Tag: RN

Charles George Bonner VC. DSC.

Charles George Bonner (29/12/1884 – 07/02/1951) was awarded the Victoria Cross for during the First World War.

The Awarding of the VC was  recorded in the London Gazette of Supplement: 30363, Page: 11315 and the Citation reads:

“On 8 August 1917 in the Bay of Biscay, Atlantic, Lieutenant Bonner was with HMS Dunraven (one of the ‘Q’ or ‘mystery’ ships playing the part of an unobservant merchantman) when she was shelled by an enemy submarine. The lieutenant was in the thick of the fighting and throughout the whole of the action his pluck and determination had a considerable influence on the crew. Ernest Herbert Pitcher was also awarded the Victoria Cross in this action”.

He was cremated at Warriston Crematorium, Edinburgh, and his ashes were interred at St Mary’s Churchyard, Aldridge, Staffordshire.

Charles George Bonner VC. DSC 29/12/1884 -. 07/02/1951 Aldridge, Staffordshire

© DRW 2015 – 2018. Created 23/09/2015. Image courtesy of Mark Green.

Updated: 10/01/2018 — 07:59

Albert Edward McKenzie. VC

Albert Edward McKenzie (23/10/1898 – 03/11/1918), was awarded the Victoria Cross for his actions during World War One while participating in the Zeebrugge Raid on 22/23 April 1918

The Citation, recorded in the London Gazette of Supplement: 30807, Page: 8586, reads:

“Able Seaman Albert Edward McKenzie, O.N. J31736 (Ch.).

For most conspicuous gallantry.

This rating belonged to B Company of seaman storming party. On the night of the operation he landed on the mole with his machine-gun in the face of great difficulties and did very good work, using his gun to the utmost advantage. He advanced down the mole with Lieutenant-Commander Harrison, who with most of his party was killed, and accounted for several of the enemy running from a shelter to a destroyer alongside the mole. This very gallant seaman was severely wounded whilst working his gun in an exposed position.

Able Seaman McKenzie was selected by the men of the “Vindictive,” “Iris II,” and ” Daffodil'” and of the naval assaulting force to receive the Victoria Cross under Rule 13 of the Royal Warrant dated 29th January 1896.”

He died of influenza during the world flu pandemic in October 1918 and is is buried in Camberwell Old Cemetery.

Albert E McKenzie Grave

Albert E McKenzie Grave

Camberwell Old Cemetery

DRW © 2015 – 2020. Created 26/08/2015

Updated: 05/01/2020 — 14:25

John Bythesea VC. CB. CIE.

John Bythesea  (15/06/1827 – 18/05/1906) was awarded the Victoria Cross for his actions in 1854 during the Crimean War

The Citation, recorded in the London Gazette of Issue: 21971, Page: 653, reads:

“John Bythesea, Commander.

On the 9th of August, 1854, having ascertained that an Aide-de-Camp of the Emperor of Russia had landed on the Island of Wardo, in charge of a mail and despatches for the Russian General, Commander Bythesea obtained permission for himself and William Johnstone, a stoker, to proceed on shore with the view to intercept them. Being disguised and well armed, they concealed themselves till the night of the 12th, when the mail-bags were landed, close to the spot where they lay secreted in the bushes. The mails were accompanied by a military escort, which passed close to them, and which, .is soon as it was ascertained that the road was clear, took its departure. Availing themselves of this opportunity, Commodore Bythesea and the stoker, attacked the five men in charge of the mail, took three of them prisoners, and brought them in their own boat and brought them on board the “Arrogant”.  The despatches were carried to General Baraguay d’Hilliers, who expressed himself in the highest terms of approval.”

(Despatch from Captain Yelverton, inclosed in a Letter from Vice-Admiral Sir C. Napier, of 31st January, 1856.)”

On 14 September 1871 he commissioned the battleship HMS Lord Clyde at Plymouth and took her out to the Mediterranean Fleet. In March 1872, HMS Lord Clyde, ran aground  on the island of Pantellaria, and it proved very difficult to free her as she was badly damaged by the incident. Upon examination in Plymouth it was found that her hull was in a poor condition as a result of unseasoned wood being used in her construction. She was never commissioned again and was sold for scrap in 1875.    

The court-martial in April 1872 severely reprimanded Bythesea and the Navigating Officer, who were dismissed from their ship and neither of them were ever employed at sea again. He was retired from the Navy on 5 August 1877. 

He is buried in Abbey Cemetery, Bath.

Rear Admiral John Bythesea VC. Bath Cemetery

Rear Admiral John Bythesea VC.

Headstone inscription

Abbey Cemetery, Bath.

DRW © 2014 – 2020 Created 22/08/2015, edited 14/05/2017

Updated: 05/01/2020 — 14:49

Portsmouth Naval Memorial.

While on a quick trip to Portsmouth I found the Naval Memorial at Southsea quite by accident but did not have a lot of time to really photograph it better than I could in the short time I had. It is a daunting memorial, the plaques on it seem to be endless, and there are 24599 names on it.The loss of a single ship could involve the loss of hundreds of men at a time, and there are no physical graves for most on this memorial.

The Memorial is on the Southsea Common overlooking the promenade, and can be seen from a long distance. Ships pass it on their way to the naval dockyard and it is an imposing site. There are similar memorials at Chatham (18627 names) and Plymouth (23210 names).

All These were Honoured in Their Generations

and were the Glory of Their times

Google Earth co-ordinates are:  50.782507°,  -1.095661°

© DRW 2013-2018. Created 25/03/2013. Moved to blog 05/03/2014

Updated: 06/01/2018 — 15:00
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