Archive: Nov 2010

  1. HMS SIKH – Be Like Lions

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    The HMS SIKH was a Tribal Class destroyer of the Royal Navy.

    It was the third ship to carry the SIKH name – the first being a small torpedo boat in 1892, and the second an S-Class destroyer from 1918 – 1926.

    What was so special about this ship was that it was inspired by the Sikh – despite their being no Sikhs serving on it! A decision born from the Admiralty’s desire to name a Tribal class of warships after various martial races within the British Empire.

    The crew compliment of 190 would not have included any Sikhs themselves. The ship had its home port in the UK and so personnel who served on board would have been British. The casualty pack from the sinking of the HMS Sikh in 1942 also shows that no Sikh ‘Singh’s served on board.

    Images showing Sikhs in Naval uniform on ships purporting to be the HMS Sikh are therefore wrong – they’re more likely to be ships from the Royal Indian Navy which fell under the Admiralty’s auspices until 1945 and did have recruitement of Sikhs.

    Besides this, the Sikh ethos would have been apparent to the crew – the ship moto was ‘Sicut Leonis’ or ‘be like lions’ which would have been engrained into the mindset of her crew. And her badge bore a gold lion representing a Sikh with a silver Sikh quoit behind it.

    The Sikh had 8 Battle Honours, which included action against the infamous German battleship the Bismarck – it helped in the hunt for it in 1941.

    Sadly, the Sikh sunk in 1942 at Tobruk.

    The story of this ship will be told by Dot Hyphen Productions who will release a short film about it on as well as a research publication in 2011.

  2. HMS Sikh

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    We are currently finishing our research into the HMS Sikh 1939 – 42, if you have any memories of it or pictures please comment below.

  3. Remember them

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    Today was Remembrance Sunday.

    People all over the UK paused and offered their thoughts and prayers to those who have served our country.

    In the Midlands, I was producing ITV Central News – I suggest having a look at Phil Brewsters report here as it’s a superb tribute:

    It includes a short clip of Sikhs in Birmingham paying tribute to the honourable dead.

  4. Armistice Day 11/11/2010

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    Today was Armistice Day, I had the pleasure of joining servicemen and women at the Sikh Chaplaincy Conference in London to network and hear about British Sikh history.

    It was a pleasure to be able to introduce various elements of the proceedings including introducing two very notable individuals – the Adjutant General of the British Army and an engaging historian Kiran Kaur Rana.

    As with the rest of our nation, the act of Remembrance was undertaken and silence held to remember those that fought and died for us during the Great War.

    The event also saw the attendance of Sikh War Veterans, a rare breed of warrior becoming rarer still every passing year. Let us always remember their heroics.

  5. Welcome to this new blog

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    Welcome to this new blog.

    Sikhs@War is an online film project bringing productions about British Sikh history to a worldwide audience – it’s free and it’s accessible to all!

    This blog will be a forum to interact and engage on the films we made, the history behind them and those heroes who fought for Great Britain during World War 1 and 2.

    Please use it in a positive and proactive manner.

    Dot Hyphen Productions