Part of the Acorn Archive

Hearts of Oak



Visitors to Mountís Bay



The Grand Fleet gathered in Mountís Bay.

One incident was the collision of the BARFLEUR with another ship.

My father could never remember which ship,

but he said his father told him it began with a ďCĒ.

There is a reference to that ship being named CANOPUS.

I am looking for details of that visit, but it is shown on a postcard.








In 1910, the Fleet of200 warships arrived for a review by King George V. However,

a turn in the weather forced the decision to up anchors and set off for a safer bay.


The Royal Yacht, however, did pass through the Fleet,

as a preparatory exercise,

whilst they were in Mountís Bay on the 18th July 1910,

awaiting His Majestyís arrival.


On the 23rd July, Claude Graham White made his historic flight, in a Farman aircraft, over the Fleet, having requested permission of Admiral William May to drop an object on to the deck of the DREADNOUGHT.It was this event that prompted the view that aircraft, as small and frail as they were,

could prove to be a serious weapon in wartime.


The unfortunate result, of the sudden departure of the Fleet,

was that bread and pasties, which people had been making all night,

was no longer needed for the dayís hospitality.

My father said that his mother told him there were street parties

given to feed the poor of the town, to use up the food.


The Times 25 July 1910

The Fleet in Torbay

The Fleet, under the command of Sir William May, arrived here quite unexpectedly soon after 8 o'clock this morning and moored in the bay. That the ships should have had to leave the West was a great disappointment for the people of Penzance, where the arrival of the King had been looked forward to, and where the hospitable Cornishmen had made arrangements for entertaining the officers. But Mount's Bay is a most exposed roadstead. It is open to the southward and wastward and a gale brings in a considerable sea, from which there is no shelter. When, therefore, it began to blow hard yesterday and the barometer was falling, it was decided to move the Fleet more to the eastward, and at 6 o'clock in the evening the ships unmoored and stood up Channel at moderate speed so as to reach Torbay this morning. The force under Sir William may is remarkable because, while it serves to present in a concrete shape the development of naval material, it does not contain a single ship which can be strictly described as obsolete. There are actually in this force 36 battleships, 23 armoured cruisers, and six protected cruisers. In addition to these 65 vessels there are some 48 destroyers with their parent ships and scouts, submarines of the latest type, and fleet auxiliaries.


The Times 26th July 1910

This morning the numbers of the Fleet were completed by the coming of the submarines. these vessels had, it seems, remained snugly secured within the little harbour at Penzance when the bigger ships left. When, however, the wind shifted and there was somewhat less sea than on Monday night they got under way and, accompanied by their parent ship, came up the Channel. Led by the BONAVENTURE, the submarines came around Berry Head just before 8 and, passing the lines of cruisers on the Brixham side of the bay, took up their moorings inshore of all the other vessels between Torquay and Paignton.







Raymond Forward