ID: OOD_009 / Edwin Sparrow / Tony Millatt

TitleFrederick Frost killed 1 June 1940
Chief Cook
H.M. Yacht GRIVE. Naval Auxiliary Personnel (Merchant Navy)

Age 21
Died 1 June 1940
Commemorated on Roll of Honour in St Mary's Church, Tollesbury, and on Liverpool Naval Memorial.

Fred was a Tollesbury yachtsman - he was born 30th January 1918, the son of Harry Alfred G. Frost and May née Appleton from Tollesbury D'arcy, married 21st March 1909.
Fred joined the crew of HMS GRIVE when war came. He was killed when the ship struck a magnetic mine in the Dunkirk rescue. Also on the HMS GRIVE was Jack Wash from Tollesbury. He was on deck when the mine struck and he was saved. Jack was only 17 at the time.


HMS GRIVE was built as the large steam yacht NARCISSUS in 1905 by Fairfield S.B., Glasgow. 222 feet long, twin screw steam turbines. She served in WW1 as Auxiliary Patrol Vessel HMS NARCISSUS II. In the 1920s she was reengined with twin Sulzer diesel engines at Camper & Nicholson. In WW2 she became HMS GRIVE and was attached to the Fleet Air Arm.
HMS GRIVE made her first trip as part of the Dunkirk Evacuation 30 May 1944. In three trips she rescued at least 1,300 troops, but on 1 June 1940 while leaving Dunkirk Harbour she struck a magnetic mine and sank.

From the archives of The Scotsman

1939-45 War Star 1939-45 War Medal Defence Medal

1939-1945 Star; Atlantic Star; 1939-1945 War Medal; Defence Medal

At the outbreak of the Second World War, it was evident that the Royal Navy would not be able to man all the auxiliary vessels that would serve with it. To deal with the shortfall in manpower, a number of officers and men of the Merchant Navy agreed to serve with the Royal Navy under the terms of a T.124 agreement, which made them subject to Naval discipline while generally retaining their Merchant Navy rates of pay and other conditions. The manning port established to administer these men was at Liverpool. More than 13,000 seamen served under these conditions in various types of auxiliary vessels, at first mainly in armed merchant cruisers, but also in armed boarding vessels, cable ships, rescue tugs, and others on special service. The Liverpool Naval Memorial commemorates 1,400 of these officers and men, who died on active service aboard more than 120 ships, and who have no grave but the sea. The great majority of Merchant Navy men, who did not serve with the Navy, but with merchant ships, are commemorated on the Merchant Navy Memorial, at Tower Hill in London.

Liverpool Naval Memorial Panel 13 Column 2 contains 12 names from HMS GRIVE.

Lloyrds Register of Yachts various years.
History of the NARCISSUS at
Photograph of NARCISSUS is from but no contact details can be found for the site [13 Jan 2010]

The article above is from the Memorial Profile for Frederick Frost, written by Edwin Sparrow. It is similar to the section in On Our Doorstep. Further information has been added about HMS GRIVE.

AuthorEdwin Sparrow / Tony Millatt
SourceMersea Museum