Founded 1962

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Aims of ISA GB

The International Submariners Association is an organisation to perpetuate the memory of submariners who have died in the service of their country, and to encourage social activities which promote comradeship among submariners worldwide.


Applications for membership are welcome from serving or ex-submariners of any nation. Click here for Membership Application

Membership Application Welcome

To the International Submariners Association Great Britain web site.

We are always happy to have new members join us.  If you are serving or ex-submariners of any nation, and are interested in joining us, or need more information on ISA GB events, and International congress, please contact us.

Four meetings per year, normally held in the Middle section of the UK.  Below are listed future event as known.Click on Event to see Hotel address.

Coventry 25th 26th  November  2016

EventMap Founded 1962

The Association was formed in 1962 and is non-political and non-denominational. The aim of the Association is to show friendship and goodwill towards each other. To arrange exchange visits for us and our children for a better understanding in the future. To remain loyal to our Sovereign and country at all times and to work for the ideals that World War II was fought – freedom of speech, expression and thoughts.

The I.S.A. is a world wide Association of Submariners, which includes members from Albania Argentina, Australia, Austria, Belarus, Belgium, Canada, Chile, Croatia, Czechoslovakia Estonia, France, Germany, Great Britain, Greece, Israel, India, Italy, Kazakhstan, Netherlands New Zealand, Norway, Peru,  Poland, Russia, Slovenia, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, the Ukraine ,and the USA.

Annually, a 3 day Congress is held, hosted by a different country each year, when Submariners and their ladies from all over the world enjoy getting together socially, meeting old friends and making new ones, dining and dancing, sightseeing etc.

The I.S.A.[GB] holds four meetings per year- in the Middle section of the UK, i.e. North, Stoke across to Norwich and South, Cardiff across to Southend. A hotel is chosen in the designated area, where we can have our meeting on the Saturday and dine together in the evening. These meetings have also become great social occasions where we meet up with old boat mates and enjoy a few drinks together. The ladies are also made most welcome – in fact, the I.S.A. encourages the ladies to take part in all their activities.

Further information about any of the above is available on request from the Secretary.

Every year a international congress is held in a host country.   

Next year it will be Croatia.


St Petersburg


HMS Dreadnought

The Royal Navy had been researching designs for nuclear propulsion plants since 1946, but this work was suspended indefinitely in October 1952[1] In 1955 the United States Navy completed USS Nautilus, the world's first nuclear-powered submarine. During subsequent exercises with the Royal Navy, Nautilus demonstrated the advantages of the nuclear submarine against British anti-submarine forces, which had developed extensive anti-submarine warfare techniques during the Second Battle of the Atlantic. The Admiralty appreciated the utility of such vessels and under the drive of the First Sea Lord, Admiral The Earl Mountbatten of Burma and the Flag Officer Submarines, Sir Wilfred Woods, plans were formed to build nuclear-powered submarines.

Although the plan was to build all-British nuclear submarines, much time would be saved by accepting US nuclear technology. The excellent relations between Admiral Mountbatten and US Navy Chief of Naval Operations Arleigh Burke, expedited obtaining that help. This was despite Rear Admiral Hyman Rickover, in charge of the American naval nuclear power program, being set against any transfer of technology; indeed, Rickover prevented Mountbatten inspecting USS Nautilus. It was not until a visit to Britain in 1956 that Rickover changed his mind and withdrew his objections.[1] Although Rickover wished to supply the third generation S3W reactor of the Skate class, Mountbatten exerted his influence and the entire machinery system for an American Skipjack-class submarine, with its fifth generation S5W reactor, was obtained.[1] This was known as the "American Sector" (see 1958 US-UK Mutual Defence Agreement). The hull and combat systems of Dreadnought were of British design and construction, although British access to the Electric Boat Company influenced the hull form and construction practices.

