Mount of Aces: The Royal Aircraft Factory S.E.5a


Mount of Aces: The Royal Aircraft Factory S.E.5a


Fokker Fodder: The Royal Aircraft Factory B.E.2c


Britain’s Forgotten Fighters of the First World War


Hermann Goering in the First World War: The Personal Photograph Albums of Hermann Goering


A Flying Life: An Enthusiast’s Photographic Record of British Aviation in the 1930s


The Bad Boy: Bert Hall, Aviator and Mercenary of the Skies


Military Aviation of the First World War


The RNAS and the Birth of the Aircraft Carrier 1914-1918


De Havilland and Hatfield: 1910-1935


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Mount of Aces: The Royal Aircraft Factory S.E.5a

Product no.: 978-1-78155-115-8

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From the author of Fonthill Media’s Fokker Fodder: The Royal Aircraft Factory B.E.2c, Mount of Aces: The Royal Aircraft Factory S.E.5a is a fitting testament to a legendary fighter. Arguably, the Sopwith Camel may be the best known British fighter plane of the First World War that took on the mighty and feared Jastas over the killing fields that were the trenches. However, almost all the highest scoring aces including McCudden and Mannock preferred the Royal Aircraft Factory S.E.5a.

It was well-armed, fast, highly manoeuvrable and a superb gun platform, and yet it was easy and safe for even the most sketchily trained pilot to fly. The S.E.5a was deadly. Not only could it absorb punishment and turn on a penny, it packed a wallop with its .303 Vickers and .303 Lewis machine guns. Over 5,500 examples were produced in the war and Major Edward C. ‘Mick’ Mannock scored fifty of his seventy-three victories in the S.E.5a.

The S.E.5a helped turn the tide of war in the Allies’ favour. After the war, examples took part in air races and were employed in the ‘sky-writings’ industry for advertising purposes in both Britain and America. And today, all over the world, home-builders are producing reproductions of the S.E.5a for sport and leisure flying, a fitting tribute to a design now nearly a century old and an appropriate memorial to the thousands of pilots who flew it in combat in defence of their country.

THE AUTHOR

Paul R. Hare has made a lifelong study of early aviation with particular emphasis on the Royal Aircraft Factory at Farnborough and, in addition to writing books and articles, has lectured on the topic to numerous organisations both in England and the US. He has also been involved, at director level, with several aeroplane museums and, as a leading authority on the subject, acted as technical advisor on a number of restoration projects. Mount of Aces: The Royal Aircraft Factory S.E.5a is Hare’s second book for Fonthill Media after Fokker Fodder: The Royal Aircraft Factory B.E.2c.

FORMAT
Dimensions: 234 x 156 mm
Binding: hardback
Pages: 160
Illustrations: 120 b/w photographs

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Mount of Aces: The Royal Aircraft Factory S.E.5a

Product no.: 978-1-78155-288-9
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From the author of Fonthill Media’s Fokker Fodder: The Royal Aircraft Factory B.E.2c, Mount of Aces: The Royal Aircraft Factory S.E.5a is a fitting testament to a legendary fighter. Arguably, the Sopwith Camel may be the best known British fighter plane of the First World War that took on the mighty and feared Jastas over the killing fields that were the trenches. However, almost all the highest scoring aces including McCudden and Mannock preferred the Royal Aircraft Factory S.E.5a.

It was well-armed, fast, highly manoeuvrable and a superb gun platform, and yet it was easy and safe for even the most sketchily trained pilot to fly. The S.E.5a was deadly. Not only could it absorb punishment and turn on a penny, it packed a wallop with its .303 Vickers and .303 Lewis machine guns. Over 5,500 examples were produced in the war and Major Edward C. ‘Mick’ Mannock scored fifty of his seventy-three victories in the S.E.5a.

The S.E.5a helped turn the tide of war in the Allies’ favour. After the war, examples took part in air races and were employed in the ‘sky-writings’ industry for advertising purposes in both Britain and America. And today, all over the world, home-builders are producing reproductions of the S.E.5a for sport and leisure flying, a fitting tribute to a design now nearly a century old and an appropriate memorial to the thousands of pilots who flew it in combat in defence of their country.

THE AUTHOR

Paul R. Hare has made a lifelong study of early aviation with particular emphasis on the Royal Aircraft Factory at Farnborough and, in addition to writing books and articles, has lectured on the topic to numerous organisations both in England and the US. He has also been involved, at director level, with several aeroplane museums and, as a leading authority on the subject, acted as technical advisor on a number of restoration projects. Mount of Aces: The Royal Aircraft Factory S.E.5a is Hare’s second book for Fonthill Media after Fokker Fodder: The Royal Aircraft Factory B.E.2c.

