MiDs again HMS Cossack 1940

Discussion in 'The War at Sea' started by Simon_Fielding, Feb 11, 2019.

  1. Simon_Fielding

    Simon_Fielding Withnail67

    Another friend, another MiD - does this refer to *the* HMS Cossack? Surely a more shore-based role? But how would you be MiD in a shore-based classroom? And the date seems right for River Plate?

    AEW served in the Navy until 1964 and was awarded an OBE


    Warrant Schoolmaster Arthur Ernest Willsteed, B.Sc., Royal Navy, H.M.S. Cossack.
  2. Orwell1984

    Orwell1984 Senior Member


    He shows up under ships company for HMS Cossack destroyer as the schoolmaster for the period mentioned.
  3. Simon_Fielding

    Simon_Fielding Withnail67

    Thank you! How fascinating....
  4. timuk

    timuk Well-Known Member

    MiD awarded to Schoolmaster Willsteed, whilst serving aboard HMS Cossack for actions during the Second Battle of Narvik. Nothing to do with the 'Altmark incident' or the River Plate.

    From HMS Cossack (i), destroyer
    13th March 1940
    Deployed as screen for HMS WARSPITE in Vest Fjord with HM Destroyers HERO, FOXHOUND and FORESTER, joined later by
    Detached from HMS WARSPITE and deployed to enter harbour at Narvik with HMS FOXHOUND and HMS KIMBERLEY covered by HMS WARSPITE gunfire. 2nd Battle of Narvik. Engaged and sank German destroyer ERIC GIESE with HMS FOXHOUND.
    Engaged crippled German destroyer DIETHER VON ROEDER with the other two Home Fleet destroyers and hit by nine 5in shells in return fire before enemy destroyer sank. Sustained serious damage with 11 killed and 23 of ship’s company wounded. One shell exploded in forward structure killing all of the ammunition supply party for “A” gun. Other hits in Boiler Rooms and consequential damage disabled ship which grounded as then unable to manoeuvre.
    (Note: One sources records that the German destroyer was scuttled.)
    Came under shore fire after damage.
    14th Ship refloated on rising tide and took passage under stern way to Skelfjord, escorted by HMS KIMBERLEY.

  5. Simon_Fielding

    Simon_Fielding Withnail67

    Thank you! That's very useful. My friend has forwarded two great photos, one with AEW being presented to Montgomery and an intriguing at-sea image with two large aircraft carriers right and an unknown vessel ahead - I think it looks a little like the Royal Yacht Britannia? thumbnail (1).jpg thumbnail.jpg
  6. Tricky Dicky

    Tricky Dicky Don'tre member

    He also appears in this database, you might like to explore further

    UK, Navy Lists, 1888-1970

    First enrty I can find:

    Name: Arthur Ernest Willsteed
    Year: 1937
    Book Title: Navy List: July, 1937
    Archive Name: Peter Singlehurst

    Last entry I can find:

    Name: Arthur Ernest Willsteed
    Year: 1964
    Book Title: Navy List: Autumn, 1964
    Archive Name: Peter Singlehurst

    About UK, Navy Lists, 1888-1970
    This database includes multiple volumes of the Navy List, the Royal Navy’s official published list of officers.
    Published regularly since 1814, the Navy List is a good starting place for researching the career of an officer in the Royal Navy, Royal Marines, Queen Alexandra’s Royal Nursing Service, Coast Guard, and other naval entities. The list includes both commissioned and warrant officers, and along with names, lists can indicate rank, seniority, decorations, and other details.
    The Navy List includes numerous groupings. For example, officers are grouped by rank. These include admirals, commanders, captains, lieutenants, chaplains, carpenters, boatswains, artificer engineers, gunners, surgeons, and others. There are also lists of ships with their officers and current stations, as well as lists of pensioners and retired officers.
    Organizations and items included among list lists varied over time. In the volumes in this database, you will find officers in the Royal Naval Reserve (RNR—including the New Zealand Branch) and Royal Navy Volunteer Reserve (RNVR—including the South African Division), the Royal Naval School of Music, the Royal Humane Society medal roll (where you may find enlisted men included), as well as lists of clerks, schoolmasters, civilian dental surgeons, warrant writers, warrant armorers, head schoolmasters, head stewards, and others. You will also find regulations, members of boards, vessels for sale, and hundreds of other details related to life and service in the Royal Navy.

  7. timuk

    timuk Well-Known Member

    Picture 2. With the ship in foreground flying a Union Jack and the side manned it looks very much like a Fleet Review by Her Majesty on board HMY Britannia. My guess is that it is the 1957 Review off Invergordon. I would also guess that the ship from which the photo is taken is one of the Royal Yacht's escorts, HMS Duchess, Diamond or Corunna.

    Last edited: Feb 13, 2019
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  8. Simon_Fielding

    Simon_Fielding Withnail67

    Fantastic - thank you both. I've posted the pictures elsewhere and it's suggested that the carriers are Eagle and Ark Royal...
  9. Simon_Fielding

    Simon_Fielding Withnail67

  10. timuk

    timuk Well-Known Member

    Don't think HMS Eagle was in the Review. Three carriers involved, steamed in starboard column in order HMS Ark Royal, HMS Albion and HMS Ocean.
    Photo 2 Post 5. If that is a carrier in the far distance that would make the two carriers clearly showing as Albion followed by Ocean. I now think the ship from which the photo is taken is HMS Apollo flying the Flag of CinC Home Fleet.
    Watch here:

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