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M/T Noreg
Updated March 14-2012

To Noreg on the "Ships starting with N" page.

Source: Historical Department, MAN B&W Diesel, Copenhagen.
They also sent me this picture (while building).

Manager: H. M. Wrangell & Co. A/S, Haugesund
7605 gt, 4500 net, 12 130 tdwt.
Dimensions: 452.5' x 59.2' x 27.01'.
Machinery: 2 x 6 cyl.4T EV B&W 3000 bhp, 11 knots. 2 prop.

Delivered in July-1931 from Burmeister & Wain's Skibs- & Maskinbyggeri, Copenhagen (586) as Noreg to Skibs-A/S Corona (H. M. Wrangell & Co. A/S), Haugesund.

Captain: Andreas Høviskeland all through the war.

Noreg served as oiler for the convoy escorts (Admiralty service).

Her voyages are listed on these original images from the Norwegian National Archives:
Page 1 | Page 2 | Page 3 | Page 4 | Page 5

Please compare the above voyages with Arnold Hague's Voyage Record below.

  Voyage Record
From June-1940 to Dec.-1945:  

(Received from Don Kindell - His source: The late Arnold Hague's database).

Follow the convoy links provided for more information on each (where the Convoy column is left blank, it means convoy is not known).

Errors may exist, and some voyages may be missing.

