Broadway, Albert William - I10716

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Albert William Broadway, RN, DSM

Albert William Broadway, was born in 1893 in Oxford, the son of William and Annie Broadway. On 1 June 1910, Albert signed up for 12 years service with the Royal Navy. From his service record though, it appears that Albert had served as a "Boy, 2nd Class", from 7 August 1908, when he would have been just 16 years old. Albert served on 24 different vessels during his career, including several submarines.

I have not been able to find a photograph of submarine "G7", but all the "G" class submarines were very similar, if not identical. This photo is of the submarine "G9" taken in Scapa Flow around the same time.
Albert held the rank of Able Bodied Ordinary Seaman (AB Ord) until 20 January 1916, when he was promoted to Leading Seaman. The London Gazette, on 1 January 1917, notes the award of the "Distinguished Service Medal" (D.S.M.). In my research I have not been able to find a copy of this newspaper in the London Gazette archives. The reason for the award therefore remains a mystery. However, click this link to see the medal and the terms under which it was normally awarded.

A note on Albert's service record dated 14 September 1917, suggests that he had passed his proficiency test for promotion to Petty Officer (see below).

Albert was serving on the submarine "G7" when it was called to undertake routine patrols of the North Sea. The submarine left port early in October 1918, but on 23 October 1918, radio contact was lost and she was never heard from again. Speculation suggests that the submarine probably hit a mine, as they were abundant in the North Sea at that time. A week later, on 1 November 1918, the submarine was finally given up for lost and all aboard officially declared missing, presumed dead.

More about the "G" Class Submarines

The Royal Navy's G-class of diesel/electric submarines were launched between 1914 and 1917, and intended for operations in the North Sea and German Bight in World War I against German U-boats. The design was based on the E-class, adopting the double hull concept, but in practice showed little improvement, the ships notoriously slow to dive.

A total of 14 boats were built at four yards: G1 to G5 by Chatham Dockyard, G6 & G7 by Armstrong Whitworth, G8 to G13 by Vickers, and G14 by Scott's on the Clyde. G15 was ordered from Samuel White's yard at Cowes, Isle of Wight, but cancelled. The class was distinguished by the 21-inch stern torpedo tube, an electric oven in the galley, and Fessenden Underwater Sound Telegraphy. The G-class had their bows raised during the war to increase buoyancy and improve seakeeping.

With a displacement of 703 tons (surface) and 837 tons (submerged), the "G" class subs were 57.5 metres in length and were powered by 2 x 800bhp 8 cylinder Vickers diesel engines and 2 x 420bhp electric motors. Albert was one of a crew of 31 serving on "G7" which was launched on 14 March 1916. For more details of the "G" class submarines, visit Barrow Submariner's Association

Albert's Naval Career


Visit Albert's page on my main site