Flower Class Corvette





Laid down: 17 Apr 1940

Launched: 12 Sep 1940

Commissioned: 23 Jan 1941

Transferred to RCN: 15 May 1941

Commissioned: 15 May 1941

Paid off: 22 Jun 1945

Returned to RN: 22 Jun 1945

Fate: Broken up at Rosyth in 1946


Built at Sorel for the RN, she was launched on 12 Sep 1940. BITTERSWEET was towed to Liverpool, N.S. for completion so as not to be icebound. She was commissioned 23 Jan 1941 at Halifax as HMS BITTERSWEET K182. On 05 Mar 1941 left with convoy HX.113 for the Tyne. There, from 01 Apr 1941 to 06 Jun 1941, the finishing touches were carried out. During this refit, on 15 May 1941, she was transferred to the RCN and commissioned as HMCS BITTERSWEET K182. After working up at Tobermory she left for Iceland on 27 Jun 1941, having been assigned to Newfoundland Command. She was continuously employed as an ocean escort until 31 Dec 1941, when she arrived at Charleston, S.C., for refit, resuming her duties in Mar 1942. BITTERSWEET served with EG C-5 and C-3 until Oct 1943, one of her most strenuous convoys being ONS.192, which lost seven ships. She underwent refit at Baltimore, Md., from Oct 1943 to Nov 1943, which included the extension of her fo'c's'le, then proceeded to Pictou to work up. She then resumed her convoy duties, leaving Londonderry late in Oct 1944 to join her last convoy, ON.262. Upon arriving in Canada she went to Pictou to commence a refit that was completed at Halifax 10 Feb 1945. She was then assigned briefly to Halifax Force before transferring in April to Sydney Force, with which she remained until the end of the war. She was paid off and returned to the RN at Aberdeen on 22 Jun 1945, and broken up at Rosyth the following year.


(Note: Although the place & date of fo'c's'le extension for HMCS BITTERSWEET K182 as listed on 09 Nov 43, at Baltimore, MD, was obtained from official records, photographic evidence seems to prove this wrong. It is more likely that BITTERSWEET's fo'c's'le extension was completed between Dec 1941, & May 1942 at Charleston, SC. Source: RCN News Magazine)




Photos and Documents


My father, James Ronald Corbett served on the HMCS BITTERSWEET K-182. I have written a tribute song to honour him and all the many sailors who served - Rod Corbett

BITTERSWEET song (m4a format)

Lyrics and cords (pdf)


Commanding Officers


A/LCdr John Andrew Woods, RNVR - 01 Apr 1941 - 30 Nov 1942

LCdr Frederick Bancroft Brooks-Hill, RCNVR - 01 Dec 1942 - 09 Jul 1944

Lt Frederick Wilson Bogardus, RCNVR - 10 Jul 1944 - 07 Dec 1944

Skpr/Lt Frank Chalmers Smith, RCNVR - 17 Dec 1944 - 22 Jun 1945



     In memory of those who made the ultimate sacrifice    

     Lest We Forget     


ANSLEY, William C.


died - 05 Jan 1942

MILLER, Lloyd K.


killed - 20 Feb 1943



     In memory of those who have crossed the bar    

They shall not be forgotten




Former Crew Members


Finlay, Arthur Murray, Lt, RCNVR - 16 Feb 1944


Jeffries, Peter Parnell, Lt, RCNVR


Kingsmill, Walter Juchereau, Lt, RCNVR - 23 Jan 1941 / 06 Jun 1941


McMeekin, D.S. - Dec 1940

Ovenden, Hedley Allen, Mate, RCNR - 25 Jun 1941


Pare, Charles, Lt, RCNVR - 15 Feb 1944


Ronson, John Clifton, Lt, RCNVR - Jan 1945


Sharpe, John Winston, Ch/Skpr, RCNR - Jan 1941

Smitherman, James William, Stoker 


Sullivan, Joseph Edgar, SLt, RCNVR - 30 Jul 1942


Warren, Donald Cameron, Lt, RCNVR - 16 Feb 1944


Welch, Arnold Philip, Lt, RCNVR - 05 Feb 1945



Photos and Documents





BTR004 / SF05


(BTR002) HMCS BITTERSWEET's gunshield art  //  Credit: Library and Archives of Canada

(BTR003) HMCS BITTERSWEET K182, St. John's, Newfoundland  //  From the collection of PO James McLaren  //  Courtesy of Catriona Linton

(BTR004) HMCS ORANGEVILLE K491, HMCS BITTERSWEET K182 and HMCS KAMLOOPS K176  //  Photo taken from HMCS BROCKVILLE J270  //  From the collection of Sylvio Fournier  //  Courtesy of Steve Fournier








(HM03) Gunner, HMCS BITTERSWEET'S mascot

(HM04) HMCS BITTERSWEET preparing to be towed by HMCS SKEENA, May, 1943.  The light line has just been passed in order to pass the heavy tow line

(HM05) HMCS BITTERSWEET'S depth charge rails

(HM06-HM07) HMCS BITTERSWEET'S Starboard (top photo) and Port (bottom photo) depth charge throwers







(HM06) HMCS BITTERSWEET, aft, looking forward

(HM07) HMCS BITTERSWEET at sea.  Port side looking forward

(HM08) HMCS BITTERSWEET leaving St. John's Nfld

(HM09) HMCS BITTERSWEET in the North Atlantic.  Note the missile rack and hedgehog

(RM10) HMCS BITTERSWEET in the North Atlantic.  Stbd side aft, looking forward



(RM11) Sailors on HMCS BITTERSWEET.  L-R: Flowers, Pony, Bailey, Unknown

From the collection of Howard Ross Maize, L/Sto, RCNVR

Courtesy of Wayne Maize