A Monocular Memoir: A Pilot's Life


SBAC Farnborough: A History


B-24 Bridge Busters: RAF Liberators over Burma


Air Wars 1920-1939: The Development and Evolution of Fighter Tactics


The Junkers Ju 52 Story


Rare Birds: Forgotten Aircraft of the Second World War


The Apache in European Service


‘Paddy’ Finucane and the Legend of the Kenley Wing


German Night Fighter Force 1917-1945


Operation Big Ben: The Anti-V2 Spitfire Missions


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A Monocular Memoir: A Pilot's Life

Product no.: 978-1-78155-563-7
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Air Commodore Michael Williams lived his life in the air; whatever he could get his hands on, he flew. Spending over thirty years as an RAF fighter pilot, flying instructor, and test pilot, his log book boasts more than fifty types of military aircraft flown - everything from single-seater jets to lumbering freight carriers.

Not only did Michael log more hours on more aircraft than anyone would be able to do today, he also did much of it as one of only three one-eyed pilots to ever fly in the RAF. His story is not just one of individual endeavour; it took place amidst the tumultuous political and military landscape of the twentieth century, during which he found himself at the heart of historic events such as the British withdrawal from Aden.

This memoir will fascinate military aircraft enthusiasts and inform military historians, but it will also enthral those who enjoy tales of flying back when it was full-on, fun, and furious. Above all, A Monocular Memoir is the story of a man who approached his flying and his life with a dry sense of humour. 

THE AUTHOR

Air Commodore Michael Williams has flown a total of 56 types of aircraft, from single seater jets to lumbering freight carriers in a flying career spanning nearly 30 years. He did this amidst the changing political and military landscape of the mid to late 20th century at the heart of historic events such as the British withdrawal from Aden. Not only did Michael Williams log up more hours on more aircraft than anyone would be able to do today - he did much of it with only one eye.

FORMAT
Dimensions: 234 x 156 mm
Binding: paperback
Extent: 160 pages
Illustrations: 48 black-and-white photographs

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SBAC Farnborough: A History

Product no.: 978-1-78155-238-4
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  • Beautifully illustrated and written by a leading aviation expert
  • A definitive book on the subject of Farnborough from 1932 onwards
  • Of interest to military historians, aviation enthusiasts and modellers

Home to the famous biennial Farnborough Air Show, the town of Farnborough in the south of England has had a pivotal role in the history of British aviation since flying commenced from the site in 1905. The Royal Aeronautical Establishment was set up there and rapidly expanded as the scene of many significant developments in British aviation for many decades. Over the years, a range of buildings were constructed for various purposes and to house specific functions such as wind tunnels.

Many of these buildings are now listed and protected as part of a museum on the site. Farnborough is best known for its experiments and development of aircraft types. After the Second World War, it played host to a considerable variety of aircraft, including a number of Axis types captured during the war.

Beautifully illustrated and written by a leading aviation expert, SBAC Farnborough: A History is the definitive book on the subject of Farnborough from 1932 onwards.

THE AUTHOR

Peter G. Dancey began his career in aviation as a boy entrant with the RAF. Dancey is an established and critically acclaimed aviation author with a number of successful titles to his name. He lives in Milton Keynes, England. Dancey had previously contributed towards Fonthill Media with British Aircraft Manufacturers Since 1909, The Avro Vulcan: A History (both 2014) and Soviet Aircraft Industry (2015).

FORMAT
Dimensions: 234 x 156 mm
Binding: paperback
Extent: 176 pages
Illustrations: 132 black-and-white photographs

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B-24 Bridge Busters: RAF Liberators over Burma

Product no.: 978-1-78155-519-4
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  • Referenced from operational flying log books written by aircrews during the Second World War
  • Provides a detailed examination of the Japanese military administration and occupation of Burma
  • Provides the true account of the destruction of the infamous bridge over the River Kwai
  • Profusely illustrated with rare and unpublished photographs


B-24 Bridge Busters: RAF Liberators over Burma provides a gripping and detailed account of RAF Liberator missions against the Japanese in Asia. British and Commonwealth aircrews displayed great gallantry in many instances on low-level precise bombing sorties destroying specific targets, including a great number of bridges constructed by the Japanese in their conquest to reach India.

A number of detailed accounts are based upon personal flying logbooks and other unique material originating from the pilots and aircrews. 159 Squadron was the first four-engine heavy bomber squadron that flew from India and operated over Burma. They instigated greater accuracy in destroying a multitude of vital targets.

The legendary film The Bridge over the River Kwai (1957) evokes images that are historically set in celluloid; however, that blockbusting film had separated fact from fiction and this book examines the true events that took place through ‘Bridge Busting’, including techniques developed and deployed by the RAF against the Japanese.

