Member of Class
O 21
Boat
O 22
Sister Ships
O 21, O 22,O 23
O 24, O 25, O 26, O 27

 

O 22 just before her first trials, Vlissingen 2 Apr 1940. In the background the mail ships Koningin Emma and Prinses Beatrix of the Maatschappij Zeeland.
(Photo: © Fotoarchief "Kon.Schelde Groep" Vlissingen).
round the mail ships Koningin Emma and Prinses Beatrix of the Maatschappij Zeeland. (Photo: © Fotoarchief "Kon.Schelde Groep" Vlissingen).

For more O 21 class images check out the  O 21 class photo special.

1937

12 Apr 1937: K XXII is ordered, but the order might still be cancelled.

19 June 1937: The order for K XXII is now definite.

20 Nov 1937: K XXII is laid down at the K.M. De Schelde shipyard in Vlissingen.

At some stage (exact day/year unknown) during the construction the K XXII is renamed O 22.

1940

20 Jan 1940: O 22 is launched.

9 May 1940: O 22 conducts sea trials off Vlissingen.

10 May 1940: Germany attacks the Netherlands.

10 May 1940: O 22 is commissioned (still uncompleted) to the Royal Netherlands Navy.

10 May - 1 July or 23 May 1940: O 22 is under the command of Ltz. I  A.M. Valkenburg.

12 May 1940: O 22 sails, still uncompleted, from Vlissingen to Portsmouth (England) in order to escape from the invading German forces. She is accompanied by O 21 and tugboat Hr.Ms. B.V. 37 (ex Schelde). O 22 is unarmed, no torpedoes or deck gun ammo on board.

1 July - ?? Nov 1940: O 22 is under the command of Ltz. I  J.W. Ort.
H.M. Ort reports: 18 May 1940 - ?? Nov 1940: O 22 is under the command of Ltz. I  J.W. Ort.

20 May - June 1940: O 22 is completed at the Navy yard in Rosyth (Scotland). O 22 is also equipped with a loop-aerial.

3 June 1940: O 22 conducts her first submerged exercise off Spithead.

7 June 1940: O 22 and O 21 have to submerge in the harbour to protect themselves against German air raids.

8 June 1940: O 22 and O 21 depart from Southampton and sail to Portland, they arrive in the evening.

17 June - 22 June 1940: Escorted by the Dutch vessel Z 5 the O 22 and O 21 depart Portland and sail via Milford Haven to Dundee (Scotland). The ships arrive on the evening of the 22nd.

29 June - 28 July 1940: Escorted by the Dutch vessel Z 5 once again the O 22 and O 21 depart Dundee and sail to the Navy yard at Rosyth. At Rosyth a muffler problem was fixed. With the old muffler system sparks were sometimes visible when sailing at high speeds in heavy seas. At Rosyth the noises, generated by various machinery on board, was also checked. The ships return to Dundee on the 28th.

1 July - ?? Nov 1940: O 22 is under the command of Ltz. I  J.W. Ort.
H.M. Ort reports: 18 May 1940 - ?? Nov 1940: O 22 is under the command of Ltz. I  J.W. Ort.

28 July 1940: From now on the O 22 is attached to the 9th Flotilla in Dundee and is under British operational control.

30 July - 9 Aug 1940: O 22 patrols the North Sea.

30 July 1940 at 19:00 hrs: O 22 and O 21 depart Dundee for a war patrol.

31 July 1940 at 05:20 hrs: Early in the morning the O 22 and O 21 split-up.

1 Aug 1940 at 01:00 hrs: The O 22 arrives in her patrol area. Her patrol box is 56º10'N - 02º30'E.

1 Aug 1940 at 18:00 hrs: The O 22 hears screws at 215º and after several minutes a conning tower is spotted at 234º. The O 22 does not attack the U-boat because of the large distance. The spotted U-boat is probably the U 60. Some source report it could also be the U 62, but this U-boat arrived at Helgoland on the Aug 1.

2 Aug 1940 at 07:50 hrs: O 22 spots an other U-boat which is sailing a southern course. Once again the O 22 does not attack the U-boat because of the large distance.

2 Aug 1940 at 14:00 hrs: The O 22 hears several heavy explosions and at +/- 16:00 hrs she spots a U-boat, probably the U 37 or U 38 (most likely) which are departing for an Atlantic patrol. Position approximately 56º15'N-02º35'E. At 16:20 hrs the O 22 fires two torpedoes from a distance of 3600 meters. Both torpedoes miss, the U-boat changes course and increases her speed.

The heavy explosions are from a RAF plane. A Lockheed Hudson I ,from No. 220 Squadron Coastal Command 18 Group out of Thornaby, that is patrolling the Skagerrak. The Hudson attacks "two" German submarines U 37 and U 38 but only reports one. The bombs miss and the subs are not damaged.

We are still looking for a photo of U 37 and U 38. Do you have one ? Then please contact us at webmaster@dutchsubmarines.com.

8 Aug 1940 at 21:10: O 22 leaves her patrol area and heads for home.

9 Aug 1940: O 22 arrives in Dundee (Scotland).

17 Aug 1940: The Dutch Naval Commander, V.Adm. J.H. Fürstner, visits Dundee.  He decorates Ltz. I  J.F. van Dulm (O 21) and Ltz. I  J.W. Ort (O 22) with the "Bronzen Kruis" because they successfully took their boats to the U.K. when the Germans invaded the Netherlands.

This data is probably incorrect because H.M. Ort reports that his father never received the "Bronzen Kruis".

19 Aug - 31 Aug 1940: O 22 patrols off Norway. No attacks are made.

19 Aug 1940 at 20:30 hrs: O 22 departs Dundee and heads for her patrol area (59º30'N - 03º00'E). Screws are heard off Bell Rock, but no ship is spotted.

