Churchill's Thin Grey Line

British Merchant Ships at War 1939–1945

Bernard Edwards

Date Published :
March 2018
Publisher :
Pen and Sword
Illustration :
Black and white illustrations
Format Available    QuantityPrice
ISBN : 9781526711663
Pages : 248
Dimensions : 9 X 6 inches
In stock


 The first British casualties of the Second World War were not members of either the Royal Navy, the Army or the Royal Air Force but British merchant seamen on the liner Athenia, torpedoed by U-30 on 3 September 1939.    For the duration of the War Britain’s merchant fleet performed a vital role, carrying the essential supplies that kept the country running during the darkest days and then made victory possible. Their achievements came at a terrible cost with 2,535 British oceangoing merchant ships being sunk and, of the 185,000 men and women serving in the British Merchant Navy at the time, 36,749 sacrificed their lives. A further 4,707 were wounded and 5,720 ended up in prisoner of war camps. Their casualty rate of 25 percent was second only to RAF Bomber Command’s.   Using casebook examples, this well researched book tells the inspiring story of those brave civilian volunteers who fought so gallantly to defend their ships and the cargoes.

About The Author

Bernard Edwards pursued a sea-going career commanding ships trading worldwide. After nearly forty years afloat. Captain Edwards settled in a tiny village in rural South Wales, to pursue his second career as a writer. His extensive knowledge of the sea and ships has enabled him to produce many authentic and eminently readable books which have received international recognition. Beware Raiders!, Attack and Sink!, The Cruel Sea Retold, The Quiet Heroes, Twilight of the U-Boats, Death in the Doldrums, The Road to Russia, The Wolf Packs Gather, The Decoys and U-boats Beyond Biscay have been published by Pen and Sword Books.

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