William Wordsworth Fisher

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Admiral SIR William Wordsworth Fisher, G.C.B., G.C.V.O., Royal Navy (26 March, 1875 – 24 June, 1937) was an officer of the Royal Navy during the First World War.

Early Life & Career

As Template:LieutGRN in King Edward VII, as enterpising naval persons were fairly required to do, Fisher exploited a gap in the rules of a pre-war prize firing to have all his light gun crews use the same single, slavishly perfected and tweaked gun mount. It sported a super-sized telescope and the results were astounding: crew after crew was hitting 19 out of 20 rounds on a 10-foot square target at over a thousand yards. The winning performance inspired rule changes for the coming year's competition.[1]

Fisher was promoted to the rank of Captain on 1 July, 1912.[2]

He was appointed to command the dreadnought St. Vincent on 10 December, 1912.[3]

Great War

He was appointed an Additional Member of the Third Class, or Companion, in the Military Division of the Most Honourable Order of the Bath (C.B.) on 1 January, 1918.[4]

He commanded St. Vincent at the Battle of Jutland, operating with the Grand Fleet's First Battle Squadron. He reported firing 96 seemingly accurate shells by director without suffering damage.


Fisher was promoted to the rank of Rear-Admiral on 1 November, 1922, vice Green.[5]

He was promoted to the rank of Vice-Admiral on 15 January, 1928, vice Crooke.[6]

On the occasion of the King's birthday 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.) on 3 June, 1929.[7]


Marder wrote of Fisher:

But for his death when C.-in-C., Portsmouth, he would probably have succeeded Chatfield and become, no doubt, one of the great First Sea Lords in British naval history.[8]


  1. Usborne. p. 4.
  2. London Gazette: no. 28623. p. 4748. 2 July, 1912.
  3. The Navy List (December, 1914). p. 379.
  4. London Gazette: (Supplement) no. 30451. p. 80. 1 January, 1918.
  5. London Gazette: no. 32764. p. 7873. 7 November, 1922.
  6. London Gazette: no. 33349. p. 440. 20 January, 1928.
  7. London Gazette: (Supplement) no. 33501. p. 3667. 3 June, 1929.
  8. Marder. From the Dreadnought to Scapa Flow. II. p. 16.


  • "Admiral Sir William Fisher" (Obituaries). The Times. Saturday, 26 June, 1937. Issue 47721, col C, pg. 16.
  • "Ecclesiastical News" (Official Appointments and Notices). The Times. Friday, 27 September, 1946. Issue 50567, col B, pg. 13.
  • "Obituary" (Obituaries). The Times. Tuesday, 2 February, 1962. Issue 56235, col E, pg. 14.
  • James, Admiral Sir William Milbourne, Royal Navy (1943). Admiral Sir William Fisher. London: Macmillan & Co. Ltd.
  • Template:BibMarderFDSFII
  • Template:BibUsborneBlast


Service Records

See Also

Naval Appointments
Preceded by
Sir John Donald Kelly
Fourth Sea Lord
1927 – 1928
Succeeded by
Sir Vernon Haggard