Saturday, August 29, 2009

REBUILDING THE ROYAL NAVY Warship Design since 1945

By DK Brown & George Moore
Naval Institute Press 2004
ISBN 1591147050
This fourth and final volume in this series on Royal Navy warship development presents an in-depth and lucid account of British warship construction in the challenging half-century since World War II. 
After considering the wartime legacy and lingering austerity, the authors cover some of the ambitious ideas for the bigger ships like the reconstruction of the carrier Victorious, and the conversion of fleet destroyers into anti-submarine frigates. But most of the book is devoted to new construction, with chapters on all the major categories and new information on designs that remained on the drawing board. It concludes with a survey of the most significant technological innovations and an analysis of the impact of the Falklands War. DK. Brown’s personal knowledge and experience and George Moore’s in-depth research on declassified material add up to a crowning finale to an internationally acclaimed series.This book will be of interest to those interested in both naval history and technology. The plethora of photographs alone make this work good value for money.
Mr Brown, a member of the Royal Corps of Naval Constructors, was involved in almost all Royal Navy ship programs over the past few decades. 
Two never built designs heretofore not known by this writer were the Utility Minehunter which bears a marked similarity to the Canadian Maritime Coastal Defense Vessel and the planned HMS Terra Nova, an icebreaker/survey ship. The latter was deemed to expensive in 1967 so the mercantile Anita Dan was purchased and became HMS Endurance.
The writers are quite objective, giving both the good and the not so good credible coverage. 
We can hope that these two gentlemen collaborate again in the not too distant future.

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