|Abstract||Three local men were amongst the crew - Hector Ingate, Wilfred Frank Pettican and Anthony Driffield Seabrook
HMS RAWALPINDI was a P&O liner on the London, Bombay and Far East routes. At the outbreak of World War 2 the ship was taken over and converted to an armed merchant cruiser. While on patrol between Iceland and the Faroes, she was attacked by the German battle cruisers SCHARNHORST and GNEISENAU. Hopelessly outmatched she attempted to escape into a nearby fog bank. With her bridge and wireless-room destroyed and completely at the mercy of the enemy ships it was decided to abandon the vessel. 60-year old Captain Edward Coverley Kennedy RN of RAWALPINDI decided to fight, rather than surrender as demanded by the Germans. He was heard to say "We'll fight them both, they'll sink us, and that will be that. Good-bye". The casualties on board the Rawalpindi amounted to 275 dead including her commander Captain Kennedy and 39 other officers. Twenty-two crew members were taken prisoner by the German warships. The blazing RAWALPINDI drifted for three hours before sinking.
SCHARNHORST and GNEISENAU
Anthony Driffield Seabrook
|Title:|| P&O liner RAWALPINDI converted to an Armed Merchant Cruiser. She was built in 1925 by Harland and Wolff for the London, Bombay and Far East passenger service. At the outbreak of WW2, the RAWALPINDI was converted to an Armed Merchant Cruiser.
She was sunk 23 November 1939 in an heroic action against the German battleships SCHARNHORST and GNEISENAU. Three Tollesbury men were serving on RAWALPINDI at the time and lost their lives. They were Hector Ingate, Wilfred Frank Pettican and Anthony Driffield Seabrook. Out of a total of 311, 275 lost their lives, including her commander, Captain Kennedy. 22 were rescued by the German warships and a further 14 by the British CHITRAL.