Augustus Phillimore

Admiral Sir Augustus Phillimore KCB FRGS (24 May 1822 – 25 November 1897) was a Royal Navy officer who went on to be Commander-in-Chief, Plymouth. He is credited with first proposing the creation of a modern naval dockyard in Gibraltar.

Sir Augustus Phillimore
Captain Phillimore
Born(1822-05-24)24 May 1822
Whitehall, London, England
Died25 November 1897(1897-11-25) (aged 75)
Botley, Hampshire
Allegiance United Kingdom
Service/branch Royal Navy
Years of service1835–1887
Commands heldHMS Medea
HMS Curacoa
HMS Defence
Plymouth Command
Battles/warsCarlist Wars
First Opium War
AwardsKnight Commander of the Order of the Bath

Early life

Phillimore was born on 24 May 1822 at Whitehall in Westminster, London the son of Joseph Phillimore later a professor of civil law at Oxford and his wife Elizabeth. He was educated at Westminster before joining the Royal Navy College at Portsmouth.

Phillimore joined the Royal Navy in 1835.[1] He served in the Carlist Wars and in the First Opium War.[2] Promoted Commander in 1852, he was given command of HMS Medea in 1853[1] and, promoted Captain in 1855, he commanded HMS Curacoa and then HMS Defence.[1]

He was appointed Senior officer Jamaica Division in 1868 and in charge of Jamaica Dockyard. Then Senior officer at Gibraltar in 1869 when he would have stayed in The Mount (Gibraltar). In 1871 he made the proposal that a new naval dockyard should be constructed in Gibraltar. Phillimore's scheme lied dormant in the Admiralty for 22 years before it was put to Parliament in 1895. The idea was to take five years and just under £1.5m pounds. In 1896 the scheme was further extended with the creation of new moles and three dry docks and a new budget of £4.5m pounds. The transformation was large and the government were still passing enabling legislation in 1905.[3] Today the docks are known as Gibdock.

Phillimore became Second-in-command of the Channel Squadron in January 1876 and Superintendent of the Royal Naval Reserve in November 1876.[1] Promoted Admiral in October 1884, he was made Commander-in-Chief, Plymouth in December 1884.[1] He retired in 1887.[1]


In 1864 he married Harriet Eleanor Fortescue;[1] they had three sons (including Captain Valentine Egerton Bagot Phillimore[4] and Admiral Sir Richard Phillimore) and one daughter.[5]

See also

  • O'Byrne, William Richard (1849). "Phillimore, Augustus" . A Naval Biographical Dictionary. John Murray via Wikisource.


  1. Wiliam Loney RN
  2. National Maritime Museum Archived 9 June 2011 at the Wayback Machine
  3. Finlayson, Darren Fa & Clive (2006). The fortifications of Gibraltar : 1068-1945 (1. publ. in Great Britain. ed.). Oxford [u.a.]: Osprey. p. 40. ISBN 9781846030161.
  4. "Captain Valentine Egerton Bagot Phillimore". Geni. Retrieved 23 April 2018.
  5. "Oxford Dictionary of National Biography". Archived from the original on 1 July 2012. Retrieved 21 August 2010.
Military offices
Preceded by
Sir William Stewart
Commander-in-Chief, Plymouth
Succeeded by
Lord John Hay
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