Respected historian Lord Asa Briggs has passed away

Lord Asa Briggs, a well-respected historian and advocate of education, passed away peacefully at his East-Sussex home in Lewes on 15 March 2016.

He led an incredible, fast-paced life and contributed his expertise to a huge number of educational institutes, helping to establish the Open University and Sussex University. During World War II, he was stationed at Bletchley Park where he worked at the code-breaking station that eventually deciphered Germany’s Enigma code.

Born in Keighley, Yorkshire, Briggs attended Cambridge University where he graduated with a BA in 1941, and a BSc in Economics from the University of London External Programme later that same year.

Briggs told History Today about his University interview: “The history fellow who interviewed me in December 1937 – I was only 16 then – said: ‘Briggs, you are only a baby, but there is going to be a war and I would like you to take your degree before you go into uniform’.”

In 1976, Lord Briggs was made a life peer and sat as a crossbencher.

He was a great and influential man who will be missed my many. Pen & Sword Books is incredibly proud to publish his trilogy of Frontline titles.

British Army Military Book of the Year

Two Pen & Sword titles have been shortlisted for the British Army Military Book of the Year 2016.

Richard Mead‘s The Men Behind Monty and Paul Moorcraft‘s The Jihadist Threat have both been nominated by the British Army Military Book of the Year.

The Men Behind Monty, released April 2015, examines the roles played by the staff in the victorious campaigns of Field Marshal Viscount Montgomery. Whereas The Jihadist Threat, a timely and controversial book that was added to Pen & Sword’s ever-expanding catalogue of titles in October 2015, examines the international and domestic threats to the West from Jihadism.

In the 10th year of the award there are six titles in the running, with shortlisting determined by how well the books had been received and reviewed in newspapers and journals.

Paul Moorcraft said: “I have won awards for fiction, but it is great to be honoured by the top prize in military history. After Sandhurst and decades of travel, now I have the honour to come home and lecture at Aldershot’s Prince Consort’s Library, the central depository for the army’s military history collection, as part of the selection process.

“The audience will be mainly army officers. So I shall try to be serious for a change. Friends warn me not to tell allegedly funny war stories like my mixing my toothpaste with a tube of Preparation H, when my head-torch ran out in Basra.

“I am not in the same league as previous winners such as Antony Beevor but I shall do my best to fly the flag for Pen and Sword.”

The British Battleship to be Book of the Month



The British Battleship (Pen & Sword Books, 2015) by Norman Friedman will be the Army and Navy Club’s book of the month in March this year.
One of the most intensely studied of all naval topics, the British battleship is the most popular and no one is more qualified to write about it, than the most highly regarded of all naval writers, Norman Friedman.

With such a huge following, his latest title; The British Battleship was waited for with eager anticipation, that of which has paid off by this amazing recognition by the Rag Club.