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4th Destroyer Flotilla
Active August 1909 – July 1951
Country  United Kingdom
Branch  Royal Navy
Size Flotilla
Commanders
First Captain Reginald Y. Tyrwhitt
Ceremonial chief Captain Deric D.E. Holland-Martin

The British 4th Destroyer Flotilla also known as the Fourth Destroyer Flotilla was a naval formation of the Royal Navy from August 1909 to July 1951.

History[]

In 1907 the Home Fleet had a large formation of destroyers called the Home Fleet Flotilla of destroyers, Between February and June 1909 it was divided to form the 2nd and 4th Destroyer Flotillas. Between 1909 and 1912 it was part of the Home Fleet - 3rd Division at Portsmouth.[1] From 1912 to August 1914 it was reassigned and operating with the 1st Fleet.[2] At the start of World War One the flotilla was reassigned to the new Grand Fleet and was engaged at the Battle of Jutland [3] it remained with the GF until September 1916 when it was transferred to the Humber Force that was receiving shore support from the Humber Station till December 1916. The flotilla was next allocated to the Portsmouth Command until July 1917. After being ordered to leave Portsmouth it was reassigned to the Commander-in-Chief, Devonport where it remained till November 1918.[4] Following the end of World War One it was placed back with the Home Fleet until November 1919 when it was re-allocated to the Atlantic Fleet until August 1923.[5] Its was reassigned to the Mediterranean Fleet where it remained until August 1936 when it was disbanded.[6] The flotilla was re-activated in September 1938 until October 1939 using only Tribal Class destroyers. I was next sent to join the Home Fleet from October 1939 – August 1941. Sent back to the Mediterranean to join Force H from August 1941 – April 1942. It returned to the Home Fleet in April 1942 and stayed with it till November. Between November 1942 and January 1943 it was back operating in Mediterranean.In January 1943 it was sent to join the Eastern Fleet in Trincomalee, Ceylon and remained there until October 1943. Sent back to Europe to re-join Force H in the Mediterranean until January 1944 before returning Ceylon.[7] It stays with the East Indies Fleet until November 1944 then is ordered back to Europe to join forces in the Mediterranean Sea until 1946. It transfers back to home waters where it stays until March 1951 it was re-designated the 4th Destroyer Squadron. The unit reforms again as part of the Mediterranean Fleet

Organizational changes[]

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.[8]

Operational deployments[]

Assigned to Dates Notes
Home Fleet March 1907 to February 1909
Home Fleet, Portsmouth Division March 1909 to May 1912
Home Fleets, First Fleet May 1912 to July 1914
Grand Fleet August 1914 – September 1916
Humber Station September 1916 – December 1916
Portsmouth Command December 1916 – March 1917
Plymouth Command March 1917 – November 1918 disbanded
Home Fleet April to November 1919 reformed
Atlantic Fleet November 1919 to August 1923
Mediterranean Fleet August 1923 to August 1936 disbanded
Mediterranean Fleet September 1938 to October 1939 reforms as 2nd Tribal Flotilla/4th DF
Home Fleet October 1939 – August 1941
Force H August 1941 – April 1942
Home Fleet April to November 1942
Mediterranean Fleet November 1942 to January 1943
Eastern Fleet January to October 1943
Force H October 1943 – January 1944
East Indies Fleet January to November 1944
Mediterranean Fleet November 1944 to 1946
Home Fleet 1946 to 1951

Administration[]

Captains (D) afloat 4th Destroyer Flotilla[]

Incomplete list of post holders included:[9]

Rank Name Term Notes
Captain (D) afloat 4th Destroyer Flotilla
1 Captain Reginald Y. Tyrwhitt 10 August 1909 – 2 August 1910 (later Adm. of the Fleet)
2 Captain Mortimer Silver 2 August 1910 – 31 July 1912
3 Captain Wilfred Henderson 1 May 1912 – 5 July 1913
4 Captain Raymond Nugent 8 August 1912
5 Captain Robert Corbett 5 July 1913 – 20 August 1913
6 Captain Charles Wintour 20 August 1913 – 31 May 1916
7 Captain Charles D. Roper 1914
8 Captain Edward Gladstone 3 June 1916 – 7 July 1916
9 Captain Charles D. Roper 8 June 1915 – 6 July 1916
10 Captain Percy Withers 6 July 1916 – 7 January 1917
11 Captain Arthur E. Wood 1 September 1917 – 1 March 1919
12 Captain Dashwood Moir 21 December 1920 – 15 January 1923
13 Captain Sidney Bailey 15 January 1923 – 15 January 1925 (later Adm.)
14 Captain the Hon. Edward Bingham September, 1923 – 1 October 1924 (later R.Adm.)
15 Captain Edmond Mackinnon 1 October 1924 – 29 April 1926
16 Captain Cyril Benson 13 September 1926 – June, 1928
17 Captain Bertram Watson 31 May 1928 – April, 1930 (later V.Adm.)
18 Captain Hugh Rogers June 1930 – May, 1932
19 Captain Gerald Harrison 29 April 1932 – 18 October 1933 (later R.Adm.)
20 Captain Rhoderick McGrigor 22 September 1936 (later Adm. of the Fleet)
21 Captain George H. Creswell 1 May 1939 – 2 January 1940
22 Captain Philip Louis Vian 1 January 1940 – 12 July 1941 (later Adm. of the Fleet)
Flotilla is re-established in 1946 until March 1951.
21 Captain Ralph G. Swallow 1946-August 1949
22 Captain Deric D.E. Holland-Martin August 1949 – 1950

