H.M.S. Windrush

This is the ship you see at the western end of Cherbourg harbour, looking as if she has run aground.

One of the very few WWII ships to survive to the present day,
H.M.S. Windrush was built in 1943 in Scotland.
The frigate spent her first few months in service escorting convoys across the Atlantic.

In the early months of 1944 she and five of her sisters were transferred to the Free French Navy and she was renamed Découverte and under this name she served out the rest of the war.

On D-day she was off the coast of Normandy escorting smaller ships heading towards Juno Beach.
She anchored to give covering fire and later in the day returned to Great Yarmouth on the east coast of England.
Great Yarmouth was one of the principle ports for the Free French Navy.

She returned to Normandy and took part in the liberation of Cherbourg and was the first French ship to enter the port of Brest, where she helped empty the ammunition dumps.

After the war she stayed on active service with the French until 1959 when she was dumped in the French naval cemetery at L'anderennec.

In 1967 she was towed north to become a training ship in the port of Cherbourg.
She was beached in front of the training college and concreted into position.
Her name was changed to Lucifer II (possibly because they practised fire control on the ship).

In 2001 she was declared redundant and after preservation proved impossible she was cut up in the summer of 2009. A sad end for a fine old lady.

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