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Ocean Bridge By Carl A. Christie

Ocean Bridge by Carl A. Christie

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The timely delivery of aircraft was crucial in the Second World War. This is a full account of the pioneering efforts of the Ferry Command, whose efforts spawned international air travel as we now know it.

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Ocean Bridge Summary

Ocean Bridge: The History of RAF Ferry Command by Carl A. Christie

At the beginning of the Second World War there was no thought of delivering planes by air across the Atlantic. It was assumed to be too costly and too dangerous, especially in winter. Despite this initial reluctance, between the fall of 1940 and the spring of 1945, Royal Air Force Ferry Command's mixed civilian and military crews flew almost ten thousand aircraft, mainly American-built, to operational squadrons overseas. In Ocean Bridge Carl Christie provides the first full account of the genesis, history, and importance of Ferry Command.From the pioneer transatlantic flights of the interwar period and the early attempts to initiate regular commercial service, Christie traces London's decision to have aircraft, supplies, and passengers delivered across the Atlantic Ocean from Canada and the United States. Under the inspired leadership of a handful of Imperial Airways' captain-navigators, a group of civilian airmen from Britain, Canada, and the United States undertook to fly urgently needed bombers, maritime patrol aircraft, and transports to Europe for the RAF. This informal civilian organization was augmented by graduates of the British Commonwealth Air Training Plan in Canada and taken over by the RAF as Ferry Command in 194 1. Some five hundred aircrew, as well as sixty passengers, lost their lives in accidents; Major Sir Frederick Banting, the discoverer of insulin, was killed in the first fatal crash of the ferry service.Ocean Bridge chronicles an often overlooked contribution to Allied victory and aviation history. By war's end the ferry service, through its various incarnations, had created the basis for the network of international air routes and procedures that commercial travellers now take for granted.

Ocean Bridge Reviews

'There are scores of stories within the narrative, made vivid through the querying of those who took part. You read about their motives, fears, survivals and casualties...A fascinating special history.' -- Douglas Fisher Legion 'This masterly piece of research will surely become the standard reference on the subject.' Aeroplane Monthly 'Well bound and printed, with 50 excellent black and white photos, this book will find a ready home on the shelf of anyone interested in military flying.' The Evening Telegram, St John's Newfoundland 'Christie has mastered a large body of documentation and interviews to write this historical account. Despite the enormous wealth of detail and a cast of thousands, he has managed to produce a clear narrative of interest to anyone who knows how challenging the Atlantic can be.' -- Sidney Allinson The Northern Mariner

About Carl A. Christie

Carl A. Christie retired as Senior Research Officer of the Department of National Defence's Directorate of History in March 1996. He now lives in Winnipeg, where he teaches military and aviation history to Canadian Forces personnel as an associate professor of the Royal Military College of Canada's War Studies Programme. He is currently working on a one volume history of the RCAF.

Additional information

Ocean Bridge: The History of RAF Ferry Command by Carl A. Christie
University of Toronto Press
Book picture is for illustrative purposes only, actual binding, cover or edition may vary.
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