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He was skipper and navigator of the MV Krait during its audacious 4000-mile round trip – Commando raid Operation Jaywick – in September 1943, on Japanese-occupied Singapore Harbour. It resulted in the the sinking and burning of seven enemy ships totalling 37,000 tons.

Carse’s medal group including a 1 Commando Association Cross of Valour, bronze, one clasp for Jaywick, with integral top Commando bar, was estimated at £20,000-40,000 at Dix Noonan Webb (24% buyer’s premium) on December 3, along with Carse’s knuckle knife and a Japanese flag said to have been displayed aboard the Krait during the operation.

In January 1943 Carse had received an invitation for an interview about a secret mission. Still not fully aware of what he had committed himself to, he was now part of a team within the Z Special Unit – a commando arm largely comprised of Australian Army and Royal Australian Navy personnel organised by Special Operations Australia (SOA), modelled on the Special Operations Executive in London.


The crew and operatives of Operation Jaywick (Lt Carse is shown front row, far left).

A 15-man team would travel to the harbour in a vessel disguised as an Asian fishing boat. They would then use collapsible canoes (folboats) to attach limpet mines to Japanese ships.

The plan worked and Carse was in command as the Krait waited for the three canoe crews to rendezvous two weeks later. He had been told not to wait for stragglers but ignored that and saved the whole group, despite the huge danger. He was Mentioned in Despatches for his bravery.

The lot came from the Warwick Cary collection, who had bought it from the private museum of Sydney-based collector Bill Connell. It sold for £38,000 to an unidentified institution.

The Krait itself still survives and is now part of the collection of the Australian National Maritime Museum in Sydney.