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Royal Navy Casualties

Broadway, Harold T:

By March 27, 2014October 4th, 2021No Comments

Broadway, HBiographical Notes:

Lt-Commander Harold Broadway features prominently in my book, “Blood in the Sea: HMS Dunedin and the Enigma Code”. His son (also Lt-Commander), Chris Broadway, very generously gave me access to all the letters his father had sent from HMS Dunedin. They give a fascinating picture of life on board Dunedin and also an insight into Chris’ father’s thinking during his many months away from his family before he was lost in the sinking. I am very grateful to Chris. Although there is much in the book about Harold Broadway, Chris wrote the short summary below of his father’s wartime action.

Stuart Gill




Broadway was running the practice he had taken over from his father in Dorchester, when war broke out in 1939 and despite a small family and the practice to be run, and paid for, he felt that it was his duty to help deal with Hitler.  He therefore joined the RNVR and was sent to Chatham for the course that was called (and still is) the “Knife fork and spoon course” – designed to convert him from a Country Practice to a seagoing Doctor.  The instruction was continued in HMS MALABAR (Bermuda) and he was then given a “Pierhead Jump” to HMS DUNEDIN, as the second Doctor, probably because the man he relieved had chronic seasickness.  This was three days after his family, after a bad crossing in a convoy in which a number of ships were sunk, arrived to join him.  They did not see him again as the ship was sailed in a hurry for anti-invasion duties in the south of England as France collapsed.

On arrival in the UK the Principle Medical Officer, a Surgeon Commander, was replaced by an RN Surgeon Lieutenant, who lasted less than a week and was then replaced sick by another Surgeon Lieutenant RNVR, who because he was a few months junior left my father as the PMO of a Cruiser.
 He was an experienced doctor and rather than replace him with a Surgeon Commander, to which the ship was entitled, Captain Lovatt reported that he was well satisfied with his performance as PMO (Including a very nasty acute appendix that had to be removed in a bad seaway) and arranged for him to be promoted to Acting Surgeon Lieutenant Commander as a special case, although my father never knew he had been promoted as the ship was sunk and he was killed before the news reached HMS DUNEDIN, and his family only knew because the telegram announcing his loss used his new rank. 
When Harold Broadway’s son, Lt-Cdr Chris Broadway died in 2021, the Society posted this message on the home page of this website:

In Memoriam: Lt-Cdr Chris Broadway

UPDATE: Chris’s funeral was held on Friday 16th July at Torbay Crematorium. Chris had asked that any donations should be made to The Gurkha Welfare Trust. You can make a donation at 

It is with deep regret that the Dunedin Society announces the death of Lt-Cdr Chr. is Broadway (RN) Ret. Chris passed away early on the morning of 28th June 2021, aged eighty-five. The Society offers its sincere condolences to Chris’s wife Sue and his family. Chris was a young boy when his father, Lt-Cdr Harold Broadway, ship’s surgeon, was lost in the sinking of HMS Dunedin. Later in his life, he became a major driving force behind the formation of our Society and an inspiration to all of us involved in the Dunedin project. He was a source of invaluable advice to me and all my friends in the Society and he was dedicated to keeping the memory of HMS Dunedin and her men alive. Without him and Sue, I doubt the Society would have got off the ground. 

We shall all miss him.

Stuart Gill, HMS Dunedin Society