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What would a CYS be doing at RNAS Eastchurch?

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Jonathan Saunders View Drop Down
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    Posted: 17 Feb 2011 at 17:30

On my G/Gfthrs RN service papers he is shown as having been at HMS Pembroke II between 08/11/1913 and 30/03/1914.  To the best of my knowledge, at that time, HMS Pembroke II was otherwise known as RNAS Eastchurch on the Isle of Sheppey, Kent. 

 

As a Chief Yeoman of Signals I am a little ignorant as to what his role would have been at RNAS Eastchurch and I wondered if this could be just an administrative posting. 

 

His immediate prior posting had been two months onboard HMS Forward, which led the 3rd Flotilla at the Nore ie. off Sheppey.  Going back further and quite a substantial part of his career had been in West Indies and Chinese waters and I don’t know what type of leave entitlement could have been accumulated.

 

On the 31/03/1914 he joined HMS Vanguard on the day of her re-commissioning following a refit at Sheerness dockyard and had presumably been ear-marked to join her for some considerable period.

 

Because of my interest in aviation it would be nice to know whether G/Gfthr did actually serve at RNAS Eastchurch.

 

Does anyone have any thoughts on this?

 

Thanks and regards,

 

Jonathan S

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NickForder View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote NickForder Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 17 Feb 2011 at 17:42
Jonathan
I could almost say 'snap', though in my case it was a great uncle !
 
I was under the impression that HMS Pembroke II was at Chatham and seems to have been for more general training and maybe as a 'peronnel distribution centre'.
 
Certainly, it was not RNAS specific.
 
My great uncle later served on P Boats operating as part of the Harwich Force, and has no known RNAS/RAF connection.
 
I thought that 'Eastchurch' was RNAS Eastchurch, though personnel were originally on the books of HMS Acteon ?
Nick 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Jonathan Saunders Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 17 Feb 2011 at 19:41
Hi Nick,
 
I am pretty sure that when I looked at this closely HMS Pembroke II was first used to designate the RNAS station at Eastchurch, Isle of Sheppey, and was in use between 1913 and 1918.  (In 1918 it obviously transfers to the RAF).
 
However, a quick search on the Great War Forum turned this up, embarrasingly from 12 months ago and on a thread I was involved in:
 
Quote:
have more than a few papers at home, what i notice as a trend is this, for Chatham Ratings, HMS Pembroke I for Able Seaman, Leadings Seaman and so on, Signalman & Telegraphists. HMS Pembroke II for Stokers and ERA's, this is a common theme on all their papers. Tends to cover a variety of reasons such as standing by a completeing ship, waiting to be drafted, sick, travel and so on. What i have not seen is Pembroke I on Stoker's papers as a comon theme, and i'm sure many would have fallen ill.
Unquote.
 
So it would appear Pembroke II had a multiple use as I am reasonably confident regarding RNAS Eastchurch, although Pembroke II may have been an official designation for Eastchurch it may not have been used widely ie. your mention of HMS Acteon.
 
Thanks and regards,
 
Jonathan S
-sorry about the italics I cant seem to change the font back.



