Colin Alexander Gordon Hutchison

From The Dreadnought Project
Jump to: navigation, search

Captain (retired) Colin Alexander Gordon Hutchison, D.S.O., O.B.E., R.N. (3 February, 1889 – ) was an officer in the Royal Navy.

Life & Career

Born in Hampstead, N.W..

Admitted to Haslar Hospital with German measles on 21 May 1907 and discharged three days later.

Hutchinson was promoted to the rank of Lieutenant on 15 April, 1910.

He qualified as an assistant surveyor on 3 January, 1912.

Hutchinson was appointed Lieutenant in Command of the first-class torpedo boat T.B. 21 on 29 July, 1914.[1]

On 24 February 1915, Hutchison was diagnosed with appendicitis. He was found fit on 20 March and appointed in temporary command of the destroyer H.M.S. Vigilant the following day. While in this appointment, Hutchison proved himself a clever man, inventing an adapter for torpedo pistols that could convert them to a time-and-percussion function. The device was not adopted for service, however. At about the same time, he created a percussion attachment for 12-pdr QF guns, but this also was not adopted.

On 15 October 1916, Hutchison damaged Laverock's propeller by fouling a wreck. He was cautioned to be more careful in future and remained in command until being appointed in command of Mastiff in January 1917. Hutchison stranded Mastiff in May of that 1917 and a Court of Enquiry found that this was attributable to "great carelessness" on his part. In August, he was appointed in command of the destroyer Hope, which was operating with the Fifth Destroyer Flotilla in the Mediterranean. On 23 March 1918, she collided with her flotilla-mate Arno, causing the loss of the other ship. Hutchison apparently escaped blame in the accident.

Hutchinson was promoted to the rank of Lieutenant-Commander on 15 April, 1918.


He may have been awarded a patent in 1919, it was perhaps designated as 8557/19.

On 19 February 1920, the Admiralty thanked Hutchison for his work in developing C.B. 1238, "Methods Recommended for Searching for Hostile Submarines."

Hutchinson was promoted to the rank of Commander on 30 June, 1924. On 17 November, he was sent to work in the Plans Division.

On 9 February 1925, he was diagnosed with a sprained left knee.

Having recently been engaged in surveying work at Port Stanley in the Falkland Islands, Hutchinson was placed on the Retired List at his own request with the rank of Captain on 14 September, 1935. On 9 March 1937 he was appointed as a Naval Assistant in the Hydrographic Department for three years. He ceased this work on 12 August, 1940.

World War II

Awarded a bar to his D.S.O., gazetted 8 September 1942 for "gallantry, skill and seamanship in a brilliant action against strong enemy forces, which were driven off and severely damaged. This action resulted in the safe passage to Malta of an important Convoy." The acting rank of Captain was approved to date 1 May, 1944.

In 1944, to which he'd been appointed in command in 1943, the infantry landing ship Glenearn was grounded. A review of a Board of Enquiry pinned the fault on Hutchinson's officers, who had served him poorly. It was made plain that Hutchinson did not deserve censure for the misadventure.

Hutchinson was awarded his O.B.E. for courage and leadership demonstrated in saving men from a burning mess deck in the wake of a petrol fire aboard Glenearn on 31 August, 1945.

He reverted to the Retired List on 14 November, 1946.

See Also

Naval Appointments
Preceded by
Charles L. Fox
Captain of H.M. T.B. 21
29 Jul, 1914[2] – 18 Jan, 1915
Succeeded by
Daniel H. Rainier
Preceded by
William C. Castle
Captain of H.M.S. Vigilant
21 Mar, 1915[3] – 4 Nov, 1915
Succeeded by
William J. O'Neill
Preceded by
John Brooke
Captain of H.M.S. Ettrick
6 Nov, 1915 – 4 May, 1916
Succeeded by
John N. Knox
Preceded by
John N. Benbow
Captain of H.M.S. Laverock
4 May, 1916[4] – 18 Jan, 1917
Succeeded by
Henry A. Binmore
Preceded by
Reginald V. Holt
Captain of H.M.S. Mastiff
18 Jan, 1917 – 20 Jun, 1917
Succeeded by
William D. Irvin
Preceded by
Lionel G. Foote
Captain of H.M.S. Hope
9 Aug, 1917[5] – 28 Mar, 1919
Succeeded by
Preceded by
John B. Hughes
Captain of H.M.S. Bee
26 Aug, 1927 – 21 Oct, 1929
Succeeded by
Piers K. Kekewich
Preceded by
Cecil B. Prickett
Captain of H.M.S. Vindictive
30 Sep, 1932[6] – 25 Jan, 1933
Succeeded by
Henry J. Egerton


  1. The Navy List. (January, 1915). p. 400.
  2. The Navy List. (January, 1915). p. 400.
  3. The Navy List. (October, 1915). p. 399b.
  4. The Navy List. (December, 1916). p. 395u.
  5. The Navy List. (January, 1919). p. 815.
  6. The Navy List. (January, 1933). p. 286.