Northern and Western Admiralty
Coat of Arms Henry IV and Government of the Kingdom of England 1399 to 1413
|Jurisdiction||Kingdom of England|
|Parent Office||Office of the High Admiral of England|
The Northern and Western Admiralty was a unified regional command of the English Navy first established in 1364 that was administered by the Admiral of the North and West from 1364 until 1414 it was formed and then and disbanded on three occasions (1364-1367), (1386-1400), (1406-1414).
From the end of the 13th century until the beginning of the 15th century naval defence and operations of the the Kingdom of England were defined on the basis of geographical location an Admiral was appointed for the civil administration, legal jurisdiction and naval operations of a particular area of England. The Western Admiralty controlled the Irish Sea from Bristol to Carlisle. Within each admiralty a deputy commander or sub-admiral called the Lieutenant or Vice-Admiral appointed to each commanding Admiral and assigned responsibly for enforcing admiralty law in that juisdiction as well as superintending the Wardens of the Coast who controlled stretches of coast line in the maritime counties that were part of their particular region by the 16th century these were known as the Vice-Admiralties of the Coast. Each region had a local defence force called the Sea-Guard Militia an early forerunner of the Sea-Fencibles. The admiralty existed until 1414 when it was unified with the office of the High Admiral of England to create the first national central command called the Admiralty Office.
The Northern and Western Admiralty was controlled and directed by the office of the Admiral of the Admiral of the North and West. The first incumbent was Admiral, Sir Ralph de Spigurnell, Baron Spigurnell and the final office holder was Admiral Sir Thomas Beaufort, Earl of Dorset . In all nine officers served as Admiral of the North and West.