HMS Edinburgh (1939) CC (5th)
This the fifth ship to carry the name Edinburgh was the name ship
of a class of two cruisers.
Built by Swan Hunter of Wallsend, laid down 30-Dec-1936, launched 31-Mar-1939 and commissioned 06-Jul-1939.
At the start of WW2 formed part of the 18th Cruiser Squadron at Scapa Flow, but on 01-Oct-1939 was transferred to the 2nd Cruiser Squadron at the Humber.
She worked as convoy escort for Scandinavian convoys until Mar-1940 when she had a short refit which lasted until 28-Oct-1939.
She then rejoined the Home Fleet with the 18th Cruiser Squadron.
In Mar-1941 covered the Lofoten Raid, and May-1940 took part in operations during the Hunt for the Bismarck when she intercepted the blockade runner Lech.
In Jul-1941she went to the Mediterranean for operation Substance then again in September for Operation Halberd.
By Nov-1941 she was back on Russian convoy escort work.
On 30-April-1942 while on convoy duty to Murmansk, she was torpedoed twice by U-456 and critically damaged. She later managed to raise steam and headed slowly for safety, but on 02-May-1942 was attacked by German destroyers. She managed to sink Z26 before being hit by a torpedo fired by one of the destroyers, before the were driven off. She lost all power and began to flood, so she was sunk by the destroyer HMS Foresight.
In addition to the loss of 57 of her crew, £5 million in gold bullion (at 1942 prices), was also lost, this being en route to Russia as war payment. In 1982 the gold then worth £45 million was salvaged.
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This page last edited -
15 December, 2012.
Copyright © Ian M King, except where otherwise indicated.