The Clyde has played a major part in warfare in the 20th century. Its most obvious contribution was as the main source of shipping which was supplied to the Royal Navy and the merchant navy. Many of its other stories are less familiar, not least the actual conflict that took place against German U-boats not far off the mainland. Alastair Alexander has dug deep into the war records, official collections and the museum archives to unearth a fascinating story of naval warfare on this great river and the west coast. Starting in 1914, he takes the reader through the First World War and the run up to the Second World War with detailed looks at the German U-boats that attempted to break the sea defences and sink British shipping. UC-27, UC-75, U-32, U-33 (sunk by HMS Gleaner in February 1940), U-218 are all detailed. He also list the losses to British shipping on the Clyde during both World Wars and gives a full account of HMS Gleaner's role in the U-33 incident. The Enigma decoding machine is also recalled and the special part that a salvage operation on a sunken German U-boat in the Clyde played in the role of that remarkable instrument.
HMS Hood, RMS Queen Elizabeth and Admiral Karl Donitz also feature in this highly illustrated contribution to wartime history. The accessible layout, the previously unpublished photographs and the newly revealed historical information make this an essential read for naval historians, students and teachers alike.