Account of Prince Albert at the Battle of Jutland
We went to "Action Stations" at 4.30 p.m. and saw the Battle Cruisers in action ahead of us on the starboard bow. Some of the other cruisers were firing on the port bow. As we came up the Lion, leading our Battle Cruisers, appeared to be on fire the port side of the forecastle, but it was not serious. They turned up to starboard so as not to cut across the bows of the Fleet. As far as one could see only 2 German Battle Squadrons and all their Battle Cruisers were out. The Colossus leading the 6th division with the Collingwood her next astern were nearest the enemy. The whole Fleet deployed at 5.0 and opened out. We opened fire at 5.37 p.m. on some German light cruisers. The Collingwood's second salvo hit one of them which set her on fire, and sank after two more salvoes were fired into her. We then shifted on to another light cruiser and helped to sink her as well. Our next target was a battle cruiser, we think the Derrflinger [sic] or Lützow, and one of the Collingwood salvoes hit her abaft and alter turret, which burst into a fierce flame. After this she turned away from us and disappeared into the mist. By this time it was too dark to fire and we went to Night Defence stations. The 4" guns were manned to repel destroyer attacks. Our 12" firing was very good, though rather slow, as we could only fire at the flashes of the German guns. The range at the commencement was 10,000 yds. and ceased at 8,000 yds. The Germans fired some of their torpedoes but only one of them took effect in the Marlborough, the flagship of the 1st Battle Squadron. One of her boiler rooms, one of her hydraulic rooms, and one of her dynamo rooms were flooded, and her speed was reduced to 14 knots. She succeeded in getting into the Humber. One torpedo passed ahead of the Collingwood and another astern. We had no casualties and no damage done to us, though we were "straddled" several times. That is some of the shots in a salvo falling short of the ship and others over.
The Colossus was hit once in the superstructure which wounded 9 men, and put the main derrick out of action. The Barham and Malaya and Warspite in the 5th Battle Squadron were hit. The latter had to go to Rosyth at once. The 2 former had a good many killed and wounded. The Barham 28 killed, 41 wounded, and the Malaya 38 killed, 53 wounded. The dead were buried at sea. The cruiser Defence was concentrated on by the German battle cruisers, and was hit by several salvoes at once. She blew up in a huge sheet of flame and smoke, and when this sank down, she had utterly disappeared.
The Warrior was totally disabled and had to be abandoned. Several of our destroyers were sunk and some were taken in tow by others. Whether they have all got in is not yet known.
The German Fleet all turned away from us after dark, followed by our light cruisers and destroyers who attacked them during the night. The result is not yet known as to whether they accounted for any more of the enemy. We were not attacked at all during the night and everything was very quiet.
The Fleet steamed south 40 miles off the Danish coast all night. The Action was fought about 40 miles south of the Skaggerak and 40 miles off the Danish coast. We went to action stations at 2.0 a.m. on Thursday, June lst, but there was no sign of the enemy to be seen. We saw a Shütze—Lanz airship at 4.0 am. who came out to make a report as to where we were. She was fired at by several ships. Her range was about 12,000 yds. She made off as soon as we fired at her. We remained at action stations all day till 5.30 p.m. We returned to Scapa Flow at noon on Friday, June 2nd, and coaled and ammunitioned at once.