29 January 1941: Malta Warned of Security Breach

29 Jan

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Malta’s Governor and Commander in Chief has been warned of possible breaches of the security of telegram communications to and from the Island. The warning came today from the office of cable censors in London.  This is not the first time such an alert has been issued and all those involved in secret communications have been asked to take additional precautions to avoid further breaches.


Military motor cycles 2The Governor and Commander in Chief has written to the War Office expressing an urgent need for 100 additional motor cycles for Malta. Recent petrol shortages have been restricting vital military movements across the Island.  The shortage of motor cycles means that cars are used more than necessary, increasing the consumption of fuel.  Lt Gen Dobbie requested the additional vehicles be despatched to Malta by the first available ship, together with 11 month supply of spares including proprietary items.

According to War Office the current approved allocation of motor cycles for Malta as 190, of which the Island has 172, with another 46 already awaiting shipment to the Island. The Governor has confirmed his application for an increase to the allocation so that 104 more can be delivered as soon as possible.


Weather  Fine and cool.

0855-0942 hrs; 1042-1150 hrs; 1447-1452 hrs; 1643-1647 hrs; 1802-1835 hrs  Air raid alerts for approaching enemy aircraft which patrol round the east and south of the Island. Hurricane fighters are scrambled but there is no engagement and raiders do not approach the coast.  They are presumed to be either reconnaissance by new German squadrons or possibly minelaying.

Military casualties  Private Wiliam T Adams, 8th Battalion, Manchester Regiment.


ROYAL NAVY Ursula arrived to join First Submarine Flotilla.

AIR HQ 0725-1300 hrs Sunderland anti-convoy patrol eastern Tunisian coast. 0941 hrs Sighted one cruiser and three medium merchant ships with Cant Z501 escorting.  Air alerts in Malta delayed despatch of the striking force until too late to proceed. 

LUQA  0833-1013 hrs  69 Squadron (431 Flight): 1 Maryland reconnaissance Tripoli and Castel Benito. Tripoli 1 destroyer, 3 merchant ships, four Cant and to east of harbour 5 merchant ships; one is seen to strike a mine. Castel Benito 29 dispersed aircraft.  Whole aerodrome not photographed but recce shows 8 SM 79s, 9 JU 88s, four unidentified fighters.  Two fighters up failed to intercept Maryland.  Signs of building fortifications round Tripoli 18 miles radius.  Trapani aerodrome six large light camouflaged aircraft and two unidentified fighters.  1 Maryland reconnaissance Trapani and Palermo.


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Posted by on January 29, 2021 in 1941, January 1941


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