A damp, soggy sandbank is not the ideal runway, but Pilot Officer Mike Hickling was using one as he battled to coax his Gladiator into the air. And, to make matters worse, a mate of his was lying flat on the wing, holding on like grim death. All this with a German launch slamming over […]
The Bristol Beaufighter packed an awesome punch with its arsenal of machine guns and cannons. Turned against an enemy, it was a lethal weapon of war. But one Beaufighter pilot, Andy Shaw, knew to his cost that it could be just as deadly against a friendly target hit by mistake…
Ferrying a V.I.P. to England from North Africa might sound like a simple enough mission, but not when it’s a worn-out old bomber only fit for the scrapheap that you’re given to do the job. And it doesn’t help when your Very Important Passenger panics at the first sign of an enemy aircraft… or when […]
Tactics had changed, machines had improved, but Group Captain Roland Bird knew from his Great War experiences that efficiency came with practice and attention to detail. His new command could expect a hard taskmaster, especially the crew of Wellington S-Sugar, who had crashed his car at their first meeting.
In the air war over Russia Anton Pozetski found life dangerous and confusing. It was easy to identify the enemy — they were the Germans and they shot at you. However, it wasn’t so easy to identify your friends. For a start, the Political Commissar and the Squadron Commander were apt to stab you in […]