Departure From To Arrival Convoy Remarks
1940 June 17 Marseilles Oran June 20 P 6 Convoy available at P 6
(external link)
See also Page 1
June 24 Oran Gibraltar June 25 Independent Notional dates
June 29 Gibraltar Trinidad July 13 Independent
* Aug. 9 Trinidad Curacao Aug. 13 Independent
* Aug. 14 Curacao Sydney, C.B. Aug. 26 Independent
* Sept. 2 Sydney, C.B. Clyde Sept. 18 SC 3 See also narrative below
*These 3 voyages are not included on the archive document.
Oct. 13 Clyde OB 228 For NYC.
Dispersed Oct. 17.
See also OB 228
(external link)
Oct. 17 Dispersed from OB 228 New York City Nov. 3 Independent
Nov. 17 New York City Curacao Nov. 26 Independent
Nov. 27 Curacao Bermuda Dec. 3 Independent See also narrative below
Dec. 12 Bermuda BHX 96 See HX 96
Dec. 18 Bermuda portion joined main convoy Clyde Dec. 29 HX 96
1941 Febr. 14 Clyde OB 286 For Port of Spain.
Dispersed 51 35N 21 35W, Febr. 17.
Febr. 17 Dispersed from OB 286 Trinidad March 6 Independent
March 10 Trinidad Halifax March 23 Independent
March 27 Halifax Milford Haven Apr. 16 HX 117 See also narrative below
Apr. 18 Milford Haven Falmouth Apr. 19 Independent
May 10 Falmouth Milford Haven May 11 Independent
May 11 Milford Haven Clyde May 13 Independent See also narrative
June 3 Clyde OB 330 For Curacao.
Dispersed June 7.
Convoy available at OB 330
(external link)
June 7 Dispersed from OB 330 Curacao June 22 Independent
June 23 Curacao Bermuda June 29 Independent
July 4 Bermuda BHX 137 See HX 137
July 10 Bermuda portion joined main convoy Clyde July 21 HX 137 See also Page 1
July 31 Clyde ON 3 For Curacao.
Dispersed Aug. 14.
Aug. 14 Dispersed from ON 3 Curacao Aug. 22 Independent
Aug. 23 Curacao Gibraltar Sept. 10 Independent
Sept. 13 Gibraltar Curacao Sept. 27 Independent
Oct. 1 Curacao Halifax Oct. 10 Independent
Oct. 10 Halifax Belfast Lough Oct. 22 HX 154
Oct. 23 Belfast Lough Milford Haven Oct. 25 BB 93 Convoy available at BB convoys
(external link)
Oct. 31 Milford Haven ON 32 For Trinidad.
Detached Nov. 6.
Nov. 6 Detached from ON 32 Trinidad Nov. 23 Independent
Dec. 12 Trinidad Halifax Dec. 24 Independent
Dec. 27 Halifax Reykjavik Jan. 9-1942 HX 167 For Hvalfjord
1942 Febr. 1 Reykjavik Murmansk Febr. 10 PQ 9 See also Page 2
March 1 Murmansk Akureyri March 10 QP 8
March 12 Akureyri Reykjavik March 15 Independent Notional sailing date
* March 22 Reykjavik ON 79 Joined from Iceland March 25.
Detached Apr. 7.
Convoy will be added.
See ships in ON convoys
*See also Convoy RU 16 and narrative below.
Apr. 7 Detached from ON 79 New York City Apr. 8 Independent
May 7 New York City Halifax May 10 Independent
May 14 Halifax Reykjavik May 29 SC 84
June 4 Reykjavik Loch Ewe June 8 RU 26
June 12 Loch Ewe Cape Cod Canal June 26 ON 103 Convoy will be added.
See link above
June 26 Cape Cod Canal New York City June 27 Independent
June 30 New York City Hampton Roads Independent
July 5 Hampton Roads Key West July 13 KS 517 Convoy available at KS convoys
(external link)
July 14 Key West Trinidad July 23 WAT 5 Convoy available at WAT convoys
(external link)
July 31 Trinidad Key West Aug. 9 TAW 10 Convoy available at TAW convoys
(external link)
Aug. 11 Key West Hampton Roads Aug. 16 KN 129 Convoy available at KN convoys
(external link)
Aug. 18 Hampton Roads New York City Aug. 29* Independent *Page 2 gives arrival Aug. 19
Aug. 21 New York City Cape Cod Bay Independent
Aug. 25 Cape Cod Bay Halifax Aug. 29 BX 35 Convoy available at BX convoys
(external link)
Sept. 6 Halifax Loch Ewe Sept. 17 HX 206 See also narrative below
Sept. 18 Loch Ewe Scapa Flow Sept. 19 WN 338 Convoy available at WN convoys
(external link)
Sept. 24 Lyness Loch Ewe Sept. 25 EN 141 Convoy available at EN convoys
(external link)
Sept. 25 Loch Ewe New York City Oct. 11 ON 133 Convoy will be added.
See ships in ON convoys
Nov. 4 New York City Gitmo Nov. 11 NG 319 For Curacao.
Convoy available at NG convoys
(external link)
Nov. 11 Gitmo Curacao Nov. 14 GAT 21 Gitmo to Curacao.
Convoy available at GAT convoys
(external link)
Nov. 16 Curacao Gitmo Nov. 19 TAG 21 Curacao to Gitmo.
Convoy available at TAG convoys
(external link)
Nov. 19 Gitmo New York City Nov. 25 GN 21 Convoy available at GN convoys
(external link)
Nov. 27 New York City Clyde Dec. 13 HX 217
Dec. 15 Clyde Liverpool Dec. 16 Independent
Dec. 19 Liverpool Clyde Dec. 20 ON 155 Returned
Dec. 28 Clyde New York City Jan. 15-1943 ON 157 Escort Oiler
1943 Jan. 30 New York City HX 225 Straggled Febr. 10.
Febr. 10 Straggled from HX 225 Loch Ewe Febr. 14 Independent
Febr. 15 Loch Ewe Scapa Flow Febr. 16 WN 395 Convoy available at WN convoys
(external link)
Febr. 23 Lyness Loch Ewe Febr. 24 EN 198 Convoy available at EN convoys
(external link)
March 3 Loch Ewe New York City March 20 ON 170
March 23 New York City Gitmo March 30 NG 351 Convoy available at NG convoys
