Battle of the Basque Roads
The Battle of the Basque Roads known as the Battle of Aix Roads, was a major naval battle of the Napoleonic Wars, fought in the narrow Basque Roads at the mouth of the Charente River on the Biscay coast of France. The battle, which lasted from 11–24 April 1809, was unusual in that it pitted a hastily-assembled squadron of small and unorthodox British Royal Navy warships against the main strength of the French Atlantic Fleet, the circumstances dictated by the cramped, shallow coastal waters in which the battle was fought; the battle is notorious for its controversial political aftermath in both Britain and France. In February 1809 the French Atlantic Fleet, blockaded in Brest on the Breton coast by the British Channel Fleet, attempted to break out into the Atlantic and reinforce the garrison of Martinique. Sighted and chased by British blockade squadrons, the French were unable to escape the Bay of Biscay and anchored in the Basque Roads, near the naval base of Rochefort. There they were kept under observation during March by the British fleet under the dour Admiral Lord Gambier.
The Admiralty, desiring an attack on the French fleet, ordered Lord Cochrane, an outspoken and popular junior captain, to lead an attack, over the objections of a number of senior officers. Cochrane organised an inshore squadron of fireships and bomb vessels, including a converted frigate, led this force into Basque Roads on the evening of 11 April; the attack caused little direct damage, but in the narrow waters of the channel the fireships panicked the sailors of the French fleet and most of their ships grounded and were left immobile. Cochrane expected Gambier to follow his attack with the main fleet, which could destroy the vulnerable French force, but Gambier refused. Cochrane continued the battle over the next several days destroying several French ships, but with little support from Gambier; this allowed most of the French fleet to retreat up the Charente to safety. Gambier recalled Cochrane on 14 April and sent him back to Britain, withdrawing most of the inshore squadron at the same time, although scattered fighting continued until 24 April.
The marginalised French fleet was badly damaged and trapped in its home ports. In Britain the battle was celebrated as a victory, but many in the Navy were dissatisfied with Gambier's behaviour and Cochrane used his position as a Member of Parliament to publicly protest Gambier's leadership. Incensed, Gambier requested a court-martial to disprove Cochrane's accusations and the admiral's political allies ensured that the jury was composed of his supporters. After bitter and argumentative proceedings Gambier was exonerated of any culpability for failings during the battle. Cochrane's naval career was ruined, although the irrepressible officer remained a prominent figure in Britain for decades to come. Historians have unanimously condemned Gambier for his failure to support Cochrane. By 1809 the Royal Navy was dominant in the Atlantic. During the Trafalgar Campaign of 1805 and the Atlantic campaign of 1806 the French Atlantic Fleet had suffered severe losses and the survivors were trapped in the French Biscay ports under a close blockade from the British Channel Fleet.
The largest French base was at Brest in Brittany, where the main body of the French fleet lay at anchor under the command of Contre-amiral Jean-Baptiste Willaumez, with smaller French detachments stationed at Lorient and Rochefort. These ports were under observation by the Channel Fleet, led off Brest by Admiral Lord Gambier. Gambier was an unpopular officer, whose reputation rested on being the first captain to break the French line at the Glorious First of June in 1794 in HMS Defence. Since he had spent most of his career as an administrator at the Admiralty, earning the title Baron Gambier for his command of the fleet at the Bombardment of Copenhagen in 1807. A strict Methodist, Gambier was nicknamed "Dismal Jimmy" by his men. British superiority at sea allowed the Royal Navy to launch operations against the French Overseas Empire with impunity, in particular against the lucrative French colonies in the Caribbean. In late 1808, the French learned that a British invasion of Martinique was in preparation, so orders were sent to Willaumez to take his fleet to sea, concentrate with the squadrons from Lorient and Rochefort and reinforce the island.
With Gambier's fleet off Ushant Willaumez was powerless to act, it was only when winter storms forced the blockade fleet to retreat into the Atlantic in February 1809 that the French admiral felt able to put to sea, passing southwards through the Raz de Sein at dawn on 22 February with eight ships of the line and two frigates. Gambier had left a single ship of the line, Captain Charles Paget's HMS Revenge to keep watch on Brest, Paget observed the French movements at 09:00 deducing Willaumez's next destination; the blockade squadron off Lorient comprised the ships of the line HMS Theseus, HMS Triumph and HMS Valiant under Commodore John Poo Beresford, watching three ships in the harbour under Contre-amiral Amable Troude. At 15:15 Paget, who had lost sight of the French, reached the waters off Lorient and signaled a warning to Beresford. At 16:30, Beresford's squadron sighted Willaumez's fleet. Willaumez ordered his second-in-command, Contre-amiral Antoine Louis de Gourdon to drive Beresford away and Gourdoun brought four ships around to chase the British squadron, with the remainder of the French fleet following more distantly.
