Beaching capital ships at Normandy

Playing around with an idea in my head here...

The Japanese plan for operation Ten-Go was to beach Yamoto on Okinawa as an unsinkable beach defense.

Was anything similar ever considered for Normandy? Several dozen ships were intentionally sunk to form the Normandy Mulberry harbors including the hulks of HMS Centurion and the French battle ship Courbet.

The old battleships Renown and Resolution were in England as training ships. From what I can tell online, they could move under their own power but had their main guns scavenged for other vessels.

Would it be feasible to run them aground at the first high tide after the troops land? The secondary guns could provide fire support and every German weapon fired at the battleships isn't being fired at unarmored landing craft.

Afterwards the ships become part of the Mulberry.

Later edit: I was thinking about Revenge but had a brain fart and typed Renown in the first post. As others have pointed out, HMS Renown was still being used in combat roles. Revenge was clapped out and had her main guns removed shortly before D-Day.
 
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It sounds like it might have been a good plan. Older light cruisers might have been a better idea since turreted 6" guns could have been of great use in the first several days.
 
Would it be feasible to run them aground at the first high tide after the troops land? The secondary guns could provide fire support and every German weapon fired at the battleships isn't being fired at unarmored landing craft.
Afterwards the ships become part of the Mulberry.

But the guns still need crews to man them, unless you up armor the turrets, the Germans might destroy the turrets and guns.
 
But the guns still need crews to man them, unless you up armor the turrets, the Germans might destroy the turrets and guns.

But what's the difference, than those same Germans to fire at guys whose thickest armor is a Dog Tag?

If you can't afford to lose them, you shouldn't have them in the first place
 
Understood that the turrets and crews would take casulties, but they would still be better protected than the men on an LST or the beaches.

Probably some large inland gun would get eventually the position dialed in and the ships would have to be abandoned.
 
The Allies had control of the strait, why would they need to beach ships to provide fire support when floating ships can do the same thing?

The Japanese wanted to beach their vessels so they couldn't be sunk...but that's not a fear in Overlord
 
The Allies had control of the strait, why would they need to beach ships to provide fire support when floating ships can do the same thing?

The Japanese wanted to beach their vessels so they couldn't be sunk...but that's not a fear in Overlord

As shown at Omaha, the offshore battleline wasn't doing the Job.

Some DDs and DEs came in very close to rectify that.

Those Tin Cans had far less armor than the BBs expended as breakwaters.
 
The only heavy guns the Germans had at Normandy was the 4-gun battery at Longes-sur-Meur (sic). These were 152 mm guns that were knocked out during the day by two British and one French cruiser mounting 5.25" and 6" guns. A beached heavy cruiser with 8" guns could have probably done the job a lot faster. The German 5.9" could penetrate 4" of armor at 10 km. Do not know if 152 mm guns can penetrate heavy cruiser turrets. Probably cannot penetrate disposable battleship turrets.
 
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I think it's a bad plan. There's confusion of two ideas in this thread. First that Omaha was a failure and too high casualties. But the invasion took place at low tide precisely to avoid the hedgehogs from tearing up the ship bottoms. Also to be ruthless, your capital ships are worth a lot of lives, and there are hundreds of sailors on a capital ship. Landing ships got sunk by mines the same mine can sink a capital ship then you are SOL lost one thousand men instead of 50.

There's other ways to improve performance. Have a less complicated plan so that one or two landing craft off the mark doesn't throw the whole plan off and objectives based on targets of opportunity instead. Release the DD tanks closer so they don't get flooded. Don't tell the bombers to drop "a few seconds later" so the bombs actually hit the beach. Actually bombard with more than a handful of ships for hours and hours on end. Beaching a ship with hundreds of sailors who could all die with an exploded magazine isn't the way to save hundreds of soldiers. Also I would much rather have capital ships ready to breakup troop and panzer concentrations.
 
As shown at Omaha, the offshore battleline wasn't doing the Job.

Some DDs and DEs came in very close to rectify that.

Those Tin Cans had far less armor than the BBs expended as breakwaters.

The only heavy guns the Germans had at Normandy was the 4-gun battery at Longes-sur-Meur (sic). These were 152 mm guns that were knocked out during the day by two British and one French cruiser mounting 5.25" and 6" guns. A beached heavy cruiser with 8" guns could have probably done the job a lot faster. The German 5.9" could penetrate 4" of armor at 10 km. Do not know if 152 mm guns can penetrate heavy cruiser turrets. Probably cannot penetrate disposable battleship turrets.

I guess I just don't understand why you need to beach these vessels instead of just having them be very close? Why is a beached heavy cruiser with 8" guns better than one that's floating? Accuracy?
 