(external link)
March 30 Gitmo Curacao Apr. 2 GAT 53 Gitmo to Curacao.
Convoy available at GAT convoys
(external link)
Apr. 6 Curacao Gitmo Apr. 9 TAG 52 Curacao to Gitmo.
Convoy available at TAG convoys
(external link)
Apr. 9 Gitmo New York City Apr. 18 GN 52 Convoy available at GN convoys
(external link)
Apr. 18 New York City Loch Ewe May 3 HX 235 Escort Oiler
May 4 Loch Ewe Invergordon May 6 WN 423 Convoy available at WN convoys
(external link)
May 9 Invergordon Loch Ewe May 11 EN 226 Convoy available at EN convoys
(external link)
May 11 Loch Ewe New York City May 25 ON 183 Escort Oiler.
Convoy will be added.
See ships in ON convoys
May 31 New York City Loch Ewe June 15 HX 242 Escort Oiler
June 15 Loch Ewe Scapa Flow June 16 WN 442 Convoy available at WN convoys
(external link)
June 19 Lyness Clyde June 22 EN 244 Convoy available at EN convoys
(external link)
July 16 Clyde Clyde July 18 Independent Put back.
Compare w/Page 3
July 22 Clyde Londonderry Independent
July 25 Londonderry New York City Aug. 7 ON 194 Escort Oiler.
Convoy will be added.
See ships in ON convoys
Aug. 13 New York City Hampton Roads Independent
Aug. 16 Hampton Roads Bizerta Sept. 6 UGS 15 USA to Bizerta.
Convoy available at UGS convoys
(external link)
* Sept. 8 Bizerta Bizerta Sept. 23 A. Hague says:
Voyage data unknown
(see note below).
*According to Page 3, she left Bizerta on Sept. 14, arrived Palermo on the 17th, departing again on Sept. 21, with arrival Bizerta Sept. 23.
Sept. 24 Bizerta New York City Oct. 15 GUS 16 Bizerta to USA.
Convoy available at GUS convoys
(external link)
Dec. 2 New York City Loch Ewe Dec. 15 HX 269 Escort Oiler, 60 depth charges.
Convoy will be added.
See ships in HX convoys
Dec. 16 Loch Ewe Scapa Flow Dec. 17 WN 519 Convoy available at WN convoys
(external link)
Dec. 21 Scapa Flow EN 321 Detached Dec. 21.
Convoy available at EN convoys
(external link)
Dec. 22(?) Detached from EN 321 Clyde Dec. 23 Independent
1944 Jan. 6 Clyde Akureyri Jan. 18 A. Hague says:
Probably via a UR Convoy, but no records.
Compare w/Page 3
Jan. 21 Akureyri Kola Inlet Jan. 27 JW 56A A. Hague says:
Via Akureyri Jan. 18-21.
Not mentioned, Page 3,
but see narrative below.
Febr. 3 Kola Inlet Clyde Febr. 12 RA 56 Missing movements, Page 3
* March 23 Clyde Loch Ewe March 24 Independent *Voyage not included, Page 3
March 27 Loch Ewe Kola Inlet Apr. 5 JW 58
Apr. 28 Kola Inlet Clyde May 7 RA 59
May 19 Clyde New York City June 3 ON 237 Escort Oiler.
Convoy will be added.
See ships in ON convoys
June 10 New York City Milford Haven June 26 HX 295 60 depth charges
June 26 Milford Haven Devonport June 27 See also Page 4
June 30 Devonport Belfast Lough July 2 Independent
July 3 Belfast Lough New York City July 18 ON 243 Convoy will be added.
See link above
July 25 New York City Loch Ewe Aug. 8 HX 301 Escort Oiler, 60 depth charges
Aug. 9 Loch Ewe Methil Aug. 11 WN 618A Convoy available at WN convoys
(external link)
Aug. 11 Methil Sheerness Aug. 13 FS 1541 Convoy available at FS convoys
(external link)
Again, see also Page 4
Aug. 17 Southend Methil Aug. 19 FN 1452 Convoy available at FN convoys
(external link)
Aug. 19 Methil Clyde Aug. 21 EN 424 Convoy available at EN convoys
(external link)
The rest of these 1944 voyages are not included on Page 4
Sept. 12 Clyde Loch Ewe Sept. 14 Independent
Sept. 15 Loch Ewe Kola Inlet Sept. 23 JW 60
Sept. 28 Kola Inlet Clyde Oct. 5 RA 60
Oct. 15 Clyde Loch Ewe Oct. 16 Independent
Oct. 20 Loch Ewe Kola Inlet Oct. 28 JW 61
Nov. 2 Kola Inlet Clyde Nov. 11 RA 61
1945 Jan. 3 Clyde New York City Jan. 18 ON 276 Escort Oiler.
Convoy will be added.
See ships in ON convoys
Jan. 23 New York City Londonderry Febr. 6 HX 334 Escort Oiler, 60 depth charges
Missing movements, Page 4
Febr. 11 Belfast Lough New York City March 1 ON 284 Convoy will be added.
See link above
March 9 New York City Clyde March 24 HX 343 Escort Oiler, 60 depth charges.
Convoy will be added.
See ships in HX convoys
March 28 Clyde Milford Haven March 30 BB 66/2 Convoy available at BB convoys
(external link)
Apr. 2 Milford Haven Clyde Apr. 3 MH 71/2 A. Hague says:
Probably part way in this convoy.
Available at MH 71
(external link - incomplete listing)
Apr. 12 Clyde New York City Apr. 30 ON 296 Convoy will be added.
See ships in ON convoys
May 3 New York City Sheerness May 20 HX 354 Escort Oiler.
Convoy will be added.
See ships in HX convoys
May 27 Southend Hampton Roads June 12 ON 305 Escort Oiler.
Convoy will be added.
See ships in ON convoys
June 16 Cape Henry Southampton June 30 Independent
July 17 Southampton New York City Aug. 1 Independent
Aug. 17 New York City Antwerp Sept. 1 Independent See also Page 5
Dec. 19 Antwerp Southampton Dec. 21 Independent A. Hague says:
Following repairs at Antwerp.
Some 1946 voyages:
Page 5 above

