The Little Blitz: The Luftwaffe's last attack on London


RAF Special Duties: Unique Sorties of the Second World War


Wars and Battles of the Roman Republic


The Fourth Reich and Operation Eclipse


The Lion and the Rose: The 4th Battalion The King’s Own Royal Lancaster Regiment 1914-1919


Onslaught on Hitler's Rhine: Operations Plunder and Varsity, March 1945


Waterloo: The Struggle for Hougoumont (In the words of those who witnessed the events of June 1815)


Everyday Life of a Soldier on Hadrian's Wall


The Last Great Cavalry Charge: The Battle of the Silver Helmets, Halen 12 August 1914


Thor Ballistic Missile: The United States and the United Kingdom in Partnership


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The Little Blitz: The Luftwaffe's last attack on London

Product no.: 978-1-78155-308-4
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The Little Blitz on London in the early part of 1944 is briefly mentioned in most accounts of the aerial war against the UK during the Second World War but is seldom deemed worthy of more than a few lines. The Little Blitz is the name applied to the air raids on Britain which were the manifestation of the Luftwaffe’s Operation Steinbock, planned in the last few months of 1943 and put into effect from the middle of January 1944.

The raids, planned as revenge for the destructive RAF raids on Berlin, mainly targeted London, and after nearly three years of respite from air raids, the Little Blitz was an unwelcome surprise for Londoners. The offensive was largely ineffective but some of the raids caused significant casualties and damage, and some alarm amongst the population and the authorities. This is the first account of the Little Blitz to explore these raids in detail and assess their impact on London. This book describes the raids, making use of some vivid personal accounts, to give a gripping picture of the effect that these little-known events had on a complacent city.

THE AUTHOR

John Conen was brought up in London and Worthing, and pursued a career in human resources management. He has a keen interest in London’s history and particularly its ordeal in World War 2. However he has a wide range of interests, having published ‘Bamberg and Franconia: Germany’s Brewing Heartland’ for which he was awarded the Budweiser Budvar John White Travel Bursary in the British Guild of Beer Writers’ 2010 awards. He has also published ‘Larkswood School 1906-2006’, celebrating the centenary of his primary school. John is married and lives in Buckinghamshire.

Format
Dimensions: 234 x 156 mm
Binding: paperback
Pages: 128
Illustrations: 22 b/w photographs

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RAF Special Duties: Unique Sorties of the Second World War

Product no.: 978-1-78155-304-6
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During the Second World War, the RAF employed Special Duties pilots and aircrew on operations across a wide range of extraordinary and daredevil missions. In many instances, specially selected and trained crews flew specific sorties, seeking out small targets of utmost importance to the war effort. A number of these operations were filmed by cameramen and RAF Special Duties: Unique Sorties of the Second World War enables their stories to be told for the first time.

The various exploits in this exceptionally well-researched and gripping book are supported, in many instances, by ‘Flying Logbooks’ and other materials stemming directly from the pilots themselves. These men were true originals - undertaking hugely dangerous missions against the odds, and often operating as individual aircraft in completely unknown conditions.Accounts in the book include:

  • Cameramen flying on special raids to film precise low level Mosquito sorties, including on the Gestapo HQ in Copenhagen.
  • A Mosquito pilot flying a single aircraft into Germany to cause disruption by setting off air raid sirens
  • A Stirling pilot flying with radar-jamming equipment to disguise the D-Day invasion
  • Mosquito pilots attacking targets identified by British SAS units in France
  • Experience as a wireless operator flying in Churchill's personal aircraft
  • Dropping supplies over Burma


THE AUTHOR

Colin Pateman lives in the south of England and has spent most of his working life as a police officer, retiring after thirty-two years’ service. His key roles were as a handler of specialist search dogs and as a police search advisor. He was trained by the Royal Engineers and was involved in many serious criminal investigations. Pateman is an avid collector of aviation memorabilia and gains great satisfaction from gathering and preserving personal accounts of pilots and aircrews of the Second World War. His other aviation related publications include Goldfish, Caterpillars and Guinea Pigs (Fonthill Media, 2012) Unwanted Hero (Fonthill Media, 2012), Unshackled Spirit (Fonthill Media, 2013) and Glorious in Solitude (Fonthill Media, 2013).

