Lewis Bayly

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Admiral SIR Lewis Bayly, K.C.B., K.C.M.G., C.V.O., Royal Navy (28 September, 1857 – 16 May, 1938) was an officer of the Royal Navy.

Early Life & Career

Bayly was born at Charlton, Kent, on 28 September, 1857, the third son of Captain Neville Bayly, of the Royal Horse Artillery, by his wife, Henrietta Charlotte, daughter of General Charles George Gordon, of the Royal Artillery. He was a great-great-nephew of Admiral Sir Richard Keats. He entered the Royal Navy as a Navigating Cadet on 15 July, 1870, and was appointed to the training ship Britannia at Dartmouth, and left on 18 July, 1872, after the customary two years. He gained nine months' time towards the rank of Navigating Midshipman, which rank he was rated on 18 October. He was appointed to the frigate Ariadne, which cruised the Atlantic and Mediterranean for a year.[1][2]

Bayly was promoted to the rank of Lieutenant on 10 August, 1881.[3]

He was appointed to Vernon on 9 September, 1883 to qualify as a torpedo Lieutenant.[4]

Bayly was promoted to the rank of Commander on 30 June, 1894.[5]

After a brief stint in Endymion in 1896 served as Commander under Captain Edward H. Gamble aboard the second class protected cruiser H.M.S. Talbot from mid-September until 31 March, 1899.[6]

Captain

On 31 December, 1899, he was promoted to the rank of Captain.[7] On 15 July, 1900, he was appointed Naval Attaché to the United States and Japan.[8] He ceased duty as Naval Attaché on 10 July, 1902.[9] His successor, Captain (later Admiral Sir) Dudley R. S. de Chair, later recalled that Bayly "had been recalled, owing to his rather indiscreet conduct there."[10]

He was appointed to command the second class protected cruiser Talbot on 11 July. He paid Talbot off on 12 August, 1904. After a period abroad he was appointed in command of the battleship Queen on 20 November, and assumed command on 8 December. On 5 March, 1905, he was appointed in command of scout cruiser Attentive as Commodore, Second Class in command of Destroyer Flotillas in Home Waters.[11]

On the occasion of the King's inspection of the Home Fleet Bayly was appointed a Commander of the Royal Victorian Order (C.V.O.) on 3 August, 1907.[12]

Bayly was appointed to the third class protected cruiser Topaze as Commodore, Second Class, in charge of destroyers in commission with full crews, on 20 January, 1908.[13] On 22 March he was appointed a Naval Aide-de-Camp to King Edward VII, vice Walker.[14] He transferred his broad pendant to the first class protected cruiser Blenheim on 26 April. On 27 November he was appointed to Terpsichore with the rank of Commodore, First Class for command of the Royal Naval War College.[15] Edmond J. W. Slade, a predecessor in the post, told George F. King-Hall that "he did not think Bayly a good choice."[16]

Flag Rank

Bayly was promoted to the rank off Rear-Admiral on 2 December, 1908, vice Reynolds.[17]

He was appointed an Ordinary Member of the Third Class, or Companion, in the Civil Division of the Most Honourable Order of the Bath (C.B.) on 21 September, 1912.[18] He was invested with the insignia of the order by the King in an investiture at Buckingham Palace on 10 October.[19]

On 1 January, 1914, he was appointed an Ordinary Member of the Second Class, or Knight Commander, in the Military Division of the Order of the Bath (K.C.B.).[20]

Upon learning of his appointment to take command of the First Battle Squadron in June 1914, Bayly wrote to First Lord Winston Churchill: "Keep the people across the North Sea quiet till July, then, as soon as you like."[21] On 23 July it was announced that Bayly's tenure in command of the First Battle Squadron would be three years rather than two.[22]

Great War

On 14 September Bayly was confirmed in the rank of Vice-Admiral, and on 20 December he was appointed to command the Channel Fleet.[23]

