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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
E18
E18

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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.

Roll of Honour

Name Rank Number Hons Age
Bagg, Edwin Albert  Chief Petty Officer  177854    38
RN DoB 28/02/1878. Actual 28/02/1879. At birth Bagg, Edwin Albert Thomas Served as Bagg, Edwin Albert.
Bass, William George  Leading Seaman  201300    35
Clack, Frederick  Petty Officer  195904    35
RN DoB 17/12/1881. Actual 17/12/1880
Colson, Douglas Nowell  Sub Lieutenant (RNR)    DSC  25
Duffield, Percy  Stoker 1st Class  K 18506    21
Edwards, Clement Harry  Leading Telegraphist  J 8503    22
Fox, Ernest Alfred  Stoker 1st Class  K 9171    24
At birth Fox, Alfred Ernest Served as Fox, Ernest Alfred.
Fuller, Maurice Harold  Engine Room Artificer 2nd Class  271261    27
Gaby, George  Telegraphist  J 1764    28
Galloway, James Kerr  Engine Room Artificer 1st Class (RNR)  EA 1085    29
Godward, Cyril Francis  Able Seaman  J 7415    23
Guest, Thomas Edwin  Stoker 1st Class  K 4295    25
RN DoB 03/02/1891. Actual 23/12/1889
Halahan, Robert Crosby  Lieutenant Commander (CO)      30
Hall, Albert George  Stoker 1st Class  K 14150    22
Harris, Herbert Thomas  Leading Stoker  302072    32
Holland, Charles William  Engine Room Artificer 3rd Class  271983    26
Hunt, Charles  Stoker 1st Class  K 13248    28
Landale, Walter Luke  Lieutenant      26
Maddox, Frank Ladbrooke  Able Seaman  224189    29
Nye, Percy James Peter  Stoker 1st Class  K 9941    23
At birth Nye, Percy Served as Nye, Percy James Peter.
Percy, James Reuben  Leading Stoker  K 6463    28
Phillips, Arthur Percy  Leading Stoker  309511    31
Powell, William George  Able Seaman  182354    45
Pritchett, Horace Edward  Able Seaman  J 4417    23
Ruaux, Ernest William  Leading Seaman  205600    33
Sheppard, Samuel Arthur  Chief Petty Officer Stoker  289749    35
At birth Shepherd Samuel Arthur Served as Sheppard, Samuel Arthur.
Spencer, William Chadwick  Chief Engine Room Artificer 1st Class  271190    34
Turrall, Charles William  Petty Officer  204563    32
Welsh, Sydney Augustus  Able Seaman  224767    29
RN DoB 15/05/1887. Actual 15/04/1886
White, Frederick  Leading Seaman  J 3791    23
At birth White, Frederick Charles Served as White, Frederick.

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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