Dreadnought was laid down on 12 June 1959, and launched by Queen Elizabeth II on Trafalgar Day, 21 October 1960. The reactor was embarked in 1962 and Dreadnought made her first dive, in Ramsden Dock, on 10 January 1963. She commissioned on 17 April 1963.

During Dreadnought's construction, Rolls-Royce, in collaboration with the United Kingdom Atomic Energy Authority at the Admiralty Research Station, HMS Vulcan, at Dounreay, developed a completely new British nuclear propulsion system. On 31 August 1960, the UK's second nuclear-powered submarine was ordered from Vickers Armstrong and, fitted with Rolls-Royce's PWR1 nuclear plant, Valiant was the first all-British nuclear submarine.


Congress 2016 Croatia Pula

TBA February 2017

HMS Upholder (P37) was a Royal Navy U-class submarine built by Vickers-Armstrong at Barrow-in-Furness. She was laid down on 30 October 1939, launched on 8 July 1940 by Mrs. Doris Thompson, wife of a director of the builders. The submarine was commissioned on 31 October 1940. She was one of four U-class submarines which had two external torpedo tubes at the bows in addition to the 4 internal ones fitted to all boats. They were excluded from the other boats because they interfered with depth-keeping at periscope depth.

She was commanded for her entire career by Lieutenant-Commander Malcolm David Wanklyn, and became the most successful British submarine of the Second World War. After a working up period, she left for Malta on 10 December 1940 and was attached to the 10th Submarine Flotilla based there. She completed 24 patrols, sinking 93,031 tons of enemy shipping including the Maestrale-class destroyer Libeccio after the Battle of the Duisburg Convoy, two submarines (the Tricheco and the Saint Bon), three troopships, six cargo ships, an auxiliary ship and an auxiliary minesweeper. Wanklyn was awarded the Victoria Cross for a patrol in her in 1941, which included an attack on a particularly well-defended convoy on 24 May 1941 in which Upholder sank the 17,879 GRT Italian troop ship SS Conte Rosso. On 28 July 1941 she damaged the Italian cruiser Giuseppe Garibaldi. On 18 September 1941 she sank two troopships within hours of each other: the sister ships MS Neptunia (19,475 GRT) and MS Oceania (19,507 GRT).

Upholder also damaged the Italian light cruiser Giuseppe Garibaldi (9500 tons), the German freighter Duisburg (7,389 GRT), the French tanker Capitaine Damiani (4,818 GRT), the Italian freighters Dandolo (4,964 GRT) and Sirio (5,223 GRT) and destroyed the wreck of the German freighter Arta (2,425 GRT) already grounded after the battle of Tarigo convoy.

Upholder was lost with all hands on her 25th patrol, which was to have been her last before she returned to England. She left for patrol on 6 April 1942 and became overdue on 14 April. On 12 April she was ordered, with HMS Urge and HMS Thrasher to form a patrol line to intercept a convoy, but it is not known whether she received the signal.

Malcolm David Wanklyn VC DSO and two Bars

HMS Tally-Ho was a British submarine of the third group of the T class. She was built as P317 by Vickers Armstrong, Barrow, and John Brown & Company, Clydebank, and launched on 23 December 1942. She has been the only ship of the Royal Navy to bear the name Tally-Ho, probably after Tally-ho, a hunting call.

Second World War service

While commanded by Captain Leslie W. A. Bennington, Tally-Ho served in the Far East for much of her wartime career, where she sank 13 small Japanese sailing vessels, a Japanese coaster, the Japanese water carrier Kisogawa Maru, the Japanese army cargo ships Ryuko and Daigen Maru No.6, the Japanese auxiliary submarine chaser Cha 2, and the Japanese auxiliary minelayer Ma 4. She also damaged a small Japanese motor vessel, and laid mines, one of which damaged the Japanese merchant tanker Nichiyoku Maru.

