Life & Career
This article is based largely on the summary of Ramsbotham's papers at the Imperial War Museum.
Ramsbotham was promoted to the rank of Midshipman on 15 May, 1908 and was appointed to the battleship Albemarle on the same day, serving in her into 1909. Later in 1909, he served in the battleship King Edward VII.
He was appointed to the battleship Queen on 29 July, 1914, serving in her until 22 November 1914 when he was appointed to the destroyer Mentor for navigating duties. This would establish the pattern of his wartime service, in which he served as navigating officer in a number of mostly small ships. He was appointed to the old torpedo gunboat Hazard, which was operating as a depot ship in support of a submarine flotilla, as navigator on 31 January, 1915.
After the war, he served as Navigating Officer of the flotilla leader H.M.S. Stuart as she assisted in the evacuation of White Russian troops and refugees from Black Sea ports in 1919 and 1920.
He served in the light cruiser Diomede on the China Station between 1922 and 1925 and in the aircraft carrier Eagle on the Mediterranean Station in 1926, in June of which year he was promoted to the rank of Commander.
Ramsbotham was among the many notable naval officers who attended a Royal Navy Club dinner on 28 March, 1930 at the Hotel Victoria. Vice Admiral Frank Larken was presiding, and the Earl of Liverpool was the honoured guest. Jellicoe and Dreyer were also in attendance.
He commanded the Royal New Zealand Navy sweeping sloop Laburnum in the Pacific from 28 August 1931 through 1938. His memoirs contain much colour regarding venereal disease and homosexual behaviour on these two ships during this period.
Ramsbotham served as King's Harbour Master and Captain of the Dockyard, Sheerness from 1935 through 1938 before becoming Inspector of Coastguard for Yorkshire and Lincolnshire from 1938 until 1951.
Charles E. Hotham
|Captain of H.M.S. Laburnum
28 Aug, 1931
Alexander H. Maxwell-Hyslop
- The Navy List. (July, 1908). p. 62.
- The Navy List. (July, 1908). p. 275.
- The Navy List. (December, 1914). p. 139.
- The Navy List. (December, 1914). p. 375c.
- The Navy List. (January, 1915). p. 356.
- The Navy List. (October, 1915). p. 394m.
- The Navy List. (November, 1917). p. 394v.
- "Naval Military, And Air Force." The Times (London, England), Monday, Feb 24, 1930; pg. 19; Issue 45445.
- "Naval, Military, And Air Force." The Times (London, England), Friday, Oct 04, 1929; pg. 9; Issue 45325.
- "Royal Navy Club." The Times (London, England), Saturday, Mar 29, 1930; pg. 14; Issue 45474.
- The Navy List. (January, 1933). p. 250.