Saturday, July 02, 2011

Stoker A. W. Litt, R.N. (HMS Penzance)


(Top): Stoker Alfred William Litt, R.N.
[Courtesy of 'The Whitehaven News']

(Bottom): Postcard of HMS Penzance

West Cumbrian sailor Stoker Alfred William Litt, R.N. lost his life when HMS Penzance was sunk by a German submarine on 24 August 1940. He was 22 years old. With no known grave, Stoker Litt is commemorated on the Chatham Naval Memorial, Kent.

For additional information click on 'Comments' below


Blogger ritsonvaljos said...

Additional information

(a) Alfred William Litt, R.N.
(C/KX 92034)

Stoker (First Class) Alfred William Litt, R.N. (Service No C/KX 92034) was the only son of Mr and Mrs G. Litt of Sneckyeat, Hensingham, in Weddicar parish (situted between Whitehaven and Cleator Moor). The family photograph of Alfred shown above was taken while he was with HMS Pembroke. Before signing up to serve in the Navy Alfred had worked at Sneckyeat Farm, Hensingham. He is commemorated on the Chatham Naval Memorial (Ref. 38,2) and also on the Cleator Moor 'Roll of Honour'.

Alfred Litt was 22 years old in the summer of 1940 when, on 24 August, he was among 90 or so men lost from HMS Penzance. She was torpedoed and sunk by the German submarine U-37.

There were 13 known survivors of HMS Penzance picked up by MVs Flyingdale and Blairmore. The latter was subsequently torpedoed and sunk by U-37, and 7 of the survivors of HMS Penzance had to abandon ship and be rescued a second time.

CWGC Casulty details for Stoker Alfred William Litt:

Initials: A W
Nationality: United Kingdom
Rank: Stoker 1st Class
Regiment/Service: Royal Navy
Unit Text: H.M.S. Penzance
Date of Death: 24/08/1940
Service No: C/KX 92034
Casualty Type: Commonwealth War Dead
Grave/Memorial Reference: 38, 2.

(b) HMS Penzance (L28)

HMS Penzance (L28) was a Royal Navy Sloop of the Folkestone Class lunched on 10 April 1930 and commissioned on 15 January 1931. She had been built by the Devonport Dockyard at Plymouth, Devon, UK.

HMS Penzance was sunk in the North Atlantic, S.W. of Iceland on 24 August 1940. The men who went down with HMS Penzance are commemorated on the Chatham Naval Memorial, Kent because, other than the wide expanse of the sea, they have no known resting place.

Serving on the high seas in the Royal Navy in WW2 was a particularly hazardous occupation. It may best be summed up by the following lines from the poem by William Whiting, which after being set to music, has become 'The Royal Navy Hymn':

"Oh, hear us when we cry to Thee,
For those in peril on the sea!"

Monday, 11 July, 2011  
Blogger tim161 said...

I would be interested to know your connection with Alfred

Friday, 23 March, 2012  
Blogger ritsonvaljos said...

The connection with Alfred is that I have been compiling the details for the war casualties for Cleator, Cleator Moor & district for a 'Roll of Honour' (i.e. a Book of Remembrance). Alfred Litt's name was submitted to Cleator moor Town Council for inclusion some years ago, presumably by a relative.

As I have referred to in the original posting, strictly speaking Alfred Litt's home parish was Weddicar, a rural area with a very small population and no war memorial or Book of Remembrance of its own.

Ecclesiastically, for the Church of England I understand Weddicar comes within the Hensingham parish, which has no WW2 names listed on its war memeorial. For the Catholics and Methodists (non-conformists) Weddicar would normally be included with the Cleator & Cleator Moor area.

Rather than being excluded from a war memorial or Book of Remembrance by a quirk of geography or religion, it is appropriate that Alfred is commemorated on the Cleator Moor 'Roll of Honour'. Henceforth Alfred Litt will have his name and details included with all the others from the Cleator, Cleator Moor & district.
Tim, if you are a relative and have any additional photographs and / or details about him, please feel free to submit the details to Cleator Moor Town Council, or post the details on this forum.

Thanks very much.

Monday, 02 April, 2012  

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