Dover Harbour, Royal Gateway
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This book celebrates the 400th anniversary of the Dover Harbour Board, first instituted by King James I in 1606. It did not, however, mark the beginning of Dover's harbour. As the nearest point in England to the
continent of Europe and with the only break in its famous white cliffs, Dover and its harbour have played an important part in the nation's history by providing the most convenient place of entry and departure for
this island, for both friends and foe, from the earliest times to the present day.
The strategic importance of this gateway in times of war and for communication and commerce in times of peace has long been
recognised by the British monarchy and governments. This explains why, over the centuries, the royal family has not only made great use of Dover's harbour but has also taken a keen interest in its maintenance and
development. It is appropriate, therefore, that this commemorative book focuses on visits to the harbour by the British royal family and upon its development from a crude safe haven to the modern bridge to Europe
that it provides for Britain today.