Beresford turned away to the northwest. His obje
Chatham is one of the Medway towns located within the Medway unitary authority, in North Kent, in South East England. The town developed around Chatham Dockyard and several Army barracks, together with 19th-century forts which provided a defensive shield for the dockyard; the Corps of Royal Engineers is still based in Chatham at Brompton Barracks. The Dockyard closed in 1984, but major naval buildings remain as the focus for a flourishing tourist industry. Following closure, part of the site became a commercial port, other parts were redeveloped for business and residential use, part became the Chatham Historic Dockyard museum, which features the submarine HMS Ocelot among a good many other attractions; the town has important road links and the railway and bus stations are the main interchanges for the area. It is the administrative headquarters of Medway unitary authority, as well as its principal shopping centre; the name Chatham was first recorded as Cetham in 880. The Domesday Book records the place as Ceteham.
Most books explain this name as a British root ceto plus Old English ham, thus meaning a forest settlement. The river-valley situation of Chatham is, more consistent with cet being an Old English survival of the element catu, common in Roman-era names and meant'basin' or'valley'. Chatham stands on the A2 road along the line of the ancient Celtic route, paved by the Romans, named Watling Street by the Anglo-Saxons. Among finds have been the remains of a Roman cemetery, it long remained a small village on the banks of the river, but by the 16th century warships were being moored at Jillingham water, because of its strategic sheltered location between London and the Continent. It was established as a Royal Dockyard by Queen Elizabeth I in 1568 and most of the dockyard lies within Gillingham. A refitting base, it became a shipbuilding yard. In its time, many thousands of men were employed at the dockyard, many hundreds of vessels were launched there, including HMS Victory, built there in the 1760s.
After World War I many submarines were built in Chatham Dockyard. In addition to the dockyard itself, defensive fortifications were built to protect it from attack. Upnor Castle had proved ineffectual; the fortifications, which became more elaborate as the threat of invasion grew, were begun in 1756 as a complex across the neck of the peninsula formed by the bend in the River Medway, included Fort Amherst. The threat of a land-based attack from the south during the 19th century led to the construction of more forts; the second phase of fort-building included Fort Pitt. The 1859 Royal Commission on the Defence of the United Kingdom ordered, inter alia, a third outer ring of forts: these included Fort Luton, Fort Bridgewood, Fort Borstal; these fortifications all required military personnel to man them and Army barracks to house those men. These included Kitchener Barracks, the Royal Marine Barracks, Brompton Artillery Barracks and Melville Barracks. H. M. S. Collingwood and H. M. S. Pembroke were both naval barracks.
In response to the huge manpower needs, the village of Chatham and other nearby villages and towns grew commensurately. Trams, buses, linked those places to bring in the workforce; the area between the High Street and Luton village illustrates part of that growth, with its many streets of Victorian terraces. The importance of Chatham dockyard declined as Britain's naval resources were reduced or moved to other locations, in 1984, it was closed completely; the dockyard buildings were preserved as the historic site Chatham Historic Dockyard, under consideration as a World Heritage Site the site is being used for other purposes. Part of the St Mary's Island section is now used as a marina, the remainder is being developed for housing and other uses, branded as "Chatham Maritime". Chatham lost its independence as a borough under the Local Government Act 1972, by which, on 1 April 1974, it became part of the Borough of Medway, a non-metropolitan district of the county of Kent. Under the most recent change, in 1998, with the addition of the Borough of Gillingham, the Borough of Medway became a unitary authority area, administratively separate from Kent.
It remains part of the county of Kent for ceremonial purposes. Medway Council has relocated its main administration building to Gun Wharf, the site of the earliest part of the Dockyard, a former Lloyd's office building. Chatham is part of the parliamentary constituency of Chatham and Aylesford. Prior to 1997, Chatham had been included in the constituencies of Mid Kent and Chatham and Chatham. Like several other Kent constituencies, Chatham has proven to be a marginal seat, swinging backwards and forwards on the political tide and always following the national trend. Since 1945, the members of parliament for Chatham have been as follows: Chatham is situated where the lower part of the dip slope of the North Downs meets the River Medway which at this point is flowing in a south-north direction; this gives the right bank, where the town stands, considerable advantages from the point of view of river use. Compared with opposite bank, the river is deep.
