Geoffrey de Havilland’s first attempts to fly were in 1909, and this early part of de Havilland’s career saw him rise from an enthusiastic amateur designing his own aircraft to a key figure and test pilot, working for the fledgling Royal Aircraft Factory within a relatively short space of time. By the beginning of World War One, de Havilland had become chief designer at Airco, where he created several successful military machines. He left there to form his own company, de Havilland Company Limited, and it was there that he produced some of his greatest aircraft. Of course, there is only one aircraft comes to mind on de Havilland and its contribution to World War Two – the Mosquito. That aircraft more than proved its worth. De Havilland also produced its own engines, beginning with the successful Gipsy. Other subsidiaries also included de Havilland Canada and de Havilland Australia.
Geoffrey de Havilland’s contribution to the British aircraft industry was colossal and many of the aircraft covered in this book have remained household names from the day that they first flew. Tiger Moth, Mosquito, Vampire, Venom, Comet and Sea Vixen are just a few; all of them sewn into the tapestry of an industry that, only a few decades ago, led from the front. This new book edition of Aeroplane’s De Havilland Company Profile 1920–1964 (Military Types) showcases the legacy of one man and his aircraft.