NOSTALGIA: The submarine that sank twice

Part of a wider picture of clippies at North End tram depot In Gladys Avenue, Portsmouth. I have counted 175 members of staff of which just 21 are men. Picture: Barry Cox Collection

NOSTALGIA: Hundreds of clippies replaced men who were called up

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On June 1, 1939, the submarine HMS Thetis was lost in Liverpool Bay during an accident while on diving trials.

Ninety-nine men died in the incident. There were just four survivors.

Among the dead were several civilian builders and Admiralty officials.

Some months later the boat was salvaged, repairs carried out and Thetis was recommissioned as HMS Thunderbolt. 

But she was obviously jinxed.

On March 14, 1943, the submarine was lost for a second time when Thunderbolt was sunk off Sicily.

The boat was not given up as lost until March 28, 1943. 

Next month is the 75th anniversary of the loss.

Paul Wingate has contacted me as his would-be grandfather went down with the submarine.

If you had a relative who was lost on the boat when she sailed under either name and perhaps have a photograph I would like to commemorate this gallant submarine.

Please send or scan them to me. Thank you.