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The Luftwaffe Battle of Britain Fighter Pilots' Kitbag (Paperback)

Uniforms & Equipment from the Summer of 1940 and the Human Stories Behind Them

Aviation British History Frontline Books Battle of Britain Luftwaffe Frontline: Aviation

By Mark Hillier
Frontline Books
Pages: 137
ISBN: 9781473849952
Published: 11th February 2019

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Reichsmarschall Göring told Hitler that it would take less than a month for his much-vaunted Luftwaffe to conquer the RAF and pave the way for the German invasion of Great Britain. His prediction was to prove disastrously wrong, but for four long months his pilots and aircrew fought for their lives in the skies above the UK.

From their bases in continental Europe, the Luftwaffe’s fighter pilots escorted the great bomber fleets that sought to destroy the RAF’s airfields and installations, and tackled the Spitfires and Hurricanes deployed to defend Britain’s towns and cities. Whilst much has been written on the titanic struggle for supremacy fought throughout the summer of 1940 and of the men and machines of both sides, little attention has been paid to what the pilots wore and carried with them in the air.

All the objects that a Luftwaffe fighter pilot was issued with during the Battle of Britain are explored in this book in high-definition colour photographs, showing everything from the differing uniforms, to headgear, personal weapons, gloves, goggles, parachute packs and the essential life jacket. Each item is fully described and its purpose and use explained.

Fly with the Messerschmitt Bf 109s and Bf 110s across the Channel and see what the Luftwaffe aircrew wore as they took on Fighter Command in what was justly called the Battle of Britain.

Masterpiece with essential documentation for our library.

Read the full Spanish review here

Miniaturas JM

A short part deals with clothing services, patents and the work ends with watches, calculators, navigation maps and documents nominative, a very good idea! The vintage photos are very good quality, which is not unfortunately always the case of color shots.

Militaria Magazine, April 2019

Having seen many books about uniforms and equipment I can say few are in the same league as The Luftwaffe Battle of Britain Fighter Pilot´s Kitbag by Mark Hillier... This is a very useful guide for museum staff, private collectors, the film industry, reenactors and model figure enthusiasts.

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Lars Gyllenhall, Blogger

This book is like getting a little museum in your home!... A truly interesting and very complete and exhaustive reference book, interesting for historians, modelers and yes, pilots alike.

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Flyin' and Ridin' Blog, Francois A. Dumas

Whether you build miniatures or just enjoy immersing yourself in martial history, this aficionado’s reference volume will add a new layer of value to your collection.

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Schopenhauer's Workshop

A book that I recommend for the amount of information and photographs it contains.

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Old Barbed Wire Blog

A fascinating, informative and highly enjoyable read. I would highly recommend this to anyone interested in the Luftwaffe in WWII.

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A Question Of Scale, Seb Palmer

There are fantastic pictures in it... the niche market it's aimed for will love it.

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The View From The Turret Vlog

Overall, I rate this book very highly and it is great that the author has produced this pair
of books. He does deserve commending and has obviously spent many hours
researching them. Put simply they are a great and entertaining read and I am confident
you will find this too. For Luftwaffe or Battle of Britain enthusiasts they will be a great
buy.

Military Archive Research, Dr Stuart C Blank

Add some memories from a few of the veterans who used all this gear we have a well detailed coverage of the German fighter pilot's personal equipment from the early period of the war. There are illustrations from Luftwaffe manuals showing how kit should be laid out in a wardrobe for inspection. The item that I had not expected or seen before, was a uniform carry bag. The information and the colour pictures of surviving items are ideal for militaria collectors, re-enactors and modellers alike. As a modeller myself, this offers a fine reference, interesting for the historian in me as well.

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Military Model Scene, Robin Buckland
 Mark Hillier

About Mark Hillier

Mark Hillier is a chartered surveyor who has a deep knowledge of the history of the RAF, with a particular focus on the Second World War. He is also a qualified pilot, having flown for more than twenty-two years. Mark currently flies a Stearman biplane from Goodwood Aerodrome, the former RAF Westhampnett. He has previously written or co-authored five successful books on aviation, including the biography of Wing Commander Thomas Murray DSO, DFC and Bar, contributed numerous magazine articles and is a regular public speaker on aviation matters.

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