By Edwin Palmer Hoyt
Sunk via the Bismarck: The lifestyles and loss of life of the battleship HMS Hood
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Extra info for Sunk by the Bismarck: The Life and Death of the Battleship HMS Hood
He took stores for the embassy and consulate in Hood to Barcelona. He then sailed for Valencia^ having picked up Seaman Neil Inskter^ formerly of the SS Sarastone^ a distressed British seaman who had been in a Barce- 50 lona hospital that was under bombardment. The evacuation of refugees was now in full swings and Hood at Valencia helped. The admiral made arrangements for the evacuation of refugees from El Perello^ about eleven miles southwest of Valencia. There were still many British nationals in residence in war-torn Spain and they had to be looked after.
Day and day out the major elements of the fleet were in those northern waters^ cruising^ watching and guarding. Sometimes it was the North Sea. Sometimes it was the North Atlantic. There came a bit of excitement on 25 September when the submarine Spearfish was reported to be badly damaged^ lying off Horn Reefs near the Dogger Bank and unable to dive. Her position was close to the spot where in 58 Admiral Beatty had encountered Admiral Hipper and fought the action that kept the Kaiser's Hochseeflotte bottled up for the remainder of the last war.
But in the course of this operation3 the capital ships were sighted by German obserSpearfish vation planes^ the big Heinkel flying boats that were to poke about and pry around the ports of England for the next few years. Marshal Goering's Luftwaffe was notified3 a coastal bombing squadron was alerted^ and a handful of two-engined Heinkel bombers came to attack the big ships and sink them if they could. The Heinkels came in. The pom-poms began to send their smoke-puffs up into the air from the decks of Hood^ and the guns joined in.