RELEASE DATE: 8 December 2016
The Royal navy and the Imperial German Navy 1914 - 1918
For years before the outbreak of the First World War, it was the expectation of most officers of the Royal Navy and the Imperial German Navy that very shortly thereafter a decisive fleet action would be fought. This had a major impact on the strategic thinking on both sides of the North Sea. In fact, the unalterable geographic situation meant that for the Grand Fleet in its Scottish bases the correct course to follow was not to seek a major fleet encounter. Essentially, it was by staying where it was that it could neutralise the High Seas Fleet, and enforce an economic blockade of Germany.
The history of the war in the North Sea between 1914 and 1918 is a record of the attempts to break the deadlock. It is also the history of the men who led the British and German navies.