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Pre Dreadnought Battleship HMS Alexandra. In 1878 the Alexandra was commanded by Captain Robert Fitzroy through the Dardanelles to Constantinople and although grounded was refloated without damage. In 1882 HMS Alexandra took part in the bombardment of Alexandria under Captain Charles Hotham. Marines from the Alexandra joined the army at Kassassin and Tel-el-Kebir. She also saw service on the Nile. King George 5th served as a lieutenant aboard the Alexandra during 1887-88.

Displacement:  9,90tons.    Horse power: 8,610.    Length: 325 ft.    Beam: 64 ft.    Draught: 26 ft.    Armament: 12 guns.    Speed 15 knots.    Complement: .

HMS ALEXANDRA LAUNCHED 1877 SOLD AT CHATHAM 1903

HMS Alexandra, 1877.

A large image size 10" x 7" approx, is available.  Reproduced from the original negative / photo under license from MPL, the copyright holder.  A signed numbered certificate is supplied. Price £25.   Order photograph here   Order Code  XMP70

Original republished © MPL Photograph (Postcard Size).  Price £5 Click here to order.  Order Code  MP70

HMS Alexandra.

A reproduction of this original photo / photo-postcard size 10" x 7" approx available.  Order photograph here  © Walker Archive. Order Code  PH618

HMS Alexandra, 1877.

A large image size 10" x 7" approx, is available.  Reproduced from the original negative / photo under license from MPL, the copyright holder.  A signed numbered certificate is supplied. Price £25.   Order photograph here   Order Code  XMP72

Original republished © MPL Photograph (Postcard Size).  Price £5 Click here to order.  Order Code  MP72

HMS Alexandra, 1877.

A large image size 10" x 7" approx, is available.  Reproduced from the original negative / photo under license from MPL, the copyright holder.  A signed numbered certificate is supplied. Price £25.   Order photograph here   Order Code  XMP71

Original republished © MPL Photograph (Postcard Size).  Price £5 Click here to order.  Order Code  MP71

HMS Alexandra

Original Photographic image from quality magazine published in 1896 image  size 10" x 8" approx , plus title and specifications. price £20 plus £3 post for UK £10 overseas, recorded airmail  order number ANV1164 order photograph here

In 1878 the Alexandra commanded by Captain Robert Fitzroy and flying the flag of Vice-Admiral Geoffrey Hornby, was at the head of six ships which cleared for action and proceeded through the Dardanelles to Constantinople to protect British interests during the conflict between Russia and Turkey. The Turks did not obstruct the passage of the ships, and no fighting took place. During the entry the Alexandra took the ground, but was got off without damage, and she was told off to attack the heavy 50 ton gun at the entrance if there had been any fighting. It was fortunate that the Turks did not fire, for it might have been impossible to save the stranded flagship. The Sultan which, appropriately enough, was commanded by Captain His Royal Highness the Duke of Edinburgh, K.G., turned back and gave such assistance as was necessary, to enable the Alexandra to be promptly refloated. Vice-Admiral Hornby was awarded with a KCB for his tactful management of the situation.

In July 1882 the Alexandra, commanded by Captain Charles Frederick Hotham, and flying the flag of Admiral Sir Frederick Beauchamp Seymour, lay at Alexandra at the head of a fleet of 14 ships. On July 11th the Alexandra fired the first shot of the bombardment of Alexandria at 7 am, the Egyptians having refused to surrender the forts. Owing to the flagship's draught of water, Sir Beauchamp Seymour had temporarily transferred his flag to the Invincible, but the Alexandra was stationed 1500 yards from Lighthouse Fort. All ships were cleared for action, topgallantmasts being struck and bowsprits rigged in. By 7.10 am all ships were engaged, and all the forts that could bring their guns to bear replied with vigour. By 5pm all guns ashore had been silenced, and the fleet ceased bombarding at 5.30 pm. The Alexandra received a 10 inch shell through an unarmoured portion of her side, which lodged on the main deck with the fuse burning. Gunner Israel Harding flung some water over it, and then picked up the shell and immersed it in a tub of water. For this act he was promoted to chief gunner and received the Victoria Cross. The British casualties were 5 killed and 28 wounded, to which the Alexandra contributed 1 killed and 3 wounded. The Egyptian loss has never been properly ascertained, but it is believed to have been about 150 killed and 400 wounded out of the 2000 men engaged in working the forts. The Alexandra had 24 hits from shot or shell outside her armour, and was struck in all about 60 times.

