The Convoy

HG-76: Taking the Fight to Hitler's U-boats

The Convoy cover

The Convoy

HG-76: Taking the Fight to Hitler's U-boats

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The Convoy represents a fresh approach to the story of the Battle of the Atlantic. It is also the first to deal with the more spectacular story of HG-76, a major turning point in the naval war.

HG-76 sailed from Gibraltar to Britain in December 1941 and was specially targeted by the Germans. A wolfpack of U-boats was sent against it, and the Luftwaffe was heavily committed too in a rare example of German inter-service cooperation. German intelligence agents in Gibraltar and Spain also knew every detail of HG-76 before it had even sailed, seemingly stacking the odds in favour of the Kriegsmarine.

Despite this the convoy fought its way through. Improved radar and sonar gave the convoy's escorts a slight edge over their opponents, while the escort group was led by Commander Walker, an anti-submarine expert who had developed new, aggressive U-boat hunting tactics. Previous Gibraltar convoys had been mauled by Luftwaffe bombers operating from French airfields. This time, though, HG-76 would be accompanied by HMS Audacity, the Royal Navy's first escort carrier – a new type of warship purpose-built to defend convoys from enemy aircraft and U-boats.

Following seven days and nights of relentless attack, the horrors of which are brought home through a series of first-hand accounts, the convoy finally reached the safety of a British port for the loss of only two merchant ships. Its arrival was seen as the first real convoy victory of the war. Brought to life by expert naval historian Angus Konstam, The Convoy combines the story of the technical and tactical developments that won the Battle of the Atlantic for the Allies along with a narrative that reveals both the terror and the stubborn determination that defined the experiences of those that served on convoy duties.

Table of Contents

(Subject to confirmation)
Chapter 1: A Dark Time
Chapter 2: The Gibraltar Run
Chapter 3: Assembling the Convoy
Chapter 4: The Audacity
Chapter 5: Wolfpack Seeräuber
Chapter 6: Leaving the Rock
Chapter 7: First Blood to Nestor
Chapter 8: Home for Christmas
Chapter 9: Good Hunting
Chapter 10: Red, Black and Yellow Flights
Chapter 11: Gengelbach's Revenge
Chapter 12: Operation Buttercup
Chapter 13: Winkle's First Kill
Chapter 14: Lit up by Snowflakes
Chapter 15: The Loss of Audacity
Chapter 16: The Western Approaches
Chapter 17: Home Run
Chapter 18: Taking Stock
Appendix I: The Merchant Ships of Convoy HG-76
Appendix II: The Convoy Escorts
Appendix III. U-boats Involved

Product details

Published 26 Oct 2023
Format Hardback
Edition 1st
Extent 320
ISBN 9781472857682
Imprint Osprey Publishing
Illustrations A 16-page black and white plate section.
Dimensions 234 x 153 mm
Series General Military
Short code GNM
Publisher Bloomsbury Publishing

About the contributors


Angus Konstam

Angus Konstam is a Fellow of the Royal Historical…


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