{With poetic licence, 2014 is only ten years away, and if anything, the number of admirals in the royal navy will get less as time goes on}, therefore

the subject is:

The ADMIRALS we had when the ROYAL NAVY was omnipotent in terms of numbers of ships and men versus the ADMIRALS we have today when clearly, that position no longer exists. 

What follows is a list of flag ranked officers and their appointments as at August 1914, followed by a similar list showing flag officers of today and their appointments.

Why 1914? Well, just before Jutland, {31st May 1916} the royal navy was at its pinnacle in numbers of ships and men which has never been repeated. So, we are going to look at the management when Britannia did rule the waves as compared with the royal navy today, a much reduced force, but nevertheless, still very Royal and still a force to be reckoned with on the international scene:  size is certainly NOT everything, and because of the royal navy's "attitude" towards its role, it still holds number two position in the world's navies in material criteria, and who knows, in terms of sheer professionalism, possibly number one slot, although those Yankee boy's are a proud bunch and I fear, our equal in style and panache.  

There are some fascinating names below [Christian as well as surname e.g. Rear Admiral Charles Dundas of Dundas {wonderful stuff} and some of their appointments are a history and geography lesson rolled into one!  There are also many famous admirals listed here.    

Rank Name Appointment
Admiral of the Fleet His Majesty King George V HM The King and Commander-in-Chief. HM had been made a rear admiral on his grandmother's death in 1901, a vice admiral in 1903, an admiral in 1907 and  AofF on the 7th May 1910 on becoming king after the death of his father Edward VII.
Admiral of the Fleet His Imperial Majesty William II, German Emperor and King of Prussia KG GCVO Honorary Officer in HM's Fleet - struck off at the start of WW1.
Admiral of the Fleet His Royal Highness Prince Albert William Henry of Prussia KG GCB Honorary Officer in HM's Fleet - struck off at the start of WW1
Admiral of the Fleet Sir Gerard Henry Uctred Noel GCB KCMG ACTIVE LIST
Admiral of the Fleet Sir Arthur Dalrymple Fanshawe GCB GCVO ACTIVE LIST
Admiral of the Fleet Sir William Henry May GCB GCVO ACTIVE LIST
Admiral His Majesty King Haakon VII of Norway KG GCB GCVO Honorary Officer in HM's Fleet - seniority 25 Nov 1905
Admiral His Majesty King Gustavus V of Sweden, of the Goths and the Vends KG GCB Honorary Officer in HM's Fleet - seniority 3 Nov 1908
Admiral Sir Edmund Samuel PoŽ GCVO KCB First and principal Naval Aide-de-Camp to the King
Admiral The Hon Sir Hedworth Meux GCB KCVO Extra Equerry to the King and Commander-in-Chief Portsmouth
Admiral Sir Richard Poore Bt., KCB CVO Commander-in-Chief Nore
Admiral Sir Archibald Berkeley Milne Bt., GCVO KCB Extra Equerry to the King and Commander-in-Chief Mediterranean
Admiral His Serene Highness Prince Louis Alexander of Battenberg GCB GCVO KCMG Personal Aide-de-Camp to the King and a Lord Commissioner of the Admiralty.
Admiral Sir George Le Clerc Egerton KCB Commander-in-Chief Plymouth
Admiral Sir Frederic William Fisher KCVO President of the Royal Naval College Greenwich
Admiral Sir George Astley Callaghan GCVO KCB Commander-in-Chief Home Fleets
Admiral Sir Frederick Samuel Inglefield KCB not listed
Admiral Sir Alfred Wyndham Paget KCB KCMG not listed
Admiral Sir Robert Swinburne Lowry KCB Admiral Commanding on the Coast of Scotland
Admiral Sir Henry Bradwardine Jackson KCB KCVO FRS Chief of the War Staff 6.1.1913. tbrb Vice Admiral Sir F.C. Doveton Sturdee
Vice Admiral The Hon Sir Stanley Cecil James Colville KCB CVO not listed
Vice Admiral Sir Arthur Murray Farquhar KCB CVO Admiral commanding Coat Guard and Reserves
Vice Admiral William Blake Fisher CB not listed
Vice Admiral Ernest Alfred Simons not listed
Vice Admiral Sir John Rushworth Jellicoe KCB A Lord Commissioner of the Admiralty
Vice Admiral James Startin CB not listed
Vice Admiral Sir Paul Warner Bush KCB MVO not listed
Vice Admiral Sir Charles John Briggs KCB not listed
Vice Admiral Sir Frederick Tower Hamilton KCB CVO not listed
Vice Admiral Sir Cecil Burney KCB KCMG Vice Admiral commanding second and third fleets
Vice Admiral Frederick Sidney Pelham not listed
Vice Admiral The Hon Sir Alexander Edward Bethell KCB KCMG In command of the RN War College
Vice Admiral Frederick Edward Errington Brock CB Senior Officer and in charge of all H.M. Naval Establishments at Gibraltar
Vice Admiral Hugh Pigot Williams not listed
Vice Admiral Sir Charles Henry Coke KCVO Vice Admiral Commanding on the Coast of Ireland
Vice Admiral Thomas Henry Martyn Jerram KCB Commander-in-Chief China Station
Vice Admiral Sir George John Scott Warrender Bt., KCB KCVO Vice Admiral Commanding second battle squadron
