Flower Class Corvette



Chambly's gunshield art

circa Dec 1941 - Feb 1942


Source: Department of National Defence / National Archives of Canada, PA-105255.


Laid down: 20 Feb 1940

Launched: 29 Jul 1940

Commissioned: 18 Dec 1940

Paid off: 20 Jun 1945

Fate: Sold in 1946 for commercial use. Broken up in 1966


Commissioned at Quebec City on 18 Dec 1940, CHAMBLY arrived at Halifax on 24 Dec 1940. After working up she joined Halifax Force, and on 23 May 1941, left Halifax as on of the original seven corvettes forming NEF. She served continuously as on ocean escort between St. John's and Iceland until 08 Dec 1941 when she returned to Halifax for refit. During this period she took part in two major convoy battles: HX.133 (Jun 1941), which lost 18. In the latter case she had left St. John's on 05 Sep 1941 with MOOSE JAW for exercises, and when SC.42 came under attack, they received permission to join the convoy off Greenland in support. Just before joining on 10 Sep 1941 they came upon U 501 trailing the convoy, and sank her. CHAMBLY served as a mid-ocean escort to Iceland for the balance of 1941, then underwent repairs at Halifax from 08 Dec 1941 to 22 Feb 1942. She then made a round trip to Londonderry as an escort in Mar 1942 and, on her return to St. John's on 28 Mar 1942, was based there to reinforce ocean escorts in the western Atlantic, doubling as a training ship. 


On 11 Jun 1942 S.S. PONTYPRIDD was torpedoed and sunk by German submarine U-94 while en route from Immingham to Sydney in ballast, and a straggler in Convoy ONS-100. Two crew were lost. The master was taken prisoner by U-569 and was taken to POW camp Milag Nord. 42 crew members and three gunners were picked up by HMCS CHAMBLY and landed at St. John's.


In Sep 1942 she resumed regular mid-ocean escort duties, with time out for refit at Liverpool, N.S., from 26 Nov 1942 to 13 Feb 1943. From Mar to Aug 1943, she was a member of EG C-2, then briefly joined the newly formed EG 9 at St. John's and, in Sep 1943, EG 5. In Dec 1942 she returned to Liverpool, N.S. for three months' refit, including fo'c's'le extension.  After workups in St. Margaret's Bay she resumed mid-ocean duties, the time with C-1, until her final departure from Londonderry on 11 Mar 1945. She was refitting at Louisbourg when the war ended, and was paid off and laid up at Sorel on 20 Jun 1945. Sold in 1946 for conversion to a whale-catcher, she entered service in 1952 under the Dutch flag as Sonja Vinke, and was broken up at Santander, Spain, in 1966.


U-Boats Sunk:  U-501 sunk on 10 Sep 1941 by HMCS CHAMBLY K116 and HMCS MOOSE JAW K164 in position 62-50 N, 37-50 W



Photos and Documents          Ship's company photos          Battle for Convoy HX-133



Commanding Officers


A/LCdr F.C. Smith, RCNR - 18 Dec 1940 - 25 Mar 1941

Cdr James Douglas Prentice, RCN - 26 Mar 1941 - 13 Nov 1942

A/LCdr Antony Fenwick Pickard, RCNR - 14 Nov 1942 - 26 Jan 1944

Lt Stephen Dalrymple Taylor, RCNR - 27 Jan 1944 - 22 Jun 1944

Lt Hedley Allen Ovenden, RCNR - 23 Jun 1944 - 20 Jul 1944

A/LCdr Stephen Dalrymple Taylor, RCNR - 21 Jul 1944 - 13 May 1945

LCdr John Bertrand Brunswick Shaw, RCNVR - 14 May 1945 - 20 Jun 1945



     In memory of those who made the ultimate sacrifice    

     Lest We Forget     


BROWN, William I.

