugwell

My father Ernest Tugwell was in Class 21. HMS Royal Arthur from 9th of July 1942 until 25the Jan 1943, training for signals before moving to HMS Pembroke which, I believe, was was at Chatham.

In the picture he is in the 2nd row from the front, 5th from left. he was born in October 1923 so he was just 19 years old.

Robert Tugwell

Peter Sydney Dowden HMS Arthur (d.21st February 1942)

Peter Sydney Dowden was my grandfather and served on HMS Royal Arthur until his death there on 21 February 1942. I was told there was some sort of bombing or bomb accident at the camp and his death was recorded as killed in action. I would be interested if anyone else knows what this incident was.

Martin Nicholson

Sig. Geoffrey Swinnerton HMS Eaglet

I happened to stumble across this website during a search I conducted looking for information on my Great Grandfather's naval career during World War 2. In the group photo of Royal Arthur Class 101, sixth from the left standing in front of the concrete pillar, is my Great Grandfather Geoffrey Swinnerton. We have an old copy of this photograph at home! From Royal Arthur he was sent to HMS Eaglet in Liverpool where he appears to have been based when on dry land.

He worked on merchant ships during the war, sailing to the USA, however he spent much of his career sailing back and forth from Britain to Murmansk and Archangel in Russia as a member of the Arctic Convoys. He spent a great deal of time there and as a result developed respiratory problems, a consequence I imagine of the brutal weather conditions and the fact he spent time in the water at some point, which contributed to his death in 1967. Other than this information I am yet to fill in the gaps.....

Helen McFeely

Wilfred Haynes HMS Byrsa

I am researching my father, Wilfred Haynes. Dad was probably better known as Bill. Prior to joining up he was a P&TO in Redditch, Worcestershire. Dad was born in 1920 in Levenshume, Manchester. He never spoke about the war in any form and now it's too late to ask him as Dad passed away. In the photograph Bill is 1 row from the back, 2nd signalman on the left.

His service included postings at: HMS Byrsa (Naples) and HMS Euroclydon (Malta) from 1942. After the war he married and moved to Bridge Farm Beoley, one of several residences. I'd be very grateful for any information.

Simon Haynes

Arthur Ernest Wesson

I have a photo of my father, Arthur Wesson, in Class 222 at HMS Royal Arthur. I think he may have been involved in signals and he spoke about twice being sunk on destoyers.

David Wesson

Dirk Antoon Schoots HMS Royal Arthur

My father, Dirk Antoon Schoots, was a war volunteer from Holland. In May/June 1945 he was at HMS Royal Arthur (Skegness), in June/October 1945 at HMS Glendower (Pwhelli) and in October/November 1945 at HMS Excellent (Portsmouth or Plymouth).

Corry Schoots

Stwd. Richard Stranack RN Patrol Service (d.8th Aug 1945)

My uncle, Richard Stranack was a Steward and saw service in the Royal Naval Patrol Service (Harry Tate's Navy). His number was LT/JX229268. He died in the service on 8th August 1945. Does anyone remember him or have photos of Class 104, Royal Arthur?

Richard Lee

Alwyn "Bill" Spencer HMS Duckworth

I am trying to contact anyone who was in class 226 of Royal Arthur, for a family friend called Bill Spencer real name Alwyn. He is deperate to contact some of his old naval mates he went on after the induction to serve on the Duckworth. If you know him please get in touch so he can share some of his wartime memories.

Val Ingram

Ralph J. Goodfellow HMS Royal Arthur

I was at HMS Royal Arthur in September 1943. I was a volunteer and became a Stoker in the Royal Navy.

Ralph J Goodfellow

Freddie Briscoe HMS Victory

My dad, Freddie Briscoe (deceased) was at Royal Arthur from 7th August 1940 until January 1941. He was a physical education student before he joined up. His first ship was HMS Victory (17th January 1941 until 29th January 1941).

Paddy Briscoe

Ian Brown HMS Dauntless

I served on HMS Royal Arthur, HMS Dauntless and HMS Ranpura from 1943 to 1945. I was a CW candidate and would welcome any pics.

Ian Brown

Alun Jones HMS Royal Arthur

My father, Alun Jones served on HMS Royal Arthur, Skegness between 31st December 1941 and 22nd June 1942 as Yeoman of Signals. I have a photo dated 25th March 1942 showing "Class 115".

Hefin Jones

Percy William Woodley HMS Pembroke

Enlistment Notice

Certicate of service

I came across my great granddad, Percy William Woodley, war enlistment notice letter and service record from when he was in the Royal Navy. My great granddad was enlisted on Monday 30th Nov 1942 and trained at HMS Royal Arthur at Skegness until 7th of January 1943. He later joined HMS Pembroke.

Jennifer Dawson

Sig. Robert Sloan Crawford HMS Royal Arthur

My father, Robert Crawford, joined the Royal Navy in August 1940. He started his Navy life at Royal Arthur and was there until Jan 1941. We have a list of ships or shore-based establishments which include HMS Pembroke, HMS Antrim and HMS Europa.

We know that he left the Navy in February 1946 and that he was a signaller but he never spoke about anything to do with his time in the war. Sadly, Dad died in 1986. I have been in touch with Navy Command Secretariat 4 and they have very helpful in getting Dad's war record for me. I would like to honour his life.

