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Hawker's Secret Projects (ePub)

Cold War Aircraft That Never Flew

Aviation Military > Post-WWII Warfare > Cold War

By Christopher Budgen
Imprint: Air World
File Size: 78.1 MB (.epub)
Pages: 256
ISBN: 9781399047920
Published: 2nd November 2023


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Hawker Aircraft Ltd at Kingston was arguably the most successful and long-lasting manufacturer of military aircraft in Great Britain and Europe. In its various evolved manifestations – Hawker Aircraft, Hawker Siddeley Aviation, British Aerospace – its output of war winning aircraft, mainly fighters, was unsurpassed. From the Hart and Hurricane through the Hunter, Harrier and Hawk, the company consistently produced aircraft that the UK fighting services wanted. But some designs, for whatever reason, failed to reach flight or were declined by the services.

With their sometimes advanced aerodynamics and technology, these aircraft could have had successful service careers but instead were abandoned, their stories failing to reach mainstream consciousness. Having not received their just dues, the present book seeks to redress this omission. The reasons for failure are many and varied, often financial or political, but in each case the reasons behind the failure of the design are examined.

In a wide-ranging investigation that documents the origins of Hawker Aircraft Ltd and its famous Project Office, this work, the third in Christopher Budgen’s investigation of the inner workings of Hawker Aircraft, is a fitting tribute to the many who made the company the success it was.

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About Christopher Budgen

CHRISTOPHER BUDGEN, growing up in the shadow of Hawker’s Flight Test Centre at Dunsfold in Surrey, entered employment there in the 1970s, shortly after the nationalisation of the aircraft industry and the company’s amalgamation into state-owned British Aerospace. During 21 years with BAe, as well as working on many Hawk, Harrier and Sea Harrier projects, he was also fortunate to be involved with Hawker’s superlative Hunter in the guise of a modified T.8M used in the development of the Sea Harrier for aircrew training. Chris’s previous book detailing Hawker history – Hawker’s Secret Cold War Airfield – is now followed by this work. As an archivist for some years engaged at Brooklands Museum and specializing in Hawker Aircraft Ltd and successor companies, Chris is well-placed to bring to light the previously unrecorded detail of Hawker’s fascinating history.

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