Another naval aviation history from the winning team of Commander Hobbs and Seaforth Publishing. This new book tells the story of the Royal Navy’s development of naval aviation as an effective and revolutionary weapon of war, also telling of the frustration by politicians who were more interested in spending illusory peace dividends – Most Highly Recommended
NAME: The Dawn of Carrier Strike, and the World of Lieutenant WP Lucy DSO RN FILE: R2839 AUTHOR: David Hobbs PUBLISHER: Pen & Sword, Seaforth Publishing BINDING: hard back PAGES: 386 PRICE: £35.00 GENRE: Non Fiction SUBJECT: Naval aviation, carriers, strike force, 1908 to WWII, fixed wing, heavier than air, RNAS, Fleet Air Arm, British pioneers, attack aircraft, naval warfare, Royal Navy
IMAGE: B2839.jpg BUYNOW: tinyurl.com/yyyec8pk LINKS: DESCRIPTION: Another naval aviation history from the winning team of Commander Hobbs and Seaforth Publishing. This new book tells the story of the Royal Navy's development of naval aviation as an effective and revolutionary weapon of war, also telling of the frustration by politicians who were more interested in spending illusory peace dividends – Most Highly Recommended Commander Hobbs had a distinguished naval career as a pilot with over 800 carrier landings, responsibility for developing operating techniques for the Invincible Class VSTOL carriers, as RN representative on an Information Exchange Programme with the US Navy, involved in trials for the AV-8A at sea. On retirement, he worked for 8 years as Curator of the Fleet Air Arm Museum, Yeovilton. This has been followed by a new career as an author of naval aviation histories. In this new book he reviews the Royal Navy's work in pioneering naval aviation. Although famous and controversial frigate captain (later Admiral) Cochrane wrote about the use of naval aviation and chemical weapons at the beginning of the 19th Century, and naval officers started taking flights in balloons less than half a century later, the RN began in earnest in 1903 with an intensive programme of tests with man-carrying kites, to be followed in 1908 with funding for a first airship and 1911 with the first naval aviators' flying school. It is interesting to speculate on the effect on the conduct of WWI had the politicians not tried so hard to frustrate naval innovation and give the Army control of aviation. The RN fought a determined battle with Westminster and regained control of their aircraft a month before the outbreak of WWI. They celebrated by successfully dropping the first torpedo from an aircraft and started putting in place all the plans carefully developed during the period from 1911. Unlike the Army, who were forced to buy lack lustre designs from the Government Aircraft Factory, the RN used trusted defence contractors. The result was that the Army went to war in 1914 with flimsy slow unarmed reconnaissance aircraft, but the RNAS went to war in real weapons systems, aircraft able to drop bombs, depth bombs, torpedoes and fire bullets. The equipment was advanced, but the RNAS had also developed the tactics, manuals and training to successfully employ their aircraft in support of the objectives set for the Fleet. During WWI, the RNAS and the RN developed the carrier aircraft to fly on and off wheeled land planes with the vessels underway. Just before the formation of the RAF in 1918, the RNAS had developed a detailed plan for a carrier strike force to attack the German High Seas Fleet in port. The RAF failed to go forward with these plans and it had to wait for the RN to regain control once more of its aircraft and dust the plans off in WWII to attack the Italian Fleet in port, providing lessons the Japanese were quick to pick up for their attack on the US Pacific Fleet in port. In this new book the author takes the story through from the unique and dominant position of British naval aviation, through the largely wasted years without control of the aircraft to the belated return of control in 1938 and the urgent RN activity to get its Fleet Ar Arm ready for war in an impossibly short period. The experiences have been well illustrated by the experiences of Lieutenant Lucy who became the first accredited air 'ace' of WWII, making extensive use of the family archive with many previously unpublished photographs from the Lucy album. As to be expected from this author the research is impeccable and the very able text is well-supported by a great selection of images.