On the 18th of June 1940, Churchill stood in Parliament and gave a speech in which he stated that what General Weyland had called the Battle of France was over and that the Battle of Britain was about to begin. In the middle of this remarkable conflict was one Raymond Towers Holmes…
Sir Winston Churchill
Preparations being made for the invasion of Britain
Joseph Kennedy, the US Ambassador to Great Britain
The Me 110
The Supermarine Spitfire
The Hawker Hurricane
The Me 109
Battle of Britain pilots
The coverage of Chain Home
Chain Home operators
Arty Holmes in his fighter
Dog fights over London during the Battle of Britain
Dornier Do 17s
The secret weapon flamethrower
The Do17 without its tail plunges down towards Victoria Station
Wreckage of the Do17 that Arty brought down
Images under Creative Commons licence with thanks to BiblioArchives, Bundesarchiv, the RAF, Wide World Photos, ROC, Adrian Pingstone, Imperial War Museum and the British Official Histories.
I was recently digging through some old airline paperwork and came across a delightful booklet from my old airline entitled Cabin Address from the Flight Deck – briefing notes and suggestions. The booklet is more than 20 years old so the content might, on occasions, fail to reflect current sensitivities but I thought it worth digging into so that I could share some of its suggestions with you.
Images with kind permission of cartoonist Capt John Reed AKA Figment.
Little Nellie was a rare breed of aviatrix the name of which has its origins in Ancient Greek. In more modern parlance, we have the familiar name autogyro… literally meaning self-turning. The way they work is the same way as a seed from a tree like a Sycamore flies and flying an autogyro is a novel form of taking to the air but one that saved 007!
Juan de la Cierva – the First Count.
The world’s first autogyro, Ciervas’s C1
A replica of the C6
The Cierva C9
The Pitcairn autogyro showing the rotor drive shaft
The RAF’s autogyro
A stamp commemorating the Russian TsAGI 1EA
The Fairy Rotordyne
The Bensen gyrocopter
Mailman Doug’s gyrocopter on the west lawn of the Capitol after he was taken into custody.
The Focke Wulf Fw-61
A modern autogyro
Images under Creative Commons licence with thanks to L’Aéronautique magazine, Pascual Marín, Gyromike, Diego Dabrio, Johannes Thinesen, NASA, Post of Soviet Union, NACA, Fair Use, Cheesy Mike and Asterion.
A continuation of the stories from Capt Nick’s RAF Form 414… his flying logbook.
BAe Nimrod MR2
The Old Pilot and a Bear
The Shackleton AEW2
A Canadian CL-28 Argus
The Avro Vulcan
The Skyflash semi active radar guided missile
An AQM37. The Stiletto was an air launched version.
A Skyflash missile firing from the F4 Phantom
Post missile firing treasure
Images under Creative Commons licence with thanks to The Old Pilot, Dale Coleman, Crown, Rob Schleiffert, USAF and an RAF Photographer.
Now a story about the US Navy Band may not seem to be my usual fare in Tales but bear with me and I must thank serving Band member and APG listener Tuba Tony for suggesting the topic for this story.
The United States Navy Ceremonial Band
The distant origin of the first Navy musicians.
The USS Macon
Eisenhower as a General and President
A US Navy DC6
The Bandsmen lost in the tragic crash
Images under Creative Commons licence with thanks to US Gov, Wiki Commons, US Navy, Library of Congress and the Washington Post.
There are many things that one might want to be remembered for. A fine physician, a pioneer aviator, a renown aeronautical researcher, an inspired inventor but perhaps not as the greatest charlatan ever to see his name associated with an airplane, even though his scout fighter the Christmas Bullet had a perfect kill record… it killed everyone who ever tried to fly it!
The AEA Redwing
One of Christmas’s Patents
The Christmas Bullet
The Christmas Bullet
The Liberty 6 Engine
Images under creative commons licence with thanks to the Library of Congress, US Gov, US Patent Office and the USAF.