A strategically important natural harbor in the Orkney Islands, Scapa Flow served as Britain's main fleet anchorage during World Wars I and II. In 1914 and again in 1939, the British began building a comprehensive defensive network by fortifying the entrances to Scapa Flow, and then extended these defenses to cover most of Orkney. By 1940, it had become an island fortress, the largest integrated defensive network of its kind in Europe, manned by as many as 50,000 Commonwealth troops.
Angus Konstam hails from the Orkney Islands, and is the author of over 50 books, 30 of which are published by Osprey. This acclaimed and widely published author has written several books on piracy, including The History of Pirates. His most recent work is a full-length piratical biography: Blackbeard: America's Most Notorious Pirate. A former naval officer and museum professional, he worked as the Curator of Weapons at the Tower of London and as the Chief Curator of the Mel Fisher Maritime Museum in Key West, Florida. He now works as a full-time author and historian, and lives in Edinburgh, Scotland.