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Avro Manchester Book Review

By David L. Veres

Date of Review January 2016 Title Manchester
Author Tony Buttler Publisher Guideline Publications
Published 2015 ISBN n/a
Format 36 pages, softbound MSRP (GBP) £13.00


Avro Type 679 Manchester is, author and historian Tony Buttler AMRAeS observes, “considered to be one of the failures of British military aviation history”.

But it nevertheless joined a new breed of RAF Bomber Command types that won the war against Hitler. Now it’s the 103rd installment in the compact, colorful “Warplanes” series.

Coverage logically commences with Manchester design and development – including testing and a somewhat convoluted service introduction. How about that “frictionless take off device”?

Operational notes follow. The airframe proved sound. But engine and hydraulics concerns seriously plagued performance and reliability. The legendary Lancaster succeeded it on Avro production lines. And after barely two years, the Manchester was declared obsolete in June 1943.

An “In Detail” section surveys the evolution of key design elements. Archival drawings and B&W photos illustrate text. Richard J. Caruana’s 1:72-scale plans further confirm the aircraft’s substantial size. And his superb color profiles survey the swath of Manchester color schemes.

Tables recap Manchester specifications, production and units with representative aircraft. A final listing covers kits, decals and accessories. And a two-page “in detail” spread showcases close-up exterior shots.

Now if an enterprising injection-molding manufacturer would now favor us with a kit of Avro’s luckless Manchester!


My sincere thanks to Guideline Publications for this review sample!