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Flight Sub Lieutenant John Hoare


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Just watched a doco from Ocean Wreck Investigation regards German U-boats around the UK.

UC-66 they claim was the only U-boat sunk in WW1 by a plane.

The pilot was Flight Sub Lieutenant John Hoare. His plane suffered numerous hits from MG fire as he attacked according to the doco

and he pressed home the attack with 4 100lb bombs.

I can't find any foreign awards to him and a quick LG search came up empty.

Not sure if they gave his correct name or not but does anyone have anything on him being awarded a British decoration?

Appreciate any info.


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Flying Curtiss H.8 Flying Boat Ser. No.8680 on 21 August 1917 55 miles SSW of Scilly. Based on Tresco.

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Thank you both, the award was not mentioned on the show.

He had to get something.

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If the attack by Hoare and Forsyth was on 21 August 1917, then Hoare's DSC, notified in the Gazette of 20 July 1917, was clearly not for this effort.

I have it that UC-66 was sunk on 27 May 1917 after having been attacked by Flt. Sub-Lieut William Louis Anderson and CPO John Frederick Tadman in Curtis H.8 'Large America' flying boat 8656; the flying boat was hit by machine gun fire from the U-boat.  Anderson received the DSC - the notification in the same Gazette as Hoare's - while Tadman received the Conspicuous Gallantry Medal, also Gazetted on 20 July 1917, his citation reading:

C.P.O. Mech., 2nd Gr., John Frederick Tadman, O.N. 271984 (Ch.).
For conspicuous gallantry in climbing out on the wing of an aeroplane to plug a leak in the radiator.  He remained in this position for a period of twenty minutes, thus
enabling the aeroplane to return safely to her base.


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Hi Peter, 

The other chaps have answered your question. However, if you are interested in the perception at the time of the number of U-boats destroyed then do look up the Internet Archive for Hallam's "Spider Web" (pseudonym 'PiX') for a more atmospheric account of the submarine hunting. (Am on my mobile so can't access the link here to share). 

Derry/Londonderry chap R Frederick Lea Dickey obtained bars to his DSC for such actions that have been subsequently discredited as decisive operations. 

For another perspective on the submarine hunting perhaps consider the unfortunate Limerick chap Cleeve. His Large America conducted a near-perfect hunting/killing operation in conjunction with surface vessels, yet his American observer has the equivalent of a triumphal arch erected in his honour and the equivalent of tickertape parade whilst they struggled to decide upon a mention in despatches for Cleeve. (His family made a small fortune on tinned and powdered milk products and so had limited sympathies in Ireland as to their overall wartime balance sheet). 

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I must have just seen the same show.

He claimed two hits on UC 66 which sunk her.

I did wonder how two small bombs could do that, other then crack the presure hull and she sunk after submerging?

But the show shows the boat wreck cracked up (present day) possibly after setting off a Mine stowed on board (UC 66 was a Mine U Boat)

But I did read she had already laid her mines, so why would she have any mines on board unless she hadn't laid them all?

Which they didn't explain either.

All in all the show seamed half full or half empty with the wrong man/aircrew who sunk the boat they found?

The U Boat Net shows

27 May 1917 - Bombed and sunk on May 27, 1917 north of Round Island, Isles of Scilly, by RNAS Curtis H.12 flying boat No. 8656 piloted by William Anderson. A corresponding wreck was located in 2009. 23 dead


Loss reassessed in 2013 by Innes McCartney. Anderson was awarded the Distinguished Service Cross for the attack. He would later become an Anglican bishop.

Previously recorded fate
Sunk on June 12, 1917 by depth charged from HMT Sea King, followed up by the explosion of her own mines at 49°45’N 5°10’W. This explanation requires an excessively long patrol length.



Edited by stevebecker
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