Ajax Public Library Digital Archive
Ajax Veterans Street Dedication: Chatfield Drive
Comments (3)
Comments from Users
Posted by [Name Withheld], 12 June 2013 at 12:01

This is my grandad. I knew he was in the battle of the river Plate, but have just googled this and am over the moon to find so much info about him on the internet.

Posted by Isabelle Chatfield, 27 December 2014 at 6:40

I was about to say exactly the same thing!!! Its wonderful. Im looking forward to visiting the town of Ajax and Chatfield drive.

Posted by Paul Clapperton, 6 March 2016 at 10:07

This was my grandad I was I was ten when he died but still can rember him , he was a keen photographer and we still have albums of his travels of the world as he was in the Royal Navy .

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Ajax Veterans Street Dedication: Chatfield Drive

Street Name: Chatfield Drive Name of Veteran: Fred Chatfield 1914-1975 Rank: Telegraphist, Able Seaman Ship Served: HMS Ajax Date of Service on Ship: 1937 to 1939 Year of Visit/Dedication: June 2005 Veteran or Family Visit: Lillian Teasdale, sister and family Veteran of the Battle of the River Plate: Yes Died at Battle: No Fred joined the Royal Navy on his sixteenth birthday in 1930 and by 1937 he had joined HMS Ajax. During the Battle of the River Plate the radio mast was destroyed and while still under fire Fred reconnected communications and was awarded the Bronze Oak leaf. King George VI presented the Oak leaf to him and others in January1940. In late April, 1940 Fred led a team of men to Norway to set up radio stations for communication between theNorwegians and the British. He led a boarding party to take over a French warship, was on an armed merchant ship which sank in 10 minutes after receiving one bomb and spent several months on a Motor Torpedo Boat laying mines in the North Sea. Fred was awarded the Distinguished Service Order after the war and became a tutor at Sheffield Naval College. His last position in the Navy was as Chief Radio Supervisor at the Admiralty in London. He took early retirement at 59 due to ill health and died two years later of lung cancer. Fred used to say “The Navy is my life and my religion”.