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Author Topic: Arthur Cook(e) Cowburn HMS Coquette & King Edward VII  (Read 17397 times)

scotchbeefies

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Arthur Cook(e) Cowburn HMS Coquette & King Edward VII
« on: 22 November 2012 01:16:50 AM »

Hi everyone - I am new to the forum and am trying to find out about my deceased uncle above who was on HMS Coquette and HMS King Edward VII in WW1.

I have 2 photos of him and he appears to have propellers on his left arm and one chevron on his right arm when he was on the King Edward VII.

Can anyone tell me:

What these mean?
How I can find him and his service number?

Many thanks for helping me - if you can xx

Joyce (scotchbeefies)
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PhiloNauticus

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Re: Arthur Cook(e) Cowburn HMS Coquette & King Edward VII
« Reply #1 on: 22 November 2012 09:06:06 AM »


He was a stoker (the screw propeller on his right arm); the chevron is a Good Conduct Badge - one awarded for every four years service

Go to the national archives site, where you may search for his records - you don't need his service number, but will need his name, and ideally place of birth and the years he served (Coquette was in service 1897-1916. KE VII 1903-16).

See:
http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/records/royal-naval-seamen.htm

If you do find him, then you can ask for a copy of his service record, which will show where and when he served.
If you are successful, then come back, and I am sure someone will help clarifying the record
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scotchbeefies

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Re: Arthur Cook(e) Cowburn HMS Coquette & King Edward VII
« Reply #2 on: 22 November 2012 04:31:21 PM »

Hi Phil,

Many thanks for your very helpful reply :)  I think I have found him!

Name Cowburn, Arthur Official Number: 310089 Place of Birth: Sheffield, Yorkshire 28-02-1888
Admiralty: Royal Navy Registers of Seamen's Services. General series to 1907. Name Cowburn, Arthur Official Number: 310089 Place of Birth: Sheffield, Yorkshire 28-02-1888.

Collection: Records of the Admiralty, Naval Forces, Royal Marines, Coastguard, and related bodiesDate range: 01 January 1906 - 31 December 1906 Reference:ADM 188/507/89Subjects:Armed Forces (General), Navy

I have attached his record and if anyone can tell me anything about his ships - where he saw active service - what happened when or anything else of interest about him and/or his record, I would be really grateful.

In fact I can't tell you how grateful I am to you for actually helping me to find him! :D :D

Joyce
« Last Edit: 22 November 2012 05:09:08 PM by scotchbeefies »
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scotchbeefies

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Re: Arthur Cook(e) Cowburn HMS Coquette & King Edward VII
« Reply #3 on: 22 November 2012 05:12:37 PM »

I forgot to attach his record Doh!

Here it is - sorry
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scotchbeefies

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Re: Arthur Cook(e) Cowburn HMS Coquette & King Edward VII
« Reply #4 on: 22 November 2012 05:48:34 PM »

I note it does not say he was on the Coquette. What do you think the reason might be that the ship was missed off?
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PhiloNauticus

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Re: Arthur Cook(e) Cowburn HMS Coquette & King Edward VII
« Reply #5 on: 23 November 2012 09:19:42 AM »


The service record shows that he joined the Navy in May 1906, the engagement being for 12 years (that was obviously extended by WW1) - the stuff at the top shows his personal details which I think are straightforward

He initially joined HMS Nelson - at this time it was an old ship (built 1876) that was at Portsmouth, and employed as a Training Ship for Stokers - he then briefly moved on to HMS Victory: this refers to the Naval Barracks at Portsmouth.  I note a short period on the Hecla - another old ship, which in 1907 was at Chatham as a Depot Ship. 
His first seagoing ship was the battleship King Edward VII.  Note that his rating moves from Stoker 2nd Class to Stoker 1st Class and in 1910 he is an Acting Leading Stoker.  The last column is for 'character'; he starts off as 'VG' (very good) but moves to 'Supr' (Superior).  Note the 'badges' column which records the awarding of Good Conduct Badges (chevrons) which were awarded in 1909 and 1914.
In 1910 he is back on shore in barracks at Portsmouth (Victory) before spending a short period with HMS Fisgard: this was another training ship, for mechanics and artificers, at Portsmouth. He probably did some more training, as he is noted as being an Acting Stoker Petty Officer after this.
In 1911 he goes back to sea, this time onboard the cruiser HMS Hampshire.

