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25th May 1915 - The Great War, Day by Day - The Wartime Memories Project

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The Wartime Memories Project - The Great War - Day by Day



25th May 1915

On this day:


  • Leeds Pals leave Breary Banks   The 15th West Yorks, Leeds Pals left the training camp at Breary Banks, Colsterdale, bound for Egypt.

  • End of Battle of Festuberg   6th County of London Brigade RFA report: So as to prevent the enemy from making a counter attack, the artillery of the Division were ordered to form a barrage of fire. The 15th London Battery fired continuously on J.10 and at 0315 caught enemy infantry coming out of their trench at J.3. At 0600 observation stations at Rue D’Ouvert were bombarded. Enemy working parties were engaged at K.6 and K.7. More enemy in Rue D’Ouvert and enemy at J.8 - J.10 registered. The 16th London Battery were responsible for J.7 - J.10, at which they fired one hundred and sixteen rounds. Eighty one rounds were fired at enemy observation stations at Charelle St Roche, followed by twenty eight rounds. 17th London Battery cut wire in several places and fired on an enemy working party.

    War Diaries


  • 25th May 1915 9th Lancers in camp

  • HMS Triumph   

    HMS Triumph

    HMS Triumph, (Swiftsure class) pre-dreadnought battleship.
    Built Vickers, Barrow, laid down February 1902, completed June 1904, cost £956,596.
    Size: Length 462 feet 6 inch waterline 475 feet 3 inch overall, beam 71 feet 2 inches, draught 24 feet 8 inches, displacement 11,740 load 13,432 tons deep.
    Propulsion: 2 shaft Triple Expansion, 12,500 ihp, speed 19 knots.

    Armour: 7-3inch belt, 10inch barbettes, 10inch gun houses, 3-1inch decks.
    Armament: 4 x 10inch 45 cal BL (2 x 2), 14 x 7.5inch BL (14 x 1), 14 x 14pounder QF (14 x 1), 2 x 12pounder QF (2 x 1), 4 x 6pounder (4 x 1), 2 x 18inch TT.
    Crew complement 729 Offficers and ratings.

    Originally designed by Sir Edward Reed for Chile to counter Argentinean armoured cruisers but owing to financial problems the ships were put up for sale before completion. The ships were purchased by the British government in December 1903 mainly to prevent their possible sale to Russia. The design emphasised speed and a heavy secondary armament at the expense of protection and main armament.

    Swiftsure Class. As you would expect for a design originally for overseas navy these ships were quite distinctive from the normal British designs with wide spaced funnels and prominent cranes between them, smaller main gun turrets. The ships were only considered Second Class Battleships in British service.

    The two ships had slightly different main guns as they were armed by their respective builders. They were the only British battleships to mount a 7.5 inch gun although that calibre was used in some cruisers. Likewise the 14 pounder anti torpedo boat guns were unique to this class.

    World War 1 Service:

    • In reserve at Hong Kong at the start of war and re-commissioned there.
    • Took part in search for Admiral Graf Spee and captured a German collier.
    • August-November 1914 attached to Japanese Second Fleet for action against German base at Tsingtau.
    • November 1914-January 1915 under refit at Hong Kong.
    • February 1915 joined Dardanelles Squadron.
    • Took part in attacks on forts and supported landings.
    • 18 April 1915 one of her picket boats along with one from HMS Majestic destroyed the grounded British submarine E15 to prevent capture.
    • 25 May 1915 torpedoed and sunk by German submarine U21.

    Upon completion of her refit in January 1915, Triumph was transferred to the Dardanelles for service in the Dardanelles Campaign. The ship departed Hong Kong on 12 January and stopped at Suez from 7 February to 12 February before moving on to join the Dardanelles Squadron. Triumph took part in the opening attack on the entrance forts on 18 February and 19 February, and joined the pre-dreadnoughts Albion and Cornwallis in using her secondary battery to silence the fort at Sedd el Bahr on 25 February. She, Albion, and Majestic were the first Allied battleships to enter the Turkish Straits during the campaign when they carried out the initial attack on the inner forts on 26 February. She also took part in the attack on Fort Dardanos on 2 March 1915. She and Swiftsure were detached from the Dardanelles on 5 March for operations against forts at Smyrna, returning to the Dardanelles on 9 March.

