Filey Literature Festival's maritime talk a sell-out success

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Author and maritime historian Dr James Davey shared stories of the plight of sailors in the Royal Navy during the late 18th century to avid historians and local fishermen alike at the talk hosted by Yorkshire Coast 1779 at the Filey Sea Cadetsnote-0.

Based on his book 'Tempest - the Royal Navy and the Age of Revolutions',, Dr Davey explained to the full house the extent to which sailors avoided impressment, and if captured what their lives were like at sea. In equal measure, what life was like for their families not knowing where their loved one was, nor when (or if!) they would return.

During his research for the book Davey also discovered that much of the unrest in the country took place in the north east of England, including Yorkshire, where sailors were protesting, striking and even rioting to improve their working conditions including "impressment". There were also a few positive stories, such as the sailor who was pressed-ganged into the Royal Navy and rose to become an admiral!

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"When invited to participate in Filey Literature Festival we wanted to bring to life what it was like for the communities living along the coast during this period and James Davey's book accomplishes that." explained James Hodgson, director of Yorkshire Coast 1779. "It has been great to be able to be a part of this event as we make plans for the 1779 Festival on 20-23 September."

Tempest Talk at Filey Sea Cadets HQTempest Talk at Filey Sea Cadets HQ
Tempest Talk at Filey Sea Cadets HQ

Yorkshire Coast 1779, raising awareness of the Battle of Flamborough Head which took place on 23 September 1779, hosted the event with the support of Filey Bay Today and retired US Navy commander, Jim Poole.