Naval History Homepage and Site Search



World War 1 at Sea - Royal Navy Vessels Lost and Damaged




HMS Ark Royal, seaplane carrier
(Maritime Quest - click photographs for enlargements)

on to  October 1915


or back to contents



(1) Ships in BOLD capitals are those sunk or otherwise lost; in lower case bold are attacked and/or damaged. Variations in the published information are in brackets starting with the abbreviation for the source  e.g. (dx - in 58.35N, 01.56E)

(2) Warship information is generally in the order - type, class, displacement tonnage, launch year, armament, speed, crew, captain if known, unit, operation if known. How sunk or damaged, lives lost (in brackets: source abbreviations starting with + for original HMSO)

(3) Auxiliary and hired vessel information is in the order - gross tonnage/build year, owner, registration port or place of ownership/management, crew if known, master or skipper, voyage and cargo, conditions if known. How sunk or damaged, lives lost (source abbreviations starting with + for original HMSO)

(4) Click for Notes, Abbreviations and Sources

(5) Link to Royal Navy casualty lists



JULY 1915

North Sea

Cameo, Admiralty trawler, 172/1898, Hull-reg, hired 2/15, 1-12pdr (ap - 3pdr), Skipper Albert Sayers, on patrol with trawlers Sea Ranger and Eastward Ho!, all Peterhead-based. July - Cameo sighted U-boat, headed in its direction and was fired at, returned fire and hit three times, Eastward Ho! came up and submarine headed away on the surface; skipper wounded and awarded DSC, gunner the DSM (D/ap)

Tuesday 1 July

North Sea

Hampshire, armoured cruiser, Devonshire-class, 7th CS Grand Fleet. Reported a torpedo fired at her in Moray Firth, confirmed as attacked by U.25. Twelve destroyers and local patrol vessels sent to hunt for the attacker, but without success (Cn/ge/gf)

Atlantic off NW Scotland

Patuca, Admiralty armed merchant cruiser, 6,103/1913, hired 21/11/14, 10th CS Northern Patrol, on line C to NW of Hebrides on lookout for the blockade-running Swedish SS Oscar II, sighted and stopped early morning. Oscar II hit Patuca crushing her own bows and then crashed alongside, hull-to-hull before Patuca's propeller holed the Swede's engine-room. Patuca's plates bulged and propeller flange bent, made seaworthy with collision mats, shoring and cement infill, made for Clyde as ordered at 14kts. Oscar II taken in tow by AMC Digby and ABS Royal Scot, assisted by destroyers Fury and Staunch, but sank after two days (D/bi/gf/gr)

Atlantic off SW England

Two auxiliaries (and three more British vessels) captured and sunk by U.39 (Walter Forstmann) off Cornwall:

CAUCASIAN, Admiralty chartered red-ensign oiler, 4,656/1899, Petroleum SS Co (Lane & Macandrew), London-reg, Mr F Robinson, London for New Orleans with creosote. Sunk by gunfire 80 miles S of Lizard Point (L - 60 miles SW of) (+L/Lr/Mn/te/un)

INGLEMOOR, Admiralty collier, 4,331/1912, Moor Line (W Runciman & Co), London-reg, Mr A Stonehouse, Barry for Malta with coal and general cargo. Sunk by torpedo 75 miles SW by W of Lizard Point (L - 60 miles SW of) (+L/Lr/Mn/te/un)


Friday 2 July

UC.2 believed rammed by SS Cottingham in North Sea off Yarmouth, otherwise own mines (un - own mines on 30 June, Cottingham probably hit the wreck)


Sunday 4 July

Atlantic off S Ireland

Anglo-Californian, cargo ship, nitrate carrier converted to horse transport, 7,333/1912, Lawther Latta & Co/Nitrate Producers SS, not armed, Montreal for Avonmouth with 927 horses for Western Front, 150 crew, master, Lt Frederick Parslow RNR aged 60. U.39 (Walter Forstmann) (dx - U.38; ge - U.20 or U.39) surfaced about 0800 a mile or more away on port beam 90 miles SW of Queenstown (L - in 50.15N, 9W; dx - 50.10N, 09W), ship turned stern on and went to full speed, reached 14kts, submarine opened a steady fire about 0900 frequently hitting, Anglo-Californian continued to manoeuvre in an attempt to escape while transmitting SOS’s. Ordered at 1030 by the U-boat to stop and abandon ship, the master decided to do so, then in response to his signals, destroyers Mentor and Miranda requested him to delay as long as possible. He got under way again, but now U.39 opened a heavy fire wrecking the bridge, all the port-side lifeboats and hitting the superstructure. By the time the U-boat had closed to 50yds, the master was dead and the Germans fired on anything that moved. Throughout the action, the master's eldest son, Fred Parslow was at the wheel or what remained of it. When the destroyers arrived, U.39 dived away and Anglo-Californian was brought into Queenstown on the 5th; 21 lives lost including Lt Frederick Daniel Parslow RNR who was awarded the Victoria Cross. His son and the chief engineer received the DSC and others MID. Sunk 9 June 1918 (+L/Mn/dx/ge/ms/un/vc) (Casualty list – Lt Parslow only)


Monday 5 July

Mesopotamian Campaign

Sumana, armed launch-tug, 2-3pdr, Lt W Harris, supporting advance along River Euphrates towards Nasiriya. Turkish shell cut main steam pipe during the day, out of action, back next day (Rn/D)


Tuesday 6 July

Barents Sea

AFRICAN MONARCH, Admiralty collier, 4,003/1898, Monarch SS Co, Glasgow-reg, Cardiff for Archangel with coal, general cargo. Mined, laid by Meteor, sank at entrance to White Sea around 1½m E of Toryaneff Is and 9 miles S of Cape Orloff; two crew killed (+L/Lr/Rn/Mn)


STRATHGARRY, Admiralty trawler, 202/1906, Aberdeen Steam Trawling & Fishing, Aberdeen-reg A97, hired 6/15 (D/He - as boom defence vessel; wi - armed patrol trawler), Admiralty No.5, based at Scapa Flow, Skipper Isaac McFarlane RNR. Ships of 2nd Battle Squadron returning to Scapa Flow anchorage at 0330, passing through boom, battleship Monarch collided with and sank her (wi - in 58.45N, 03.05W); no lives lost (He – one man drowned) (+Lr/C/D/He/dk/wi; ADM.137/129)

off NW Scotland

EDISON, Admiralty trawler, 196/c1896, Hull-reg H430, F & T Ross, hired 1915 as minesweeper (D - 12/14; wi - as armed patrol trawler), Admiralty No.395, Sub‑Lt Frederick Townend RNR who had only joined ship that day, now night-time, heading along NW  shore of Isle of Lewis, bound for Carloway. Ran aground on Port Arnol, Lewis, may have steered wrong course or compass affected by new gun installation, but apparently not keeping sufficient look-out. Trawler wrecked  (wi - exact position unknown, “somewhere on the Isle of Lewis”, around 58N, 06W); no lives lost (+Lr/C/D/He/dk/wi; ADM.1/8427/198)

German East Africa

German East Africa and Rufigi Delta - from "The Navy Everywhere" by Conrad Gato
(believed out of copyright), click maps to enlarge

Click the title for the story - Chapter 2

Mersey (Cdr R Wilson) and Severn, river monitors, Humber-class, 1,520t, 2-6in/2-4.7in/4-3pdr, 140 crew, after operations off Belgian coast, both ships were due for service in the Dardanelles in March 1915. Sailed 28 April from Malta with fleet messenger Trent, four tugs and a collier, reached Aden 15 May and Mafia Island 3 June, made good defects, fitted with extra protection and exercised with spotting aircraft. German light cruiser Königsberg moored down the Kikunja channel, northernmost tributary of Rufuji delta and 10 miles from the sea. Mersey and Severn entered the channel at 0520 on 6th, immediately came under 3pdr, pom-pom and machine gun fire from shore defences, both hit, but undamaged, whalers Echo, Fly, Childers swept and sounded ahead, light cruisers Weymouth and Pyramus followed in support. By 0630, 6 miles or 11,000yds from Königsberg, anchored, waited for spotting aircraft and opened fire, Königsberg also had spotting station nearby and replied with salvoes. Neither monitor hit for an hour until at 0740, shell struck Mersey's foremost 6in gun shield and put gun out of action, shortly holed near the waterline and pulled back 1,000yds. Severn continued for half an hour, then both ships waited until a second spotting aircraft arrived at 1330, returned to original position and fired until 1530, Königsberg hit around 6 times. Withdrew to prepare for next attempt five days later; Mersey’s casualties were 4 ratings killed, 2 DOW and 2 wounded (Rn/Cn/dk)


