Iain Ballantyne

Iain Ballantyne


Iain’s writing assignments have taken him flying over the Norwegian Arctic with the UK’s Commando Helicopter Force, on patrols with the Royal Marines in Ulster’s so-called Bandit Country (during the Troubles) and into sea minefields off war-torn Kuwait and even into the Bosnian war zone.

Winner of a British Maritime Charitable Foundation (BMCF) Special Recognition Award for his ‘consistent and unwavering contribution to raising maritime awareness over the years’, as a journalist Iain Ballantyne covered the front line activities of navies around the world.

Aside from being one of the few writers to voyage beneath the waves in a Royal Navy nuclear-powered submarine, he has also visited closed zones in Russia, including Murmansk, Kronstadt and the Crimea.

When it comes to writing on naval history Iain’s action-packed account of WW2 sea combat, ‘Killing the Bismarck’, garnered a Mountbatten Maritime Award Certificate of Merit while his ground-breaking ‘Hunter Killers’ was the first book to tell the truth behind several dangerous episodes in the Cold War under the sea.

A one-time London-based defence and diplomatic correspondent for a national news agency, Iain has contributed to coverage of naval and defence issues in The Sunday Telegraph, Western Morning News and Scotland-on-Sunday, as well as prestigious publications published on behalf of NATO and the Royal Navy.

In addition to being founding (and current) Editor of the global naval news magazine ‘WARSHIPS International Fleet Review’ Iain also produces HPC Publishing’s popular ‘Guide to the Royal Navy’.

Aside from regularly commentating on geo-political naval affairs and maritime history for regional television and radio, Iain’s other varied pursuits in the past have included movie reviewing (for newspapers, magazines and radio) and co-devising a six-part wine game show (broadcast on the UK’s Channel 4). Iain also for some years worked on numerous projects for London-based Grosvenor Film, both in project conceptualization and script-writing.

Iain’s public speaking engagements have included giving a talk on the pursuit and destruction of battleship Bismarck at the National Museum of the Royal Navy and, most recently, a very well received talk on the same topic at the Naval & Military Club, St James’s. Earlier this year (2016) he spoke on issues surrounding renewal of the UK’s Trident nuclear deterrent to the Defence Society of Westminster School.

Iain Ballantyne @IBallantyn

#OTD 1941 Admiralty Floating Dock No. 4 is being towed to the Clyde from Plymouth. Capable of lifting a vessel of 33,000 tons she is a High Value Unit and passage planning includes the allocation of contact and influence sweepers https://buff.ly/3BR9pRA #Sweepers80

#OnThisDay 2013 Adm Sir John 'Sandy' Woodward died aged 81. Born in #Penzance he entered @RoyalNavy in 1946 and his @DartmouthBRNC House Officer said he 'lacks drive & determination'. He left the RN as CINCVAVHOME in 1989 but will be remembered as Falklands Task Force Commander

D in our #MaritimeAZ is for dazzle ships - shown in the Mersey in this painting by Leonard Campbell Taylor. Ships were painted with dazzle designs during the First World War to confuse the enemy.

Find out more and see a recent tribute to dazzle ships:

'With each shift of perspective, coupled with essential scene setting & background detail only where necessary...tension is ratcheted up. It increases with each turn of the page.'
@BoneyAbroad reviews 'Bismarck: 24 Hours to Doom' -
expanded edition @AgoraBooksLDN #History #WW2

Delighted to see my review of @IBallantyn's updated Bismarck: 24 Hours to Doom in the latest issue of @WarshipsIFR. I said that Iain gives us a "clearer and more human picture" of the battle. It is a moving read and well worth your time. @AgoraBooksLDN


@RoyalNavy Here's the video version of our look at the latest activities of UK Carrier Strike Group #CSG21 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WbAJ9ZucJCA #Navies #naval #Defence #military #geopolitics #F35B #navalaviation #aircraftcarrier #news @indiannavy @USMC @RoyalNavy @mindefsg @USNavy More in the mag itself

