Operation Cygnus

This was a British naval rescue mission by Lieutenant R. F. Seddon’s MGB-718 of the 15th Motor Gun Boat Flotilla to recover two Special Intelligence Service personnel, together with the Norwegian civilians who had been sheltering them, from Batalden island off the west coast of German-occupied Norway in the area to the north of Bergen (28/29 May 1944).

MGB-718 had previously operated from Dartmouth on the coast of south-west England for seven sorties, supporting the French resistance forces with special forces personnel and supplies, across the English Channel to the north coast of Brittany in German-occupied north-western France, and had then operated from Shoreham and Newhaven, on the south coast of England, for a series of seven ferry trips to Dieppe and Ostend, in German-occupied France and Belgium respectively. In the middle of these ferry missions, the boat moved to northern Scotland for two missions in support of the resistance forces in German-occupied Norway. These were 'Cygnus' launched from Lerwick in the Shetlands islands group, and 'Aquarius III' launched from Aberdeen on the east coast of the Scottish mainland.