Key WWII events - May 1940

German invasion of the Netherlands, Belgium & France
Winston Churchill replaces Neville Chamberlain as Prime Minister of Great Britain
Start of 'Operation Dynamo' Evacuation of Dunkirk
British warship Weston captured some Enigma rotors & operating instructions from sinking German submarine U-13

Image of British cruiser Effingham in Norwegian waters May 1940

British cruiser Effingham in Norwegian waters

Axis May-40 Allied
german flag Total Class Total british flag France flag canada flag australia flag new zealand flag poland flag norway flag
2 2 Battleships 16 11 5 0 0 0 0 0
0 0 Fleet Carriers 2 2 0 0 0 0 0 0
0 0 Light Carriers 2 2 0 0 0 0 0 0
0 0 Heavy Cruisers 18 9 7 0 2 0 0 0
2 2 Light Cruisers 53 37 11 0 4 1 0 0
26 26 Destroyers 232 158 56 6 5 0 3 4
44 44 Submarines 132 56 72 0 0 0 2 2
0 0 Escort Carriers 2 1 1 0 0 0 0 0
11 11 Escorts 88 47 38 0 3 0 0 0
7 7 Other 58 52 2 1 3 0 0 0

 

 

Class USA flag japan flag italy flag soviet flag argentina flag brazil flag chile flag columbia flag peru flag netherlands flag denmark flag sweden flag portugal flag spain flag yugo flag greece flag turkey flag Romania flag thailand flag
Battleships 15 10 2 2 2 1 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 0
Fleet Carriers 5 4 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Light Carriers 0 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Heavy Cruisers 18 17 7 2 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 1 0 0 0
Light Cruisers 19 17 14 3 1 2 0 0 0 4 0 1 0 5 1 1 0 0 0
Destroyers 192 87 90 50 16 7 8 2 2 8 0 16 5 16 9 19 4 7 10
Submarines 61 51 107 172 3 4 9 0 4 20 8 16 4 4 4 6 7 1 4
Escort Carriers 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Escorts 0 23 34 18 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 2 4 0
Other 0 0 0 0 6 0 3 0 0 0 2 7 0 0 0 0 0 0 4

 

 

Allied and Axis Naval Losses

Contains the lost and damaged (and therefore out of action) warships by country.
These are changes that happen during the month and figures will be reflected in the following month's tables.

