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Mystery ship ?

Discussion in 'The War at Sea' started by bosworth gannaway, Jul 16, 2007.

  1. bosworth gannaway

    bosworth gannaway New Member

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    Anyone know anything about this ? If true, there could be a good book in it.
    Apparently, the Royal and Merchant Navies, being concerned about high ship losses to aerial attacks, took an elderly ship (possibly cargo) and fitted her with every conceivable anti-aircraft weapon known to man. These weapons included rocket borne hooks and nets and other experimental weaponry etc.etc. The ship was fitted out somewhere in the North-East of England and when ready sailed for a gunnery range off the Scottish coast for trials. Barely a few miles out of port (possibly Tyneside) she was attacked by a crack Luftwaffe anti-shipping unit and a Battle Royal commenced ! It is thought that this battle may have been witnessed by 1000's of people watching from the nearby coast but it eventually resulted in the ship sinking and every Luftwaffe aircraft being brought down. It also seems that the battle continued between the downed Luftwaffe aircrew in their dinghies and the ship's crew in their lifeboats. Apparently, one old sea dog, who had served on the ship man and boy, was so cheesed off at the loss of his ship, that taking a ship's cutlass from a deck rack, he jumped into the water and swam over to a Luftwaffe crew in their dinghy and cut 'em up badly ! It is also rumoured that a German female spy lived in the dock area and notified the Luftwaffe of the ship sailing.
    Has anyone heard of this incident ?
    BG
     
  2. Ossian phpbb3

    Ossian phpbb3 New Member

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  3. Simonr1978

    Simonr1978 New Member

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    From the other thread.

    Additionally, as the first anyone realised a ship had gone down was at the time the local lifeboat and her escort arrived to pick up the He111's surviving crew and found herself in the debris of the Patia, it seems unlikely that it was witnessed by anyone else, on shore or otherwise.

    Equally the "...old sea dog, who had served on the ship man and boy..." can only have been in his mid-30's at the oldest if he served on Patia from the day she was built, hardly the wizened old sailor that this image conjures up.

    There are enough general similarities though that I believe the ship in question is almost certainly HMS Patia, but that the story itself has at some stage been embellished and padded more than a little bit, the result is the fantastic but unfortunately I believe mostly fictional tale as posted by Bosworth and earlier by Marlin.

    (It is worth mentioning here as an aside that Marlin's credibility was called into question when he appeared to have made up a second user account in order to back up another war story, challenged on this he disappeared and has not been heard of since, so the fact that he mentioned the story is not reliable corroboration)

    Oh, and you might want to hold fire on the book, I believe before his disappearance Marlin was supposed to be working on something similar (A screenplay IIRC), and I think he's got at least a couple of years head start! :wink:
     
  4. merlin phpbb3

    merlin phpbb3 New Member

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    BBB

    PLEASE NOTE THAT I AM 'MERLIN'.........
    NOT MARLIN or MARLON.
    IT IS NOT I THAT AM WRITING 'THE BOYS OWN PAPER' STORIES under the the name of either!
    I may write Bull**** but it is genuine Bull****!
    So, if Marlin surfaces again under any other name...IT IS NOT ME!
    BBB. (Bull**** Baffles Brains)
     
  5. bosworth gannaway

    bosworth gannaway New Member

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    Yes, that's right, and it didn't get much response then, either !
    The purpose of the second message was to get as much confirmation as I can of the event in question. I also might have guessed that it would be you that would draw attention to my first post !
    Cheers,
    BG
     
  6. bosworth gannaway

    bosworth gannaway New Member

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    Thanks a lot. This is useful corroboration or counter corroboration and both are invaluable to the researcher. As it happens the book is finished but my editor wants copper bottomed confirmation of a lot of major points - hence my mail in this forum and others. As for the screenplay, well the studio, being located in Hollywood, don't give a toss about very much of the accuracy of the content at all, just as long as they can cast George Clooney as the ship's captain, Daniel Craig as the Luftwaffe pilot, and Catherine Zeta-Jones as the female love interest. The only thing they have given ground on is that the ship/aircraft battle take place with the ship having just sailed from New York City ( even they accepted that few German bombers could fly from enemy occupied Europe to the East coast of the USA !! )
    Cheers,
    BG
     
  7. bosworth gannaway

    bosworth gannaway New Member

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    Re: BBB

    I wouldn't worry too much, Merlin, since I doubt that anyone could mistake your posts for mine !
    I am however intrigued as to your thinking that the story of HMS Patria is Boy's Own Paper stuff ! This is good news and doubtless explains why hard bitten Hollywood producers see it similarly........long may they do so, just as long as their cheques keep rolling in, anyway !
    Cheers,
    BG
     
  8. merlin phpbb3

    merlin phpbb3 New Member

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    what ever

    I do know a little (not much) about HMS Patria, my late friend 'CPO' Bill Morton from Nuneaton was on HMS Patria as a DEMS (Defensively Equipped Merchant Ships) in charge of a gun crew when she was sunk.
    I'm sure that he mentioned the rumour of the German spy lady, I think she went by the name of Poppy Tupper. :roll:
    BBB.
     
