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Updated Aug. 22-2010
To Acanthus on the "Ships starting with A" page.
Tonnage: 900 (925?) displ. t.
Built at Troon, Scotland in 1941.
Captain: Grønningsether, later Captain Bruun.
5 British built, Flower class corvettes were taken over by the Norwegian Navy in the U.K. They were Montbretia, Eglantine, Acanthus and Rose in 1941, and Potentilla in Jan.-1942. The Norwegian navy was to be responsible for supplying the crews, their salary, food and uniforms, while other expenses were to be paid by Royal Navy. They were used as escorts in the North Atlantic and carried out over 80 attacks against U-boats. When Potentilla was returned to Royal Navy in March-1944, she was replaced by a Castle class corvette, which was named Tunsberg Castle under the Norwegian flag. Buttercup, also Flower class, was transferred after the loss of Tunsberg Castle in 1944. See individual links for details on each corvette.
Atle Wilmar, Norway has given me the following:
Transcribed from a document received from Don Kindell - His source: The late Arnold Hague's database.
Acanthus is mentioned among the escorts for the westbound North Atlantic Convoy ON 34 in Nov.-1941.
In Jan.-1942 she escorted the westbound ON 58* (with Montbretia), which left Liverpool on Jan. 20, but due to bad weather it returned to port the next day. Along with Rose, A. Hague has now included her among the escorts for Convoy HX 171, and the following month she's listed, together with Rose, as escort for the westbound Convoy ON 64* (departure Liverpool Febr. 7). Shortly thereafter she escorted Convoy HX 174 for a while (with Rose) and in March she appears (with Eglantine, Potentilla and Rose) in the westbound Convoy ON 73*, which departed Liverpool on March 5 and dispersed on the 16th. A. Hague has also named her, with Eglantine and Potentilla, as escort for Convoy HX 181 in March and for Convoy HX 182 in March/Apr.-1942. Eglantine, Potentilla, Rose (and Kos XX) are also listed for the latter. Acanthus subsequently escorted the westbound Convoy ON 86* (with Eglantine, Potentilla and Rose), which departed Liverpool on Apr. 14, and in May we find her, with Eglantine, Potentilla and Rose, in the slow Convoy SC 83, which left Halifax on May 7. In June Acanthus is mentioned, along with Montbretia, Potentilla and Rose, in Convoy ON 101* (departure Liverpool June 5), and later that month they all appear in the slow eastbound Convoy SC 88 - ref. SC convoy escorts.
With Montbretia and Potentilla she later escorted the westbound Convoy ON 111*, departing Liverpool on July 10, dispersed on the 24th, and at the end of that month all 3 are listed among the escorts for Convoy HX 200, which arrived Liverpool on Aug. 7-1942. Acanthus subsequently left Oversay, England on Aug. 16 and joined the westbound Convoy ON 122, which was also escorted by Potentilla, Montbretia and Eglantine, as well as the British destroyer Viscount. Several U-boats attacked during the night of Aug. 24/25, and sank 4 ships; 3 British (Katvaldis 3 died, Sheaf Mount 31 died, Empire Breeze 1 died) and the Norwegian D/S Trolla, which was torpedoed by U-438 (Franzius). The Commodore's report is also available for this convoy. Acanthus, Potentilla, Montbretia and Eglantine are now named among the escorts for Convoy HX 205, which left Halifax at the end of August and arrived Liverpool on Sept. 11-1942. According to the Commodore's notes "Escort was met at 09:00 on Sept. 2 in 46 46N 51 10W", presumably referring to the ocean escort? All 4 of them show up again in the westbound Convoy ON 132*, which departed Liverpool on Sept. 19-1942.
The following month, Acanthus took part in the fierce battle for Convoy SC 104*, in which several Norwegian ships sailed. This convoy departed New York on Oct. 3-1942. 8 merchant ships were lost, but not without damage and loss to the attackers, as can be seen in Uboat.net's account on SC 104 - link at the end of this page. Acanthus took on board 21 of the 39 survivors from U-353, including the commander, Wolfgang Römer. (U-353 was sunk by depth charges from HMS Fame on Oct. 16). Merchant ships sunk were: The British Ashworth - all 49 died, Empire Mersey - 16 died, and Southern Empress - 48 died, the Norwegian D/S Fagersten - 19 died and D/S Senta - 35 died (no survivors), the Greek Nellie - 32 died, the Yugoslavian Nikolina Matkovic - 14 died, and the American Susana - 38 died. My page about Potentilla has more details on this battle; see also the external links provided at the end of this page.