On 11 January 1944, Tally-Ho, then based out of Trincomalee, Ceylon spotted the Japanese light cruiser Kuma and destroyer Uranami on anti-submarine warfare exercises about 10 miles (16 km) northwest of Penang. Tally-Ho fired a seven-torpedo salvo at the Japanese cruiser from 1,900 yards (1,700 m), hitting her starboard aft with two torpedoes, and setting the ship on fire. Kuma sank by the stern in the vicinity of 05°26?N 99°52?E.

Tally-Ho sank the German-commanded U-boat UIT-23 (formerly the Italian submarine Giuliani), just off the western mouth of Malacca Strait on 14 February 1944.

On the night of 24 February 1944 Tally-Ho was ordered back to the Sembilan Islands, and while zig-zagging on the surface at night charging the batteries, lookouts spotted two wakes ahead. Believing there was a possibility of the two vessels being friendly (both Truculent and Tactician being in the area), Tally-Ho immediately altered course to avoid a collision with the rapidly approaching vessels. On making a challenge with the Aldis lamp the vessels responded by altering course straight towards them and dropping depth charges, leaving no doubt they were unfriendly vessels. At this point the closest ship fired a shell which passed dangerously close over Tally-Ho's conning tower before the attacker passed closely by the submarine and then turned for another attack. During this encounter Tally-Ho had been unable to dive due to the proximity of the attackers and the shallowness of the waters in the straight, in addition, diving would have presented the attacking ships with the opportunity to ram or depth charge the submarine. In the darkness Tally-Ho manoeuvred to a parallel course to the approaching attacker and the enemy vessel passed closely by the submarine, a loud hammering and tearing noise being heard as the ship passed, the vessel being identified as a Hayabusa-class torpedo boat of 600 tons. As the attacker disappeared in the murk Tally-Ho took on a list to port and assumed a marked bow-down attitude. Bennington decided that the batteries would have sufficient charge to risk diving which Tally-Ho then did. Before closing the conning tower hatch, he noticed that the submarine had taken on a 12-degree list. Once submerged, the crew took stock of the damage, and apart from smashed light bulbs and gauge dial glasses, Tally-Ho appeared to be seaworthy, and she remained submerged until 06:30 of 24 February when Bennington brought Tally-Ho to periscope depth and observed his attacker making unusual manoeuvres apparently searching for the submarine on the starboard quarter some 4 miles (6.4 km) off. Tally-Ho remained dived for the following 12 hours before surfacing after dark at 18:25. Upon surfacing it was noticed that the submarine's list had increased to 15 degrees, and it was possible to see the damage to the submarine's port ballast tanks which were all open at the top and beyond further use. With transfer of fuel and water from various tanks and moving of stores and torpedoes, the bow-down attitude was reduced to 4 degrees, and the three-day journey to Trincomalee commenced. This was uneventful apart from encountering a monsoon during the passage of the Bay of Bengal and the possibility of encountering a Japanese submarine close to home. Arriving at Trincomalee harbour on 29 February 1944, Tally-Ho missed her escort and found herself amongst Admiral James Sommerville's battle fleet at exercises. Later, upon examination in dry dock prior to repairs, the extent of the damage to Tally-Ho's port ballast tanks became apparent. The rotating screws of the torpedo boat had run the length of the tanks, chewing large holes in them, phosphor bronze fragments of the attacker's propeller blades being discovered inside. Post-war enquiries learned that their attacker's behaviour after the attack had been due to a combination of Tally-Ho's lowered port bow hydroplane having pierced the torpedo boat's hull, and the vessel's port screw having been shorn of its blades almost down to the hub.

On 29 October 1944, Tally-Ho departed Ceylon carrying an OSS-sponsored three-man Free Thai team bound for Siam. On the way, Tally-Ho tried unsuccessfully to intercept a German submarine. The journey was further delayed by a search for downed Allied airmen near the Straits of Malacca. The Free Thai team was finally landed on Ko Kradan, Trang Province, on 9 November.

