Friday 27 October 1916 – We Lost 460

by greatwarliveslost

HMS Nubian

HMS Nubian

The destroyer HMS Nubian (Commander M R Bernard) is struck by a torpedo fired by a German destroyer while serving as part of the 6th Destroyer Flotilla that is at the time chasing some German destroyers. The German ships open fire and as Commander Bernard turns to ram the last ship in the German line the Nubian is struck by a torpedo which destroys the fore part of the ship.  Nubian is taken in tow by HMS Lark but this parts and she drifts aground at the South Foreland in St Margaret’s Bay. Fifteen crew members are killed.

At the South Devon port of Salcombe the lifeboat (the William and Emma) is called out about 06:0 to render assistance to the schooner Western Lass, which is reported to be wrecked on Meg Rock, near Prawle Point. In spite of the furious gale that is raging and the tempestuous breakers on Salcombe Bar, the gallant crew of fifteen succeeds in getting out to sea, and in reaching the vessel that is in distress; then, finding that the schooner’s crew has been rescued by the rocket apparatus of Prawle, and that no further help is needed, they start on their return voyage, but in crossing the bar their little craft capsizes, and all but two of their number drown. Most of them are married men, who leave not only their widows, but also twelve very young children to mourn their loss.

  • Those killed include Peter Heath Foale senior (second coxswain) and his sons Peter Heath Foale junior William James Foale.

Today’s losses include:

  • A father and his two sons killed together
  • Multiple families that will lose two sons in the Great War
  • A family that will lose three sons in the Great War
  • A School Master at Rossall and University College School
  • The father of a 1936 Rhodes Scholar
  • An Artist
  • The son of a member of the clergy
  • A 16-year old

Today’s highlighted casualties include:

  • Captain Hefferman James Considine MC (Irish Regiment) is killed at age 33. His brother was killed in May 1915 and they are sons of ‘Sir’ Heffernan James Fitz Joseph John Considine CB MVO DL.
  • Captain Alec Tait-Knight (Durham Light Infantry) dies of wounds at age 34. He is a school master at Rossall and University College School but had his voice trained and became a professional singer. His son will be awarded a 1936 Rhodes Scholar from St Andrew’s College Grahamstown South Africa.
  • The artist Lieutenant Sydney Noel Simmons (Royal Wiltshire Yeomanry) dies at home at age 35.
  • Second Lieutenant Francis Roberts (Royal Fusiliers) is killed. He is the son of Canon Roberts Rector of Longsight.
  • Private Henry Ernest Crane (Royal Fusiliers) dies of wounds at Lincoln Military Hospital after receiving a severe leg wound at the front. He taught modern languages for a year at Bedford Modern School before volunteering in April 1916, one of the last to do so before conscription is introduced.
  • Gunner William Rayner (Royal Garrison Artillery) is killed in action. He is one of three brothers who lose their lives in the Great War.
  • Private Elder Thomas Reece (Nova Scotia Regiment) dies on service in England at age 22. His brother will be killed in November 1917.
  • Private Arthur Oliver Basketfield (Coldstream Guards) is killed at age 21. His brother will be killed next October.
  • Gunner W A Rayner (Royal Garrison Artillery) is killed. His two brothers will be killed in October over the next two years.
  • Private Arthur Hill (Australian Infantry) is killed at age 16.