For ten weeks Signalman Brooks served on board HMS Windermere (FY 207) under the command of Skipper Jack Mawer RNR. The vessel built at Smiths shipyard in the North East & was launched on the 21st July 1939 and commissioned on the 8th November 1939. Windermere belonged to the Lake class of minesweepers. Since April, Ordinary Signalman Brooks had been promoted to Signalman, a role he would retain until the end of the war.
The role of signalman would have used skills in visual signaling – passing and receiving messages by use of flashing light and flag hoists, plus the use of semaphore, morse code and Aldis Lamp.
HMS Windermere was one of four escorts to cover convoy UR 40, the others being HMS Angle, HMS Portsdown & HMS Yestor. Just 2 merchant ships were escorted, the Greek Agia Varvara at 2,433 tons and the Liesta at 2,500 tons. They departed Loch Ewe on 7th September 1942 arriving in Reykjavik five days later.
HMS Windermere was later involved in the capture of U boat U570 in the North Atlantic where it was towed to Iceland.