EDP: "Norfolk Sea Lords Who Took The Navy Into A New Era"


"As the 20th century dawned, Britain’s senior maritime figures were increasingly aware of the limitations of the Royal Navy.

For Britain to remain a leading sea power and continue Nelson’s legacy, the Royal Navy had to adapt and change: new ships, a switch from steam to oil burning vessels, more advanced techniques and a new generation of warships was desperately needed.

There was, however, little consensus on the course the new Royal Navy should plot and it would take strong characters to stand up to the traditionalists at the Admiralty to steer through those changes and ensure the fleet was ready to match the sea-power of nations such as Germany.

It fell to Norfolk’s two, and only First Sea Lords - who coincidentally followed one another as the most powerful mariners in the land – to do that, with both making significant contributions to the Royal Navy, ensuring that it was better placed to meet the demands of 20th century warfare.

First Sea Lord John “Jacky” Fisher of Kilverstone (1841-1920) drove through major reform and introduced the fearsome Dreadnought battleship, while Admiral Sir Arthur Knyvet Wilson (1842-1921) pioneered the advancement of torpedo warfare."

Video: Part three of the EDP series focusing on Norfolk sea lords who took navy into a new era - Norfolk life - Eastern Daily Press

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