Honour - Sole Bay 1672

Date - 28-May
Type - Fleet or Squadron Actions
Conflict - Third Dutch War; 1672-74 

Description The battle was fought between a combined Anglo-French Fleet and a Dutch Fleet, off Sole Bay, Suffolk.

Sole Bay was a large curved bay where the allied fleet was at anchor, provisioning for a planned invasion of the Netherlands.

The Dutch fleet under Admiral De Ruyter discovered the allied fleet and attacked with his fleet plus fireships.

The French Admiral D'Estrees with the allied van moved off to the south-east, followed by about 20 Dutch ships under Banckerts. They fought their own battle and took m=no part in the main action.

The remainder of the allied fleet cut their cables and moved off to the north. Where they were engaged by the main Dutch fleet.

The battle was fiercely fought and by evening the allies disengaged and the Dutch withdrew to the Maas.

English losses were four ships and about 2,500 men.

The Dutch lost two ships plus one which blew up during the night.

The English Fleet was disabled for a month and with command of the Channel in Dutch hands the invasion was cancelled.


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This page last edited - 08 November, 2012.

Copyright Ian M King, except where otherwise indicated.