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The Admiralty, originally known as the Office of the Admiralty and Marine Affairs,was the government department responsible for the command of the Royal Navy first in the Kingdom of England, later in the Kingdom of Great Britain, and from 1801 to 1964, the United Kingdom and former British Empire. Originally exercised by a single person, the Lord High Admiral (1385–1628), the Admiralty was, from the early 18th century onwards, almost invariably put "in commission" and exercised by the Lords Commissioners of the Admiralty, who sat on the Board of Admiralty.
The Royal Navy (RN) is the United Kingdom's naval warfare force. Although warships were used by the English kings from the early medieval period, the first major maritime engagements were fought in the Hundred Years War against the Kingdom of France. The modern Royal Navy traces its origins to the early 16th century; the oldest of the UK's armed services, it is known as the Senior Service.
The Kingdom of England was a sovereign state on the island of Great Britain from 927, when it emerged from various Anglo-Saxon kingdoms until 1707, when it united with Scotland to form the Kingdom of Great Britain.
The Kingdom of Great Britain, officially called simply Great Britain, was a sovereign state in western Europe from 1 May 1707 to 31 December 1800. The state came into being following the Treaty of Union in 1706, ratified by the Acts of Union 1707, which united the kingdoms of England and Scotland to form a single kingdom encompassing the whole island of Great Britain and its outlying islands, with the exception of the Isle of Man and the Channel Islands. The unitary state was governed by a single parliament and government that was based in Westminster. The former kingdoms had been in personal union since James VI of Scotland became King of England and King of Ireland in 1603 following the death of Elizabeth I, bringing about the "Union of the Crowns". After the accession of George I to the throne of Great Britain in 1714, the kingdom was in a personal union with the Electorate of Hanover.
In 1964, the functions of the Admiralty were transferred to a new Admiralty Board, which is a committee of the tri-service Defence Council of the United Kingdom and part of the Navy Departmentof the Ministry of Defence. The new Admiralty Board meets only twice a year, and the day-to-day running of the Royal Navy is controlled by a Navy Board (not to be confused with the historic Navy Board described later in this article). It is common for the various authorities now in charge of the Royal Navy to be referred to as simply 'The Admiralty'.
The Admiralty Board is the body established under the Defence Council of the United Kingdom for the administration of the Naval Service of the United Kingdom. It meets formally only once a year, and the day-to-day running of the Royal Navy is conducted by the Navy Board, which does not include any ministers.
The Defence Council of the United Kingdom is the body legally entrusted with the defence of the United Kingdom and its overseas territories and with control over the British armed forces, and is part of the Ministry of Defence.
The Navy Department was a former ministerial service department of the Ministry of Defence responsible for the control and direction of Her Majesty's Naval Service. It was established on 1 April 1964 when the Department of Admiralty was absorbed into a unified Ministry of Defence, where it became the Navy Department. Political oversight of the department originally lay with the Minister of State for the Royal Navy (1964-1967) it then passed to the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Defence for the Royal Navy (1967-1981), then later to the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for the Armed Forces (1981-1990) and finally the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Defence (1991-1997).
The title of Lord High Admiral of the United Kingdom was vested in the monarch from 1964 to 2011. The title was awarded to Philip, Duke of Edinburgh by Queen Elizabeth II on his 90th birthday.There also continues to be a Vice-Admiral of the United Kingdom and a Rear-Admiral of the United Kingdom, both of which are honorary offices.
The monarchy of the United Kingdom, commonly referred to as the British monarchy, is the constitutional monarchy of the United Kingdom, its dependencies and its overseas territories. The current monarch and head of state is Queen Elizabeth II, who ascended the throne in 1952.
The Vice-Admiral of the United Kingdom is an honorary office generally held by a senior Royal Navy admiral. He is the official deputy to the Lord High Admiral, an honorary office vested in the Sovereign from 1964 to 2011 and currently held by HRH The Duke of Edinburgh. He is appointed by the Sovereign on the nomination of the First Sea Lord.
The Rear-Admiral of the United Kingdom is a now honorary office generally held by a senior Royal Navy admiral. Despite the title, the Rear-Admiral of the United Kingdom is usually a full admiral. He is the deputy to the Vice-Admiral of the United Kingdom, who is in turn deputy to the Lord High Admiral of the United Kingdom.