Allied Losses

british flag Lost Report
Effingham Cruiser Stranded on rock outcrop of Faksen shoal W of Bobo during passage between Harstad & Bobo whilst taking a short cut 67.17N 13.58E 18/05/1940. Scuttled by gunfire & torpedoes from British warship Matabele 21/05/1940
Curlew Cruiser Bombed by German Ju-88 aircraft off Skutenes, Lavang Fjord, Norway 67.32N 16.37E 26/05/1940
Afridi Destroyer Bombed by German Ju-87 dive-bomber aircraft off Namsos, in the Norwegian Sea ship capsized & sank, 66.14N 05.45E 03/05/1940
Grafton Destroyer Damaged by torpedo from German submarine U-62, in the English Channel, whilst rescuing survivors of torpedoed British warship Wakeful. Though the ship's back was broken, she stayed afloat so crew & troops could be rescued. Wreck was sunk by British warship Ivanhoe during Operation Dynamo, 4 dead 29/05/1940
Grenade Destroyer Damaged by 3 bombs from German aircraft at East Pier, Dunkirk, during Operation Dynamo, ship caught fire & had to be abandoned, when fire reached magazine the ship blew up 29/05/1940
Valentine Destroyer Damaged by 2 bombs from German Ju 88 dive-bomber aircraft, in mouth of Schelde near Terneuzen, ship's boiler blew up, she was run aground & abandoned, 31 dead, 21 injured 15/05/1940
Wakeful Destroyer Torpedoed by German E-boat S-30 N of Nieuport during Operation Dynamo, ship hit in forward torpedo room, ship split in half with the forward part sinking immediately, of the crew 84 dead, 26 survived, of the troops embarked 639 dead, 1 survivor, 51.22N 02.43E 29/05/1940 Capsized wreck shelled & depth charged by British warship Sheldrake 30/05/1940
Wessex Destroyer Bombed by 3 German Ju 87 Stuka dive-bomber aircraft off Calais, ship sank quickly 51.00N 01.48E 25/05/1940
Whitley Destroyer Damaged by bombs from German Ju 87 Stuka dive-bomber aircraft 2 miles off Nieuport, ship beached near Nieuport 51.11N 02.04E. Ship shelled to destruction by British warship Keith 19/05/1940
Seal Submarine Damaged by a German mine in the Skagerrak. Boat managed to return to the surface, but was unable to dive & her rudder was damaged. She tried to make for the Swedish coast, but was spotted by a German Arado Ar 196 seaplanes & captured by German anti-submarine trawlers UJ-128 05/05/1940
Damaged Report
Resolution Battleship Damaged by bomb from German aircraft, whilst at anchor off Tjeldsundet, 30 miles W of Narvik, 250 Ibs armour piercing bomb landed between X & Y turrets, damage repaired by crew & ship remained operational 16/05/1940. Withdrawn for repair 18/05/1940
Aurora Cruiser Damaged by bombs from German aircraft of Norwegian coast, knocking out 2 turrets 07/05/1940. Withdrawn from service 13/05/1940
Anthony Destroyer Damaged by bomb near miss from German aircraft off Dunkirk, during Operation Dynamo 30/05/1940. Arrived for repair at Portsmouth 31/05/1940
Somali Destroyer Damaged by bombs from German aircraft, during passage to Mo, Norway, during Norwegian Campaign 14/05/1940. Damaged by near miss from bombs from German aircraft, in Traen Fjord, Norway 15/05/1940. Withdrawn for repair at Liverpool 19/05/1940
Maori Destroyer Damaged by bomb near miss from German aircraft, off Namsos, during evacuation of Namsos, damage to ship's upper works, 5 dead, 15 injured 02/05/1940
Kelly Destroyer Damaged by torpedo from German E-boat S 21, in the North Sea, torpedo hit below bridge flooding boiler rooms & disabling ship, 27 dead 09/05/1940. Ship taken in tow by British warship Bulldog, arrived for repair River Tyne 13/05/1940
Jaguar Destroyer Damaged by bombs that sank British warship Grenade Dunkirk harbour during Operation Dynamo, later disabled by shock from a near miss from bombs by German aircraft on way to Dover, regained power arrived safely 29/05/1940
Mackay Destroyer Damaged in collision with British warship Montrose off Dunkirk during Operation Dynamo, ship grounded damaging her propellers 28/05/1940
Faulknor Destroyer Damaged when ship struck underwater wreck in Rombaksfjord, Norway, whilst rescuing survivors of Polish warship Grom. Her ASDIC Dome and Directing Gear 05/05/1940. Arrived Grimsby for repair 13/05/1940
Express Destroyer Damaged by bombs from German aircraft off Dunkirk during Operation Dynamo, ship sustained serious damage 31/05/1940
Greyhound Destroyer Damaged by bombs from German aircraft between Dunkirk & Dover during Operation Dynamo, ship towed back by Polish warship Blyskawica 30/05/1940
Gallant Destroyer Damaged by near miss from bombs dropped by German aircraft off Dunkirk during Operation Dynamo 29/05/1940
