The Forgotten Flotilla: The Craft of Heroes – Greece, Crete and North Africa 1941 was launched last Thursday at the University of Sydney’s Australian Archaeological Institute at Athens.

Formally launched by the Greek Ambassador to Australia Haris Dafaranos, the event explored a maritime archaeological project dating back to one of the most significant periods in Australia’s wartime history – World War II, and in particular, the Battle of Crete.

Written by Dr Michael Bendon, the book presents the archaeologist’s most recent research into two British wrecks from World War II, which are located offshore the ancient site of Phalasarna on the northwest coast of Crete.

Through tireless study, Dr Bendon found the vessels to be Tank Landing Craft Mk1, meaning they were prototypes developed by the British.

The writer takes the reader on a journey from the time the vessels were ordered by Winston Churchill to their first deployment in the Eastern Mediterranean in 1941, and the considerable support they provided in the Mediterranean campaigns during the war.

The book also brings to light the achievements of heroes from that period who were yet to be recognised.

A historical account like no other, the book is given an extra personal dimension with the inclusion of a personal account by a commander of one of the boats found to be residing in England.

For more information and to purchase the book, visit