Our web site report on the progress of the UK Carrier Strike Group #CSG21 from the Med to the #SouthChinaSea as the @RoyalNavy returns to the big league in the most dynamic region of #naval expansion and risks https://www.warshipsifr.com/news/uk-strike-carrier-ventures-into-south-china-sea/ #news #geopolitics #RoyalNavy #defence #navies

From the Med to the South China Sea, our latest @WarshipsIFR #news video charting the progress of the UK Carrier Strike Group https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WbAJ9ZucJCA #navies #naval #Defence #military #geopolitics @RoyalNavy #CSG21 @smrmoorhouse @USMC #F35B @HMSQNLZ @indiannavy @mindefsg

An extract from the interview by @IBallantyn with Commodore David Eagles, Royal Fleet Auxiliary boss @RFAHeadquarters in the @WarshipsIFR 'Guide to the Royal Navy'. How to get it wherever you are & especially in the UK https://www.warshipsifr.com/news/grn2021/ #RoyalNavy #RFA @RoyalNavy #navy

Born this day 1st. August 1920.
PO. Cardale Frederick Alexander Capon.
One of THE FEW.
'Carl' as he was known often flew as Sqn Ldr 'Bob' Tuck's wingman. He was tragically killed on New Years Day in 1941 trying to land in a snowstorm.

The latest edition of @WarshipsIFR is packed full of #naval #news analysis and commentaries, with @HMSDefender on the cover, which we share here alongside the contents page. Available as hard copy edition or digital http://bit.ly/wifrmag #navies #geopolitics #defence #maritime

A reminder that photo manipulation is almost as old as photography. A pic of WW1 British sub B11 (read @IBallantyn's book to learn about it) is stitched onto a mixture of backgrounds. The captain went to Jr's school.

Of interest to @hoaxeye, @TheDreadShips @StuartHumphryes

FGS Bayern is off on her travels and here's a related @WarshipsIFR video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xx_mL1Spgik https://twitter.com/bundeswehrInfo/status/1420725682649419777

#SubSaturday AIP (Air Independent Power) submarines explained. This is a new Covert Shores video. Corrections and feedback welcomed.


Looking forward to new/revised p'back edition 'HMS London' using fresh material I supplied to @penswordbooks In the meantime here's cover https://www.pen-and-sword.co.uk/HMS-London-Paperback/p/20247 of 19-year-old h/b edition - new one hopefully as good if not better than p/b of 'HMS Rodney' & 'Warspite' (seen here)

@NavyLookout @RFATiderace @RFATidesurge @RFATideforce @RFATidespring @wolfie250 Commodore Eagles says in interview with @IBallantyn that 'Tidesurge will join the deployment in its final stages, to provide additional fuelling options & support the passage home to the UK'
Wonder if 1 will stay EofS as ready tanker. LRG(S) concept will need this to be credible

#SovietNavy #ColdWar #submarine The first nuclear submarine of the project 627 K-3 "Leninsky Komsomol" is preparing for the transition from Snezhnegorsk, Murmansk region, to Kronstadt, where it will become an exhibit of the Naval Museum. https://tass.ru/obschestvo/11959991

The #RussianNavy #corvette RFS Ingushetiya is seen here sailing south through the Turkish Straits on the way to operate from the naval facility at Tartus, Syria.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cz3Dld1xqto #naval #warships
Video @devrimyaylali
* This is a reposting after a slight video edit.

Not just UK Carrier Strike Group making its presence felt in #IndoAsiaPacific as @deutschemarine sending #warship out there too, as reported in new @WarshipsIFR http://bit.ly/wifrmag + our YouTube channel https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xx_mL1Spgik #naval #news #geopolitics #GermanNavy #warships

Royal Navy N-class submarine HMS Nautilus from #WW1.

As far as I can find in my research, she was by far the largest submarine in the world when built. Yet hardly known today.

10 torpedo tubes! Hard to spit all of them though