"Call the Hands - A Collection of Naval Yarns"

To add, a guy i work with is very close to releasing his "version of events" of his time in service. Titled "Laughing Kitbags (The stories of a living legend)"

To quote,

"Ian Ditch, from Doxford Park, decided to write Laughing Kitbags after friends urged him put down his experiences of life in the Armed Forces in a book.

Seven years in the making, it is a collection of the colourful stories and antics of the author and his comrades in the early stages of their military careers.

The dad-of-three joined the Navy after leaving Farringdon School in 1978. Working as an engineer in the Fleet Air Arm, he went on to serve in Lebanon, Bosnia, Northern Ireland and the first Gulf War before leaving in 2002.

"On leaving the service, so many people said I should write a book on the funnier times I experienced during my career," said the 49-year-old. "It covers the 1970s and 1980s and the 'work hard, play harder' approach we often took to life in the Navy. A lot of the stories are quite adult, the practical jokes and our exploits, but it's all in good fun."

While writing the book, Mr Ditch said he was given a great deal of support from friends, family and publishers.

The response I have had so far has been fantastic as I have been informing people on Facebook," said Mr Ditch.

"The Navy News are doing a bit in their paper, which distributes 300,000 copies per month.

"Waterstone's flagship bookstore in Gower Street, London, are launching the book and it will be available in stores countrywide.

"I have also contacted a national newspaper, which hopefully will publish an article. As it sponsors the Forces' charity Help For Heroes, which I intend to make a donation to for every single copy of the book sold, they are very keen."

There's a facebook page too.Search for the title "Laughing Kitbags (The stories of a living legend)"

I remember "George" Ditch from Yeovilton, although not a friend of mine he and his oppos were well known throughout Yeovilton and the surrounding area. This book will have some real gems in it, I assure you from the stories I heard (and verified by my mates) once you read this book it will bring back some of your own memories of similar goings on and some you will say "how did they do that" :oops: Well done George
I "spoke" to Ian/George a few days ago about his new book, as an article about it was in my press selection for the day.

I told him that I would write about it on Rum Ration; I'll do a thread on it very soon.


Lantern Swinger
I read this a couple of weeks ago and thought I'd bump this thread rather than start a new one.

To be honest, whether or not you'd enjoy it depends on what you're looking for. It's essentially a collection of light-hearted stories, with no sustained drama, truly hairy moments or opportunities to learn much from the events. If you're looking to be shocked and inspired, it's not that sort of book. If you're looking for some true stories that involve the RN you won't be disappointed.

It's also quite short, I went through it in a single evening. I had hoped it would contain more detail on what life in the RN was like, but it seemed a little muted and dumbed-down.

Other than that, it's well written and moderately engaging throughout. I'd recommend it, but with reservations. For what it's worth, I leant my copy to a friend who has no military experience or aspirations and she thought it was fantastic. Essentially, I think it's been edited/marketed to a different audience than I'm in, especially after having read some of the stories on here and ARRSE.
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