|Commander-in-Chief, The Nore|
|Type||Command (military formation)|
The Commander-in-Chief, The Nore, was an operational commander of the Royal Navy. His subordinate units, establishments, and staff were sometimes informally known as the Nore Station or Nore Command. The Nore is a sandbank at the mouth of the Thames Estuary and River Medway. 
The origins of the Commander-in-Chief's post can be traced to the first area naval commander, then known as the Commander-in-Chief, Thames from 1695 to 1696. 
From 1698 to 1699 the appointment was known as Commander-in-Chief, Medway. In 1707 the post holder was known as Commander-in-Chief, Thames and Medway and between 1711 and 1745 the office was known as the Commander-in-Chief, Thames, Medway and Nore. In 1745 the post for the first time was simply called the Commander-in-Chief, Nore established at Chatham  and became responsible for sub-commands at Chatham, London less the Admiralty, Sheerness, Harwich and Humber.  A. Cecil Hampshire writes that in 1752 Isaac Townsend, Admiral of the Blue, was appointed as "Commander-in-Chief of HM Ships and Naval Vessels in the Rivers Thames and Medway and at the Buoy of the Nore." 
From 1827 the Commander-in-Chief was accommodated in Admiralty House, Sheerness, built as part of the renewal of Sheerness Dockyard. From 1834 to 1899 his appointment was known as the Commander-in-Chief, Sheerness. 
After the dissolution of the Home Fleet in 1905, remaining ships at a lesser state of readiness were split between three reserve divisions: Nore Division plus the Devonport Division and the Portsmouth Division.  In 1909 the division was brought out of reserve status, and became operational as part of the 3rd and 4th Division of the Home Fleet. 
In 1907 the Commander-in-Chief moved to a new Admiralty House alongside the naval barracks (HMS Pembroke) in Chatham, the Sheerness house being given over to the Commander-in-Chief, Home Fleet.  The Dover Patrol, Harwich Force, and Humber Force operated in the Channel during the First World War, but were responsible to the Admiralty in London; the Nore was effectively a provider of shore support rather than a command with operational responsibilities. 
In 1938 an underground Area Combined Headquarters was built close to Admiralty House to accommodate the Commander-in-Chief together with the Air Officer Commanding No. 16 Group RAF, Coastal Command, and their respective staffs;  similar headquarters were built close to the other Royal Dockyards. During the Second World War, the Nore assumed great importance: it was used to guard the east coast convoys supplying the ports of North Eastern England. 
During the Second World War, the Commander-in-Chief at the Nore, at Chatham, included eight sub commands, each of which usually commanded by a Flag Officer either a Rear Admiral or Vice Admiral. They included Brightlingsea station, Harwich, Humber, London (not including the Admiralty), Lowestoft, Sheerness, Southend and Yarmouth.  These sub-commands were then sub-divided into Base areas usually commanded by a Naval Officer in Charge (NOIC) or a Residential Naval Officer (RNO) these included HM Naval Bases at Boston, Burnham-on-Crouch, Felixstowe, Gravesend, Grimsby, Immingham, and Queensborough. 
With the onset of the Cold War, the Nore diminished in importance as the navy decreased in size. Between 1952 and 1961 the Commander-in-Chief, The Nore was double-hatted as Commander, Nore Sub-Area, of NATO's Allied Command Channel. 
Cecil Hampshire writes that the appointment of Commander-in-Chief finally lapsed as part of the "Way Ahead" economies. The closing ceremony took place on 24 March 1961, when the station's Queen's Colour was formally laid up in the presence of members of the Admiralty Board, several former Commanders-in-Chief, other civilian and military figures, "..and the Commander-in-Chief of the Netherlands Home Station flying his flag in the new Dutch destroyer Limburg who had been invited to attend."  The Commander-in-Chief's appointment was finally discontinued on 31 March 1961.  Cecil Hampshire writes that from 1 April 1961, the area was divided between the Commander-in-Chief Portsmouth and the Flag Officer Scotland and Northern Ireland, the demarcation line being "roughly at The Wash." For purposes of administration from that date onward, the Admiral Superintendent Chatham also took the title of Flag Officer Medway. 
The underground headquarters went on to serve as HMS Wildfire, a Royal Naval Reserve training and communications centre, from 1964 to 1994. 
