The Mariner's Mirror Podcast


Fishermen Vs U-Boats

During the First and Second World Wars British fishing trawlers were turned into the Royal Naval Patrol Reserve to help clear the seas of mines and even take on the deadly U-Boats. They became known as 'Harry Tate’s Navy' - a nod towards the celebrity comedian known for his bungling of everyday tasks and slipshod approach to life. Taking this wry criticism on the chin the fishermen-turned naval personnel embraced it and Harry Tate's Navy became a byword for exceptional resource fullness and courage in the face of appalling difficulty and danger. To find out more Dr Sam Willis spoke with the historian and journalist Rose George who is currently working on a major new study of the history of the fishing industry.


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