25 November 1941


The HMS Barham is sunk by a German torpedo during World War 2.

The HMS Barham was one of five fast battleships of the Queen Elizabeth class. Commissioned on August 1915, she displaced 29,150 tons and was intended to replace battlecruisers as the main offensive thrust during an engagement. A veteran of World War One, she received six hits during the Battle of Jutland. After modernization during 1927-28, she served in the Mediterranean until war broke out in 1939, when she was reassigned to the Home Fleet

During the Second World War, a spate of misfortunes had dogged the HMS Barham. On December 12 1939, she collided with a destroyer, the HMS Duchess, sinking her in the mishap. A fortnight later, she was attacked by the U-30 which put her out of commission for six months with a single torpedo hit. Reassigned to the Mediterranean Fleet, she was damaged by the French battleship Richelieu during an attempt to capture Dakar on September 1940. She was again attacked and damaged by Luftwaffe aircraft on May 1941, during the German airborne invasion of Crete. Thereafter, she saw some action in Libya, where her 15 inch guns were put to good effect against Rommel’s forces entrenched in Bardia.