Herbert Masterman Hughes

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Commander Herbert Masterman Hughes, R.N. (25 October, 1889 – ) was an officer in the Royal Navy during the Great War whose naval career fizzled in the early 1930s when he retired to avoid a Court Martial on charges that remain undiscovered.

Life & Career

Hughes's father was the Reverend C. R. W. Hughes of Ditton Hill, Surbiton, in southwest London.

Hughes gained one and a half months' time in passing out of Britannia in January, 1906. He began his naval service with three months in the armoured cruiser Donegal before being appointed to H.M.S. Monmouth on the China Station. On 16 April, 1908, he moved to join the Triumph in the Channel Fleet.[1]

Hughes was promoted to the rank of Lieutenant on 31 December, 1911. He was appointed to Blenheim on the Home Fleet on 30 January, 1912. He remained in Blenheim, until being ordered home on 28 November, 1913, losing some time ashore after injuring a leg in a "motor bicycle accident" in July of 1912.[2]

Hughes arrived home on 9 December, 1913 and was appointed to Forester of the First Destroyer Flotilla as first lieutenant on 16 December – his first appointment to a small vessel. He remained in her until being appointed in command of the "C" Class destroyer Bullfinch on 20 October 1915, which operated as one of fifteen older destroyers attached to the Grand Fleet until Hughes was asked to report to the Admiralty on 9 August 1916. On the 12th of August, he was appointed in command of Boyne, operating as part of the Devonport Local Defence Flotilla.

Hughes was appointed from Boyne to take command of the destroyer Ruby in January, 1917.[3] He was recommended by the Commander-in-Chief, Devonport for an attack on a submarine on 7 August, 1917.[4]

Post-War

Hughes served in Ruby until June, 1919. Three months before he left the ship, Captain Chetwode wrote that Hughes had commanded her to his "entire satisfaction" and he recommended that Hughes receive a command.

Hughes was promoted to the rank of Lieutenant-Commander on 31 December, 1919.[5]

On 11 May, 1920, Hughes was admitted to Haulbowline Hospital with lumbago. He emerged fit on 24 May. On the night of 1-2 June, 1920, his performance in command of H.M.S. Urchin on the occasion of an attack on the Fenit Police Barracks satisfied the Admiralty.[6]

He was appointed in command of the destroyer Voyager on 10 July, 1920.[7]

Hughes was promoted to the rank of Commander on 31 December, 1925.[8]

In 1926, he completed two parts of a Short Flying Course at Upavon.

On 8 August, 1931 Hughes was appointed in command of the "B" class destroyer Boadicea, vice Eric J. Shelley. In 1932, Admiral Rose wrote that, "I have not been personally impressed by this officer, nor has he been spoken of highly by the two Captains (D) under whom he has served during the eleven months I have been in cd. of the Medn. Destroyer Flotillas." Hughes was superseded in Boadicea on 28 November, 1932.[9]

Hughes was appointed to President for a Senior Officer's War Course on 13 March, 1933. Something went awry, however, as he was allowed to resign to avoid a Court Martial on 25 May, 1933.[10]

In 1939, Hughes offered his services for the Emergency List, but the Admiralty told him they were unable to enrol him. In 1946, information detailing the reasons for which Hughes left naval service were sent to the Control Commission in Germany and Austria.[11]

See Also

Naval Appointments
Preceded by
Joseph M. Kenworthy
Captain of H.M.S. Bullfinch
20 Oct, 1915[12] – 9 Aug, 1916[13]
Succeeded by
Lionel M. Kelly
Preceded by
Vernon Hammersley-Heenan
Captain of H.M.S. Boyne
12 Aug, 1916[14][15] – Jan, 1917[16][17]
Succeeded by
William B. Clementson
Preceded by
John B. Spurgin
Captain of H.M.S. Ruby
Jan, 1917[18][19] – 15 Jun, 1919[20]
Succeeded by
?
Preceded by
George A. Scott
Captain of H.M.S. Urchin
15 Jun, 1919[21][22] – 10 Jul, 1920[23]
Succeeded by
Delorest J. D. Noble
Preceded by
Ronald H. C. Hallifax
Captain of H.M.S. Voyager
10 Jul, 1920[24][25] – 15 Jan, 1922[26]
Succeeded by
Gerald M. McKenna
Preceded by
Edward S. F. Fegen
Captain of H.M.S. Whitley
1 Jan, 1923[27][28] – 22 Nov, 1925[29]
Succeeded by
Walter N. T. Beckett
Preceded by
Donal S. McGrath
Captain of H.M.S. Seawolf
4 Jun, 1929[30] – 13 Aug, 1930[31]
Succeeded by
?
Preceded by
Eric J. Shelley
Captain of H.M.S. Boadicea
8 Aug, 1931[32] – 28 Nov, 1932[33]
Succeeded by
?

Footnotes

  1. Hughes Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/52/195. f. 563.
  2. Hughes Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/52/195. f. 563.
  3. The Navy List. (February, 1919). p. 898.
  4. Hughes Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/52/195. f. 563.
  5. The Navy List. (January, 1921). p. 367.
  6. Hughes Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/52/195. f. 563.
  7. The Navy List. (December, 1920). p. 896.
  8. Hughes Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/52/195. f. 563.
  9. Hughes Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/52/195. f. 563.
  10. Hughes Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/52/195. f. 563.
  11. Hughes Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/52/195. f. 563.
  12. Hughes Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/52/195. f. 563.
  13. Hughes Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/52/195. f. 563.
  14. Hughes Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/52/195. f. 563.
  15. The Navy List. (December, 1916). p. 392o.
  16. Hughes Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/52/195. f. 563.
  17. The Navy List. (December, 1919). p. 859.
  18. Hughes Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/52/195. f. 563.
  19. The Navy List. (December, 1919). p. 859.
  20. Hughes Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/52/195. f. 563.
  21. Hughes Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/52/195. f. 563.
  22. The Navy List. (July, 1920). p. 879.
  23. Hughes Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/52/195. f. 563.
  24. Hughes Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/52/195. f. 563.
  25. The Navy List. (December, 1920). p. 896.
  26. Hughes Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/52/195. f. 563. Month COULD be August.
  27. Hughes Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/52/195. f. 563.
  28. The Navy List. (July, 1924). p. 289.
  29. Hughes Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/52/195. f. 563. This date is possibly read incorrectly.
  30. Hughes Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/52/195. f. 563.
  31. Hughes Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/52/195. f. 563.
  32. Hughes Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/52/195. f. 563.
  33. Hughes Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/52/195. f. 563.