|Memorial .||Chatham Naval Memorial||24||Kent|
Awards & Titles:
Family :Son of Mary Stonebridge, of 1, Whiteley Rd., Upper Norwood, London, and the late Herbert Stonebridge. Native of Manchester.
Unit : HMS Vanguard
Action : HMS Vanguard - Naval Accident
During the war there were a number of Naval Accidents which we have isolated because of their shocking caualties and the corresponding impact on members of the craft. There were a number of vessels destroyed in port by explosions which we would today categorise as 'Health & Safety' failures.
HMS Vanguard was a St Vincent class battleship, an enhancement of the Dreadnought design built by Vickers at Barrow-in-Furness. She was designed and built during the Anglo-German naval race and spent her life in the British Home Fleet. At the outbreak of World War I, HMS Vanguard joined the First Battle Squadron at Scapa Flow, and fought in the Battle of Jutland as part of the Fourth Battle Squadron. She was a part of the action from beginning to end, but did not suffer any damage or casualties. Just before midnight on Monday, 9 July 1917 at Scapa Flow, Vanguard suffered an explosion, probably caused by an unnoticed stokehold fire heating cordite stored against an adjacent bulkhead in one of the two magazines which served the amidships gun turrets P and Q.
She sank almost instantly, killing an estimated 843 men; there were only two survivors. The site is now designated as a controlled site under the Protection of Military Remains Act. In terms of loss of life, the destruction of the Vanguard remains the most catastrophic accidental explosion in the history of the UK, and one of the worst accidental losses of the Royal Navy. 15 Freemasons died on HMS Vanguard. They were; STONEBRIDGE Herbert Artificer PEIRSON Edward Leslie Assistant Paymaster BROWNING Percy Garnet Chief Petty Officer SEAL William Henry. Chief Petty Officer SMITH Richard Maurice Chief Petty Officer THORPE Robert William Chief Petty Officer HARVEY William Chief Stoker TIDMARSH Alfred Henry Chief Stoker GREENAWAY Walter Joseph Henry Cook TAYLOR Victor William Engine Room Artificer STEVENS Philip Bennett Fleet Paymaster BARTON Enoch Seaman SMITH Ernest Sick Berth Steward HOLLAND Andrew Steward RAYNER Edward Surgeon
|Type||Lodge Name and No.||Province/District :|
|Mother :||King's Navy No. 2901 E.C.||East Kent|
10th April 1916
The project globally acknowledges the following as sources of information for research across the whole database:
- The Commonwealth War Graves Commission
- The (UK) National Archives
- Ancestry.co.uk - Genealogy, Family Trees & Family History online
- ugle.org.uk - The records of the United Grand Lodge of England including the Library and Museum of Freemasonry
- Book : 1921 - Masonic Roll of Honour 1914-1918 - Oxford University Press
- Document : 1933 - Masonic Roll of Honour - Freemasons' Hall Vestibule - United Grand Lodge of England
Last Updated: 2018-03-31 08:33:48