Friday 9 July

South African Campaign - Surrender of last German forces in South-West Africa, at Tsumeb


Sunday 11 July

German East Africa

Mersey and Severn, river monitors, Humber-class, some damage and badly worn by shoot on the 6th, only now ready to resume attempt to destroy the Königsberg assisted by aircraft spotting. (dx - 15th) - Again fired on when entering the Rufuji River, both hit but little damage, starting at 1230 they took turns to fire although Königsberg fired back, at 1252 there was a large explosion, Königsberg was then apparently blown up and scuttled at 1346, firing continued until 1420 to complete her destruction, monitors recalled at 1430; two men slightly wounded on Mersey. Other ships taking part included light cruisers Chatham, Dartmouth, Challenger, Hyacinth, Pioneer (RAN), Pyramus, Weymouth, and armed merchant cruiser Laconia; Royal Navy Single Ship Action - Mersey and Severn v KÕNIGSBERG 1915 (Cn/Rn/dx)

see Despatch, dated 15 July 1915 in London Gazette, No.29395 - Destruction of German cruiser “Königsberg”


Monday 12 July

Gallipoli Campaign - British offensive at Helles to 13th


Tuesday 13 July

Barents Sea

T. R. Ferens, Admiralty trawler, 307/1913, Hull-reg, hired 5/15 as minesweeper, one of six trawlers fitted out at Lowestoft to sweep German mines laid in June in White Sea on the route to Archangel, departed 22 June, arrived Alexandrovsk, Murman coast on 6 July, started sweeping successfully. Mined, damaged off one of the headlands (D/sc)


Thursday 15 July

North Sea

AGAMEMNON II, Admiralty trawler, 225/1907, Consolidated Steam Fishing & Ice, Grimsby-reg GY187 (He – Hull), hired 8/14 as minesweeper, Admiralty No.19, Harwich-based, Skipper Frederick Sibley RNR. With other Harwich sweepers clearing minefield discovered that morning, and in fact laid that morning by UC.1 (Egon von Werner). Lt-Cdr Hugh Archer of HMS Actaeon, Sheerness Torpedo School, embarked and in command of operation. Recovering sweep when a mine fouling the wire was pulled into the ship and exploded, sank off the Shipwash Sands, off Orford Ness (wi - in 51.57N, 01.36.45E); 9 ratings lost (+L/Lr/C/D/He/dk/sc/un/wi; ADM.1/8427/203)


Sunday 18 July

Italian Front - Second Battle of the Isonzo to 3 August


Tuesday 20 July

U.23 sunk by combination decoy trawler Princess Louise/submarine C.27 off Fair Isle

North Sea

RHIANNON, Admiralty yacht, 126/1914, hired 15/9/14 as auxiliary patrol vessel, 2-3pdr, Pennant No.055, Lt-Cdr George Wellburn RNR. On patrol in Thames Estuary between Longsand and Kentish Knock sands with Admiralty trawler Strathspey, approaching wreck of Norwegian steamer Peik mined and sunk on 5 July. Detonated mine which destroyed the forepart of the vessel, leaving after part afloat before it too sank, off Longsands, off Clacton (wi - in 51.40N, 01.29E). The mine had not been left over from the field that sank Peik and which had been swept; it had been laid by UC.3 (Erwin Weisbach); Cdr Wellburn, 1 officer, 1 rating and 2 MMR killed by explosion (+J/L/C/D/He/dk/sc/un/wi; ADM.1/8427/194, ADM.1/8427/206)


Wednesday 21 July

North Sea

BRITON (1), Admiralty trawler, 196/1906, John Lewis, Aberdeen-reg A101, hired 2/15, armed, Admiralty No.1170, patrol vessel, 13 crew, Skipper Peter Christie RNR, probably Harwich-based, guardship for outer group of unarmed minesweepers ordered to sweep area around Longsand LV where HMS Rhiannon was lost the day before, most of the crew below having their evening meal. Mined at 1715, mine laid by UC.3 (Erwin Weisbach) on 5 July, “stern broke off, the bow went up into the air and was then hidden by a column of water and smoke. When this cleared away there remained of the ship nothing”, sank 13 cables SW of Longsand LV, off Clacton (wi - in 51.40N, 01.29E); Skipper and 10 ratings lost (wi - all 13 crew lost; He/ap - three crew saved) (+L/Lr/C/D/He/ap/dk+/sc/un/wi; ADM.1/8427/194, ADM.1/8428/207)

Eastern Mediterranean

DOROTHEA, naval motor boat, ex-high speed pleasure motor boat, 33grt, 60ft, 11kts, hired 1914, serving with Motor Boat Reserve as HM Motor Boat No 203, 2-3pdrs, also rifles/small arms, manned by RNVR crew, reached Mudros around now as deck cargo, due to serve with flotilla of six motor boats carrying out local patrol duties off Turkish coast including Smyrna (Izmir) area, Lt Henry Holloway RNVR in command. Probably destroyed before she went into action, taking on fuel, spillage and explosion, burnt out; no lives lost (+D/He/ap/dk; ADM.137/775)


Thursday 22 July

Atlantic off NW Scotland

One armed merchant cruiser attacked (and two trawlers captured and sunk) off Hoy Head, SW Orkneys by U.36 (Ernst Graeff):

Columbella, Admiralty armed merchant cruiser, 10th CS. Attacked by U.36, W of Orkneys (Mn - in 60.26N, 04.42W) (Rn/Mn/ge)


Friday 23 July

English Channel

WATERLILY, Admiralty drifter, 82/1907, Banff-reg BF595, hired 5/15 as net drifter, Admiralty No.2171, Skipper George Slater RNR. Fitted out at Devonport and now sailing for Granton to take up duties, in collision with trawler Ouse at 0500 off St. Alban's Head, Dorset (wi - in 50.30N 02.00W) and foundered; no lives lost (+D/He/dk/wi; ADM.137/132)


Saturday 24 July

Mesopotamian Campaign - British-Indian forces forces advancing from Kurnah/Al Qurnah along the increasingly shallow River Euphrates drove the Turks out of Nasiriya, which was occupied next day. Old stern-wheelers Shushan, Muzaffri and Messudieh (all manned and armed respectively by deeper-draught sloops Espiegle, Odin and launch tug Miner) and armed launch Sumana took part.

U.36 sunk by Q-ship Prince Charles in Atlantic off N Scotland, first success by submarine decoy ship working alone; Prince Charles was not believed damaged in the action.


Sunday 25 July

North Sea

E.16, submarine, E-class, 667/807t, 1-12pdr/5-18in tt, Cdr C Talbot, sailed Yarmouth 24th for Ems, next morning kept under by air patrols. Apparently trapped in anti-submarine net near Borkum Riff LV, struggled to surface to find Zeppelin overhead, bombs dropped as she struggled clear, got free an hour after first entanglement. Sank V.188 off Terschelling next day (Rn/Cn/D)


Monday 26 July

German destroyer V.188 torpedoed and sunk by submarine E.16, 50 miles N of Terschelling


Saturday 31 July

Atlantic off SW England

Two Admiralty fleet messengers sailing in company from Glasgow under sealed orders, bound for Dardanelles, heavy seas with SW force 8 gale blowing, sunk by U.28 (Georg-Günther Freiherr von Forstner) off the Scillies:

TURQUOISE, ex-coaster, 486/c1892, Glasgow-reg, W Robertson, hired 2/7/15, Pennant No.Y4.30, 15 crew, Lt John McNicol RNR, sailing for Bizerta in ballast. In the afternoon sighted surfaced submarine on starboard bow which rapidly approached, ordered to stop but attempted to ram, U.28 opened fire around 1600 making several hits, ship immediately abandoned and sank at 1615, 60 miles SW of Scillies (wi - attacked in 49N, 07.08W, sank 40 miles SW of, in 49.00N 07.00W); one life lost, probably Merchant Navy (He/wi - chief engineer killed by gunfire, two crew wounded), survivors picked up by patrol trawler, landed at St Mary’s next day (+L/Lr/C/Cn/D/He/dk/wi; ADM.137/1130)