Warrant officer (United Kingdom)
A warrant officer in the British Armed Forces is a member of the highest group of non-commissioned ranks, holding the Queen's warrant, signed by the Secretary of State for Defence. Warrant officers are not saluted as they do not hold the Queen's Commission, however they are to be addressed as'Sir/Ma'am' by subordinates. Commissioned officers may address warrant officers either by their appointment or as "Mister", "Mrs", or "Ms" and their last name, e.g. "Mr Smith". Although referred to along with non-commissioned officers, they are not NCOs, but members of a separate group, although all have been promoted from NCO rank. In November 2018, the most senior warrant officer and most senior other ranks position was created, titled Senior Enlisted Advisor to the Chiefs of Staff Committee. Use of the term'warrant officer' dates from the beginnings of the Royal Navy, a time when ships were commanded by noblemen who depended on others with specialist skills to oversee the practicalities of life on board.
Specialists such as a ship's carpenter and gunner were vital to the safety of all on board, were accordingly ranked as officers - though by warrant rather than by commission. These and other specialists retained their distinctive rank and status until 1949, when the rank of warrant officer was abolished. In 1973, warrant officers reappeared in the Royal Navy, but these appointments followed the Army model, with the new warrant officers being ratings rather than officers, superior to the rate of chief petty officer, they were ranked as equivalents to warrant officers class I in the British Army and Royal Marines and with warrant officers in the Royal Air Force. The rank was titled as fleet chief petty officer, becoming warrant officer in the 1980s. In April 2004, the Royal Navy created the rate of warrant officer class 2, superior to the CPO and subordinate to existing warrant officers who were retitled as warrant office class 1; the WO2 replaced the non-substantive appointment of charge chief petty officer in the technical branches.
Prior to this change the CCPO was considered as a NATO OR-8, equivalent to WO2. In non-technical branches, there is still no requirement to hold WO2 rank before promotion to WO1. Warrant officers wear the same rank insignia as their counterparts in the Royal Marines. In 2005, the Royal Navy introduced the appointment of executive warrant officer in all ships and shore establishments; the EWO is the senior warrant officer within the unit, a member of the senior command team. The appointment is intended to be filled by an experienced WO1. Above these are five command warrant officers: CWO Surface Ships, CWO Submarines, CWO Royal Marines, CWO Fleet Air Arm and CWO Maritime Reserves; the most senior warrant officer is the Warrant Officer of the Naval Service, a position held by WO1 Steve Cass from December 2013 and WO1 Nicholas Sharland from 2017. This post replaced the Command Warrant Officer working under the Second Sea Lord in 2010The WO2 rank started to be phased out in April 2014, with no new appointments, with existing holders of the rank of WO2 to retain the rank until they are either promoted or leave the service.
Before 1879, the Royal Marines had no warrant officers, but by the end of 1881, warrant rank was held by sergeant-majors and some other senior NCOs, in a similar fashion to the Army. Warrant officers were given equivalent status to those in the Royal Navy from 1910, with the Royal Marines gunner equivalent to the Navy's warrant rank of gunner. Shortly after the Army introduced the ranks of warrant officer classes I and II in 1915, the Royal Marines did the same. From February 1920, Royal Marines warrant officers class I were once more retitled warrant officers and given the same status as Royal Navy warrant officers and the rank of warrant officer class II was abolished in the Royal Marines, with no further promotions to the rank, although men who held it retained it; as in the Royal Navy, by the Second World War there were warrant officers and commissioned warrant officers. As officers, they were saluted by junior ranks; these all became branch officer ranks in 1949, special duties officer ranks in 1956.
In 1973 the Royal Marines reintroduced the same warrant ranks as the Army, warrant officer class 1 and warrant officer class 2, replacing the ranks of quartermaster sergeant and regimental sergeant major. The insignia are the same; as in the Army, many warrant officers have appointments by which they are known, referred to and addressed. WO2 appointments are: Company sergeant major Regimental quartermaster sergeant Bandmaster Drum MajorWO1 appointments are: Regimental Sergeant Major Bandmaster Corps Bandmaster Corps Bugle Major Corps Drum MajorThe most senior Royal Marines WO1 is the Corps Regimental Sergeant Major. Directly junior to him is the Command Warrant Officer; the rank below WO2 is the Royal Marines equivalent of staff sergeant. The Royal Marines rank of warrant officer class 2 is unaffected by the 2014 phaseout of the rank in the Royal Navy. In the British Army, there are two warrant ranks, warrant officer class 2 and warrant officer class 1, the latter being the senior of the two.
