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HMS India HMS India
First Name: William Last Name: COTTON
Date of Death: 08/08/1915 Lived/Born In: Silvertown
Rank: Fireman Unit: HMS India
Memorial Site: 1. Silvertown, Brick Lane Music Hall Memorial 2. Plymouth Naval Memorial

Current Information:

Age-26

37 Arthur Street, Silvertown

In 1915, the P&O passenger ship SS India was requisitioned by the Royal Navy and converted into an armed merchant cruiser. She joined the 10th Cruiser Squadron and in August 1915 she was on patrol off the Norwegian coast tasked with intercepting any ships carrying iron ore from Narvik to Germany. In the afternoon of 8th August, 1915 she was hit by a torpedo fired from the German submarine U.22 HMS India broke in two and sank within five minutes. The lifeboats on the starboard side could not be launched and over half of her crew of 300 men died. The rest were picked up and taken to Norway where most of them were interned for the rest of the war.

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