Mr Joyce's memories of HMS London and PQ17

He served in the Royal Navy on the arctic convoys during WW2.

HMS London 27th February 1945
Mr Joyce
HMS London ship's company
From Mr Joyce's collection

During WW2 Benfleet resident Douglas Joyce served in the Royal Navy as a seaman. His service was on the heavy cruiser HMS London.  This article records his service on the Arctic Convoys including PQ17.

HMS London was the flagship for PQ17. Mr Joyce was on the bridge when Admiral Hamilton received the “Convoy is to scatter” message at 21:36 on the 4th July 1942. Mr Joyce is probably the last surviving person who was on the HMS London bridge that day.

The video describes his joining the Royal Navy, the Arctic Convoys, the order to scatter PQ17, Jo Stalin’s lack of support, the dangers of having seaplanes on a cruiser, and visiting Murmansk.

Mr Joyce received several medals for his Arctic Convoy service including a Russian Ushakov medal in 2014.

After the Arctic Convoys HMS London went to Alexandria and served in the Indian Ocean.

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  • My father Arthur William Henry Bush was a rating on the HMS London on the convoys.

    By Janet Bush (23/06/2020)
  • My Dad was an Able Seaman on London. Like Mr Joyce he was on the ship for the arctic convoys and the East Indies Fleet. He went to the Russian embassy for his medal too. I only wish he could have seen the video before he died in 2018. He would have loved it.

    By John Kilbey (14/05/2020)
  • My Dad, Charles Thomas Wright BEM, was Supply warrant officer on HMS London 1941/43 incl. Convoy PQ17 and others Also battle of Atlantic

    By Charles (08/05/2020)
  • My dad was on HMS London. I wish I had information about him, he was a Petty Officer probably called Lofty Chapman.

    By Rob c (28/01/2019)
  • My uncle, George Cumby was on this ship during the Yangtse incident.
    I have his medal and papers following his death. Anyone know Him? Thanks George Teece.

    By George teece (13/07/2018)
  • My late father died March 2016 aged 92, served on HMS London as gunner – Anthony Taylor (Tony).

    By Janet Foster (19/10/2017)
  • It was great to see Mr Joyces memories of the artic convoys.  My great grandad was a CPO on the HMS London We have a copy of the same crew photo. and I can see him in crew photo. I wonder where the photo was taken.

    By Peter Start (11/07/2016)
  • Mr Joyce’s recalling his role and experience in the Royal Navy were good to hear, speaking myself as a former cold war warrior serving between 1976 and 1994 in the Royal Navy. 

    By Christopher Davis (01/12/2015)

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