It used to be more common to refer to these ranks as WOII and WOI. Warrant officer 1st class or 2nd class
Governor of South Australia
The Governor of South Australia is the representative in the Australian state of South Australia of Elizabeth II, Queen of Australia. The Governor performs the same constitutional and ceremonial functions at the state level as does the Governor-General of Australia at the national level. In accordance with the conventions of the Westminster system of parliamentary government, the Governor nearly always acts on the advice of the head of the elected government, the Premier of South Australia; the Governor retains the reserve powers of the Crown, has the right to dismiss the Premier. As from June 2014, the Queen, upon the recommendation of the Premier, accorded all current and living former Governors the title'The Honourable' for life; the first six Governors oversaw the colony from proclamation in 1836 until self-government and an elected Parliament of South Australia was enacted in the year prior to the inaugural 1857 election. The first Australian-born Governor of South Australia was Major-General Sir James Harrison, most subsequent governors have been Australian-born.
The first South Australian-born governor was Sir Mark Oliphant, the first Aboriginal governor was Sir Douglas Nicholls. The current governor is Hieu Van Le. who commenced when the term of the previous governor, Rear Admiral Kevin Scarce, expired on 7 August 2014. The Governor's official residence is Government House, in the state's capital. Prior to self-government, the Governor was responsible to the Government of the United Kingdom and was charged with implementing laws and policy; the Governor is responsible for safeguarding the South Australian Constitution and facilitating the work of the Parliament and state government. The Governor exercises power on the advice of Ministers, conveyed through the Executive Council. Constitutional powers bestowed upon the Governor and used with the consent and advice of the Executive Council include: to appoint and dismiss Ministers. Exercising the prerogative of mercy. Issuing regulations and proclamations under existing laws. Giving Royal Assent to bills passed by Parliament.
Appointing judges, royal commissioners and senior public servants. Dissolving Parliament and issuing writs for elections; the Governor additionally maintains'reserve powers' which can be used without the consent of the Executive Council. These powers relate to the dismissal of Ministers and Parliament; these people administered the government in the absence of the official governor. Three former governors are alive; the latest-serving former governor to die was Dame Roma Mitchell, on 5 March 2000. The most recent death of a former governor was that of Sir Keith Seaman, on 30 June 2013; the Official Website of the Governor of South Australia Previous governors on official website
French ship Orient (1791)
Orient was an Océan-class 118-gun ship of the line of the French Navy, famous for her role as flagship of the French fleet at the Battle of the Nile in August 1798, for her spectacular destruction that day when her magazines exploded. The event was commemorated by numerous poems; the ship was laid down in Toulon, launched on 20 July 1791 under the name Dauphin Royal. In September 1792, after the advent of the French First Republic, not yet commissioned, she was renamed Sans-Culotte, in honour of the Sans-culottes. On 14 March 1795, she took part in the Battle of Genoa as flagship of Rear Admiral Martin, she covered the rear of the French line, exchanging fire with HMS Bedford and HMS Egmont, but lost contact with her fleet during the night and was thus prevented from taking further part in the action. In May 1795, Sans-Culotte was again renamed as a consequence of the Thermidorian Reaction, took her best-known name of Orient. In 1798, Orient was appointed flagship of the squadron tasked with the invasion of Egypt, under Admiral Brueys, with Captain Casabianca as his flag officer.
Orient ferried the chiefs of the Armée d'Égypte, notably General Bonaparte. The fleet captured Malta before landing troops in Egypt. Afterwards, the squadron anchored in a bay east of Alexandria, in a purportedly strong defensive position; the British's squadron under the command of Nelson discovered the fleet on 1 August, Nelson attacked the next day, starting the Battle of the Nile. Nelson had his units sail between the shore and the French ships at anchor, picking them one by one in a cross-fire. Orient came under fire from five ships, caught fire and exploded spectacularly at 22:30; the number of casualties is disputed: the British reported 70 survivors, reflecting the numbers they rescued aboard their ships, inferring considerable losses over the 1,130-man complement. Contre-amiral Decrès reported as many as 760 survivors; the explosion is often presented as a turning point of the battle. The explosion of Orient struck the public of the time, both because of its historical signification and of its spectacular aesthetics.