 Some Convoy Voyages: 
For information on voyages made in between those mentioned here, please see the documents received from the National Archives of Norway and A. Hague's Voyage Record above. Follow the convoy links provided for further details; the Commodore's notes are also available for most of them and several Norwegian ships took part.

According to Page 1 of the archive documents, Noreg was on her way from Beaumont to Naples when war broke out in Norway on Apr. 9-1940.

With fuel oil for Clyde, she's listed in the slow Sydney (C.B.)-U.K. Convoy SC 3, from which the Norwegian Lotos was sunk in Sept.-1940 - follow the links for more info. There's a note regarding Noreg in one of the original documents for this convoy saying that she was "not traced" - I'm not sure whether this means she did not sail, or perhaps it simply means she lost touch with the convoy. This voyage is not included on Page 1 above, though the page does show that she was at Clyde on Oct. 13. In fact, she's listed, with destination New York, in Convoy OB 228, originating in Liverpool on Oct. 13, dispersed Oct. 17, Noreg arriving New York Nov. 3 (Dokka was sunk - follow the link for details). The ships sailing in this convoy are named at the external website that I've linked to within the Voyage Record, while some reports are available on my own website on this page (see also the external link at the end of this page). Astra, Brask, Chr. Knudsen, Gudrun, Polyana and Topdalsfjord are also listed. Having made a voyage to Curacao and on to Bermuda, Noreg was scheduled for the Bermuda portion of Convoy HX 94 at the beginning of Dec.-1940, but instead joined HX 96 (Bermuda portion), destination Clyde, where she arrived Dec. 29, remaining there for quite some time (Page 1).

In Febr.-1941 she's listed in station 45 of Convoy OB 286, joining from Clyde, her destination being Port of Spain. She arrived Trinidad on March 6, the convoy having been dispersed on Febr. 17. She was scheduled to return in Convoy HX 116 from Halifax on March 21, but instead joined the next convoy on March 27, HX 117 (it'll be noticed, when going back to the archive document, that she had not arrived Halifax from Trinidad until March 23).

She was damaged by an incendiary bomb when the outward bound convoy in which she sailed was attacked by aircraft on May 12-1941, but damages were minor (A. Hague gives no convoy for this date in his record above). In June she appears, together with Heina and Ingerfem, in Convoy OB 330, which originated in Liverpool on June 2 and dispersed on the 7th - ref. external link in the table above. Her destination is given as Curacao, where she arrived June 22, having sailed from Clyde on June 3 - again, see Page 1. She returned to the U.K. in July with the Bermuda portion of Convoy HX 137, bound for Clyde with Admiralty fuel in station 45, subsequently joining the westbound North Atlantic Convoy ON 3, originating in Liverpool on July 31. Noreg's destination is again given as Curacao, where she arrived on Aug. 22, having started out from Clyde Aug. 1.

From Curacao, she sailed to Gibraltar and back, then proceeded to Halifax in order to join Convoy HX 154 on Oct. 10, together with the Norwegian Hilda Knudsen, Kaia Knudsen, Ranja, Tai Shan, Samuel Bakke, Emma Bakke, Polarsol, Skiensfjord, Toronto, N. T. Nielsen-Alonso and Svenør. Some of these ships, including Noreg, subsequently joined the westbound Convoy ON 32 the following month. Noreg's destination is given as Trinidad, and she had station 44 of the convoy, which left Liverpool on Nov. 1. She arrived Trinidad on Nov. 23, having started out from Milford Haven Oct. 31 - see Page 2. Her last convoy voyage that year was made with Convoy HX 167, which left Halifax on Dec. 27. Noreg stopped at Reykjavik on Jan. 9-1942, later making a voyage to Russia, as will be seen in the next paragraph.

