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HMS Waterwitch.

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Mal Murray View Drop Down
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    Posted: 01 Nov 2010 at 20:51
This vessel was not listed on the original roll of vessels that was posted on the Association Webpage. Association member John Dixon posted a photograph in the Support Vessels Gallery and noted that two of her crew were buried in East Mudros Cemetery.
 
After investigation of the records for East Mudros Cemetery and other resources, I have added this vessel to the list of vessels that served at Gallipoli/Dardanelles. Her information (akk I can find at the moment) is posted hereunder.
 
It Should be noted that she is still in service as a tourist vessel based in Istanbul.
 
HMS WATERWITCH
built by Fairfield Govan,
Yard No 502
Engines by shipbuilder
Last Name: HALAS 71 (1990)
Previous Names: RESIT PASA (intended), BOSPHORUS No.71 (1923), HALAS (1954)
Port of Registry: Istanbul Turkey
Propulsion: Twin triple expansion. 2 x T3cy 101nhp 2scr
Launched: Saturday, 17/10/1914
Built: 1915
Ship Type: Ferry
Tonnage: 584grt 363nrt (1990: 339nrt)
Length: 161.0ft
Breadth: 26.0ft
Owner History:
Royal Navy
1923 Sirketi Hayriye - Bosphorus Steam Nav Co, Istanbul
195x Turkiye Denizcilik Isletmeleri, Istanbul
1985 Il-Tur Ileri Turizm ve Yat Isletmeleri AS, Istanbul
Status: Active - 2008

Remarks: Ordered by Turkish Government as RESIT PASA, taken over by Admiralty 11/1914 while building; served a dispatch vessel
Reported sold for breaking up in 1984
Resold for conversion to to excursion steamer and entered service in 1990.

http://www.clydesite.co.uk/clydebuilt/viewship.asp?id=304
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Mal Murray View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Mal Murray Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 01 Nov 2010 at 20:54
The two members of her crew interred in East Mudros Cemetery are;
(Note the different prefixfor the ship in each sail0r's CWGC entry.
 
Name: BROWN
Initials: H
Nationality: United Kingdom
Rank: Quartermaster
Regiment/Service: Mercantile Marine Reserve
Unit Text: H.M. Fleet Messenger "Waterwitch "
Date of Death: 09/10/1915
Casualty Type: Commonwealth War Dead
Grave/Memorial Reference: III. B. 62.
Cemetery: EAST MUDROS MILITARY CEMETERY
 
Name: LLOYD, THOMAS FREDERICK
Initials: T F
Nationality: United Kingdom
Rank: Engineer Lieutenant
Regiment/Service: Royal Naval Reserve
Unit Text: R.F.A. "Waterwitch"
Age: 27
Date of Death: 29/10/1915
Additional information: Son of J. and E. Lloyd, of Chatham; husband of Mary Alice Lloyd, of 143, Britton St., Gillingham, Kent.
Casualty Type: Commonwealth War Dead
Grave/Memorial Reference: III. C. 74.
Cemetery: EAST MUDROS MILITARY CEMETERY
http://www.cwgc.org/search/casualty_details.aspx?casualty=626323
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Waterwitch Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09 Feb 2013 at 18:46

In 2006 I found a photo of HMS Waterwitch on the web site of the Kent and Surrey Yeomanry Museum.  I visited the museum in Croydon and was shown the photo albums of Col Jarvis and given a CD with digital photos of them all.  There is also a detailed diary, which I have not seen, but which is being printed for Salient Books http://www.salientbooks.co.uk/

The albums are very interesting, but there is just the one photo of HMS Waterwitch labelled “Embarking in Tug Waterwitch” Nov 1915.  www.ksymuseum.org.uk/picture/100713.jpg  

There now appears to be no way to get this link from the ksymuseum site, but it still works in 2013. The soldiers were taken out to the transport Themistocles, which evacuated them from Mudros to Alexandria.  It seems odd that people refer to her as a “tug”, when she clearly is not!

 

Waterwitch also evacuated the Sherwood Rangers from Lemnos to Themistocles from the South Pier on 24 Nov – Diary of Walter Jackson, The Gallipolean 88 winter 1998 p 30.

RFA Waterwitch received sailing orders 31 July 1915 [ADM 137/1143/1 F229-234 paper M 05894/15]  (not in catalogue before Aug 2012! So not seen)

 
The crew of RFA Waterwitch were awarded the 14/15 Star from 30 July to 31 Dec 1915 and the Victory medal from 30 July 1915 to 11 November 1918.  In addition a number of crew members have their 2 or 3 medals listed in the RNR medal lists.
 

Google “halas position” for her current position, any recent movements, photos and details.  http://www.marinetraffic.com/ais/shipdetails.aspx?mmsi=271002624

John Dixon, grandson of Lt John Edward Loveluck, 1st officer HMS Manica 1915-17, master of HMS Waterwitch 1918-19
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Rob L. Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10 Feb 2013 at 14:51
Blimey, what a fantastic survivor - be interesting to know if any other WW1 vessels live on disguised - one of three surviving WW1 British warships is in use as a floating bar and doesn't look much like it's original condition - the 'President' on the River Thames is a floating bar/restaurant, formerly HMS Saxifrage 'Q' Ship
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Mal Murray View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Mal Murray Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10 Feb 2013 at 15:04
Passed her by last year on a Thames cruise, was difficult to visualise her in her previous role. Very sad in a way.
To protect our history, we must secure it's future.
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