Holland 1 (or HM submarine Torpedo Boat No 1)

Holland 1 (or HM submarine Torpedo Boat No 1) was the first submarine commissioned by the Royal Navy, the first in a six-boat batch of the Holland-class submarine.
In 1901 it was ordered from John Philip Holland and built at Barrow-in-Furness. In order to keep the boat's construction secret, it was assembled in a building labeled "Yacht Shed", and the parts that had to be fabricated in the general yard were marked for "pontoon no 1". The boat was launched on 2 October 1901 and dived for the first time (in an enclosed basin) on 20 March 1902. Sea trials began in April 1902.
In September 1902 it arrived at Portsmouth with the other completed Holland boat and along with HMS Hazard (their floating submarine base) made up the "First Submarine Flotilla", commanded by Captain Reginald Bacon.
The 'Holland Class' was the first submarine to enter service with the Royal Navy. They had a complement of 2 officers and 5 ratings, often another rating was carried for training purposes. These submarines were petrol driven which proved to be rather hazardous. There were no interior bulkheads in these boats, very little ventilation and even less in the way of accommodation. No sleeping facilities or toilets, this consisted of a bucket which was emptied on surfacing.
Although by today's standards these boats were of a very basic design, lessons were learned and difficulties overcome, they were efficient, easily controlled when dived and no crew members were lost. Due to their low profile they were at their best in calm seas. On the whole they were a success.
On 24 October 1904, with the rest of the Holland fleet and three A-class boats, Holland 1 sailed from Portsmouth to attack a Russian fleet that had mistakenly sunk a number of British fishing vessels in the North Sea in the Dogger Bank incident. The boats were recalled before any attack could take place.
The submarine was decommissioned and sold in 1913 to T W Ward (limited) for £410. By the time the submarine was sold she was considered so obsolete that she was sold with all fittings intact, and the only requirement put on the purchaser was that the torpedo tube be put out of action.
While being towed to the scrapyard Holland 1 encountered very severe weather and sank about a mile and a half off Eddystone lighthouse. No one was on board the submarine at the time, and, since the submarine had been seen to be sinking earlier in the journey, the crew of the tug were ready to release the tow rope, preventing any damage to the tug.
The wreck was located in 1981 by Plymouth historian Michael Pearn and in November 1982 it was raised. From 1983, after coating in anti-corrosion chemicals, it was displayed at the Royal Navy Submarine Museum. Work on restoring the submarine continued until September 1988. However by 1993 it was apparent that the treatment had proved inadequate. A fibreglass tank was built around her, and it was immersed in sodium carbonate solution from 1995. After four years the corrosive chloride ions had been removed, and the boat was able to be displayed again after restoration work.

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