NUGGET, ex-coaster, 405/1889, Glasgow-reg, W Robertson, hired around 23/7/15, Pennant No.Y4.38, 15 crew, Lt Charles Amburger RNR. U.28 approached at speed and ordered crew to abandon ship in spite of conditions, when close enough Nugget went to full-speed and tried to ram, U-boat opened fire hitting the hull with 14 shells, sank at 2100, 45 miles SW of (wi - in 49.05N 06.58W); no lives lost, all crew picked up by Dutch sailing vessel Annetta at 2200, transferred next morning at 0545 to patrol boat, landed at St. Mary's next day at 1030 (+L/Lr/C/Cn/D/He/dk/wi; ADM.137/1130)




U.26 probably sunk in August/September by Russian mine in Gulf of Finland


AORANGI, Admiralty blockship, 4,268/1883, 389ft, Union SS Co, Dunedin (NZ)-reg, chartered as non-commissioned RAN supply ship 8/14, purchased by Admiralty 1915 for use at Scapa Flow. August - Scuttled as part of No.1 Barrier, Kirk Sound, between island of Lamb Holm & Mainland (wi - in 58.53.26N, 02.51.42W). Wreck refloated in 1920 (wi - resunk in Holm Kirkyard) (Lr/D/wi)


Sunday 1 August

Sea of Marmara - Submarine E.11 (Cdr Nasmith RN) raided Constantinople Harbour


Monday 2 August

Atlantic off SW England

PORTIA, Admiralty fleet messenger, ex-coaster, 494/1906, Liverpool-reg, South Wales & Liverpool SS, hired c23/7/15, Pennant No.Y4.36, Lt-Cdr Langton Bromwell (Rtd). Captured by U.28 (Georg-Günther Freiherr von Forstner), sunk by gunfire 70 miles S of Scillies (He – SW of); no lives lost. The third fleet messenger sunk in three days by U.28 (+L/Lr/C/Cn/D/He/cs/dk/un; ADM.137/1131)


Wednesday 4 August

North Sea

C.33 (below, sister-boat C.38 - Navy Photos), submarine, C-class, 290/320t, 1910, 2‑18in tt with 4 torpedoes, 13/7½kts, c16 crew, Pennant No.I.63, Rosyth-based 7th Flotilla, Lt Gerald Carter. Trawler Weelsby, renamed Malta for decoy purposes, left Harwich on 31 July to meet up with C.33 for anti-U-boat patrol off the Norfolk coast, but failed to repeat the earlier successes of C.24 and C.27. At 2015 on the 4th, C.33 slipped her tow to return to harbour independently, last signal at 2150 - "have nothing to communicate", then failed to arrive, “overdue, presumed lost”. (declared lost on the 5th) - Lost, cause unknown, no wreckage found, probably mined in British field near Smith’s Knoll, alternatively an accident as no German claims were made for her sinking; 3 officers and 14 ratings lost, no survivors. Destroyer Firedrake sailed at dawn on the 5th but failed to find any trace of her, declared lost (+J/Rn/C/Cn/D/He/bw/dk/ke/on)


Thursday 5 August

Eastern Front - Germans entered Warsaw, Austrians captured Ivangorod

Caucasus Front - Turks recaptured Van

North Sea

Industry, store carrier, 1,460 tons/497grt, 1901, Admiralty-owned. In collision with Dutch SS Zeeland off Wold LV. Sunk c19 October 1918 (D/gr/ms)

Atlantic off W Ireland

CLEMENTINA, Admiralty yacht, 469/1887, hired 22/9/14, 2-6pdr, Pennant No.025, Examination Service, Capt Thomas Walker (retired Vice Admiral). Closing the SS Adam Smith (299grt) for examination off Tor Cor Point (C/D - off Tor Point) in the early morning, in collision, holed, and flooded from the stokehold aft. To prevent her sinking, run aground and beached nearby. Salvage was abandoned, sold for breaking-up where she lay; no lives lost at this time, but an Assistant Engineer RNR died on 20 September 1915 possibly from injuries sustained. Note: location is confirmed as South Tor Cor or Torcor Point, Co Galway (+J/C/D/He/dk; ADM.137/143)


Friday 6 August

Gallipoli Campaign - ANZAC offensive at Lone Pine to 9th; British landings at Suvla start night of 6th/7th

North Sea

LEANDROS (L/Lr/D/dq - Leander; D - but renamed Leandros), Admiralty trawler, 276/1907, Lindsey Steam Fishing, Grimsby-reg GY.260, hired 8/14 as Leander, minesweeper, Admiralty No.18, Dover Patrol, Skipper Walter Richmond RNR. Mined, laid by UC.5 (Herbert Pustkuchen) three days earlier, sank off North Knock Sand Buoy, off Thames Estuary (wi - in 51.43N, 01.38E); 7 ratings lost (He – 5 died) (+L/Lr/C/D/He/dk/dq/sc/un/wi; ADM.1/8429/223)


Saturday 7 August

German Minefield - Moray Firth field of nearly 400 mines laid by German auxiliary minelayer Meteor (1,912grt, ex-British Vienna seized Hamburg 4/8/14), night of 7th/8th to foul the approach to Cromarty and the Grand Fleet base of Invergordon, discovered the morning of the 8th by a minesweeping trawler

Gallipoli Campaign

Gallipoli and area - click to enlarge

Scourge, destroyer, G-class, c1,100t, one of ten destroyers taking part in Suvla landings, each one carried in 500 troops on deck with another 500 in a towed X or motor lighter, Scourge landed her men on C-beach, S of Nibrunesi Point. Now trying to get some of the lighters off the ground, hit in engine-room by Turkish shell around 0830 and had to retire for repairs; casualties uncertain, but one rating lost (Rn/Cn/dd/dk)

X-lighters, ramped self-propelled landing craft, X.1-series, designed for Dardanelles, launched 4-7/15, 160t, could carry 500 troops, carried K numbers, also known as K-boats, motor lighters, nicknamed "beetles". At least 10 lighters, numbered K.1-10 took part in the Suvla landings, some of which may not have got off, others damaged by gunfire (Rn/Cn/da/ec)

see Army Despatch, dated 11 December 1915 in London Gazette No.29429 - Gallipoli Campaign, including Suvla Landings


Sunday 8 August

Baltic Sea - German naval attack on Gulf of Riga, to 21st, driven off by Russian fleet,

Austro-Hungarian submarine U.XII mined in Adriatic off Venice

Sea of Marmara - Turkish old battleship Hayreddin Barbarossa sunk by submarine E.11 (Lt-Cdr Nasmith)

Norwegian Sea

INDIA, Admiralty armed merchant cruiser, ex-passenger ship, 7,940/1896, 18 kts, Peninsular & Oriental Steam Navigation Co, Greenock-reg, hired 13/3/15, Pennant No.M.81, 10th CS, Northern Patrol, c300 crew, Cdr William Kennedy i/c, master, Lt Richard Groundwater RNR. On patrol off Norwegian coast to intercept iron ore carriers sailing from Narvik for Germany via Rotterdam, with attached hired trawlers Saxon and Newland also 10th CS for inshore duties. Swedish SS Gloria sighted at 0830, India intercepted, boarded and searched her, details of Gloria wirelessed in. Other ships were sighted and followed, at noon ordered to send Gloria into Kirkwall, and proceeded to search for her. Now 1740, alarm gong sounded, and torpedo track seen approaching, could not be avoided and struck starboard side aft near No.3 gun, fired by U.22 (Bruno Hoppe), ship immediately started to settle by stern. Of the four starboard and three port boats kept lowered for such an emergency, six were successfully manned but with ship's way still on, a port boat capsized and on the starboard side the boats were fouled or stove in, ship sank in five minutes, 6-7 miles NNW of Heligver Light near Bodo (te - in 67.30N, 13.20E; ke - mined off Helligvaer/Hellevoer island); 121 lives lost - 11 officers, 53 ratings including some Royal Marines and  57 MMR, number of crew buried ashore in Norway (Mn - 9 officers and 107 men lost, with 189 men saved including the captain; of the latter, 19 officers and 138 men either went down with the ship and came up again or had to dive over the side before rescue; He – 166 lives lost; ke/wd - 10 officers and 150 ratings lost, 141 survivors including Cdr Kennedy), survivors picked up by Swedish SS Gotaland and HM Trawler Saxon, and landed in Norway where they were interned (+J/Mn/C/Cn/D/He/bi/dk/gf/ke/po/te/un/wd; ADM.137/185, ADM.1/8429/229, ADM.1/116/1440)