FORMAT
Dimensions: 234 x 156 mm
Binding: paperback
Pages: 160
Illustrations: 120 b/w photographs

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Fokker Fodder: The Royal Aircraft Factory B.E.2c

Product no.: 978-1-78155-065-6
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Designed as the benchmark against which competitors in the 1912 Military Aeroplane Competition were judged, the B.E.2 outperformed them all and was put into production becoming the most numerous single type in Royal Flying Corps service. The B.E.2c, a later variant, was designed to be inherently stable and was nicknamed the ‘Quirk’ by its pilots. Intended mainly for reconnaissance, it was hopelessly outclassed by the Fokker Eindecker fighter and its defenceless crews quickly became known as ‘Fokker Fodder’. The Eindecker, piloted by top scoring German aces such as Max Immelmann and Oswald Boelcke, made short work of the B.E.2c in the aerial bloodbath coined as the ‘Fokker scourge’. Its vulnerability to fighter attack became plain back home and to the enemy who nicknamed the B.E.2c as kaltes fleisch or cold meat. British ace Albert Ball said that it was a ‘bloody terrible aeroplane’. B.E.2c crews were butchered in increasing numbers.

The B.E.2c slogged on throughout the war, and its poor performance against German fighters, and the failure to improve or replace it, caused great controversy in Britain. One MP attacked the B.E.2c and the Royal Aircraft Factory in the House of Commons stating that RFC pilots were being ‘murdered than killed.’ This resulted in a judicial enquiry that cleared the factory and was partly instrumental in bringing about the creation of the Royal Air Force.

THE AUTHOR

Paul R. Hare has made a lifelong study of early aviation with particular emphasis on the Royal Aircraft Factory at Farnborough and, in addition to writing books and articles, has lectured on the topic to numerous organisations both in England and the USA. Hare has been involved, at director level, with several aeroplane museums and, as a leading authority on the subject, have acted as technical advisor on a number of restoration projects.

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Britain’s Forgotten Fighters of the First World War

Product no.: 978-1-78155-197-4
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Those with any interest in the First World War will have have heard of the planes most associated with that conflict - the legendary Sopwith Camel and Royal Aircraft Factory’s S.E.5a, which are often called the ‘Spitfire’ and ‘Hurricane’ of the Great War. Aviation enthusiasts might even know of the Camel’s predecessors, the Sopwith Pup or the Triplane. But what of the many other planes that saw active service in the war?

This is the story of those armed aeroplanes whose names few people can recall, the ‘Forgotten Fighters’ of the First World War, including the pusher ‘gunbuses’ of the early war years, the strange ‘pulpit’ design of the B.E.9, the desperate conversions of reconnaissance machines that were never intended to be armed, and those which were thought too tricky for the average pilot to handle. It is also the story of the brave men who flew these machines, fighting, and too often dying, for a cause they believed in.

Some of these aeroplanes only served in small numbers and others in areas away from the main battle on the Western Front, but all made a vital contribution to the winning of the war. And these lost but iconic fighter aircraft, and the brave young men who flew them, deserve to be remembered just as much as the more famous aces in their legendary machines. This is their story.

THE AUTHOR

Paul R. Hare has made a lifelong study of early aviation with particular emphasis on the Royal Aircraft Factory at Farnborough and, in addition to writing books and articles, has lectured on the topic to numerous organisations both in England and the US. Hare has been involved, at director level, with several aeroplane museums and, as a leading authority on the subject, has acted as technical advisor on a number of restoration projects.

FORMAT
Dimensions: 234 x 156 mm
Binding: hardback
Pages: 224
Illustrations: 130 b/w photographs

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Hermann Goering in the First World War: The Personal Photograph Albums of Hermann Goering

Product no.: 978-1-62545-046-3
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When modern readers think of Hermann Goering, what probably comes to mind is the overweight drug addict and convicted war criminal who cheated the hangman's noose at Nuremberg by committing suicide just hours before he was due to die. Or perhaps there is the image of his powerful German air force in the Second World War – the Luftwaffe – bombing defenceless European cities and towns in the early part of the war, until it was defeated by the Royal Air Force in the epic Battle of Britain. Perhaps the reader might think of Goering the debauched art collector who pirated captured collections all over Nazi Europe during the Occupation years.

All of these images are correct, but here we see another Hermann Goering: the slim, dashing fighter pilot and combat ace of an earlier struggle, the Great War of 1914-18, which he began as an infantry officer fighting the French Army in the 1914 Battle of the Frontiers. During a hospitalization, his friend Bruno Lorzer convinced him to become an aerial observer-photographer, photographing the mighty French fortress of Verdun. He did, and began these never-before-seen personal photo albums of men and aircraft at war: up close.
This remarkable book – the first of an intimate series of photographic diaries – is an unique photographic record of the early years of this notorious figure.