Sto 1c, RNCR

MPK - 10 Sep 1941



died - 19 Mar 1944



     In memory of those who have crossed the bar    

They shall not be forgotten




Former Crew Members


Adams, Butch, LS - 1943

Armstrong, T.W., LS - 1943

Bain, E. - 1943

Banks, D., LS - 1943

Barnett, J.A., ERA - 1943

Bayne, J. HSD - 1943

Bears, W., AB - 1943

Berry, Gordon, RDF1 - 1943

Bonner, A.L., Yeoman - 1943

Brophy, M., Coder - 1943

Cale (sp?), L, STWD - 1943

Carey, H.D., L/Tel - 1943

Chapman, R.J. - 1943

Churchill, H. George, Coder - 1943

Clark, S., SPO - 1943

Clark, T., S/KS - 1943

Connor, George O., OS - 1943

Conrad, C., L/CK - 1943


Cunningham, John Ritchie, Slt, RCNVR - 08 Jun 1942


Denver, J., OS - 1943


Dow, Al


Durrant, Douglas Trevor 


Evans, C., LS - 1943

Evans, W.J. - 1943


Fairlie, John Neil, Lt, RCNVR - 14 Feb 1944


George, A (??) - 1943

Gladstone, R., AB - 1943

Grant, Donald Alexander, LCdr, RCNVR - 14 Apr 1941


Grant, J., AB - 1943


Greenless, W., AB


Guindon, Andre Laurent, SLt, RCNVR - Jan 1944


Harding, W.L, A/CPO - 1943


Hay, Ian MacLachlan, SLt, RCNVR - Jan 1943


Hazelwood, W. - 1943


Holgate, Gordon Philip, Slt, RCNVR - 29 Apr 1942


Hillock, J.H., OS - 1943

Hooley, K., AB - 1943

Idington, J., Coder - 1943


Ingraham, Donald Robson, SLt, RCNVR - Jan 1943


Jackman, William Stephen, Lt, RCNVR - 13 Apr 1944 / 13 Apr 1945


James, Ken, LS - 1943

Jull, G.H., Sig - 1943

Kersey, D., SD - 1943

Lalonde, A.J., CERA - 1943

Larzell (sp?), W., ERA - 1943

Lawrence, S.G., AB - 1943


Leckie, Gordon Wallace, Lt, RCNVR - 12 Feb 1944


LeClair, R.J. - 1943

Legault, R., AB - 1943

Legault, R., Tel - 1943


Lehtu, I.P., AB - 1941


Lewis, L/Writer - 1943


Madden, James Ernest, Slt, RCNVR - 09 Apr 1945


MacDonald, David - 1943

MacKenzie, J. - 1943

Mathews, Harry - 1943


O'Toole, Cyril (Cy)


Page, E. - 1943


Pemberton, Francis John Dupont, Lt, RCNVR - Jan 1942


Penning, B., Sig - 1943

Pullen, John H., Sto - 1943

Rankin, A. - 1943

Robertson, L., SD - 1943

Roper, R. - 1943


Ryerson, Donald Egerton, Lt, RCNVR - Jan 1942


Scott, S. - 1943

Selon, Murry - 1943

Sirvak (sp?), R., AB - 1943

Sivel, A.E., L/Sto - 1943

Smith, E.J., AB - 1943


Spence, William, DSM., CERA - 1941


Sproston, J., LS - 1943


Stuhr, George Ernest, A/War (E), RCNVR - 25 Feb 1944


Sullivan, F., O/Tel - 1943

Sutherland, AB - 1943


Sweatman, Henry Cowly, SLt, RCNVR - 28 Jul 1944


Tobin, Hugh E., Sig - 1941


Townseny - 1943

Vickery, F.N., SBA - 1943

Walker, J.S., Tel - 1943

Williams, E., AB - 1943



Photos and Documents



CHM002 / TC24


CHM004 / EM023

CHM005 / EM024

(CHM001) HMCS CHAMBLY K116 - VE Day 1945 at Louisbourg N.S. Canada, under going repairs as the war ended  //  Photographer: Celia LeDrew  //  Courtesy of Gary LeDrew

(CHM002) HMCS CHAMBLY K116  //  From the collection of Tom Coyle, Sto 1c, RCNVR  //  Courtesy of Elaine Desnoyers

(CHM003) MV Sonja Vinke former HMCS CHAMBLY K116  //  Source: Flickr photo collection of Ron Bell

(CHM004 - CHM005) Unidentified sailors on HMCS CHAMBLY - ship identified by gunshield art  //  From the collection of AB Elvin Raymond McLean, RCN  //  Courtesy of Alan Soderstrom







(CHM006) Article on the sinking of U-501 by HMCS CHAMBLY  //  Sailors mentioned in the article:  Tel George Churchill;  Tel Terence Wheeler; AB John Warr; AB Joe Kolino, all of Montreal and Tel Richard Bristow of Victoria; LS Leo Letho of Sioux Lookout; Torpedoman S. Moyle of Toronto; and AB W. Greenless of Regina; Sig Tobin (of Montreal and Hamilton)

(CHM007) Mate A. F. Pickard and Chief Engine Room Artificer W. Spence, St. John’s, Newfoundland, 1942. The two men played key roles in the corvette HMCS CHAMLEY'S sinking of the German submarine U-501 on September 10, 1941. This was the Royal Canadian Navy's first confirmed submarine sinking of WW 2. Pickard received a Mention in Despatches and Spence received a Distinguished Service Medal for their actions. Location: St. John's, Newfoundland, Source: Library and Archives Canada / PA-204345









(JA07) Two newspaper articles on Lt. John Allan, DSC

(JA07) Newspaper article on awards earned after the sinking of U-501 by Lt John Allan and other crew of HMCS CHAMBLY

(JA08) Two Winnipeggers Tell of Sinking of Nazi Sub

(JA09) McLean's Magazine article on Cdr Prentice and Lt Allan

From the collection of John Allan, LCdr, RCNVR / RCN(R)

Courtesy of Patricia Allan Strowbridge







(AJ06) Autographs from survivors of U-501 picked up by HMCS CHAMBLY K116 with notes from HSD Alfred Johnson

(AJ08) HMCS CHAMBLY match book

From the collection of PO Alfred H. B. Johnson, RCN / RN

Courtesy of Robert Johnson






(HB02) Harold Branch by the gun mount on HMCS CHAMBLY K116


From the collection of Sto 1c Harold Branch, RCNVR

Courtesy of Trevor Cameron








(WR02-WR06) Articles on the sinking of U-501

The RCN'S first submarine kill of the Second World War




(WR07-WR08) Articles on the sinking of U-501

The RCN'S first submarine kill of the Second World War

From the collection of Walter Richardson, RCNVR

Courtesy of Shawn Richardson