THE AUTHOR

Colin Pateman grew up in the south of England and spent the majority of his working life as a police officer. His key roles were handling specialist search dogs and as a police search advisor working alongside the Royal Engineers. He is a passionate collector of aviation memorabilia, gaining great satisfaction from the gathering and preserving of personal accounts undertaken by pilots and aircrews during the Second World War. Pateman’s previous books published by Fonthill Media include Unwanted Hero, Goldfish, Caterpillars & Guinea Pigs, Unshackled Spirit, Glorious in Solitude, Beheaded by Hitler: Cruelty of the Nazis, Judicial Terror and Civilian Executions 1933-45 and RAF Special Duties: Unique Sorties of the Second World War.

FORMAT
Dimensions: 234 x 156 mm
Binding: hardback
Extent: 208 pages
Illustrations: 37 black-and-white photographs

 

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Air Wars 1920-1939: The Development and Evolution of Fighter Tactics

Product no.: 978-1-78155-520-0
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  • Profusely illustrated with many rare and unpublished photographs
  • Use of previously unpublished defence papers and global in exhaustive research
  • Original analysis with some startling conclusions


Spain (1936-9), China (1937 onwards), Mongolia (1939), Finland (1939-40) and France (1939-40) were a testing ground for a new approach to air tactics with western democracies and totalitarian states analysing the resulting lessons.

Attention in Air Wars 1920-1939: The Development and Evolution of Fighter Tactics is given to the means by which intelligence on aerial tactics was collected and why it was not always fully absorbed, resulting in many nations having to relearn the same lessons at the outset of the Second World War. Finland, during the Winter War, while not involved in Spain or any other air war of the time, better applied the lessons being learned than that of the Soviet Union, which had been directly involved in air wars fought over China, Mongolia and Spain.

In the case of Britain, not only were the lessons of Spain ignored, but so too that of its own experimental fighter unit, the AFDE (Air Fighting Development Establishment) that had been formed in 1934 and which was reinforcing the intelligence received from those real air war conflicts.

THE AUTHOR

A graduate of the University of Lancaster and former lecturer at the University of Kent, Philip MacDougall has written extensively on the theme of nations preparing for war, delving into inter-war aviation records, looking at various air wars and how different nations interpreted the tactical lessons resulting from those conflicts. MacDougall has edited Kent Airfields in the Battle of Britain (Meresborough Books) and has written many articles and books on military aviation as well as naval support facilities.

FORMAT
Dimensions: 234 x 156 mm
Binding: hardback
Extent: 208 pages
Illustrations: 5 maps and 64 black-and-white photographs

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The Junkers Ju 52 Story

Product no.: 978-1-78155-515-6
Cover price £25.00
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  • A comprehensive and detailed account of the iconic Junkers Ju 52
  • Includes details of Ju 52/3m operations in Germany and nearly thirty other countries, including Australia, Canada, Great Britain and South Africa
  • With technical descriptions, every production variant is described
  • Covers the rarely described Ju 252 and Ju 352 Herkules
  • Post-war production, usage and includes a list of surviving aircraft
  • Handsomely illustrated with high-quality photographs spanning almost ninety years


The iconic and legendary Junkers Ju 52 first flew in 1930. Designed and built by the Junkers Aircraft Company of Dessau, Germany, the Ju 52 was originally intended as a single-engine cargo aircraft. An upgraded model, the Ju 52/3m, was powered by three engines and excelled as an eighteen-seat airliner.

By the late 1930s, hundreds of the safe, reliable and much loved Ju 52/3ms were serving with airlines in more than twenty countries, including the pre-war British Airways. Also, it was used as a bomber by the Luftwaffe, particularly in the Spanish Civil War. During the Second World War, the Ju 52/3m was the mainstay of Luftwaffe transport squadrons.

Affectionately known as ‘Faithful Old Annie’ and ‘Iron Annie’, the Ju 52/3m was used during the invasions of Norway, the Low Countries, Crete and the resupply of Stalingrad and Rommel’s Africa Korps. In all, around 5,000 were built and after the war, production continued in France and Spain. Amazingly, captured Ju 52/3ms were rebuilt post-war and briefly operated as airliners on domestic routes in Great Britain.

THE AUTHOR

Jan Forsgren has an MA in History and specialises in Sweden’s relationship with Cambodia from 1975 to 1989; other academic merits include international law and archival science. He enjoys travelling, aviation history and previously contributed towards Fonthill Media with the critically acclaimed Sinking the Beast: The RAF 1944 Lancaster Raids Against Tirpitz.

