One of the most versatile strike aircraft of World War 2, the Beaufighter served in campaigns across the world. It was one of the most important British types of the conflict. Easily the most comprehensive profile of the type yet, this volume provides individual histories of the 5,564 aircraft built in England and the hundreds built or assembled in Australia for use against the Japanese. Several hundred were used as night interceptors by the USAAF, and others were used by the Dominican Republic, Portugal, France, Israel and Turkey. The “Beau” did not retire from the RAF until 1960.
For many, the attraction of this volume will be the 825 black and white and 28 colour photographs, with their comprehensive captions. Most have never appeared in print before. Chapters cover development, production, operational overview, and details of the Beaufighter’s service with individual units of the RAF and Commonwealth air forces, the FAA, the SAAF, the RAAF in the Pacific, and the USAAF. Personnel involved in operational losses and other incidents are indexed. There is a critical assessment of whether the Japanese, as has so often been claimed, really did call it “whispering death”.
The book also includes 24 colour side views and nine six-view colour general arrangements.