In Dec.-1942 we find her mentioned among the escorts for the westbound Convoy ON 155, together with Eglantine - see also the Commodore's narrative. The 2 of them also escorted the slow eastbound Convoy SC 116* in Jan.-1943, as well as the westbound Convoy ON 165 the following month - the Commodore's narrative is also available. A. Hague also has Acanthus and Eglantine in Convoy HX 227*, which left New York on Febr. 18 and arrived Liverpool on March 6 (see HX convoy escorts). Acanthus, Eglantine, Potentilla and Rose are later listed in the westbound Convoy ONS 6*, which departed Liverpool on Apr. 29, and in May that year all 4 them are named among the escorts for Convoy SC 131. In June Acanthus is listed, together with Potentilla and Rose, in the westbound Convoy ON 189*, departing Liverpool on June-16. The following month the 3 of them appear among the escorts for Convoy HX 246, and later that month we find them mentioned in the westbound Convoy ON 194*, which left Liverpool on July 24. In Aug.-1943 all 3 escorted Convoy HX 251 (simply noted as the B 6 Group on my page about this convoy).
In Dec.-1943, Acanthus escorted the Arctic Convoy JW 55A, returning with RA 55A. The former sailed from Loch Ewe on Dec. 12-1943 and arrived Kola on the 22nd, and the latter left Kola that same day and arrived Loch Ewe on Jan. 1-1944. The Norwegian Stord was also among the escorts for both these convoys. No Norwegian ships took part in these convoys and, therefore, they are not included in my Arctic Convoys section, but if more info is needed, it can be found at the external link provided below.
Acanthus was subsequently used as escort for the westbound North Atlantic Convoy ON 221*, which left Liverpool on Jan. 24-1944. Acanthus, Eglantine and Rose are now listed among the escorts for the westbound Convoy ONS 29*, which left Liverpool on Febr. 12. Later that month all 3 escorted Convoy HX 281, and the following month Acanthus and Eglantine were used as escorts for the westbound Convoy ON 229*, which departed Liverpool on March 23. Both of them are also named among the escorts for HX 286 in Apr.-1944. In Sept.-1944 Acanthus, Buttercup, Rose and Tunsberg Castle escorted the westbound Convoy ON 252*, which left Liverpool on Sept. 7, and later that month all 4 escorted Convoy HX 310 (note, however, that Buttercup did not come under the Norwegian flag until the end of Dec.-1944, after the loss of Tunsberg Castle). Acanthus also appears in Convoy HX 326 in Dec.-1944.
In Jan.-1945, she's mentioned among the escorts for the westbound Convoy ON 277, and later that month she's named in Convoy HX 334. She subsequently escorted the westbound Convoy ON 285*, which left Southend on Febr. 16. Buttercup is also included, and they both show up again in the slow Convoy SC 169*, which left Halifax for the U.K. on March 7-1945, as well as in the westbound Convoy ON 294* at the beginning of the following month, and later in SC 173* (departed Halifax on Apr. 18-1945).
Jan-Olof, Sweden has told me that according to Lenton & Colledge Acanthus became mercantile (incorrect) Andanes in 1946, sold in 1956, whale catcher Colin Frye (Union Whaling). She's listed as Andenes at Uboat.net (link below); this is also repeated in a posting to my ship forum; the thread starts here, there are several responses. I've only seen this corvette referred to as Acanthus in Norwegian books. Atle Wilmar, Norway has given me the following dates:
Came under Norwegian command (as Acanthus) at Troon on Sept. 26-1941, "ready for war" Nov. 1-1941. After the war was over in Norway she arrived Bergen on May 15-1945, purchased in 1946 and renamed Andenes on Aug. 10-1946.
Related external links:
Group Wotan and the Battle for Convoy SC 104 - Detailed description of the convoy battle. (A section of Rob Fisher's Home Page).
2 Norwegian casualties of Southern Empress - Olaf K. Hansen is listed as captain of this ship, a Whale Catcher Helge Dahl is also commemorated.
Russian Convoys and JW 55A and RA 55A are included.
The Norwegian armed forces - includes info on the Norwegian Navy, ships, submarines etc. etc.
HNoMS Andenes (K 01) - Part of Uboat.net's section on allied warships. See also Acanthus. Uboat.net adds she was towed from Sandefjord to Glasgow, Scotland in June 1956 for convertion to whaler by A & J Inglis, Ltd. Renamed Colin Frye. Sold in 1957 to Taiyo Gyogyo KK,. Tokyo. Renamed Toshi Maru No. 2. Scrapped in Japan in 1970.
Back to Acanthus on the "Ships starting with A" page.
The text on this page was compiled with the help of: "Nortraships flåte", J. R. Hegland, and misc., including A. Hague's database, received from D. Kindell.