Platypus's Flotilla

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Platypus's Flotilla, a formation of submarines of the Royal Navy named for their depot ship, was established in April 1917 under the command of Vice-Admiral, Queenstown.

History

Operating alongside Vulcan's Flotilla from Killybegs between April and September 1917, the two formations covered a patrol region ranging from 54 to 57 degrees north, west of 9 degrees West in 1917, managing 13 contacts and three attacks between May and December, 1917.[1]

April, 1917

Platypus's Flotilla is named for the first time in the Navy List, formed in this month alongside Vulcan's Flotilla. It is comprised of the eponymous depot ship, and D 1, D 4 and D 6 from the former Third Submarine Flotilla and D 3, D 7 and D 8, lifted from Vulcan's Flotilla.[2][3]

Under Vice-Admiral, Queenstown
Depot Ship
Platypus
Submarines
D 1 D 3 D 4 D 6 D 7 D 8

This roster would apply until September, but the station would perhaps change in July.[4]

July, 1917

The roster does not change, but the station is now changed or simply better specified.[5]

Part of Coast of Ireland Station, North Division,
operating out of Killybegs
Depot Ship
Platypus
Submarines
D 1 D 3 D 4 D 6 D 7 D 8

This roster would apply until September.[6]

September, 1917

D 1 has been transferred out to the Sixth Submarine Flotilla. The flotilla is now a depot ship and five submarines.[7]

Part of Coast of Ireland Station, North Division,
operating out of Killybegs
Depot Ship
Platypus
Submarines
D 3 D 4 D 6 D 7 D 8

In this month, Vulcan's Flotilla moved to Berehaven and Platypus's patrol area changed to a triangle formed by Stanton Banks, Tory Island and Islay. This change of routine yielded ready results when D 7 sank U 45 on September 12 at 55 N, 7.5 W..[8]

This roster would apply until November.[9]

November, 1917

E 38 has joined, coming from a stint at "detached service", seemingly out of Portsmouth. The flotilla is now a depot ship and six submarines.[10][11]

Part of Coast of Ireland Station, North Division,
operating out of Killybegs
Depot Ship
Platypus
Submarines
D 3 D 4 D 6 D 7 D 8 E 38

This roster would apply until January, 1918.[12]

January, 1918

D 3 and D 4 have left to join the Sixth Submarine Flotilla in the Portsmouth Defence Flotilla. The flotilla is now a depot ship and four submarines.[13]

Part of Coast of Ireland Station, North Division
Depot Ship
Platypus
Submarines
  D 6 D 7 D 8 E 38

This roster would apply until July.[14]

February, 1918

Enemy operations in the Irish Sea had become much more intense. The flotilla is redeployed to Campbeltown, which was more convenient for patrolling north of Ireland or in the north of the Irish Sea.[15]

July, 1918

D 6 has left for an undiscovered end. E 23 has joined from Ambrose's Flotilla and is no longer paid off. E 32 and R 7 have joined from unknown prior assignments. The flotilla is now a depot ship and six submarines.[16][17]

Part of Coast of Ireland Station, North Division
Depot Ship
Platypus
Submarines
D 7 D 8 E 23 E 32 E 38 R 7

August, 1918

E 32 has left to an undiscovered assignment. The newly-commissioned R 8 and R 11 have joined. The flotilla is now a depot ship and seven submarines.[18]

Part of Coast of Ireland Station, North Division
Depot Ship
Platypus
Submarines
  D 7 D 8 E 23 E 38
R 7 R 8 R 11

This roster would apply until some time between September and November.[19]

November, 1918

D 7 and D 8 have left to join the Sixth Submarine Flotilla, operating out of Portsmouth. The flotilla is now a depot ship and five submarines.[20]

Part of Coast of Ireland Station, North Division
Depot Ship
Platypus
Submarines
E 23 E 38 R 7 R 8 R 11

December, 1918

The new R 12 has joined, and the flotilla has moved to become part of the Pembroke and Milford Defence Flotilla. The flotilla is now a depot ship and six submarines.[21]

