231st Review The English Electric Lightning- Rare photographs from wartime archives- Martin W. Bowman
The Lightning was an icon of the RAF during the years of the cold war. I wrote already several reviews about this remarkable plane that in terms of performance was ahead of his time. This is a photo book and therefore an in depth description of its specifications and specific characteristics is not necessary for the Lightning admirers because so many has been published already about this ‘beast’.
It was a very fast jet fighter that could fly Mach 2 in the climb and the basic air defence jet for the RAF in the sixties. Only very experienced pilots were allowed to fly this plane that was notorious for its very high fuel consumption.
Landings in crosswind and on slippery runways could be very tricky especially in bad weather circumstances quick leading to disaster for the inattentive pilot. The accident rate was high: Of the 253 production Lightnings operated by the RAF 63 ( around 25%) were lost resulting in the death of 17 pilots. In 1988 the last Lightnings retired but its fame remains.
This book is a high quality photobook with an attractive softcover and 114 pages with rare black and white photos made during its operational service period and a couple of pages with specifications of the different types and a time line of its existence. Please more color photos! For the Lightning admirer a must to have.