Leading HSO meaning

Discussion in 'The War at Sea' started by DanMorris1989, Mar 30, 2019.

  1. DanMorris1989

    DanMorris1989 Active Member

    Exactly as the title states ... what is a Leading HSO?

    Gentleman concerned was Bob Burn of HMS Foylebank when it was bombed in 1940.

    Thanks in advance

  2. Tricky Dicky

    Tricky Dicky Don'tre member

    Health Services Officer
    Hydrographic Systems Operator

  3. Richard Lewis

    Richard Lewis Member

    Hello Dan,

    Stoker II (HSO) = Harbour Service Duties only. Source: Admiralty Fleet Order 1893/43 (29 April 1943).
    Or perhaps,
    Seaman HSD = Higher Submarine Detector. Source: Admiralty Fleet Order 2354/42 (21st May, 1942).

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  4. timuk

    timuk Well-Known Member

    Not a rating I recognise as being RN. HMS Foylebank was a converted merchantman becoming a Harbour Defence Vessel. Unusual in that she retained her Merchant Navy engineering staff so perhaps a Leading HSO is a MN rating.

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  5. Roy Martin

    Roy Martin Senior Member

    I don't recognise it as an MN rank or rating
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  6. DanMorris1989

    DanMorris1989 Active Member

    Hi all

    Admittedly the stamp that printed this could've said HSD or HSO.

    From what Richard Lewis has sad I'd say HSD as I know he was involved in pinging radar to find subs so presume it's HSD

    Thanks for all your help chaps
  7. timuk

    timuk Well-Known Member

    Radar is for identifying aircraft or surface ships. Sonar for submarines. Since HMS Foylebank was basically a floating AA platform and that it was 1940, I doubt very much she was fitted with either.

    Does the rubber stamp actually refer to HMS Foylebank or is it connected to some other event in Bob Burn's career. Perhaps if you posted the paperwork we can give a better answer.
    Last edited: Mar 31, 2019
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  8. Hugh MacLean

    Hugh MacLean Senior Member

    Hello Dan,
    There is no RN or MN rate by that name. Could you post the relevant page please?
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  9. DanMorris1989

    DanMorris1989 Active Member

    I don't have a picture of the stamp as a mate has just won it on ebay and the advert has been removed.

    HMS FOYLEBANK First Day Cover Signed on 4th July 1986 by 6 survivors and printed with their rates/ranks next to it our man is stated as Bob Burn Leading HSO (or HSD more likely)

    Yes excuse the radar sonar confusion ... have been at work since 3am this morning so a bit fatigued but yes my mate stated Bob was a Submarine hunter so I presume this is the Sonar connection. Bob Burn was actually Osmond Henry Burn and he is my mates grandfather. Hence why he saw the ebay signed first day cover and bidder for it ... a bargain at £7
  10. Hugh MacLean

    Hugh MacLean Senior Member

    There is a post on Ships Nostalgia from Bob's son-in-law HMS Foylebank - Ships Nostalgia which states Bob was an ASDIC operator on the ship.
    As Richard Lewis points out in #3 HSD = Higher Submarine Detector which was a seaman sub spec for an ASDIC operator.

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  11. timuk

    timuk Well-Known Member

    As Hugh says sub-specialisation. His rating would be Leading Seaman.
    From naval-history.net
    Submarine Detector [harpoon and coil crossed by streak of lightning]:


    Submarine Detector Instructor [crown above]

    Higher Submarine Detector [star above, star below]

    Submarine Detector


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