John Johnson Allen went to sea in 1961 with BP Tanker Company as a navigating apprentice, rising to the rank of Second Officer. He then pursued a career in the property industry. He has a Master of Arts in maritime history, a Liveryman of the Honourable Company of Master Mariners and a Fellow of both the Royal Historical Society and a of the Royal Institute of Navigation. He has written two previous books Voices from the Bridge (with David Smith) and They Couldnt Have Done It Without Us: The Merchant Navy in the Falklands War. He lives in Norfolk.