Chatham Dockyard was a Dockyard located on the River Medway in Kent. Established in Chatham in the mid-16th century, the dockyard subsequently expanded into neighbouring Gillingham. At its most extensive, in the early 20th century, two-thirds of the dockyard lay in Gillingham, one-third in Chatham. The senior officer was a Captain-Superintendent, Chatham Dockyard or the Admiral-superintendent Chatham
In the early 20th century the Rear Admiral Commanding, Chatham Sheerness Reserve Division, was established and became responsible eventually to the Commander-in-Chief, Home Fleet(s). Post holders included Rear Admirals Walter Hodgson Bevan Graham, 3 January 1905 – 3 January 1906; Charles H. Adair 3 January 1906 – 3 January 1907; and Frank Finnis 3 January 1907 – 4 January 1909. 
The Royal Naval Barracks, Chatham were purpose-built to provide accommodation and training facilities for the men of the reserve fleet who were waiting to be appointed to ships. Designed by Colonel Henry Pilkington, construction of the barracks began in 1897 and completed in December 1902. 
Sheerness Dockyard was a Royal Navy Dockyard located on the Sheerness peninsula, at the mouth of the River Medway in Kent. It was opened in the 1660s and closed in 1960.
It was directed by the Admiral-Superintendent, Sheerness.
At various times during the First and Second World Wars, up to nine sub-areas were established. These were usually administered by either a retired vice or rear admiral, or an active captain, who were appointed as Senior Naval Officers or Flag Officers. 
|Sub-Area||Flag Ship or Ships borne in||Flag Officers/Officers commanding||Dates||Ref|
|Brightlingsea||HMS Wallaroo; HMS City of Perth then HMS Nemo||Senior Naval officer, Brighlingsea||1914–1945||  |
|Dover||HMS Nemo||Naval Officer-in-Charge, Dover & CO HMS Lynx||1945–1946|||
|Harwich||HMS Badger||Flag Officer-in-Charge, Harwich||1914–1944|
|Humber||HMS Beaver||Flag Officer-in-Charge, Humber||1939–1946|||
|London||HMS Yeoman||Flag Officer-in-Charge, London||1938–1946||Rear Admiral Edward Courtney Boyle  1939–42|
Admiral Martin Dunbar-Nasmith 1942–46
|Lowestoft||HMS Minos||Naval Officer-in-Charge, Lowestoft||1914–1918,  1942–1946|
|Southend||HMS Leigh||Commander-in-Charge, Southend||1914–1918,  1942–1946|
|Yarmouth||HMS Watchful||Flag Officer-in-Charge, Yarmouth||1942–1945|||
|HM Naval Base, Immingham||Immingham||1914–1918||chain of command was to the SNO/FO, Humber Station|
|RNTE Shotley||Chatham||1914–1918||Shotley Training Establishment|
Various units that served in this command included:   
|Naval Units||Based at||Date||Notes|
|Reserve Fleet||Chatham||1900–1905||4 protected cruisers|
|Reserve Fleet||Chatham||1906–-1914||13 cruisers from the Aeolus, Arrogant, Astraea, Diadem, Eclipse, Edgar classes.|
|Reserve Fleet||Chatham||1939||inc: 6 cruisers, 15 destroyers, and 5 minesweepers|
|3rd Battle Squadron||Chatham||May 1916 – April 1918||ex Grand Fleet|
|2nd Cruiser Squadron||Chatham||1939–1940|
|5th Cruiser Squadron||Chatham||1908–1909|
|7th Cruiser Squadron||Chatham||1912|
|HMS Curacoa (D41)||Chatham||1939||C-class cruiser (light)|
|HMS London (69)||Chatham||1939||County-class cruiser|
|1st Destroyer Flotilla||Harwich||December 1939 – June 1940|
|4th Destroyer Flotilla||Humber||August – December 1916|
|5th Destroyer Flotilla||Chatham||1939–1940|
|7th Destroyer Flotilla||Humber/Chatham||August 1914 – November 1918, 1939–1940||WWI part of AOPs|
|8th Destroyer Flotilla||Chatham||1911–1914||1 cruiser leader, 2 scout cruisers and 24 torpedo boat destroyers|
|9th Destroyer Flotilla||Nore||1911–1914||1 cruiser leader, 2 scout cruisers and 27 destroyers|
|16th Destroyer Flotilla||Harwich||June 1940 – May 1945|
|18th Destroyer Flotilla||Harwich||June–December, 1940||disbanded|