FORMAT
Dimensions: 248 x 172 mm
Binding: hardback
Extent: 172 pages
Illustrations: 115 black-and-white and 43 colour photographs

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Rare Birds: Forgotten Aircraft of the Second World War

Product no.: 978-1-78155-524-8
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  • A unique look at Second World War aviation through the lens of unknown and forgotten aircraft
  • Fascinating images of rare and strange aircraft from the period
  • Gripping stories told from every fighting nation
  • Of interest to military historians, aviation enthusiasts and modellers


The Second World War saw the apex of piston-engine aircraft design and ushered the world into the jet age. Classic names such as the Supermarine Spitfire, North American P-51 Mustang, Mitsubishi A6M Zero, Messerschmitt Bf 109 and Il-2 Shturmovik have become the stuff of legend. There were, however, many more aircraft to take to the skies during the war.

Rare Birds: Forgotten Aircraft of the Second World War seeks to tell those stories: from the valiant Poles fighting the might of the Luftwaffe to the varied and excellent fighters of the French Armée De l’Air, to the graceful craft of Italy’s Regia Aeronautica. This book seeks to tell the tales of the forgotten, doomed or those who failed to succeed during war. The stories of these aircraft, drawn from Allies and Axis nations alike, bring forth a fuller picture of aviation during the greatest airborne conflict in world history. Telling these stories will give readers an interesting and informative look into the past with personal reflections and a call to arms for the study of history.

THE AUTHOR

Charles R. G. Bain, a life-long enthusiast of aviation, pursued an Honours and Master’s degree in History from the University of Windsor in Canada as well as a degree in Education. His interests are wide-ranging, but the history of flight is, and will remain, his first historical love. Bain spends his spare time reading voraciously, teaching, and speaking on history to audiences of all ages. He relishes the chance to discuss and debate historical topics, and seeks to encourage contact with historical knowledge.

FORMAT
Dimensions: 234 x 156 mm
Binding: hardback
Extent: 224 pages
Illustrations: 44 black-and-white and 34 colour photographs

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The Apache in European Service

Product no.: 978-1-78155-444-9
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  • A glorious and detailed insight in to the Apache attack helicopter
  • Photographs by Darren Willmin, one of the best-known names in aviation photography
  • Over 160 beautiful colour photographs on glossy paper


The Apache helicopter is a revolutionary development in the history of war, designed to hunt, take out and destroy up to 256 targets in less than five minutes. Highly manoeuvrable and heavily armed, the combat-proven Apache is the primary attack helicopter for many countries worldwide and is feared by many armed forces as well as terror groups in Afghanistan, Iraq and Syria.

With its armour, sensors and heavy-duty weaponry, the Apache is a formidable opponent on the battlefield. It is a deadly combination of strength, agility and firepower. In The Apache in European Service, Darren Willmin explores the immense flying capabilities and the weaponry systems of the Apache that serves with the British, Greek and Royal Netherlands forces.

Willmin’s superb photographs capture the fundamentals of the Apache both from the ground and in the air. This unique collection will appeal to everyone with an interest in this truly amazing helicopter.

THE AUTHOR

Darren Willmin has been an aviation enthusiast since the age of nine and has been capturing aeronautical photographs for over twenty years. His passion for aviation has taken him around the world visiting airports, airbases and airshows capturing unique and stunning images in the process. A keen blogger through his website ‘Aviation in Action’, he is also the founder of the Herts Aviation Society. Willmin had previously co-written Tornado in Pictures: The Multi-Role Legend for Fonthill Media (2015) with David Gledhill.

FORMAT
Dimensions: 235 x 165 mm
Binding: paperback
Extent: 96 pages
Illustrations: 164 colour photographs

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‘Paddy’ Finucane and the Legend of the Kenley Wing

Product no.: 978-1-78155-512-5
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  • The first detailed combat narrative of Kenley Wing’s combats and the first exposition of the Wing’s tactical problems and challenges
  • An absorbing account of the violent air war waged against formidable Luftwaffe fighter opposition by the Kenley Wing’s young pilots – men from Australia, New Zealand, Britain and Canada
  • An unflinching exploration of the Kenley Wing’s problems with over-claiming – the very basis upon which the Wing’s reputation was built
  • An analysis of the media-created legend of the RAF air ace, exemplified by men such as the Irishman, ‘Paddy’ Finucane, the Australian, ‘Bluey’ Truscott, and the New Zealander, ‘Hawkeye’ Wells


A year after the start of the Battle of Britain, the Kenley Wing was one of the six Allied fighter wings taking the war to the Luftwaffe in the RAF’s cross-channel air offensive over France.

Comprised of three Spitfire fighter squadrons, the Australian No. 452, the New Zealand No. 485, and the British No. 602, the Kenley Wing was typical of the wartime RAF in its cosmopolitan make-up, with pilots from all three countries as well as Ireland and Canada.

The wing’s famous ace pilots in late 1941 included the Irishman, ‘Paddy’ Finucane, the Canadian, Johnny Kent, the Australian, ‘Bluey’ Truscott, and the New Zealanders, Al Deere and ‘Hawkeye’ Wells.