Loss of the Formidable

During December the Sixth Battle Squadron had carried out gunnery practice off Portland. Upon assuming command of the Channel Fleet on 17 December Bayly decided that the Fifth Battle Squadron should do the same at the end of the month. The Admiralty gave its permission on 26 December, and at 10:00 on 30 December Bayly left Sheerness flying his flag in Lord Nelson with the battleships Agamemnon, Queen, Implacable, Prince of Wales, Venerable, London and Formidable, and the light cruisers Topaze and Diamond.[24] At 1430 on the 30th the six escorting destroyers of the Harwich Force left the squadron at Folkestone. Throughout the 31st, Bayly's ships carried out "excercises and manœvres" within twenty-five miles of Portland Bill.[25][26] In the evening the ships went into night cruising stations, the battleships in line ahead two cables apart (approximately twelve hundred feet). Formidable was the last battleship in line, with the light cruisers a mile astern of her.[27] Per an Admiralty Fleet Order, at 19:00 Bayly ordered a 16-point alteration of course when abreast the Needles, consequently steaming Westward. Another 16-point turn was scheduled for 03:00 on 1 January.[25] There was a Southerly wind increasing from Force 4 to 5. About 02:20 in the morning on New Year's Day, 1915, while the squadron was passing through a number of fishing craft, Formidable was struck by a torpedo on her starboard side abreast the fore funnel and was seen to haul out of line at 02:30. Forty-five minutes later the German submarine which had fired the torpedo, U-24, fired another torpedo into Formidable, which sank at about 04:45. Despite the best efforts of Topaze and Diamond, out of a complement of 780 men Formidable lost 35 officers and 512 men dead, including Captain Arthur N. Loxley.[28]

After being severely censured by the Admiralty for his perceived mishandling of his squadron, Bayly asked for a Court-Martial, but this was refused. He was relieved in command of the Channel Fleet by Vice-Admiral Bethell on 17 January and was appointed President of the Royal Naval College, Greenwich on 18 January. On the same day the Prime Minister, Herbert H. Asquith, wrote to Venetia Stanley: "Winston tells me that they have recalled Lewis Bayly from the command of the Channel Fleet as a consequence of his loss of 'Formidable', & have put Admiral Bethell in his place. It is rather disquieting, for Bayly was supposed to be almost the pick of our younger Admirals. Bethell, whom I used to see on the C.I.D., is to my thinking no flier. We really seem to have better reserves in the way of Commanders in the Army than in the Navy."[29]

Fisher was scathing, writing to Churchill on 14 January, "He has lost our confidence and that is sufficient reason for his removal and no other reason should be given him! When you give your housemaid warning - however excellent she may be - you don't have to explain. You don't like her so she goes!"[30]

By 23 January however Fisher was advocating Bayly being given command of a squadron of monitors,[31] presumably as part of one of the many invasion plans being mooted at this time.

On 18 June Jellicoe wrote to Admiral Sir Henry B. Jackson, the new First Sea Lord, about combatting the submarine menace: "I suggest Bayly for the general command of all East coast patrols, but giving him a striking force that is kept concentrated."[32]

Coast of Ireland

He was appointed Senior Officer on the Coast of Ireland on 20 July, 1915 and assumed command on 22 July. His title was changed to Commander-in-Chief, Coast of Ireland on 4 June, 1917.[33] The German submarine campaign was at its height and the frequent sinkings in the Western Approaches could only be checked by extremely vigorous defence measures and by exploiting new methods of attacking the submarines. Bayly had all the qualities for conducting the anti-submarine campaign, but for the first two years he never had sufficient ships for the large area for which he was responsible, until, in 1917, welcome reinforcements from the United States began to arrive.

Bayly was promoted to the rank of Admiral on 23 October, 1917, vice Carden, placed on the Retired List.[34] In the King's Birthday Honours of 3 June, 1918, Bayly was appointed an Additional Member of the Second Class, or Knight Commander, in the Most Distinguished Order of Saint Michael and Saint George (K.C.M.G.).[35] He struck his flag on 1 April, 1919. His request for his service in Ireland to count as Foreign Service for leave purposes was refused.[36]

Retirement

On 1 July, 1919, Bayly was placed on the Retired List at his own request.[37]

In 1921 Bayly visited the United States as the guest of the Queenstown Association, a club formed by officers who had served under him from 1915 to 1918, and of which he was vice-president. In 1934 he was again the guest of the American navy when, at the Naval Academy at Annapolis, he unveiled a memorial, which the Secretary of the Navy had granted him permission to erect, to his American chief of staff, Vice Admiral Pringle.

