british Elders & Fyffes Ltd. SS Mopan (+1940)
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nationality british
purpose transport
type cargo ship
propulsion steam
date built 1912
weight (tons) 5389  grt
about the loss
cause lost gunfire - shelled
date lost 05/11/1940  [dd/mm/yyyy]
casualties 0
about people
Cammell Laird & Co., Birkenhead
Elders & Fyffes Ltd., Garston
captain Sapsworth A. A.
no. of crew 68
about the wreck
depth (m.)
war grave
entered by Claes Johnny
entered 05/02/2009
last update Lettens Jan
last update 13/08/2011
Claes Johnny05/02/2009
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copyright: UK Hydrographic Office
 copyright: UK Hydrographic Office copyright: Unknown - onbekend - inconnu copyright: Unknown - onbekend - inconnu copyright: Unknown - onbekend - inconnu 
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Claes Johnny05/02/2009Cargo ship Mopan, 5,389grt, (Elders & Fyffes) had been sailing independently from Port Antonio to Garston with a cargo of bananas. On the 5th November 1940 mid Atlantic in position 52´ 48N 32´ 15W the ship was intercepted by the German pocket battleship Admiral Sheer and sunk by gunfire, taking all her crew prisoner. The same day the Admiral Scheer came across the 38 homeward bound Convoy HX-84made famous by the Jervis Bay incident. The captured Seamen from the Mopan were eventually placed on board the captured Norwegian tanker Sandefjord and arrived at Bordeaux on the 28th February 1941.

On the 12th March a train transporting PoW´s from a number of ships crews left St. Medard where eight of Mopan´s crew escaped from the train, five being recaptured while two made it to Spain, event ually returning to the UK. The other PoW´s were eventually interned at the Sandbostal Concentration Camp and eventually sent to the Merchant Navy purpose built PoW Camp Milag Nord, which was built by the prisoners themselves late 1941/42.
Lettens Jan13/08/2011CONVOY HX-84

The German battlecruiser Admiral Scheer sailed on 14 October 1940 and her first target was convoy HX-84 from Halifax Nova Scotia, which had been identified by B-Dienst radio intercepts. Admiral Scheer's seaplane located the convoy on 5 November 1940 and, believing it to be unescorted, Admiral Scheer closed in.

However, as the convoy appeared over the horizon, one vessel sailed out to challenge her. The HMS Jervis Bay , commanded by Captain Edward Fegen, was an armed merchant ship and was the only defence for the convoy. Owing to insufficient Allied warship numbers at this early stage in the war, convoys received destroyer escorts only on the last three days of their journey.

HMS Jervis Bay with her eight 6 in (15 cm) guns was hopelessly outclassed, but the German ship had to deal with her before pursuing the convoy, which had already begun to scatter and make smoke. Admiral Scheer succeeded in sinking six other ships, Kenbane Head, Beaverford, Fresno City, Maidan, Mopan, Trewellard and setting the tanker San Demetrio on fire (later salvaged).

The damage inflicted by Admiral Scheer would have been far greater, had it not been for the sacrifice of courageous HMS Jervis Bay and her heroic crew.

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About Owners
Elders & Fyffes Ltd., Garston

Became Fyffes Group Ltd. in 1969.
About Builders
 Cammell Laird & Co., Birkenhead
Charles Cammell and Co, iron and steel founders, was established in 1824. Cammell, Laird and Co. was formed in 1903 when the Laird Brothers amalgamated their company with Charles Cammell and Co. - - The Cammell Laird site at Birkenhead on Merseyside was established in 1824, and has been successfully building, repairing ships right through to present times. The shipyard is in a world famous maritime region and is recognised internationally as having been at the forefront of the British Shipbuilding Industry. - - - - - - - Cammell Laird used to have their own flag. The flag was used on ships that were in their trials. Only when approved by the buyer, she changed flags

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SS Mopan (+1940)
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