There must be many amongst our readers who remember with affection the Lancaster bombers of the last war. So we make no excuse for recommending the latest book from that conscientious publisher of aeronautical works, Harleyford Publications Ltd., of Letchworth, Herts.
A companion to the other great Harleyford book about the Spitfire fighter, “Lancaster—The Story of a Famous Bomber,” which costs 60s., is a unique work. It describes the evolution of the most famous World War Two bomber from the two-engined Manchester to the Lancaster with its four Rolls-Royce Merlin engines.
This is essentially a technical work, so that the evolution, mods., failures and successes of the Avro Lancaster, of which 7,374 were built, plus three prototypes, are dealt with from that angle. One reads again of the breeching of the dams, of the battle of the Ruhr, of the bombing of the Tirpitz, not as glamour stories but from the engineering and strategic standpoint.
The book is crammed with remarkable pictures, drawings and cut-away views of Lancasters, and its most remarkable achievement of all is an individual history of every one of the 7,377 Lancasters built, this enormous appendix giving contractor, date, mark No., fate, and in many cases the aircraft’s total living hours and details of operations undertaken. Prodigious! The book is a tribute to D. A. Russell, M.I.MECH.E., who produced it, to author Bruce Robertson, and artist J. D. Carrick. The tone paintings are by W. F. Hepworth, M.S.I.A. The book has 216 11-1/5 x 8-1/5 in. pages and should give pleasure to all who flew, crewed, helped to create or owe their freedom to the Avro Lancaster.—W. B.
Austin Seven items
From the 750 M.C. Bulletin we glean the interesting fact that Colin Chapman disclosed at the Club dinner that for old times’ sake he always uses an Austin Seven part on all Lotus cars. For the current F.1 car he says this is a wheel nut, which caused the 750 M.C. to remark that they hope it is not that “horrible brass tapered-seat monstrosity! ” It has become fashionable to run vintage Austin Sevens in M.C.C. trials, John Bonnett removing the front mudguards of his Chummy before the “Exeter” to avoid damaging them, replacing them with strip wings. A M-type M.G. competed in the Club’s Salisbury Trial, this kind of rival entry being amongst the original intentions of the 750 M.C.