  9. Ossian phpbb3

    Ossian phpbb3 New Member

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    Quoted directly from "The Secret War 1939-1945" by Gerald Pawle, George C Harrap 1956 p87 et seq.
    My edits in [brackets] to put into context. Spelling errors are entirely my responsibility
    Menhinick was Lt Alec Menhinick RNVR, who worked at the Admiralty Department of Misc. Weapons Development (the "Wheezers and Dodgers"). The Harvey Projector was a rocket launcher, not to be confused with the Holman Projector, which was a steam powered grenade launcher.

    Apart from BG's Dad's memoirs, this is, I think, as close to the horses mouth as it is possible to get on this topic.
     
  10. bosworth gannaway

    bosworth gannaway New Member

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    Re: what ever

    You have just got to be kidding !? You actually knew somebody who was a Cheif Petty Officer on this ship ?! This is quite astonishing !!!!
    From the little I know of you, I expect that you would be offended to accept money for any "consultancy work" you may care to provide (and, frankly, knowing our American colleagues -God bless them !, it need only be that you can confirm that you knew Morton ! ), but I genuinely see a bloody good opportunity for you to act in some sort of capacity in this business. Please put to one side the fact that there is obviously much about me that pisses you off ( I piss EVERYBODY off- it is just my nature ! ) and consider that there is a distinct opportunity here for both yourself and the Hollywood studio to benefit from whatever you can offer them. NO !, bollocks to that, never mind about the bloody studio- wouldn't you, as an ex Tommy ( and a cavalryman, to boot ! ), just love to balance the scales up a tad and get this movie going in the direction it should, and have the whole bloody thing shown to be the Royal Navy operation that it was !! Not only that, but some would say that you might owe it to your oppo, CPO Bill Morton ! Anyway, think it over, but you would need to engage a theatrical agent, since the Yanks won't take you seriously if you don't !!
    I am truly humbled !
    BG
     
  11. merlin phpbb3

    merlin phpbb3 New Member

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    Re: BBB

    So, are you finally admitting that you are Marlin?
    and I already have an agent from my stage work!
     
  12. bosworth gannaway

    bosworth gannaway New Member

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    Well, f--k me and f-k me again, I might have previously seemed to take the piss out of the Scots ( of course, they never take the piss out of the English ! ), but you have truly earned your salt on this one, you great Scots loon ! ( I say that as someone whose admiration for Caledonians knows no bounds !! ) This is truly a reference source sans pareil ! It just goes to show that it is possible to know someone who was actually on the scene ( and my Old Man genuinely was ) but still yet find possibly even better sources of information !!!

    Insofar as the alleged existence of the German female spy is concerned, being flattered by the attentions of Hollywood muguls waving fat cheques and bottles of vintage Champagne under my nose, I now cannot for the life of me recall as to whether or not this creature did ever exist or did we invent her, but what care I, since from the minute I had Catherine Zeta-Jones (who is one of our financiers) undulate her udders under my nose, I was really past the point of caring..............not only that, but if she didn't exist , then she should have, since otherwise how else did the bloody Germans mount ( lovely word that, "mount",- see, I am still thinking of C.Z-J !! ) an attack on the "Patria" !!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Cheers,
    BG
     
  13. bosworth gannaway

    bosworth gannaway New Member

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    Re: BBB

    Admitting that I am Merlin ? Sorry, amigo, I merely meant that you seemed to be taking great pains to disassociate yourself from my emails !
    Mind you, I can't blame you, since sometimes they stretch even my credulity, and I am the f-----r who has lived 'em all !!
    Cheers,
    BG
     
  14. merlin phpbb3

    merlin phpbb3 New Member

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    mystery ship

    No, I'm MERLIN... you Marlin!
     
