Naval Collection at Gosport Discovery Centre


About the collection

The Hampshire Naval Collection is located in Local and Naval Studies and covers the Royal Navy and all aspects of British naval history including the Merchant Navy when there is an involvement in warfare. A substantial amount of material reflects the strong links between Hampshire, particularly Gosport, and the Navy. Past and present connections to the town are represented by sections on submarines, naval medicine, ordnance and naval aviation.

The majority of the books are for loan, but we have a number of books for reference and research use only.

A resources room is also open to the public providing quiet space for research and use of reference stock which has limited access. The room is open 9am to 4pm Monday, Wednesday and Friday and from 9am to 6pm on Tuesday and Thursday. Please contact the Centre to inform us of your intended visit (Telephone 0845 603 5631 and ask for Gosport Local & Naval Studies Centre).

When using the library catalogue, check for the shelf mark NA which identifies a title held in the collection.

The reference sources include a run of Brassey's Naval Annual from 1888 and Jane's Fighting Ships from 1898. A growing collection of Navy Lists now includes CD-Rom coverage for 1777 to 1805, and print volumes for a range of 19th century dates (currently undergoing binding repair) plus 1914 to 1938 and 1969 to date.

A dedicated CD-Rom terminal gives access to a further range of disks with a naval interest such as Index to Mariner's Mirror and the Journal of the Society for Nautical Research - for all the issues from 1911 to 2000.

Full FREE access to is now available at the Local and Naval Studies . can be used to search several resources at once, with over a million ship citations indexed. The database also includes indexes from books, journals, websites and other resources to make researching a vessel easier and more effective. Please ask staff for more details or to log you in.

A complete set of Admiralty charts for the waters surrounding the United Kingdom is held and a Chartfinder index has been created in order to search for locations by name.

A run of unique Gosport editions of the Hampshire Telegraph & Post and Naval Chronicle from 1939 to 1956 has been professionally conserved and bound as part of the collection. Free online access to this newpaper for the period 1800 - 1900 is now available as part of the 19th century British newspapers resource.

The Collection is a member of the Naval and Maritime Libraries and Archives Group (NMLAG) and participates in various events as well as sharing collection access for research purposes.

The Collection includes a number of naval journals

  • Jane's Defence Weekly
  • Journal of Navigation
  • Journal of the Royal Naval Medical Service
  • Mariners' Mirror
  • Naval Architect
  • Naval Engineers' Journal
  • Navigation News
  • Navy News
  • Seafarer
  • Seaways
  • Warship Technology
  • Warships

Naval Genealogy

Merchant Marine during wartime

General interest

In 2010 Hampshire Libraries held their own 'Air, Land and Sea' Book Awards. 113 titles were nominated by the public with an expert panel of judges then narrowing the field to 40 books for the voting round.

The winning titles were:

Related information

First World War