Buntings' Corner

Disposition Board.

A tribute to Chris Rickard.

Tufnell Box.

The History of Semaphore

Signal Letters of British Warships

Pennant Numbers for 1944

Mechanical Semaphore

Introduced in 1874 on HMS VICTORY, worked manually, by use of the operator holding the arms in the appropirate position. 6 feet in height and constructed of rather cumbersome sprockets and chains made to a special Admiralty pattern. In 1941 the firm of Thomas Haywood realized that ordinary bicycle chains would be cheaper and equally effective. Sets such as this were delivered to the Signal School at Chatham to be used as a training aid. In 1942, HMS CABBALA installed small mechanical semaphores for training V/S Wrens, just a year before mechanical semaphores were finally withdrawn from ships to save top-weight. This is one of the few remaining mechanical semaphores, as used at both the Signal School at Chatham and HMS CABBALA, and is identical to the bigger mechanical semaphores introduced to the fleet in 1874.

Signalling Lamps

Signalling Torch circa WWII

5 inch Hand Signal Light

Intermediate Signalling Light

Colour signal light (battery)

The Paget Patent Portable Nautical Instructional Cabinet

  The Paget Patent Portable Nautical Instructional Cabinet was invented by B.T. Paget of 16a Hart Street, Henley-on-Thames, Oxon in 1952/53.  Patent applied for in 1952 and granted in 1953.  The cabinet was listed as a Signalling Teaching Aid.  It contains a basic set of flags for which hoists could be made up and 'hung' on the right hand door.  It is believed that its prime purpose was for the teaching of Navigation as it provided a significant number of Navigation markers and also displayed various masthead light configurations

Instructions for the use of Paget's Patent Portable Nautical Instructional Cabinet

Flag/Pennants/Dress Ship


Dress Ship