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Confirmation of the identity of the wreck of the submarine HMS Urge off Malta

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In the last few days, a diving team led by Professor Timmy Gambin from the University of Malta have closely examined the wreck of HMS Urge which was found off Grand Harbour in 2019. They have brought back definite proof of her identity as the name of “URGE” could clearly be seen on the port side of the conning tower. The wreck is very deep (115 metres) making the dive difficult and the bottom time very short.


Our thanks to Timmy and his team for a very difficult undertaking.

There had been no doubt that the wreck was that of HMS Urge as no other ‘U’ class submarine was known to be lost in the area (North East Searched Channel).

Some had claimed that the wreck was that of HMS Pandora which was absurd as the ‘U’ and ‘P’ class were quite distinct in size and features. A couple of articles had been written about a supposed discovery of the wreck at Ras Hilal (Libya) but this wreck was known to be that of U-205 and already examined by divers. HMS Urge had never received orders to go to Ras Hilal and all the claims that her commander would go there  and surface in daylight were pure fantasy and groundless. A careful examination of the documents of the period showed that even if the submarine had managed to escape the mines in Malta, she could not have reached Ras Hilal on the morning of 29 April when a submarine was supposedly sighted and attacked by a CR-42 fighter.

The submarine apparently hit a mine laid by the 3rd Schnellbootflottille (MTBs) on 20 April 1942. There were no survivors.

The wreck is a war grave and will not be disturbed.


Edited by Platon Alexiades
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Posted (edited)

Dear Francesco,

Thank you for the acknowledgment. Today the Malta Times published an article:


I am attaching a photo of the image of the wreck as reconstructed by the the 3D cameras. I expect the University of Malta to submit better ones on their site in the near future.

I would also like to thank my friend Francesco Mattesini who wrote quite a bit on HMS Urge even though we did not always agree on her fate! He kept the story of this submarine alive and I am thankful for very lively discussions!

184632696_4162691457094958_3397770309186355012_n.thumb.jpg.026e5588240ae233dc599a0306a59ff0.jpgAll the best,


Edited by Platon Alexiades
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