A brief period on the old cruiser Flora, then to shore barracks at Chatham (HMS Pembroke) and Portsmouth (Victory and Vernon) before a short period on the cruiser Liverpool and then in August 1915 he joins the cruiser HMS Birkenhead, which he serves on through WW1, being discharged in April 1919.

I will try and find out a little more about the movements of KEVII - Hampshire - Liverpool - Birkenhead and get back to you.

Re: Coquette: was a destroyer, and in records of the time it was normal for all the accounting/paperwork etc to be done on a larger, parent ship. I would suspect that during one of the spells shown on his record as being in barracks, he was with the Coquette.
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scotchbeefies

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Re: Arthur Cook(e) Cowburn HMS Coquette & King Edward VII
« Reply #6 on: 23 November 2012 10:24:51 AM »

 ;D What a lot of information you got from this one page Phil. I am in your debt. Many many thanks. I will be extremely interested in what you turn up! I do remember my mum saying something about a Dreadnought 'project'?? Would that make any sense to you at all?

Thank you is a small word for filling in the gaps here for me...but Thank You :-*
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PhiloNauticus

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Re: Arthur Cook(e) Cowburn HMS Coquette & King Edward VII
« Reply #7 on: 23 November 2012 11:13:14 AM »


Stoker - as a 2nd class stoker when he first joined, would have been shovelling coal to fuel the engines - a very hard, dirty job, working in extremely high temperatures, covered in coal dust. See:
http://www.hms-arethusa.co.uk/galleries/fearne/fearne_stokers.jpg

As he progressed he would have learned more about the machinery, pumps, engines etc., and as a Leading Stoker, and then a Stoker Petty Officer, he would have been given responsiblity for both machinery and a team of men, and coal firing was replaced by oil fired engines - a lot cleaner.



His ships:

KING EDWARD VII - March 1907 to July 1911: he joined the battleship when it re-commissioned at Portsmouth by Captain H B Pelly, as Flagship of the Channel Fleet.  Service was therefore in home waters - Portsmouth/Portland etc, with regular exercises in Scottish and Irish waters. See:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HMS_King_Edward_VII
http://www.maritimequest.com/warship_directory/great_britain/battleships/king_edward_7/hms_king_edward_7.htm


HMS Hampshire - December 1911 to October 1913;  he joined her when she re-commissioned under Captain Sandeman for service in the Mediterranean initially, based at Malta; she also saw time in ports in Egypt (Alexandria) /Greece (Crete-Corfu-Salonika) /Turkey (Istanbul) / Italy (Naples-Sicily) as well as the usual round of exercises. In January 1913 she transferred to the China station, based at Shanghai & Hong Kong.  She travelled via the Suez canal/ Bombay / SIngapore.

http://www.battleships-cruisers.co.uk/hms_king_edward_vii.htm


HMS Flora - Oct- Dec 1913; an elderly light cruiser, he evidently joined her to come back to England; she sailed from Hong Kong in October, and arrived back at Plymouth in December

HMS Liverpool - July 1914 - July 1915: a cruiser, she joined the Grand Fleet based at Scapa Flow, as part of the 1st Light Cruiser Squadron.  This would have seen most of his time based at Scapa Flow, with regular sweeps into the North Sea. She fought at the Battle of Heligoland Bight
See:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HMS_Liverpool_(1909)
http://www.battleships-cruisers.co.uk/hms_liverpool.htm


HMS Birkenhead - Aug 1915 to April 1919; he joined her when first commissioned, newly built at Cammell Lairds. She joined the Grand Fleet at Scapa Flow, part of the 3rd Light Cruiser Squadron. As such she was present at the Battle of Jutland in 1916.
see:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HMS_Birkenhead_(1915)

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PhiloNauticus

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Re: Arthur Cook(e) Cowburn HMS Coquette & King Edward VII
« Reply #8 on: 23 November 2012 11:17:40 AM »


Sorry, the Hampshire link should have been:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HMS_Hampshire_(1903)
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scotchbeefies

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Re: Arthur Cook(e) Cowburn HMS Coquette & King Edward VII
« Reply #9 on: 24 November 2012 02:38:14 PM »

I have been doing a lot of surfing though the links you gave me and at the photographs Phil. It is amazing to look at the picture of a ship and know that he was on that ship at that time. Especially the ones of the Audacious being towed by the Hampshire and knowing that he would be sweating like crazy shoevlling to get the steam up for that tremendous towing job.

My eldest daughter is fascinated by all this, as am I.
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