Saturday, October 20, 2007
After the Second Battle of Sirte
After the Italians were seen to retire, Admiral Vian headed south to meet the convoy. The convoy commander had already ordered the merchant ships to disperse, to prevent them from being sunk, en mass. Admiral Vian's Force B headed back to Alexandria. On the way, his destroyers suffered from the heavy weather. The merchant ships were escorted by the Hunt class destroyers, the cruiser Penelope, the destroyer Legion, the damaged Havock, and the destroyer Kingston. The Talabot and Pampas actually arrived in the Grand Harbour at Malta. They received "a tremendous welcome". The Breconshire was disabled about 8 miles from the Grand Harbour. Three destroyers stood by her. The Clan Campbell was sunk by air attack about 20 miles from Malta. The destroyer Legion was damaged and was beached. On 24 March 1942, the Hunt class destroyer was mined and sunk while standing by the Breconshire. Admiral Vian's force arrived at Alexandria about midday on 24 March. On 25 March, the Breconshire sank in shallow water off Marsa Scirocco, after being towed there in good weather. A good amount of oil was salvaged from the wreck. This is based on the account in Vol.III of the Official History.