The Sinking of the R.M.S. Leinster

People on board

Walter Theodore Bagot

BAGOT, Walter Theodore

Walter Theodore Bagot was born in Brentford, Middlesex in 1885 to Walter Bagot and Wilhelmina Bernardine Bosch. Walter Bagot, born in Ireland, had been married there, but after his wife died in 1878 he remarried in 1881 in London. Wilhelmina was then aged twenty-two and Walter forty-eight, and her address was Bremen, Germany. Walter Theodore was born in 1885 followed by Kathleen in 1890 and the family were living in Chiswick in the 1901 census. Walter died in 1893 and Wilhelmina spent the rest of her life between England and Germany, dying in Germany in 1920.

In the 1901 census Walter Theodore was a sixteen year old naval cadet, boarding in London. He was made Sub-Lieutenant in 1904 and full Lieutenant in 1907. His naval records show that he was regarded as competent and organized, though not very strong, physically, with defective eyesight. His speciality was as a German interpreter and he had also some French and Dutch. He was promoted Lieutenant Commander in February 1915 and Acting Commander in 1918 when he was appointed as Base Intelligence Officer in Kingstown.

In the meantime Walter, while based in Portsmouth, had married Lilian Crosland in January 1915 in Scarborough, her home town. They do not appear to have had any children. It is not known if Acting Commander Bagot was on naval business or travelling on leave on the 10th of October 1918.

After the  torpedo struck RMS Leinster he found a place in the large lifeboat, nicknamed ‘Big Bertha’, along with some crew members amongst others. This was the lifeboat that picked up the seriously injured Captain Birch, after he had been flung into the water from the deck. When eventually they were approached by the destroyer H.M.S. Lively the lifeboat keeled over because of the rush to get off. Captain Birch was lost at this stage but Walter Bagot was rescued.

After the war Lieutenant Commander Walter Bagot was employed as District Intelligence Officer in Rosyth and he retired in 1928 with the rank of Commander. In the 1939 Register he and Lilian were living in a hotel in Scarborough. He died in Scarborough in 1969 at the age of eighty-four.


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