Charles Laverock Lambe

Charles Laverock Lambe

Air Vice Marshal Sir Charles Laverock Lambe KCB, CMG, DSO, RAF was born on 10 May 1875. He joined the Royal Navy in (or around) 1891 and following a distinguished career, he transferred to the Royal Air Force on its creation in 1918. Lambe was one of the most senior officers with naval experience to serve in the 1920s RAF.

Joining the Royal Navy in or before 1891, Lambe attended the Britannia Naval College. In 1897 he was promoted to lieutenant and served aboard HMS Magpie, taking part in Rear Admiral Rawson's punitive expedition to Benin. Lambe later served at the Naval Ordnance Department. He gained a promotion to commander in 1908 and was appointed Assistant of Director of Naval Ordnance and Torpedoes in 1913.

In August 1914, Lambe took up the post of Officer Commanding the seaplane carrier HMS Hermes, which was sunk after being torpedoed in October of the same year. At the start of August 1916, having just been promoted to Wing Captain, Lambe took up appointment as the Officer Commanding the Royal Naval Air Service's Dover Command which included RNAS units at Dunkirk. During his time at the Dover Command, Lambe's aircraft carried out bombing raids on the German submarine harbours at Bruges. On 1 April 1918, Lambe was appointed General Officer Commanding the VII Brigade of the RAF. On 23 April, Lambe's VII Brigade carried out air attacks as part of the blocking of Zeebrugge and Ostend. On 9 May, Lambe was once again the air commander in a naval action, this time for the Second Ostend Raid.

In 1919 Lambe was selected by Sir Hugh Trenchard to sit on the Air Council and in 1924 he was appointed commandant of the RAF’s No. 1 School of Technical Training. In 1928 Lambe was appointed Air Officer Commanding Coastal Area (the forerunner of Coastal Command) from where he retired in the rank of Air Vice Marshal in 1931. Charles Laverock Lambe died on 25 April 1953.

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