The office of Admiral of England (later Lord Admiral, and later Lord High Admiral) was created around 1400; there had previously been Admirals of the northern and western seas. King Henry VIII established the Council of the Marine—later to become the Navy Board—in 1546, to oversee administrative affairs of the naval service. Operational control of the Royal Navy remained the responsibility of the Lord High Admiral, who was one of the nine Great Officers of State. This management approach would continue in force in the Royal Navy until to 1832.
The Admiral of the North also known as Admiral of the Northern Seas and Admiral of the Northern Fleet was a senior English Navy appointment. The post holder was chiefly responsible for the command of the navy's fleet that operated in the North Sea and off the English coast out of Yarmouth from 1294 to 1412.
The Admiral of the West, also known as Admiral of the Western Seas or Admiral of the Western Fleet, was formerly an English Navy appointment. The postholder was chiefly responsible for the command of the English navy's fleet based at Portsmouth, which operated in the English Channel, Irish Sea and Atlantic Ocean, from 1294 to 1412.
Henry VIII was King of England from 1509 until his death in 1547. Henry was the second Tudor monarch, succeeding his father, Henry VII. Henry is best known for his six marriages, in particular his efforts to have his first marriage, to Catherine of Aragon, annulled. His disagreement with the Pope on the question of such an annulment led Henry to initiate the English Reformation, separating the Church of England from papal authority. He appointed himself the Supreme Head of the Church of England and dissolved convents and monasteries, for which he was excommunicated. Henry is also known as "the father of the Royal Navy"; he invested heavily in the Navy, increasing its size greatly from a few to more than 50 ships.
King Charles I put the office of Lord High Admiral into commission in 1628, and control of the Royal Navy passed to a committee in the form of the Board of Admiralty. The office of Lord High Admiral passed a number of times in and out of commission until 1709, after which the office was almost permanently in commission (the last Lord High Admiral being the future King William IV in the early 19th century).
Charles I was the monarch over the three kingdoms of England, Scotland, and Ireland from 27 March 1625 until his execution in 1649.
The Board of Admiralty was established in 1628 when Charles I put the office of Lord High Admiral into commission. As that position was not always occupied, the purpose was to enable management of the day-to-day operational requirements of the Royal Navy; at that point administrative control of the navy was still the responsibility of the Navy Board, established in 1546. This system remained in place until 1832, when the Board of Admiralty became the sole authority charged with both administrative and operational control of the navy when the Navy Board was abolished. The term Admiralty has become synonymous with the command and control of the Royal Navy, partly personified in the Board of Admiralty and in the Admiralty buildings in London from where operations were in large part directed. It existed until 1964 when the office of First Lord of the Admiralty was finally abolished and the functions of the Lords Commissioners were transferred to the new Admiralty Board and the tri-service Defence Council of the United Kingdom.
William IV was King of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland and King of Hanover from 26 June 1830 until his death in 1837. The third son of George III, William succeeded his elder brother George IV, becoming the last king and penultimate monarch of Britain's House of Hanover.
In this organization a dual system operated the Lord High Admiral (from 1546) then Commissioners of the Admiralty (from 1628) exercised the function of general control (military administration) of the Navy and they were usually responsible for the conduct of any war, while the actual supply lines, support and services were managed by four principal officers, namely, the Treasurer, Comptroller, Surveyor and Clerk of the Acts, responsible individually for finance, supervision of accounts, Shipbuilding and maintenance of ships, and record of business. These principal officers came to be known as the Navy Board responsible for 'civil administration' of the navy, from 1546 to 1832.
The Treasurer of the Navy originally called Treasurer of Marine Causes also originally called Paymaster of the Navy was a civilian officer of the Royal Navy, he was one of the Principal Commissioners of the Navy Board responsible for Naval Finance from 1524 to 1832. The treasurer was based at the Navy Pay Office.
The Comptroller of the Navy originally called the Clerk Comptroller of the Navy was originally a principal member of the English Navy Royal, and later the British Royal Navy, Navy Board. From 1512 until 1832, the Comptroller was mainly responsible for all British naval spending and directing the business of the Navy Board from 1660 as its chairman. The position was abolished in 1832 when the Navy Board was merged into the Board of Admiralty. The comptroller was based at the Navy Office.
The Surveyor of the Navy also known as Department of the Surveyor of the Navy and originally known as Surveyor and Rigger of the Navy was a former principle commissioner and member of both the Navy Board from the inauguration of that body in 1546 until its abolition in 1832 and then a member Board of Admiralty from 1848-1859. In 1860 the office was renamed Controller of The Navy until 1869 when the office was merged with that of the Third Naval Lord's the post holder held overall responsibility for the design of British warships.
