Gun Button to Fire: A Hurricane Pilot's Dramatic Story of the Battle of Britain

Gun Button to Fire: A Hurricane Pilot's Dramatic Story of the Battle of Britain

by Tom Neil


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The amazing story of one of the 'Few', fighter ace Tom Neil who shot down 13 enemy aircraft during the Battle of Britain. This is a fighter pilot's story of eight memorable months from May to December 1940. When the Germans were blitzing their way across France, Pilot Officer Tom Neil had just received his first posting - to 249 Squadron. Nineteen years old, fresh from training at Montrose on Hawker Audax biplanes he was soon to be pitch forked into the maelstrom of air fighting on which the survival of Britain was to depend. By the end of the year he had shot down 13 enemy aircraft, seen many of his friends killed, injured or burned, and was himself a wary and accomplished fighter pilot.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781445605104
Publisher: Amberley Publishing
Publication date: 09/02/2011
Pages: 320
Product dimensions: 4.90(w) x 7.70(h) x 1.00(d)

About the Author

Tom Neil joined 249 Squadron flying Hurricanes just before the start of the Battle of Britain. His first victory was an Me 109, followed in quick succession by twelve others. Tom was awarded a Bar to his DFC in November 1940. After the Battle of Britain, he was soon in action again in the skies over Malta where he gained another victory. His other books include The Silver Spitfire and Gun Button To Fire. He is the Chairman of the Battle of Britain Fighter Pilot Association. Now ninety-five, he lives in Norfolk and has three sons, two of whom carry on the tradition of flying. His wife of over seventy years, Eileen, herself an RAF Flight Officer during the war, sadly died last year.

Table of Contents

Foreword 6

Author's Note 7

1 Early Days 9

2 249 Squadron: May 1940 24

3 Spitfire Interlude: 1 - 11 June 1940 34

4 Operational in a Hurricane: 12 June-14 August 1940 39

5 Into Battle From Boscombe Down: 15-31 August 1940 51

6 September 1940 at North Weald 63

7 An October of 109s 125

8 Winter Sets In: November 1940 157

9 The Last of the Year: December 1940 186

Epilogue: What Happened After the Battle of Britain? 236

Publisher's Acknowledgements 271

Appendix - Log Book 272

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