Tag Archives: HMS Hood

Recovered HMS Hood Ensign Preserved

From the National Museum of the Royal Navy, Portsmouth:

On the eightieth anniversary of the sinking of HMS Hood, the museum has acquired a new acquisition with an association to the ship.

The flag came into the possession of Arthur George Parrot during the Second World War. A merchant seaman, he claimed to have picked it out of the debris floating in the water following the sinking of HMS Hood. For him, the flag was an item of special significance which he said represented all the boys he’d known from Winchester and Southampton who’d joined HMS Hood at the outbreak of war but did not survive.

The flag is currently in a fragile condition, it shows evidence of old repairs and many holes so it will require some attention to consolidate the fabric before it can be shared with visitors.

Notably, the NMRN also has Hood’s bell, recovered from her battered wreck in the Denmark Strait, conserved.

Hood’s bell rededicated 75 years after her sinking

Photographs by Christoper Ison, www.christopherison.com via Royal Navy

Photographs by Christoper Ison, http://www.christopherison.com via Royal Navy

“At mid-day precisely eight peels echoed around Victory Arena as Princess Anne rang the bell for the first time since May 24 1941 when Hood sailed to intercept Hitler’s flagship Bismarck and prevent it from breaking out into the Atlantic to maul British shipping,” reads the report from the Royal Navy.

The bell was recovered last year by a dive team from the battlecruiser’s resting place in the cold North Atlantic and spent the past nine months undergoing conservation work.

A 30-minute memorial service attended by members of the Hood Association, descendants of men who fought at Jutland – not least, three of the four senior admirals that day: Jellicoe, Beatty and Scheer – preceded the ringing, before the bell was escorted by a guard of honor through the historic dockyard to Boathouse No.5, home of the new exhibition 36 Hours: Jutland 1916, The Battle That Won The War.

Photographs by Christoper Ison, www.christopherison.com via Royal Navy

Photographs by Christoper Ison, http://www.christopherison.com via Royal Navy

HRH is the Chief Commandant for Women in the Navy.

HMS Hood, arriving

hms hood ensign 2015

After more than seven decades, the Royal Navy’s standard ‘flies’ once more on the Mighty Hood.

Two thousand eight hundred and forty-eight meters – 9,330ft, or a mile and three quarters – below the surface of the Denmark Strait, the White Ensign has been placed on the remains of the battlecruiser.

It took the robot submarine which ‘hoisted’ the flag more than two and a half hours to reach the warship’s wreck, the last resting place of 1,415 men killed when the Hood blew up in battle with Hitler’s flagship Bismarck in May 1941.

The ensign was placed close to the shattered bow of the Hood, which was the pride of the Navy and nation between the two world wars.

The ‘raising’ of the Navy’s standard on the wreck formed part of a three-pronged mission led by Microsoft founder and philanthropist Paul G Allen with deep-sea exploration experts Blue Water Recoveries – who found the Hood back in 2001.

Hood is an official war grave protected by the MOD, who gave special permission for Mr Allen to recover Hood’s bell so it can serve as a memorial to the ship’s crew in the Naval Museum in Portsmouth.

As part of the successful recovery of the bell, the underwater specialists promised to place a White Ensign and, if possible, clean a memorial plaque placed on a previous expedition.

The submersible was in the process of moving the plaque so it could be smartened up when bad weather on the surface forced the team to abandon the operation and bring the mini-sub back up.

Picture courtesy of Paul G Allen. Hattip Navy News

Hood’s bell saved, retrieved from Poseidon

HMS HoodNo shock was greater to the Royal Navy in WW2 than the loss of HMS Hood in a brief, brutal encounter with Hitler’s flagship Bismarck on May 24 1941.

The ship blew up, her magazines detonated by a German shell, and she sank in minutes, taking all but three of her 1,418 crew down with her. She remains the largest British warship lost and the Royal Navy’s heaviest loss of life in a single ship.

As Hood sank, the battlecruiser broke in two and debris, including the bell, was scattered around the sea bed.

The bell was mounted on a high wooden stand, which was kept on the warship’s quarterdeck in harbour and typically outside the captain’s quarters when at sea.

It was sounded by a Royal Marine to mark daily routine and watches on board, but would also be struck in the event of fire or other calamity aboard.

And now it has been saved.

hoods bell hood bell

Once restored – the conservation work is likely to take around 12 months – it will be reunited with the bell of HMS Prince of Wales, which took part in the same Denmark Strait action with the Bismarck but survived, only to be sunk at the end of the year by the Japanese in the South China Sea.

More here