Composition 1946 to 1950[]

Included:[10]
United Kingdom, Home Fleet 1946-1948
4th Destroyer Squadron

United Kingdom, Home Fleet 1949
4th Destroyer Squadron

  • HMS Agincourt (Leader)
  • HMS Aisne
  • HMS Alamein
  • HMS Barrosa
  • HMS Corunna
  • HMS Dunkirk
  • HMS Jutland

United Kingdom, Home Fleet 1950
4th Destroyer Squadron

  • HMS Agincourt (Leader)
  • HMS Aisne - (to September 1950)
  • HMS Alamein
  • HMS Barrosa
  • HMS Corunna
  • HMS Dunkirk
  • HMS Jutland - (to April 1950)

References[]

  1. Hobbs, David (2014) (in en). Warships of the Great War Era: A History in Ship Models. Barnsley, England: Seaforth Publishing. p. 57. ISBN 9781848322127. https://books.google.lk/books?id=nEauCAAAQBAJ&pg=PA57&dq=4th+destroyer+flotilla+Home+Fleet&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwiotf6PwpHcAhXHSH0KHfuwCGEQ6AEIOjAE#v=onepage&q=4th%20destroyer%20flotilla%20Home%20Fleet&f=false. 
  2. Watson, Dr Graham. "Royal Navy Organisation and Ship Deployments 1900-1914". G. Smith, 8 August 2015. https://www.naval-history.net/xGW-RNOrganisation1900-14.htm#2. Retrieved 9 July 2018. 
  3. Willmott, H. P. (2009) (in en). The Last Century of Sea Power, Volume 1: From Port Arthur to Chanak, 1894–1922. Bloomington, IN, USA: Indiana University Press. p. 244. ISBN 0253003563. https://books.google.lk/books?id=IQpsA_Pa3xkC&pg=PA244&dq=4th+destroyer+flotilla&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwj98c_OwZHcAhVOTn0KHR4CDr4Q6AEILDAB#v=onepage&q=4th%20destroyer%20flotilla&f=false. 
  4. Watson, Dr Graham. "Royal Navy Organisation and Ship Deployment, Inter-War Years 1914-1918". Gordon Smith, 8 August 2015. https://www.naval-history.net/xGW-RNOrganisation1914-1918.htm#6. Retrieved 9 July 2018. 
  5. Brassey's Naval and Shipping Annual. London, England: William Clowes and Sons, Limited. 1921. p. 5. 
  6. Watson, Dr Graham. "Royal Navy Organisation and Ship Deployment, Inter-War Years 1919-1939". Gordon Smith, 2 September 2015. https://www.naval-history.net/xGW-RNOrganisation1919-39.htm#8. Retrieved 9 July 2018. 
  7. Watson, Dr Graham. "Royal Navy Organisation in World War 2, 1939-1945". n Smith, 19 September 2015. https://www.naval-history.net/xGW-RNOrganisation1939-45.htm#3. Retrieved 9 July 2018. 
  8. Watson, Dr Graham. "Royal Navy Organisation and Ship Deployment 1947-2013: FLOTILLAS AND SQUADRONS 1947-1971". Gordon Smith, 12 July 2015. https://www.naval-history.net/xGW-RNOrganisation1947-2013.htm. Retrieved 10 July 2018. 
  9. Harley, Simon; Lovell, Tony. "Fourth Destroyer Flotilla (Royal Navy) - The Dreadnought Project" (in en). Harley and Lovell, 18 June 2018. http://www.dreadnoughtproject.org/tfs/index.php/Fourth_Destroyer_Flotilla_(Royal_Navy)#In_Command. Retrieved 9 July 2018. 
  10. Watson, Dr Graham. "Royal Navy Organisation and Ship Deployment 1947-2013". Gordon Smith, 12 July 2015. http://www.naval-history.net/xGW-RNOrganisation1947-2013.htm. Retrieved 18 March 2017. 

Sources[]

  • Brassey's Naval and Shipping Annual. London, England: William Clowes and Sons, Limited. 1921.
  • Harley, Simon; Lovell, Tony. (2018) "Fourth Destroyer Flotilla (Royal Navy) - The Dreadnought Project". www.dreadnoughtproject.org. Harley and Lovell.
  • Hobbs, David (2014). Warships of the Great War Era: A History in Ship Models. Barnsley, England: Seaforth Publishing. ISBN 9781848322127.
  • Watson, Dr Graham. (2015) Royal Navy Organisation and Ship Deployments 1900-1914". www.naval-history.net. G. Smith.
  • Watson, Dr Graham. (2015) "Royal Navy Organisation and Ship Deployment, Inter-War Years 1914-1918". www.naval-history.net. Gordon Smith.
  • Watson, Dr Graham. (2015) "Royal Navy Organisation in World War 2, 1939-1945". www.naval-history.net. Gordon Smith.
  • Willmott, H. P. (2009). The Last Century of Sea Power, Volume 1: From Port Arthur to Chanak, 1894–1922. Bloomington, IN, USA: Indiana University Press. ISBN 0253003563.

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