Herbert Barker born on the 24 Mar 1924 in Shotton, according to his record on the H.M.S. Southern Flower, https://uboat.net/allies/merchants/crews/person/20456.html and was the son of George Thomas & Lucy Barker (nee Leach), who I believe, married in a Civil Ceremony at Hawarden (Flintshire (Mold) HAW/04/59) in 1913.
There are births on the North Wales BMD website that may be his brothers and sister, but on the 1939 Register, taken on the 29th September 1939, there is only one brother that is seen, the other three entries are redacted and therefore closed, so I do not know who they are, but could very well be Herbert’s siblings. I have baptisms of George Ambrose Barker in 1914, Elizabeth Lucy in 1915 and Florence May Barker in 1917, if you would like to see them, all baptised in the Parish of Hawarden. Their addresses were in Sealand and in 1917 George Thomas Barker was a Soldier, so was in the Great War.
I have searched for George Thomas’s Attestation Records, but as I do not know his Regiment or Regimental no. I was not successful in finding any.
I have no information on Herbert’s early years, so if anyone has any information, it would be greatly appreciated to make sure he is not forgotten.
The 1939 Register show parent’s George Thomas & Lucy with their son Eric, born in 1933, and the redacted persons living at Davies Cottages Pentre , Hawarden. George is an Electrical Contractor, born on the 9th January 1881, Lucy, his wife, was born on the 11th May 1885, with Eric, born 28th July 1933. It could be that Herbert was already in the war, but when he either enlisted or was conscripted, I don’t know.
We do know that Herbert ended up serving on H.M.S. Southern Flower in the Royal Naval Patrol Service, as shown on the Commonwealth War Graves Commission website.
According to the website https://uboat.net/allies/merchants/ship/3464.html – Ships hit by U-boats, the H.M.S. Southern Flower was sunk by U-1022 (Hans-Joachim Ernst) on the 3rd March 1945.
History. – Completed in October 1928 as whaler Southern Flower for Southern Whaling & Sealing Co Ltd, Port Stanley, Falkland Islands. In March 1940 requisitioned by the Admiralty and converted to the A/S trawler HMS Southern Flower (FY 332). 1941 purchased by The South Georgia Co Ltd (Chr. Salvesen & Co), Leith.
Notes on event – At 11.32 hours on 3 March 1945 HMS Southern Flower (FY 332) (Skr William George Brown, RNR) was hit by a torpedo from U-1022, disintegrated and sank almost immediately four miles 322° from Skagi, Iceland. 25 crew members were lost, only the commander survived the sinking.
Aboard HMS Southern Flower (FY 332) when hit on 3 Mar 1945 was Herbert Barker:- https://uboat.net/allies/merchants/crews/person/20456.html
Herbert Barker – Roster information listed for Herbert Barker
RNPS (LT/JX 374080). British
Born 24 Mar 1924 Shotton, Flintshire
Died 3 Mar 1945 (20)
U-1022 – Type – VIIC/41
Ordered 13 Jun 1942
Laid down 6 May 1943 Blohm & Voss, Hamburg (werk 222)
Launched 13 Apr 1944
Commissioned 7 Jun 1944 Kptlt. Hans-Joachim Ernst
Commanders – 7 Jun 1944 – 9 May 1945 Kptlt. Hans-Joachim Ernst
Career – 1 patrol
7 Jun 1944 – 31 Jan 1945 31. Flottille (training)
1 Feb 1945 – 8 May 1945 11. Flottille (active service)
Successes 1 ship sunk, total tonnage 1,392 GRT
1 auxiliary warship sunk, total tonnage 328 GRT
Fate – Surrendered on 9 May 1945 at Bergen, Norway (Waller & Niestlé, 2010).
Transferred to Lisahally on 30 May 1945.
Operation Deadlight (post-war Allied operation, info)
Sank for unknown reasons on 29 Dec, 1945 at 55.40N, 08.15W.
This boat was fitted with a Schnorchel underwater-breathing apparatus in June 1944. Read more about the Schnorchel and see list of fitted boats.
Men lost from U-boats
Unlike many other U-boats, which during their service lost men due to accidents and various other causes, U-1022 did not suffer any casualties (we know of) until the time of her loss.
Herbert came from a large family and was obviously loved and missed as his name was put forward for him to remembered on the Hawarden War Memorial.