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Commander-in-Chief, Plymouth

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Commander-in-Chief, Plymouth
HMS Impregnable c 1900.jpg
HMS Impregnable, flagship of the Commander-in-Chief, Plymouth, circa 1900
Country United Kingdom
Naval Ensign of the United Kingdom.svg
Royal Navy
Garrison/HQMount Wise, Plymouth

The Commander-in-Chief, Plymouth was a senior commander of the Royal Navy for hundreds of years. Plymouth Command was a name given to the units, establishments, and staff operating under the admiral's command. Prior to 1914 the holder of the office was often referred to as Commander-in-Chief, Devonport. The Commanders-in-Chief were based in what is now Hamoaze House, Devonport, Plymouth from 1809 to 1934 and then at Admiralty House, Mount Wise, Devonport from 1934 until 1996.[1]


Hamoaze House, formerly Admiralty House, on Mount Wise (centre)
Hamoaze House, formerly Admiralty House, on Mount Wise (centre)

The post dates back to around 1743.[2] It extended along the South Coast from Exmouth in East Devon to Penzance in Cornwall.[3] In 1941, during World War II, elements of Plymouth Command were transferred to Western Approaches Command which was established at Derby House in Liverpool.[4] Meanwhile, Plymouth Command occupied a new combined Headquarters, known as the Maritime Headquarters, at Mount Wise.[5] The post of Commander-in-Chief, Plymouth was merged with that of Commander-in-Chief, Portsmouth in 1969 to form Naval Home Command.[6] Between 1952 and 1969 the Commander-in-Chief, Plymouth double-hatted as Plymouth Sub-Area Channel Command (PLYMCHAN) commander in NATO's Allied Command Channel, and from 1969 to 1994 he double-hatted as Naval Base Commander Devonport, NATO Commander Central Sub-Area (CENTLANT) and Commander Plymouth Sub-Area Channel (PLYMCHAN).

After 1969, Admiralty House and the Maritime Headquarters became the home of the Flag Officer, Plymouth until that post was also disbanded in 1996. At around the same time the nearby RN Dockyard and barracks were reconstituted as HM Naval Base Devonport and placed under the command of a Commodore.[5]

Commanders-in-Chief and Flag Officers

Commanders-in-Chief and Flag Officers have included:[7][8][9]

Commander-in-Chief, Plymouth

Commander-in-Chief, Devonport

Commander-in-Chief, Plymouth

Flag Officer, Plymouth

Post 1969 period

On 30 December 1970, Vice-Admiral J R McKaig CBE was appointed as Port Admiral, Her Majesty's Naval Base, Devonport, and Flag Officer, Plymouth. On 5 September 1971, all Flag Officers of the Royal Navy holding positions of Admiral Superintendents at Royal Dockyards were restyled as Port Admirals.[10]

Flag Officer Plymouth and Port Admiral, Devonport


This article includes some minor copied content from this article HMNB Devonport section Administration.


  1. ^ "Mount Wise, Plymouth Heritage Statement" (PDF). Plymouth City Council. November 2006. Archived from the original (PDF) on 24 September 2015.
  2. ^ "Other Data". Naval Biographical Database. Retrieved 13 March 2019.
  3. ^ "Nore, Dover, Portsmouth and Plymouth Commands, January 1942". Retrieved 13 March 2019.
  4. ^ "Plymouth Maritime Headquarters - Mount Wise (1)". Subterranea Britannica. 13 December 2004. Retrieved 13 March 2019.
  5. ^ a b "Plymouth Maritime Headquarters - Mount Wise (2)". Subterranea Britannica. 13 December 2004. Retrieved 13 March 2019.
  6. ^ "Port Admirals (Commanders-in-Chief) Portsmouth (1714–1931)". History in Portsmouth. Archived from the original on 27 June 2015. Retrieved 13 March 2019.
  7. ^ Whitaker's Almanacks 1869–1969
  8. ^ "Principal Royal Navy Commanders-in-Chief 1830–1899". Retrieved 13 March 2019.
  9. ^ Mackie, Colin. "Royal Navy Senior Appointments" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 15 March 2012. Retrieved 13 March 2019.
  10. ^ "Dockyard Timeline: 1971 – Admiral Superintendents become Port Admirals". Portsmouth Royal Dockyard Historical Trust. Retrieved 19 December 2017.
This page was last edited on 13 March 2019, at 14:54
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