Nino Bixio

Discussion in 'Prisoners of War' started by Brian S, Aug 15, 2008.

  1. Brian S

    Brian S Guest

    The Nino Bixio was torpedoed by H.M.Sm. Turbulant at 15:30hrs on the 17th of August 1942 .Position 36:35N - 21:34E . She was carrying 5,000 Allied P.O.W.

    My figures show there were 230 Commonwealth Casualties,118 of them from New Zealand. The ship was also carrying French one of the Holds that was torpedoed.

    The Italian Destroyer Saetta took her in Tow and arrived at Navarino two days later. Some of the survivors were taken to Greece by the T.Bs.Polluce and Calliope.
  2. liverpool annie

    liverpool annie New Member

    Are you looking for somebody on there Brian ? heres a list of names .... but they say one name was mentioned twice .... hence only 117 !


    Annie :)
  3. CXX

    CXX New Member

    NINO BIXIO (August 17, 1942)

    Italian troop transport (7,137 tons) sunk in the Mediterranean between Libya and Sicily, by the British submarine HMS Turbulent. She was carrying New Zealand prisoners of war and around 400 French P.O.W.s captured in North Africa. The Nino Bixio was hit by two torpedoes, one exploding in the prisoners hold and killing many. The injured were brought up on deck and attended to by medical officers. The badly damaged Nino Bixio was taken in tow by one of its escorting destroyers and towed to Navarino in southern Greece. There the dead prisoners were buried, the rest being shipped, via Corinth, to a prisoner of war camp near Bari in Italy. A total of 118 New Zealanders lost their lives.
  4. Brian S

    Brian S Guest


    Thanks for that Annie,
    the casualty list was originally created when the book"No Honour No Glory"was being researched in the mid 80s. The Co Authors Spence Edge and Jim Henderson enlisted the help of the C.W.G.C. to compile a list of New Zealand Casualties with D.O.D. 17/8/42.

    I had a list prepared by C.W.G.C. in the late 90s and sent a copy to New Zealand. This could have been used as Ptes. LANG and POI are duplicated on my list . This still leaves me with 96 with no known grave and 19 buried in Athens with the D.O.D. as 17th. There were also three who died of wounds some days later.

    I had a further problem creating a total casualty list as the Troopship The Princess Marguerite was sunk on the same day. This gives the casualties with no known grave from both sinkings to show when trying to form some idea of who had died on which ship. The C.W.G.C. were unaware of the incidents at the time the Registers were created.
    As said a true total figure for the incident is difficult due to the French casualties not being recorded by C.W.G.C. There were just 7 known who were serving with the S.A.S.

    Files containing enquiries into those lost in such sinkings was only opened last October.
  5. Brian S

    Brian S Guest

    Sorry Geoff,
    there were also 38 Australian Casualties.Two of them R.A.A.F. All are Remembered at El Alamein.

    The Nino Bixio was patched up and Towed to a Channel near Venice and sunk as a Blockship. She was raised in the early 1950s and totally refurbished so she could be used again. In the 1960s she visited New Zealand where a Service of Rememberance was held on her fore Deck. Survivors were present.
  6. Antipodean Andy

    Antipodean Andy New Member

    I recall Geoff spoke to one of the survivors here in Melbourne or am I getting mixed up? Spidgeman? WOuld be interesting to know more about her post war "career". Maybe, just maybe she wasn't scrapped?

    Moment torpedoes struck still burns for survivor - New Zealand news on

  7. Brian S

    Brian S Guest

    Yes the mans name is Bill Rudd.
    I have been in touch with him for some years along with a friend in New Zealand ; Charles Watkins.There may be an Article in The Dominion Post today as they interviewed Charles a few days ago.

    When the ship called in the New Zealand Port it was noticed some of her plates were Rippled where she had been caught in the ice at some time.
  8. Brian S

    Brian S Guest

    Sorry Andy,
    didn't read the attachment. What hasn't been said is that 47 members of the British Army died on the ship. 36 Remembered at El Alamein and 11 buried in Greece.
    Both Bill and Bob Rogers Escaped into Switzerland. Bob who served with the D.L.I. wrote his story in "Sixty Bonus Years".
  9. Hugh

    Hugh New Member

    NINO BIXIO official number 2327

    An interesting post, Brian detailing another tragedy of war.

    Cargo ship NINO BIXIO official number 2327 built in 1941 by Ansaldo at yard no. 323, Sestri Ponente for S.A.Cooperativa di Nav Garibaldi, Genoa

    She continued in service after the torpedoing as already mentioned and was eventually broken up in La Spezia on 28th November 1970.

    There is a photo reference to her at this link NINO BIXIO

  10. Brian S

    Brian S Guest

    Thanks for that Hugh,
    can't remember where I got my copy from,but it does appear to be of a different origin. I also have a photo of the Sestriere which sailed in the same convoy,she was also carrying P.O.W.
    There was a typo in my first post.For 5,000 read 3,000.
  11. Antipodean Andy

    Antipodean Andy New Member

    Thanks Brian and Hugh, an excellent "all points" thread.

    Love the title of Bob Rogers' book. Very apt.

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