1st Destroyer Flotilla

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1st Destroyer Flotilla (1DF)
Ensign of the Royal Navy animated.gif
ActiveJuly 1909–July 1940, 1947-1951
CountryFlag United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland.gif United Kingdom
BranchNaval Ensign of the United Kingdom.svg Royal Navy
TypeFlotilla
Commanders
FirstCommodore Edward F. B. Charlton
LastCaptain Michael S. Townsend

The 1st Destroyer Flotilla also styled as First Destroyer Flotilla was a formation of the British Royal Navy from 1909 to 1940 and again from 1947 to 1951.

History

In March 1907 a Channel Flotilla of destroyers was attached to the Channel Fleet until February 1909 when it was divided to form the 1st and 3rd Destroyer Flotillas. In March 1909 it was transferred to the 1st Division of the Home Fleet. On 27 July 1909 it was place under the command of Commodore Edward F. B. Charlton until 1910. From May 1912 to July 1914 the flotilla was allocated to the First Fleet of the Home Fleets. In August 1914 it was grouped with two other flotillas to form the Harwich Destroyer Flotilla as part of the Grand Fleet until November 1916. The flotilla was next assigned to the Harwich Force where it remained until April 1917. From May 1917 until December 1918 it was in the Portsmouth Command.[1][2]

After World War One the flotilla was assigned to the Atlantic Fleet from November 1918 to- April 1925. In 1925 it was re-designated 5th Destroyer Flotilla and assigned to its first overseas station as part of the Mediterranean Fleet until 1932.[3] It was renamed back to the 1st Destroyer Flotilla still with the Med Fleet until August 1938.[4]

At the beginning of World War Two in September 1939 the flotilla was placed under the command of the Destroyer Flotillas, Mediterranean where it remained until July 1940 when it was moved to the Portsmouth Command, till May 1945.[5] Post the Second World War the Flotilla was reformed again as part of the Mediterranean Fleet in July 1945 until October 1951 when it was renamed 1st Destroyer Squadron.

Of note: Command structure organizational changes took place within Royal Navy post war period the term Flotilla was previously applied to a tactical unit until 1951 which led to the creation of three specific Flag Officers, Flotillas responsible for the Eastern, Home and Mediterranean fleets the existing destroyer flotillas were re-organized now as administrative squadrons.[6]


In Command

Captain (D) 1st Destroyer Flotilla

The commanding officer of the 1st Destroyer Flotilla held the title of Captain (Destroyers), or 'Captain (D)'.:[7]

Captain (D) 1st Destroyer Flotilla
Rank Name Term Notes
1 Commodore Edward Francis Benedict Charlton 29 November, 1910 – 1 May, 1912
2 Captain Sir Robert Keith Arbuthnot November, 1917 – 1 March, 1919 later R.Adm.
3 Captain Arthur Russell Hulbert 10 May, 1912 – 12 January, 1913
4 Captain Thomas L. Shelford 20 January, 1913
5 Captain William Frederick Blunt 25 April, 1913 – 25 July, 1915 (later R.Adm)[8]
6 Captain Charles Donnison Roper 27 July, 1915 – 8 June, 1916
7 Captain Brien Michael Money 1 March, 1919 – 4 April, 1919
8 Captain George William McOran Campbell 4 April, 1919 – 1 December, 1920 (later V. Adm)
9 Captain Arthur Kemmis Betty 1 December, 1920 – 19 December, 1922
10 Captain Sir Andrew Browne Cunningham 19 December, 1922 – 1 July, 1924 (later Adm. of the Fleet)
11 Captain Kenneth MacLeod 1 July, 1924 – 1 April, 1925
12 Captain Edward Oliver Brudenell Seymour Osborne 1 April, 1925 – 7 July, 1925
12 Captain James Vandeleur Creagh 7 July, 1925 – 11 October, 1927
13 Captain John Harry Kay Clegg 11 October, 1927 – 7 December, 1929
14 Captain Alan Ramsay Dewar 7 November, 1929 – 10 December, 1931 (later R.Adm)
15 Captain Edward Balfour Cloete 10 December, 1931 – December, 1932
16 Captain Charles Frederick Harris 12 December, 1932 - 14 February, 1934
17 Captain Harold Tom Baillie-Grohman 14 February, 1934 - 18 May, 1936
18 Captain Charles Maurice Blackman 18 May, 1936 - 2 May, 1938
19 Captain George Hector Creswell 2 May, 1938 - 1 May, 1939
20 Captain Augustine Willington Shelton Agar 25 June, 1940 - 13 July, 1940 flotilla disbanded
flotilla is disbanded then reformed in 1947.
21 Captain R. Dymock Watson 1947 - October 1948
22 Captain John E.H. McBeath October 1948 - April 1950
23 Captain Michael S. Townsend April 1950 - October 1951
flotilla renamed 1st Destroyer Squadron.

Operational deployments

Assigned to Dates Notes
Channel Fleet March 1907 to February 1909
Home Fleet, 1st Division March 1909 to April 1912
Home Fleets, First Fleet May 1912 to July 1914
Grand Fleet August 1914 to November 1916
Harwich Force November 1916 to April 1917
Portsmouth Station April 1917 to November 1918
Destroyer Flotillas (Atlantic Fleet) November 1918 to- April 1925 renumbered 5DF
Destroyer Flotillas (Mediterranean Fleet) September to July 1940
Portsmouth Command July 1940 to May 1945
Destroyer Flotillas (Mediterranean Fleet) July 1945 to July 1951
Flotillas (Mediterranean) July 1951 to October 1951

References

  1. Watson, Dr Graham. "Royal Navy Organisation and Ship Deployments 1900-1914". www.naval-history.net. G. Smith, 8 August 2015. Retrieved 29 September 2020.
  2. Watson, Dr Graham. "Royal Navy Organisation and Ship Deployment, Inter-War Years 1914-1918". www.naval-history.net. Gordon Smith, 8 August 2015. Retrieved 29 September 2020.
  3. Halpern, Paul (2016). The Mediterranean Fleet, 1919–1929. Cambridge, England: Routledge. p. 296. ISBN 9781317024163.
  4. Watson, Dr Graham. "Royal Navy Organisation and Ship Deployment, Inter-War Years 1919-1939". www.naval-history.net. Gordon Smith, 2 September 2015. Retrieved 29 September 2020.
  5. Watson, Dr Graham. "Royal Navy Orgqnisation in World War 2, 1939-1945". www.naval-history.net. n Smith, 19 September 2015. Retrieved 8 July 2018.
  6. Watson, Dr Graham. "Royal Navy Organisation and Ship Deployment 1947-2013: FLOTILLAS AND SQUADRONS 1947-1971". www.naval-history.net. Gordon Smith, 12 July 2015. Retrieved 10 July 2018.
  7. Harley, Simon; Lovell, Tony. "First Destroyer Flotilla (Royal Navy) - The Dreadnought Project". www.dreadnoughtproject.org. Harley and Lovell, 17 June 2018. Retrieved 29 September 2020.
  8. Mackie, Colin. "Royal Navy Senior Appointments from 1865" (PDF). Colin Mackie, July 2018. pp. 224–226. Retrieved 10 July 2018.