TFSmith121

Banned
The Atlantic Wall held for all of a morning;

Playing around with an idea in my head here... The Japanese plan for operation Ten-Go was to beach Yamoto on Okinawa as an unsinkable beach defense. Was anything similar ever considered for Normandy? Several dozen ships were intentionally sunk to form the Normandy Mulberry harbors including the hulks of HMS Centurion and the French battle ship Courbet. The old battleships Renown and Resolution were in England as training ships. From what I can tell online, they could move under their own power but had their main guns scavenged for other vessels. Would it be feasible to run them aground at the first high tide after the troops land? The secondary guns could provide fire support and every German weapon fired at the battleships isn't being fired at unarmored landing craft. Afterwards the ships become part of the Mulberry.

The Atlantic Wall held for all of a morning; the 1st and 29th Divisions, which had the roughest time of any of the assault divisions on D-Day, were across the beach and inland before lunch.

Did the men who fought and died at Omaha deserve respect? Yes.

Was there any chance the Germans could hold the beach? No, not if history is as it was up to June 6.

And Renown was a battlecruiser; in June, 1944, she was operating with the Eastern Fleet raiding the NEI. Resolution was a training ship in the UK.

Best,
 
The Atlantic Wall held for all of a morning; the 1st and 29th Divisions, which had the roughest time of any of the assault divisions on D-Day, were across the beach and inland before lunch.

Did the men who fought and died at Omaha deserve respect? Yes.

Was there any chance the Germans could hold the beach? No, not if history is as it was up to June 6.

And Renown was a battlecruiser; in June, 1944, she was operating with the Eastern Fleet raiding the NEI. Resolution was a training ship in the UK.

Best,

I think he's referring to older ships.
 
That sounds like a massive waste of resources for an objective that was rapidly taken by far less desperate measures than in OTL. Plus there's the fact that you'd need to clear your now-wrecked ships off the beach to make room for incoming supplies after the fact.
 
I guess I just don't understand why you need to beach these vessels instead of just having them be very close? Why is a beached heavy cruiser with 8" guns better than one that's floating? Accuracy?

It's going to act, in Gamer Terms, as a Meat Shield.

many of the AT sized guns will be shooting at that, than Higgins Boats

Grounding means it won't sink. and will provide cover for vessels behind it.

A predreadnought like Courbet is perfect.
Lots of armor that will keep out much of sub 6" fire, esp. if you fill much of the void spaces and bunkers with concrete, and let her keep two of her shafts and some of her boilers. She won't need to run in at 21 knots, after all.
 
That sounds like a massive waste of resources for an objective that was rapidly taken by far less desperate measures than in OTL. Plus there's the fact that you'd need to clear your now-wrecked ships off the beach to make room for incoming supplies after the fact.

loss of 500 feet of beach space isn't much of a loss.
 
Bad idea. Once beached and the tide goes in, you're exposing the essentially unprotected sides to German artillery and anti-tank fire.

HMS_Royal_Sovereign,_midship_section_(Warships_To-day,_1936).jpg


Here's a photo of Warspite beached.

Cadgwith-Warspite-hms_warspite_aground.jpg


Any operational gun emplacement will be firing straight into the exposed hull below the belt.

longues1.jpg


Even the latest RN battleships had near to zero protection to their magazines against horizontal fire. There's supposed to be 33 feet of water there!

KGV-Armor_Scheme.jpg
 
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It's going to act, in Gamer Terms, as a Meat Shield.

many of the AT sized guns will be shooting at that, than Higgins Boats

Grounding means it won't sink. and will provide cover for vessels behind it.

A predreadnought like Courbet is perfect.
Lots of armor that will keep out much of sub 6" fire, esp. if you fill much of the void spaces and bunkers with concrete, and let her keep two of her shafts and some of her boilers. She won't need to run in at 21 knots, after all.

Pretty much that thought. It is a stupid waste for an active warship, but the admiralty had removed the ships from combat roles. Beaching draws fire and only risks a skeleton crew. Fire until you run out of ammo or the German fire becomes too dangerous, then abandon the ship.

(I see now that I made a mistake: I was thinking about Revenge but had a brain fart and typed Renown in the first post. As others have pointed out, HMS Renown was still being used in combat roles. Revenge was clapped out and had her main guns removed shortly before D-Day.)
 
The example given for this folly is the Yamato beaching at Okinawa. It was a desperate defensive measure by a spent, defeated navy with only enough fuel to get to Okinawa. They were defending Okinawa, not invading. The closest comparison is if the Tirpitz found some more fuel and beached at Normandy, or tried.
 
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