H.M.S. Irresistible goes down

Posted: March 20, 2015 by saraherhodes in 1915

The weather has been far too rough for us to venture out today, half our boats have broken away and a very heavy sea is running. It took one of the Navy Pinnaces all her time to make headway against the tide this morning. Every now and then you would see her nose go down and her propeller racing through the air.

We received some very bad news last night from the Dardanelles. Whilst trying to force the Narrows on Thursday the H.M.S Irresistible, Ocean, and two French boats struck floating mines. All sank but one of the French boats which was disabled, the other Frenchman sank in three minutes, all hands were lost. The H.M.S. Irresistible was surprised by a Howitzer battery, and had to be beached on an island nearby – no British lives lost. It is rumoured that sir Ian Hamilton says he wants 500,000 men at least to tackle the Dardanelles. A few of the boats carrying Marines and Naval Brigade men went out a day or so ago, but I notice they all came back again last night. The way that those boats struck the mines is through the Turks letting loose floating mines every evening with the tide. For this reason none of our boats stay in the Channel at night; and even outside if the wind is blowing their way they have to change their anchorage.

There is a very stiff gale raging now, it is quite impossible for a ship’s boat to put off at all, so we have been having quite a rest. A lot of the boats have broken their painters, and are now most probably bouncing about on the rocks ashore, in fact, even the big boats are dragging their anchors, and this is a very secluded harbor, so goodness knows what it must be like outside.

We have some pretty big boats in here, there are three boats very close to 20,000 tons. It is rumoured that the H.M.S. Sydney is here, just arrived from Alexandria, so she may have some mails or money for us.

The Librarian got a head-ache the first time he opened. He only had about 200 books and about ten minutes after he opened he had a howling raging mob of about 500 hanging round the door, and in the room, and in twenty minutes he was cleaned right out. I can tell you it had him thinking absolutely.

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Notes: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HMS_Irresistible_%281898%29

Current location:

ColoniesMap1914 19140312

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