F**king f**k! I know you’ve probably seen this clip before (and if you haven’t you’re in for a treat!) but I just couldn’t spend a month celebrating Spitfires and not include it. It never gets old. I’m sure the presenter, noted racing driver Alain de Cadenet, has never forgotten his brush with that high-performance vehicle! It’s fun to note that the Spitfire was climbing by the … Continue reading The inimitable Mr. Hanna
1940: The Battles To Stop Hitler by Mitch Peeke (Pen & Sword e-book) I’ve done a few reviews for Pen & Sword lately (with more in the pipeline) and, by way of thanks, they’ve provided me with a copy of 1940: The Battles To Stop Hitler to give away. UPDATE: This contest is now closed and the winner has been contacted. We’ll be giving away more books … Continue reading Win this book!
airscape has a long-standing tension with poetry. I like it, but I know a lot of other people like it less. And so I restrain myself. Usually. The following clip is simply too good to miss though. And while the star of the show is undoubtedly the English Electric Lightning, Hawker Hunters and Slingsby Swallow sailplanes also feature. There’s also a wonderful PoV sequence of … Continue reading Write flyers
Flight From Colditz by Tony Hoskins Published by Frontline Books (Pen & Sword Books), 2016. I used to think I was well-informed for knowing that the World War Two POWs of Offizierslager or “Oflag” IV-C – the infamous Colditz Castle – had built a two-man glider in the attic of their prison before they were liberated by the 1st US Army in April 1945. And … Continue reading Over the walls
I came across an amazing image when I was preparing an earlier post, Without A Trace. Even then, I knew I wouldn’t be able to let it rest with a 20 word caption. It was of a Mosquito – a truly great aircraft that is familiar fare for airscape. But much as I’ve studied the DH98 – the ‘Wooden Wonder’; the ‘Timber Terror’ – I’d … Continue reading Bang!
With the B-17’s brave but beleaguered WW2 service in the Pacific and its epic contribution to victory in Europe, along with the B-24’s ubiquitous duty in every corner of the conflict, it would be easy to forget that the RAF also operated both types. Indeed the British were the first to use the American heavies in anger, and their combat experience would profoundly shape the development and … Continue reading Heavy going (Pt.1)
In Heavy Going, Part One I shared a British pilot’s impressions of flying the RAF’s “American heavies” during World War Two. However it’s never easy to understand which B-17 and B-24 models the British used when. They didn’t simply follow the American alphabetical system, and the Mark numbers they did use were largely assigned in the order that the purchase agreements crossed some overworked Whitehall clerk’s desk. Still, an outline of … Continue reading Heavy going (Pt.2)
As so often happens, I was prepping a post on one topic when I spotted something completely different. In this case, a short but poignant article from the October 18th, 1945 issue of Flight magazine… Missing Airmen One of the biggest jobs now facing the Royal Air Force is the effort to trace missing airmen. Since the beginning of the war in Europe there have … Continue reading Without a trace
Early on the morning of September 27th, 1943, the distinctive baritone thunder of a Merlin engine rose over the base of No.410 Night Fighter Squadron RCAF, at Coleby Grange, Lincolnshire. This was a Mosquito base, so the sound of a single Merlin was nearly always bad news. A Mosquito was difficult enough to land with both turning. But the crew of this particular … Continue reading Close Call