Its romantic load was compounded by the presence aboard of Captain Casabianca's young son, who died in the wreck. Between 1998 and 1999, French archaeologist Franck Goddio led an expedition that carried out an underwater archaeological study of Orient's wreck-site. Recovered artifacts included such items as small-arms, personal possessions of crew-members and printing type from a printing press carried on board the vessel; the distribution of artifacts and wreckage on the sea-floor lead Goddio to suggest that Orient was not destroyed by a single explosion, but by two almost-simultaneous explosions. Dictionnaire de la flotte de guerre française de 1617 à nos jours, Jean-Michel Roche
The Algeciras campaign was an attempt by a French naval squadron from Toulon under Contre-Admiral Charles Linois to join a French and Spanish fleet at Cadiz during June and July 1801 during the French Revolutionary War prior to a planned operation against either Egypt or Portugal. To reach Cadiz, the French squadron had to pass the British naval base at Gibraltar, which housed the squadron tasked with blockading the Spanish port; the British squadron was commanded by Rear-Admiral Sir James Saumarez. After a successful voyage between Toulon and Gibraltar, in which a number of British vessels were captured, the squadron anchored at Algeciras, a fortified port city within sight of Gibraltar across Gibraltar Bay. On 6 July 1801, Saumarez attacked the anchored squadron, in the First Battle of Algeciras. Although severe damage was inflicted on all three French ships of the line, none could be captured and the British were forced to withdraw without HMS Hannibal, which had grounded and was subsequently seized by the French.
In the aftermath of the first battle, both sides set about making urgent repairs and calling up reinforcements. On 9 July a fleet of five Spanish and one French ship of the line and several frigates arrived from Cadiz to safely escort Linois's squadron to the Spanish port, the British at Gibraltar redoubled their efforts to restore their squadron to fighting service. In the evening of 12 July the French and Spanish fleet sailed from Algeciras, the British force followed them, catching the trailing ships in the Second Battle of Algeciras and opening fire at 11:20. A confused night action followed, in which the British ship HMS Superb cut through the disorganised allied rearguard, followed by the rest of Saumarez's force. In the confusion one French ship was captured, a Spanish frigate sank and two huge 112-gun Spanish first rates collided and exploded, killing as many as 1,700 men; the following morning the French ship Formidable came under attack at the rear of the combined squadron, but drove off pursuit and reached Cadiz safely.
The French and Spanish fleets were successful in their aim of uniting at Cadiz, albeit after heavy losses, but they were still under blockade and in no position to realise either the Egyptian or Portuguese plans. The two battles, "generally regarded as a single linked battle", proved decisive in cementing British control of the Mediterranean Sea and condemning the French army in Egypt to defeat unsupported by reinforcements from the French Navy. On 1 August 1798, a British fleet surprised and completely destroyed the French Mediterranean Fleet at the Battle of the Nile in the aftermath of the successful French invasion of Egypt; this reversed the strategic situation in the Mediterranean Sea, eliminating the French fleet based at Toulon as a significant threat and granting the British and their allies in the War of the Second Coalition naval dominance in the region. Over the next three years and allied squadrons enforced blockades against all significant French and Spanish naval bases in the region, including Alexandria and Malta but the significant harbours at Toulon and Cadiz.
This drastically limited the movement of French troops and military materials across the Mediterranean, with the result that Malta and Corfu were captured and the army in Egypt was reduced in size and effectiveness. In January 1801, in an attempt to increase the size of the French Mediterranean Fleet and to reinforce the beleaguered Egyptian garrison, First Consul Napoleon Bonaparte ordered a squadron of seven ships of the line to sail from Brest on the Atlantic coast to the Mediterranean under Rear-Admiral Honoré Ganteaume; the squadron made three unsuccessful attempts to reach Egypt retiring to Toulon in late July 1801. During the final effort, Ganteaume's squadron sailed from Toulon on 27 April 1801 with instructions to secure local naval supremacy around Elba to allow a seabourne invasion to go ahead, before travelling on into the Eastern Mediterranean. During these operations, Ganteaume discovered that several ships in his force were dangerously undermanned, therefore decided to consolidate his crews and send three ships of the line, Formidable and Desaix, the frigate Créole back to Toulon.
