An in-depth account of the 1968 London air tragedy that claimed five lives—includes interviews with cabin crew, passengers, and air traffic controllers. One and a half minutes after takeoff on the clear and sunny afternoon of April 8, 1968, the Number 2 engine of BOAC Boeing 707 G-ARWE broke away from its mounting pylon and fell, tumbling in flames. Captain Cliff Taylor managed an extremely smooth touchdown about 400 yards beyond the Heathrow runway threshold and the aircraft came to a stop 1,400 yards further along the runway. The cabin crew had the doors open and passengers began escaping from the starboard over-wing exit and then via chutes at the forward and rear galley doors. Several explosions occurred and the port wing fell off, the resulting blast hurling flaming debris over the side of the aircraft. The rear escape chute was damaged by the fire and burst but, of the 126 people aboard, most of the 121 survivors had escaped before the arrival of the main fire and rescue services. Thirty-eight people received treatment for injuries and five, including stewardess Barbara Jane Harrison, were overcome by heat and fumes and died aboard G-ARWE. For her bravery in trying to rescue the remaining passengers on that day, Harrison was awarded the George Cross. “An amazing story . . . a fitting tribute to Jane and the other unfortunate people who lost their lives. It is extremely well written and I would highly recommend it.” —Jonathan Wright
An eloquent portrayal of the UK's primary hub of air travel, Kevan James delves into the story of Heathrow Airport and reveals the truth and the legends behind it. Seen not only from the eyes of the author himself, and including his own use of Heathrow, the book also details the lives of some of those who work there. This is an intriguing look at the London air transport hub.
Stories of Victoria Cross and George Cross Holders
Author: The Sebastopol Project
Publisher: Hachette UK
On Courage is a collection of twenty-eight moving and inspirational stories of valour displayed by recipients of the Victoria Cross and George Cross. WITH CONTRIBUTIONS FROM: Alexander Armstrong, Baroness Hale, Bear Grylls, Bill Beaumont, Bobby Charlton, Katherine Grainger, Kelly Holmes, Derek Jacobi, Eddie Redmayne, Frank Bruno, Geoffrey Palmer, Jeremy Irons, Joanna Kavenna, Joanna Lumley, John Simpson, Joseph Calleja, Julian Fellowes, Kate Adie, Ken Dodd, Margaret MacMillan, Mark Pougatch, Mary Berry, Michael Whitehall and Jack Whitehall, Miranda Hart, Richard Chartres, Tom Ward, Will Greenwood, and Willie Carson. From RAF flight engineer Norman Jackson, who climbed out onto the wing of a Lancaster bomber in flight to put out a fire, using a twisted parachute as a rope, on the night his first child was born; children's writer turned Assistant Section Officer Noor Inayat-Khan, who was the first female operator to infiltrate occupied France and refused to abandon what had become the most dangerous post in the country; to Irish seaman and Antarctic explorer Tom Crean, who struck out alone for a supply depot during Captain Scott's expedition to the South Pole to save the life of his ailing companion, these courageous men and women are an inspiration to us all. Written by leading historians and authors Tom Bromley, Saul David, Paul Garlington, James Holland and Dr Spencer Jones, these incredible accounts tell of the recipients' determination and selfless actions in times of war. Each story is introduced by a public figure, including Mary Berry, Bear Grylls, Sir Bobby Charlton, Joanna Lumley, Eddie Redmayne and the late Sir Ken Dodd.
According to Time magazine, Pakistan's President Pervez Musharraf holds "the world's most dangerous job." He has twice come within inches of assassination. His forces have caught more than 670 members of al Qaeda in the mountains and cities, yet many others remain at large and active, including Osama bin Laden and Ayman Al Zawahiri. Long locked in a deadly embrace with its nuclear neighbor India, Pakistan has come close to full-scale war on two occasions since it first exploded a nuclear bomb in 1998. As President Musharraf struggles for the security and political future of his nation, the stakes could not be higher for the world at large. It is unprecedented for a sitting head of state to write a memoir as revelatory, detailed, and gripping as In the Line of Fire. Here, for the first time, readers can get a firsthand view of the war on terror in its central theater. President Musharraf details the manhunts for Osama and Zawahiri and their top lieutenants, complete with harrowing cat-and-mouse games, informants, interceptions, and bloody firefights. He tells the stories of the near-miss assassination attempts, not only against himself but against Shaukut Aziz (later elected prime minister) and one of his top army officers (later the vice chief of army staff), and of the abduction and beheading of Daniel Pearl -- as well as the forensic and shoe-leather investigations that uncovered the perpetrators. He details the army's mountain operations that have swept several valleys clean, and he talks about the areas of North Waziristan where al Qaeda is still operating. Yet the war on terror is just one of the many headline-making subjects in In the Line of Fire. The full story of the events that brought President Musharraf to power in 1999 is told for the first time. He reveals new details of the 1999 confrontation with India in Kashmir (the Kargil conflict) and offers a proposal for resolving the Kashmir dispute. He offers a portrait of Mullah Omar, with stories of Pakistan's attempts to negotiate with him. Concerning A. Q. Khan and his proliferation network, he explains what the government knew and when it knew it, and he reveals fascinating details of Khan's operations and the investigations into them. In addition, President Musharraf takes many stances that will make news. He calls for the Muslim world to recognize Israel once a viable Palestinian state is created. He urges the repeal of Pakistan's 1979 Hudood law. He calls for the emancipation of women and for their full political equality with men. He tells the sad story of Pakistan's experience with democracy and what he has done to make it workable.
From 1946 until the present day, Heathrow has been a building site, as the airport has grown to cope with the demands of being London's main airport. Ian Anderson takes us on a history of the airport, showing us the development of one of the world's busiest airports
The debut novel from Brian Martinez, A Chemical Fire is a minimalist, noir vision of the apocalypse. The story unfolds through the eyes of John Cotard, a science teacher who drugs his life away. After a car accident turns him onto prescription painkillers he allows first his job, then his marriage to crumble, doing nothing to stop it, lost in a haze of chemicals. Then, one night, the world ends. When a great fire sweeps through the land, wiping out most humans and leaving behind a scattering of zombie-like burn victims, he carries on, breaking into houses to steal drugs and hide away. For John the end of the world actually seems to make sense- it's the next logical step in his self-destruction. One-by-one he meets the few remaining survivors including a woman starving herself thin, a combat-obsessed survivalist and a dangerous face from the past he hoped to never see again. As the group travels across the country to seek safety, they face not only the dangers of the dead world around them but of each other, discovering the strange connections they share along the way.