Airfields and Airmen of the Channel Coast by Michael O'Connor

By Michael O'Connor

During this most modern addition to the Airfields and Airmen sequence, Mike OConnor describes the dramatic air activities that came about alongside the Belgian and North France sea coast through the nice War.In addition to the Royal battling Corps and RAF element this quantity covers the Royal Naval Air carrier (RNAS) and Belgian Air carrier (AMB) in addition to the German Naval Air carrier.

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Willy Coppens, Belgium’s most successful fighter pilot, bringing down a kite balloon in his blue Hanriot HD1. See pages 86 and 90 Table of Contents Battleground Europe - Airfields and Airmen The Channel Coast Battleground series: Title Page Copyright Page INTRODUCTION BY SERIES EDITOR ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS AUTHOR’S INTRODUCTION HOW THE GUIDE WORKS TABLE OF MAPS THE DEVELOPMENT OF MILITARY FLYING Abbreviations Chapter One - THE EASTERN AREA Chapter Two - THE CENTRAL AREA Chapter Three - THE WESTERN AREA Conclusion Further Reading INDEX INTRODUCTION BY SERIES EDITOR This latest addition to Michael O’Connor’s wonderful series of books on the Airmen and Airfields in the Great War lives up to the very high standard of its predecessors.

During Sir Charles Warren’s expedition to Bechuanaland in 1884 three balloons were employed with a force of two officers and fifteen NCOs and other ranks. After this episode, however, little official interest was displayed and it was only the efforts of a few enlightened officers which kept military ballooning alive. For example, experiments in observing gun fire were carried out, mainly with captive balloons. In 1890 a balloon section was introduced into the army as a part of the Royal Engineers and two years later the centre of balloon work was moved to Aldershot.

Jim has, as usual, spent considerable time and effort in proof-reading, writing directions and many other tasks for the book, plus flying the aeroplane for the aerial shots. Barry has produced many of the images, spending thankless hours in his darkroom. I would also like to thank the following: Colin Ashford GAvA for his usual splendid cover illustration; Paul Baillie; Nigel Cave; the staff of the Commonwealth War Graves Commission; Jacques de Ceuninck; N R Cunningham-Reid; Bernard Deneckere; Air Vice-Marshal Peter Dye; Marco Fernández-Sommerau; the German War Graves Commission; the late Hal Giblin; Dorothy Gough; Barry Greenwood; Christine Gregory, latterly of the RAF Museum; Tim Harper; Trevor Henshaw; Phil Jarrett; Jeff Jefford; Jan Keohane of the Fleet Air Arm Museum; Peter Kilduff; Stuart Leslie for his enormous help with photographs; Bob Lynes; Tony Mellor-Ellis; Simon Moody, also latterly of the RAF Museum; Roger Nixon; the staff at Pen and Sword, the staff of the Public Record Office; Keith Rennles; Alex Revell; Ray Rimell; the staff of the Service Historique de l’Armée del’Air; William Spencer; Stewart K Taylor; Keith Thomas; Alan Toelle; Alan Wakefield of the Imperial War Museum; Aaron Weaver; Mike Westrop; Brigadier Henry Wilson and Lawrie Woodcock and Greg VanWyngarden; Every effort has been made to contact the authors of the various books or articles quoted and their copyright is acknowledged.

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