The crew of HMS E11, responding to the cheers of comrades on HMS Grampus as they sailed out from the Dardanelles Straits, after sinking the Turkish battleship Babarousse Hayredine (Photo © IWM Q 13262)

Gallipoli submariner VC remembered in Scotland

Posted on on 18 July 2015
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Britain's Royal Navy has paid tribute to a submariner who was awarded the Victoria Cross for his actions during the Gallipoli Campaign.

A paving stone honouring Lieutenant Commander Martin Dunbar-Nasmith was unveiled in the Scottish village of Rothes, near Elgin, on June 25th 2015.

Present-day submariners from the Faslane Naval Base on the Clyde joined the VC winner's son, architect Sir James Dunbar-Nasmith, and local people for the ceremony.

Lt Cdr Nasmith sank more than 90 ships during three patrols of the Sea of Marmara in HMS E11, forcing his way through the minefields and currents of the Dardanelles to reach his targets. 

In June 1915, he penetrated the Ottoman capital Constantinople (now Istanbul), sinking a coal ship in the harbour in full view of dignitaries gathered at the dockside.

The patrols were aimed at preventing troops and supplies reaching Turkish troops fighting Allied forces on the Gallipoli peninsula.

Commodore Mike Walliker, deputy rear admiral submarines, said “We owe a debt of gratitude to the likes of Martin Nasmith.

"Although the Submarine Service was born in 1901, it really came of age in World War I.

"As a Service, our history has been shaped by conflict. And throughout the years, our submariners have remained constant to an ethos that was honed in the dangerous and unforgiving waters of the Dardanelles in 1915."

Sir Martin Dunbar-Nasmith rose to the rank of Admiral, serving as Second Sea Lord and commander of the Western Approaches to the British Isles at the start of the Second World War.

The laying of paving stones remembering the 628 Victorian Crosses awarded during the First World War is a British government initiative marking the Centenary. 

Sources: Royal Navy; Wikipedia 

Images courtesy of the Imperial War Museum © IWM (Q 13262)

Posted by: Peter Alhadeff, Centenary News