Monday, 15 February 2016

More books to read!

On Saturday morning I paid yet another of my irregular visits to Falconwood Transport and Military Bookshop (5 Falconwood Parade, The Green, Welling, Kent, DA16 2PL) ... and managed to find a couple of 'must haves' to add to my collection of naval books.

The first was J. SAMUEL WHITE & CO. SHIPBUILDERS by David L Williams and Richard de Kerbrech (Published in 2012 by The History Press [ISBN 978 0 7524 6612 5]).

J Samuel White & Company built a total of 252 ships for the Royal Navy as well as numerous vessels for other customers. They were based on the Isle of Wight and were regarded as specialists when it came to the building of fast ships, especially destroyers. They also built aircraft and were pioneers in the development of semi-diesel engines, heat exchangers, air conditioners, and compressors.

The second book was a real indulgence as it was the second edition of a book that I already own. I bought my original copy of BIG GUN MONITORS: THE HISTORY OF THE DESIGN, CONSTRUCTION AND OPERATION OF THE ROYAL NAVY'S MONITORS by Ian Buxton when it was first published in 1978.

A second revised and expanded edition was published by Seaforth Publishing in 2008 (ISBN 978 1 84415 719 8), and when I saw a copy for sale at half the original published price, I just had to have it.

This new edition has a revised layout and many more photographs, which is my excuse for buying it!


  1. Well, blow me down. I was there on Thursday after reading about the shop in one of your posts last year.
    I managed to find a hardback of Hibberts' American wars of Independence and three other books at a reasonable price.
    I lived in Welling from '56 to '64 and The Green was the scene of many of my escapades as a child.

  2. Nobby,

    What a coincidence! I live near the top of Shooters Hill and taught at both Woolwich Polytechnic Boys School (1975-86) and Crown Woods School (1991-2001).

    I try to limit my visits to The Green in Falconwood otherwise my house would be as full as the shop! Sounds like your visit was as productive as mine was. A couple of years ago I was visiting the shop at the same time as Jools Holland. I was looking for military books and he seemed to be browsing the car section. (He had arrived in a battleship grey reproduction of a Le Mans Jaguar.)

    All the best,


  3. Hi Bob,

    The monitor title looks very interesting indeed and is certainly one I shall keep a weather eye open for.

    All the best,


  4. David Crook,

    It is well worth buying if you see a copy. Knowing your particular areas of interest, the sections that deal with the requisitioned Brazilian river monitors, operations in the Eastern Mediterranean, and the smaller monitors would be well worth reading.

    All the best,



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