The most famous of them all was the charismatic Finucane, a flight commander with 452 (Australian) Squadron, who dominated the wing’s scoring to become for a time the RAF’s greatest public relations asset. This book tells the story of how Finucane’s victories created the legend of the Kenley Wing in 1941.

THE AUTHOR

Anthony Cooper is the author of four books on aspects of Australian military history, including the award-winning Darwin Spitfires. His previous book was Kokoda Air Strikes on the New Guinea air campaign in 1942. His books are mostly focused upon the earlier air campaigns of the Second World War when Allied forces faced their greatest adversity. He is a school teacher in Brisbane, Australia, teaching history. Cooper has a PhD in German aviation history, is a former RAAF air defence controller and a lifelong reader, scale modeller and war gamer.

FORMAT
Dimensions: 234 x 156 mm
Binding: hardback
Extent: 272 pages
Illustrations: 32 black-and-white photographs

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German Night Fighter Force 1917-1945

Product no.: 978-1-78155-503-3
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  • A comprehensive and highly detailed reference work on the German night fighter force during both wars
  • Essential reading for the military historian and modeller
  • Profusely illustrated with over 190 mono photographs


The German night fighter force had its origins in the First World War to repel night raids and to fly long-range intruder sorties. They developed operational procedures, which became largely forgotten a few years after the Armistice.

The Western Allies, Britain and France, maintained and improved night-fighting tactics, but the creators of the new Luftwaffe did not at first think about night fighting at all and during the building up of the service, it received only cursory attention in the first large-scale war games held in November 1934. This changed in 1936 and the results of some exercises were set down in a secret study prepared for the Air District school in November of that year.

After the onset of war, and the British and French night attacks on the western area of the Reich, night-fighting became more of a priority. As a consequence of the urgent necessity, the Luftwaffe developed sophisticated techniques, including basic co-operation and co-ordination, and the increased use of electronic systems.

Gebhard Aders’ study of the history of the German night fighter force is a highly detailed analysis with numerous appendices, which provides a comprehensive account of the Luftwaffe’s thoroughness right up to the end when the hunters became the hunted.

Highly illustrated, German Night Fighter Force 1917-1945 also outlines techniques and tactics from 1917 up to the end of the war.

THE AUTHOR

Gebhard Aders is the author of numerous books on the Luftwaffe, including Stuka Dive Bombers, Pursuit Bombers, Combat Pilots, A Pictorial Chronical of German Close-Combat Aircraft to 1945 and Stukas, Jagdbomber, Schlachtflieger: Bildchronik der deutschen Nahkampfflugzeuge. He is an expert on German air defence and until retiring in 2001, he worked in the Cologne Archives.

FORMAT
Dimensions: 248 x 172 mm
Binding: hardback
Extent: 352 pages
Illustrations: 191 black-and-white photographs

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Operation Big Ben: The Anti-V2 Spitfire Missions

Product no.: 978-1-78155-439-5
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  • Appreciate the panic the V2 rockets had on the great minds of Whitehall
  • How brave soldiers, airmen and the French Resistance gathered important intelligence regarding storage depots and firing points of V2s behind enemy lines
  • All the details about the dive-bombing Spitfire missions sent to counter the V2 rocket threat

In heavy cloud, under intense flak and with little training, specially commissioned clipped-winged Spitfires dive-bombed V2 rockets sites, supply lines and storage depots in one of the most complex and crucial secret operations of the Second World War. With the help of the French and Dutch resistance, 30 Assault Unit, a crack team of commandos created by Ian Fleming, and the support of disinformation from the Joint Planning Staff of the War Cabinet, including the work of novelist Dennis Wheatley, British, Polish, Australian and Canadian Spitfire squadrons brought down the weight of V1 and V2 rocket strikes on the civilian population of London and the home counties.

Winston Churchill saw the panic of the British civilian and politicians alike, but had no way to counter the threat. However, through innovation and sheer bravery, a way forwards was created. Now read the intricacies of Operation Big Ben: The Anti-V2 Spitfire Missions.

THE AUTHOR

Craig Cabell is the author of over fifty books, including biography, history, true crime and fiction. His books such as The Kray Brothers – The Image Shattered and Killing Kennedy have proved to be hugely influential and include intricate ballistic information previously unappreciated. His book The History of 30 Assault Unit – Ian Fleming’s Red Indians inspired the film Age of Heroes that starred Sean Bean and Danny Dyer. His series of crime novels featuring antiquarian book dealer Jason Maccleson include A Pharaoh’s Last Secret and The Kennedy Assassins.

FORMAT
Dimensions: 234 x 156 mm
Binding: hardback
Extent: 208 pages
Illustrations: 16 black-and-white photographs

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