Operation FB (i)

This was the British naval destruction of the Norwegian radio stations on Spitsbergen and Bjørnøya (31 July/7 August 1941).

The undertaking was a successor to 'EF' (ii), and after the ships of Rear Admiral P. L. Vian’s Force 'A' (light cruisers Aurora and Nigeria, and destroyers Punjabi and Tartar) had met the 6,897-ton fleet oiler Oligarch, escorted by the anti-submarine trawlers Sealyham and Wastwater, to refuel, the destroyer Tartar was sent ahead to land a Norwegian officer at the radio station at Kap Linne on Spitsbergen. At the same time a Supermarine Walrus flying boat was launched to overfly Kap Linne and drop leaflets to alert the local Norwegians not to use the radio transmitter until instructed further. The Walrus also undertook a reconnaissance of the Isfjord.

In 'FB' (i) proper, the light cruiser Nigeria and destroyer Tartar entered the Adventfjord of Spitsbergen, finding 700 Norwegians but no German shipping.

The light cruiser Aurora and destroyer Punjabi reached the Gronfjord, where they found 1,800 Soviets, and at this time the destroyer Garland was engaged on an anti-submarine patrol at the entrance to the Isfjord.

On 1 August, Oligarch refuelled the ships at Spitsbergen, Garland and the 1,392-ton Norwegian steamer Dagny I joined the Oligarch group, and then Garland, Sealyham, Wastwater and Oligarch headed out to sea.

On 2 August a naval party was landed on Bjørnøya to demolish the radio station and embark its four Norwegian
operators.

The ships refuelled again on 3 August, and Oligarch was then sent with Garland and Sealyham to Seyðisfjörður in south-eastern Iceland. Dagny I was detached from the group on 3 August with Wastwater to the Færoe islands group.

The British warships returned to Scapa Flow on 7 August.