Grand Fleet

The Grand Fleet was a fleet of the British Royal Navy during the First World War.


It was formed in 1914 by the British Atlantic Fleet combined with the Home Fleet and it included 35-40 state-of-the-art capital ships. It was initially commanded by Admiral Sir John Jellicoe. He was later succeeded by the commander of the Grand Fleet battlecruisers Admiral Sir David Beatty. The Grand Fleet was based in Scapa Flow in the Orkney Islands. The Grand Fleet only took part in one fleet action during the war, the indecisive Battle of Jutland. More British ships were sunk than German, although the German High Seas Fleet was damaged to the extent that it was unable to put to sea for a number of months. Strategically, Jutland was a British victory because the British fleet retained control of the North Sea with no further challenge from the German Navy.

After the war the Grand Fleet was disbanded with much of its strength forming a new Atlantic Fleet.

Order of battle

The Grand Fleet's order of battle in May 1916 was:

Battle fleet

1st Battle Squadron

2nd Battle Squadron

4th Battle Squadron

1st Cruiser Squadron

(Armoured Cruisers)

2nd Cruiser Squadron

(Armoured Cruisers)

4th Light Cruiser Squadron

Attached Light Cruisers

4th Destroyer Flotilla

11th Destroyer Flotilla

12th Destroyer Flotilla


The Battle Cruiser Force

Known before late 1916 as the Battle Cruiser Fleet.

1st Battlecruiser Squadron

2nd Battlecruiser Squadron

3rd Battlecruiser Squadron

5th Battle Squadron

1st Light Cruiser Squadron

2nd Light Cruiser Squadron

3rd Light Cruiser Squadron

Seaplane Carrier

1st Destroyer Flotilla

9th and 10th Destroyer Flotillas (combined)

13th Destroyer Flotilla

External links

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