Aircraft Wrecks: The Walker's Guide: Historic Crash Sites  on the Moors and Mountains of the British Isles

By Nick Wotherspoon,  Alan Clark & Mark Sheldon




  Aircraft Wrecks- The Walker's Guide- Historic Crash Sites on the Moors and Mountains of the British Isles




Nick Wotherspoon,  Alan Clark & Mark Sheldon


Pen & Sword


Hardback - 352 pages


23.4 x 15.6 x 3.2 cm

  Cover Price:





This book aims to give readers access to the tangible remains of hundreds of historic aircraft that still lie at crash sites on the moors and mountains of the British Isles, all of which can be visited. It covers almost 500 selected sites, with emphasis given to those on open access land and including; accurate verified grid references, up-to-date site descriptions and recent photographs. Arranged geographically, the areas covered include:

South-west Moors - 15 entries. ~ Wales - 93 entries. ~ Peak District - 82 entries.
Pennines - 76 Entries. ~ Lake District - 32 entries. ~ North Yorkshire Moors - 23 entries.
Isle of Man - 18 entries. ~ Scotland: Lowlands - 47 entries. ~ Highlands and Islands - 85 entries. ~ Ireland - 19 entries.

Representing the main upland areas of the British Isles, each of these sections is introduced with a brief narrative describing its geographical characteristics and aviation background, discussing the factors and trends lying behind the concentration of losses within each area and noting any especially significant incidents. Individual site entries include precise location details including, where required, additional references for scattered major items of wreckage and any relevant notes to aid finding or interpreting the crash site, together with details of the aircraft, names and fates of those onboard and the circumstances of the loss. 

Average Customer Review 4.7 out of 5 stars (3 customer reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars - The best air crash site guide to the British Isles, 30 Aug 2009
By  Ian D B 
This review is from: Aircraft Wrecks: The Walker's Guide: Historic Crash Sites on the Moors and Mountains of the British Isles (Hardcover)
There are various guides to wrecks sites available that cover specific areas of the country. The big thing about this book is its scope. This is the book to buy if planning to visit sites across the country.

The grid references provided are six digits, which will narrow your search down to a hundred square metres. If there's a substantial amount of wreckage left to see, that shouldn't be a problem. But searching for the fragmentary remains of say Wellington X3348 on Edale Moor over an area that size could be a tall order.

Having said all that, I put the book to its intended use yesterday and located the crash site of Halifax DT581 near Todmorden without any difficulty at all using the grid reference provided. Coincidentally this Halifax crashed just a few days before the Wellington on Edale Moor.

The well thought out maps and layout are very useful features of this book. Each area of the country has a map at the beginning of the section, with numbered dots marking the air crash sites. These sites are entered in the section in the alphabetical order of the aircraft make, with the reference to the map in numerical order, along with the grid ref, crew list and description of what happened. This way, you can look at the map to see which crash sites are close to each other, find the entries at a glance and plan visits to more than one site on a single walk. Or you can search by aircraft type just as easily.

The scope of this book is its best selling point though, detailing crash sites in Ireland and the UK. And though some of the photos are a few years old, this is the most up to date and comprehensive reference book on the subject. It's a bit heavy to carry about the hills, but also a bit too nice to get battered in the back of a pack. This is a book for planning visits to air crash sites with the necessary OS map, and at that it's unbeatable. There are crash sites not covered in this book - its aim is to detail every high ground crash site where there is still some evidence of what took place, not every air crash site in the country.

It's also worth searching for further information if you are interested in a particular crash site story. The names Nick Wotherspoon (Lancashire Aircraft Investigation Team) and Alan Clark (Peak District Air Accident Research) in particular crop up all the time in searches. The authors of this book are at the forefront of this field, and their research sets the benchmark. These are the people who turn up at crash sites with JCBs and who go through endless military records and contact families and veterans. In other words, the information provided is first hand.
5.0 out of 5 stars - A guide to points of interest, 24 Aug 2009
By  TheOldManOfConiston ("Lancashire") 
This review is from: Aircraft Wrecks: The Walker's Guide: Historic Crash Sites on the Moors and Mountains of the British Isles (Hardcover)
Having come across a few aeroplane wrecks while out walking over the years I purchased this book in the expectation of perhaps learning a bit more about them, and on that score this book delivered. There are descriptions (some quite detailed) of how the aeroplanes came to crash and a summary of what wreckage remains at the locations detailed (6 figure grid ref and place name are given). The wrecks are in effect covered as points of interest to add into a walk, for unlike a typical walking guide the book does not give route or walk descriptions, leaving you to work out your own route. The book is well illustrated with many photos of the wrecks it covers, which lie across all the main walking areas of the "British Isles". The tragic loss of life in the considerable number of accidents (I never imagined there were so many) is brought home by the lists of the peoples names included, but remarkably it seems there were a number of people who actually survived the accidents. In summary, if you are interested in adding a few points of interest with a difference into your walks then I recommend this book even though it is a little pricy for a walking guide that has no routes in it!
5.0 out of 5 stars - An excellent book, 22 May 2010
By  Mr. R. J. Overton
This review is from: Aircraft Wrecks: The Walker's Guide: Historic Crash Sites on the Moors and Mountains of the British Isles (Hardcover)
This is a marvelous book, giving a great armchair read before getting out your maps and planning a day out. The directions could be better with maybe the recommended 6 figure reference starting point for people new to the area to avoid straying over private land and maybe a list of the OS maps needed for each site but all in all a great book. Just be sure to make your own notes for future reference. A joy to own and read and more of a challenge than simple GPS references.
I have only found time to visit 1 site so far but already the book has paid for itself.
Thoroughly recommended
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