Post War service

Tally-Ho survived World War II and continued in service with the Royal Navy. In 1953 she took part in the Fleet Review to celebrate the Coronation of Queen Elizabeth II. She was sold to Thomas W. Ward Ltd and scrapped at Briton Ferry, Wales on 10 February 1967.

The R-class submarines were a class of 12 small British diesel-electric submarines built for the Royal Navy during World War I, and were forerunners of the modern attack submarine, in that they were designed specifically to attack and sink enemy submarines, their battery capacity and hull shape being optimised for underwater performance.

With a submerged speed of 14 kn (26 km/h; 16 mph), the class set an underwater speed record not broken until the experimental Japanese Submarine No.71 of 1938, which was capable of more than 21 kn (39 km/h; 24 mph) submerged.

Ordered in December 1917, the R-class were designed to be faster underwater than on the surface, achieving a submerged speed of 14 kn (26 km/h; 16 mph) versus a surfaced speed of 9 knots (17 km/h). They were well-streamlined, having no external ballast tanks, casing, or deck gun, and a streamlined spindle-shaped hull of circular cross-section[2] (not reproduced until the Los Angeles-class) which tapered sharply towards the stern and allowed only for a single screw. The bulbous bow contained five sensitive hydrophones and the lightened conning tower was also well-streamlined.

Thirty-five percent of the space inside the pressure hull was occupied by machinery. A single 8-cylinder 480 hp Diesel engine was installed for surface propulsion, while high underwater speed was given by two large electric motors arranged one behind the other to drive the single propeller shaft, and powered by a 200-cell battery of the same type fitted to J-class submarines. The large battery was, however, sufficient for only about an hour at full power. In addition, the engine took a full day to charge the batteries, using half its power. Charging was therefore undertaken in harbour, using a supply of electricity from the shore or from special battery charging vessels.

Despite being designed for maximum underwater performance, the R-class submarines were extremely difficult to control submerged, especially at high speeds. Surfaced, they had poor seakeeping and were slow. Minor modifications were made to R4, the only submarine of the class to survive into the 1930s, which made it more manageable on the surface, but reduced its submerged speed to a maximum 13 kn (24 km/h; 15 mph).


The R-class were the first Royal Navy submarines to be fitted with six bow torpedo tubes, number of torpedoes being considered more important than range or size of warhead carried when attacking U-boats. The torpedo tubes were originally the smaller 18 inches (460 mm) but later changed to 21 inches (530 mm).[4] As designed, one spare torpedo was allowed for, but in operation six reloads were carried in place of the senior Ratings' accommodation. It was originally intended to fit a 4 inch gun on the foredeck, but this was dropped due to the adverse effect it would have had on submerged speed.

The eleventh HMS Vanguard of the Royal Navy is the lead boat of her class of Trident ballistic missile-armed submarines. The submarine is based at Faslane, HMNB Clyde, Argyll, Scotland.

Vanguard was built at Barrow-in-Furness by Vickers Shipbuilding and Engineering Ltd (now BAE Systems Submarine Solutions), was launched on 4 March 1992, and commissioned on 14 August 1993. She has two crews, "Port" and "Starboard".

The submarine's first commanding officer was Captain David Russell.  In February 2002, Vanguard began a two-year refit at HMNB Devonport. The refit was completed in June 2004 and in October 2005, Vanguard completed her return to service trials (Demonstration and Shakedown Operations) with the firing of an unarmed Trident missile. During this refit, Vanguard was illegally boarded by a pair of anti-nuclear protestors.

On 4 February 2009, Vanguard collided with the French submarine Triomphant in the Atlantic. She returned to Faslane in Scotland, under her own power arriving on 14 February 2009.


February 2017




May 2017




19th -20th August 2016

Holiday Inn Hotel Filton

Filton Road


BS16 1QX


25th - 26th November 2016

Best Western

Weston Hall Hotel

Weston Lane,


CV12 9RU