The men from the Alexandra then assisted in the occupation and policing of the town. Midshipman D R DeChair of this ship, while carrying despatches between Ras et Tin and Ramleh, lost his way, and fell into the hands of the rebels. He was well treated by Arabi Pasha, but was not liberated until the British Army occupied Cairo.

On 5th August the Alexandra contributed to a Naval Brigade which left Alexandria in the armoured train commanded by Captain John Fisher, of the Inflexible. Admiral Sir Beauchamp Seymour and Flag-Lieutenant the Hon. Hedworth Lambton accompanied the Brigade. The marines were de-trained about 800 yards from from Mehallet Junction, and, assisted by a 40 pounder Armstrong gun, quickly dislodged the enemy. During the evening the Brigade was exposed to a galling fire, but the marines behaved with great gallantry and bore the brunt of the attack. The casualties in this affair were 1 marine killed and 12 wounded, and 1 seaman killed and 4 wounded. The Naval Brigade were then recalled to their ships.

In August the Alexandra's marines assisted in the seizure and control of the Suez Canal. 

In September the Alexandra contributed men and machine guns to a Naval Brigade - 250 strong- under Captain Robert Fitzroy, of the Orion, which joined the army at Kassassin commanded by General Sir Garnet Wolseley. On September 13th the army met the enemy at Tel-el-Kebir, and defeated them with great slaughter. The marines attacked the Tel-el-Kebir lines with great courage, engaged the enemy at hand-grips, and carried the position. The Arabs broke and fled, and were pursued for 4 miles. The marines lost 2 officers, 1 NCO, and 10 men killed and 4 officers and 43 men wounded. Lieutenant Wyatt Rawson RN, who was Naval ADC to Sir Garnet Wolseley, was mortally wounded. A few days later the Naval Brigade were withdrawn to their ships.

In 1885 the Alexandra contributed to a Naval Brigade which operated on the Nile under Captain Lord Charles Beresford and took part in the battles of Abu Klea, Metemmeh and Wad-Habeshi, and in the relief of Sir Charles Wilson.

Admiral Sir Beauchamp was raised to the peerage as Baron Alcester and Captain C F Hotham rewarded with a CB for their services.

From May 20th 1887 to July 1st 1887, and from April 21st 1888 to November 5th 1888, HRH Prince George of Wales, later to become His Most Gracious Majesty King George the Fifth, served in this ship as a lieutenant.

In 1890 the Alexandra was reconstructed, and re-rigged with fighting tops, but she saw no more active service. In 1908 the Alexandra was sold at Devonport.

Extracted from "The King's Ships" 1915 by Leckie

In the Petty Officers Reading Room in the Alexandra

The Petty Officers on board ship performed duties that correspond roughly to the duties performed by non-commissioned officers in the Army during 1896. They were supplied by the Admiralty with a number of newspapers and periodicals, and the reading room was a place on board set apart out of working hours for their use - sometimes cut off by a canvas screen - where the petty officers could "recreate" generally, apart from the rest of the ship's company. Backgammon, draughts, chess and games at cards were allowed with the proviso that there was no gambling.

