Lost Aviation Collections of Britain  [9780859791595]

Lost Aviation Collections of Britain
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Date Added: Thursday 12. January, 2012
Not a flying boat book (although a Catalina features on the front cover photo if you look closely) but a fantastic reference resource is W&R Lost Aviation Collections of Britain by the indefatigable author Ken Ellis. Ken Ellis will be well-known to most readers as the Editor for many years of FlyPast magazine and the author of many books including the long-running bi-annual Wrecks & Relics title from which this latest book gets its W&R prefix. Wrecks & Relics has for many years been the ‘bible’ for those of us interested in the comings and goings among preserved, instructional and derelict aircraft in the UK and Ireland. Over the course of 22 editions so far, it has not only detailed the movement of individual aircraft but has also seen some collections of aircraft come and go. What Ken has now done in between Edition 22 and the presumably forthcoming Edition 23 is to produce a 50th Anniversary book as “a tribute to the UK’s bygone aviation museums and collections”.
Through 223 packed pages he documents no less than 27 important collections of veteran and vintage aircraft that for one reason or another no longer exist. Each collection has its own chapter describing its history and the background to its demise, some sad and many inevitable.
It is not all doom and gloom, however as the tables at the end of each section detailing the collection’s aircraft exhibits show that many went on to other collections and survive to this day. Scattered through the book are brief sections covering individual aircraft types that did not survive into preservation – the ‘ones that go away’. The book is packed with both black and white and colour photos and is east to navigate using the Contents and aircraft index sections.
Unlike the regular W&Rs, this title has plenty of narrative text that provides an excellent part-history of aircraft preservation in the UK and the characters involved in it. And the Catalina on the cover? – it is the former Royal Danish Air Force PBY-6A L-866 forming part of an amazing line-up of aircraft on the tarmac at RAF Colerne before the RAF Museum ‘out-station’ collection there was dispersed. The Catalina ended up in the RAF Museum, Cosford where it remains still. This is a great book, available from Crécy Publishing.

Catalina News Autumn/Winter 2011
Rating: 5 of 5 Stars! [5 of 5 Stars!]
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