At a time when German U-Boats were ruthlessly attacking the maritime convoys engaged in bringing essential supplies to British shores, British airships played a vital role in neutralizing this danger and were crucial in enabling Britain to eventually emerge victorious. In 1907 the British Army built the military's first airship, and at the outbreak of World War I there were a total of seven airships under control of the Admiralty, hunting U-Boats from the skies. This book reveals the fascinating story of the cat and mouse duel between the airship and another pioneering form of technology - the submarine. Detailed cut-away drawings reveal the design and development of the airship, during and after the war, whilst full-color illustrations depict the airship in dramatic action shots. A tragic accident in 1930 brought the airship's military service to an end, resulting in a tiny window in which they were used and little acknowledgement over the years. Ian Knight gives deserved attention to an aeronautical wonder that for a short amount of time played a crucial service to the defense of Britain.
"This is a small book but it is jam packed with photographs... It is divided into 3 sections; non-rigid, semi-ridged, and rigid airships. It includes the envelope capacity, overall length, engines, disposable lift, and top speed. This book even has a bibliography so that the curious, like me, can go and get more detailed information on them... I highly recommend this book." -Mike Hinderliter, IPMS USA (August 2009)
"The book is full of superb period photos and the superb artwork of illustrators Tony Bryan and Giuseppe Raval really help bring to light the fragility and the look of these airships. In all, it makes for another fascinating read and one that I know will draw you into it as it did I." -Scott Van Aken, www.modelingmadness.com (August 2009)
"Ian Castle provides a highly lucid explanation of the various types of dirigibles, covering not only the development and operational use of the nonrigid blimps during World War I, but also Britain's far less successful program for the construction of giant rigid airships... Castle's book is a must for World War I enthusiasts, focusing on an aspect of that conflict rarely covered anywhere else. It should prove equally indispensable to anyone interested in lighter-than-air technology." - Robert Guttman, Aviation History (July 2010)