The Battle of Britain: The Fight for Survival in 1940
Clear blue skies laced white with vapor trails of fighting aircraft... petrol-filled beer bottles in the garden shed to repel the panzers... streets deserted when the Prime Minister was on the wireless... radar screens picking up German fighters and bombers approaching the English coast... Michael Bowyer tells the story of the Battle of Britain day by day detailing squadrons, aircraft types, locations, and people together with an analysis of the success or otherwise of German raids. The battle is also viewed in the wider context of the war in which both Bomber Command and Coastal Command played a vital role. Still at school at the time, Michael Bowyer also applies his unrivalled skill to recreate the scene of that finest hour using snippets from official notices, the words of Winston Churchill, and items of incidental information to help conjure up the atmosphere of the time. More than that, he imbues it with a relish for evoking a way of life unimaginably different from today.
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The hard life
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12 Group 85 Squadron aerodrome aftemoon airﬁelds anived attack August balloons Battle of Britain Biggin Hill Blenheim Bomber Command bombs fell buming casualties coast Coastal Command convoy crashed crews defence Deﬁant destroyed difﬁcult Domier Dover Dowding East enemy aircraft engaged escorted exploded factory Fairey Battles feet ﬁfteen ﬁfty ﬁght Fighter Command ﬁghter-bombers ﬁghters ﬁghting ﬁom ﬁre ﬁred ﬁrst ﬁve ﬂew Flight Lieutenant ﬂights ﬂown Flt Lt ﬂying force formation four France German gunners guns H/KG Hampden hangar Hawkinge Heinkel Homchurch Hunicanes incendiaries injured invasion July June Kent killed land ll1s London losses Luftﬂotte Luftwaffe Manston moming Narvik night North Weald October ofﬁcial ofthe operations parachute patrols Pilot Ofﬁcer Potez 63 radar RAF ﬁghters raick raid raiders reconnaissance retum September 1940 seriously damaged ships shot soon sorties South Spitﬁres Squadron Hurricanes station Stukas targets Totals Wellington Whitley