HMS Conway - Click here to return to the menu HMS Conway 1859 - 1974

Alfie Windsor 1998
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Staff - Captain Superintendents


There were nine Captain Superintendents and one acting Captain Superintendent between 1859 and 1968. From 1968 when Cheshire County Council took control the post of Captain Superintendent lapsed and the Headmaster took charge.

May 1859 - Apr 1860

Captain Charles Powell He resigned after a number of tragic losses in his family

 

Apr 1860 - Feb 1862

Captain Alfred Royer RN

 

Feb 1862 - 1871

Captain Richard Mowll RN (Old Mobby) who had previously been Chief Officer. His family tree can be found here. Background here

 

1871 - 30 Sep 1881

Captain Edward Franklin RN. Promoted Rear Admiral on retirement


Edward Franklin was born in November 1798 and entered the Navy in March 1810. In the Norge he was present at the attack on New Orleans and at the capture of Fort Bowyer. He was promoted Lieutenant in September 1825 after serving in the West Indies and a period of convalescence following fever and rheumatism brought on by eleven continuous years of service in the tropics. In November 1830 he was appointed to the Coast Blockade and while serving with the Coast Guard received a silver medal and letter of thanks for his intrepid conduct in swimming off, in a gale, with a rope (all boats being stoved) and saving the lives of eight men belonging to the brig Friends, when on shore near Brighton. From a severe cold caught in capturing a smuggler during another gale he lost the sight of one eye, owing to which, when combined with acute rheumatism, he was obliged to relinquish his appointment in the Coast Guard in 1839. He was promoted Commander in November 1846 and was in charge of a Division of Transports in the Black Sea in May 1854. The Gold Medal of the Shipwrecked Fishermen and Mariners’ Society was awarded to him for having risked his life in the preservation of the crew of French and English Transports wrecked in the devastating Black Sea Gale of November 11th – 14th 1854 – an event which shortly followed the Battle of Inkerman, and which had as much impact on the Allied forces as a military defeat. The storm was worst at the Balaclava anchorage where Franklin was based, on a rocky, cliff-lined coast, where ships were dragging anchors, cables were snapping and crews were trying to chop down masts to stop their ships from foundering or being driven ashore to provide easy targets for the Russians. The losses of life (French, British and Turkish) were about 1,000 in all, around a third of whom were British. Some 50 vessels were wrecked and destroyed, the Marquis and the Mary Anne being lost with all hands. Only 6 of the 150 crew aboard the new screw-transport vessel Prince were saved; she had just landed the 46th (South Devonshire) Regiment, but not the vital winter clothing or medical supplies she was carrying beneath the ammunition. On the morning of November 15th Franklin set off early to obtain permission from the flagship to organise a full-scale rescue programme. Contemporary accounts of the storm suggest that he took the initiative at the earliest possible moment under the appalling circumstances, and many lives were saved amongst the floating wreckage strewn along the coast. Franklin became a Captain in July, 1857 and served in this capacity until February 1868. Three years later, in 1871, he was appointed Captain Superintendant at H.M.S. Conway, a position he held until September 1881, being promoted to Rear Admiral on his retirement.


His four medals were:

Crimea 1854, 1 clasp Sebastopol, engraved in plain capitals (Commander Edward Franklin. R.N)

Royal National Lifeboat Institution, silver medal, George IV obverse (Lieut. Edwd. Franklin. R.N. Voted 12 Decr. 1838.)

Shipwrecked Fishermen and Mariners Royal Benevolent Society, gold medal, with straight suspension bar (Commander Edward Franklin, R.N., 6th July, 1855); and Turkish Crimea, Sardinian issue, engraved in plain capitals (Commander Edward Franklin. R.N), R.N.L.I. medal with a couple of rim nicks, otherwise generally extremely fine and silver medals toned, mounted for wearing (4)

R.N.L.I medal: FRANKLIN, Edward, Lieutenant, R.N.H.M. Coastguard, Hove, 29 October 1838: “During stormy weather, the coal-laden brig Friends was wrecked near Hove, Sussex, her crew taking to the rigging. Lieutenant Franklin and two men waded into the sea, threw ropes on board and took off the Master and seven men.”

1 Oct 1881 - 1903

Lt. Archibald Miller RN FRGS FRAS (Lippy). Died in his cabin. Obituary here and here.

He is buried in Toxteth cemetery, Liverpool, England. The stone is engraved: 'In loving memory of ARCHIBALD T. MILLER, R.N., for 22 years Commander of H.M.S. School Ship 'Conway', died 7th May 1903, aged 64 years'

 

1903 - 1927

Captain H Broadbent RNR (Lobster Chops) (Conway 1880-81). First ex Conway to return as Captain.He was the 2,900th cadet.

 

1927 - 14 June 1934

Commander F A Richardson DSC RN (Conway 1900-02).

 

14 June - 24 July 1934

 

During this period Commander Montague Douglas RD RNR (Monty) - the Conway's Chief Officer) was appointed Acting Captain Superintendent. Obituary 1946
24 July 1934 - 26 July 1949

Captain T M Goddard RD RNR (Conway 1905-07). Captain of South Africa Training Ship General Botha in 1921.

16-29 Mar 1939: Captain Mansfield assumed temporary command while Captain Goddard was visiting Gordonstoun School

dates not known: Captain Digby Rhys Jones OBE (1920-22) His short obituary in the Club Newsletter said he was Chief Officer twice and acted as Captain Superintendent, presumably whilst Captain Goddard was away for some reason.

 

26 July 1949 - July 1968

Capt Eric Hewitt RD RNR (Conway 1919-21)

Captain Hewitt was appointed as "Staff Captain" and Captain Superintendent designate in March 1948.

The author had the honour to serve as his last Chief Cadet Captain)

 

An Honours Boards made from the Ship's timbers listing the 9 Captains hangs in the Conway Chapel at Birkenhead Priory, paid for from donations to the Captain Hewitt Memorial Fund.


 
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