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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote NickForder Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 01 Mar 2011 at 17:16
Station Operations Admin Both Date
Luce Bay Commander-in-Chief, Scotland Rear Admiral, Larne 31.3.1918
Malta HMS Queen II 31.3.1918
Manstone HMS Daedalus Commander-in-Chief, Nore 31.3.1918
Mullion HMS Daedalus Plymouth 31.3.1918
Newlyn HMS Daedalus 31.3.1918
Paris Admiralty 31.3.1918
Pembroke Airship Station Vice Admiral, Old Milford 31.3.1918
Plymouth HMS Daedalus 31.3.1918
Polegate Commander-in-Chief, Portsmouth 31.3.1918
Pulham Commodore-in-Chief, Lowestoft 31.3.1918
Roehampton Admiralty 31.3.1918
Scilly Isles HMS Daedalus 31.3.1918
South Shields Rear Admiral commanding East of England Senior Naval Officer, Tyne 31.3.1918
St Pol Vice Admiral, Dover 31.3.1918
Vendome Admiralty 31.3.1918
Westgate HMS Daedalus Commander-in-Chief, Nore 31.3.1918
Wormwood Scrubs Admiralty 31.3.1918
White City Admiralty 31.3.1918
Yarmouth Commodore-in-Chief, Lowestoft 31.3.1918
No 1 Wing Vice Admiral, Dover 31.3.1918
No 4 Wing Vice Admiral, Dover 31.3.1918
No 5 Wing Vice Admiral, Dover 31.3.1918
No 2 Wing HMS Ark Royal 31.3.1918
No 6 Wing HMS Queen 31.3.1918
Angelsey Senior Naval Officer, Holyhead 31.3.1918
Barrow-in-Furness Senior Naval Officer, Holyhead 31.3.1918
Caldale Commander-in-Chief, Home Flet Vice Admiral, Orkneys and Shetland 31.3.1918
Calshot Commander-in-Chief, Portsmouth 31.3.1918
Capel Vice Admiral, Dover 31.3.1918
Cattewater HMS Daedalus 31.3.1918
Chingford Admiralty 31.3.1918
Cranwell HMS Daedalus 31.3.1918
Crystal Palace Admiralty 31.3.1918
Dover Vice Admiral, Dover 31.3.1918
Dunkirk Vice Admiral, Dover 31.3.1918
Dunkirk Seaplne Station Attached RFC 31.3.1918
East Fortune Commander-in-Chief, Coast of Scotland 31.3.1918
Eastbourne Vice Admiral, Nore 31.3.1918
Eastchurch HMS Daedalus Commander-in-Chief, Nore 31.3.1918
East Africa Commander-in-Chief, Cape 31.3.1918
Felixstowe Commodore-in-Chief, Harwich 31.3.1918
Gibraltar Senior Naval Officer, Gibraltar 31.3.1918
Grain HMS Daedalus Commander-in-Chief, Nore 31.3.1918
Hendon Admiralty 31.3.1918
Howdon Rear Admiral Commanding East Coast 31.3.1918
Killingholme Rear Admiral Commanding East Coast 31.3.1918
Kingsnorth HMS Daedalus Commander-in-Chief, Nore 31.3.1918
No 2 KBS Admiralty 31.3.1918
No 5 KBS Commander-in-Chief, Home Fleet 31.3.1918
No 11 KBS Vice Admiral, Dover 31.3.1918
Longside Commander-in-Chief, Coast of Scotland 31.3.1918
All other stations HMS President 31.3.1918
RNAS (except airships) HMS Pembroke 31.7.1914
RNAS airships HMS President 31.7.1914
RNAS HMS Actaeon <7.5.1913
HQ Naval Wing RFC HMS Hermes 7.5.1913=31.12.1913
HQ Naval Wing RFC Central Air Office, Sheerness >1.1.1914
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote NickForder Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 01 Mar 2011 at 17:17
HMS Pembroke remained a centre for naval personnel postings out through WW2.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Jonathan Saunders Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 01 Mar 2011 at 17:28
Hi Nick,
 
I see in your list the reference to Eastchurch being connected to HMS Daedalus.
 
I think I took the Pembroke II/ Eastchurch aerodrome connection from a book I have on Stone Frigates - I dont have that at hand at present, but I have just googled Pembroke II and Eastchurch and their are numerous references to Eastchurch being designated Pembroke II during the RNAS period, hence my original confusion as "Pembroke II" appears to have had multiple designations!
 
Kind regards,
 
Jonathan S
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote John1674 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 Jul 2012 at 17:58

I know this is an old thread but I do have the answer to your question.

 
Eastchurch was the home of the Royal Aero Club which offered to train four RN officers to fly. The navy required that all applicants be able to pay their own club fees. In late 1911 the owner of the aerodrome at Eastchurch gave the RN ten acres adjacent to the aerodrome which became the first Royal Naval Air Station...  But it was known as the Eastchurch Naval Flying School – and I suspect that this was it’s postal address.

 

Let’s go back to the four young naval officers. An officer could not be expected to clean his own shoes so there would have to be a couple of stewards – who were entitled to their rum ration and needed to be fed, housed and clothed, so you’d need more personnel and a disciplinary infrastructure.

 

All these people needed to be paid and generally catered for and this task fell to His/Her Majesty’s Dockyard (HMD) Chatham. HMD Chatham employed civilians but in order to employ Jolly Jack Tar it needed to be designated as one of His/Her Majesty’s Ships – in this case HMS Pembroke (Portsmouth was Nelson, Devonport was Drake). Sailors leaving a seagoing ship in the Nore and awaiting their next draft to another would find their bed and board in barracks at HMS Pembroke.

 

Suddenly we have the need to deploy RN personnel to shore establishments but to cut administration costs we do not transfer staff to carry out administrative duties – we simply open a new office in an established facility (HMD Chatham) and call it (to avoid confusion) HMS Pembroke II. They can also handle the pay and conditions for other disembarked personnel (P ships) or minor research establishments in their area.

 

Why do sailors have to be on a ship?  Servicemen have to request for everything in writing. As late as 1989 when I left the RN the request forms had a box which was entitled “G/T/UA/RA” T was for temperance, UA for under age and RA was for victualled ashore in any of these instances you were not allowed to put G for grog.

 

Certainly while I was serving at RAF Honington I was victualled (and paid) by HMS Heron (RNAS Yeovilton) as were matelots serving in Leuchars. The rum ration had long gone but we still got 300 duty free cigarettes a month!

 

In short HMS Pembroke II was simply the administrative ship that was paying RN personnel.

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