Dundee International Submarine Memorial

Located between the Victoria Docks and Camperdown Dock within Dundee Harbour, the Dundee International Submarine Memorial "Still on Patrol" commemorates the six submarines, and 296 sailors and commandos, lost during World War II, having sailed from the submarine base on the Firth of Tay.

The memorial was dedicated on 17th September 2009 in the presence of the Duke of Gloucester. It comprises a main vertical slab cut with the silhouettes of the lost submarines, seven subsidiary slabs recording the names of the men who were lost, all carved in limestone from Kilkenny in Ireland, together with seating in limestone and oak provided to allow visitors time for reflection. The memorial was the work of Paul Grime (b.1956) and Jeremy Cunningham, commissioned by Dundee City Council and funded by Unicorn Properties, developers of City Quay.

Dundee became Scotland's first submarine base in 1909, home to the 7th Submarine Flotilla, which operated until the submarines were transferred to Rosyth in 1914. Between 1939 and 1945, Dundee became home to a submarine shore station, HMS Ambrose. Stationed here were the Royal Navy’s 2nd Submarine Flotilla and the 9th Submarine Flotilla, a unique force of British, Dutch, Free French, Norwegian and Polish crews. Russian submarines also operated from here in the summer of 1944.

Dundee-based submarines patrolled the coastline of mainland Europe, intercepting German convoys and U-boats, and protecting Arctic convoys that were supplying the Soviet Union. They also laid mines, transported agents and commandos on secret missions behind enemy lines, delivered supplies and weapons to support the resistance in Norway. HMS Clyde was based in Dundee when she attacked and damaged the German battleship Gneisenau.

The six lost submarines were HMS Oxley (1939), HMS Thames (1940), the Royal Netherlands Navy O-13 and O-22 (1940), the Royal Norwegian Navy Uredd (1943) and the Soviet B-1 / V-1 (1944), which was one of four submarines transferred by the Royal Navy to the Soviet Navy in Dundee in July 1944 and on route to its new base in Murmansk. Sadly two of these losses were due to friendly fire incidents.

Also commemorated by the memorial are a seaman lost overboard from the French submarine Rubis in 1941, which was based in Dundee, and eight commandos, one fatally-injured and seven executed, after taking part in Operation Musketoon in Norway. They had been conveyed to their target by a Dundee-based submarine.

Before the First World War, six submariners from the 7th Submarine Flotilla based in Dundee were buried in the city's Eastern Cemetery.

On 9th May 2015, wreaths were laid by the Consul General of the Russian Federation in Edinburgh, Andrey Pritsepov, and the Lord Provost of Dundee, Robert Duncan, to commemorate the 70th Anniversary of victory in the Second World War (or in Russia, the Great Patriotic War).

Use the tabs on the right of this page to see other parts of this entry arrow

If you have found this information useful please consider making
a donation to help maintain and improve this resource. More info...

By using our site you agree to accept cookies, which help us serve you better