Please help with a CGM/DSM medal look-up

Discussion in 'The War at Sea' started by steved3811, May 26, 2018.

  1. steved3811

    steved3811 Member

    Could anyone please help with a CGM /DSM medal look-up for my grandfather James Davies RN ?

    I have very little information or a service number, but I know he served with the Royal Navy and was a torpedo man on the submarine HMS Sceptre (P215) and later the anti-submarine trawler HMS Butser during WW2.

    I'm going to request his service record from the MOD but one of the requirements is his service number... I am in possession of a book that was presented to him many years ago by a friend/colleague and the final part of the inscription on the inside cover reads:

    "To Jim (James) Davies RN, CGM, DSM"

    I have no idea if this is genuine or was written-in subsequently, but if it's correct could be a lead-in to identifying his service number?

    There was a story I heard from a family member many years ago that he was involved in the evacuation by submarine of a French general from occupied France. Again, this is hearsay and I'm unable to verify any further details but could this be the reason for the award of a medal?

    Any help or suggestions would be greatly appreciated as I'd love to know more about my grandad's war service.


    Attached Files:

  2. CL1

    CL1 116th LAA and 92nd (Loyals) LAA,Royal Artillery Patron

    You dont require his service number, date of birth and death cert will do
  3. Tullybrone

    Tullybrone Senior Member


    Have you had a look on the London Gazette site yourself?

  4. timuk

    timuk Well-Known Member

    Once you have his Service Records you will be able to establish the dates and which ships he was serving on. In the meantime the following may be of interest.
    HM Submarine Sceptre (P215) had a particularly successful and eventful time under the command of Lt Ian S McIntosh RN (later Vice Admiral Sir Ian Stewart McIntosh KBE, CB, DSO, DSC). The DSO was awarded during his time in Sceptre. I have come across instances in other submarines where after a successful mission the crew were all awarded DSMs and this may be how your grandfather got his if this happened with Sceptre and he was onboard at the time.
    Lt. Ian Stewart McIntosh , DSO, DSC of the Royal Navy (RN) - Allied Warship Commanders of WWII - (scroll down page to log of HM S/M Sceptre).
    HMS Butser appears to have been stationed at Freetown for convoy duties.
    HMS Butser (T 219) of the Royal Navy - British ASW Trawler of the Hill class - Allied Warships of WWII -

    steved3811 likes this.
  5. Did your grandfather have any middle name(s)? If so, what was his complete name including all middle name(s) in their exact spelling and official sequence?
  6. steved3811

    steved3811 Member

    Hi Steve
    Thanks for responding.
    I have tried to look at The London Gazette site but it doesn't appear to have records of the Conspicuous Gallantry or Distinguished Service medals... I've tried inputting his name as well but can't seem to find any record that matches although I must admit I'm not the best with the Gazette site's search function!
  7. steved3811

    steved3811 Member

    Hi Michel

    No middle name(s) - he was born JAMES DAVIES

  8. steved3811

    steved3811 Member

    Thanks Tim
  9. So far I could not find any mention of any award either on the Gazette or at the National Archives.

    The story of the evacuation by submarine of a French general from occupied France reminds of that of Général GIRAUD (see Henri Giraud - Wikipedia), but it was HMS SERAPH (in November 1942), not SCEPTRE.

    I'm sure you have seen this, but just in case you haven't, a summary of "Notable events involving Sceptre" can be read here: HMS Sceptre (P 215) of the Royal Navy - British Submarine of the S class - Allied Warships of WWII -

  10. Tony56 likes this.
  11. timuk

    timuk Well-Known Member

    Just to add. The newspaper article attached to original post is rather inaccurate due no doubt to poor reporting.
    It is unlikely that James Davies served in HM S/M Sceptre for three and a half years as she was not launched until 1943. The incident of being depth charged in January 1941 could not have happened on Sceptre. Although Sceptre was later depth charged several times I can find no record of her being damaged. Likewise I can find no incidence of her being bombed and abandoned.
    The references to the Tirpitz are misleading. Whilst true, they do not refer to Sceptre. It was X9 being towed by HM S/M Syrtis that sank when the tow parted and it was X5, towed by HM S/M Thrasher, that disappeared after being launched on the mission. HM S/M Sceptre was towing X10, which was launched on the mission but developed mechanical problems. She was recovered by HM S/M Stubborn but had to be scuttled on the way home.
    The London Gazette does include awards of CGM and DSM. I have looked at the award of the DSO to Lt McIntosh and it does not include any notification of awards to other crew members. In hindsight my remarks about all of a submarine crew being awarded DSMs may be misleading as the previous occasions all referred to service in WW1 submarines.

  12. steved3811

    steved3811 Member

    Hi Michel

    He was born JAMES DAVIES in Beswick, Manchester on 8 January 1905 and died in Sheffield in 1967 when I was 16 months old. Sadly, I'm now next of kin but have very little to go on other than the newspaper clipping about the X-Craft midget submarine raids and the brief inscription in the book he was given in the early 1960's...

  13. steved3811

    steved3811 Member

    Thanks Tim

    I must admit I was confused by the Sceptre reference albeit I'm no expert!

    It's so frustrating as I've no surviving family members to ask so I might just have to bite the bullet and wait 12 months for his service records...
  14. timuk

    timuk Well-Known Member

    Don't know about the Navy records office but I recently got some Army records in less than six weeks and that was over Christmas and New Year.

Share This Page