North Sea

North Sea - click to enlarge 

THE RAMSEY, (J/C - Ramsey), Admiralty armed boarding steamer, 1,443/1895, Isle of Man Steam Passenger Co, Douglas-reg, hired 28/10/14, 2-12pdr, Pennant No.M.14, attached to Grand Fleet, Lt-Cdr Harry Raby RNR (Rn - Lt P Atkins RNR; gf - refers to Acting-Lt Atkins RNR as senior surviving officer), on patrol SE of Pentland Firth. After laying mines in the Moray Firth (see 7 August), Meteor, flying the Russian flag, met The Ramsey around 0600 c70 miles ENE of Kinnaird Head in 58.20N, 00.05W "but nearer to Cromarty". The Ramsey signalled the stranger to stop, closed to about 80yds to lower a boat when the German ensign was hoisted and Meteor (c2-8.8cm/2tt/375 mines) attacked with gunfire and torpedoes, The Ramsey sank in three minutes (J - torpedoed; J/D - SE of Pentland Firth; C - off Firth of Forth; dx - off Moray Firth); 53 lives lost - 5 officers including Cdr Raby, 23 ratings and 25 MMR (He – 65 lives lost, 33 survivors; gf - 54 lives), 4 officers and 39 men taken prisoner, Meteor headed back to Germany, but was scuttled next day and the British POW's released. Note: D - "The Ramsey" is in Navy Lists as "Ramsey" (+J/L/Lr/Rn/C/Cn/D/He/dk/dx/gf/kp; ADM.1/8430/241)

BEN ARDNA, Admiralty trawler, 187/1912, R Irvin, Aberdeen-reg A517, hired 8/14 as minesweeper, Admiralty No.289, Dover Patrol. Engaged in sweeping, mined at 1330, mine laid by UC.1 (Egon von Werner) three days before, sank quickly about ¾ mile E of Elbow Buoy, off North Foreland/Broadstairs, Kent; 2 ratings lost. Note: Lloyds lists her as fishing when sunk, not in Admiralty service (+L/Lr/C/D/He/dk/dq/sc/un; ADM.1/8429/224)


Monday 9 August

German auxiliary minelayer Meteor 1,912grt, ex-British Vienna seized Hamburg 4/8/14. First laid mines off north Russia, now on second mission to lay mines in North Sea, sank HMS Ramsey the day before, now in danger of interception by British light cruisers and scuttled.

North Sea

LYNX (Lynx had three funnels; below, two-funnelled sister-ship Ardent - Navy Photos), destroyer, K-class, c1300t, 1913, 3-4in/2-21in tt with 4 torpedoes, 29kts, 73 crew, Pennant No.H.71, 4th DF Grand Fleet, Cdr John Cole, on patrol with two other destroyers in Moray Firth, SE of Helmsdale. Around 0600 or 0630, explosion under No.1 boiler room,  bridge area destroyed and back broken, fore part sank almost straightaway and stern half ten minutes later. Mined, laid by Meteor off Moray Firth (He - in 58.07N, 02.38W; wi - in 58N, 03W), "position stated to be 2 miles to the northward of the mine-field as then located"; Cdr Cole, 1 officer and 61 ratings lost (Rn/gf - 3 officers and 21 men survived; He/ke/wi - 70 lost including captain, 26 survivors), survivors picked up by SS Vocana later that morning (+J/C/Cn/D/He/dk/dx/ke/sc/wi; ADM.1/8429/230, ADM.137/3603)


Tuesday 10 August

Dover Straits

Cleon, 266/1907, hired 5/15 and Equinox, 198/1899, hired 6/15 both Grimsby-reg Admiralty trawlers, at anchor close together in Dover Harbour. Zeppelin dropped bombs just after midnight, Cleon damaged, one landed near Equinox, exploded in water, funnel and sides riddled with shrapnel; three Equinox crew asleep in their bunks below were wounded; one rating died of wounds (dp - four asleep, two ratings killed outright, one dangerously wounded but recovered) (Mn/D/dp)


Thursday 12 August

Gallipoli Campaign - British offensive at Suvla.

Naval Aviation - Short Type 184 seaplanes from carrier Ben-my-Chree carried out first ever aerial torpedo attacks, launching 14in torpedoes in the Dardanelles area against Turkish ships on the 12th and 17th, results in ships sunk or damaged is uncertain.

Gallipoli Campaign

Swiftsure, battleship, Swiftsure-class, 11,800t, 4-10in/14-7.5in and Grafton, ex-1st-class protected cruiser, Edgar-class, 7,350t, 2-9.2in/10-6in, now bulged or "blister ship", providing gunfire support off Suvla beaches. Swiftsure hit by 12-pdr field gun, 5 ratings lost and 10 wounded, one of whom died, Grafton off C-beach, S of Nibrunesi Point lost 9 ratings killed and 10 wounded (Cn/da/dk)

Manica, kite balloon ship, 4,120/1900, hired 12/5/15, supporting Suvla landings. (da - 14th) - Torpedo fired by UB.8 from 500yds passed under her shallow draught (da - submarine sighted outside net, two torpedoes fired and missed Manica, hit net at acute angle and burst). Attack two days later on a similar vessels also unsuccessful (D/da/md)


Friday 13 August

U-boat Warfare - Troop transport Royal Edward was first British merchant ship sunk in Mediterranean; French ammunition ship Carthage was sunk earlier on 4 July.

Austro-Hungarian submarine U.III sunk by Italian and French warships in Strait of Otranto.

Persian Gulf

Juno, ex-2nd-class cruiser, Eclipse-class, 5,600t, 5-6in/6-4.7in, was 11th CS, arrived Persian Gulf in July, Capt D Wake. Shore party casualties were recorded for August. Apparently German-inspired trouble led to decision to occupy the whole of the island of Bushire on the Persian side of the Gulf, carried out by a small joint naval/army force commanded by Capt Wake on 13th/14th; 4 ratings killed on 13th, 1 officer DOW on 14th, 1 rating on 16th, ship presumably not damaged (Rn/Cn/dk)


Saturday 14 August

WORSLEY, Admiralty trawler, 309/1913, E C Grant, Grimsby-reg GY814, hired 1914 as minesweeper (D - 7/15 as auxiliary patrol vessel), 1-3pdr, believed Harwich-based, Lt James Feetham RNR. On patrol with a second trawler along the Suffolk coast between Sizewell and Shipwash LV, mined under the bridge at 1800, laid by UC.6 (Matthias Graf von Schmettow) the previous day, broke in two and sank in under two minutes, one mile N of Aldeburgh Napes buoy, off Suffolk (WI - in 52.09N, 01.36.30E); Lt Feetham lost (+L/Lr/C/D/He/dk/sc/un/wi; ADM.137/3123)


Sunday 15 August

UB.4 sunk by Q-ship fishing smack lnverlyon off Yarmouth; Inverlyon was not believed damaged in the action


Monday 16 August

U-boat Raid - U.24 shelled Harrington area of Whitehaven, Cumberland and damaged benzol and naphtha works, which were out of action for four days

North Sea

JAPAN, Admiralty trawler, 205/1904, H L Taylor, Grimsby-reg GY28, hired 1915 (D - 8/14; He - 1914) as minesweeper, Admiralty No.42, Lt Richard Harcourt RNR i/c, Skipper Arthur Barber RNR, believed Harwich-based, sailed from Lowestoft or Harwich, sweeping with HMT Touchstone for UC-laid mines, both vessels clearing sweeps at 1915. Winch boat Japan heaved in sweep wire and saw it was fouled by a mine (laid by UC.6, Matthias Graf von Schmettow) only 30yd away, by the time the winch-man’s warning had been heard and acted on, the mine was only 3-4yd distant, insufficient headway was kept on using the trawler’s engines, mine blew up port-side between bridge and foremast, sinking her within 30sec off S end of Shipwash shoal, off Harwich (wi - three entries - in 51.53.28N, 01.34.29E, in 51.57N, 01.36.45E and in  51.52.40N, 01.37E); five ratings killed (He – 4 killed), two of the bodies were picked up by HMT Lord Roberts and Touchstone and landed at HMS Ganges, survivors rescued from the water within 15min (+L/Lr/C/D/He/dk/sc/un/wi; ADM.137/3124)

