Time bombs

It is a dangerous relic of history that there are as many 250,000 unexploded World War Two bombs in Germany. In a bid to find them before they go off—many have, killing and maiming—German bomb squads are buying RAF post-raid reconnaissance photographs, now housed in Edinburgh, to find them. During the War the RAF and US Eighth Air Force dropped 1.3 million tons of high explosive and incendiary bombs on Germany. Every raid was photographed to assess damage. Those photographs hold clues to those that did not explode. I spent time in and around the port city of Kiel, which was heavily and repeatedly bombed, with the bomb-disposal squad of Schleswig-Holstein to write this for The Mail on Sunday. View article

The last Dambuster

The paperback of 617 Going to War with Today’s Dambusters came out in 2013, the year that marked the seventieth anniversary of the famous Dams Raid for which 617 Squadron would forever be known along with their bouncing bombs. The mark the celebrations I went down to Bristol to interview the wonderful George ‘Johnny’ Johnson, now 92, who at the age 21 was the bomb aimer in an Avro Lancaster that attacked the Sorpe Dam. It was a privilege and fascinating to talk to him, one of only three Dambusters still alive and the last British airman on that raid. I wrote this for Radio Times and if you find it interesting would urge you to read Johnny’s own book which came out in 2014. The Last British Dambuster: one man’s extraordinary life and the raid that changed history. (Ebury Press) View article