Book Recommendation

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JohnWillimas
Vulcan
Vulcan
Posts: 493
Joined: 26 Oct 2004, 08:28
Location: Near Daventry, UK

Re: Book Recommendation

Post by JohnWillimas »

Chris558 wrote:Just got 'Empire of the Clouds - When Britains Aircraft Ruled the World' by James Hamilton-Paterson.

Anyone else have it?
I finished it last night...

In the end I thought this could have been better....

Because it relies very heavily on Bill Waterton's memoirs of his times at Gloster you end up feeling that there are more stories to be told and I'm not sure how balanced a picture it paints. It rings true but I'd have liked to hear more from some of the other test pilots. Maybe there's another book to be written that does that!

That said it's a sorry tale of the decline of the British aero-industry as a result of a combination of management amateurism, government interference, and jingoistic complacency. (stop me if you've heard that any where else......).
Trev Clark
The Ministry
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Joined: 26 Jun 2004, 08:54
Location: Runway 26 at RAF Tangmere....most Mondays!

Re: Book Recommendation

Post by Trev Clark »

This is new to me!


Heathrow (north side) 1955-70, the best years!
http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/0752 ... _qpf_bw_i1?
Product Description
Today, Heathrow is a major transportation crossroads, with thousands of flights each year conveying millions of passengers to all parts of the globe, but its position as London's premier airport only came about through prime agricultural land being requisitioned under wartime emergency powers, ostensibly for a base for long-range RAF transport aircraft. Once the true purpose became known the airport was constructed and brought into service in haste, with passengers having to put up with leaky marquees as terminal facilities until temporary pre-fabricated buildings could be erected. Despite the primitive conditions the airport flourished and grew to such an extent that the original buildings on the north side were outgrown within a few years and the design and construction of a new terminal complex and control tower commenced. When the complex opened in 1955 Britain at last had a world-class airport to be proud of, and one which attracted large numbers of spectators to watch not only the general daily activity but the various air races, speed and altitude record attempts, and static displays of the RAF's latest fighters and bombers on Battle of Britain Days. Visitors could even go aloft themselves on sightseeing flights over central London. Illustrated with a wealth of photographs, many previously unpublished, and much nostalgic appeal, Heathrow Airport: The First 25 Years examines the development of London Airport's North side up to its final closure, and the construction and development of the Central Area complex. It recalls many favourite vintage aircraft that flew from Heathrow over the years, including Stratocruisers, Comets and Constellations, and contains many memories from airport and airline workers from those halcyon days.
ATB Trev
VC10
Vulcan
Vulcan
Posts: 471
Joined: 26 Jun 2004, 22:32
Location: Guildford

Re: Book Recommendation

Post by VC10 »

I've just finished 'TSR2 - Britain's Lost Cold War Strike Aircraft' by Tim McLelland (Ian Allan) and I have to say it has changed my whole viewpoint on the a/c 180 degrees. I now believe the a/c was doomed from the beginning. Over specified by the RAF, too much Government/Civil Service interference ( by the Tories), selection of the wrong lead contractor and poor project management by Vicker's, admittedly that in part was due to government inference and ignorance of the industry.

There are some excellent pictures in the book, many I have never seen before.

I am in touch with Stephen Skinner the author of BAC 1-11 - The Whole Story and he tells me the Crowood TSR2 book is even better
If God had meant us to fly, he would have given us tickets.
Archer
VC10
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Joined: 27 Jun 2004, 10:02
Location: Amsterdam
Contact:

Re: Book Recommendation

Post by Archer »

Paul, do you mean this one: http://www.tsr2.info/ ?

I've got it on my 'yet to get' list. I tried to get it for Christmas but they were out of stock then at my local store. The cover artwork was created by an old classmate of mine, it's impressive on its own. It certainly looks like Damien did his best on it. He has described on a different forum that this book has a slightly different angle than the one Tim McLelland wrote but I cannot find that bit again. Also I gathered that mr. McLelland was not held in very high regard as an aviation writer but that may be bias of course (although it wasn't just Damien who mentioned that). Anyway if and when I get it I'll try to report on it here.
Due to shortages and cutbacks the light at the end of the tunnel has been switched off.
------------
A Little VC10derness - http://www.VC10.net - Visit the Forum!
VC10
Vulcan
Vulcan
Posts: 471
Joined: 26 Jun 2004, 22:32
Location: Guildford

Re: Book Recommendation

Post by VC10 »

Archer wrote:Paul, do you mean this one: http://www.tsr2.info/ ?