FORMAT
Dimensions: 234 x 156 mm
Binding: hardback
Pages: 224
Illustrations: 111 b/w photographs

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Wars and Battles of the Roman Republic

Product no.: 978-1-78155-305-3
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Wars and Battles of the Roman Republic covers the decisive battles from the founding of Rome in 753 BC to the Battle of Actium in 28 BC, taking in, for example, legendary battles such as 497 BC – Battle of Lake Regillus; 482 BC – Battle of Antium; 480 BC – Battle of Veii; the Samnite Wars; 261-146 BC – the three Punic Wars against Carthage (Hannibal and Hasdrubal); 191 BC – Battle of Thermpolyae; Battle of Corinth; the Macedonian wars; 89 BC – the Social Wars; 85 BC – the Mithridatic Wars; the Civil Wars; 72 BC – the Spartacus Revolt; Battle of Carrhae; 48 BC – Battle of Pharsalus; 42 BC Battles of Philippi; 41 BC – Battle of Perugia; and 31 – BC Battle of Actium (Cleopatra).

The book examines events leading up to these conflicts and the social and political consequences as well as the military aspects. Each had wide-ranging consequences leading Rome from kingdom to republic, from local power to international superpower, and from republic to empire. It makes full use of the accounts of historians and political writers, contemporary and otherwise, including Livy, Sallust, Caesar, Cicero, Polybius, Plutarch and Dio including sculptural and architectural evidence. The unique feature of the book is its focus on the causes of the wars and battles and the socio-political consequences of each for Rome and its allies.

THE AUTHOR

Paul Chrystal is an author of more than twenty-five books and a broadcaster. Ten of his books are on York including A History of Chocolate in York  (2012) and The Rowntree Family of York (2013). He writes articles for national newspapers and regularly appears on the BBC World Service and BBC Local Radio. He is married with three children and lives near York. He was eductaed in Classics at the University Hull and the University of Southampton where he obtained his M.Phil.

FORMAT
Dimensions: 234 x 156 mm
Binding: paperback
Pages: 176
 

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The Fourth Reich and Operation Eclipse

Product no.: 978-1-78155-400-5
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In this third volume on the progress of the Second World War after the D-Day landings, Patrick Delaforce examines the final weeks of World War Two, beyond the Yalta Conference, when the question to be asked was not who would win, but how to prevent the war dragging on and also how to prevent Hitler from implementing a scorched earth policy across the Reichland. Then there was the race to win territory as the Russians, too, clawed their way across Europe. Operation Eclipse, begun in March1945, both prevented the Russians from occupying Denmark in violation of the agreement at Yalta but also occupied the Kiel naval base. The book also examines events immediately after the surrender and Hitler's suicide, and the creation of the short-lived fourth reich under the leadership of Admiral Donitz. As well as Denmark, the book also covers the liberations of both Holland and Norway.

Most poignant of all, the liberation of the prisoners of war is covered as well as the freeing those that had toiled for Hitler against their will, as slaves. The book ends with the famous war crimes trials and the beginnings of the Cold War.

THE AUTHOR

Patrick Delaforce served as a troop leader in Normandy with the Royal Horse Artillery of the 11th Armoured Division. Hitler's Wehrmacht blew him up with their mines in Holland, and he was again wounded by a rifle grenade on the banks of the River Elbe. He was with the first battle group into Bergen-Belsen concentration camp in April 1945, was twice mentioned in despatches, and was awarded the Bronze Cross of Orange-Nassau. Finally, he was an official British Army of the Rhine witness when Mr Albert Pierrepoint, the British hangman, executed 13 convicted war criminals in Hameln.

FORMAT
Dimensions: 234 x 156 mm
Binding: paperback
Pages: 320
Illustrations: 119 black-and-white photographs

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The Lion and the Rose: The 4th Battalion The King’s Own Royal Lancaster Regiment 1914-1919

Product no.: 978-1-78155-438-8
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The Lion and the Rose tells the story of an infantry battalion in the Great War. Based on many unpublished sources, the book narrates the individual parts played by nearly 2,000 of those who served with the 4th King’s Own (Royal Lancaster) Regiment from the day that war was declared in 1914 until the armistice in 1918 and in a few cases, the stories of men whose war continued long afterwards. The battalion first saw action in Festubert in May 1915 and went on to fight on the Somme, the Ypres Salient and Gillemont Farm, though the battalion’s epic stand at Givenchy on 9 April 1918 must rate as one of the greatest defensive actions of the war.

Using contemporary combat reports, many of the major actions are described down to individual platoon level. The Lion and the Rose does not just concentrate on the major battles, but also examines everyday life in the trenches. Appendices give the most complete battalion roll to date and list those awarded medals for their bravery and also those nominated unsuccessfully for recognition.

THE AUTHOR

Kevin Shannon was educated at St Edward's College and Liverpool University. Shannon spent ten years in the Army, serving in a number of regiments and taught history for many years in a secondary school. Over the years, he has spent his spare time racing and rallying cars; martial arts; instructing and competing in practical pistol shooting; and piloting light aircraft. Shannon is a long-term member of the urban search and rescue team, International Rescue Corps, and since 2004, is currently their assistant operational director.

