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U-boats vs Destroyer Escorts – The Battle of the Atlantic

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Author: Gordon Williamson
Publication Date: 3 Oct 2007
Number of Pages: 80

Winston Churchill claimed the ‘U-boat peril’ was the only thing that frightened him during World War II. The U-boat was developed from a small coastal vessel into a state-of-the-art killer, stalking the high seas picking off merchant convoys, until the introduction of the destroyer escort, and the development of dedicated anti-submarine tactics provided a means of defence and attack against the U-boats. Gordon Williamson describes the design and development of these two deadly opponents, their tactics, strengths and weaknesses, weaponry and training. He provides an insight into the lives of the Royal Navy and Wolf Pack crews as they played their deadly games of cat and mouse on the high seas, gambling with their lives and the fate of the nations.

Biographical Note

Gordon Williamson was born in 1951 and works for the Scottish Land Register. He spent seven years with the Military Police TA and has published a number of books and articles on the decorations of the Third Reich and their recipients. Lee James Ray studied design before beginning a career in digital illustration. He worked on numerous gaming products creating 3D models and backgrounds, before becoming a freelance graphic designer in 2004. Howard Gerrard studied at the Wallasey School of Art and has been a freelance designer and illustrator for over 20 years. He is an associate member of the Guild of Aviation Artists and has won both the Society of British Aerospace Companies Award and the Wilkinson Sword Trophy.


  • Introduction
  • Chronology
  • Strategic situation
  • Design & Development
  • Technical Specifications: Discussion of the technical details of the vessels, anti-submarine weapons and the specs of the different types of U-boats.
  • Combatants: A study of the crews, their training and tactics.
  • Combat: A review of specific combat actions.
  • Analysis
  • Conclusion: A review of the outcomes of the U-boat war, and effect on post-war naval developments.
  • Bibliography and further reading list.