304 Squadron Wellingtons Against the U-boat Book Review
By Ray Mehlberger
|Date of Review||December 2005||Title||304 Squadron Wellingtons Against the U-boat|
|Author||Mariusz Konarski||Publisher||Mushroom Model Publications|
|Format||88 pages, softbound||MSRP (USD)||$22.95|
This latest book, from Mushroom Model Publications (MMP), tells the story of the 304 (Polish) Squadron, RAF. From it’s formation, in 1940, it was continuously involved in operations until the end of WWII. This was first with Bomber Command and then Coastal Command.
Initially, it drew it’s personnel from the 2nd and 6th Air Regiments of the pre-war Polish Air Force. The unit flew various marks of Wellington bombers and maritime reconnaissance aircraft. As a bomber unit the squadron flew operations over occupied Europe during a difficult time, and lost one third of the establishment.
From May 1942, 304 Squadron flew anti-submarine patrols with Coastal Command, and continued in this role, with great success, until the end of the war. The short post-war career of the unit was in Transport Command, flying Warwick and Halifax transports.
The book is in MMP’s usual 9 ½” x 6 ½”, soft-cover, format. It is 88 pages long. The book contains 130 black and white wartime photos and two color photos (on the back cover), five charts, an area of operation map, footnotes and appendices.
In the back of the book are 28 color profiles of various marks of Wellingtons that 304 Squadron flew, there is also two profiles of Fairey Battle trainers and two of Warwicks. I thought it unusual that the captions under these profiles are both in English and Polish languages. I think this is a nod to Polish readers, since the book is about a Polish Sqaudron. The rest of the book is in English only.
This new book will appeal to aviation historians of RAF operations, aircraft enthusiasts and modelers. It is an invaluable addition to any aviation book shelf.