East Africa Witu 1890 Naval Brigade, Great War Atlantic and long service group awarded to Ships Corporal 1st Class T.W. Beames, Royal Navy, formerly a Gunner with the Royal Marine Artillery, prior to his transfer for service with the Naval Police from March 1893 onwards. With the torpedo cruiser Brisk, he saw service off East Africa during the Witu Expedition which lasted from 17th to 27th October 1890, when as part of the Naval Brigade with the force led by Vice Admiral Sir Edmund Fremantle against the Sultan Fumo Bakari of Witu who had counte

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East Africa Witu 1890 Naval Brigade, Great War Atlantic and long service group awarded to Ships Corporal 1st Class T.W. Beames, Royal Navy, formerly a Gunner with the Royal Marine Artillery, prior to his transfer for service with the Naval Police from March 1893 onwards. With the torpedo cruiser Brisk, he saw service off East Africa during the Witu Expedition which lasted from 17th to 27th October 1890, when as part of the Naval Brigade with the force led by Vice Admiral Sir Edmund Fremantle against the Sultan Fumo Bakari of Witu who had countenanced the murder of several Germans. This area of present day Kenya, formerly under the control of the German East Africa Company, was transferred to the British under the Anglo-German Agreement in 1890. Having transferred from the Royal Marine Artillery to the Royal Navy in 1893, he served with the Naval Police for the remainder of his career, being awarded the long service medal whilst with Minotaur in 1902, and invalided from service in 1904. Recalled on the outbreak of the Great War, Beames saw service aboard the cruiser Vindictive, when she was assigned to the 9th Cruiser Squadron and captured the German merchantmen Schlesien and Slawentzitz on 7th August and 8th September respectively. In 1915 she was stationed on the southeast coast of South America. He saw shore service at Portsmouth from July 1916 onwards.

Group of 5: East and West Africa Medal 1887-1900, 1 Clasp: Witu 1890; (T.W. BEAMES, GUNNER R.M.A., H.M.S. BRISK.); 1914-1915 Star; (150084. T.W. BEAMES. SH.CPL.1., R.N.); British War Medal and Victory Medal; (150084 T.W. BEAMES. SH.CPL.1 R.N.); Royal Navy Long Service and Good Conduct Medal, Victoria narrow suspension; (T.W. BEAMES, SH.CORP 1CL., H.M.S. MINOTAUR.)

Condition: Good Very Fine.

Thomas William Beames was born on 23rd August 1866 in Falfield near Thornbury, Gloucestershire, and having worked as a labourer, then joined the Royal Marine Artillery as a Private (No.2800) with the Base Depot at Walmer on 22nd January 1886, and on completion of his training was then posted as a Gunner to L Company of the Royal Marine Artillery on 9th December 1886.

His first service afloat was aboard Cyclops from July to August 1887, and he then joined the torpedo cruiser Brisk from 20th November 1888. Beames was aboard Brisk when he saw service off East Africa during the Witu Expedition which lasted from 17th to 27th October 1890. This expedition was led by Vice Admiral Sir Edmund Fremantle against the Sultan Fumo Bakari of Witu who had countenanced the murder of several Germans. This area of present day Kenya, formerly under the control of the German East Africa Company, was transferred to the British under the Anglo-German Agreement in 1890. Beames who was one of the naval brigade, received the East and West Africa Medal 1887-1900 with clasp for Witu 1890, and was one 83 men of Brisk to receive the medal with this clasp.

Beames was posted off Brisk on 31st October 1891 when his ship was paid off. and having travelled home aboard the troopship Orontes, was then posted to the shore base Pembroke from July 1893, and on 25th March 1893 transferred on probation to the Naval Police, being finally discharged from the Royal Marine Artillery when his period of probation came to an end on 5th April 1894, after which he continued in the service of the Naval Police as a Ships Corporal 2nd Class (Portsmouth No.150084) with Pembroke. Posted to Tyne from 13th March 1895, he was promoted to Ships Corporal 1st Class on 25th March 1895, and was promoted to Master-At-Arms whilst with Humber on 28th September 1898. He seems to have then reverted to Ships Corporal 1st Class whilst with Rodney on 7th May 1899 and was serving aboard Minotaur when he was awarded the Royal Navy Long Service and Good Conduct Medal on 17th January 1902. Beames was invalided from service on 7th July 1904.

Having then joined the Royal Fleet Reserve, on the outbreak of the Great War he was mobilise as a Ships Corporal 1st Class with Vindictive on 2nd August 1914. Vindictive was an old cruiser that was obsolete on the outbreak of the war, and had up till then been used as a tender to the training establishment Vernon. However she was brought back into active service in August 1914 when she was assigned to the 9th Cruiser Squadron and captured the German merchantmen Schlesien and Slawentzitz on 7th August and 8th September respectively. In 1915 she was stationed on the southeast coast of South America. From 1916 to late 1917 she served in the White Sea. Beames was transferred to Victory I from 1st July 1916, and hence would have missed Vindictive’s service in the White Sea off north Russia, and then remained on shore service for the rest of the war being demobilised on 18th March 1919. Confirmed as his full entitlement.