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The Indomitable Beatie: Charles Hoare, C. B. Fry and the Captain's Lady Hardcover – 18 Mar 2004


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Product details

  • Hardcover: 171 pages
  • Publisher: Sutton Publishing (18 Mar. 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0750937106
  • ISBN-13: 978-0750937108
  • Product Dimensions: 17 x 1 x 24 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 740,201 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

About the Author

Ronald Morris was born in 1930 and served on the Mercury from 1939-1945. He was later in the Merchant Navy, then a schoolteacher.

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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Moorsman on 15 Jan. 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
It rivals Jimmy Savile as a British scandal which for decades took place semi-publicly, yet somehow got denied. The `Training Ship Mercury' advertised boarding school education and a "scientific system of character training". Schoolboys chose it and their parents paid the training fees because supposedly in charge was `Commander' C.B. Fry, the ultimate all-rounder sports hero of Edwardian Britain. British Royalty repeatedly visited and awarded honours. In truth, once boys arrived, they were shaved like convicts and subjected to a relentless regime of terror, exhaustion and pain. Ferocious public floggings followed the slightest mistake - or just the arbitrary whim of management. Boys went barefoot in all weather and had to swim in freezing water at night. Some died during `training'. All sorts of harassment routines were devised - deliberately unfair boxing matches, for instance, of the most brutal sort.

This book's author was actually a pupil on the ship, but the book covers very much more than simple description of its cruelties. It's an exploration of how such a school ship from hell could ever come into being - and it's a very strange tale indeed. The book details an earlier Victorian scandal about a wealthy married banker and his under-age mistress and how they dodge prison and trick and bribe their way to stay together. Socially ostracised, they set up this training ship as an enclave where they can forge a new life and redeem their reputations - and raise their growing family discreetly. A glitzy official husband, the famous athlete C.B. Fry, is bought to front the family (amateur sportsmen needed funding somehow!). The ship's regime starts off benign but heads towards hell once the banker dies.
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By Mr. C. J. Harmer on 3 April 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
A fascinating and under-rated glimpse into upper stratum late Victorian society - just amazing! It should be made into a film.
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