This structure of administering the navy lasted for 285 years, however, the supply system was often inefficient and corrupt its deficiencies were due as much to its limitations of the times they operated in. The various functions within the Admiralty were not coordinated effectively and lacked inter-dependency with each other, with the result that in 1832, Sir James Graham abolished the Navy Board and merged its functions within those of the Board of Admiralty. At the time this had distinct advantages; however, it failed to retain the principle of distinctions between the Admiralty and supply, and a lot of bureaucracy followed with the merger.
In 1860 saw big growth in the development of technical crafts, the expansion of more admiralty branches that really began with age of steam that would have an enormous influence on the navy and naval thought. Between 1860 and 1908, there was no real study of strategy and of staff work conducted within the naval service; it was practically ignored. All the Navy's talent flowed to the great technical universities. This school of thought for the next 50 years was exclusively technically based. The first serious attempt to introduce a sole management body to administer the naval service manifested itself in the creation of the Admiralty Navy War Council in 1909.It was believed by officials within the Admiralty at this time that the running of war was quite a simple matter for any flag officer who required no formal training. However, this mentality would be severely questioned with the advent of the Agadir crisis, when the Admiralty's war plans were heavily criticized.
Following this, a new advisory body called the Admiralty War Staff was then instituted in 1912, headed by the Chief of the War Staff who was responsible for administering three new sub-divisions responsible for operations, intelligence and mobilisation. The new War Staff had hardly found its feet and it continually struggled with the opposition to its existence by senior officers they were categorically opposed to a staff. The deficiencies of the system within this department of state could be seen in the conduct of the Dardanelles campaign. There were no mechanisms in place to answer the big strategic questions. A Trade Division was created in 1914. Sir John Jellicoe came to the Admiralty in 1916. He re-organized the war staff as following: Chief of War Staff, Operations, Intelligence, Signal Section, Mobilisation, Trade.
It was not until 1917 that the admiralty department was again properly reorganized and began to function as a professional military staff. In May 1917, the term "Admiralty War Staff" was renamed and that department and its functional role were superseded by a new "Admiralty Naval Staff"; in addition, the newly created office of Chief of the Naval Staff was merged in the office of the First Sea Lord. Also appointed was a new post, that of Deputy Chief of the Naval Staff, and an Assistant Chief of the Naval Staff; all were given seats on the Board of Admiralty. This for the first time gave the naval staff direct representation on the board; the presence of three senior naval senior members on the board ensured the necessary authority to carry through any operation of war. The Deputy Chief of Naval Staff would direct all operations and movements of the fleet, while the Assistant Chief of Naval Staff would be responsible for mercantile movements and anti-submarine operations.
The office of Controller would be re-established to deal with all questions relating to supply; on 6 September 1917, a Deputy First Sea Lord, was added to the Board who would administer operations abroad and deal with questions of foreign policy. In October 1917, the development of the staff was carried one step further by the creation of two sub-committees of the Board—the Operations Committee and the Maintenance Committee. The First Lord of the Admiralty was chairman of both committees, and the Operations Committee consisted of the First Sea Lord and Chief of Naval Staff, the Deputy First Sea Lord, Assistant Chief of Naval Staff, and Fifth Sea Lord. The Maintenance Committee consisted of the Deputy First Sea Lord (representing the operations committee), Second Sea Lord (personnel), Third Sea Lord (materiel), Fourth Sea Lord (transport and stores), Civil Lord, Controller and Financial Secretary.
Full operational control of the Royal Navy was finally handed over to the Chief of Naval Staff (CNS) by an order in Council, effective October 1917, under which he became responsible for the issuing of orders affecting all war operations directly to the fleet. It also empowered the CNS to issue orders in their own name, as opposed to them previously being issued by the Permanent Secretary of the Admiralty in the name of the Board. In 1964, the Admiralty—along with the War Office and the Air Ministry—were abolished as separate departments of state, and placed under one single new Ministry of Defence. Within the expanded Ministry of Defence are the new Admiralty Board which has a separate Navy Board responsible for the day-to-day running of the Royal Navy, the Army Board and the Air Force Board, each headed by the Secretary of State for Defence. This structure remained in place until the department was abolished in 1964; the operational control and this system still remains in place with the Royal Navy today. For the organisational structure of the admiralty department and how it developed through the centuries see the following articles below.
