Thanks for all the replies, all most welcome and helpful.
From reading 'Castles of Steel'- I appreciate that not everyone feels Massie's work is accurate, but a chap has to start somewhere-there were arguments raging after the battle concerning Cradock's actions. The implication being that Cradock could have made a decision not to take on Von Spee superior strength, and sailed off.
Yes of course Von Spee's ships could have pursued .
Would Cradock also have faced court martial if he had not engaged the enemy and survived?
It seems that what could be classed as 'courageous' by one person could be counted as 'foolhardy' by someone else . Also a naval commander is risking the lives of many others besides his own, so there are questions to be raised if one accepts that Cradock had a degree of choice.
My opinion so far, and might well change with more study, is that at this particular stage in the Great War and with the spectre of the Broad Fourteens sinkings so recent, that a Royal Navy admiral could not be seen to be backing down when knowing that the enemy was so near.
Regards, Michael Bully
bill24chev, on 01 April 2012 - 06:41 PM, said:
Spee's ships had been away from home sometime so may not have been as fast as their designed speed, they did out gun the RN ships, even Good Hope's two 9.2's had less range than the 8 inch guns on the German heavy criusers.
Craddock's Sqadron included the slowest ship in the engagement an AMC but he had wisley ordered this ship away before the battle started.
Also untill the two squadrons sigted each other both sides thoughy they would be engaging a single light cruiser.