Noreg was the only Haugesund ship to take part in the Murmansk convoys during the war. She served as Escort Oiler for the combined Convoy PQ 9 / PQ 10 consisting of 10 merchant ships, leaving Reykjavik on Febr. 1-1942, arriving Murmansk safely on the 10th. The other ships were the British Atlantic, Empire Selwyn and Trevorian, the Russian Ijora, Revolutsioner, Friedrich Engels and Tbilisi, the American West Nohno and the Panamanian El Lago (and possibly the Russian Kiev). The Norwegian armed whalers Hav and Shika were part of the escort group for this convoy. Noreg returned with Convoy QP 8, which left Murmansk on March 1 and consisted of 15 merchant ships; namely all the ones listed above except Trevorian, and with the addition of British Workman, British Pride, Elona, Explorer (all British), the American Larranga, and the Panamanian Cold Harbor. Due to bad weather the convoy was scattered on March 4 and during this time the Russian Ijora was sunk by the German destroyer Friedrich Ihn (Tirpitz was out with 3 destroyers searching for PQ 12, in fact Convoy QP 8 met this convoy on the 7th). Larranga was also separated from the convoy in the south westerly gale on March 4 but arrived Iceland safely. QP 8 split up on March 9, with 5 of the ships arriving Hvalfjord on the 11th and the rest of the ships, including Noreg, heading for Akureyri, with arrival March 10.

On March 23 Convoy RU 16 left Reykjavik for the U.K. and Noreg is listed among the ships, but with a note saying "not for U.K.". She was bound for the U.S. at the time, and on March 25 she joined the westbound North Atlantic Convoy ON 79*, which had originated in Liverpool on March 23 and also included Brant County, Grey County, Hallanger, James Hawson, Meline, Norefjord, Stigstad and Trondheim. The convoy arrived Halifax Apr. 7; Noreg, however, arrived New York on the 8th, remaining there for a month, before proceeding to Halifax - see Page 2. On May 14, she's listed as bound for Iceland in the slow Halifax-U.K. Convoy SC 84, and arrived Reykjavik May 29, leaving again on June 4 for Loch Ewe in Convoy RU 26. From Loch Ewe, she took her place, along with Ferncourt, Frontenac, Garnes, Idefjord, Kaia Knudsen, Kong Haakon VII (Commodore Vessel), Lista, Maud, Mirlo, Scebeli, Sommerstad, Thorshøvdi, Tijuca and Troubadour, as well as the Panamanian Norvinn (Norwegian managers) in the westbound Convoy ON 103*, which had originated in Liverpool on June 12. Noreg arrived New York on June 27, and after having made voyages to Key West and Trinidad, she returned to New York and on to Halifax (convoy details in table above), heading back to the U.K. on Sept. 6 in Convoy HX 206 from there (having been cancelled from the previous convoy, HX 205). Via Loch Ewe, she arrived Scapa Flow on Sept. 19.

Together with Anna Knudsen, Athos, Bello, Brimanger, Emma Bakke, Garonne, Grey County, Kosmos II, Minerva, Molda, Nueva Granada, Petter II (returned), Polarsol, Polartank, Sandanger, Skandinavia, Thorshavet, Thorshov and the Panamanian Norbris (Norwegian managers) she subsequently went back across the Atlantic in Convoy ON 133* (originated in Liverpool Sept. 25, arrived New York Oct. 11), and after having made a voyage to Curacao and back to New York (convoy info in Voyage Record) she returned to the U.K. on Nov. 27 in Convoy HX 217, cargo of fuel for Clyde. Follow the link for more information - the Commodore's narrative is also available. Rose, Eglantine and Potentilla are named among the escorts. Noreg later joined the westbound Convoy ON 155 on Dec. 19, but returned to port, subsequently joining Convoy ON 157, arriving New York on Jan. 15-1943, having served as Escort Oiler, according to A. Hague. The Commodore was in Skiensfjord.

Noreg is said to have taken part in the operations in North Africa, but I believe this is a mix-up with Norelg. (Athos has a list of other Norwegian ships involved in the Torch operations, which had commenced in Nov.-1942).