Robert Crawford

Ldg.Photo(A)(Ty) Frank "Snaps" Mitchell

Howard Mitchell

Thomas Unknown HMS Royal Arthur

I have come across a picture of my aunts fiancee who was based at HMS Royal Arthur and who then was transferred to HMS Thracian. He is the one in the middle of the picture and I only know his name was Tom. Unfortunately my aunt died in 1945 before he came home from the war. I was only a baby. I have attached a photo in case anyone remembers him.

Carol Robertson

David Shankland HMS Royal Arthur

David is back row, second from right

David Shankland was born in Eaglesfield on 5th of November 1924. He attended Breconbeds Primary, the same school as Dambuster Grant Rumbles, whose father was headmaster. David and Grant's brother Ian were in the same class. He also attended Lockerbie Academy, and worked at the Annadale Observer before training at HMS Royal Arthur. David was on board HMS EL Hind and was one of only six survivors when the SS Fort Stikine exloded in Bombay Docks on 14th April 1944.

After leaving the Navy after the war David went into nursing, and was the first male nurse in Dumfriesshire. David died in Dumfries on in 2012, aged 87.

Iain Gow

Geoffrey Fielden Priestley HMS Royal Arthur

Going through some of my father, Geoffrey Priestley's, old photos, I found this. He was a telegraphist air gunner and trained at HMS Royal Arthur.

D. M. Fairbrother HMS Royal Arthur


D. M. Fairbrother trained with Class 198 at HMS Royal Arthur.

P. B. Fairbrother

O.Tel. Robert Kemp "Tiny" Liddell HMS Bellona

My father, Robert Liddell was in class 238 at HMS Royal Arthur in October and November 1943. He went on to serve on HMS Bellona the light cruiser which took part in activities in the Channel, provided bombardment support to D Day, in July 1944 he crossed the Arctic Circle for the first time in an operation to attack the Tirpitz and finally accompanied three convoys to Murmansk. I now realise that the ship also took part in the celebration of Norway's liberation as the crew seem to have marched through Oslo as part of the celebrations as I have seen photographs which appear to show this. My father never mentioned this so I cannot say with certainty that he was there.

My father was in his own words a terrible sailor having no sea legs. Having said that it seems that at least one of the Arctic Convoys hit dreadful storms that almost capsized the escort carrier HMS Campania so perhaps there was some justification for being a paler shade of green for much of the time. He was an Ordinary Telegraphist. His stories of his days in the Navy are now slightly faded as he died in 1970. However, the accounts of the convoys tallies with his recollections including HMS Bellona shooting down at least one German aircraft.

I have copied the names of HMS Arthur class 238 in the hope this will be of help to others.

Left to Right

Back Row: F Harrison, Adaams, J Fraser, Ja (?) Fraser, J Batchelor, A Brockett, R Black, C(?) Bredsk(?), D Horne, W Marnock.

2nd Back Row: Gordon J Hughes, Robert, K Liddell, Gordon J Barclay, A Muir, R Birch, J Blair, J Blythe, Lynas.

3rd Row: Jake Brown (or Boon?), G Franks, S Hemingway, H Leask, Boise(?) Rudy(?) Briggs, J Fraser.

2nd Front Row: Harry Sarah(?), Hamill Bob Cantlay, Ken Carline, Bastow, L/S Gardner, Percy Good, J (or T) Atkinson, Ginger Kelman, P Kelly.

1st Row (Front): A Machicot (?), Bd Burke, Griffin, S Hemingway.

Robert Liddell

Stkr. Frank Frances Brown HMS Royal Sovereign

Feank Brown HMS Pemboke

Frank Brown HMS Royal Sovereign Refit USA

Frank Brown Royal Sovereign

My father's brother, Frank Brown, of Norwich, Norfolk was a fishmongers assistant at the start of World War 2. He signed up to join the Royal Navy and was in class 107 at HMS Royal Arthur from 25th of February 1941 to 31st of March 1941 this is taken from his Royal Navy Record. On the photo he second from the right on the back row. He then went to HMS Pembroke until 21st of July 1941.

He then served on HMS Royal Sovereign from 21st of July 1941 to 13th of December 1943 as a Stoker First Class, during his time with the ship it served in the Mediterranean as an escort ship. He also went to America where the HMS Royal Sovereign had a refit in Philadelphia, whilst being refitted the Ships Steering wheel was presented to the city as a token of appreciation of the hospitality shown to the officers and crew.

He then went back to HMS Pembroke for a while before going to HMS Braganza which is in the Royal Navy barracks in Bombay India 1st of May 1945 until 30th of November 1945. Finally he spent a week at HMS Sultan finishing with HMS Pembroke on 4 May 1946

Alan Brown

Sgnlmn. Owen John Barnard HMS St Tudno

My Dad, Owen Barnard, joined the Royal Navy in 1943 at the age of 17. He trained at HMS Royal Arthur, Scotia, Valkyrie ll and Pembroke before he joined HMS St Tudno as a Signalman in 1944. He remained on this ship based in Holland until he was discharged at the end of the war.

Felicity Laurence-Doig

Sea. Lucien Aendenboom HMS Buttercup

Near the end of the war Lucien Aendenboom fled from occupied Belgium and made the Channel crossing. Although very young, he managed to join the Navy he was trained at Skegness (Royal Arthur) and was later detached to the HMS Buttercup until 1944.

Due to his failing memory now, this is almost all we know about his story Is there anybody able to give some more details?


Edmond Thomas Howarth HMS Royal Arthur

Edmond Howarth trained at HMS Royal Arthur in class 140.

David Howarth

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