In the 20th century the structure of the Admiralty Headquarters was predominantly organized into four parts:
Board of Admiralty
When the office of Lord High Admiral was in commission, as it was for most of the 18th, 19th and 20th centuries, until it reverted to the Crown, it was exercised by a Board of Admiralty, officially known as the Commissioners for Exercising the Office of Lord High Admiral of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, &c. (alternatively of England, Great Britain or the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland depending on the period). The Board of Admiralty consisted of a number of Lords Commissioners of the Admiralty. The Lords Commissioners were always a mixture of admirals, known as Naval Lords or Sea Lords and Civil Lords, normally politicians. The quorum of the Board was two commissioners and a secretary. The president of the Board was known as the First Lord of the Admiralty, who was a member of the Cabinet. After 1806, the First Lord of the Admiralty was always a civilian, while the professional head of the navy came to be (and is still today) known as the First Sea Lord.
Lords Commissioners of the Admiralty (1628–1964)
The Lords Commissioners of the Admiralty were the members of The Board of Admiralty, which exercised the office of Lord High Admiral when it was not vested in a single person. The commissioners were a mixture of politicians without naval experience and professional naval officers, the proportion of naval officers generally increasing over time.
First Lord of the Admiralty
The First Lord of the Admiralty or formally the Office of the First Lord of the Admiralty was the British government's senior civilian adviser on all naval affairs and the minister responsible for the direction and control of the Admiralty and Marine Affairs Office later the Department of Admiralty.(+) His office was supported by the Naval Secretariat.
First Sea Lord and Chief of Naval Staff
The First Sea Lord and Chief of Naval Staff was the Chief Naval Adviser on the Board of Admiralty to the First Lord and superintended the offices of the sea lords and the admiralty naval staff.
The Navy Board was an independent board from 1546 until 1628 when it became subordinate to, yet autonomous of the Board of Admiralty until 1832. Its principal commissioners of the Navy advised the board in relation to civil administration of the naval affairs. The Navy Board was based at the Navy Office.
Board of Admiralty civilian members responsible other important civil functions
Admiralty Naval Staff
It evolved from *Admiralty Navy War Council, (1909–1912) which in turn became the Admiralty War Staff, (1912–1917) before finally becoming the Admiralty Naval Staff in 1917. It was the former senior command, operational planning, policy and strategy department within the British Admiralty. It was established in 1917 and existed until 1964 when the department of the Admiralty was abolished, and the staff departments function continued within the Navy Department of the Ministry of Defence until 1971 when its functions became part of the new Naval Staff, Navy Department of the Ministry of Defence.
Offices of the Naval Staff
The Admiralty Departments were distinct and component parts of the Department of Admiralty that were superintended by the various offices of the Sea Lords responsible for them; they were primarily administrative, research, scientific and logistical support organisations. The departments role was to provide the men, ships, aircraft and supplies to carry out the approved policy of the Board of Admiralty and conveyed to them during 20th century by the Admiralty Naval Staff.
Offices of the Sea Lords
Department of the Permanent Secretary
The Secretary's Department consisted of members of the civil service it was directed and controlled by a senior civil servant Permanent Secretary to the Board of Admiralty he was not a Lord Commissioner of the Admiralty, he functioned as a member of the board, and attended all of its meetings.
The Admiralty complex lies between Whitehall, Horse Guards Parade and The Mall and includes five inter-connected buildings. Since the Admiralty no longer exists as a department, these buildings are now used by separate government departments:
The oldest building was long known simply as The Admiralty; it is now known officially as the Ripley Building, a three-storey U-shaped brick building designed by Thomas Ripley and completed in 1726. Alexander Pope implied the architecture is rather dull, lacking either the vigour of the baroque style, fading from fashion at the time, or the austere grandeur of the Palladian style just coming into vogue. It is mainly notable for being perhaps the first purpose-built office building in Great Britain. It contained the Admiralty board room, which is still used by the Admiralty, other state rooms, offices and apartments for the Lords of the Admiralty. Robert Adam designed the screen, which was added to the entrance front in 1788. The Ripley Building is currently occupied by the Department for International Development.
Admiralty House is a moderately proportioned mansion to the south of the Ripley Building, built in the late 18th century as the residence of the First Lord of the Admiralty from 1788. It served that purpose until 1964. Winston Churchill was one of its occupants in 1911–1915 and 1939–1940. It lacks its own entrance from Whitehall and is entered through the Ripley Courtyard or Ripley Building. It is a three-storey building in yellow brick with neoclassical interiors. Its rear facade faces directly onto Horse Guards Parade. The architect was Samuel Pepys Cockerell. The ground floor comprises meeting rooms for the Cabinet Office and the upper floors are three ministerial residences.