Isis Destroyer Damaged in collision with wreck in Balagan Fjord, during the Battle for Norway. Ship's propellers were both damaged 08/05/1940. Towed to UK for repair 15/05/1940
Intrepid Destroyer Damaged by bombs from German aircraft at Dunkirk during Operation Dynamo 30/05/1940
Brazen Destroyer Damaged hitting submerged rock off the Wash causing serious structural damage 30/05/1940
Brilliant Destroyer Damaged in collision with British warship Boreas, off the Hook of Holland, during the operation to evacuate refugees from Netherlands 15/05/1940. Arrived Sheerness for repair 16/05/1940
Bulldog Destroyer Damaged in collision with under water obstruction off Dunkirk during Operation Dynamo, ship's propellers damaged 27/05/1940
Vimiera Destroyer Damaged by near misses from 6 bombs from German Ju 87 Stuka dive-bomber aircraft off Calais during Operation Dynamo, ship was rescuing the crew of British warship Wessex 51.00N 01.48E 25/05/1940
Wolfhound Destroyer Damaged by bombs from German aircraft off Dunkirk during Operation Dynamo, ship's back was broken, but she was towed back to Chatham for repair 29/05/1940
Venetia Destroyer Damaged by gunfire from German captured French shore batteries, forward part of the ship set on fire 23/05/1940
Vimy Destroyer Damaged in collision with yacht Amuree off Dunkirk during Operation Dynamo, ship later damaged by bombs from German aircraft 31/05/1940
Worcester Destroyer Damaged by bomb near miss from German aircraft off Dunkirk during Operation Dynamo, ship remained operational 27/05/1940. Damaged when striking underwater obstruction damaging propellers 29/05/1940
Scimitar Destroyer Damaged in collision with British warship Icarus during Operation Dunkirk, damage to propellers 31/05/1940
Sabre Destroyer Damaged by bombs from German aircraft off Dunkirk during Operation Dynamo 31/05/1940
Saladin Destroyer Damaged by bomb near miss from German aircraft off Dunkirk during Operation Dynamo 30/05/1940
Bideford Sloop Damaged by bombs from German aircraft during Operation Dynamo, bomb hit the stern disabling ship, she was beached by her crew 29/05/1940. Towed to Portsmouth for repair 03/06/1940
France flag Lost Report
Bourrasgue Destroyer Mined & gunfire from German shore battery off Nieuport during Operation Dynamo, 16 dead 30/05/1940
Orage Destroyer Damaged by bombs from German aircraft off Boulogne-sur-Mar 23/05/1940. Ship burned through the night & sank next day 24/05/1940
Siroco Destroyer Torpedoed by German E-boats S 23 & S 26 during Operation Dynamo, 59 crew & 600+ troops dead 31/05/1940
Chacal Destroyer Bombed by German Ju-87 Stuka dive-bomber aircraft off Boulogne-sur-Mar & shelled by German shore batteries 50.47N 01.33E 24/05/1940
Jaguar Destroyer Damaged by torpedoes from German E-boats S.21 & S.23, off Cap d'Alprecht, ship ran aground & abandoned, bombed again & destroyed, 13 dead, 23 injured, 51.03N 22.22E 23/05/1940
Bison Destroyer Damaged by bombs from German Ju-87 Stuka dive-bomber aircraft off Trondheim, during troop evacuation from Namsos, ship was scuttled by British warships Grenade & Imperial, 136 dead, 229 survivors 03/05/1940
L'Adroit Destroyer Bombed by German Heinkel III aircraft off Dunkirk, ship sunk in shallow water off Malo-les-Bains 51.03N 02.23E 21/05/1940
Doris Submarine Torpedoed by German submarine U-09, S of Den Helder, off the Dutch coast, 41 dead, 0 survivors 09/05/1940
Damaged Report
Cyclone Destroyer Damaged by torpedo from German E-boats S 24 destroying her bows off Dunkirk during Operation Dynamo 30/05/1940. Scuttled at Brest, whilst under repair 18/06/1940
Fougueux Destroyer Damaged by bombs from German Ju-87 Stuka dive-bomber aircraft off Boulogne 24/05/1940
poland flag Lost Report
Grom Destroyer Damaged by shell from shore battery hitting oil bunker & boiler 04/05/1940. Bombed at Rombaksfjord by German Heinkel 111.s aircraft, ship broke in two 05/05/1940
netherlands flag Lost Report
Van Galen Destroyer Damaged by German aircraft during air raid made it back to Merdehaven & sank 10/05/1940. Salvaged by Germans 23/10/1941. Declared constructive total loss
O 08 Submarine Scuttled to avoid capture by Germans 14/05/1940
O 11 Submarine Scuttled to prevent capture by Germans at Den Helder 14/05/1940
O 12 Submarine Scuttled to avoid capture by Germans at The Hague 14/05/1940
norway flag Lost Report
Troll Destroyer Captured by Germans at Floro 18/05/1940
Snogg Torpedoboat Captured by Germans at Floro 18/05/1940
B 6 Submarine Captured by Germans at Floro 18/05/1940
 