Bibliography

  • "Admiral Sir Lewis Bayly" (Obituaries). The Times. Tuesday, 17 May, 1938. Issue 47996, col B, p. 18.
  • Bayly, Admiral Sir Lewis (1939). Pull Together!: The Memoirs of Admiral Sir Lewis Bayly. London: George G. Harrap & Co. Ltd..
  • De Chair, Admiral Sir Dudley (1961). The Sea is Strong. London: George G. Harrap & Co. Ltd..

See Also

Service Records

Naval Appointments
Preceded by
The Hon. Stanley C. J. Colville
Rear-Admiral Commanding,
First Cruiser Squadron

1911 – 1913
Succeeded by
Renamed First Battle Cruiser Squadron

Preceded by
Former First Cruiser Squadron
Rear-Admiral Commanding,
First Battle Cruiser Squadron

1913
Succeeded by
David R. Beatty

Preceded by
Sir Cecil Burney
Vice-Admiral Commanding,
Channel Fleet

1914 – 1915
Succeeded by
The Hon. Sir Alexander E. Bethell

Preceded by
Sir Charles H. Coke
Senior Officer on the Coast of Ireland, &c.
1915 – 1917
Succeeded by
Sir Reginald G. O. Tupper
Commander-in-Chief,
Coast of Ireland

1917 – 1919
Naval Appointments
Preceded by
Charles L. Ottley
Captain of H.M. T.B. 80
22 Jul, 1890[38] – 25 Aug, 1890[39]
Succeeded by
William L. Grant
Preceded by
Edmond J. W. Slade
Captain of H.M. T.B. 60
8 Jul, 1891[40] – 14 Aug, 1891[41]
Succeeded by
Arthur K. Waistell
Preceded by
Archibald T. Carter
Captain of H.M.S. Indefatigable
29 Jul, 1899[42] – 17 Sep, 1899[43]
Succeeded by
Frederick L. Campbell
Preceded by
Reginald N. Custance
Royal Navy Naval Attaché at Washington, D.C.
15 Jul, 1900[44] – 10 Jul, 1902[45]
Succeeded by
Dudley R. S. De Chair
Preceded by
Frederick G. Stopford
Captain of H.M.S. Talbot
11 Jul, 1902[46][47]
Succeeded by
Henry J. L. Clarke
Preceded by
Alfred L. Winsloe
Captain of H.M.S. Queen
8 Dec, 1904[48] – 4 Mar, 1907[49]
Succeeded by
Ernest C. T. Troubridge
Preceded by
Reginald Yorke Tyrwhitt
Captain of H.M.S. Attentive
5 Mar, 1907[50] – 19 Jan, 1908[51]
Succeeded by
Wilmot S. Nicholson
Preceded by
Henry Blackett
Captain of H.M.S. Topaze
20 Jan, 1908[52] – 26 Nov, 1908[53]
Succeeded by
Edward F. B. Charlton
Preceded by
Robert S. Lowry
In Command of the Royal Naval War College, Greenwich
27 Nov, 1908[54] – 23 Feb, 1911[55]
Succeeded by
Sir Henry B. Jackson
Preceded by
?
Rear-Admiral Commanding, First Battle Cruiser Squadron
24 Feb, 1911
Succeeded by
Sir David R. Beatty
as Vice-Admiral Commanding, First Battle Cruiser Squadron
Preceded by
The Hon. Stanley C. J. Colville
Rear-Admiral Commanding, First Cruiser Squadron
24 Feb, 1911[Citation needed]
Succeeded by
Ernest C. T. Troubridge
Preceded by
Cecil Burney
Vice-Admiral Commanding, Third Battle Squadron
1 Jul, 1913[56] – 21 Jun, 1914[57]
Succeeded by
Sir Edward E. Bradford
Preceded by
The Hon. Sir Stanley C. J. Colville
Vice-Admiral Commanding, First Battle Squadron
22 Jun, 1914[58] – 19 Dec, 1914[59]
Succeeded by
Sir Cecil Burney
Preceded by
Sir Cecil Burney
Vice-Admiral in Command, Fifth Battle Squadron
20 Dec, 1914[60]
Succeeded by
The Hon. Sir Alexander E. Bethell
Preceded by
The Hon. Sir Alexander E. Bethell
President of the Royal Naval College, Greenwich
18 Jan, 1915[61]
Succeeded by
Sir Henry B. Jackson
Preceded by
Sir Charles H. Coke
Senior Officer on the Coast of Ireland
20 Jul, 1915[62]
Succeeded by
Reginald G. O. Tupper
as Commander-in-Chief, Western Approaches