FORMAT
Dimensions: 234 x 156 mm
Binding: hardback
Pages: 400
Illustrations: 28 black-and-white photographs and 13 in-text maps

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Onslaught on Hitler's Rhine: Operations Plunder and Varsity, March 1945

Product no.: 978-1-78155-441-8
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Operation Plunder was Field Marshal Bernard Montgomery’s swan song. It is rarely mentioned in the Second World War history books, and when it is, both American and British military historians dismiss it as being ultra-cautious.

Monty was by nature a cautious commander with dwindling manpower resources. Operation Market Garden in September 1944 had not been successful in achieving a major lodgement over the Rhine. Monty knew that Hitler regarded the Rhine as his final barrier, and his storm-troopers and paratroops had fought like demons for four weeks in February/March 1945 defending the Siegfried Line in Operations Veritable and Blockbuster. Presumably they would continue to defend their own country to the bitter end. So, in command of a British, a Canadian and an American army Monty ensured by very careful planning, including a huge airborne drop in Operation Varsity, that the great onslaught would be furious, quick, ruthless and highly successful. And so it was.

Patrick Delaforce fought in Blockbuster, Plunder and all the river battles in his armoured battle group, which reached the Danish frontier just before Stalin’s Cossacks.The book is part of a Fonthill trilogy by Delaforce: Monty’s Rhine Adventure (Market Garden); and Invasion of the Third Reich (the campaign after Plunder).

THE AUTHOR

Patrick Delaforce was educated at Winchester College. He served as a troop leader in Normandy with the Royal Horse Artillery of the 11th Armoured Division. He was with the first battle group into Bergen-Belsen concentration camp in April 1945, was twice mentioned in despatches, and was awarded the Bronze Cross of Orange-Nassau. In autumn 1945 he served on a War Crimes Tribunal in Hamburg and tried many concentration camp guards. Finally, he was an official British Army of the Rhine witness when Mr Albert Pierrepoint, the British hangman, executed 13 convicted war criminals in Hameln on 13 December 1945. After leaving the army, he worked as a port wine shipper and ran an advertising agency in New York, before becoming a professional writer, mainly on historical and military subjects. 40 books by him have been published with 100 editions.

FORMAT
Dimensions: 234 x 156 mm
Binding: hardback
Pages: 240
Illustrations: 194 black-and-white photographs and maps


 

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Waterloo: The Struggle for Hougoumont (In the words of those who witnessed the events of June 1815)

Product no.: 978-1-78155-478-4

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This highly detailed new book provides a comprehensive account of the fighting at the Château of Hougoumont on Sunday 18th June 1815, by utilising the accounts of the officers and men who fought in the Battle of Waterloo. Drawn predominantly from contemporary manuscript sources, it contains a wealth of previously unpublished material, including significant new information from the French and German archives.

Extensive new research has revealed that the French made a number of incursions into the farm complex, that the allies sustained critical losses during the fighting in the orchard, and that there were repeated attempts in the early evening by the garrison to secure more ammunition.

The authoritative text is supplemented by a series of notes and appendices, and is enhanced by ten colour scenes and full colour contour maps with troop overlays, thereby making the book an essential addition to every Napoleonic collection.

THE AUTHOR

John Franklin is a professional military historian based in Switzerland who specialises in the Napoleonic period, and the Waterloo campaign in particular. A Fellow of the International Napoleonic Society (FINS), and a graduate of the University of Bern, he has been engaged in one of the most comprehensive investigations into the campaign ever undertaken, with the aim of providing a wealth of previously unpublished material. He is the author of acclaimed books of Waterloo correspondence on the Hanoverian and Netherlands armies, and has acted as historical consultant on the BBC Production entitled: Waterloo – The Soldiers’ Stories.

FORMAT
Dimensions: 248 x 172
Binding: hardback
Pages: 256
Illustrations: 60 colour illustrations
 

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Everyday Life of a Soldier on Hadrian's Wall

Product no.: 978-1-78155-364-0
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Walk the Wall, gaze northwards across hostile territory, man the turrets and milecastles… What was life like for the Roman troops stationed on Hadrian’s Wall? Follow the life of one man, a Tungrian soldier, through recruitment, training, garrison duty and war. Focussing on a single point in time and one fort on the Wall, we explore every aspect of military life on this bleak and remote frontier. Where was he born? What did he spend his money on? How did he fight? What did he eat? Did he have lice or fleas?

