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Review for Securing the Narrow |Seas. The Dover Patrol 1914-1918


Author : Steve R. Dunn

There is quite a story about efforts in World War One to control that narrow strip of sea which separates Britain from the continent. If not the whole story this book gives a very good impression of covering most of it. From the lowest ranks with 'ordinary men doing extraordinary things' to the damaging petty jealousies and rivalries at the top of the Admiralty. It covers the failures in understanding that sea warfare was changing, failure in ships not really designed to fulfill the tasks asked of them. It illuminates the superhuman efforts and devotion to duty shown by the middle and lower ranks when they were asked to compensate for strategic inadequacies. The ships ranged from drifters taken in from the fishing fleet to monitors fitted with 15 inch guns. The tasks ranged from patrolling the anti-submarine boom, to bombarding enemy troops in Flanders, to the attacks on Zeebrugge and Ostend. Personal stories abound as in the sinking of H M S Sanda taking with it the oldest serving officer at sixty-seven and a signal boy of fifteen. In another incident on the death of a sailor he was found to have two wives, a problem for the pay-office!
The book is well written, thoroughly researched, well illustrated. While reading this book I occasional put it down because I was enjoying it so much I didn't want it end. It really is that good.

Published by : Seaforth Publishing. Pen and Sword Books Ltd., 2017
ISBN : 978 1 84832 249 3

Review last updated : 2017-04-25 18:46:40


See also : other "World War 1" reviews