Research: HMS Beaumaris Castle (FY 992) and the ‘Surrendered’ German U-Boat (8.5.1945) – Loch Ewe (Scottish Waters – North Atlantic)

The HMS Beaumaris Castle (FY 992) was Based at Loch Ewe (Scotland)

Dear U-Boat Archive

I am researching an incident reported by a number of British sailors that is believed to have happened during the late afternoon (around 1600hrs-1700hrs) on May 8th, 1945 – the day of Nazi Germany’s surrender. It involves an ‘unknown’ German U-Boat submerging from the depths of the North Atlantic Sea near the Butt of Lewes (situated in the Outer Hebrides) and hoisting the ‘black flag’ of surrender. The nearby Royal Navy Minesweeper – the HMS Beaumaris Castle (FY 992) – is said to have accepted the surrender and to have escorted this U-Boat into a safe dock at Loch Ewe.

The U-Boat would had to have travelled around 138 miles South by Southeast to reach the Loch Ewe area. The problem is that the log-book for the HMS Beaumaris Castle (FY 992) is now ‘missing’ and all the former sailors have passed away! As I am one of the descendants of these sailors, I am attempting to ascertain the genuine facts of the matter and am searching for a U-Boat registration number that can be verified as belonging to this ‘U-Boat’ in question. Obviously, I do not expect you to have any of the answers, but I would be very interested to read any comments you might wish to make,

Thank you for your time in this matter.

Kind Regards

Adrian Wyles 

A Reply from Suffolk Library Regarding My Enquiry About the Above George Smith Interview – Dated Thursday, 11 November 2021 11:02

Dear Mr Chan-Wyles

With reference to your enquiry regarding Mr George Smith. The BBC article which relates his experiences in May 1945 was produced as part of a history project which was undertaken by Suffolk Archives to record Second World War memories. The records of the interviews and the related correspondence that were created by the project have been archived by Suffolk Archives under reference 1008/5/4/25. The details of this are shown below:

– Press release and poster re special sessions at the Lowestoft Branch for people wanting to contribute their memories to the BBC website, 13 Jan

– General information on the workshops at the Lowestoft Branch

– Invitation from Louise Clarke inviting members of the Royal Naval Patrol Service to attend workshop sessions in the Lowestoft Branch to record their memories

– Letter from Louise Clarke cancelling workshop sessions which were to have been run at the Royal Naval Patrol Service reunion, 6 Sep 2004

              sent to:

              Miss D P Jones of 33 Lynford Hall Park, Lynford, Thetford, Norfolk

              Mr Hedley Crage of Tenpenny Cottage, MIll Close, Nash Mills, Hemel Hempstead, Hertfordshire

              Mr Baden B Singleton of 6 Hillside Close, Horndean, Waterlooville, Hampshire [with reply]

– Fax sent from Louise Clarke to the Lowestoft Journal inviting member to attend an event at the Sparrows Nest Park, Lowestoft on 9 October to promote the BBC’s website

– Report on experiences and points learnt having run the sessions

Also includes:

  • Photograph of Alfred Alexander Wadlow in naval uniform

              [modern copy]

  • List of contributions made to World War Two web site

              giving article reference number, title and name of contributor

              articles contributed to the website written by:

              Charles R H Aldred

              John Bales, Joan Bishop, Jimmy Brown

              Brian Chilvers, Doreen Craig

              Doug Davies, Pat Davies, Margaret Doddington, Tommy Durrant, Arnold Dye

              Rita Flatt, Jack Fowler, Mrs Francis

              Herbert Gardiner, Muriel Gibbs

              Ray Hammond, Constance Hattersley, Mrs House, Dolly Howe

              Malcolm Jarvis

              Sid Knott

              John Yates Layfield

              P Mason, Francis Mcnab

              Maurice Rooney, Evelyn Rowlands, Doris Rudd

              George A Smith, Ivan Sparks, Mabel Surridge

              Stanley Tann

–            Memories of Charles R H Aldred of Bungay being machine gunned by a Junker whilst feeding cattle

–            Letter from John Bales of 19 Kenney Avenue, Gorleston on Sea, to Tricia Colyer, 12 May 2005 with memories of sailing on HMS Springbank, an auxiliary cruiser, in a convoy to America in 1941

–            Letter from Louise Clarke to Mr G P Bishop of Greenwake, Wych Hill Lane, Woking, Surrey, 25 June 2004 with details of his late wife Joan Bishop’s life as a child in a military family and serving as a WREN at Lowestoft

–            Memories of Doreen Bertha Craig and her time at the military hospital in Heliopois, Egypt, 5 Oct 2004

–            Memories of Joan Durrant about Tommy Durrant serving in the trenches in North Africa, 5 Oct 2004

–            Memories of Herbert Gardiner serving lighthouses during the war, 5 Oct 2004

–            Memories of Muriel Gibbs serving in the Land Army during the war, 6 Oct 2004

–            Memories of Constance Hattersley’s brother who was taken prisoner of war in Java, 5 Oct 2004

–            Memories of C A ‘Dolly’ Howe working on the bread delivery van in Blundeston,5 Oct 2004

–            Memories of Roland Jones re Jimmy Brown of the Royal Naval Patrol Service, 9 Oct 2004

–            Letter from John Yates Lanfield of 8 Prosper Street, Leeds, 12 Oct 2004          with memories of serving with the Royal Naval Patrol Service on HMT Herring whilst it was cut in half by a French merchant ship, Cossard and serving on HMS Southern Pride

–            Memories of Francis McNab working for the ISRB in Baker Street, London, 5 Oct 2004

–            Memories of Miss Rudd of Broadland Residential Home, Borrow Road, Oulton Broad with memories of Lowestoft in World War One, bombardment and Zeppelin raids with typed transcript

–            Letters between George A Smith of 38 Campsie Drive, Milngavie, Glasgow and Louise Clarke, 24 Jun-6 Sep 2004 with article about serving onboard a minesweeper on 8 May 1945 and receiving the surrender of German U-boat and photograph of George A Smith in his Royal Naval Patrol Service uniform

–            Memories of Ivan Sparkes entitled ‘My Childhood War’ in the village of Stratton St Margaret, Wiltshire

–            Memories of Mabel W Surridge working at Courtalds, Braintree, Essex, 5 Oct 2004

              [Courtalds made silk for parachutes]

This item has been transferred to our new purpose built archive, The Hold, which is located in Ipswich. If you would like to visit the Hold to view this item further information on booking an appointment can be found at Appointments at Suffolk Archives – Suffolk Archives. If you are unable to visit us in person and would like to have copies of any documents relating to Mr Smith please email me and I will forward your request to the relevant department.

Should you have any further questions relating to this matter please do not hesitate to contact us.

Yours sincerely

Neil Coles

Archive Assistant

Suffolk Archives

Strategic Development

Growth, Highways and Infrastructure Directorate

lowestoft.archives@suffolk.gov.uk

Suffolk County Council

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