Original Photographic image from quality magazine published in 1896 image  size 5" x 8" approx , plus title and specifications. price £15 plus £3 post for UK £10 overseas, recorded airmail  order number ANV1161 order photograph here

Jack in his Watch Below on Board the Alexandra

Here we see Jack turned in for the night. In the 1890's a sailor slept where he lived and had his meals, clearing a space to sling his hammock in by removing the mess tables and gear used by day out of the way and securing them overhead. To the landsman a hammock was not the easiest to get into, without risk of overleaping oneself and coming down on deck on the other side. Grave consequences might well ensue from a cutting down of the lashings at the head of a sleeper, a not infrequent way among the midshipmen of the old days of paying off scores.

Original Photographic image from quality magazine published in 1896 image  size 5" x 8" approx , plus title and specifications. price £15 plus £3 post for UK £10 overseas, recorded airmail  order number ANV1202 order photograph here

HMS Alexandra, January, 1897

HMS Alexandra c.1898

Captain W H Pigott in his Cabin, 1896

Original Photographic image from quality magazine published in 1896 image  size 10" x 8" approx , plus title and specifications. price £20 plus £3 post for UK £10 overseas, recorded airmail  order number ANV1203 order photograph here

The Company of the Alexandra at Portland

The company of the second-class battleship Alexandra - the Duke of Edinburgh's old flagship in the Mediterranean - assembled in the waist of the vessel. The officers are seen on the port gangway, at the side of the ship, which forms a means of communication fore and aft. In our photograph, the "Red" Marines (Light Infantry) are seen to starboard, and the "Blue" Marines (Artillery) to port, with the bluejackets massed in port and starboard watches, and a number of the petty officers of the Alexandra. The Alexandra was stationed at Portland in 1896 to act as flagship of the First Reserve or coastguard ships. As a coastguard ship she was manned below the level of seagoing complement, the ship's full strength being provided under the mobilization scheme by the addition of drafts of coastguardsmen from the stations nearest Portland and the Naval Reserve men drawn from the neighbouring districts.

In the Battery of the Alexandra 1896

The photograph shows one of the 22 ton breech loading guns forming part of the upper central battery of the Alexandra battleship, "cast loose" for action and about to be fired. This is the scene which one would see if a hostile ship came within range of the Alexandra's guns. The Captain of the gun is shown with outstretched lanyard in hand waiting for the order to "commence firing". Behind him are men of the gun detachment; one with a sponge for wiping out the bore of the gun after the round was fired, and another, with a fresh cartridge in its leather case ready for use. The Alexandra was constructed with two central batteries one above the other; the upper mounted four 22 ton breech loading guns and the lower mounted eight 18 ton muzzle loaders, a combination of heavy armament not found on any other British battleship at the time (1896).

Original Photographic image from quality magazine published in 1896 image  size 10" x 8" approx , plus title and specifications. price £20 plus £3 post for UK £10 overseas, recorded airmail  order number ANV1263 order photograph here

 
 

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USS Dwight Eisenhower by Ivan Berryman (P)
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Lancaster CF-X (LM384) of 625 Squadron.  On the Leipzig raid on the evening of 19th/20th February 1944 approx 47 Lancasters were shot down or failed to return, that is over 300 airmen.  Lancaster CF-X (LM384) was taking part in the bombing raids that were a build up to the D-Day landings of June 1944.  Leipzig was seen as a high value target due to its oil and synthetic fuel production.  The Lancaster took off from Kelstern in Lincolnshire just before midnight.  Unfortunately LM384 did not come back as was the case with many others - the aircraft was lost and crashed just outside the tiny village of Bledeln in Germany.  The Pastor of the village, Herr Duncker, kept a diary throughout the war and has an account of the plane crash and the subsequent burial of the crew.  All of the crew died in the crash except one - bomb aimer George Paterson who was interned in Stalag 357 Kopernikus.  The rest of the crew were given a Christian burial and stayed there until the end of the war, when the war graves commission disinterred the crew and reburied them in the Hannover war cemetery.

