Captain Charles Algernon Fryatt
Person Male Born 2/12/1871 Died 27/7/1916
Master mariner. Born Southampton. From Hellfire Corner : Captain of the Great Eastern Railway Company's steamer Brussels, he in utter defiance of the Germans continued to work the Rotterdam-British East Coast route after war was declared. On two occasions in March 1915, though, The Brussels was attacked by U-Boats. The second attempt to sink the vessel seeing Captain Fryatt steer his ship towards the surfaced and torpedo-aiming-submarine forcing it to dive. 'You could have easily hung your hat on the periscope as she lay along side us', he later recalled. But on 23rd June 1916 a German patrol stopped The Brussels and its twice honoured (once by the GERC, once by the Admiralty) Master was taken first to Zeebrugge then on to Brugge where he was tried on 27th July for attempting to ram the U-Boat over a year previous. Although strongly denied by Captain Fryatt and the British Government - 'he was simply trying to avoid an attack and was only interested in saving the lives of his passengers and crew '- he was non-the-less found guilty and subsequently executed.