This is the largest of the Admiralty Buildings. It was begun in the late 19th century and redesigned while the construction was in progress to accommodate the extra offices needed by the naval arms race with the German Empire. It is a red brick building with white stone, detailing in the Queen Anne style with French influences. It has been used by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office from the 1960s to 2016. The Department for Education planned to move into the building in September 2017 following the Foreign and Commonwealth Office's decision to leave the building and consolidate its London staff into one building on King Charles Street. Change of contractor (BAM was replaced by Willmott Dixon) delayed consolidation of Department for Education to the autumn 2018.
Admiralty Arch is linked to the Old Admiralty Building by a bridge and is part of the ceremonial route from Trafalgar Square to Buckingham Palace.
This is a squat, windowless World War II fortress north west of Horse Guards Parade, now covered in ivy. See Military citadels under London for further details.
In some cases, the term admiralty is used in a wider sense, as meaning sea power or rule over the seas, rather than in strict reference to the institution exercising such power. For example, the well-known lines from Kipling's Song of the Dead:
If blood be the price of admiralty,
Lord God, we ha' paid in full!
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The First Sea Lord and Chief of Naval Staff (1SL/CNS) is the professional head of the United Kingdom's Royal Navy and the whole Naval Service. Originally the title was the Senior Naval Lord to the Board of Admiralty when the post was created in 1689. The office holder was then re-styled First Naval Lord from 1771. The concept of a professional "First Naval Lord" was introduced in 1805 and the title of the First Naval Lord was changed to "First Sea Lord" on the appointment of Sir Jackie Fisher in 1904. From 1923 onward, the First Sea Lord was a member of the Chiefs of Staff Committee; he now sits on the Defence Council and the Admiralty Board.
The Second Sea Lord (2SL) is one of the most senior admirals of the British Royal Navy, responsible for personnel and naval shore establishments. Originally titled Second Naval Lord in 1830, the post was restyled Second Sea Lord in 1904. He is based at Navy Command, Headquarters.
The post of Controller of the Navy was originally created in 1859 when the Surveyor of the Navy's title changed to Controller of the Navy. In 1869 the controllers office was abolished and his duties were assumed by that of the Third Naval Lord who's title then changed to Third Naval Lord and Controller of the Navy. In 1904 his title was changed again to Third Sea Lord and Controller of the Navy. In 1965 the office of the Third Sea Lord was abolished. The post holder is responsible for procurement and matériel in the British Royal Navy.
The Navy Board and formerly known as the Council of the Marine or Council of the Marine Causes was the commission with responsibility for day-to-day civil administration of the Royal Navy between 1546 and 1832. The board was headquartered within the Navy Office.
The Fourth Sea Lord and Chief of Naval Supplies originally known as the Fourth Naval Lord was formerly one of the Naval Lords and members of the Board of Admiralty which controlled the Royal Navy of the United Kingdom the post is currently known as Chief of Materiel (Fleet). As of 2017, it is also known as Chief of Fleet Support.
The Fifth Sea Lord was formerly one of the Naval Lords and members of the Board of Admiralty that controlled the Royal Navy. The post's incumbent had responsibility for naval aviation.
The office of Permanent Secretary to the Admiralty was the senior civil servant at the Admiralty, of Great Britain the department of state responsible for the administration of the Royal Navy. He was head of the Admiralty Secretariat later known as the Department of the Permanent Secretary. Although he was not a Lord Commissioner of the Admiralty, he was as a member of the Board, and did attend all meetings the post existed from 1702 to 1964.
The First Lord of the Admiralty, or formally the Office of the First Lord of the Admiralty, was the political head of the Royal Navy who was the government's senior adviser on all naval affairs and responsible for the direction and control of Admiralty Department as well as general administration of the Naval Service of the United Kingdom, that encompassed the Royal Navy, the Royal Marines and other services. It was one of the earliest known permanent government posts. Apart from being the political head of the Royal Navy the post holder simultaneously held the title of the President of the Board of Commissioners for Exercising the Office of Lord High Admiral. The office of First Lord of the Admiralty existed from 1628 until it was abolished when the Admiralty, Air Ministry, Ministry of Defence and War Office were all merged to form the new Ministry of Defence in 1964.