Archaeology and the accounts of ancient writers come together to paint a vivid picture of a soldier on the Wall soon after its completion in AD 130. Historical reconstruction and experimentation fill in the gaps that are left. Step back into the past, step into the marching boots of Tungrian soldiers as they patrol Rome’s greatest frontier.

THE AUTHOR

Paul Elliott has a degree in ancient history and archaeology and writes books on military history. Previous titles include Legions in Crisis: Transformation of the Roman Soldier AD 192-286 (Fonthill Media 2013), The Last Legionary: Life as a Roman Soldier in Britain AD 400, Warrior Cults: A History of Magical, Mystical and Murderous Organisations and Vietnam: Conflict and Controversy. He has also written articles on Roman military history for Ancient Warfare magazine. Elliot has been involved in historical reconstructions for the past decade and lives in East Yorkshire.

FORMAT
Dimensions: 234 x 156 mm
Binding: hardback
Extent: 176 pages
Illustrations: 21 black-and-white drawings and maps and 34 colour illustrations

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The Last Great Cavalry Charge: The Battle of the Silver Helmets, Halen 12 August 1914

Product no.: 978-1-78155-183-7
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The First World War saw many changes to the way that warfare was conducted. Today, it is hard to believe that the use of cavalry was still seriously contemplated in 1914.

However, the Battle of the Silver Helmets at Halen, on 12 August 1914, had been orchestrated on the previous successes of the cavalry of Frederick the Great. It was staged so that the German Fourth Cavalry Division would charge into glory with sabres rattling. Instead, twenty-four German officers, 468 men, and 843 horses were lost during no less than eight separate charges conducted on that day. The entire right wing of the Imperial German Army included only nine cavalry brigades in the well-known Schlieffen Plan, and two of those brigades were decimated in this one battle. The battle has not been explored in detail in the English language, as it took place before the British Expeditionary Force landed in the channel ports and well before any American involvement. Furthermore, British historians have generally focused on Germany’s efforts to enter Belgium through the forts at Liège, which are east of Halen. However, the Battle of the Silver Helmets destroyed a century-old cavalry tradition. An understanding of the battle explains why large-scale cavalry charges would never again be attempted on the Western Front.

THE AUTHORS

Joe and Janet Robinson are retired colonels from the US Armed Forces and have authored several books. Their last work was The Great War Dawning. Both are graduates of the US Army War College. They are married to each other, retired, and they live in San Antonio, Texas.

Francis Hendriks is a military history enthusiast. After thirty-two years in the Belgian Army, he and his wife Sabine live in the picturesque town of Veurne in Flanders, Belgium. All of the authors have spent time together combing the battlefield at Halen.

FORMAT
Dimensions: 234 x 156 mm
Binding: hardback
Extent: 176 pages
Illustrations: 37 black-and-white photographs - 25 maps
 

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Thor Ballistic Missile: The United States and the United Kingdom in Partnership

Product no.: 978-1-78155-481-4
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Faced with worrying advances in Soviet missile technology, in the mid-1950s the United States sought to develop an IRBM to act as a stop-gap until the Atlas ICBM became operational. Intense inter-service rivalry followed before the US Air Force gained the upper hand. The UK, keen to improve its ‘special relationship’ with the US and soon smarting from the Suez Crisis, agreed to accept sixty Thor missiles to be operated by RAF crews. Complex negotiations followed and once sites were identified, American personnel, both civilian and military, crossed the Atlantic to build and commission the bases. Meanwhile, some 1,300 RAF personnel travelled to America to learn the complexities of the Thor system and make a series of twenty-one launches from Vandenberg Air Force Base.

Covering activities on both sides of the pond, Thor Ballistic Missile: The United States and the United Kingdom in Partnership is a thoroughly researched, documented account of the USAAF and RAF’s collaboration, featuring a number of previously unpublished photographs, plans, and diagrams of the missile sites and equipment, and the anecdotes of the servicemen who took part in this exchange.

THE AUTHOR

John Boyes was born in Edinburgh in 1947. Educated at Rugby School, he qualified as a chartered accountant in 1972 and thereafter pursued a career in the motor industry until his retirement in 2005. He has had a lifelong interest in the history of missiles and published his first book, Project Emily: Thor IRBM and the RAF, in 2008. He is the treasurer of the Royal Air Force Historical Society and financial controller of the Bomber Command Association, responsible for the financial management of its memorial in London. He has given a number of lectures on Thor and regularly contributed to the British Nuclear History meetings at Charterhouse. He is married and lives in West Wickham, Kent.

FORMAT
Dimensions: 234 x 156 mm
Binding: hardback
Extent: 240 pages
Illustrations: 70 black-and-white illustrations and profiles
 

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