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Subsmash: The Mysterious Disappearance of HM Submarine Affray
 
 

Subsmash: The Mysterious Disappearance of HM Submarine Affray [Kindle Edition]

Alan Gallop
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (21 customer reviews)

Print List Price: £9.99
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Product Description

Product Description

Updated new edition. On April 16th, 2011, a group of widows and their families met together at the RN Submarine Museum, Gosport, to remember husbands, fathers, boyfriends and shipmates who died in the last British submarine to be lost at sea 60 years ago.  HM Affray, with a crew of 75, sailed from Gosport on April 16th 1951 on a special peacetime training exercise designed to teach inexperienced young officers the wartime skills needed if the country ever went to war again.  She dived under the English Channel at 21.15 hours and never resurfaced, triggering off the largest sea-air rescue operation ever mounted in Britain.  Two months later the submarine was found on the seabed miles away from where rescue parties had been searching.  She remains there today. In April 1951, the disappearance of HM submarine Affray knocked news of the Korean War and Festival of Britain from the front pages. Affray had put to sea on a routine peacetime simulated war patrol in the English Channel. She radioed her last position at 2115hrs on 16 April, 30 miles south of the Isle of Wight - preparing to dive. This was the last signal ever received from the submarine. After months of searching, divers eventually discovered Affray resting upright on the sea bottom with no obvious signs of damage to her hull. Hatches were closed tight and emergency buoys were still in their casings. It was obvious that whatever had caused Affray to sink, and had ended the lives of all those on board, had occurred quickly. Sixty years later, in this compelling maritime investigation, Alan Gallop uses previously top secret documents, interviews with experts and contemporary news sources to explore how and why Affray became the last British submarine lost at sea - and possibly the greatest maritime mystery since the Marie Celeste.

Synopsis

In April 1951, the disappearance of HM submarine Affray knocked news of the Korean War and Festival of Britain from the front pages of national newspapers. Affray had put to sea on a routine peacetime simulated war patrol in the English Channel. She radioed her last position at 21.15hrs on 16 April, 30 miles south of the Isle of Wight - and preparing to dive. This was the last signal ever received from the submarine. When divers eventually discovered Affray, they found her resting upright on the sea bottom with no obvious signs of damage to her hull. Hatches were closed tight and emergency buoys were still in their casings. It was obvious that whatever had caused Affray to sink and end the lives of all on board had occurred quickly. Fifty-six years later, in this compelling maritime investigation, Alan Gallop uses previously top secret documents, interviews with experts and contemporary news sources to explore how and why Affray became the last British submarine lost at sea. This is a fascinating recreation of the last mission of this doomed submarine, the effect it had on the families of those who perished, and on British public opinion at the time.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 449 KB
  • Print Length: 216 pages
  • Publisher: Spellmount (1 Mar 2011)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B0078XH9O2
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (21 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #161,440 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
16 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars What a good job 9 Mar 2009
By Mrs. Katharine Kirby TOP 100 REVIEWER VINE VOICE
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Alan Gallop has made an absolutely great job of this subject and I wish he would bring out a reprint later with all the responses he is bound to get from other people involved who would like to tell the story of their family's involvement with HM Submarine "Affray". The loss of every one of these men echoes down the years for those who were connected. My husband lost his half brother on board her and the name of Sub. Lt. Robin Preston RN, 21, is constantly remembered by his family. There was a plan for Robin and his friends to come to tea here at the family home on the Helford River, from Falmouth, when the Affray reached there. His family have a wealth of paperwork and memories, kept carefully through the last half century and more.
It is really impressive to read this careful and thorough book, we found it wonderfully accessible and even exciting - at last we can see the whole story presented in a truly interesting way. Thank you.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars more information on sinking 13 May 2012
By lindads
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
My father has often spoken of the breakfast he had with the crew of this submarine on the day it left docks never to return.

How some of the crew felt the ship was unsafe and that they wouldn't return, and of the following cover up and the crew member that was not on the ship as the had gone AWOL before the sub. left port. At this point I have not read the book but have purchased it for him for his birthday.

So why 5 stars!! To find an 80 year old, prolific reader, a book that will interest him.On a subject that brings him close to tears ever times he speaks of it, the book deserve each one of them.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
By Johnny
Format:Paperback
I have a particular interest in Submarines, as my late father worked, and served on them from HM Dockyard,during and after,the Second World War.
Excellent value book,and well written. All interesting.
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16 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Subsmash - the true story. 6 Feb 2009
Format:Hardcover
I bought this book as, in my youth, I was heavily involved in the search for H.M.Submarine 'Affray'

It is a meticulously researched and comprehensive account of the whole affair and its aftermath and will be of use to anyone interested in the history of subs.and the diving world, and the causes and investigations of disasters. And, even if you have only a passing interest, it is a good read.

As to my part (a few pages only), the author was unable to contact me, and was not certain whether I was still alive! He therefore, perforce, had to rely on contemporary newspaper accounts, which were no more accurate in those days than they are today! - You should not rely on ANYTHING you read in the papers! (Perhaps the date, with corroboration)

A second edition (unfortunately a paperback) is now available and has a more accurate account of my part, as I collaborated with the author.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A superb description of a tragic event 31 July 2013
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
As a submariner giving this book as a gift to another submariner it offers nostalgia, tragedy and disgust at how the next of kin were treated at the time, and over the years.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars very good factual account 12 Jun 2013
By Matt
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Interesting acount of a unique post war incident which looked at it from many angles and didnt descend into conspiracy theory etc. Respectful to those lost and affected by this incident
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars bureaucracy before justice 14 April 2013
By Aileen
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
well documented and controversial account of events before and after the disappearance of HMS. Affray a gripping narrative of events.
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5.0 out of 5 stars ship sinking 10 Sep 2014
Format:Hardcover
On the fateful day of 16 April 1951 the notice "subsmash"was issued as HMS Affray had not reported in.
It was 5 days before she was found many miles from her expected position and far cto late to rescue the 75 crew.
What chappened to the submarine? The general view wasetal fatigue to the snort mast to break with consequent flooding of the ship.
However cthe final chapter of this gripping story raises all the questions that should have been asked at the inquiry but were not and why no effort was made to raise the Affray.
A first class document and the author is to be congratulated.
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