Eastern Mediterranean

B.6, (Lt C MacArthur) and B.11 (Lt N Holbrook), submarines, B-class, 287/316t, 2-18in tt, Mudros-based, from Alexandria with ABS Heroic for patrol off the Libyan/Egyptian border, information received that Turkish arms would be smuggled to Senussi tribesmen by German U-boats. Lt Holbrook attempted to land in a small boat under a flag of truce near Sollum, became suspicious and pulled back to B.11, shore group opened fire and riddled casings and bridge screens of both submarines with bullets; Lt Holbrook hit in the face by a ricochet, on B.6, ERA killed and fell overboard, CERA badly wounded, Coxswain slightly (Cn/dk/md)

Gallipoli Campaign

LUNDY, Admiralty trawler, 188/1908, Hull Steam Fishing & Ice Co, Hull-reg H993, hired 5/15, 1‑3pdr, Admiralty No.1791, patrol vessel, Skipper Henry Charles Taylor RNR, in Suvla Bay, alongside SS Kalyan, taking on ammunition. Anchorage came under fire and master of the Kalyan decided to move position, slowly, with Lundy still secured. As more shells landed, one of them nearby, Kalyan increased speed and turned slightly, Lundy failed to hear the shouted warnings, her stern was dragged under the stern of the larger ship, the hull holed by the propeller, and she flooded and sank; one ratings lost (He - the engineer dying 'of shock' in the process); crew got away in their boat(s) (+Lr/C/D/He/dk/hw; ADM.137/3135)


Tuesday 17 August

North Sea

Princess Margaret, auxiliary minelayer, 5,934/1914, and Mentor, destroyer, M-class, 1,055t, 3-4in/2-1pdr/4-12in tt, 10th DF, Cdr E Inman. Princess Margaret escorted by two divisions of 10th DF, supported by Harwich LCS and four 4th DF destroyers, sailed to lay field off Amrun Bank, 25 miles N of Heligoland, heading S from Horns Reef LV, very dark night, sea calm, heavily overcast. Ran into division of German 2nd TBF, attacked with torpedoes, Princess Margaret missed but Mentor's bows blown away under water, steamed back to Harwich; no casualties listed. Operation called off (Rn/Cn/D/ty)

St George's Channel/Atlantic off SW England

Three Admiralty colliers, all presumably chartered (and six, probably seven more vessels) captured by U.38 (Max Valentiner) and all sunk (except one which escaped):

KIRKBY, 3,034/1891, Sir R Ropner & Co, West Hartlepool-reg, Mr W Hewison, Barry for Manchester with coal. Torpedoed by U.38, 23 miles W by S of Bardsey Isle (L/wi - 20 miles WSW of, in 52.30N, 05.10W) (+L/Lr/te/un/wi)

THE QUEEN, coastal collier, 557/1897, John Hay & Sons, Glasgow-reg, Mr D Macalister, Ayr for Devonport with coal. Sunk by gunfire, 40 miles NNE of The Smalls LH, E of Milford Haven (wi - in 52.15N, 05.05W) (+L/Lr/te/un/wi)

GLENBY, 2,196/1900, Sir R Ropner & Co, West Hartlepool-reg, Mr W Crighton, Cardiff for Archangel with coal. Sunk by gunfire, 30 miles N of The Smalls (L - 30 miles W of; wi - in 52.13N, 05.45W); two crew lost (+L/Lr/te/un/wi)


Wednesday 18 August

Baltic Sea - Action in Gulf of Riga, Russian Navy inflicted some damage on German fleet


E.13 (below, stranded - Navy Photos/Antoine), submarine, E-class, 667/807t, 22/9/14, 1-12pdr/5-18in tt with 10 torpedoes, 15kts/9kts, c30 crew, Pennant No.I.93, served at Harwich, Lt-Cdr Geoffrey Layton. Ordered with E.8 to join E.1 and E.9 in the Baltic, sailed Harwich 14th, now approaching the Sound separating Denmark from Sweden late on the 18th, and E.13 dived. (C - 3 September) - Compass failed shortly before 2300, surfaced and ran hard aground on the SE of Saltholm island between Copenhagen and Malmo in neutral waters, tried all night to get clear and at 0500 on the 19th, Danish torpedo boat Narhvalen arrived to inform the captain that there was a 24 hour limit for getting off, no assistance could be given and a guardship would anchor nearby.

German destroyer came up but left when two more Danish TB's arrived, by this time it was accepted that E.13 could not be refloated and the crew were waiting to be taken off. About 0900 (or 0930) two German destroyers approached from the south flying the signal "abandon ship immediately", the leading G.132 fired one or two torpedoes which hit the bottom and failed to damage E.13, then both opened fire with machine guns, crew jumped into the water and swam for the shore or the Danish vessels but the Germans apparently fired on them until torpedo boat Soulven interposed herself, destroyers left and surviving men picked up by the Danes; 15 ratings lost by gunfire or drowning, 23 survivors landed in Copenhagen that evening and interned, Lt-Cdr Layton and 1st Lt Paul Eddis later withdrew their parole and escaped back home. The wrecked boat was interned (Cn - 18th; J - 3 September), sold to Danish shipbreakers Petersen & Albeck December 1921 (J - 1919), BU at Copenhagen. E.8 safely reached Revel (Tallinn) (+J/Rn/C/Cn/D/He/bw/dk/ke; ADM.137/146) (Casualty list, for the 19th)


POONAH, Admiralty trawler, 171/1903, Hull Steam Fishing & Ice, Hull-reg H737, hired 11/14 as minesweeper, 1‑3pdr, Admiralty No.550. In collision with minesweeping trawler HMT Northward (204grt), foundered off Stromness, Orkneys (hw - in Suvla Bay); no lives lost (+Lr/C/D/He/dk/hw; ADM.137/146)

North Sea

Lilac, fleet sweeping sloop, Acacia-class, 1,200t, 2-12pdr/2-3pdr, recently joined Grand Fleet minesweeping flotilla, Lt-Cdr Leslie Fisher, sweeping Meteor-laid field in Cromarty Firth, bad weather with heavy sea running. (sc - 8th) - Stem hit mine, bows blown off nearly as far as bridge, remains hung down from keel, now drew nearly 30-40ft of water, towed by sister-ship Hollyhock into Peterhead, received new bow and rejoined flotilla some months later; 16 ratings lost (Rn/Cn/D/dk/gf/sc)

Aegean Sea

Barry, fleet messenger and store carrier, ex-excursion paddle steamer, 398/1907, hired 29/6/15 (C - as minesweeper), Pendant No.Y4.28, based at Mudros, serving as supply ship off Dardanelles, carrying supplies to Suvla Bay. In collision with hired screw minesweeper Whitby Abbey (do - ABS) in Mudros Bay, island of Lemnos, stern badly damaged and had to unload cargo, repaired by repair ship Reliance. Believed returned to duties in September carrying men, ammunition, mail and supplies to Anzac Cove and Suvla Bay, often under shellfire but never hit (C/Cn/D/da/do)


Thursday 19 August

U-boat Warfare - In spite of German assurances that large passenger liners would not be attacked, British liner Arabic was sunk without warning with the loss of 2 or 3 US citizens. Strong US protests led to German claim she was zig-zagging and as a single-funnelled vessel, not easily identified as a liner. Germany shortly extended assurances to small passenger ships. Also "The Baralong Incident" - U.27 sunk by Q-ship Baralong in Atlantic off SW England; Baralong was not damaged in the action

Baltic Sea - German battlecruiser Moltke torpedoed and damaged by submarine E.1 off Gulf of Riga

Atlantic off SW England

Possibly three Admiralty-hired colliers sunk by gunfire of U.38 (Max Valentiner):