I've got it on my 'yet to get' list. I tried to get it for Christmas but they were out of stock then at my local store. The cover artwork was created by an old classmate of mine, it's impressive on its own. It certainly looks like Damien did his best on it. He has described on a different forum that this book has a slightly different angle than the one Tim McLelland wrote but I cannot find that bit again. Also I gathered that mr. McLelland was not held in very high regard as an aviation writer but that may be bias of course (although it wasn't just Damien who mentioned that). Anyway if and when I get it I'll try to report on it here.
Yes that's the one. I got it for Christmas from my Mum, but I haven't seen it yet. It's a long story but due to the weather and other things I haven't seen her since before Christmas.

Stephen Skinner wasn't too enamoured by Tim McLelland either.

I'm currently reading 'Fate is the Hunter' by Earnest Gann. An excellent book.
If God had meant us to fly, he would have given us tickets.
J0hn
Concorde
Concorde
Posts: 1175
Joined: 20 Jul 2008, 18:22

Re: Book Recommendation

Post by J0hn »

As a by-the-by, I asked in a previous post if anyone was using a netbook or kindle reader for their general reading and for refernce manuals whilst flying etc.

Didn't see any response to that, but I can tell you now that I purchased a netbook (Acer Aspire One) at New Year and it is perfect.

I take it to bed to read from every night and even use it during the ad breaks on telly!

I also use it as a reference, though at 10.1 inches, the screen can be small for viewing images (its great for watching videos, though, with excellent picture quality - I've watched several films on it from Beeb's iplayer).

So there ya go :)

JD

PS - if anyone would like to know what our boys on the ground in Afghanistan are going through, I would highly recommend Attack State Red - it really is the dog's dangly bits, from a front line soldier's POV.
http://attackstatered.com/
austerdriver

Re: Book Recommendation

Post by austerdriver »

I have just finished reading the book called Highest Duty. This is about the Airbus 320 that landed in the Hudson river on January 15 2009 and all on board survived.

The ISBN for the book is - 978-0-0619-6077-2

http://www.amazon.com/Highest-Duty-Sear ... 0061924687
VC10
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Posts: 471
Joined: 26 Jun 2004, 22:32
Location: Guildford

Re: Book Recommendation

Post by VC10 »

I'm three quarters of the way through - 'Empire of the Clouds - When Britains Aircraft Ruled the World'' - ISBN 978-0-571-24794-3 and found it is one of those books that once I've started it I can't put it down.

As a result of reading it what I am on the lookout for now is 'The Quick And The Dead' by Sqn Ldr Bill Waterton GM, AFC and bar, Gloster's Chief Test Pilot on the Javelin. Apparently he wasn't too popular with the Gloster management, he told them what they didn't want to hear. In the end he lost his job with Gloster's and became the Aviation Correspondant at the Daily Express. During his time at the DE - 2 yrs - he wrote the book that was high critical of the post-war UK aircraft industry and how it continued to operate on wartime production methods. As a result of the book he was fired from the DE after pressure was applied by advertisers.

The book was published in 1956 and the only copy for sale I have found on the internet was in New Zealand on a domestic only website.

Update - I bought the VC10 Pilot notes from www.flight-manuauls-on-cd.com which is based in NZ and through him I have acquired the copy of The Quick & the Dead :excited:
If God had meant us to fly, he would have given us tickets.
ChrisHunt
Concorde
Concorde
Posts: 886
Joined: 28 Jun 2004, 20:21
Location: Suffolk

Re: Book Recommendation

Post by ChrisHunt »

Finished Len Deighton's Bomber a few days ago and now part way through Vulcan 607 (the story of the first Vulcan raid on the Falklands in 1982) by Rowland White. The juxtaposition and similarities of the two (albeit one fiction and the other fact) are interesting. Bomber is highly recommended, very well written and pulls no punches in the air and on the ground. Vulcan 607, despite the potential to be dry, is also a good read.

Regards,
Chris
Paul K
Red Arrows
Red Arrows
Posts: 6455
Joined: 12 Jun 2005, 16:41
Location: Cambridge, UK

Re: Book Recommendation

Post by Paul K »

Empire of the Clouds, Bomber, Vulcan 607...all excellent reads ! :)
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