HMCS ATHOLL, a Revised “Flower” Class Corvette (Increased Endurance) of the 1942-43 Programme, was laid down on 15 August 1942 in the yards of Morton Engineering and Dry Dock Company of Quebec. She was launched on 4 April 1943 and commissioned on 14 October of the same year.
The corvette was named in honour of Campbellton, N.B., the name being suggested by Atholville, a community on the south bank of the Restigouche River estuary in Restigouche County, N.B. and two miles west of Campbellton whose name was used in order to avoid confusion with HM Destroyer Campbelton. It is interesting to note that there was a previous Atholl in the Royal Navy, this being a frigate of 28 guns built at Woolwich in 1820. She was on the North American Station from 1822 to 1824. By December 1863, she is no longer listed.
ATHOLL left Quebec on 11 November 1943 in company with a small local convoy sailing to Sydney, N.S. On arrival in that port, she joined another small convoy bound for Halifax. She reached her destination on the 15th. Extra work on the ship, along with certain repairs, held her in Halifax and in Pictou, N.S., for some time and she was not ready for sea until February 1944, when she was allocated to the Mid-Ocean Escort Force for duty with an escort support group, EG-9.
The duty of a support group was to reinforce the close escorts of convoys passing through their areas, but to break off and hunt to exhaustion any U-boat that menaced the convoys. They were made up chiefly of destroyers and frigates. ATHOLL did not remain long with the group for, as a corvette, she was more suitable for close escort and was only with EG-9 until a frigate was available. On 13 April 1944, she was allocated to C-4, one of the most famous for the Canadian groups in the Mid-Ocean Escort Force.
With the group, ATHOLL ran with convoys from St. John’s to Londonderry and back until December 1944, when she put in to Sydney, N.S. for a refit. In the following March, she visited the waters off Bermuda for post-refit “working-up” exercises.
Still a member of C-4, the corvette rejoined the group in April 1945 to resume the escorting of convoys to the United Kingdom. She paid her last visit to Londonderry in early June 1945. From the North Irish port, she sailed to Greenock, Scotland, to embark service personnel for Canada. Following arrival in St. John’s on the 16th of the month, she was transferred to the administration of the Naval Officer In Charge, Sydney. She remained in that port until 14 July, when she sailed out in company with the corvettes, HMC Ships TRAIL and DUNDAS, to proceed up the St. Lawrence to Sorel, P.Q. In the river port, she was paid off on 17 July 1945, turned over to the War Assets Corporation and later sold to K.C. Irving Limited of Moncton, N.B.