Vice Admiral Sir Douglas Austin Gamble KCVO Vice Admiral Commanding fourth battle squadron
Vice Admiral Sir Frederick Charles Doveton Sturdee KCB CVO CMG To be the new Chief of War Staff in place of Admiral Jackson .
Vice Admiral Robert Nelson Ommanney CB not listed
Vice Admiral Edward Eden Bradford CVO Vice Admiral Commanding 3rd Battle Squadron
Vice Admiral Sir Edmond John Warre Slade KCIE KCVO not listed
Rear Admiral Sackville Hamilton Carden Admiral Superintendent of Malta Dockyard
Rear Admiral Richard Bowles Farquhar Vice President of Ordnance Board
Rear Admiral Sir Lewis Bayly KCB CVO Vice Admiral Commanding first battle squadron  with acting rank of Vice Admiral
Rear Admiral Sir George Edwin Patey KCVO Lent to the Australian Government as Rear Admiral in command of HM Australian Fleet
Rear Admiral Arthur Henry Limpus CB Lent to the Turkish Government
Rear Admiral Richard Henry Peirse KCB MVO Commander-in-Chief East Indies
Rear Admiral Herbert Goodenough King-Hall CVO CB DSO Commander-in-Chief Cape of Good Hope
Rear Admiral Arthur Yerbury Moggridge not listed
Rear Admiral William Lowther Grant CB not listed
Rear Admiral Sir David Beatty KCB MVO DSO Rear Admiral commanding the first battle-cruiser squadron
Rear Admiral Henry Loftus Tottenham CB not listed
Rear Admiral Charles Dundas of Dundas not listed
Rear Admiral Sir Christopher George Francis Maurice Cradock KCVO CB Rear Admiral commanding fourth cruiser squadron
Rear Admiral Reginald Godfrey Otway Tupper CVO not listed
Rear Admiral Bernard Currey Rear Admiral in Home Fleets, Portsmouth
Rear Admiral Ernest Charles Thomas Troubridge CB CMG MVO Rear Admiral commanding first cruiser squadron
Rear Admiral Archibald Gordon Henry Wilson Moore CVO CB A Lord Commissioner of the Admiralty
Rear Admiral Charles Edward Madden CVO not listed
Rear Admiral Rosslyn Wemyss CMG MVO Extra Equerry to the King
Rear Admiral Charles Eustace Anson MVO Admiral Superintendent Chatham Dockyard
Rear Admiral Cecil Fiennes Thursby CMG not listed
Rear Admiral Arthur Henry Christian MVO not listed
Rear Admiral The Hon Somerset Arthur Gough-Calthorpe CVO CB Rear Admiral commanding second cruiser squadron
Rear Admiral Herbert Leopold Heath MVO Admiral Superintendent of Portsmouth Dockyard
Rear Admiral Montague Edward Browning MVO Rear Admiral third battle squadron
Rear Admiral John Michael de Robeck not listed
Rear Admiral Richard Purefoy FitzGerald Purefoy MVO not listed
Rear Admiral Arthur William Waymouth Director of Naval Equipment
Rear Admiral Godfrey Harry Brydges Mundy MVO Admiral Superintendent Devonport Dockyard
Rear Admiral Archibald Peile Stoddart Rear Admiral in the Home Fleets, Devonport
Rear Admiral Hugh Evan-Thomas MVO Rear Admiral first battle squadron
Rear Admiral Sir Robert Keith Arbuthnot Bt., MVO Rear Admiral second battle squadron
Rear Admiral Stuart Nicholson MVO Rear Admiral in the Home Fleets, Nore
Rear Admiral Dudley Rawson Stratford de Chair CB MVO Admiral of the Training Services
Rear Admiral Henry Hervey Campbell CVO not listed
Rear Admiral Frederick Charles Tudor Tudor CB Director of Ordnance and Torpedoes
Rear Admiral Charles Lionel Napier CB not listed
Rear Admiral Alexander Ludovic Duff CB Director of the mobilisation division of the Admiralty war staff
Rear Admiral Reginald Arthur Allenby MVO not listed
Rear Admiral Seymour Elphinstone Erskine not listed
Rear Admiral John de Mestre Hutchinson CVO CMG not listed
Rear Admiral Edward Francis Benedict Charlton CB Assistant Director of torpedoes
Rear Admiral Robert Stewart Phipps Hornby CMG Employed on Committee
Rear Admiral Mark Edward Frederick Kerr CB MVO Lent for duties with Greek Government
Rear Admiral The Hon Horace Lambert Alexander Hood CB MVO DSO Naval Secretary to the First Sea Lord of the Admiralty
Rear Admiral John Bridges Eustace not listed
Rear Admiral William Christopher Pakenham CB MVO Rear Admiral commanding third cruiser squadron
Rear Admiral Cresswell John Eyres not listed
Rear Admiral Francis Spurstow Miller not listed
Rear Admiral Francis George Eyre not listed
Rear Admiral Trevylyan Dacres Willes Napier MVO not listed
Rear Admiral Arthur Cavenagh Leveson CB Director of operations division of the Admiralty war staff
Rear Admiral Sydney Robert Fremantle MVO not listed
Rear Admiral Henry Francis Oliver CB MVO Director of intelligence division of the Admiralty war staff
Rear Admiral Charles Adolphe Marescaux not listed
Rear Admiral Edmund Radcliffe Pears not listed
Rear Admiral Arthur David Ricardo not listed
Rear Admiral The Hon Robert Francis Boyle MVO not listed
In summary, and not counting the struck-off Admiral's of the Fleet, there were 4 Admiral's of the Fleet, 14 Admiral's, 22 Vice Admiral's and 58 Rear Admiral's on the active list as at August 1914. These were the men who were appointed as Commissioners for the Lord High Admiral Click to enlarge

