RN Autobiography 1958-1961
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Very Unable Seaman

A Junior Rating's experience in the Royal Navy 1958-1961

by Richard Barr

Very  Unable Seaman by Richard Barr: The small image is used elsewhere in my site as a link to this page

In this enjoyable memoir, Richard Barr recalls his experiences as an inept junior seaman serving aboard HMS Rampart the former Landing Craft Tank L4037 in 1958 - 1961.

This 1st.

edition published by Woodfield Publishing Ltd., ,Bognor Regis England in 2011.

Very  Unable Seaman by Richard Barr: Another small camera flash photograph intended to show the general appearance of this book.

ISBN: 1 84683 113 X


169 pages. 140 mm. x 205 mm. x 6 mm.
A glossy illustrated card covered paperback in FINE condition. No inscriptions. As New.

PRICE £8.00 incuding UK postage (Please email for overseas quote).

 Back cover blurb 

In this enjoyable memoir, Richard Barr (who went on to have a successful 28-year career in the Royal Navy) recalls his experiences as an inept junior seaman serving aboard HMS Rampart in the late 1950s. One of the Navy’s less glamorous vessels, Rampart, a former World War II LCT (Landing Craft Tank L4037), was home to a small but happy crew of colourful nautical characters, whose antics at sea and ashore are fondly remembered in this entertaining account.

A ‘cracking yarn’ in the best seafaring traditions, it is an affectionate portrayal of life on the Lower Deck as experienced by ordinary sailors in what is now a bygone era of the Royal Navy. In particular, the author recalls the camaraderie of his shipmates who, despite differences in age and experience and cramped living conditions, managed to get along well together.

Prepare to meet ‘Dolly’, the ship’s cook afflicted with chronic seasickness, ‘Mad Jock’, whose fondness for alcohol often leads to trouble and the testy old Coxswain, who dubbed the author “the most unable seaman it’s been my misfortune to encounter!”

Follow Rampart to France to scupper the D-Day Anniversary, to Norway for a double helping of Moose Stew and to the Isle of Wight to ruin the Cowes Regatta. Find out how the ship is accidentally painted salmon pink, how not to shoot balloons … and much more!

This page’s background is (as well as part of the cover of this book) adapted from the delightful cartoons on the free endpapers of the twelfth edition of Ward, Lock & Co.'s "The Wonder Book of the Navy" drawn by the illustrator Thomas Maybank.