Operation Sankey

This was a British landing by a Royal Marine party (‘Wellington’ Force) at Cheduba on Cheduba island, off the south-west coast of Ramree island in the Arakan western coastal region of Burma (26/31 January 1945).

In an undertaking which fell within the overall concept of ‘Talon’ and was preceded by 'Matador' to take Kyaukpyu on the northern tip of Ramree island, the task force which departed Akyab on 24 January for 'Sankey' comprised the destroyers Norman and Raider and the frigates Spey and Teviot, supported by Rear Admiral A. D. Read’s Task Force 65 comprising the light cruisers Newcastle, Nigeria and Kenya and the destroyers Paladin, Rapid and Australian Nepal (carrying Vice Admiral Sir Arthur Power, commander of the East Indies Fleet).

The cruisers carried 500 marines, who were landed on Cheduba island on 26 January. Air support was provided by the escort carrier Ameer, with the light anti-aircraft cruiser Phoebe acting as the local fighter direction ship. Before the landing, the assault area received a gunfire bombardment from Norman, Raider, Paladin and Rapid. On coming ashore, the marines found the island deserted, and it was soon decided that there was no operational value in maintaining a garrison force on the island, even though Brigadier I. C. A. Lauder’s Indian 36th Brigade arrived on the following day.