Voices In Flight Series - Vintage Airfix


Voices in Flight series of books

All these titles are available to purchase from Pen and Sword.

Contents:
- Voices in Flight: Daylight Bombing Operations 1939 - 1942 - By Martin Bowman..
- Voices in Flight: Escaping Soldiers and Airmen of World War I - By Martin Bowman..
- Voices in Flight: Path Finder Force - By Martin Bowman..
- Voices in Flight: RAF Escapers and Evaders in WWII - By Martin Bowman..
- Voices in Flight: RAF Fighter Pilots in WW II - By Martin Bowman..
- Voices in Flight: RAF Night Operations - By Martin Bowman..
- Voices in Flight: The Dambuster Squadron - By Colin Higgs, Bruce Vigar..
- Voices in Flight: The Fleet Air Arm - By Malcolm Smith..
- Voices in Flight: The Heavy Bomber Offensive of WWII - By Martin Bowman..
- Voices in Flight: The Night Air War - By Martin Bowman..
- Voices in Flight: The Royal Naval Air Service During the Great War - By Malcolm Smith..
- Voices in Flight: The Wellington Bomber - By Martin Bowman..

 


 

Result Pages:  1  Displaying 1 to 12 (of 12 Books)

Voices in Flight: Daylight Bombing Operations 1939 - 1942

By Martin Bowman

Voices in Flight: Daylight Bombing Operations 1939 - 1942Description:

There are no records of war more valuable than the first-hand accounts of the individuals who were actually there. The vivid honesty of the stories on display here brings into sharp focus the personal fears as well as the sheer exhilaration of flying sorties by day, often through heavy flak, sometimes at hedge-hopping or wave- skimming heights, as the squadrons of Blenheims, Mosquitoes, Mitchells and Venturas swept across the Continent towards their targets.

From the outbreak of the Second World War to the eve of VE Day, the medium bomber crews of 2 Group RAF and 2nd Tactical Air Force flew vital operations over Europe. Here their story is told, month by perilous month, often in the words of the airmen themselves, their accounts supported by meticulous research. Their exploits include the first sorties of the war, the famous Operation Oyster to bomb the Philips works at Eindhoven and other low-level pinpoint attacks against key targets in occupied Europe and Scandinavia. 

While sharing in the triumph of their bombing successes, we are not spared details of the appalling sacrifices and the failed and aborted raids. These details are relayed in a series of poignant personal snapshots, highlighting the extraordinary valour of these ordinary men. Remarkable photographs include aerial views of targets under attack, as well as dramatic portraits of the aircraft involved. This book serves as a moving tribute to the efforts of the pilots involved in some of the most perilous daylight bombing operations of the Second World War.

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Voices in Flight: Escaping Soldiers and Airmen of World War I

By Martin Bowman

Voices in Flight: Escaping Soldiers and Airmen of World War IDescription:

This thrilling new volume from Martin Bowman focusses on British, Canadian, Australian and German soldiers and airmen who were captured during the First World War. Determined that they wouldn’t spend the rest of the conflict incarcerated uselessly behind bars, they endeavoured to escape. These are their stories.

All aspects of prison life are covered here, and the author examines the various escape tactics that were employed by British soldiers and airmen held in PoW camps all over Germany and Turkey. In order to provide a balanced account, the author has also uncovered stories of German navy and army escapees who attempted to flee from England.

Each chapter is preceded by an account which explains the types of camps used in Britain and Germany, the numbers involved, the food, the camp money system for worker prisoners and a general appreciation of the conditions and chronology. First-hand accounts from the prisoners themselves are then woven into the picture, creating an authentic sense of the PoW experience.

The emphasis of this unique book is placed on the human story of the main characters, the unparalleled action on the Western Front and the interaction and camaraderie experienced between soldiers and airmen held in prison camps in England, Germany and Turkey during the First World War.

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Voices in Flight: Path Finder Force

By Martin Bowman

Voices in Flight: Path Finder ForceDescription:

Charged with the formidable task of locating and marking German targets for attack by the main force of Bomber Command, the Path Finder Force - 8 (PFF) Group and those in 5 Group - was perhaps the most experienced and highly trained elite group created within the Royal Air Force during World War II. Its aircrew members were almost entirely volunteers and despite the terrifying odds against any individual (or complete crew) ever completing the sixty-sorties tour of operations with the PFF, the most feared ‘punishment' was to forfeit their coveted Path Finder wings and be posted away to other units.

This remarkable evocation of a remarkable force is made up largely of narrative and photographs from the men who flew with or were an integral part of the PFF. They alone are best qualified to recount the Path Finder story.

While the subject matter herein largely covers the four-engined Stirlings, Halifaxes and Lancasters and twin-engined Mosquitoes of 8 (PFF) Group, the Path Finding techniques used by 5 Group are not forgotten and there are two chapters detailing the work of the ‘Oboe’ Mosquitoes and other markers in support of the night and day Main Force raids on German and Italian cities and individual targets in the Reich.

This book is a fitting tribute to the PFF and in particular, to the crews who failed to return from the PFF's many operations.

