Ivan Henry William Ayers

#69315, b. 1923, d. 1943

Individual's Timeline

Birth1923Ivan Henry William Ayers
Death1943Ivan Henry William Ayers1

Primary events

Military Career

Records show that Ivan Henry William Ayers served in the armed forces. He was in the Navy, and died serving in HMS Forward (a shore base) 16th April 1943. Son of George Coleman Ayers and Lucy Ayers; husband of Rita Ayers, of Netherton, Frodsham, Cheshire. HIs name is recorded in the Newhaven Cemetery, Sussex.

HMS Forward in Newhaven was the Coastal Forces base. Royal Navy Coastal Forces craft operated mainly in the English Channel and North Sea waters, especially in the build up to the Normandy invasion of 1944. They were also used in the Mediterranean and Norwegian campaigns. They raided St. Nazaire and Dieppe. They were used to attack German convoys and their S-boat (known to the Allies as "E-Boat") escorts, carry out clandestine raids and landings, and pick up secret agents in Norway and Brittany. The coastal craft were manned by various Allied nationalities including Dutch, Norwegian, Canadian, Australian, and New Zealanders.

A number of Captain-class frigates were configured to operate as "Coastal Forces Control Frigates" (CFCF). Operating with Coastal Forces officers embarked and responsible for controlling and providing radar support to groups of Coastal Forces motor torpedo boats intercepting German motor torpedo boats in the North Sea, these frigates were involved in the destruction of at least 26 E-Boats.

By 1944 Coastal Forces numbered 3,000 officers and 22,000 ratings. Altogether there were 2,000 British Coastal Forces craft. Affectionately known as the Royal Navy's "Little Ships", they fought over 900 actions and sank around 400 enemy vessels, including 48 E-boats and 32 midget submarines. They fired 1,169 torpedoes, shot down 32 enemy aircraft and carried out many mine laying operations. One hundred seventy of the "Little Ships" were sunk or otherwise destroyed


Locus Operandi

Family of Ivan Henry William Ayers and Rita Littler


  1. Find my past web sites, online http://www.findmypast.com or http://www.findmypast.com.au, First name(s)      IVAN H W
    Last name      AYERS
    Death year      1943
    Rank      Ordinary Seaman
    Ship or unit      FORWARD
    Record source      GRO War Death Naval Ratings Indices (1939 to 1948)
    Volume      1
    Page      129
    Record set      British nationals armed forces deaths 1796-2005
    Category      Life Events (BDMs)
    Subcategory      Deaths & burials
    Collections from      United Kingdom.