THE AUTHOR

Blaine Taylor is the American author of twelve histories on war, politics, automotives, biography, engineering, architecture, medicine, photography, and aviation. The well-read historian is a former Vietnam War soldier and Military Policeman under enemy fire, political and crime newspaper reporter, award-winning medical journalist, international magazine writer, winner of four political campaigns as a press secretary, and a US Congressional aide on Capitol Hill, Washington, 1991-92.

FORMAT
Dimensions: 247 x 172 mm
Binding: hardback
Pages: 224
Illustrations: 348 b/w photographs

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A Flying Life: An Enthusiast’s Photographic Record of British Aviation in the 1930s

Product no.: 978-1-78155-087-8

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A Flying Life: An Enthusiast’s Photographic Record of British Aviation in the 1930s consists of photographs that were taken by E. J. Riding, the author’s father, who spent his working life in the aviation industry. He was apprenticed to A. V. Roe & Company and employed as an aircraft engineer up to the war. During the war, Riding became an AID inspector and was seconded to Fairey Aviation, London Aircraft Production and the de Havilland Aircraft Company, latterly signing out Halifax bombers and Mosquitoes as airworthy and ready for test flying. Sadly, Riding was killed in a flying accident in 1950.

During his short life, he gained a lasting reputation as an engineer, professional photographer, draughtsman and aero modeller. Riding began taking photographs of aircraft in 1931, aged fifteen. Fortunately, he kept copious notes recording the locations and dates of when and where aircraft were photographed. More importantly, he noted aircraft colour schemes, details rarely recorded by the press at the time. The aircraft types photographed by Riding ranged from the Tiger Moth, RAF fighters, ultra-lights to airliners, the whole giving a good cross-section of flying in Britain up to the outbreak of the Second World War.

The book’s photographs are of excellent quality and do not all consist of sterile bog-standard side views. Many depict aircraft being stripped for maintenance and servicing, others show aircraft dumped or after having crashed. Although approached in a generally light-hearted manner, the book features in-depth and informative captions.

THE AUTHOR

Richard Riding was born in 1942 and employed as an aerial photographer during 1958-62. He was a freelance photographer in 1962-71, specialising in aerial photography and photographing pop singers for Polydor Records. Riding joined the editorial staff of Flight International magazine in 1971-73 and founded Aeroplane Monthly in 1973. Previous books include Ultralights – The Early British Classics (Patrick Stephens, 1987), Elstree Aerodrome: An Illustrated History (co-written with Grant Peerless, 2003), Leavesden Aerodrome: From Halifaxes to Hogwarts (co-written with Grant Peerless, 2011). Plus hundreds of aviation articles published in Aeroplane Monthly.

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The Bad Boy: Bert Hall, Aviator and Mercenary of the Skies

Product no.: 978-1-78155-130-1
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Weston Birch (Bert) Hall carved out his place in history with an almost devilish delight. Much of what has been written about him, including his own two autobiographies, has proven over the years to be more fiction than reality. He was labelled numerous times in his career: rogue, scoundrel, card cheat, forger, human cannonball, First World War pilot, criminal, bigamist, deserter, filmmaker, author, soldier of fortune, hero, Chinese General, arms smuggler, Foreign Legionnaire, salesman, aerial racer, aviation pioneer, father, and entrepreneur. Oddly enough, these titles were all true. Bert Hall’s fantastic life and status as the bad boy of the Lafayette Escadrille have often eclipsed the truth.

Turning to primary sources in archives around the world, many that have been overlooked for decades, this book makes the first attempt to reconstruct the life of Bert Hall. For the first time aficionados of World War 1 aviation and aviation history will get a glimpse into the life of a man who lived in extraordinary times and took advantage of them. While Bert’s autobiographies were penned mostly to create a myth around his life, they often were based on kernels of truth. This book finds those kernels and paints the real-life picture of an amazing man who lived in incredible times.

As the elder man of the Lafayette Escadrille, Bert was basically run out of the squadron by his colleagues. That should have been the end of his story. In reality, it was just the beginning. In an age where the world was fascinated by aviators, Bert became a real-life comic book character – a mercenary of the skies!

THE AUTHOR

Blaine Pardoe is the author of numerous books in SF, military nonfiction, and business management genres. He has appeared on a number of national television and radio shows to speak about his books and has been a featured speaker at the US National Archives, the United States Navy Museum and the New York Military Affairs Symposium.

He is also a member of the League of World War 1 Aviation Historians. His books have even been mentioned in the US Congress. His books have been printed in six languages and he is recognised worldwide for his historical and fiction works.

FORMAT
Dimensions: 234 x 156 mm
Binding: hardback
Pages: 192
Illustrations: 16 b/w photographs

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Military Aviation of the First World War

Product no.: 978-1-78155-422-7
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This beautifully illustrated book provides details of every power that took part in Military aircraft activity during the First World War. The war was a global conflict with 57 nations involved but with aviation being in its infancy only eight nations had a major air arm to their fighting Services. The Allies: Britain, America, Italy, Belgium, France, and Russia and then the Central Powers comprising Germany and Austria - Hungary.