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Voices in Flight: RAF Escapers and Evaders in WWII

By Martin Bowman

Voices in Flight: RAF Escapers and Evaders in WWIIDescription:

During the Second World War, 156 RAF men successfully escaped from German PoW camps in Western Europe. A further 1,975 men evaded capture after having been shot down over this same territory. Martin Bowman has drawn together tales of just a handful of these men, illustrating the bravery and resourcefulness that characterised their experiences. British, American, and Canadian pilot testimonies all feature, as does the fascinating story of a female secret agent, parachuted behind enemy lines. By bringing these stories together, Bowman is able to capture an authentic sense of the times at hand and the reality of life as an escaper/evader during this tumultuous and incredibly dangerous time. This is an entertaining publication set to keep readers on the edge of the seats, and it serves as a tribute to the courageous individuals who found themselves behind enemy lines during the Second World War.

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Voices in Flight: RAF Fighter Pilots in WW II

By Martin Bowman

Voices in Flight: RAF Fighter Pilots in WW IIDescription:

This is a pulsating account of the young RAF fighter boys who flew Spitfires, Hurricanes and Defiants in England against the Luftwaffe and from Malta 1940-45 against the Regia Aeronautica. Their story is told using combat reports and first person accounts from RAF, German and Commonwealth pilots who fought in the skies in France in 1940, in England during the Battle of Britain, and in the great air offensives over Occupied Europe from 1942 onwards.

Chapters include the stories of Wing Commander D. R. S. Bader, Wing Commander Adolph Gysbert 'Sailor' Malan, Oberleutnant Ulrich Steinhilper, Flight Lieutenant H. M. Stephen, Squadron Leader Robert Stanford Tuck, 'Johnny' Johnson, Squadron Leader M. N. Crossley, Squadron Leader A. McKellar, 'Cowboy' Blatchford and Squadron Leader D. H. Smith, an Australian veteran of the Battle of Malta and many others whose names have now become legendary.

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Voices in Flight: RAF Night Operations

By Martin Bowman

Voices in Flight: RAF Night OperationsDescription:

'The Navy can lose us the war, but only the Air Force can win it. Therefore our supreme effort must be to gain overwhelming mastery in the air. The Fighters are our salvation but the Bombers alone provide the means of victory...'

So said Prime Minister Winston Churchill to the War Cabinet on the first anniversary of the outbreak of war. But when Britain declared war on Germany in September 1939 her bombers were predominantly twin-engined types like the Wellington, Whitley and the Hampden which after suffering carnage during the day were soon switched to night operations.

Wartime speeches alone cannot begin to describe the misery and fortitude, desperation and terror endured by the civilian population during the 'Blitz Nights' in Coventry, the London docklands and the East End as night after night bombs and incendiaries rained down on them. Their personal experiences and those of war correspondents like James Negley Farson are as vivid, poignant and descriptive as those of the bomber crews carrying the war to the enemy in the early night bomber offensive. These too are mostly recounted at first hand, sometimes in BBC broadcasts to the nation; and they include 'The Unanswerable Double'; 'Winged Words'; 'German Defences'; 'Getting Frightened'; 'Jump For It!'; 'The Night The Fuel Ran Out'; 'Flames, Flares and Fires'; 'Busted Flush'; 'The Tail Gunner's Story' and 'Hampden and 'Wimpy' Ops'. They tell just what it was like to fly in a heavy bomber over occupied Europe.

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Voices in Flight: The Dambuster Squadron

By Colin Higgs, Bruce Vigar

Voices in Flight: The Dambuster SquadronDescription:

They were the Dambusters – the pilots and crew of the RAF's elite 617 Squadron. They flew the most difficult missions. They breached the Dams! They sank the Tirpitz! They were the only squadron to drop the immense Grand Slam bombs and with them they destroyed bridges, viaducts and even Hitler's impregnable U-boat pens.

In this unique book, introduced by Dams raid survivor, George 'Johnny' Johnson, authors Colin Higgs and Bruce Vigar present no less than nine exclusive interviews with men who flew and fought in 617 Squadron during the Second World War. These men took part in virtually every operation the Squadron flew and went on some of the most daring and dangerous missions of the war. The result is one of the most vivid and unforgettable accounts of the RAF at war ever written.

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Voices in Flight: The Fleet Air Arm

By Malcolm Smith

Voices in Flight: The Fleet Air ArmDescription:

The author Malcolm Smith has been the Editor of Jabberwock, the quarterly journal of the Society of Friends of the Fleet Air Arm Museum, for two years and has inherited the complete archive of editions dating back to the formation of SOFFAAM in 1979. In browsing through these, it quickly became apparent to him that they provided a unique archive of reminiscence of the men and some of the women who served in, or have been associated with, the Fleet Air Arm since its formation in 1918. The Fleet Air Arm were the branch of the British Royal Navy responsible for the operation of naval aircraft, and its history is a varied one as these accounts attest.