 

Axis Losses

german flag Lost Report
U-13 Submarine Depth charged by British warship Weston, NE of Newcastle, in the North Sea, some Enigma rotors & operating instructions recovered from boat, 0 dead, 26 survivors captured 52.26N 02.02E 31/05/1940
M 134 Minesweeper Bombed by British RAF Blenheim aircraft in Bergen Roads 09/05/1940
Damaged Report
Mowe Destroyer Damaged by torpedo from British submarine Taku, in the North Sea 56.45N 06.12E 08/05/1940
U-9 Destroyer Damaged by depth charges from British warships Jackel, Javelin & Gallant, of Norfolk coast, attack last several hours before boat escaped 25/05/1940. Arrived Kiel 30/05/1940
 

 

Neutral Losses

No neutral losses this month

 

Commissioned - Details ships newly commissioned during the month.

Allied Commissioned

british flag Class Builder Launched Armament Armour Speed Tons Crew
Illustrious Fleet Carrier Vickers & Armstrong Ltd, Barrow Apr 1939 16 x 4.5"; 48 x 1.6"; 60 Aircraft 4.5"-2.5" 31 29240 1997
Bonaventure Light Cruiser Scotts' Shipbuilding, Greenock Apr 1939 8 x 5.25"; 1 x 4"; 8 x 1.6"; 6 x 21" TT 3"-1" 32.2 7515 530
Fiji Light Cruiser John Brown & Co, Ltd, Clydebank May 1939 12 x 6"; 8 x 4"; 8 x 1.5"; 6 x 21" TT; 2 Aircraft 3.5"-1.5" 31.5 10450 920
Harvester Destroyer Vickers & Armstrong Ltd, Barrow Sep 1939 3 x 4.7"; 8 x 21" TT 35 1930 145
Fernie Destroyer Escort John Brown & Co, Ltd, Clydebank Jan 1940 4 x 4"; 4 x 1.6" pp   28 1000 147
Calendula Corvette Harland & Wolff Ltd, Belfast Mar 1940 1 x 4"; 40 DC 16.5 1245 109
Gardenia Corvette William Simons & Co, Renfrew Apr 1940 1 x 4"; 40 DC 16.5 1245 109
Hibiscus Corvette Harland & Wolff Ltd, Belfast Apr 1940 1 x 4"; 40 DC 16.5 1245 109
Fernie Destroyer Escort John Brown & Co, Ltd, Clydebank Jan 1940 4 x 4"; 4 x 1.6" pp 28 1450 147
France Class Builder Launched Armament Armour Speed Tons Crew
Courbet Battleship Arsenal de Lorient Naval Dockyard Sep 1911 12 x 12"; 22 x 5.46"; 7 x 3"; 2 x 1.77" AA 11.75" - 2.75" 20 22189 1069
Paris Battleship Forges et Chanteiers de la Mediterranee, La Sayne, Nr Toulon. Sep 1912 12 x 12"; 22 x 5.46"; 7 x 3"; 2 x 1.77" AA 11.75" - 2.75" 20 22189 1069
poland flag Class Builder Launched Armament Armour Speed Tons Crew
Garland Destroyer Fairfield Shipbuilding, Ltd, Govan Oct 1935 4 x 4.7"; 8 x 21" TT 36 1370 145
netherlands flag Class Builder Launched Armament Armour Speed Tons Crew
O 21 Submarine De Schelde Navy Yard, Vlissingen Oct 1939 1 x 88 mm; 2 x 40 mm; 8 x 21" TT   19.5 934 55
O 22 Submarine De Schelde Navy Yard, Vlissingen Jan 1940 1 x 88 mm; 2 x 40 mm; 8 x 21" TT   19.5 934 55
O 23 Submarine Rotterdamsche Droogdok Maatschappij, Rotterdam Dec 1939 1 x 88 mm; 2 x 40 mm; 8 x 21" TT   19.5 934 55
O 24 Submarine Rotterdamsche Droogdok Maatschappij, Rotterdam Mar 1940 1 x 88 mm; 2 x 40 mm; 8 x 21" TT   19.5 934 55
 

 

Axis Commissioned

german flag Class Builder Launched Armament Armour Speed Tons Crew
T 04 Destroyer Schichau Yard, Elbing Apr 1938 1 x 105 mm; 1 x 37 mm; 2 x 20 mm; 6 x 21" TT; 60 Mines 35.5 844 119
T 11 Destroyer Deschimag AG 'Weser', Bremen Mar 1939 1 x 105 mm; 1 x 37 mm; 2 x 20 mm; 6 x 21" TT; 60 Mines 35.5 844 119
U-100 Submarine Krupp Germaniawerft, Kiel Jan 1940 1 x 88 mm; 1 x 20 mm; 5 x 21" TT 17.9 741 44
U-123 Submarine Deschimag AG 'Weser', Bremen Mar 1940 1 x 105 mm; 1 x 37 mm; 1 x 20 mm; 6 x 21" TT 18.2 1034 48

 

Neutral Commissioned

USA flag Class Builder Launched Armament Armour Speed Tons Crew
Buck Destroyer Philadelphia Navy Yard, Philadelphia, PA May 1939 5 x 5"; 4 x 0.5"; 8 x 21" TT 35 1764 192
Sailfish Submarine Portsmouth Navy Yard, Portsmouth, NH Sep 1938 1 x 3"; 2 x 0.5"; 2 x 0.3"; 8 x 21" TT   20 1450 59
japan flag Class Builder Launched Armament Armour Speed Tons Crew
Kashima Patrol Cruiser Mitsubishi Heavy Metals Industries, Yokohama Sep 1939 4 x 5.5"; 2 x 5"; 4 x 1"; 4 x 21" TT; 1 Aircraft 2"-1" 18 5890 450
Namikaze Destroyer Escort Maizuru Naval Dockyard Jun 1922 4 x 4.7"; 13 x 25 mm; 5 x 13 mm; 36 DC   34.5 1345 148
Nokaze Destroyer Escort Maizuru Naval Dockyard Oct 1921 4 x 4.7"; 13 x 25 mm; 5 x 13 mm; 36 DC   34.5 1345 148
Numakaze Destroyer Escort Maizuru Naval Dockyard Feb 1922 4 x 4.7"; 13 x 25 mm; 5 x 13 mm; 36 DC   34.5 1345 148
italy flag Class Builder Launched Armament Armour Speed Tons Crew
Luigi Torelli Submarine Odero-Terni-Orlando, Muggiano,  La  Spezia Jan 1940 1 x 100 mm; 4 x 13.2 mm; 8 x 21" TT   17.8 1175 17.8