HNoMS Svenner (G03)

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The S-class destroyer Svenner at Scapa Flow
United Kingdom
Name: Shark
Builder: Scotts, Greenock[1]
Laid down: 5 November 1941
Launched: 1 June 1943
Identification: pennant number G03
Fate: Transferred to Norway
Name: Svenner
Namesake: The island of Svenner
Commissioned: 11 March 1944
Fate: Sunk 6 June 1944
General characteristics
Class & type: S-class destroyer
Length: 362 ft 9 in (110.6 m) (o/a)
Beam: 35 ft 9 in (10.9 m)
Draught: 14 ft 6 in (4.4 m) (deep)
Installed power:
Propulsion: 2 × shafts; 2 × Parsons geared steam turbines
Speed: 36 knots (67 km/h; 41 mph)
Range: 4,675 nmi (8,658 km; 5,380 mi) at 20 knots (37 km/h; 23 mph)
Sensors and
processing systems:
  • Radar Type 290 air warning
  • Radar Type 285 ranging & bearing

HNoMS Svenner was a S-class destroyer built for the Royal Navy during the Second World War and loaned to exiled Royal Norwegian Navy. Svenner was sunk off Sword Beach, Normandy, at dawn on 6 June 1944, while supporting the British Army landings.


Svenner displaced 1,710 long tons (1,740 t) at standard load and 2,530 long tons (2,570 t) at deep load. She had an overall length of 362 feet 9 inches (110.6 m), a beam of 35 feet 8 inches (10.9 m) and a deep draught of 14 feet 6 inches (4.4 m). She was powered by two Parsons geared steam turbines, each driving one propeller shaft, using steam provided by two Admiralty three-drum boilers. The turbines developed a total of 40,000 shaft horsepower (30,000 kW) and gave a maximum speed of 36 knots (67 km/h; 41 mph). Svenner carried a maximum of 615 long tons (625 t) of fuel oil that gave her a range of 4,675 nautical miles (8,658 km; 5,380 mi) at 20 knots (37 km/h; 23 mph). Her complement was 170 officers and ratings.[2]

The ship was armed with four 45-calibre 4.7-inch (120 mm) Mark XII guns in dual-purpose mounts. For anti-aircraft (AA) defence, Svenner had one twin mount for Bofors 40 mm guns and four twin 20-millimetre (0.8 in) Oerlikon autocannon. She was fitted with two above-water quadruple mounts for 21-inch (533 mm) torpedoes. Two depth charge rails and four throwers were fitted for which 70 depth charges were provided.[3]

Construction and career

The ship was launched on 1 June 1943 as the Royal Navy ship HMS Shark (G03), but was rechristened HNoMS Svenner when she was commissioned in the Royal Norwegian Navy in 1944. The ship was hit by two torpedoes fired from one of two German T-boats, either Jaguar or Moewe of 5th Torpedo Flotilla operating out of Le Havre, that managed to get within firing range. Svenner was the only Allied ship to be sunk by German naval activity on the morning of 6 June. She was struck amidships, exploded, broke in two and sank very quickly. 32 Norwegian and one British crew were killed, 185 (15 wounded) were rescued from the crew of 219. (The book D-Day by Stephen Ambrose contains a photograph, in the 16 pages of photographs after page 160, of the moment that the Svenner blew up.)

The anchor from Svenner was recovered in 2003 and now forms 'The Svenner Memorial' at Sword Beach. The memorial can be found approximately 100 yards on the sea-side of the coast road at Hermanville-sur-Mer, Normandy, France.

See also


  1. on the S-class destroyers
  2. Lenton, p. 174
  3. English, pp. 62–63


  • Chesneau, Roger, ed. (1980). Conway's All the World's Fighting Ships 1922–1946. Greenwich, UK: Conway Maritime Press. ISBN 0-85177-146-7.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
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  • English, John (2001). Obdurate to Daring: British Fleet Destroyers 1941–45. Windsor, UK: World Ship Society. ISBN 978-0-9560769-0-8.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  • Lenton, H. T. (1998). British & Empire Warships of the Second World War. Annapolis, Maryland: Naval Institute Press. ISBN 1-55750-048-7.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  • Raven, Alan; Roberts, John (1978). War Built Destroyers O to Z Classes. London: Bivouac Books. ISBN 0-85680-010-4.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  • Whitley, M. J. (1988). Destroyers of World War 2. Annapolis, Maryland: Naval Institute Press. ISBN 0-87021-326-1.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>

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