Join veteran sailor Don Hitchcock for an interesting insight into life aboard a Naval Ship on convoy to Russia in 1944.
The Ship HMS Narbrough joined Escort Group (EG15) CO HMS Louis at Loch Ewe. This powerful Escort, made up of 30 Merchant ships, was to combat the Tirpitz, still in Northern waters, newly arrived aircraft spared by Goering and U boats no longer in the Atlantic. The Convoy sailed from Loch Ewe on the 20th October 1944, recieving fire from 18 U Boats upon their return.
"Throughout the voyage we were battered by gales, heavy seas and bitter cold. I was seasick 25 times one day, but still had to keep watch and when required take up my action station working on the plot to keep track of any U boat activity." - Don Hitchcock
Don left school at 18 and was directed to HMS Royal Arthur for induction to the Navy. He was selected to train as a coder at HMS Cabbala, later joining HMS Narbrough early in 1944. During his time on HMS Narborough Don served in convoys to Russia, as well as in Operation Neptune (D-Day Landings).
After the end of World War Two Don took up his place at Cambridge University studying Geography and qualifying as a teacher which became his career. Don later worked as a lecturer in Education. Don returned to Germany for 6 years to teach (BFES) in the late 1950s to early 1960s with his wife Mary and family. Don was initially attracted to return to work in the Plon area of Northern Germany which he had visited after the War, because of its wonderful bird life on the lakes of this area. Birdwatching has been one of Don’s main interests.