On Jan. 30-1943, we find Noreg in Convoy HX 225 from New York to the U.K. According to the Commodore (follow link), she became a straggler during the night of Febr. 10. Her destination is given as Scapa, where she arrived (via Loch Ewe) on Febr. 16; see Page 3. She later headed to the U.S. again with Convoy ON 170, which originated in Liverpool on March 3 and arrived New York on the 20th, then made another voyage to Curacao and back to New York, before returning to the U.K. with Convoy HX 235 on Apr. 18, her destination being Invergordon, arriving there May 5. Together with Brimanger, Gefion, Laurits Swenson (Commodore Vessel), Santos, Tungsha, Vinga and Washington Express, she started her voyage back to the U.S. in Convoy ON 183* just a few days later (convoy originated in Liverpool May 10, arrived New York May 25), and at the end of that month she can be found among the ships in Convoy HX 242, departing New York on May 31; Noreg was again bound for Scapa, where she arrived June 16. In July she's listed, along with Anna Odland, Belinda, Brimanger, Dagrun, Fernmoor, G. C. Brøvig, Germa, Heimvard, Kaia Knudsen, Lista, Morgenen, Norheim and Skandinavia, in Convoy ON 194*, originating in Liverpool July 24, arriving New York Aug. 7 - Noreg had sailed from Londonderry on July 25. Acanthus, Potentilla and Rose were among the escorts for a while (see ON convoy escorts).

From the U.S., she headed to Bizerta on Aug. 16, arriving Sept. 6, Convoy UGS 15 - again, see Page 3 for details on her voyages in this period. She experienced air attacks there, but escaped unharmed. From Bizerta she later joined up with Convoy GUS 16, which left Alexandria on Sept. 19 and arrived Hampton Roads Oct. 15; Noreg arrived New York that same day, having sailed from Bizerta on Sept. 24 - ref. external links in the Voyage Record for more convoy details. It now looks like she remained in New York for several weeks, before crossing the Atlantic again. Arnold Hague has included her, together with Buenos Aires, Emma Bakke (Vice Commodore), Ivaran and Laurits Swenson (Commodore Vessel), in Convoy HX 269*, which left New York on Dec. 2-1943 and arrived Liverpool on the 16th; Noreg arrived Scapa (via Loch Ewe) on Dec. 17, according to the archive document.

In Jan 1944 she was again back in the Murmansk convoys as escort oiler; leaving Loch Ewe on Jan. 12 as the only Norwegian ship in Convoy JW 56A, reaching the Kola inlet on Jan. 28 (having sheltered at Akureyri from Jan. 18 to Jan. 21).

In the book "Sjøfolk i krig" by Leif M. Bjørkelund I found a personal story told by Able Seaman Johan Byrkja describing the passage of Convoy JW 56A. Byrkja had previously served on another Haugesund ship, M/S Geisha, as well as on M/T Thorshavet. As mentioned above, Noreg had recently arrived from New York with a cargo of fuel oil, and anchored at Greenock where some extra supplies started to show up; things like sheep skin coats, boots, wool underclothes, mittens etc., as well as 6 Oerlikons, so it didn't take long for the crew to figure out where they were headed next. He says Noreg was also given the addition of an extra storm bridge on the starboard side where a hose was placed (for replenishing the escorts) and depth charges were also brought on board (also for the escorts). I wonder if he has gotten the convoys mixed up when telling his story, afterall this book is based on interviews with seamen 50 years after the war was over, so it's quite possible. I say this because he lists King George V and Victorious as 2 of the escorts, none of these ships are mentioned by Bob Ruegg/Arnold Hague in connection with this convoy ("Convoys to Russia"). Also, she had served as Escort Oiler several times before, so it would seem this equipment had been added much earlier(?). When approaching Iceland a hurricane hit them with full force. A distress call was received from a Liberty ship which was about to go down, and shortly thereafter another vessel went down (again, this is not mentioned by Ruegg/Hague at all, but ships were sunk later on in the passage).

Due to the horrendous weather the convoy was ordered to Siglufjord, Iceland, and according to Byrkja's story Noreg was one of the few ships arriving without bad damages or lifeboats destroyed. He says the convoy had consisted of 25 ships but only 12 were able to continue their voyage (according to Ruegg/Hague, 5 of the original 20 ships did not proceed beyond Iceland, or returned to Loch Ewe. As mentioned, the convoy sought shelter at Akureyri, Iceland from Jan. 18 until the 21st). 2 American and 1 British merchant were sunk during this passage, and a British destroyer damaged (this would be the Penelope Barker - Commodore Vessel, which was indeed a Liberty Ship, and Andrew G. Curtin, also a Liberty Ship, the British Fort Bellingham and the British destroyer Obdurate, my page for JW 56A has the details). Byrkja says that being as they were the supply ship (i.e. "oiler") they had a radio and a speaker on board so that they could be contacted by the escorts day and night, and they were under a "Blue Warning", meaning all guns had to be armed continuously. Noreg had 9 of them, a 4 inch aft, 2 -3 inch and the rest 20 inch Oerlikons. 5 British soldiers manned the largest, while the crew manned the rest when they weren't on their regular sea duty; in other words, they were on some sort of duty 24 hours a day. He says they caught what sleep they could, while fastened to the guns. If they set the gun at the right height and locked it, it was possible to sleep with their arms on the gun.

