Champness, Eric Treeve

From Battle of Jutland Crew Lists Project
Photo source:UK Photo And Social History Archive

Bendigonian (Bendigo, Vic. : 1914 - 1918), Thursday 22 June 1916, page 2

ENGINEER-LIEUT. ERIC
CHAMPNESS.
--
Of H.M.S. Queen Mary.
INTERESTING LETTER.
Amongst the officers who were on the ill-
fated Queen Mary in the great naval fight
was Engineer Lieutenant Eric Champness,
who was well-known to travellers on the
Australian line of Orient steamers. When
the war broke out Engineer Lieutenant
Champness was an officer of the R.M.S.
Orsova, and on returning to England joined
the Queen Mary. Engineer Lieutenant
Champness is a personal friend of Miss
Mylie Egan, and since Miss Egan, returned
from London she has received several let-
ters from him relating his experiences on
the battle cruiser. Describing the Queen
Mary, Engineer Lieutenant Champness
states:-"She is one of our latest, and
more than twice the displacement of the
Orsova. Before going on the Queen Mary
I completed a special course of training at
Southsea. I have a cabin to myself, and
everything is most comfortable on the great
cruiser. Things are quite different to the
Orsova, as after dinner it is no use to go
up on deck to chat with passengers, as you
only find guns and other useful things in
warfare. When at sea a sharp lookout is
kept night and day. Occasionally portion
of the crew go ashore, and with the band
they have a march in the country to keep
them fit. On Sundays church services are
attended by all not on duty. There are
some 50 officers, including captain, three
commanders, four lieutenant commanders,
three doctors, four paymasters, one parson,
about eight lieutenants, and six sub-lieuten-
ants, all having various duties, torpedo
gunnery, navigation, engineering, etc. The
engineering officers are Engineer Comman-
der, Lieuteant Commander, Lieutenant,
Sub-Lieutenant and mate. In addition,
there are 50 engine room artificers and war-
rant officers, and 500 stokers. I often wish
Australia was not such a long way off; you
know, 13,000 miles is really a long way. I
do not know quite what I shall do at the
end of the war if I am alive. There may
be a chance of staying on in the Navy, or
if not I shall be able to get that appoint-
ment as an engineer and ship surveyor at
Lloyds, for which I qualified." Engineer
Lieutenant Champness states that the offi-
cers and crew are honorary members of all
the golf clubs adjacent to the naval bases,
and when they land indulge in a game to
keep themselves fit. Engineer Lieutenant
Champness is a son of a large manufacturer
in London. While in the service of the
Orient Company, he made many friends in
Australia.


  1. HMS Queen Mary Crew List (Photographs)
  2. HMS Queen Mary Crew List (updated in Real-time)