Vulcan 607 Book – Paperback
The number one bestseller
Author: Rowland White
With bookplate on the inner page displaying Martin Withers signature (XM607)
It was to be one of the most ambitious operations since 617 Squadron dropped their revolutionary bombs into the dams of the Ruhr Valley in 1943.
When Argentine forces invaded the Falklands in the early hours of 2 April 1982, Britain’s military chiefs were faced with a real-life Mission Impossible. It’s opening shot, they decided, would be Operation BLACK BUCK: to strike a body blow at the occupying army, and make then realise that nothing was safe – not even Buenos Aires.
The idea was simple: to destroy the vital landing strip at Port Stanley. The reality was more complicated. The only aircraft that could possibly do the job was three months from being scrapped, and the distance it had to travel was four thousand miles beyond its maximum range. It would take fifteen Victor tankers and seventeen separate in-flight refuellings to get one Avro Vulcan B2 over the target, and give its crew any chance of coming back alive.
Yet less than a month later, a formation of elderly British jets was launched from a remote island airbase to carry out the longest-range air attack in history. At the tip of the spear was a single aircraft, six men, and twenty-one thousand-pound bombs, facing a hornet’s nest of modern weaponry: the radar-guided guns and missiles of the Argentine defences. There would be no second chances…
It was the end of an era – the last time the RAF flew heavy bombers into combat before they were replaced by their digital, fly-by-wire, laser-guided successors. There were many who believed it couldn’t be done.
Drawing on extensive interviews with the combatants, Falklands residents and British High Command, and with unprecedented access to contemporary military records, Rowland White takes us, for the first time, to the beating heart of the legendary raid. Vulcan 607 is a story of ingenuity, courage and sheer bloody-mindedness that’s destined to become a classic.
Starring XH558’s Chief Pilot, Martin Withers DFC and Barry Masefield as AEO, plus other members of XH558’s aircrew.
“If the last bombing epic that you remember was the Dambusters’ Raid, this is the book for you …White tells a story that has scarcely been told before, one full of hidden dangers and pitfalls … the raid itself reads like a thriller full of nail-biting reverses … it is tensely absorbing to read how nearly it came unstuck … We’ve come a along way since Biggles.” – Daily Mail
“Gripping … It was and remains the longest range air attack in history. The task was simple. The means by which it was achieved, White demonstrates, was mind-boggling complex, sometimes chaotic, occasionally farcical and never less than fascinating” – Guardian
“Pacy, gripping, well-researched … the main narrative covers the huge difficulties involved … White takes us through all of these problems rather like the unfolding of a detective novel, yet his accuracy and technical detail is almost faultless. … a real page-turner … an excellent historical record of what was the longest attack mission ever carried out. Recommended.” – Royal Air Force Historical Society Journal
“Big, heavy bombers. Some proper old fashioned heroism. And a triumph of ingenuity over limited funding. So far as I’m concerned, it has the lot, and to cap it all, it reads like fiction when it’s actually fact. I more than enjoyed it, it could have been written specially for me.” – Jeremy Clarkson
“Exciting and breathtakingly pacy… This is exactly how modern history should be written.” – Andy McNab
Author: Rowland White is the author of the number one best seller, Vulcan 607. This was Rowland’s first book, which was published in 2006. It was followed in 2009 by two more British military history titles: Phoenix Squadron and, in 2010, Storm Front, about the Dhofar War in Oman in the early seventies. All three were Sunday Times top-ten bestsellers. Into the Black, about the first flight of the Space Shuttle Columbia followed, before he returned to the Falklands War again with Harrier 809, a celebration of Britain’s legendary jump jet and it’s critical contribution to victory in the South Atlantic. Rowland was born and brought up in Cambridge, and studied Modern History at the University of Liverpool. He now lives with his family in a village near Cambridge that he describes as “satisfyingly close to the Imperial War Museum at Duxford”.
Product Pages: 576
Dimensions: 127 x 197 x 37 mm
Illustrations: includes colour photographs