Operation Granard

This was a British attack by the Special Operations Executive to destroy the loading tower and sink a laden pyrites cargo vessel at the outer end of Thamshavn pier in German-occupied Norway with the object of dislocating the transport of sulphur pyrites from the Orkla mines (6 December 1942/6 February 1943).

The three-man Norwegian party departed the UK on 6 December 1942 and landed on the Norwegian coast two days later, but it was then six weeks before a German vessel of sufficient size came alongside the pier. On 5 February the Norwegians attached limpet mines to the hull of this vessel, Nordfart. The detonation of the mines blew two holes in the hull of the ship, which was then run aground to prevent her from sinking. It only took a few months, however, before the ship was once again operational, so ‘Granard’ had little long-term effect.