Ebb Tide in the British Maritime Industries: Change and Adaptation, 1918-1990

Ebb Tide in the British Maritime Industries: Change and Adaptation, 1918-1990

by Alan G. Jamieson
     
 

This book examines how the principal British maritime industries - shipping, shipbuilding and ports - adapted, or failed to adapt, to a changing world in the period 1918 to 1990, and discusses their reactions to the great opportunities seemingly offered by offshore oil and gas from the mid-1960s. At the outbreak of World War I, Britain's maritime industries still

Overview

This book examines how the principal British maritime industries - shipping, shipbuilding and ports - adapted, or failed to adapt, to a changing world in the period 1918 to 1990, and discusses their reactions to the great opportunities seemingly offered by offshore oil and gas from the mid-1960s. At the outbreak of World War I, Britain's maritime industries still dominated the world. The British merchant fleet was by far the largest in the world, the nation's shipbuilding output eclipsed all rivals, and British ports were busy and expanding. By 1990, British shipping was a shadow of its former self, shipbuilding seemed on the verge of total collapse, and although the ports had been modernised, trade was concentrated at only a few of them. For almost four centuries, these industries had been of vital importance to Britain's wealth and power, but by 1990, politicians scarcely gave them a second thought.

Editorial Reviews

Dr. Lewis Johnman

“This is a significant and original contribution to the field of maritime history.  There have been a welter of single industry studies and company histories—many of excellent quality—but there is no work which draws all of these elements together.  This is a serious, synthesised account of how and why Britain lost its position as the world’s leading maritime power.” –Dr. Lewis Johnman, University of Westminster and co-author with Hugh Murphy of British Shipbuilding and the State Since 1918 (University of Exeter Press, 2002)

Gordon Jackson

“The book covers ground which lacks serious analytical discussion at this length.  Jamieson explores the reasons for Britain’s maritime collapse after 1918 . . . it should be welcomed by those still involved with the industries concerned, and in the governments which played such an important role in this decline after 1918—chiefly by doing nothing!” –Professor Gordon Jackson, University of Strathclyde

From the Publisher
"While many might take issue with his somewhat fatalistic conclusions, there is no doubt that Mr Jamieson has produced a very readable and fact-rich account of the decline of British maritime power and it provides a stimulating and challenging overview of the demise of Britannia's rule."—Telegraph Journal of Numast

"The book is recommended to all who seek authoritative facts and reasoning on its subject. They will go far to find a better survey."—The Naval Review

"This book is a rare animal, namely a broad work of synthesis. Maritime history as a sub-discipline is strong on highly-specialist and tightly-focussed research, rather less so on this kind of work: we need more of it. Jamieson has done a good job in 'zooming out' here ... while established specialists in the field will no doubt regard it as a useful and interesting work, those looking for a broader coverage will find, as I did, that this is a splendid 'one-stop-shop', saving them several inches of bookshelf space ... I commend it to everyone except nostalgic Brits with suppressed suicidal tendencies."—The Northern Mariner XIII

"... the text is supported by a good index, an extensive and up-to-date bibiliography and reference to wide-ranging primary sources. The production standards are high, although this reader would prefer footnotes to endnotes, and the cover price is reasonable."—International Journal of Maritime History

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780859897280
Publisher:
Liverpool University Press
Publication date:
04/28/2003
Series:
University of Exeter Press - Exeter Maritime Studies
Pages:
320
Product dimensions:
9.30(w) x 6.40(h) x 0.70(d)

Meet the Author

Alan G. Jamieson is Leverhulme Research Fellow in British Maritime History in the Centre for Maritime Historical Studies, University of Exeter.

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