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Go Back   Pollensa Forum > GENERAL > Miscellaneous

Miscellaneous Use this area ONLY if you can't find a suitable home for your topic. We'll create a new area if necessary and reserve the right to move topics to more suitable areas. Only post regarding the Pollensa area. This is not a forum for general discussion.

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Old 13-09-2010, 23:31
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Surrey & Puerto Pollensa!
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Default Pollensa's Royal Navy Heritage!

From Today's Daily Bulletin

A lone reminder of a major show of Royal Navy might

By Jason Moore

A lone gravestone in the cemetery in Alcudia is the only reminder today of one of the biggest gatherings of Royal Navy ships ever seen outside British waters in the Bay of Pollensa.

Royal Air Force observer, Kenneth Cromar Tilman, was killed when his Parnall Panther aircraft was involved in an accident aboard the Royal Navy aircraft carrier, Argus. He is buried in the Alcudia cemetery with part of the propeller of his aircraft set next to the tombstone. Local historian Victoria Canaves has called on the Council of Majorca to make the grave an item of historical heritage.

Tilman, who was serving in the Royal Air Force but was attached to the Royal Navy´s Argus, was part of a major show of force by the Royal Navy which included the combined strengths of both the Atlantic and Mediterranean fleets. Battleships, including the mighty battlecruiser Hood, cruisers, destroyers, submarines and support vessels all dropped anchor in the Bay of Pollensa in 1924. It was quite a sight. You can safely say that the majority of the Royal Navy´s vast strength of capital ships were in Pollensa at that time. In that vast show of strength was Royal Navy aircraft carrier, Argus, which had been especially developed from an Italian cruise ship to become one of the first vessels in the world to operate large numbers of fixed wing aircraft.

Flight Lt. Tilman was an observer on a Panther biplane and would have been heavily involved in helping pioneer the techniques of landing and taking off from ships at sea. The Argus spent most of the 1920s involved in this task and gave the Royal Navy vital experience in this sort of operation. Years later during the Second World War it was this experience which allowed the Royal Navy to plan and execute a daring attack on the Italian Navy which resulted in the destruction of much of their fleet. This same attack was used by the Japanese as a blueprint for their raid on the American Pacific Fleet at Pearl Harbour in 1941.

It is interesting to note that the Royal Navy chose to anchor in Pollensa rather than Palma. Perhaps the port of Palma could not cope with so many vessels moored together.

This show of force in 1924 would have involved thousands of British sailors. The tiny port of Pollensa in those days must have been busier than it is now with the crews of the vessels coming ashore.

Tilman´s gravestone should become an item of natural heritage because in some ways he forms part of the area´s history.
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Old 14-09-2010, 09:39
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Old 14-09-2010, 09:42
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GG were you there?
Sant Antoni 2017

On island time!!
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Old 14-09-2010, 09:54
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I was very pleased to read this article because my son is an RN Commander helicopter pilot/instructor. I am going to send him a copy as i am sure he will be very interested in it too.
Living the dream in PP with my glass half full. "Resistiré" .
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Old 14-09-2010, 11:10
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sws - complete with my 'box brownie'.

A little before my time I have to say!

It must have been an awesome sight thought - the poor little port must have wondered what had hit it.

I wonder if they knew they were coming or woke up and thought they had been invaded
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Old 14-09-2010, 13:28
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Does anyone know who the `show of strength´was aimed at?
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Old 14-09-2010, 15:09
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I have seen his grave.His headstone if you really can call it that is half a wooden propellor with a brass or copper circular name plate nailed to the top of it.
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Old 14-09-2010, 18:42
Join Date: Jul 2010
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Good question about the "show of strength". Guess it may have been aimed at the Italians while the fleet may have been en route to Malta which was strategic for a number of reasons, not least oil interests in the Middle East. Only a guess though.
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Old 14-09-2010, 19:06
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GG where did you get the picture ? Chelseadons
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Old 14-09-2010, 19:10
Gommar Goffer's Avatar
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Debz - go to google images and enter Pollensa 1924 - simples! I think it was from a site called 'battleshipsUK'
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Old 14-09-2010, 21:12
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Rickmansworth , Herts
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Very interesting and I have seen a similar photograph from the war years of several German ships in the bay. Probably about half of the German Mediterranean fleet , anyone seen it ?? Was in the this German's villa at the time and I asked him if that was the Graf Spee ( pointing under the stretch of water just east of Stay ???

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