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British 63rd (Royal Naval) Division

List of military divisionsList of British divisions in WWI

Insignia: ?
63rd (Royal Naval) Division
ArmyNew Army
FormedSeptember 1914
DemobilisedApril 1919

The British 63rd (Royal Naval) Division was a World War I division of the New Army. Formed at the outbreak of war as the Royal Naval Division from the surplus reserves of the Royal Navy that could not be placed on a ship, the division participated in the defence of the Belgian city of Antwerp in late 1914. The division was shipped to Egypt prior to serving in the Battle of Gallipoli where it fought on both the Anzac and Helles battlefields. By the end of the Dardanelles campaign, the division's casualties were such that it no longer contained a significant number of naval servicemen and so in July 1916 it was redesignated as the 63rd Division when the original 63rd (2nd Northumbrian) Division was disbanded. The division moved to the Western Front in France for the remainder of the war.

Table of contents
1 Formation
2 Unit History
3 Battles
4 External Links


Originally the division contained 12 battalions arranged in three brigades. Some of the battalions were named after famous British naval commanders, others were named after British ports.

Due to the changing nature of the unit, it was made up of a number of brigades during the war.

; 1st Royal Naval Brigade : Also known as 1st (Royal Naval) Brigade, 1st Brigade (1914 - July 1916). Replaced by the 190th Brigade (July 1916). ; 2nd Royal Naval Brigade : Also known as 2nd (Royal Naval) Brigade, 2nd Brigade, 189th Brigade. ; Royal Marine Brigade : Also known as 3rd (Royal Marine) Brigade, 188th Brigade.

As the naval character of the division diminished, more regular infantry battalions were included. Other battalions that served with the division include:

Unit History

Defence of Antwerp.

Gallipoli. Diversion at Bulair. Reinforcing Anzac. Move to Helles.



External Links

The British Army in the Great War: The 63rd (Royal Naval) Division