The Royal Navy, in common with the other armed services, expanded enormously during the Second World War, so anecdotes from this period naturally predominate. To illustrate the varied experiences of the contributors, these are grouped into “War in the West” and “War in the East”. Whether drawn from peace or war, however, what emerges from these pages is a particular spirit, peculiar to the Fleet Air Arm and reflecting its somewhat hybrid nature; a spirit derived from a high level of professional competence combined with a certain irreverence towards Authority.

As seen in the 14th Carrier Air Group Reunion Association Newsletter.

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Voices in Flight: The Heavy Bomber Offensive of WWII

By Martin Bowman

Voices in Flight: The Heavy Bomber Offensive of WWIIDescription:

This book contains fourteen stirring accounts, each conveying an authentic sense of what it was really like to fly as a member of air-crew during the various bombing operations of the Second World War. The storytellers are an eclectic mix of pilots, navigators, bomb aimers, wireless operators and gunners who flew on operations in heavy bombers. It conveys the terror of being coned by German searchlights over the target, attacks by Luftwaffe night-fighters, often catastrophic damage to aircraft and the ensuing struggle to keep the machine airborne on the return trip to base. It tells of the comradeship between the crew and the humour between them, often borne of fear. The gentle and unassuming narratives include 'Millennium'; 'One of Our Aircraft Is Missing'; Bomber's Moon; 'Bombing Berlin' 'The Ordeal Of Pilot Officer Romans DFC'; Last Man Out' operations on Whitleys and Halifaxes; Flying Officer 'X'; Stirlings; 'Rescue At Sea' 'The Incendiary Load's Alight'; 'The Night Of The Bombs' and 'The Kassel Raids of 1943' as well as BBC Broadcasts and stories by Allied war correspondents. Each of these accounts conveys the sense of purpose that these men felt in doing one of the most dangerous jobs of the war. It is a fitting tribute to those that survived and the many thousands who died in the struggle against Hitler's dreadful ambitions in Europe.

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Voices in Flight: The Night Air War

By Martin Bowman

Voices in Flight: The Night Air WarDescription:

Of the 7,953 Bomber Command aircraft lost on night operations during the Second World War, an estimated 5,833 fell victim to Luftwaffe night fighters. In this detailed re-enactment of the air war over Western Europe and the raids flown by the men of RAF Bomber Command, the author has pieced together official data and the words and memories of the pilots and air crew who participated in the proceedings. Across fifteen chapters, many unique experiences are regaled, enlivening the history of the night bombing raids that were hurled against Hitler's war machine during the latter half of the Second World War. They span the period between November 1943 and 1945 and cover the encounters between the Luftwaffe and RAF Bomber Command during their heyday. 

'No Operation Was Easy' was a commonly coined phrase amongst this group who, night after night, struck out at targets such as the 'The Big City' (Berlin), Stuttgart and the Ruhr. These truly epic stories, gleaned from the memories of the men who made up Bomber Command, serve as an appropriate epitaph to their collective effort.

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Voices in Flight: The Royal Naval Air Service During the Great War

By Malcolm Smith

Voices in Flight: The Royal Naval Air Service During the Great WarDescription:

Following in the same style as his previous book of Fleet Air Arm recollections, Malcolm Smith has collected a compendium of reminiscences from pilots who flew for the Royal Navy and the Royal Marines during the First World War. He includes first-hand testimonies from pilots manning early seaplane stations, an enthralling account from F.J. Rutland (the 'Rutland of Jutland'), who became the first pilot to take off in a Sopwith Pup from a platform on the roof of one of HMS Yarmouth's gun turrets, the true tale behind Rudyard Kipling's short story 'A Flight of Fact' (concerning Guy Duncan-Smith's experience of becoming marooned in the Maldives following a dramatic shoot-down), amongst many other personalized and illuminating stories. 

All these anecdotes are drawn from the extensive archive maintained by the Fleet Air Arm Museum at Yeovilton, Somerset. The archive contains an enormous quantity of material, in the form of handwritten diaries, transcripts, log books and documentation of many kinds. Alongside the written material, the Museum maintains an unrivaled photographic archive and a representative sample of these images is included in the book.

Excerpts from diaries, transcripts of spoken first-hand accounts and other recorded narratives make up the bulk of the book, with whole chapters dedicated to some of the most vocal members to see service during the course of the RNAS's Great War history. Guy Leather, a pilot destined to track an impressive trajectory with the RNAS features in one such chapter; his day to day accounts relay the full gamut of pilot experience at this time. 

This humane and thoughtful consolidation of pilot reflections is sure to appeal broadly, particularly as we approach the one hundredth year anniversary of the First World War.

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Voices in Flight: The Wellington Bomber

By Martin Bowman

Voices in Flight: The Wellington BomberDescription:

The Wellington Bomber was omnipresent during the Second World War, employed in a variety of contexts in the fight against the Axis powers. The pilots who flew this aircraft did so with an immense amount of pride, and there is perhaps no-one better placed to tell the story of this incredible aircraft than these men. Martin Bowman has drawn together a selection of first-hand pilot testimonies in an effort to record authentically the experience of flying the much-mythologised Wellington during one of the most challenging eras of aviation history. The book is supplemented by two plate sections of stirring black and white images.

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