Part of Pembroke and Milford Defence Flotilla
Depot Ship
Platypus
Submarines
E 23 E 38 R 7 R 8 R 11 R 12

January, 1919

E 23 has left to join a new periscope school at Campbeltown on the Clyde under Thames. The flotilla is now a depot ship and five submarines.[22]

Part of Pembroke and Milford Defence Flotilla
Depot Ship
Platypus
Submarines
E 38 R 7 R 8 R 11 R 12

February, 1919

The flotilla has been disestablished. E 38 has been sent to the Ninth Submarine Flotilla, operating out of Harwich. By March, R 11 would be sent to the new Fourth Submarine Flotilla, and R 7 and R 8 to Portsmouth under Forth. R 12 has also left to join the periscope school at Campbeltown on the Clyde under Thames. Platypus would be sent to Australia in May. The flotilla is now a depot ship and five submarines.[23][24][25]

Disestablished
Not to be re-instituted during the Dreadnought Era

Captains (S)

Dates of appointment given:

Footnotes

  1. The Technical History and Index, Vol. 1, Part 1. pp. 5, 6.
  2. Supplement to the Monthly Navy List. (April, 1917). p. 14.
  3. Supplement to the Monthly Navy List. (March, 1917). pp. 14, 16.
  4. Supplement to the Monthly Navy List. (May, 1917). p. 14 and Supplements through September.
  5. Supplement to the Monthly Navy List. (July, 1917). p. 17.
  6. Supplement to the Monthly Navy List. (August, 1917). p. 17.
  7. Supplement to the Monthly Navy List. (September, 1917). pp. 17, 18.
  8. The Technical History and Index, Vol. 1, Part 1. p. 6.
  9. Supplement to the Monthly Navy List. (October, 1917). p. 17.
  10. Supplement to the Monthly Navy List. (November, 1917). p. 17.
  11. Supplement to the Monthly Navy List. (October, 1917). p. 14.
  12. Supplement to the Monthly Navy List. (December, 1917). p. 17.
  13. Supplement to the Monthly Navy List. (January, 1917). pp. 17, 18.
  14. Supplement to the Monthly Navy List. (February, 1918). p. 17 and Supplements through July.
  15. The Technical History and Index, Vol. 1, Part 1. p. 7.
  16. Supplement to the Monthly Navy List. (July, 1918). p. 18.
  17. Supplement to the Monthly Navy List. (June, 1918). p. 19.
  18. Supplement to the Monthly Navy List. (August, 1918). p. 18.
  19. Supplements for September and October were not found.
  20. Supplement to the Monthly Navy List. (November, 1918). pp. 16, 18.
  21. Supplement to the Monthly Navy List. (December, 1918). pp. 17.
  22. Supplement to the Monthly Navy List. (January, 1919). p. 17.
  23. Supplement to the Monthly Navy List. (February, 1919). p. 13.
  24. Supplement to the Monthly Navy List. (March, 1919). pp. 12, 14.
  25. Supplement to the Monthly Navy List. (May, 1919). p. 23.
  26. The Navy List. (February, 1919). p. 950.
  27. Boyle Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/48/135. f. 138.
  28. Boyle Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/48/135. f. 138.

Bibliography

See Also


British Submarine Flotillas
First Submarine Flotilla | Second Submarine Flotilla | Third Submarine Flotilla | Fourth Submarine Flotilla
Fifth Submarine Flotilla | Sixth Submarine Flotilla | Seventh Submarine Flotilla | Eighth Submarine Flotilla
Ninth Submarine Flotilla | Tenth Submarine Flotilla | Eleventh Submarine Flotilla | Twelfth Submarine Flotilla
Thirteenth Submarine Flotilla | Fourteenth Submarine Flotilla | Fifteenth Submarine Flotilla | Sixteenth Submarine Flotilla
Ambrose's Flotilla | Mediterranean Fleet's Flotilla | Platypus's Flotilla | Vulcan's Flotilla | Hong Kong Flotilla