Byrkja says that one night the attacks got really bad. He was at the helm and had the speaker right over his head, getting increasingly annoyed at having to listen to all the jibberish (it was all in code), when suddenly a voice came on saying "This is the Commanding officer of the convoy - admiral..", he can't remember the name. Then the voice continued politely "are we going to get a ship through to Russia or not?". Then a brief pause - "If so, then see the hell to it that we do!". A number was then called out and ordered to rescue survivors of a torpedoed ship, then another number was called and ordered to beat the enemy down on that side, and "see to it that it gets done". Byrkja says it was obvious the man was furious, and the results were amazing to watch; depth charges exploding, guns firing etc.

Noreg returned with Convoy RA 56 along with 38 other ships, departing Febr. 3-1944. This was a combination of the ships that had been in the eastbound convoys JW 56A and JW 56B. The convoy arrived Loch Ewe without incident on Febr. 11 - according to Page 3, Noreg arrived Clyde on the 12th, proceeding to Devonport on the 19th. The Panamanian Norlys (Norwegian managers) had also served as escort oiler for this convoy.

Noreg went back to Russia in Convoy JW 58, a large convoy which left Loch Ewe on March 27 and arrived the Kola Inlet on Apr. 4. No merchant ships were lost on this passage, but 4 U-boats were sunk; follow the link to my page about this convoy for more info. Noreg's return voyage started on Apr. 28 in Convoy RA 59 and she was again the only Norwegian ship. She had a number of British seamen as passengers on board as did all the other ships, including the escorts (some also had Russian personnel as passengers). The rest of the convoy consisted of 33 American and 7 British ships and was also attacked by U-boats resulting in the loss of the American William S Thayer and 43 crew and passengers on Apr. 30, 192 were rescued. 3 U-boats were subsequently sunk; the convoy dispersed and arrived Loch Ewe and Clyde May 6 and 7 respectively.

With Brimanger (Commodore Vessel), Emma Bakke, Ferncourt, Glarona, Herbrand, Laurits Swenson (whose captain served as Vice Commodore), Maud, Mosli, Norefjord, Norma, Pan Scandia, Skaraas and Velma, Noreg now headed across the North Atlantic again, having joined Convoy ON 237*, which left Liverpool May 19 (she joined from Clyde) and arrived New York June 3, returning a week later with Convoy HX 295, for which Elisabeth Bakke acted as the Commodore Ship. Early in July we find Noreg in the westbound Convoy ON 243* (originated in Liverpool July 3, arrived New York July 18), again with several other Norwegian ships, namely Geisha, Grey County, Kaia Knudsen, Mosli, Norden, Norse Lady, Reinholt (Commodore Vessel), Rutenfjell, Skaraas, Sommerstad, Sørvard and Velma. Some of these ships, including Noreg, are also listed in Convoy HX 301 from New York on July 25, a very large convoy for which Reinholt again served as the Commodore Vessel, while the Vice Commodore was in Samuel Bakke. Noreg's destination is given as Kingsnorth, and according to Page 4, she arrived there, via various other ports, on Aug. 13.

She later joined Convoy JW 60 from Loch Ewe on Sept. 15-1944, arriving the Kola Inlet on Sept. 23, then departed Kola on Sept. 28 in Convoy RA 60 for her return voyage, together with 31 other ships. Edward H Crockett, with a cargo of 1659 tons chrome ore and Samsuva, cargo of pitprops, were sunk by U-310 on Sept. 29, with the loss of 1 man from the American ship and 3 from Samsuva. (For info, Edward H. Crockett had also previously arrived U.K. with Convoy HX 301). The original Advance Sailing Telegram for Convoy RA 60 gives Noreg's destination as "Clyde for onward routing to U.S.A.", but she made another voyage to Russia and back before proceeding to the U.S. This was made in Convoy JW 61, departing Loch Ewe on Oct. 20, arriving the Kola Inlet without losses on Oct. 28. The Norwegian Marathon is also listed in this convoy, but there's some disagreement in my sources; follow the link to Marathon for an explanation. For her return voyage on Nov. 2 Noreg took part in Convoy RA 61. No ships were lost, though the frigate Mounsey was torpedoed (by U-295) and had to return to Kola. It'll be noticed, when going back to Page 4, that these voyages are not included.