24 Aug 1940: O 22 arrives in her patrol area.

25 Aug at night: Searchlights are spotted in the direction of Utsire.

29 Aug 1940 at 22:00 hrs: O 22 leaves her patrol area and heads for home.

31 Aug 1940 at 10:30 hrs: The O 22 arrives in Dundee (Scotland).

8 Sep - 22 Sep 1940: O 22 patrols the North Sea. No attacks are made.

The patrol area (55º40'N - 02º20'E) is in the middle of the North Sea, North of Doggersbank. No ships, only some German planes, are spotted during this patrol.

21 Sep 1940 at 22:00 Hrs: O 22 leaves the patrol area and heads for home.

22 Sep 1940 at 08:05 Hrs: O 22 arrives in Dundee (Scotland).

6 Oct - 21 Oct 1940: O 22 patrols off Norway. No attacks are made.

The patrol area is the Norwegian coast off Kors Fjord between 59º50'N + 60º20'N and 03º30'E + 05º00'E.

7 Oct 1940: Heavy explosions are heard, but the source remains unknown.

9 Oct 1940 at 02:30 hrs: O 22 arrives in her patrol area.

Several screws are heard in the direction of the entrance of Kors Fjord, but not a single ship is spotted.

19 Oct 1940 at 18:00 hrs: O 22 leaves her patrol area and heads for home.

21 Oct 1940: O 22 arrives in Dundee (Scotland).

5 Nov 1940: O 22's commander receives Patrol Order #29 from Captain S9 for a patrol off the Norwegian coast. She is scheduled to depart at 15:00 hrs.

O 22 is lost with all hands, 42 Dutch and 3 British, during this patrol. In 1993 the wreck of O 22 is discovered.

Her patrol area is near the entrance of Skudesnes Fjord. In fact the patrol area is a circle with a 20 mile radius and its centre at 58º50'N-04º00'E. O 22 has to attack enemy submarines.

O 22 is ordered to take a route via 57º01'N-00º01'E and 59º21'N-01º50'E while on transit to her patrol area. Her waiting position is 59º21'N-03º24'E.

6 Nov 1940: O 22 is ordered to a new patrol area 18 miles off Lindesnes in Zone C1.

There are several possible explanations for the loss of O 22:

1) After the war the British historical section stated:
" The only incident which might throw light on the fate of O 22 took place on 8 Nov 1940 between Lister and Lindesnes in position 57°55'N-06°50'E. The German submarine-chaser 177 attacked a slowly moving bubble-path (after gaining hydrophone contact). Several depth charges (more than 24 depth charges in four attacks) were dropped. The mine sweeper M 1104 also dropped three depth charges. Only an air-swell of 25-30 m diameter and 1 m high was observed. No oil or debris was seen. The submarine was presumed to be sunk "

Comments Dutch Navy: The sinking of any sub is very doubtful since it was not confirmed by floating debris or oil. The O 22 was ordered to a position 18 nm off the coast, but the attack took place only 8 nm off the coast.

Comment British Admiralty: ". . . The attack was too close inshore to be in the vicinity of O 22. It is more probable that this submarine fell a victim to the northerly group of mines . . ."

2) The British Admiralty found it more likely the O 22 struck a German mine. This northern group of mines was laid by the Germans in July 1940.

Comments: Because this mine filed was located 60 nm west of O 22's patrol area the submarine could only have entered this mine field while on her way back to port. In this case one has to assume that the O 22 did not have the information (date 25 Jul 1940) about "Dangerous Area QZX 143".

3) 13 Nov 1940 at 19:49 hrs: O 23 surfaces and spots a fire at bearing N130°E, and a vague silhouette which could be of a ship.

Comments of the British Admiralty during WWII: " . . . this might be possibly connected with the so far unexplained loss of O 22 . . ."

Comments of the Dutch Navy: This seems very unlikely because the patrol areas of O 22 and O 23 were at least 70' apart.

4) The patrol report of the O 23 (patrolling nearby in the same time period) makes it clear that the weather was very bad at that time. So the O 22 could also have been struck by a drifting mine.

 

The names of the lost crew members are listed on the Lost Dutch Submarine Service Personnel page.

1993

13 Aug 1993: A survey vessel of the Norwegian Petroleum Directorate locates a wreck at 57º55'N - 05º31'E. 40 miles South-West of the Norwegian coast, water depth is about 180 meters. A ROV inspection shows that the wreck must be the O 22.

The following investigation shows three possible causes for the loss of O 22.

1) 7 Nov 1940: While transiting to her patrol area O 22 is struck by a drifting German mine.

2) 19 Nov 1940: While on her way home O 22 is struck by a drifting German mine.

3) But because no visual damage can be seen on the video footage it is also possible she sunk because of technical problems. The video footage shows clearly that the submarine must have been submerged prior to the accident.

1996

2 Nov 1996: A ceremony is held at the location of the O 22 wreck. Submarine Service Commander J.M. van der Ham tosses a wreath of flowers into the sea on behalf of the Royal Netherlands Navy. Van der Ham and the CO of submarine tender Mercuur (4) also toss a wreath on behalf of the Submarine Service Reunion Committee and the Karel Doorman Fund

 

For more O 21 class images check out the  O 21 class photo special.

For more information on the history of O 22 and her discovery in 1993, read the book Hr.Ms. O-22 (Dutch language).

 

 

 

 

 

 

Do you have any comments, corrections, additions or do you have material like stories, photos or other data available for this or any other page on this website? Then please do not hesitate to contact us at webmaster@dutchsubmarines.com

 


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