In this month

Dates from naval history in November:

1st, 1958: RNR and RNVR combine as RNR.  RMFVR becomes RMR.

1st, 1971: C in C Western Fleet becomes CINCFLEET, a single command of the RN’s entire seagoing element following the merger of Western and Far East Fleets.

1st, 1993: WRNS formally integrates into RN.

4th, 1994: RN Cookery School, Aldershot, ceases training and moves to HMS Raleigh.

5th, 1962: RN Mine Watching Service renamed RN Auxiliary Service, RNXS.

7th, 1995: Rosyth Naval Base closes.

8th, 1918: Instructor, Medical and Paymaster officers take executive ranks, preceded by branch titles.

11th, 1918: Armistice Day, ending World War I.  Subsequently commemorated throughout the world; changed in some countries, notably to Remembrance Day, to reflect World War II.

12th, 1944: Lancaster bombers sink Tirpitz at Tromso.

17th, 1869: Suez Canal opens.

18th, 1998: HMS Splendid, Cdr Ian Corder, fires UK’s first Tomahawk cruise missile.  This event and its build-up featured in the BBC TV series HMS Splendid – Under the Sea; the XO was Lt Cdr Nick Hine, now Vice Admiral, Second Sea Lord and Deputy Chief of Naval Staff.  In 1999, Splendid also became the first British submarine to fire Tomahawk in anger, during NATO’s air campaign against Serb targets in ex-Yugoslavia.

23rd, 2015: Strategic Defence and Security Review promises no further financial cuts or redundancies.  First Sea Lord, Admiral Sir George Zambellas: “ … a remarkable turning point … signal to change our journey from decades of contraction to growth …”

24th, 2014: Announcement that, from 2020, HMNB Clyde will be the sole base for all UK submarines.

25th, 1960: Royal Marines authorised to wear Commando green beret on passing Commando course.

25th, 1975: Start of Third Cod War, following Iceland’s unilateral extension of 200 mile fishing limit.

28th, 1959: HM Dockyard Hong Kong closes.

Principal source: The Royal Navy Day by Day, Captain A B Sainsbury RNR 1992 / Lt Cdr F L Phillips RNR 2018

Britain at Sea – BBC Radio 4 production with Admiral Lord West: The former First Sea Lord in a series on the nation’s naval history.  This one on how the service adapted post-World War II

The RN website carries an illustrated timeline of the history of the Royal Navy, in bite size helpings, here