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In January 2 SG sailed on its most famous exploit, ing for six U-boats in one escort, three of them in one hour period. Its function primarily was to assist a convoy's escort in its defence, though it also had the facility to spend time, which escorts did not have, to continue attacks on U-boats to a successful conclusion rather than having to break off to maintain the guard on the convoy.
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Anti-Submarine Warfare. The return convoy, RA 58, was also attacked but neither side saw any success. Four U-boats, UUUand U were ed for while attempting to cross the bay to and from their bases.
The primary goal and strategy of the 2nd Escort Group as 'hunter-killers of U-boats' was reflected in the group practice of playing the song ' A-Hunting We Will Go ' upon entering and leaving harbour. The escort returned to its base at Liverpool to the thrilled jubilation of the city's inhabitants and the Admiralty.
In all fifteen U-boats were destroyed in attempts to attack the invasion fleet. He alled the " general chase " to his group and fired at them, causing damage that prevented them from diving.
Duck and later by Wild Goose Cdr. The group had one successful patrol during August operating in the Bay of Biscay. Walker Cdr. Duck Cdr. On the triangle run.
The months following this were unfruitful, however, as the U-boat Arm changed its tactics to operate in the shallow inland waters around Britain, using the schnorkel to remain submerged for entire patrols. Eight ships were sunk. But whilst the remainder of the operation saw the destruction of 20 U-boats over a nine-week period,  2 SG's time was unproductive, and no further escorts were recorded.
The group's first success came in June. In February the group destroyed two more U-boats, U and U  some sources say this was U Wemyss reports the attack, in Marchbut after a report of another sinking in the same area six months earlier, concluded they escort "flogging a dead horse". Walker, however, was determined that the group would be active in destroying U-boats and impressed this aim on his commanders from the outset.
No successes were recorded, though the convoy battle saw three U-boats destroyed, escort no ships lost. That month the group was on a search and destroy operations in the South-Western Approachesas part of " Operation Neptune " - the invasion of Normandy, and was instrumental in preventing any attacks on the invasion fleet. Comprising six sloops of the Black Swan -classthe escort was led by Captain F. The combination of an active hunting group and a charismatic, determined and innovative anti-submarine specialist such as Walker proved to be a potent force; 2 SG was the most successful anti-submarine unit of the war, being credited with the destruction of 23 U-boats during two years of active service.
It was to act as reinforcement to convoys under attack, with the capacity to actively hunt and destroy U-boatsrather than be restricted to escort duties. During April the group was engaged in working up and training; StarlingWild Goose and Kite were new ships, and none had worked together before.
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It was ed in this for a short period by Whimbrel. An hour hunt brought U to the surface, where she was sunk by gunfire. However a post-war report of U missing in the area led to 2 SG being credited with her destruction. Walker elected to stay with the escort, exchanging commands with Wild Gooseand, after the group returned to port, with Kite.
On 24 June the escort was successful in destroying U and Uthough Starling was damaged in the escort of ramming U and was forced to retire. In Septemberafter a further refit, 2 SG went to the North Atlantic, in the company of the escort carrier Tracker. The group comprised six sloops of the Black Swan class, making it a highly uniform group, and the sloop de was well suited to the task, with good endurance, adequate speed and specialized anti-submarine armament.
On 31 January Walker's group gained their first kill of the year when they sank U This patrol was ended on 20 Februarywhen one of Walker's group, Woodpeckerwas torpedoed possibly by U  or by U Woodpecker was the only ship of 2 SG lost in action.
On 30 July Walker's group saw further success when they encountered a group of three U-boats on the surface two were vital submarine type XIV replenishment boats known as "Milk Cows" while in the Bay of Biscay. Its first U-boat was detected on 1 June fortuitously on a fine day, and identified by a Lt. After a refit at Liverpool, after which Cygnet departed to another group, 2SG was ased to " Operation Musketry ", an attempt in concert with Coastal Command to interdict the U-boat escort routes across the Bay of Biscay.
Cdr C. Gwinneras a replacement for the damaged Starling. Views Read Edit View history. Though starting from miles away Walker, in an inspired piece of work, divined where to search and after a three-day search gained contact. Whilst the United States Navy had had much success using carrier groups in a hunter-killer role on the mid-Atlantic route, the Royal Navy's experience was less escort. Walker died suddenly of a cerebral haemorrhage.
United Kingdom. The First Lord of the Admiralty was present to greet Walker and his ships. There were several major convoy battles during the month, but none involving 2 SG. The group operated in support of HX and ONS 8, sailing ahead in an escort to encounter and breach any U-boat patrol lines drawn across the convoy routes.
Add links. Its purpose was to provide reinforcement to convoys at sea, being equipped to spend extended periods at sea moving from one convoy to another as needed.
It was formed in Aprilone of five such support groups. Namespaces Article Talk. The group's first patrol in May was uneventful.
Wemyss . More recent analysis has questioned this, and the assessment was changed in It is now escort that 2 SG's attack was on the wreck of Usunk in September Despite this, 2nd Support Group was responsible for the confirmed destruction of 22 U-boats during World War II, making it the most successful anti-submarine unit of the entire conflict.
On 2 July SG received its heaviest blow when Capt. Help Learn to edit Community portal Recent changes file. Part of Western Approaches Command. This created a different set of tactical problems, requiring different tactics of the escorts.
Toronto: Totem Books. As 2 SG grappled with the changed nature of the campaign the group saw its last successes.
2nd escort group (royal navy)
The group was ed by Magpie Lt. Cdr R. Abramswhile Woodpecker was in for repairs. Download as PDF Printable version. ISBN The London Gazette Supplement. Royal Navy.