Footnotes

  1. Bayly. p. 18.
  2. The National Archives. ADM 196/22. f. 406.
  3. The London Gazette: no. 26534. p. 4154. 12 August, 1881.
  4. The Navy List. (July, 1884). p. 250.
  5. The London Gazette: no. 26534. p. 4154. 20 July, 1894.
  6. Bayly Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/19. f. 444.
  7. The London Gazette: no. 27150. p. 3. 2 January, 1900.
  8. The National Archives. ADM 196/39. f. 84.
  9. The National Archives. ADM 196/19. f. 444.
  10. De Chair. p. 115.
  11. ADM 196/39. f. 84.
  12. The London Gazette: no. 28048. p. 5390. 6 August, 1907.
  13. ADM 196/39. f. 84.
  14. The London Gazette: no. 28122. p. 2261. 24 March, 1908.
  15. ADM 196/38. f. 84.
  16. King-Hall diary entry for 21 November, 1908.
  17. The London Gazette: no. 28202. p. 9291. 4 December, 1908.
  18. The London Gazette: no. 28648. p. 7107. 27 September, 1912.
  19. "Court Circular" (Court and Social). The Times. Friday, 11 October, 1912. Issue 40027, col A, p. 9.
  20. The Edinburgh Gazette: no. 12630. p. 7. 2 January, 1914.
  21. Bayly to Churchill, 22 February 1914, CHAR 13/26, Chartwell MSS, Churchill Archive Centre, Churchill College.
  22. "Second Sea Lord" (Official Appointments and Notices). The Times. Thursday, 23 July, 1914. Issue 40586, col G, p. 10.
  23. ADM 196/38. f. 84.
  24. Carter. The Rise and Fall of Portland Naval Base. p. 75.
  25. 25.0 25.1 Corbett. Naval Operations. II. p. 57.
  26. The National Archives. ADM 53/6729. Log of H.M.S. Topaze.
  27. Carter. The Rise and Fall of Portland Naval Base. p. 76.
  28. Corbett. Naval Operations. II. p. 59.
  29. Quoted in Gilbert. Winston S. Churchill. Volume III. Companion Part I. p. 427.
  30. Churchill Papers. Churchill Archives Centre, Cambridge. CHAR 13/57/49.
  31. Quoted in Gilbert. Winston S. Churchill. Volume III. Companion Part I. p. 443.
  32. Jackson Papers. National Museum of the Royal Navy, Portsmouth. MSS 255/4/2.
  33. ADM 196/38. f. 84.
  34. The London Gazette: no. 30369. p. 11474. 6 November, 1917.
  35. The London Gazette: (Supplement) no. 30723. p. 6530. 3 June, 1918.
  36. ADM 196/38. f. 101.
  37. The London Gazette: no. 31433. p. 8390. 4 July, 1919.
  38. "Naval Intelligence". The Times. Friday, 19 July, 1890. Issue 33068, col C, p. 12.
  39. Bayly Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/19. f. 415.
  40. Bayly Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/19. f. 415.
  41. Bayly Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/19. f. 415.
  42. Bayly Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/39. f. 79.
  43. Bayly Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/19. f. 444.
  44. Bayly Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/38. f. 84.
  45. The National Archives. ADM 196/19. f. 444.
  46. Bayly Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/39. f. 84.
  47. The Navy List. (May, 1903). p. 306.
  48. Bayly Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/39. f. 84.
  49. Bayly Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/19. f. 444.
  50. Bayly Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/39. f. 84.
  51. Bayly Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/19. f. 444.
  52. Bayly Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/39. f. 84.
  53. Bayly Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/19. f. 444.
  54. Bayly Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/38. f. 84.
  55. Bayly Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/19. f. 444.
  56. Bayly Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/19. f. 444.
  57. Bayly Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/19. f. 444.
  58. Bayly Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/19. f. 444.
  59. Bayly Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/19. f. 444.
  60. Bayly Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/38. f. 39.
  61. Bayly Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/38. f. 84.
  62. The Navy List. (October, 1915). p. 4.