The Lancastria Tradgedy

The Lancastria Tradgedy

Regular price
Sale price
Unit price
Become a member and save up to 15%

Tax included. Shipping calculated at checkout.


The Lancastria Tragedy: Sinking and cover-up: June 1940 by Stephen Wynn.

The story behind the sinking of the Lancastria comes in two parts: the sinking of the ship itself and the people who died, and the aftermath which led to allegations of a government cover up ordered by Winston Churchill. There is an 'officially accepted' list of those who died, but allegations that hundreds more went down with the ship, and have not been accounted for, still linger to this very day.

The Lancastria, a pre-war Cunard cruise liner, was requisitioned by the Admiralty and turned into a war-time troop ship. On 17 June 1940, whilst being used as part of Operation Aerial to evacuate civilian refugees and British military personnel  from France, it was anchored about 5 miles from the coast of St Nazaire. While waiting for a naval escort to see it safely back to England, the Lancastria was attacked by enemy aircraft and sank within 20 minutes. As no official figures have ever been released,  there is no way of knowing exactly how many lives were lost.

Winston Churchill placed what was known as a 'D' Notice on the tragic events, thereby restricting the press from reporting about it. However, once a New York newspaper had broken the story, the flood gates were opened for British newspapers to follow suit. But what was the purpose of the 'D' Notice? Was it because the British public had already received too much bad news sinne the war had begun, as Churchill declared? Or was it a cover-up?

Those who survived the incident were told in no uncertain terms not to speak about their experience, although plenty did. With much of the information about the Lancastria's sinking in the public domain within a matter of days, the question has to be asked, why are official documents in relation to the matter being kept secret until the year 2040?


Format: Paperback, 184 pages

Dimensions: 15.5 x 23.3 x 1.4cm

Publisher: Pen & Sword

ISBN: 9781526706638


We aim to dispatch orders between 1-3 working days, however, as some items are stored at individual venues some orders may take longer. Orders are currently being dispatched between Monday and Friday. If you have any queries, please e-mail

Standard UK delivery is by Royal Mail and costs £3.50 but may be more for heavier parcels. Most items take between 1 and 5 working days to be delivered.

John Moores Painting Prize prints are dispatched direct from the printers, if you order prints with other shop items then your order will arrive in multiple deliveries. Please allow 7 days for dispatch of prints.

We use Royal Mail's airmail service to post overseas. This can take from 1 to 4 weeks and costs from £10.00 in Europe and from £15.00 for the rest of the world. As with UK delivery, this will be more for heavier parcels. Please be aware there may be local duty and/or taxes payable on goods delivered outside the UK. National Museums Liverpool are not responsible for paying these charges and they are not included in your payment to us.

If you would like to order a large number of items, it may be worth contacting us directly to enquire about shipping costs.

Christmas last order dates

Recommended dates for orders to be delivered before Christmas 2023-

UK - 17 December 2023

Europe - 11 December 2023

Rest of world - 10 December 2023


If you are not totally satisfied with your order, please return it to us. Goods must be returned in the same condition you received them within 45 days of receiving the order. We will issue a refund or replacement at your request subject to certain conditions being met.

For more details go to the Delivery and Returns Page.

These terms do not apply to John Moores Painting Prize original paintings. Please see separate Terms and conditions in the description.

Gift ideas

From Liverpool gifts to unique art-inspired accessories, we have a great range of gift ideas.

Shop Now