The presence of this force at Toulon enabled the French to plan a secondary operation using Ganteaume's new arrivals. A deal had been brokered earlier in the year between Bonaparte and Charles IV of Spain for the Spanish government to provide six ships of the line from the Cadiz fleet to the French Navy. Orders were given that the new squadron at Cadiz was to be joined by the three ships of the line detached from Ganteaume's squadron, as well as the frigate Muiron under the overall command of Rear-Admiral Charles Linois; this force of nine French ships, accompanied by six promised vessels from the Spanish fleet, was to fulfil one of two mooted plans: the first was a large scale attack on Lisbon. Portugal and Spain were engaged in the War of the Oranges and Lisbon was a major British trading port: the French admiral Kerguelen had estimated some years earlier that an attack there could seize as much as "2 millions" of British goods and shipping; the other planned operation, adopted following the end of the War of the Oranges on 2 June, was for the force to resupply Egypt using soldiers stationed at Italian ports.
To facilitate the transfer of the Spanish ships to French control, Napoleon ordered Contre-Admiral Pierre Dumanoir le Pelley to sail to Cadiz. Le Pelley arrived at the Spanish port on 13 June in the frigates Libre and Indienne with sailors to begin manning the newly purchased ships and Commodore Julien le Ray to command them, his arrival was noted by the British blockad
Admiral of the Fleet (Royal Navy)
Admiral of the Fleet is a five-star naval officer rank and the highest rank of the Royal Navy formally established in 1688. The five-star NATO rank code is OF-10, equivalent to a field marshal in the British Army or a marshal of the Royal Air Force. Other than honorary appointments no new admirals of the fleet have been named since 1995; the origins of the rank can be traced back to Sir John de Beauchamp, 1st Baron Beauchamp de Warwick, appointed'Admiral of the King's Southern and Western Fleets' on 18 July 1360. The appointment gave the command of the English navy to one person for the first time. In the days sailing ships the admiral distinctions used by the Royal Navy when the fleet was divided into three divisions – red, white, or blue; each division was assigned an admiral, who in turn commanded a rear admiral. The rank of Admiral of the Fleet was formally established in 1688 prior to this date the Admiral of the White was pre-eminent and regarded informally as the admiral of the fleet In the 18th century, the original nine ranks began to be filled by more than one person at any one time.
The admiral of the red became known as the admiral of the fleet. In November 1805, a new rank of Admiral of the Red junior to that of Admiral of the Fleet was created, the announcement on page 1373 of issue 15859 of the London Gazette stating "His Majesty having been pleased to order the Rank of Admirals of the Red to be restored in His Majesty's Navy..." and promoting 22 men serving as Admirals to that rank. The organisation of the British fleet into coloured squadrons was abandoned in 1864, although the Royal Navy kept the White Ensign; when the professional head of the Royal Navy was given the title of First Naval Lord in 1828, the rank of admiral of the fleet became an honorary promotion for retiring First Naval Lords allowing more than one admiral of the fleet to exist at one time. It was broadly customary for the senior Admiral on the active list to be made an Admiral of the Fleet whether or not he had served as First Naval Lord. However, there was no Admiral of the Fleet between 1854 and 1857 and on the death of Provo Wallis in 1892 the promotion went to John Edmund Commerell rather than the senior Algernon Frederick Rous de Horsey.
In 1914 the criteria were revised and in 1940 the Admirals of the Fleet were exempted from compulsory retirement. Since 1811 five members of the British Royal family, other than the monarch, four members of foreign royal families have been appointed admirals of the fleet. Of the British royalty granted the rank, only one, the Prince of Wales had not seen service in the Royal Navy. During the two World Wars a number of serving officers held active commissions as admirals of the fleet, as well as the First Sea Lord. Following the creation of the Chief of the Defence Staff in 1959, the five naval officers appointed to that position became admirals of the fleet. Recognizing the reduced post–Cold War size of the British Armed Forces, no further appointments were made to the rank after 1995 when Sir Benjamin Bathurst was appointed admiral of the fleet on his retirement as First Sea Lord; the rank was not abolished and in 2012 the Prince of Wales became an honorary admiral of the fleet, in recognition of his support to Queen Elizabeth II in her role of as Commander-in-Chief of the British Armed Forces.
In 2014, Lord Boyce, a former First Sea Lord and Chief of the Defence Staff, was appointed an honorary admiral of the fleet. Lord High Admiral of the United Kingdom First Sea Lord Heathcote, Tony; the British Admirals of the Fleet 1734–1995. Pen & Sword Ltd. ISBN 0-85052-835-6. Media related to Royal Navy admirals of the fleet at Wikimedia Commons