Reply To: Jutland and a direct train of cordite

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Bob Smith

It is rare that things can be blamed on one person. Clearly Fisher had overall responsibility but would have received ‘expert’ advice and acted on it. Two issues mentioned jump out. Firstly, submarines. Once the RN realised the deadly effect the German boats ere having, counter measures were adopted and its one submarine building programme was stepped up. Secondly, Scapa Flow. I’m not sure this was ever seen as a vulnerable anchorage in WW1 although block ships were sunk early on. It is when the Royal Oak was sunk in WW2 that its vulnerability was exposed and that led to the construction of the Churchill barriers. There were certainly vulnerabilities outside of the flow as the German Navy laid many mines, as the Hampshire was to discover, but minehunting operations were regular and for the most part effective. Missing a few can hardly be blamed on Fisher.