By the time we arrive here in 2004 the rules have been changed.  The Royal Family have taken more naval ranks than ever before and the rank of Admiral of the Fleet is now in abeyance in peace time. Naturally, with the reduction in the navy there are fewer junior admirals, but surprisingly more Admiral's of the Fleet than in 1914. Admirals who have held the most senior position in the Admiralty remain on the active list after retirement. Had the rank of Admiral of the Fleet still been extant after 1996, the Admirals in this group would have most certainly have become Admirals of the Fleet.

The Lord High Admiral of the United Kingdom.

 {This comes from page Bits and Pieces VOL III article 26 - click for details Click to enlarge}

Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II The Lord High Admiral and The Commander-in-Chief of all United Kingdom Armed Forces.
Admiral of the Fleet HRH Prince Philip The Duke of Edinburgh KG KT OM GBE AC QSO Her Majesty's Consort and Husband
Admiral of the Fleet The Lord Hill Norton GCB ACTIVE LIST
Admiral of the Fleet Sir Michael [Patrick] Pollock GCB LVO DSC ACTIVE LIST
Admiral of the Fleet Sir Edward [Beckwith] Ashmore GCB DSC ACTIVE LIST
Admiral of the Fleet Sir Henry [Conyers] Leach GCB DL ACTIVE LIST
Admiral of the Fleet Sir [John] Julian [Robertson] Oswald GCB ACTIVE LIST
Admiral of the Fleet Sir [David] Benjamin Bathurst GCB DL ACTIVE LIST
Admiral His Majesty King Karl XVI Gustav of Sweden KG Honorary Officer in HM Navy

 

