ISBN: 0905778308 / ISBN-13: 9780905778303
The Royal Navy: An Illustrated Social History, 1870-1982
by John Wells
The story of the Royal Navy is as much the story of characters like Tommy Freedie and his colleagues as it is the story of the events and conflicts ... Show synopsis The story of the Royal Navy is as much the story of characters like Tommy Freedie and his colleagues as it is the story of the events and conflicts in which they were caught up. From 1870 to 1982 the lives of the men and women employed by the Navy have been affected by more critical events and unforeseen changes than in any comparable period. This book is the first attempt to record the social history of the royal Navy during this time of transformation, covering everything from recruitment and training to behaviour in battle, discipline, food and drink, pay and clothing. Starting with the imperial splendour of Queen Victoria's ships, with their labour-intensive crews, social divisions and harsh discipline, and concluding with the professional fighting force that saw service in what many regard as the last gasp of empire, in the Falklands in 1982, the book describes how the Navy has reflected the social attitudes of the day in the character and behaviour of its people. Illustrated throughout with many rare archive photographs, this unique study will appeal not only to those connected with the royal Navy but also to historians of Britain's social and maritime past and to anyone wanting to learn more about the inner life of the Royal Navy.