Richard Woodman

Captain Richard Martin Woodman LVO (born 1944) is an English novelist and naval historian who retired in 1997 from a 37-year nautical career, mainly working for Trinity House, to write full-time.[1]


His main work is 14 novels about the career of Nathaniel Drinkwater,[2] and shorter series about James Dunbar and William Kite, but he also has written a range of factual books about 18th century and WW2 history. These include a trilogy of studies of convoys in the Second World War and a five volume history of the British Merchant Navy. Unlike many other modern naval historical novelists, such as C.S. Forester or Patrick O'Brian, he has served afloat. He went to sea at the age of sixteen as an indentured midshipman and has spent eleven years in command.[3] His experience ranges from cargo-liners to ocean weather ships and specialist support vessels as well as yachts, square-riggers, and trawlers.[3]

Woodman is a regular correspondent for the shipping newspaper Lloyd's List and continues his close association with the sea as a keen yachtsman. He also serves on the Corporate Board of Trinity House. He has won several awards including the Society for Nautical Research's Anderson Medal in 2005[3] and the Marine Society's Harmer Award in 1978.[1]


Woodman was appointed Lieutenant of the Royal Victorian Order (LVO) in the 2014 New Year Honours for his services to Trinity House.[4]


Nathaniel Drinkwater seriesEdit

  1. An Eye of the Fleet
  2. A King's Cutter
  3. A Brig of War
  4. The Bomb Vessel
  5. The Corvette
  6. 1805
  7. Baltic Mission
  8. In Distant Waters
  9. A Private Revenge
  10. Under False Colours
  11. The Flying Squadron
  12. Beneath the Aurora
  13. The Shadow of the Eagle
  14. Ebb Tide


William Kite trilogyEdit

  1. The Guineaman
  2. The Privateersman
  3. The East Indiaman

James Dunbar novelsEdit

  1. Waterfront
  2. Under Sail

Kit Faulkner novelsEdit

  1. A Ship for the King
  2. For King or Commonwealth
  3. The King's Chameleon

Other fictionEdit

  • The Ice Mask
  • Dead Man Talking
  • Wager
  • Endangered Species
  • The Darkening Sea
  • Voyage East or The Antigone
  • The Accident
  • Act of Terror
  • Captain of the Caryatid
  • The Cruise of the Commissioner
  • "Decision at Trafalgar"


  • The Sea Warriors
  • The Victory of Seapower, 1806–1814
  • Keepers of the Sea: The Yachts and Tenders of Trinity House
  • The Lighthouses of Trinity House
  • A Brief History of Mutiny
  • View from the Sea
  • Arctic Convoys, 1941–1945
  • Malta Convoys
  • The Real Cruel Sea, The Merchant Navy in the Battle of the Atlantic, 1939–1943
  • The History of the Ship
  • The Story of Sail (co-author)
  • ...Of Daring Temper, The History of The Marine Society
  • A History of the British Merchant Navy
  1. Neptune's Trident
  2. Britannia's Realm
  3. Masters Under God
  4. More Days, More Dollars
  5. Fiddler's Green


  1. ^ a b "Richard Woodman". Fantastic Fiction. Retrieved 11 May 2011.
  2. ^ "The Nathaniel Drinkwater series, by Richard Woodman". Archived from the original on 11 April 2011. Retrieved 11 May 2011.
  3. ^ a b c "The Surprising History of the British Merchant Navy". The History Press. Retrieved 11 May 2011.
  4. ^ "No. 60728". The London Gazette (Supplement). 31 December 2013. p. 4.
  5. ^ "Nautical novels by Richard Woodman". Sheridan House. Retrieved 11 May 2011.