  15. bosworth gannaway

    bosworth gannaway New Member

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    Re: BBB

    So you already have an agent, huh ! Bugger me, I have only had one since last year !!! Somehow the words Grandma and eggs and suck 'em springs to my mind ! No, seriously, though, although it never entered my head that there could still be anyone alive who knew any of the ship's company ( even my Old man, who was a teenage Middy on the "Patria", died nearly 20 years ago ), it is an amazing thing that such a person is still alive. So, think it over and see how you feel ! I kid you not, Hollywood studios give their eye teeth for pukka personages who can give their movies credibility by acting as " Tehcnical Consultants or Historical Advisers " !!!
    BG
     
  16. bosworth gannaway

    bosworth gannaway New Member

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    Re: mystery ship


    Sorry, I agree, YOU are Merlin !!
    BG
     
  17. merlin phpbb3

    merlin phpbb3 New Member

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    aziz

    BG..I did not come up on the last boat!
     
  18. Simonr1978

    Simonr1978 New Member

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    Ok apologees in advance for what is a fairly long post but things seem a bit confusing as to where we actually are at present on this.

    First off I'm assuming at this stage that we're accepting that the incident as recounted by BG and Marlin is a heavily embellished version of the sinking of HMS Patia.

    What is confusing me slightly is how you get to the stage of having apparently finished writing a book and then decide to go doing the research behind it, this seems more than a bit back to front, and whilst information on Patia was not particularly easy to come by (Asking on other forums and a couple of afternoon's Googling on the internet) it didn't exactly require a collosal amount of effort to come up with a brief if factual account which is largely borne out by Ossian's post too. If I had been writing the book I would have thought it would make sense to do this first, so that the information was at hand during writing.

    Are you intending to do a rewrite based on the numerous and significant differences between these accounts and your own? (i.e. the "crack anti shipping squadron" becomes a single ordinary bomber, the "Cutlass" becomes a knife, the battle in the water never actually occured, etc.)

    I'm assuming that even the name of the ship was unknown to you since you've posted her up on here as "Mystery Ship" and didn't respond to my request for more details on the other thread, without giving too much away how did yet get around then writing your (Apparently finished) book and screenplay? "HMS Ship-X"? "HMS Mystery Ship"? (Probably wouldn't go with the latter, it would sound like Scooby Doo at sea!)

    The later brings me onto the next thing which is confusing me more than a little.

    At this point I will digress slightly to point out that I appreciate how hard it is for intonation to come across in text posts on forums such as this, the emoticons do go some way toward rectifying this, and [sarcasm] before and [\sarcasm] after offending sentences makes the use of sarcasm nice and obvious. I will assume at this stage that your references to some kind of movie are intended to be taken as fact rather than sarcastic humour.

    Your posts imply that some kind of movie is in the pipeline, to the point that money was already being recieved from "Hollywood moguls".

    This is curious as the first mention of a movie or screenplay in this thread was from myself in reference to Marlin's earlier post where he mentioned that he was working on a screenplay. It is peculiar to me that things seem to have suddenly jumped from requesting information about an incident, to having not just a completed book but a movie in the works concerning an event where you did not at the start of the week even know the name of the ship involved.

    This does appear to indicate that you may be another (The third counting Esquilax?) incarnation of Marlin on this forum.

    Perhaps in the plain text I missed the obvious sarcasm or attempt at humour and you had merely picked up and ran with the comment I'd made? I will ask outright however, just in order to try and clear things up a bit, are you Marlin/Esquilax?

    I wonder if you will similarly rewrite the screenplay to reflect what appears to be the true story of Patia? But then I guess not:

    Comment in bracket my own and I have editted the post to keep it relevant to the Patia story rather than Hollywood moguls or celebrities.

    Well, we wouldn't want to let something like facts inconvenience a good story now would we? :roll:

    Perhaps the attack could have been mounted by a standard anti-shipping patrol or a target of opportunity sortie? Of course the element of espionage makes the tale seem more interesting though doesn't it?

    I can't help wondering thought that if the German spy was deliberately invented, what other parts of this tale might have been intentionally invented or exaggerated to make them more interesting.

    This kind of thing really does irritate me truth be told, there are more than enough genuine tales of heroism, bravery and sacrifice in the military and espionage history of not just WWII but of pretty much all wars, we really do not need another "Based on a true story" type of mainly fictional tale where most of the story is made up to make it more interesting.

    (NB. The emphasis in references to Marlin at in order to make it clear that it is a different poster from Merlin that I am referring to.)
     
  19. Ossian phpbb3

    Ossian phpbb3 New Member

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    Well said, Simon, particularly your last paragraph --- echoes the last para of my quote

    Also, I am curious -- in BGs original post he says
    Within 24 hours he is saying:
    Is this an attempt at the Guinness Book of Records as well?
     
  20. corpcasselbury

    corpcasselbury New Member

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    Re: BBB

    What's the "Boy's Own Paper"?
     

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