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HMS Victory by Randall Wilson. (Y)
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Trafalgar - The Destruction of the Bucentaure by Ivan Berryman.
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HMS Dorsetshire (The End of the Bismarck) by Ivan Berryman. (AP)
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 In 1275 BC there were two superpowers in the ancient near east, in the south the Egyptians and in the north the Hittites from Anatolia in modern day central Turkey.  A clash between these two powers was inevitable.  The Egyptian Pharaoh Rameses II marched an army north into Syria to confront the Hittites and their allies under King Muwatallis.  Reaching Kadesh Rameses camped under the walls of the city with his leading division, Amun, and awaited the arrival of the rest of his army.  Poor intelligence had led Rameses to believe the Hittites were far to the north, in fact they were only 2 - 3 miles away.  Muwatallis delivered a surprise attack against Rameses camp but the Egyptians managed to hold on until re-enforcements arrived.  Despite retreating from the field after a day long battle it was Rameses who claimed a victory.  The two armies never clashed again and eventually a peace treaty was signed between the Egyptians and the Hittites.

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Halt by Lady Elizabeth Butler.
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DHM598.  Ensign of the 17th regiment of Foot, American War of Independence 1779. by Jim Lancia.

Ensign of the 17th regiment of Foot, American War of Independence 1779. by Jim Lancia.
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DB006. Michael Schumacher by Darren Baker.
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 Valentino Rossi at speed on his Repsol Honda.
Rossi at Speed by Derrick Mark.
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 England 1 Germany 0, Euro 2000.  On the 17th of June 2000 England once again faced their old nemesis Germany in a Group A qualifying match at Euro 2000.  England entered the game knowing that they had not defeated Germany in a competitive match since the famous World Cup victory in 1966.  Germany made four changes to the side that had drawn with Romania including the introduction of midfielder Sebastian Deisler, whilst England had been forced to replace Tony Adams and Steve McManaman with Martin Keown and Dennis Wise due to injury.  As expected the game started at a frenetic pace and Jancker made things difficult for England's central defenders early on with his height and strength.  England appeared to be lacking cohesion and allowed Germany to take control of the game.  Deisler brought the German crowd to their feet with a clever run down the right hand side and minutes later Hamaan had their first strike on goal which was hit directly at David Seaman.  England were looking for a flash of inspiration and it was very nearly delivered as Michael Owen managed to meet Phil Neville's cross with his head but only managed to direct the ball on to the post.  Paul Scholes in typical fashion drove a ferocious volley, which was tipped just over the bar, and suddenly it appeared that England were beginning to find some weaknesses in certain areas of the German side.  At the interval little separated the two sides however, England started the second half with a steely determination.  After just seven minutes David Beckham earned his side a free kick in a very dangerous position on the England right.  With good movement from the forwards in the German area Beckham swung a speculative cross into the six yard box.  Owen, beaten by the pace, failed to connect but man of the match Alan Shearer anticipated the kind bounce and without hesitation headed the ball back across Kahn and into the right hand side of the German goal.  The England captain had broken the deadlock and instilled in his side the belief that they could finally defeat their oldest rivals.  Germany threw everything they had at England but Keegan's team were equal to the task in every area of the pitch.  As the final whistle blew a huge roar erupted from the England supporters as Alan Shearer's goal had ended over thirty years of frustration and sealed his place in the history books as one of England's greatest ever strikers.

Perfect Finish by Peter Cornwell.
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The painting portrays the Manchester United midfielder and England Captain David Beckham celebrating after scoring from a trademark free kick.

Seven by Robert Highton. (Y)
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Everything we obtain for this site is shown on the site, we do not have any more photos, crew lists or further information on any of the ships.

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This website is owned by Cranston Fine Arts.  Torwood House, Torwoodhill Road, Rhu, Helensburgh, Scotland, G848LE

Contact: Tel: (+44) (0) 1436 820269.  Fax: (+44) (0) 1436 820473. Email:

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