Navy Command is the current headquarters body of the British Royal Navy, and its major organisational grouping. It is a hybrid, neither a command, nor simply an installation. Royal Navy official writings describe Navy Command Headquarters both as a physical site, on Whale Island, a collective formed of the most senior RN officers, and as a budgetary grouping.
The Assistant Chief of the Naval Staff (A.C.N.S.) is a senior appointment in the Royal Navy usually a two-star rank and has a NATO ranking code of OF-7.
The Deputy Chief of the Naval Staff (D.C.N.S.) is a senior appointment in the Royal Navy currently held by the Second Sea Lord, usually a three-star rank and had a NATO ranking code of OF-8 but has previously been held by an acting two-star ranked officer and a four-star ranked officer.
The Admiralty and Marine Affairs Office (1546-1707) originally known as the Admiralty Office (1414-1546) was a government office of the Kingdom of England and the English Navy's central command. It was first established in 1414 when the remaining regional admiralties, the Northern and Western were abolished and their functions were unified under a single centralized command. It was administered by the Office of the High Admiral of England, Ireland and Aquitaine later called the Lord Admiral of England. During the sixteenth century it oversaw the creation of standing "Navy Royal", with its own secretariat, dockyards and a permanent core of purpose-built warships, originated in the early 16th century during the reign of Henry VIII. Under Elizabeth I England became involved in a war with Spain, which saw privately owned ships combining with the Royal Navy in highly profitable raids against Spanish commerce and colonies. In 1588, Philip II of Spain sent the Spanish Armada against England to end English support for Dutch rebels, to stop English corsair activity and to depose the Protestant Elizabeth I and restore Catholicism to England. The Spaniards sailed from Lisbon, planning to escort an invasion force from the Spanish Netherlands but the scheme failed due to poor planning, English harrying, blocking action by the Dutch, and severe storms. A Counter Armada, known as the English Armada, was dispatched to the Iberian coast in 1589, but failed to drive home the advantage England had won upon the dispersal of the Spanish Armada in the previous year. The Admiralty of England existed until 1707 when Kingdom of England and the Kingdom of Scotland united to form the single Kingdom of Great Britain when it then became known as the Admiralty Department or Admiralty of Great Britain.
During the early 17th century, England's relative naval power deteriorated, In the course of the rest of the 17th century, The office of the Admiralty and Marine Affairs steered the Navy's transition from a semi-amateur Navy Royal fighting in conjunction with private vessels into a fully professional institution, a Royal Navy. Its financial provisions were gradually regularised, it came to rely on dedicated warships only, and it developed a professional officer corps with a defined career structure, superseding an earlier mix of sailors and socially prominent former soldiers.
The Glorious Revolution of 1688 rearranged the political map of Europe, and led to a series of wars with France that lasted well over a century. This was the classic age of sail; while the ships themselves evolved in only minor ways, technique and tactics were honed to a high degree, and the battles of the Napoleonic Wars entailed feats that would have been impossible for the fleets of the 17th century. Because of parliamentary opposition, James II fled the country. The landing of William III and the Glorious Revolution itself was a gigantic effort involving 100 warships and 400 transports carrying 11,000 infantry and 4,000 horses. It was not opposed by the English or Scottish fleets.
The Admiralty War Staff was the former senior naval staff operational planning organisation within the British Admiralty during World War I. It was instituted on 8 January 1912 and was in effect a war council whose head reported directly to the First Sea Lord. It existed until 1917. After the war ended, it was replaced by the Admiralty Naval Staff department.
The Admiralty Naval Staff was the former senior command, operational planning, policy and strategy department within the British Admiralty. It was established in 1917 and existed until 1964 when the department of the Admiralty was abolished. It was replaced Ministry of Defence as part of the Ministry of Defence Navy Department.
The Department of the Permanent Secretary also formally known as Department of the Permanent Secretary to the Admiralty or Department of the Secretary was the Civil Service department responsible for the control, direction and guidance of all administrative functions of the British Admiralty from 1702 to 1964, it was headed by the Permanent Secretary to the Admiralty.
The Civil Lord of the Admiralty formally known as the Office of the Civil Lord of Admiralty also referred to as the Department of the Civil Lord of the Admiralty was a member of the Board of Admiralty who was responsible for managing the Royal Navy's supporting civilian staff, the works and buildings departments and naval lands from 1830 to 1964.
The Mercantile Movements Division originally known as the Convoy Section was a former Directorate of the British Admiralty, Naval Staff that coordinated, organised and plotted all Merchant Navy convoys, routing and schedules from 1917 until 1920.