British Ships Involved

Aircraft Carriers

HMS D.77 Nabob (Bogue/Attacker Class)
HMS Nabob before she was engaged in the attack against the German battleship Tirpitz in Norway. She was on lend lease to the British Royal Navy from the US Navy and manned by the Canadian Navy.
This is a plane landing on the HMS Nabob.
Crash landing on Nabob. The planes hook missed the arresting cables and the plane hit the crash barriers.
A tender (Liberty boat) along the HMS Nabob.
The Captain of HMS Nabob, Horatio Nelson Lay. His signature can be seen at the lower right corner of the photo. HMS Nabob participated in the attacks against the German battleship Tirpitz in Norway, Operation "Goodwood I" and "II", on 22 August 1944. The Tirpitz was attacked by 32 Barracudas escorted by 43 fighters from the aircraft carriers HMS Formidable, HMS Indefatigable, HMS Furious, HMS Nabob and HMS Trumpeter. The Tirpitz received no hits. Canadian Robert W. Powers, whom I owe a big thank you for allowing me to show photos from his private photo album. Robert W. Powers was "Upperdeck Stoker" and member of the "Catapult Crew" on HMS Nabob during the attack against the Tirpitz. Robert W. Powers was only 18-19 years old at the time he served on HMS Nabob. The dramatic incident with the torpedo hit and the fight to save the ship and bring it home have marked him to this day.
Engineering staff on HMS Nabob 1944.
Catapult crew on HMS Nabob 1944. Robert W. Powers can be seen standing as number 4 from the left in sweater and no hat. The photo was taken just before Roberts's nineteenth birthday.
Photos of crew members of HMS Nabob.
More photos of crew members of HMS Nabob.
HMS Nabob after she was torpedoed by the German submarine U-354 on 22. August 1944 in the Barents Sea with severe damage. Her crew managed to get her back after 5 days and arrived at Inverness (or possibly Scapa Flow) 27 August 1944 for emergency repairs. Judged not worth repairing, towed to Rosyth, beached and abandoned. Decommissioned 30 September 1944 but retained in nominal reserve. She was stripped to support sisterships.

Some sources claim that HMS Nabob was towed back to Britain. This is not true. The crew on Nabob got her up steam and came back under her own power with a skeleton crew, after a near run in with another u-boat. The crew on Nabob used cutting torches to remove the two 5 inch guns and dropped them overboard. This helped raise the stern so there wasn't as much pressure on the drive shaft bearings. As the galley was destroyed the crew lived on short rations and rum for the five days it took to get the ship home. The ship was back in Britain 27 August 1944 after five days of hell as Robert Powers describe it.

HMS Bickerton, destroyer, which was on lend lease from USA since autumn 1943. She took a lethal hit from the same submarine, U-354, that badly damaged HMS Nabob on 22. August 1944 in the Barents Sea.
The HMS Bickerton was refuelling from the HMS Nabob when Nabob got hit. HMS Bickerton got the second torpedo from the German submarine U-354 on 22. August 1944 in the Barents Sea.

A Canadian destroyer came back to help and the German submarine dived. The Canadian destroyer rescued the Bickeron crew that was alive and then sent HMS Bickerton to the bottom as she was hit to bad to save

The Canadian destroyer then took off part of the Nabobs crew and the remaining crew on HMS Nabob, including Robert W. Powers, got her up steam and sailed her back to Britain. Some sources mention that HMS Nabob returned to Scapa Flow but Robert Powers believe it was Inverness. HMS Nabob were shadowed by an enemy submarine but a brave pilot from Nabob managed to get his aircraft off from the sloping deck and kept the submarine down while Nabob escaped.

HMS Nabob never entered service again in the Royal Navy and was paid off 30 September 1944. She was returned to US Navy on 16 March 1946.

Photos: © Robert W. Powers