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E18

Built By: Vickers (Barrow)
Build Group: E Group 2
Fate: E18 was due to report in to Dagerot on the 2nd of June. Recently laid mines along the submarine's course home the likely cause for E18's loss

Roll of Honour

EAT Bagg  Chief Petty Officer
W G Bass  Leading Seaman
F Clack  Petty Officer
D N Colson  Sub-Lieutenant DSC
P Duffield  Stoker
C H Edwards  Leading Telegraphist
E A Fox  Stoker
M H Fuller  Engine Room Artificer
G Gaby  Telegraphist
J K Galloway  Engine Room Artificer RNR
C F Godward  Able Seaman
T Guest  Stoker
R C Halahan  Lieutenant Commander
A Hall  Stoker
H T Harris  Leading Stoker
C W Holland  Engine Room Artificer
W L Landale  Lieutenant
F L Maddox  Able Seaman
PJP Nye  Stoker
J R Percy  Leading Stoker
A P Phillips  Leading Stoker
W G Powell  Able Seaman
E Pritchett  Able Seaman
E W Ruaux  Leading Seaman
S A Sheppard  Chief Stoker
W C Spencer  Engine Room Artificer
P Stevenson  Stoker
C W Turrall  Petty Officer
S Welsh  Able Seaman
F White  Leading Seaman

 

E18 was ordered as part of the 1913/14 Naval Estimates and was built at the Barrow in Furness Yard of Vickers, Sons and Maxims. The submarine was launched on 4th March 1915 and, after commissioning on 6th June 1915, joined the Eighth Submarine Flotilla at Harwich and was later sent to join the Baltic Flotilla.

The Submarine was on patrol in the Baltic on 23rd May 1916 when the Commanding Officer Lieutenant Commander Robert C Halahan torpedoed the German Destroyer V100 blowing off the bows of the German ship. This success was reported on the 24th May which was the last message received from the submarine. No reason for the loss of the submarine has been identified.

Two Ratings who had been members of the E18 crew were left inboard immediately prior to sailing on this last patrol and became inadvertent survivors of the loss. Both men survived the War and one became a significant figure in the early years of the Submarine Old Comrades Association (SOCA). The two were:

  • PO John Percival Ryan O/N J690 was left inboard when the Submarine sailed on patrol owing to him being listed 'Sick' with measles. On his recovery he was drafted to Submarine E19. He returned home in January 1918 after the disbandment and scuttling of the Baltic Submarine Flotilla. In November 1933 John Ryan was elected as the Secretary of the London Branch of the Submarine Old Comrades Association at an Inaugural Meeting held in Carr's Restaurant in the Strand. He remained as the London Branch SOCA Secretary until the outbreak of WWII in 1939.
  • Able Seaman Charles Henry Sexton O/N J23950 was a very lucky man who had, previously, survived the sinking of Submarine D5 in November 1914. According to a former member of the RNSM Archives Working Party Charles Sexton survived the loss of Submarine E18 by virtue of the fact that he had been sentenced to 90 days in cells for 'borrowing' beer from the Wardroom. After completion of his detention Charles Sexton was drafted to Submarine E8 - also in the Baltic Flotilla. He returned home safely in January 1918 after the destruction of the Baltic Submarine Flotilla.

Events

01-01-1914 : Laid Down
04-03-1915 : Launched
06-06-1915 : Completed
25-05-1916 : E18 & the Russian Gerpard were ordered to sail at 1800 hrs, the Russian Gepard was to patrol off the Swedish coast for German Merchantmen. E8 was to patrol the Steinort area while E18 was given the dangerous Memel billet.
26-05-1916 : E8 sights a group of German warships 25 miles NW of Steinort, E18 just behind E8, manages to blow the bow of the large German destroyer V100, a second torpedoed missed. E18 then escaped and headed off to Memel.
28-05-1916 : E18 was sighted by a German naval aircraft off Memel during the morning, E18 dives.
01-06-1916 : A persicope was clearly sighted 25 miles NW of Steinort by the German U-boat UB-30, all allied submarines were safely back in base, the Germans rightly believed this was E18. The sighting was at 1500 hrs German kept time and E18 was due to report in to Dagerot on the 2nd of June. Recently laid mines along the submarine's course home the likely cause for E18's loss.
17-10-2009 : E18 was found close to the Estonian island of Hiiumaa by a Swedish marine survey company, MMT. They were guided by information provided by an Australian descendant of one of the crew. The Swedish survey vessel, the MV Triad, deployed a remote-operated vehicle and obtained the first pictures showing the submarine in remarkably good condition.


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