Historical Lectures this autumn at HMS Caroline

This autumn HMS Caroline is set to host a variety of historical lectures in its new dockside visitor centre.

The lectures will be held throughout October and November and will discuss a broad range of topics about HMS Caroline and the Royal Navy, detailing some key experiences of those who served during both World Wars.

A.P Smith was the Captain’s Steward on HMS Caroline during The First World War and the historic Battle of Jutland (to view our twitter thread describing the 36 hour long Battle of Jutland through the eyes of HMS Caroline click here).

Smith’s diaries tell of the sights witnessed during the Battle of Jutland as well as details of a Zeppelin Raid in Newcastle in 1915 and torpedo practice at Scapa Flow.

The diaries were kindly donated to HMS Caroline in March this year by A.P Smith’s granddaughter Jan Thornton, on the behalf of her mother Olive Thornton and aunt José Loosemore.  

At the time, Jan commented that “The restoration of HMS Caroline and the important re-telling of the Battle of Jutland as one of the most historic sea fights of WW1 has been meticulously curated by the National Museum of the Royal Navy. I am delighted to donate my grandfather’s personal artefacts from his HMS Caroline days, and particularly his poignant words from his own diary.”

Other lectures will not only focus on HMS Caroline but the Royal Navy. On 11th October, John Tracey from the National Maritime Museum of Ireland will discuss the intrinsic relationship and links between the Royal Navy and the Irish Naval Service.

This will be followed on 15th November by NMRN’s Nick Hewitt as he discusses how the Grand Fleet, probably the most powerful assembly of manpower and technology in the world at the time, continued to contribute to the war effort in the final year of the Great War.

The final lecture on Thursday 22nd November will turn its attention back to HMS Caroline. This talk will consider the experiences of the Royal Naval Reserves during the Second World War. A key story to note will be that of W.L. Stephens who took part in the assault of Saint Nazaire and was taken prisoner-of-war in 1942.

Jamie Wilson, HMS Caroline’s General Manager says ‘We are delighted to be hosting such an exciting range of lectures in our new dockside visitor centre. These lectures will shine a light on a fascinating period of naval and maritime history.”

Each individual lecture costs £5 per adult/£3 per concession. Guests can also purchase a lecture bundle where they will receive all four lectures for the price of three.

HMS Hermes returning from the Falklands