Books: "Last Dawn" David Turner – Video report included
A nation’s strength was often determined by the number of its battleships….this book is told to remember the men of the battleship Royal Oak who made the supreme sacrifice….her loss left parents, wives, children, families, mourning the loss of a dear son, loving husband, gentle father and close relative.’ Quote taken from Foreward of ‘Last Dawn, The Royal Oak Tragedy at Scapa Flow’ by David Turner.
A tragic chapter plucked from the horror of the Second World War was brought vividly to life courtesy of local author Mr David Turner on Saturday morning, 16th May as he talked with customers at Knutsford’s Waterstone’s bookshop. In-store to sign copies of his book ‘Last Dawn’, Mr Turner captivated visitors with his formidable insight into the horrific sinking of one of the Royal Navy’s top battleships, HMS Royal Oak following a huge explosion in Scapa Flow, Orkney on October 13th 1939.
Mr Turner’s book, written in commemoration of his own uncle is a dramatic and moving reassessment of what became the biggest loss of boy sailors in a single Royal Navy event in World War II. Drawn from both intensive research through declassified photographs and naval records as well as personal family memories and statements from survivors this timely book is a personal, revealing and moving tribute to the 833 young men who lost their lives that day.
Due to be made into a documentary in August for the History channel to commemorate the 70th anniversary of the disaster, this vital link to previously hidden stories features personal letters, archival photographs and documents lovingly presented and accompanied by an informative and insightful text.
Throughout the day, David’s table was rarely vacant with customers drawn to the event expressing instant curiosity, especially given the visually attractive display of his books alongside laminated images of the ship which David had painstakingly prepared. Everyone who attended the event found it extremely interesting and expressed their gratitude to David for sharing his uncle’s legacy in such an honest and open manner.