RESTORMEL, (wi - Admiralty-requisitioned collier, released for this one voyage and cargo), 2,118/1901, New Restormel SS Co, Cardiff-reg, 19 crew, Seville for Clyde with 3,300t iron ore. U.38 surfaced close by, fired two shells and ordered her to stop, crew tried to abandon ship but master headed away at full-speed. Firing continued and ship finally hove-to, crew abandoned ship and a torpedo was fired hitting her in No.2 hold. Restormel was still afloat after the sinking of the nearby Baron Erskine, the U-boat returned, fired four shells into the engine-room and she sank at 0900, 28 miles NNW of Bishop Rock, Scillies (wi - in 50.15N, 06.52W); armed yacht Rovenska arrived, forced the submarine to withdraw, the survivors were then rescued and landed at Penzance (+L/te/un/wi)

BARON ERSKINE, 5,585/1911, Hogarth Shipping Co, Ardrossan-reg, 114 crew, on Admiralty charter for this voyage, Avonmouth for New Orleans in ballast. After U.38 had shelled Restormel, the U-boat headed for the expectant Baron Erskine and fired a warning shot, she headed at full speed for Land’s End sending SOS, continued to be chased and shelled. At 0840 shrapnel brought down the radio aerial, she stopped and after the crew had taken to the boats, torpedo hit port side in the engine-room. Six more shells were fired into the hull, she went down at 0920, 25 miles NNW of Bishop Rock (wi - in 50.12N, 06.50W); ship’s boats headed for St Ives, picked up by Rovenska and landed at Penzance (+L/te/un/wi)

SAMARA (wi - Admiralty requisitioned collier No.563), 3,172/1906, MacLay & McIntyre, Glasgow-reg, sailing Colombo via Port Said for Bristol with sugar. Shelled by U.38, ship abandoned, sank 35 miles W of Bishop Rock (L - 30 miles W of; wi - 35 miles NW of, in 49.45N, 07.20W); survivors picked up by HMT Dewsland, landed at Penzance that day at 1730 (+L/te/un/wi)


"The Baralong Incident"

Admiralty collier (and a second British vessel) sunk by U.27 (Bernd Wegener). An attack on a third vessel led to U.27 being sunk by HMS Baralong:

BEN VRACKIE, Admiralty collier, 3,908/1905, Watson Brothers Shipping Co, Glasgow-reg, sailing Cardiff for Malta with coal and stores. (te/un - 18th) - Captured by U.27, sunk by gunfire 55 miles NW by N of Scillies (L - in 50.24N, 07.55W; te/un - 50.30N, 07.30W) (+L/Lr/te/un)

Nicosian, cargo steamship, 6,369/1912, Leyland Line, Liverpool, sailing New Orleans for Liverpool, carrying mules. (L - 20th) - stopped at 1500 by U.27 (Wegener), 73 miles S by W of Old Head of Kinsale (L - in 50.22N, 08.12W; dx - 50.43N, 07.22W; ge - c100 miles S of Queenstown), Q-ship Baralong was nearby, sighted Nicosian and received signals she had been captured by one or two U-boats. Baralong, headed as if to pick up Nicosian's crew from their boats, the U-boat passed behind the stopped ship to intercept the new arrival and when she appeared again, Baralong had the White Ensign hoisted and opened a heavy fire from 600yds which soon sank U.27. As Baralong picked up Nicosian's crew, Germans were seen swimming for the stopped ship and fearing they would board and scuttle her, opened fire on them in the water. Four Germans managed to reach her and disappeared below. With guns and ammunition onboard, Baralong sent her small Royal Marine contingent across to hunt them down, no doubt on a "shoot-on-sight" basis, before they could do any damage. All four were killed. Nicosian's crew returned and brought her into Bristol holed by U-boat shells. On the bases of reports by some of the American muleteers carried by Nicosian, the Germans described the incident as an atrocity and demanded the crew of Baralong be tried for murder and punished. Britain agreed to an impartial tribunal as long as the enquiry included the sinkings of liner Arabic, firing on the boats of collier Ruel and the attack on E.13 in neutral waters. The Germans dropped their demands although still threatened reprisals (+L/Rn/Mn/dx/ge/ms)


Albert Medal 1st Class, later George Cross - CPO Michael Sullivan Keogh, HMS Ark Royal, aircraft taking off from Imbros airfield, crashed and caught fire, attempted to rescue the fatally injured pilot


Saturday 21 August

Gallipoli Campaign - British offensive at Suvla

U-boat warfare - UC.5 was the first minelayer to penetrate the English Channel


Monday 23 August

North Sea

MIURA, Admiralty trawler, 257/1911, Neale & West, Cardiff-reg CF36, hired 1914 (D - 2/15; He - 1915) as auxiliary patrol vessel, 1-3pdr or 6pdr, Admiralty No.979, Lt Leslie Kersey RNR. On patrol off Great Yarmouth, explosion on starboard quarter at 1245, heeled over, righted, then slowly settled by the stern, sank off Yarmouth, Norfolk (wi - in 52.36.16N, 01.54.20E). Not known if she had been mined or torpedoed although survivors gave evidence that a U-boat was involved. Most sources list her as mined, Hepper as torpedoed. In either case, the submarine involved was UB.2 (Werner Fürbringer); 11 ratings lost (+L/Lr/C/D/He/ap/dk/sc/un/wi; ADM.137/3125)

Belgian Coast

Albyn, ex-Albion, paddle minesweeper, 363/1893, hired 26/5/15, 1-6pdr AA, one of the first six hired paddlers to arrive at Dover 14/7/15 as the Dover Paddlers, Lt A Daniels RNR i/c, night before swept ahead of monitors for Zeebrugge shoot, now daylight on 23rd, returning to Dover. (do - 22nd) - Attacked by German seaplane, a reported seven bombs dropped in two groups, avoided by helm and engine changes. During many subsequent operations, the paddle minesweepers with their broad beam often became the focus of German air attacks; it was reported on 10 June 1916 that "The paddle sweepers at Dunkirk... (had their routine work) enlivened on most days by attacks from hostile aircraft" (D/do/sc)

Atlantic off SW Ireland

One, possibly two Admiralty-chartered vessels stopped by U.38 (Max Valentiner) and sunk with bombs off Fastnet Rock, off Co Cork:

SILVIA, Admiralty chartered red-ensign oiler, 5,268/1913, Oil Tank SS Co, Liverpool-reg, 41 crew, Mr J Prouse, Halifax (NS) for Queenstown with 6,600t fumace fuel oil. U.38 sighted two miles away on starboard beam at 1100, started shelling, tanker stopped and abandoned, U-boat closed, boarded and placed charges in engine room, pulled off a short distance and opened fire after they had exploded, Silvia sank at 1215, 47 miles W of (L/wi - 40 miles W of, in 51.07N, 10.46W), ship's confidential papers thrown overboard by Master in weighted bag; survivors picked up by armed trawler at 1900, landed at Berehaven (+L/Lr/te/un/wi)

TRAFALGAR, 4,572/1911, Glasgow-reg, Glasgow Shipowners, 31 crew, Mr W Peter (wi - on Admiralty charter), Mejillones for Clyde with nitrates. Sunk 54 miles SW by W of (L - 54 miles SW of; wi - in 50.39N, 10.27W) (+L/te/un/)


Wednesday 25 August

Eastern Front - Austro-Germans captured Brest-Litovsk


Thursday 26 August

North Sea

JASPER, Admiralty-owned trawler, 221/1912, previously Kingston Steam Trawling, purchased by Admiralty pre-war, 1-6pdr, Admiralty No.164, commissioned as minesweeper, Lt William St Clair Fleming RNR. Taking part in sweeping field laid by German auxiliary minelayer Meteor in Moray Firth, mined at 0935 and sank quickly (He - 58.13N, 02.22W; wi - in 58N, 03W); 8 ratings killed (He – 7 died; wi - 11) (+Mn/C/D/He/dk/wi; ADM.1/8431/250)


