A concise history of Britain's coastal artillery defences from the death of Elizabeth I to the formal disbanding of the Coastal Artillery arm in 1956. The book, therefore, covers the rise and fall of the British Empire, and as such it is as much concerned with the protection of Britain's far-flung colonial outposts such as Gibraltar and Singapore, as it is with the guarding of the island itself. The author, himself a Royal Artillery man, insists that coast artillery is an offensive weapon, since: 'It was the coast defences that made it possible for the Navy to enact its offensive role by sustaining and securing that service in time of war'. With detailed descriptions and tables of personnel, artillery ordnance, and accounts of the actions fought by coastal artillery in the 17th-19th century wars with France and during the two World Wars, this is an interesting work of history as well as a useful addition to the library of the serious artillery specialist. Illustrated with 17 maps.