The Little Ships of England – the traditional craft of wooden boatbuilding, and the important roles those little ships play. They are made of British timber; oak, ash and elm. The same ship types that went to Dunkirk to rescue the many soldiers (see more below). Skilled shipwrights at work in a West- country shipyard, and shifts again to the exciting rescue of a fighter pilot by a launch on patrol. From Looe, Cornwall with opening shots in the Cornish fishing village of Polperro. The little ships of Dunkirk were 700 private boats that sailed from Ramsgate in England to Dunkirk in France between 26 May and 4 June 1940 as part of Operation Dynamo, the rescue of more than 338,000 British and French soldiers.