Saturday 28 August

North Sea

DANE, Admiralty trawler, 265/1913, 'D' Line Steam Fishing, Grimsby-reg GY947, hired 4/15 as auxiliary patrol vessel, Admiralty No.1446, believed Harwich-based, Lt Parker RNR. Mined at 0750, laid by UC.6 (Matthias Graf von Schmettow), sank about 1 mile NW of North Aldeburgh Napes buoy, off Suffolk (wi - 2½m ESE of Thorpe Ness, in 52.10.08N, 01.41.06E); 4 ratings lost and 1 more DOW (wi - 8 killed) (+L/Lr/C/D/He/dk/sc/un/wi; ADM.1/8431/251)

Irish Sea

DOLORES, naval motor boat, ex-high speed pleasure motor boat, 12grt, hired 1914, serving with Motor Boat Reserve as HM Motor Boat No.55 (number also used by motor boat Arabian), armed with rifles/small arms, manned by RNVR crew, Sub‑Lt Harold Bishop Mylchreest RNR in command. Caught fire, burnt to the waterline and sank alongside the quay in Douglas Harbour, Isle of Man (wi - in 54.08.45N, 04.28.05W); no lives lost (+D/He/dk/wi)


Sunday 29 August

North Sea

C.29, submarine, C-class, c290/320t, 1909, 2‑18in tt with 4 torpedoes, 13/7½kts, 16 crew, Pennant No.I.59, Rosyth-based 7th Flotilla, Lt William Schofield, on anti-U-boat patrol with decoy trawler Ariadne, submerged, in tow and in telephone contact with Ariadne. Underwater explosion and tow rope went slack, mined off the Humber near Outer Dowsing LV (bw - 53.59N, 01.25E), accidentally towed into British minefield laid in January; 2 officers and 15 ratings lost (He – all 16 crew lost), no survivors (+J/Rn/C/Cn/D/He/bw/dk/dx/go/ke/on)




Wednesday 1 September

Auxiliary Patrol - First 6 Elco-built ML's reached Portsmouth, overhauled and carried out trials, ML's 1, 2, 3 commissioned at Portsmouth on 14 October

North Sea

Two Admiralty trawlers, both Grimsby-reg and Harwich-based (and one steamship), mined and sunk in field laid by UC.7 (Franz Wäger) the day before off the Shipwash, off Orford Ness:

NADINE, Admiralty trawler, 150/1898, Orient Steam Fishing, GY138, hired 11/14 as auxiliary patrol vessel, Pennant No.693, tender to HMS Ganges, shore training establishment at Shotley, Suffollk, Skipper Percy Michael Saunders RNR. Sank off North Shipwash Buoy (wi - 52.01.18N, 01.37.35E); Skipper and 8 ratings lost (He – 3 survivors) (+L/Lr/C/D/He/dk/sc/un/wi; ADM.1/8432/257)

MALTA (1) Admiralty trawler, 138/1897, W Grant, GY325, hired 11/14 as auxiliary patrol vessel, Pennant No.700, had operated with submarine C.33 as trawler-submarine decoy, Skipper Frank McPherson RNR. Sank 2 cables NW of North Shipwash Buoy (wi - in 52.01.18N, 01.37.35E); 7 ratings lost (+L/Lr/C/D/He/dk/qs/sc/un/wi; ADM.1/8432/259)


Friday 3 September

North Sea

CHURSTON, Admiralty collier, 2,470/1914, Wilton SS Co, Dartmouth-reg, Mr W Martin, from Cardiff with 2,310t Welsh coal. Mined at 0850, laid by UC.7 (Franz Wäger), tugs attempted to take her in tow but weather too bad, finally sank at 1300, 2½m S of Orford Ness (W/te - in 52.01N, 01.38E); four crew lost, survivors picked up by naval patrol vessel (+L/Lr/sc/te/un/wi)


Saturday 4 September

U-boat Warfare - SS Natal Transport was the first recorded British merchant ship lost in the Mediterranean to a U-boat

North Sea

Dahlia, fleet sweeping sloop, Acacia-class, 1,200t, 2-12pdr/2-3pdr, Grand Fleet minesweeping flotilla, Lt G Parsons, sweeping Meteor-laid field in Cromarty Firth. (Rn - 2nd) - Mined and very badly damaged, bows blown off but ship saved and repaired; 3 ratings killed, one missing and one died of wounds, Lt Parsons severely injured (Rn/Cn/D/dk/gf/sc)

Atlantic off SW Ireland

Admiralty chartered red-ensign oiler (and a British steamship) captured off Fastnet Rock and sunk by U.33 (Konrad Gansser), then on passage for the Dardanelles:

CYMBELINE, 4,505/1902, Bear Creek Oil & Shipping Co (C T Bowring & Co), Liverpool-reg, Port Arthur for Dartmouth with oil. Sunk by torpedo 96 miles W by S of (H/te/un - also 29 miles W by S of; un – in 51.16N, 12.04W); six crew lost (+L/Mn/Lr/te/un)


E.7, submarine, E-class, 655/796t, 1913, 1-12pdr/4-18in tt with 8 torpedoes, 15/9kts, 30 crew, Pennant No.I.87, fitted with 6pdr in 1915, Lt-Cdr Archibald Cochrane, attempting to break through Dardanelles defences to Sea of Marmara to relieve E.11 and partner E.7, set out from Kephalo Bay at 0200 on 4th. Reached Nagara Point at 0700, starboard propeller fouled anti-submarine net, struggled for 12 hours to get free, blowing and flooding tanks and manouevring, which only alerted the defences. Lt Heino von Hemburg, commander of UB.14 (ke - U.14) was rowed out to the approximate position, reportedly by the boat's cook, with one or more small mines which were lowered and detonated near the trapped submarine. According to Hepper, the first mine exploded at 1030 shaking the boat, and a second at 1840 which broke lights and other equipment. Lt Cochrane accepted E.7 would be destroyed, burnt the confidential papers, prepared for scuttling, came to the surface and blew her up (C/Cn - on 5th); no lives lost, all 38 crew saved, taken to Constantinople as POW's (+J/Rn/C/Cn/D/He/bw/dk/go/ke)


Tuesday 7 September

Belgian Coast

Attentive, scout cruiser, Adventure-class, 2,670t, c9-4in/2-14in tt, 6th DF leader, Capt Johnson, in support of Dover Patrol bombardment force preparing to carry out Ostend shoot, forced to wait for haze to clear. Bombed by aircraft, Attentive hit on deck, one 4in gun disabled; two men killed and seven wounded (Rn/Cn/D/dk/dp/dq)


Wednesday 8 September

Dover Straits

Leven, destroyer, C-class, 420t, Dover Patrol, dark night. In collision with transport carrying 2,000 troops, bow flattened, found drifting broadside in heavy swell in the direction of Boulogne by destroyer Viking, taken in tow stern-first into Dover assisted by destroyer Tartar and tug Lady Crundall (Cn/D/dp/gr)


Thursday 9 September

North Sea

BALAKANI, Admiralty chartered red-ensign oiler, 3,696/1899, Petroleum SS Co, London-reg, Mr F White, Port Arthur for London with oil fuel. Mined, laid by UC.1 (Egon von Werner), sank ½m SW of South Longsand Buoy, off Clacton (L/te - 51.31.15N, 01.20E; wi - ½m SW by S of, in 51.31.11N, 01.20.57E); six crew lost (+L/Lr/te/un/wi)


Friday 10 September

North Sea

Fearless, scout cruiser, Active-class, 4,000t, 1st DF leader, Harwich Force, sailing with battlecruiser force supporting minelaying operation in the Heligoland Bight on the night of 10th/11th. Collided with unidentified destroyer during mining, Fearless sustained "considerable damage"; but apparently no deaths. Kindell confirms that Fearless was in collision with destroyer Hydra, also 1st DF and that the the cruiser lost two men killed with two more dying of injuries, and Hydra, one man killed (Cn/dk/gf/gr)


Saturday 11 September

Atlantic W of Scotland

Patia, 6,103/1913, hired 21/11/14 and Oropesa, 5,364/1895, hired 22/11/14 (later French Champagne), armed merchant cruisers, 10th CS, on patrol W of Hebrides at night. In collision about 2200, both sent to Clyde for repairs, Oropesa damaged from waterline to upper deck at point of impact and leaking, Patia's stem badly damaged, escorted in by AMC Ebro and later a destroyer and trawlers, attacked by U-boat on passage (Mn/D/bi/gf/gr)


Tuesday 14 September

Dover Straits

CITY OF DUNDEE, Admiralty trawler, 269/1914, Fleetwood-reg FD4, T F Kelsall, hired 11/14 as auxiliary patrol vessel, Admiralty No.678, Lt Albert Coles DSC RNR, Dover Patrol. In collision with Dutch steamship Patroclus, nearly cut in two and began to sink at once, going down off Folkestone, Kent at 1900; Warrant Officer and 6 ratings lost, Lt Coles was on the upper bridge at the time, became entangled in signal halliards and nearly pulled down, reached the surface, swam to a raft and pulled on board three other men, survivors picked up after hour and a half in the water (+Lr/C/D/He/dk/dq/ft/sc; ADM.137/151)


Wednesday 15 September

U.6 sunk by British submarine E.16 off Stavanger, Norway


Thursday 16 September

North Sea

Warspite, dreadnought, Queen Elizabeth-class, 31,500t, completed 3/15, 5th BS Grand Fleet. Damaged by grounding off Dunbar in the Firth of Forth, repaired (Cn - at Rosyth 17/9-20/11/15; gf - Tyne), rejoined 5th BS on 23/11/15 (Cn/gf/gr)


Saturday 18 September

Eastern Front - Germans captured Vilna by 19th.

