According to The Times correspondent present, at 3.15 p.m. on the 15th February 1897, a launch from H. M. S. Revenge, the flagship of the British Mediterranean Fleet, entered Canea harbour in the charge of Lieutenant Nelson and Sub-Lieutenants Addison and Hunt, landing a detachment of marines who then drew up upon the quay. They were met by British consul Sir Alfred Biliotti and Vice-Consul Cassimati, as well as Major Bor, British Commander of the ‘new’ Gendarmerie and Lieutenant Colonel Herbert Chermside; the latter on the island since 1896 in his capacity as a member of the Gendarmerie Commission, the Concert-lead Commission for the reorganization of the gendarmerie. Launches from H. M. S. Rodney and H. M. S. Barfleur followed shortly afterwards as did French landing parties; boats from the Austro-Hungarian, Russian and Italian ships arriving later.
The wording below the illustration, from the Graphic of 6th March 1897, reads:
With the consent of the Turkish authorities Canea was occupied by detachments from the foreign warships, consisting of 100 British, 100 Russians, 100 French, 100 Italians, and 50 Austrians. The British detachment coming from Revenge, Rodney and Barfleur landed first. Shortly afterwards the French landing parties arrived and they were followed by the Austrians, Russians and Italians.
Taken, again, from The Graphic, the illustration’s title reads;
‘The occupation of Canea by the Great Powers: British Marines on their way to quarters.’
There is no record as to whether or not the Marines went commando.