FLEET REVIEW 1937 THE CORONATION REVIEW OF KING GEORGE VI
(MP195). Frank Watson Wood (1862-1953). Watercolour heightened with white, dated "20th May 1937", signed "Frank W Wood" (LR) and inscribed "Spithead, 20th May 1937, Coronation Naval Review" (LL); and "ADMIRAL GRAF SPEE [sic]" beneath the pocket battleship (LR)..
Limited edition: 12 copies worldwide
Standard size: 29 x 14.5 ins (74 x 36 cms) approx.
Price band (mounted/matted): £140 - £155
Frank Watson Wood was clearly a very busy artist over this period of the two fleet reviews which occurred within 22 short months of each other, 1935 and 1937! Here he has painted the scene looking north-east as HM The King in the Royal Yacht VICTORIA & ALBERT (Rear Admiral Sir Dudley North) led by THV PATRICIA, glides south east with Foreign Warships (as described on the Admiralty Review Chart published 1st May 1937) to starboard in Line G (with Germany’s GRAF SPEE, over for her second British Fleet Review in two years at the bottom right of the painting), and Line F, the Home Fleet flagship’s line, to port.
Manning and Cheering Ship as the Royal Yacht passed down the line were, on her port side and with her stern showing, HMS RESOLUTION (Captain Sir Lionel Sturdee Bt ADC RN). Then abeam of the Yacht is HMS RAMILLIES (Captain R W Oldham RN) and astern of her HMS ROYAL OAK (Captain T B Drew OBE RN) wearing the flag of Rear Admiral C G Ramsay CB, Rear Admiral 2nd Battle Squadron; HMS RODNEY (Captain W N Custance RN) and at the head of the line, far right, HMS NELSON (Captain A R Dewar RN) wearing the flag of the Commander-in-Chief Home Fleet, Admiral Sir Roger Backhouse GCVO KCB CMG. Visible behind the bulk of RAMILLIES are three ships of Line E, HMS REVENGE (Captain F A Buckley RN), then HMS BARHAM (Captain N A Wodehouse ADC RN) with the flag of Rear Admiral T H Binney CB DSO, Rear Admiral Commanding 1st Battle Squadron Mediterranean Fleet; and finally, at the head of the line, HMS QUEEN ELIZABETH (Captain E L S King MVO RN) flagship of the Commander-in-Chief Mediterranean Fleet, Admiral Sir Dudley Pound GCVO KCB. Line D ships seen beyond are, from left to right, the heavy cruisers HMS SHROPSHIRE (Captain W E C Tait MVO RN) and HMS LONDON (Captain H Pott MVO RN) wearing the flag of Rear Admiral C E Kennedy-Purvis CB, Rear Admiral Commanding 1st Cruiser Squadron, Mediterranean Fleet.
This painting is a pair to MP045 and is of the same event as MP044, MP046 and MP137: Frank Wood was indeed a busy man over this period!