Admiral Sir Erasmus Gower (1742-1814)

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Vincent, Captain Sir Richard Budd CB RN (c.1770-1831).

Saw his first action at the relief of Gibraltar in 1782. Served under Gower as a midshipman in HMS Salisbury in Newfoundland for three years (1786-1788). In 1790 he was made lieutenant and went into the anti-smuggling sloop HMS Wasp until the outbreak of war (1793) when he joined HMS Terrible, (74). After some colourful exploits in HMS Terrible (Captain Lutwidge), and then HMS Triumph, (74) (Captain Gower), he transferred into HMS Zealand, (74), flagship of his friend Admiral Lutwidge, thereby missing the battle of Camperdown. While first lieutenant in Triumph under Gower's command he showed himself to be an astute and knowledgeable seaman. He was promoted commander in April 1802 and on 17th May the same year he was given the sloop Arrow, (28). After a prolonged period in the Mediterranean, Captain Richard Budd Vincent sacrificed his ship in 1805, in a contest where he was certain to be overpowered, to gain sufficient time for most of his merchant ships to escape. HMS Arrow, ably supported by Captain Arthur Farquhar, in the Acheron bomb, (8), engaged two large French frigates, mounting 90 guns and 1300 men, while the English force was only 36 guns and 190 men. The damage and delay caused to the enemy by this spirited resistance, lasting more than a day, enabled the convoy to disperse, and all but three out of thirty-two got off. The English ships did not strike till they were so much cut up that one sank immediately afterwards, and the other was burned by the captors as useless. Subsequently court-martialled, Vincent was not only exonerated but promoted to post captain for his bravery during the unequal fight. He was also presented with a £100 sword from the Patriotic Fund and a piece of plate for his efforts to protect his convoy.

Sent back to the Mediterannean to take command of HMS Hind,(28), he was soon after pressured into filling the vacancy of flag captain to Governor and Port Admiral Sir Alexander Ball in HMS Trident, (74). After the death of Admiral Ball in October 1809, Vincent subsequently served as flag captain to three of Gower's close friends, rear-admirals Charles Boyles, John Laugharne and Charles Penrose, until the end of the war in 1814.

In 1815 he was made a Companion of the Order of the Bath (C.B.) just before his last ship, HMS Aquilon, (32) was paid off in April 1816. Described by officers of HMS Arrow as 'a most pleasant, mild, gentleman-like Commander, yet at the same time a strict officer; one of the ablest in the British Navy', Captain Vincent died in 1831.