U-boat Warfare - following US protests over the sinking of Arabic (19 August) and Hesperian (4 September) and because of limited success with the unrestricted submarine campaign, the Germans decided that by the end of September U-boats should: (1) stop attacks off the west coast of the British Isles and in the English Channel; (2) carry out attacks in the North Sea strictly according to prize rules; (3) transfer their main area of operations to the Mediterranean where there was less chance of meeting US ships or killing their citizens. There were no shipping losses to U-boat attack in the restricted areas in October and November, although they restarted in December.

Dover Straits

Admiralty trawler (and two other British vessels) mined, all believed laid by UC.6 (Matthias Graf von Schmettow) three days before:

LYDIAN, Admiralty trawler, 244/1908, S A Laycock, Milford Haven-reg M232, hired 1915 (D - 8/14) as auxiliary patrol vessel, Admiralty No.162, Dover Patrol, Skipper James Charles Phillips. Sank at 1100 off South Foreland, near Dover, Kent (He - off Leathercoat Point, St Margaret's Bay; wi - in 51.08N, 01.27E); Skipper and 7 ratings lost, 2 survivors (+L/Lr/C/D/He/dk/dq/sc/un/wi; ADM.1/8434/279, ADM.137/152)

Gallipoli Campaign

Swiftsure, battleship, Swiftsure-class, 11,890t, proceeding Mudros for Suvla. Believed attacked by U-boat - possibly U.21, but not recorded in German Official History (Rn/Cn/D/ge)


Monday 20 September

Central Mediterranean

LINKMOOR, Admiralty collier, 4,306/1914, Moor Line, London-reg, sailing Lemnos for Malta with coal. Captured by U.35 (Waldermar Kophamel), sunk by gunfire 50 miles W of Cape Matapan (L/te - in 36.16N, 21.18E) (+L/Lr/te/un)


Thursday 23 September

North Sea

Christopher, destroyer, K-class, 1,300t, 4th DF Grand Fleet. In collision with armed boarding vessel King Orry 1,877grt in fog, Christopher damaged (D/Cn/gf/gr)


Friday 24 September

U.41 sunk by Q-ship steamer Baralong in Atlantic, 90 miles W of Ushant, Baralong was not damaged in the action, her second success in five weeks

Belgian Coast

Southern North Sea and Dover Straits (with later defences)
click maps to enlarge

GREAT HEART (may be spelt Greatheart or Great Hart), Admiralty drifter, 78/1911, Inverness-reg INS233, hired 6/15 as net drifter, Admiralty No.1395, Dover Patrol, Skipper William Davidson RNR. Sailed with other drifters to screen monitors that were due to carry out a bombardment of Ostend and Zeebrugge - apparently streaming her buoyed nets as protection against submarine attack. Just off Dover, sunk by explosion (He - about 2 miles off harbour entrance; wi - in 51N, 01.20E), cause unknown at the time, and probably considered due to one of her own net mines. Now confirmed mined, laid by UC.6 (Matthias Graf von Schmettow), two days earlier; Skipper and 7 ratings lost. Admiralty yacht Sanda was lost next day as part of the bombardment force (+L/Rn/C/D/He/dk/dq/un/wi; ADM.1/8434/284)


Saturday 25 September

Western Front - Battle of Loos to 8 October; Second Battle of Champagne to 6 November

Belgian Coast

SANDA, ex-St Serf, Admiralty yacht, 300/1906, hired 26/1/15 as auxiliary patrol vessel, 2-6pdr, Pennant No.073, Dover Patrol, Lt-Cdr Henry Gartside-Tipping RN Rtd, aged over 70 in August 1914, volunteered for war service, “the oldest naval officer serving at sea”. Sailed in company with monitor bombardment force including Prince Eugene and General Crauford evening of 24th for Zeebrugge shoot, to start on 25th at 0700 in support of attack by British Army. Sanda was screening net drifters, shore batteries started replying at 0900. Hit near the deckhouse and sunk, probably by 8in shell from German batteries at Blankenberghe around 0915; 4 officers including the captain, 5 ratings and 4 MN lost (Rn - 12 officers and men lost; ap - 4 officers, 11 men killed or missing), survivors rescued by drifter Fearless (+J/Rn/C/D/he/ap/dk/dp/dq; ADM.1/8437/315)


Monday 27 September

Mesopotamian Campaign - First Battle of Kut/Kut al Imara/Amara on the River Tigris by British/Indian forces advancing from Amara, taken on 28th. Armed paddle launch-tug Comet, and armed launches Shaitan, Sumana took part

 off N Scotland

CARIBBEAN, Admiralty accommodation ship, ex-passenger ship, 5,820/1890, Royal Mail Steam Packet Co, London-reg, hired 19/11/14 as armed merchant cruiser, accommodation ship 6/15, now fitted out as receiving ship for dockyard workmen, Cdr Henry Bethune in command, sailed from Liverpool on passage for Scapa Flow in “extremely heavy weather”. Shipped a lot of water and got into difficulties off Cape Wrath, sent out SOS in the afternoon of the 26th, light cruiser Birkenhead and tugs came out from Scapa and tried to tow her to safety, foundered around 0730 on the 27th (He - in 58.14N 05.42W); most of crew taken off early hours of 27th, but 15 lives lost - 6 ratings, 7 MN and 2 canteen staff (Lr/C/Cn/D/He/bi/wd/dk; ADM.156/16)


Tuesday 28 September

Central Mediterranean

H. C. HENRY, Admiralty chartered red-ensign oiler, 4,219/1909, Steamer "H C Henry" Co, Vancouver (BC)-reg, sailing London/Alexandria for Mudros with tar oil. Captured by U.39 (Walter Forstmann), sunk by gunfire 59 miles S½E of Cape Matapan, Greece (L - 30 miles SW of Cerigotto Is/Anti-Kythera) (+L/Lr/te/un)

Mesopotamian Campaign

Comet (1), armed paddle launch-tug, 144t. Only a boom which included a dhow and two iron barges at the centre appeared to prevent the final capture of Kut. Comet (Lt-Cdr Cookson, on the books of sloop Clio), Shaitan and Sumana steamed up under heavy rifle and machine gun fire, Comet went ahead to ram the dhow, failed to break through, gunfire also failed, Lt-Cdr Cookson jumped onto the dhow with an axe to try to cut the wire hawsers securing her, was riddled with bullets from close-range and killed, no other lives lost. The gunboats sank the dhow with gunfire and all retired. Early next day, the Turks had gone, the boom was dismantled and Kut occupied. Lt-Cdr Edgar Christopher Cookson DSO was posthumously awarded the Victoria Cross (Rn/D/dk/vc)


Wednesday 29 September

Western Front - French captured crest of Vimy Ridge


Thursday 30 September

Mesopotamian Campaign

Shaitan and Sumana, launches, both armed with 3pdrs, with Comet continued to chase the retreating Turks north from Kut up the increasingly shoaling River Tigris. By the 30th Shaitan was fast aground near Kut and Sumana had broken both rudders by grounding, only Comet remained in action (D/Rn)


on to  October 1915


back to Naval-History.Net

revised 1/8/11