|19th Destroyer Flotilla||Chatham||September–October, 1939||transferred to Dover Command|
|20th Destroyer Flotilla||Immingham||1914–1918, 1941|
|21st Destroyer Flotilla||Sheerness||July 1940 – May 1945||formed the southern force for the escort of east coast convoys|
|22nd Destroyer Flotilla||Harwich||November–December, 1939||inc: renamed 1st Destroyer Flotilla|
|Nore Flotilla||Harwich||1895–1909||43 torpedo boat destroyers|
|Nore Local Flotilla||Harwich||1912–1914||was a Destroyer Flotilla|
|20th Minelaying Destroyer Flotilla||Harwich||1939–1940|
|4th Minesweeper Flotilla||Harwich||September 1939 – July 1942|
|5th Minesweeper Flotilla||Harwich||September 1939 – April 1941||absorbed into 4MSF|
|6th Minesweeper Flotilla||Harwich||May–September 1940|
|7th Minesweeper Flotilla||Harwich||March 1944 – January 1945|
|8th Minesweeper Flotilla||Chatham||1939|
|10th Minesweeper Flotilla||Chatham||April 1945|
|11th Minesweeper Flotilla||Chatham||April 1945|
|15th Minesweeper Flotilla||Chatham||February 1944|
|18th Minesweeper Flotilla||Chatham||May 1943|
|40th Minesweeper Flotilla||Harwich||1945|
|44nd Minesweeper Flotilla||Harwich||August 1944|
|117 Minesweeper Flotilla||Sheerness||1944|
|133 Minesweeper Flotilla||Sheerness||1944|
|140 Minesweeper Flotilla||Sheerness & Harwich||1944||divided between two naval bases|
|163 Minesweeper Flotilla||Lowestoft||1944|
|202 Minesweeper Flotilla||Lowestoft||1944|
|203 Minesweeper Flotilla||Harwich||1944|
|5th Motor Torpedo Boat Flotilla||Immingham||1939–1941|
|11th Motor Torpedo Boat Flotilla||Felixstowe||1944|
|21st Motor Torpedo Boat Flotilla||Felixstowe||1944|
|22nd Motor Torpedo Boat Flotilla||Felixstowe||1944|
|29th Motor Torpedo Boat Flotilla||Felixstowe||1939|
|2nd Submarine Flotilla||Immingham||August 1916 – February 1917||coastal defence C Class|
|3rd Submarine Flotilla||Immingham/Humber/Harwich||September 1916 – 1918, October 1939 – May 1940|
|4th Submarine Flotilla||Sherness||August 1916 – September 1917||Disbanded|
|5th Submarine Flotilla||Sherness||August 1914 – August 1916||renamed 4th Submarine Flotilla|
|6th Submarine Flotilla||Humber||August 1914 – August 1916|
Commanders-in-Chief have included:   
= died in post
Post holders included: 
Post holders included: 
Post holders included: 
Post holders supporting the senior naval officer at the Nore included: 
Post holders supporting the CINC, Nore included: 
At the request of the Naval Officer in Charge, Immingham, parties were landed to assist in the work of preparing demolitions at this port.
Admiral Sir Geoffrey Oliver, Commander, Nore Sub-Area
Commander-in-Chief, Thames and Medway.
Commander-in-Chief, Medway and Nore Edward Vernon.
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Admiral Sir William King-Hall, was a Royal Navy officer who served as Commander-in-Chief, The Nore from 1877 to 1879.
Rear-Admiral Christopher Hill was a Royal Navy officer who served as Commander-in-Chief, River Medway and the Nore. Having joined the Royal Navy in 1731, Hill served off Ireland, Portugal, and in the Mediterranean Sea before being promoted to commander in 1746. After several commands he was then promoted to post-captain in 1747. While commanding HMS Dover he then captured the French East Indiaman Pondichéry during the Seven Years' War. Hill was on half pay between 1760 and 1769, then being given command of HMS Augusta and serving as Commander-in-Chief, River Medway and the Nore for the following year. His last command was HMS Barfleur towards the end of the year. A well thought of officer, Hill was promoted to rear-admiral in January 1778 but was killed in a fall from his horse six months later.
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