Before the next convoy headed east, the battle ship Tirpitz had been sunk and a serious threat to the Arctic convoys was thereby eliminated, though the U-boats remained a threat, as the thermal layers of the Arctic made the spotting of them by Asdic almost impossible.

A visitor to my site (Philippe van Wersch) has told me that on Jan. 28-1945 Noreg, together with Dagmar Bratt, arrived at Delfzijl in the Dutch province of Groningen with a total of 3600 tons of food for the starving Dutch. However, this date does not fit with the fact that Noreg is listed, with G. C. Brøvig, John Bakke (Commodore Vessel), Marit II, Solfonn and Strinda, in Convoy ON 276*, which departed Southend Jan. 2 and arrived New York Jan. 18. She headed back across the ocean on Jan. 23 with Convoy HX 334 (Commodore in Samuel Bakke - Acanthus is named amont the escorts, see HX convoy escorts). The original convoy document gives Noreg's destination as Belfast Dock; she arrived Londonderry on Febr. 6, Belfast the next day, subsequently joining the westbound Convoy ON 284* from there. Abraham Lincoln (Commodore Vessel), Fernwood, Norsol, Sverre Helmersen, Toronto, Troubadour and Velma are also named in this convoy, which started out from Southend Febr. 10 and arrived New York March 1 - again, see also Page 4.

According to A. Hague, her return voyage was made in Convoy HX 343*, departing New York on March 9, arriving Liverpool on the 24th - Noreg stopped at Clyde that day. Biscaya (returned), Brimanger, Katy, Skaraas, Skotaas and Tai Shan are also listed. The following month we find her, along with Dageid, G. C. Brøvig, Polartank, Strinda, Montevideo, Tai Shan and Thorshavn, in Convoy ON 296*, which left Liverpool Apr. 12 (Noreg joined from Clyde) and arrived New York on the 30th, and A. Hague now has her in Convoy HX 354*, which left New York May 3 and arrived Liverpool May 18 - in other words, VE Day was celebrated at sea. Going back to Page 4, we see that Noreg arrived Sheerness on May 20. She had again been in the company of other Norwegian ships, namely Carl Oftedal, G. C. Brøvig, Salamis, Strinda and Washington Express. Her last convoy voyage was made, together with Hilda Knudsen, Laurits Swenson, Meline, Salamis and Samuel Bakke (Commodore Vessel), in Convoy ON 305*, departing Southend on May 26; Noreg arrived Hampton Roads on June 12.

As can be seen from A. Hague's Voyage Record, Noreg often served as Escort Oiler and also carried extra depth charges on board.

Page 5 shows some of her voyages at the end of 1945, as well as some 1946 voyages.

* The ON convoys will be added to individual pages in my Convoys section in due course, along with further details on each. In the meantime, the ships sailing in them (and escorts) are named in the section listing ships in all ON convoys. Also, the entire HX series will eventually be updated and completed, including the already existing convoys (some have already been updated), but for now, please go to ships in all HX convoys.

More info on the other Norwegian ships named on this page is available via the alphabet index below, or go to the Master Ship Index.


Laid up at Bøvågen in July-1958. Sold in Dec. that year to I/S Geron (Per Lodding), Oslo and renamed Geron. At Oslo Sept. 19-1959, in use as a depot ship. Delivered to Norsk Skipsopphugging (breakers), Christiania Spigerverk, Grimstad in Aug.-1960.

Related external links:
Ships hit from Convoy OB 228

Stavern Memorial commemoration - This page says that Able Seaman Abraham A. Haugen died in an accident at sea on Oct. 28-1942. According to Page 2, Noreg was in New York on that date.

Russian Convoy Series | Russian Convoys 1941-1945
Murmansk Run Article
The Northern Sea Routes - based on Admiral Kuznetsov's memoirs (Russian Navy Minister).

See also:
Arctic convoys of WW II

Back to Noreg on the "Ships starting with N" page.

The text on this page was compiled with the help of: "Nortraships flåte", J. R. Hegland, "Våre motorskip" by Leif M. Bjørkelund and E. H. Kongshavn, "Convoys to Russia 1941-1945" by Bob Ruegg and Arnold Hague, "Sjøfolk i krig", Leif M. Bjørkelund and misc. - ref. Sources/Books.


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