SUBMARINES:  CHATHAM BUILT

HM Submarine E13

Laid down on 16 December 1912 E13 was launched on 22 September 1914 by Mrs Gaunt.

On 16th February 1915 E13 was sent to patrol around the Maas Light Vessel. When she arrived on station, the weather was so poor, she was forced to return home. During her return passage, she was identified and reported as a hostile submarine by the Great Eastern Railway Steamer Colchester.
In May 1915, E13 sailed from Harwich to patrol the German Coast. She sighted and attacked the Zeppelin L9. The Zeppelin then began to drop bombs and E13 had to dive. During the same patrol she sighted two German Fleet auxiliaries but no attack was made.
On 14 August 1915 E13 sailed for the Baltic under the command of Lt.Cmd. G. Layton.
The magnetic compass failed on the 18th August and before the course could be corrected she went aground off Saltholm.
Early on the 19th August , a Danish Torpedo Boat arrived and gave Lt. Cmd. Layton 24 hours to move or be interned. One of the boats officers left with the Danes to visit their Guardship.
Later that morning, a German Destroyer arrived but left soon after two Danish ships came into view.
By mid morning two German Destroyers arrived and one of them attacked E13 despite the Danish Guard boats presence.
When E13's crew dived into the water to swim to the Danish ship, they were fired on by the German destroyer. This was only stopped when the Dane's manoeuvred their ship between E13 and the German destroyer. Both German ships then sailed away.
E13 had been hit with four German shells. Fifteen of E13's crew were killed in the action. Their bodies were returned to the UK by the merchant ship Vidar. The remainder of the crew were interned by the Danes. Lt Cmd Layton and his first Lieutenant escaped back to England.
E13 was taken into Copenhagen Harbour where she was later sold to the Danish authorities.



 


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