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Winged Sabres (Hardback)

One of the RFC's Most Decorated Squadrons

Aviation WWI World War One Aviation Photo Books Royal Air Force

By Robert A Sellwood
Imprint: Pen & Sword Aviation
Series: The National Archives
Pages: 300
ISBN: 9781526729576
Published: 31st May 2018

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Winged Sabres is the story of a RFC & RAF squadron flying the cumbersome FE2 from February 1916 to September 1917, and then the superlative Bristol Fighter: a two-seater ‘fighter-reconnaissance’ squadron with an astonishingly high success rate.

20 Squadron was possibly the highest scoring squadron of the war and one of the most highly decorated, claiming over 600 combat victories with well over 400 confirmed in RFC & RAF Communiqués. Its members won seventy gallantry decorations including a posthumous Victoria Cross, and included fliers from the U.K. and around the world. Over 40 became aces, including the American Iaccaci brothers and some Canadians and others. But with a casualty rate of around 50 per cent including killed, wounded and POW they paid a high price.

Over 15 years research has gone into this book, covering a seldom-explored aspect of WW1 in the air: the two-seater fighter-reconnaissance squadrons. 20 Squadron’s motto was Facta Non Verba – Deeds Not Words!

The author has made a very good job of presenting the history of 20 “Winged Sabres” Squadron and their aircraft. From the detail packed into this book, it is easy to see why the author spent more than fifteen years in researching for it.

Firetrench

This is a fascinating book and only narrowly missed being the Editor's Choice.

Outstanding history. 10/10

The Great War magazine, September 2018 – reviewed by Mark Marsay

Author Q&A as featured by

The Sunday Post, 15th July 2018

Featured 'ON THE SHELF' by Neil Smith

Wargames Illustrated, May 2018

About Robert A Sellwood

Robert's Scottish Grandfather’s death with 20 Squadron in WW1 started his interest in the squadron, which soon became a much bigger project involving the study of many detailed official records. He has visited the Flanders Battlefields several times in this regard and have also received help from a number of descendants of the men involved. Robert lives in Sussex with his cat, Bella.

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