Developed in the late 1930s, the Bristol Blenheim was the first RAF aircraft to carry out a reconnaissance over occupied Europe and the first to carry out a bombing raid. This book tells the story of this important aircraft which, although it often missed the limelight, performed valuable roles as bomber, reconnaissance aircraft and night fighter throughout the war.
The first Mk I Blenheims entered service with No.114 Squadron in March 1937 and 1,552 were built before the Mk IV came into production, with an extended nose for reconnaissance. Most of the Blenheim squadrons were equipped with the Mk IV by September 1939. Although it outperformed the biplanes of the 1930s, the Blenheim was soon overtaken by single-engine fighters and its role was changed accordingly.
In this fascinating and well-researched book, the author shows how the Blenheim adapted to various roles in different theatres of war. Apart from its reconnaissance role, it was also a pioneering night-fighter, taking advantage of the dark to reduce its vulnerability, and it also served as a long-range maritime patrol aircraft with Coastal Command. The Mk IF (Fighter) version was also developed with a gun pack of four .303 machine guns over the bomb bay. Some of these aircraft took part in the Battle of France, Dunkirk and the Battle of Britain. Blenheim operations were then largely moved to North Africa and the Middle East and then the Far East.
Written by an authority on RAF aircraft, this book provides new insights into this adaptable and dependable aircraft.
- Publication Date:
- 15 / 06 / 2019
- 165 x 234mm