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READY FOR ANYTHING: THE ROYAL FLEET AUXILIARY FROM 1905 TO 1950


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Set up in August 1905, the Royal Fleet Auxiliary – unofficial motto: Ready for Anything – was originally a logistic support organisation, Admiralty-owned but run on civilian lines, comprising a miscellaneous and very unglamorous collection of colliers, store ships and harbour craft. This book charts its rise in fleet strength, capability and importance, through two world wars and a technical revolution, until the time when naval operations became simply impossible without it. Its earliest tasks were mainly freighting – supplying the Royal Navy’s worldwide network of bases – but in wartime fleets were required to spend much longer at sea and the RFA had to develop techniques of underway replenishment. This did not come to full fruition until the British Pacific Fleet operated alongside the Americans in 1944-45, but by then the RFA had already pioneered many of the procedures involved. 
This book combines a history of the service, including many little-known wartime operations, with data on the ships, and a portrait of life in the service gleaned from personal accounts and recollections. Half way between a civilian and a military service, the RFA has never received the attention it deserves, but this book throws a long-overdue spotlight on its achievements.

  • AUTHOR: Puddefoot, G
  • FORMAT: 256pp 36 Bw 234x156 Hb
  • Code: 20100

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