Admiral His Majesty Sultan Haji Hassanal Bolkiah Muizzaddin Waddaulah Sultan and Yang Di-Pertuan of Brunei Darussalam GCB GCMG Honorary Officer in HM Navy
Admiral Sir Kenneth Easton GCB KBE Vice Admiral of the United Kingdom and Lieutenant of the Admiralty
Admiral Sir Alan West KCB DSC ADC First Sea Lord
Admiral Sir Jonathon Band KCB C-in-C Fleet
Admiral Sir Jock [John Cunningham Kirkwood] Slater GCB LVO DL ACTIVE LIST
Admiral The Lord Boyce  GCB OBE ACTIVE LIST
Admiral Sir Peter [Charles] Abbott GBE KCB MA ACTIVE LIST
Admiral Sir Nigel [Richard] Essenhigh GCB ACTIVE LIST
Admiral Sir Ian [David Graham] Garnett Chief of Staff Supreme HQ Allied Powers Europe
Admiral Sir Ian [Andrew] Forbes KCB CBE Deputy Supreme Allied Commander Transformation
Vice Admiral HRH The Prince of Wales KG KT OM GCB AK QSO ADC Personal Aide-de-Camp to HM The Queen
Vice Admiral J M Burnell-Nugent CBE ADC Second Sea Lord - Commander-in-Chief Naval Home Command and Flag ADC to HM The Queen
Vice Admiral Sir James Weatherall KCVO KCB Extra Naval Equerry to HM The Queen
Vice Admiral T Blackburn CB LVO Extra Naval Equerry to HM The Queen
Vice Admiral Sir Paul [Kenneth] Haddocks KCB Director International Military Staff
Vice Admiral Peter Arthur Dunt CB Chief Executive Defence Estimates Agency
Vice Admiral Mark Stanhope OBE MA MNI Deputy C-in-C Fleet
Vice Admiral I L Jenkins QHS CVO MB BCH FCRS Honorary Surgeon to HM The Queen
Rear Admiral HRH The Princess Royal KG GCVO QSO Rear Admiral Chief Commandant for Women in the Royal Navy
Rear Admiral Sir Richard Trowbridge KCVO not listed
Rear Admiral Sir Paul Greening GCVO not listed
Rear Admiral Sir John Garnier KCVO CBE not listed
Rear Admiral Sir Robert Woodward KCVO not listed
Rear Admiral R D Curr QHP MB BS DobstRCOG FRCGP AKC Surgeon Read Admiral
Rear Admiral Adrian J Johns CBE Assistant Naval Chief of Staff
Rear Admiral Nigel C F Guild Controller of the Navy
Rear Admiral Jonathon Reeve CB Naval member for Logistics
Rear Admiral Robert Patrick Stevens CB Chief of Staff to Commander Allied Naval Forces Southern Europe
Rear Admiral Michael George Wood CBE BSc CEng FIMechE Director General [Operations] Defence Logistics Organisation
Rear Admiral Rees Graham John Ward CB MA MSc CEng FIEE Chief Executive Defence Communications Services Agency
Rear Admiral Anthony Knox Dymock CB BA Head of British Defence Staff in Washington DC
Rear Admiral Roger Graham Lockwood BA FCIPD Senior Naval Officer Royal College Defence Studies
Rear Admiral Rory Alistair Ian McLean OBE Assistant Chief of Staff Defence Staff [Resources and Planning]
Rear Admiral Timothy Pentreath McClement OBE Chief of Staff to C-in-C Fleet - Rear Admiral of surface ships
Rear Admiral Scott Lidbetter Air Officer Commanding 3 Group/F.O.  Maritime Aviation
Rear Admiral Peter Rolland Davies CBE MSc CEng FIEE F.O. Training and Recruiting
Rear Admiral Niall Stuart Roderick Kilgour Command Operations to C-in-C Fleet and Rear Admiral of submarines
Rear Admiral James Campsie Rapp Flag Officer Sea Training [FOST]
Rear Admiral Hugh Anthony Edleston MNI AMBIM Military advisor Bosnia and Herzegovina
Rear Admiral Charles Rodney Style CBE MA Strategic Deployments
Rear Admiral Mark William Steatham Kerr BA FCIPD MNI Navy Secretary to Chief Executive Naval Manning
Rear Admiral Peter Jonathon Kidner BSc CEng FRAeS Chief Executive Defence Medical Education
Rear Admiral Robin Paul Bossier MA MSc Deputy Commander Strike Force South
Rear Admiral Richard Frank Cheadle MSc CEng FCMI MIMechE Chief of Staff to Second Sea Lord
Rear Admiral David George Snelson FCMI MNI Commander UK Maritime Force
Rear Admiral Simon Richard James Goodall CBE BA Director General Training and Education
Rear Admiral Nicholas Linton Harris MBE Flaf Officer Scotland and Northern Ireland
In summary, the totals for the year 2004 were: 1 Lord High Admiral, 7 Admiral's of the Fleet, 11 Admirals, 8 Vice Admiral's and 29 Rear Admiral's, as against 4 Admiral's of the Fleet, 14 Admiral's, 22 Vice Admiral's and 58 Rear Admiral's in 1914.  The gains and losses are quite interesting especially when one considers the size of the navy today with that of 1914, and one would expect far fewer admirals today than for nearly 100 years ago. Discounting the Lord High Admiral in our summary the figures should, I believe, look like this.

Considering the 'bottom up' {rather than the 'top down'} scenario, if in 1914 it took 'x' numbers of more senior Admiral's to support the work of 58 Rear Admirals, then how many 'x' numbers of more senior Admiral's would be required to support 29 Rear Admirals, a number which is exactly half. Therefore, we would need half of 22, 14 and 7 [respectively Vice Admiral, Admiral and Admiral of the Fleet bottom-up on the 1914 Admirals list for the 2004 list. This little ratio shows that we should have 2 Admiral's of the Fleet [5 over borne - requiring a reduction of 71.41%], 7 Admirals [4 over borne - requiring a reduction of 36.34%], 11 Vice Admirals [3 under borne - requiring the increase on promotion of 37.5%].

I will endeavour to update this page over the coming years until we reach 2014.