    Triumph participated in the main attack on the Narrows forts on 18 March, and fired on Ottoman trenches at Achi Baba on 15 April. On 18 April, one of her picket boats and one from Majestic torpedoed and sank the British submarine E15, which had run aground near Fort Dardanos and was in danger of being captured by Ottoman forces. Triumph supported the main landing by the Anzac forces at Gaba Tepe on 25 April, and continued to support them through May. On 25 May, the ship was underway off Gaba Tepe, firing on Ottoman positions, with torpedo nets out and most watertight doors shut, when she sighted a submarine periscope 300 to 400 yards (270 to 370 m) off her starboard beam at about 1230 hours. It belonged to the U-boat U-21. Triumph opened fire on the periscope, but was almost immediately struck by a torpedo, which easily cut through her torpedo net, on her starboard side. A tremendous explosion resulted, and Triumph took on a list 10° to starboard. She held that list for about five minutes, then it increased to 30°. The destroyer Chelmer evacuated most of her crew before she capsized ten minutes later. She remained afloat upside down for about 30 minutes, then began to sink slowly in about 180 feet (55 m) of water. Three officers and 75 enlisted men died in her sinking.

    John Doran


  • Instruction at 1st Middlesex Regiment   Operation last night resulted in no casualties occurring in 19 IB. Reinforcements at Advanced Post returned at 8 am. Lt. Millar proceeded to trenches of 1/Middlesex Regiment for instruction by Lt. Soltau MO* of that Regiment.

    * Medical Officer

    War diary RAMC 19th Field Ambulance, Erquinghem-Lys


  • 25th May 1915 Hold at any Cost

  • 25th May 1915 Burned or Poisoned

  • 25th May 1915 Making trenches Safer.

  • 25th May 1915 Under Attack

  • 25th May 1915 Inspection & Presparations

  • 25th May 1915 Glorious Day

  • 25th May 1915 The Effects of Gas

  • 25th May 1915 Working Party

  • 25th May 1915 In the Trenches

  • 25th May 1915 Quiet

  • 25th May 1915 Reliefs Completed

  • 25th May 1915 Ship Lost

  • 25th of May 1915 Into the Front Line

  • 25th of May 1915 Ready to Attack

  • 25th of May 1915 Into the Attack

  • 25th of May 1915 Hold Up in the Advance

  • 25th of May 1915 Heavy Counterattacks

  • 25th of May 1915 Consolidating Captured Trench

  • 25th of May 1915 Zeppelin in the area

  • 25th of May 1915 Enemy digging in

  • 25th of May 1915 HQ moved

  • 25th of May 1915 149th report

  • 25th of May 1915 Divisional Report Centre re-locates

  • 25th of May 1915 Move to billets

  • 25th of May 1915 Zeppelin position

  • 25th of May 1915 Air attack

  • 25th of May 1915 Zeppelin signals

  • 28th May 1915 On the March

  • Second Military Service Act   The Second Military Service Act takes effect in Britain, Married men are deemed to have enlisted under the same circumstances as applied to unmarried men on 27th January of this year, requiring all eligible British men between the ages of 19 and 40 to report, excluding men working in agriculture, mining or the railroads.





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Want to know more?


There are:34 articles tagged with this date available in our Library

  These include information on officers service records, letters, diaries, personal accounts and information about actions during the Great War.




Remembering those who died this day.

  • Lt. Robert Christopher Barbor. Royal Field Artillery 54th Bde. Read their Story.
  • Pte. John Behan. Royal Dublin Fusiliers 2nd Btn. Read their Story.
  • Cpl. Thomas Chalmers. King's Royal Rifle Corps. 4th Btn Read their Story.
  • Pte. John William Edwards. Durham Light Infantry 7th Btn. Read their Story.
  • Pte. Joseph Riley Green. East Lancashire Regiment 1/5th Btn. Read their Story.
  • Eli Holmes. Suffolk Regiment 1st Bn.
  • Rfmn. Lovell William Lack. London Regiment (First Surrey Rifles) 1st/21st Battalion
  • Rflmn. Richard Sadler Lyus. London Regiment 6th Btn. Read their Story.
  • Pte. James Robertson. Highland Light Infantry 12th Btn. Read their Story.
  • Pte. George Senior. Cheshire Regimeny 2nd Btn. Read their Story.
  • L/Cpl. Albert Victor Wagstaff. Devonshire Regiment 1st Btn.
  • Sjt. George Ernest White. Durham Light Infantry 5th Btn.

    Add a name to this list.


  • Items from the Home Front Archive


    Do you have any letters, photos, postcards, documents or memorabilia from the Great War? We would love to include copies. Please use this form to submit diary entries and letters or photographs for this new Section: add to this archive.





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