How the Bismarck was sunk

German warship Bismarck being launched

This photo was contributed by club president Eric Walkom. It shows the launch of Bismarck on February 13, 1939 and is from the original files of Blohm and Voss of Hamburgh where she was built - Credit: Submitted

The last battle of the famous German warship Bismarck was recounted to the Babbacombe and St Marychurch Probus Club by president Eric Walkom.

The battleship's final encounter took place in the Atlantic Ocean in May, 1941.

Eric said that the Bismarck sailed in a westerly direction from Germany towards Norway with the task of attacking British commercial shipping.

With the use of detailed graphic and images, Eric charted the timeline of May 18 to May 27, which included the deployment of the various HMS battlegroups, and which culminated in the eventual sinking of the Bismarck whilst it had been heading towards Brest.

Significant damage had been caused to the ship on May 24 in the battle off Denmark. The final action had consisted of a number of airstrikes by torpedo bombers based on HMS Ark Royal, disabling the vessel's steering gear and enabling an attack by the British battleships, HMS King George V and HMS Rodney, supported by cruisers, which sank her on May 7.