The book covers the formation, establishment and wartime exploits of all the major air powers during the war, as well as providing thumbnail sketches of all the major aces for each country, giving full coverage to: The Allies: The Royal Flying Corps, The French Military Air Service, The United States Air Service, Aeronautica de Region Esercito (Italy), The Belgian Air Arm, The Russian Imperial Air Services. The Central Powers: The Imperial German Air Service, and the Austro-Hungarian flying service However, smaller powers (at the time) like Australia, Canada and Japan as well as Portugal, Serbia, Romania and South Africa are all featured is this fascinating book.

FORMAT
Dimensions: 248 x 172 mm
Binding: paperback
Extent: 360 pages
Illustrations: 474 black-and-white photographs
 

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The RNAS and the Birth of the Aircraft Carrier 1914-1918

Product no.: 978-1-78155-365-7
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The Royal Naval Air Service (RNAS) origins were as the Naval Wing of the Royal Flying Corps in April 1912, but did not become a separate service until 1 July 1914. However, from the very beginning, the Naval Wing conducted itself as a distinct organisation. Its members commenced creating a dedicated arm of the Royal Navy with the intention of operating aircraft in support of and in association with the Fleet. On the outbreak of war in August 1914, the service quickly expanded to include service on land, initially in support of the Royal Naval Division in Belgium, later providing support to the Royal Flying Corps and as one of the early practitioners of strategic bombing.

However, The RNAS and the Birth of the Aircraft Carrier 1914-1918 principally traces the development and operational use of aircraft serving with the fleet. It follows the selection and training of personnel and the struggle to produce suitable aircraft and weapons, including the evolution of the aircraft carrier. Nonetheless, the constant thread throughout will be the operational history of the RNAS over the North Sea with both the Grand Fleet and Harwich Force. Commencing over the Zeppelin base at Cuxhaven on Christmas Day 1914 the ending with two pivotal operations which determined the future of naval aviation, including the raid on Tondern which saw the first instance of carrier-launched airtcraft.

The Royal Naval Air Service and the Royal Flying Corps merged in 1918 to become the RAF - yet those early years in World War One shaped the way that sea-based aircraft operated throughout the 20th Century - and beyond.

THE AUTHOR

Ian M. Burns worked in the aviation industry in the UK and Canada for forty-five years before retiring in 2012. For many of those years, he has been active in researching the history of British Naval Aviation during the First World War. He has written articles for Aeroplane Monthly, Cross and Cockade Journal, Over The Front and Jabberwock (The Journal of the Society of Friends of the Fleet Air Arm Museum). In 2008, Burns published a book on the history of the seaplane carrier HMS Ben-my-Chree that was selected as an Aeroplane Monthly Book of the Month.

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De Havilland and Hatfield: 1910-1935

Product no.: 978-1-78155-360-2
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The de Havilland Aircraft Co, already an international business, opened an aerodrome in 1930 on farmland which it acquired to the west of Hatfield. But significant events had already brought aircraft over the town, often de Havillands, for the past twenty years.

The company’s School of Flying was the first operation to take up residence. Flying clubs moved in and recreational facilities were developed. Garden parties, aerobatic displays and national air races were hosted. Regular visitors included famous flyers, royalty and aristocracy, actors and actresses, racing drivers, politicians, senior military ranks and representatives from Britain’s other great aircraft manufacturers.

Throughout 1934, new buildings were constructed to house de Havilland’s global headquarters, factory production and Aeronautical Technical School. The victory of the sleek, red Comet in the England-Australia air race that October would have lasting significance for the town, which grew to accommodate the de Havilland workforce. The legendary Tiger Moth and iconic airliners such as the Dragon Rapide came off the production lines.

Increasing numbers of RAF pilots were trained by the School of Flying while the garden parties, flying displays and air races continued. Military aircraft contracts were getting larger as long shadows from Europe reached the town.

THE AUTHOR

John Clifford has worked in corporate communications for the last fifteen years. The son of an RAE Farnborough apprentice, Clifford’s bedroom ceiling was covered with models, including the iconic Mosquito. He has lived most of his life in Norfolk surrounded by old RAF and USAAF stations. An early but clear memory is of passing the replica red Comet racer that fronted the Hatfield site. Clifford edited the English translations of Tor Idar Larsen’s Norwegian RAF pilot biographies in Viking Spitfire and Into the Swarm, both published by Fonthill Media.

DIMENSIONS
Format: 234 x 156 mm
Pages: 240
Illustrations: 175 b/w photographs and 33 colour photographs
 

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