HMS Woodcock

On July 5th 2013, in an auction, was  lot 24 - the navigation lights of HMS Woodcock. Sadly the cost was beyond me otherwise I would have bid for them.

From Patricia Turner. My father Ben Turner was a member of CWOBA (Captain Walkers Old Boys Association) having served on HMS Woodcock. He attended many of the re-unions up in Bootle and kept in contact with many members, although sadly as age took its toll the numbers reduced in recent years. Sadly dad passed away on June 6th but right up to the end he was still a Royal Navy man and was so proud to have served with all his shipmates. At a sad moment for us its good to reflect on a time that was so important to Dad and tremendous efforts and sacrifices that so many of the brave lads made. Dad last journey was made with his coffin covered with the White Ensign, 'Heart of Oak' pounding out across the English Countryside and a chest full of medals in the place of honour with the Atlantic star sitting proudest of all. Please carry on with your fantastic work in keeping the memory of the Fighting Captain and his superb, loyal, brave and dedicated men. I'm so proud of my Dad and all those that served. Pat Turner. (mike: sadly another brave lad gone over the bar, and his distinct and unique memories go with him. All to common at this time, so long after the war. RIP Ben, a hero who served with heroes).

HMS Woodcock, built by Fairfield, Govan, laid down on 21 October 1941, launched on 26 November 1942, and completed 29 May 1943. On completion joined the 2nd Support Group and operated in the Atlantic until May 1944 sinking U-226 on 06-Nov-1943. She then moved to the Channel May-1944 intended to take part in the Normandy landings. However she collided with the destroyer HMS Venus, on 27-May-1944 and repairs took until Dec-1945. The work included changes to fit her for service in the Pacific and she joined the pacific Fleet at Manus 05-Mar-1945. Sold for breaking up November 1955. Present in Tokyo Bay on Victory over Japan Day (2 September 1945) when the Japanese Instrument of Surrender was signed on board the battleship USS Missouri (BB-63).  Se was the fifth Royal Naval vessel to carry this name.

Remained n the Pacific until late 1946 when she returned to the UK to be put into reserve.

Propulsion: steam, geared turbines, 2 shafts, 3600 shp, 19.25 knots
Launched: Thursday, 26/11/1942
Built: 1942
Ship Type: Modified Black Swan Sloop
Ship's Role: Black Swan class
Tonnage: 1300 tons disp
Length: 283 feet
Owner History: Royal Navy
Status: Arrived for Scrapping - 28/11/1955 Scrapped at Rosyth having been in reserve at West Hartlepool since 1954.

 Walker Statue on Pier Head Liverpool

These two images above are of Ben Turner and his shipmates on board HMS Woodcock and of Ben in later years with his beloved grand children.
Thank You Pat for these images * Last updated: by Brian Hargreaves from the original records by Stuart Cameron

*Wikipedia should not be taken as 100% correct as all articles are written by 'contributors', members of the public. Indeed, I wrote the article on HMS Kite.
Wikipedia do try to ascertain if an item is true but holds no guarantees.

Email: June 27 2011: My father – Bob (John Robert) Davis – who served with Ben Turner on HMS Woodcock. Dad attended Ben’s funeral last week with my mother – they have been friends with Ben and his wife Rose ever since the War and I and my family were pleased to meet them on several occasions – notably in Jersey last year for the Captain Walker’s reunion and also at the 60th anniversary celebrations in Russia. Patricia Brooks