British Yard Mine Sweeper
BRITISH YARD MINE SWEEPERS
BYMS’s were built in the United States and transferred the Royal Navy under the Lend-lease Programme. “British Yard Mine Sweepers” are so called because they were built to the same design as the US Navy’s “Yard Mine Sweepers”.
Crews for the BYMS’s would sail to the United States, often on the Queen Mary, which could sail unescorted because of her greater speed, to collect their vessel. They would then have the formidable task of sailing their small vessel back across the Atlantic Ocean, often in winter.
MINE SWEEPING FLOTILLA: 156th MSF, Mediterranean: 2031, 2056, 2068, 2072, 2073, 2187, 2190, 2209.
Built by: Robert Jacob, Inc., City Island, New York, USA.
Laid down: 30 April 1942.
Launched: 15. August 1942
Handed over to Royal Navy: 24 March 1943.
Returned to USA: 15 April 1946.Transferred to Greece and re-named Zakynthos (M 212)
Wooden hull. Length, 130 feet. Beam, 25 feet 6 inches. Depth, 12 feet I inch. Draft, 8 foot 10.5 inches. Displacement 207-215 tons.
Engine: Two 800 bhp General Motors diesel engines.
Speed: 14.6 knots. 10 knots while sweeping. (Eight knots with double Oropesa sweeps)
Range: 2,500 at ten knots.
Compliment: 3 officers and 27 men.
Armament: One 3-inch HA/LA gun and two Oerlikon anti-aircraft guns.
BYMS’s were fitted with a drum on the stern with LL (double L) cables for sweeping magnetic mines, an acustic hammer on the bow for sweeping acustic mines and Oropesa floats for sweeping tethered mines.
All YMS and BYMS were built to the same design, the only variation was in the number of exhaust stacks. Minesweepers 1 to 134 had two sacks, 135 to 480 had one stack, 466 to 479 had no stacks.
24 March 1943, completed.
12 May 1943, New Youk, USA.
20 to 22 May 1943, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada.
3 June 1943, St John’s Newfoundland, Canada.
11 to 15 June 1943, Londonderry, Northern Ireland.
7 July 1943, Falmouth.
25 July 1943, Gibraltar.
9 to 30 Aug 1943, Malta.
3 Sep 1943, Tripoli, Libya.
1 Dec 1943, Augusta, Sicily.
13 to 17 Jan 1944, Bari, Italy, Adriatic.
18 Feb 1944, Brindisi, Italy, Adriatic.
23 April 1944, Brindisi, Italy, Adriatic.
10 May 1944, Taranto, Italy.
11 May 1944, Brindisi, Italy, Adriatic.
14 May 1944, Taranto, Italy.
15 and 16 May 1944, Messina, Sicily.
27 June to 4 July 1944, Naples, Italy.
6 and 7 July 1944, Taranto, Italy.
15 April 1946, returned to USA.
AWARDS FOR MINESWEEPING
DSC: Distinguished Service Cross. DSM: Distinguished Service Medal. MID: Mention in Dispatches.
Sidney JAMES, P/MX67500, Leading Wireman, BYMS 2209. 24 Apr 45. DSM awarded for outstanding skill, determination and dispatch in carrying out minesweeping operations, frequently under fire, off the East Coast of Italy. Ancona Jul - Aug 1944.
James William JENKINSON, LT/JX9735B, P.O. BYMS 2209. 24 Apr 45. DSM awarded for outstanding skill, determination and dispatch in carrying out minesweeping operations, requently under fire, off the East Coast of Italy.
Bertie Horace LOYNS, Lieutenant, BYMS 2209, 23 May 44, MID awarded for Operation Avalanche (Salerno landings). 24 Apr 45. DSC awarded for outstanding skill, determination and dispatch in carrying out minesweeping operations, frequently under fire, off the East Coast of Italy. Ancona Jul - Aug 44.
OFFICERS ON THE NAVY LIST, June 1943.
Not on Navy Lists.
OFFICERS ON THE NAVY LIST, June 1944.
Not on Navy Lists.
OFFICERS ON THE NAVY LIST, July 1945.
Not on Navy Lists.
If you, your father or your grandfather have any additional information about this ship, crew lists, stories, photographs, please send copies of them to be added to our records and this website.
BYMS 2209 with her American number.