As the vessel lay anchored in Nazi-occupied Norway, a novel way was found to attack her. After human torpedoes failed, four-man midget submarines or X-craft carrying four-ton charges were used to penetrate the fjord defences. Six craft attacked on September 22, 1943.
Edmund ‘Eddie’ Goddard, helmsman of X6, was awarded the Conspicuous Gallantry Medal (CGM) for his role in the operation that left the Tirpitz seriously damaged but led to his capture under a hail of small arms fire.
It was the only CGM awarded for the attack on the Tirpitz, and one of only two ever awarded for X-craft. Last sold by the recipient at Sotheby’s in October 1983, it reappeared for sale at Dix Noonan Webb (20% buyer’s premium) on February 27-28 where it made £70,000.