A Flying Life An Enthusiast s Photographic Record of British Aviation in the s consists of photographs taken by E J Riding, the author s father, who spent his working life in the aviation industry He was apprenticed to A V Roe Company and employed as an aircraft engineer up to the outbreak of war During the war, Riding became an AID inspector and was seconded to Fairey Aviation, London Aircraft Production, and the de Havilland Aircraft Company, where he signed out Halifax bombers and Mosquitoes as airworthy and ready for test flying Sadly, Riding was killed in a flying accident inDuring his short life, he gained a lasting reputation as an engineer, professional photographer, draughtsman, and aero modeller Riding began taking photographs of aircraft in , aged fifteen Fortunately, he kept copious notes recording the locations and dates of when and where the aircraft were photographed More importantly, he noted aircraft colour schemes details rarely recorded by the press at the time The range of aircraft types photographed by Riding includes Tiger Moths, RAF fighters, ultralights, and airliners Together they give an extensive cross section of flying in Britain up to the outbreak of the Second World War The photographs are of excellent quality and taken from a variety of angles they are not all of the sterile bog standard side view Many depict aircraft being stripped for maintenance and servicing, while others show aircraft dumped or having crashed Although approached in a generally light hearted manner, A Flying Life features in depth and informative captions Having grown up with Eddie Riding reading Aeromodeller in the 40 s and 50 s, this is a real insight into the man.Whilst acknowledging the book title, I should have liked to have seen mention of the Aeromodelling aspects of his life, and the relationship with his photographs.An index of aircraft included would have been good as well.Also first woman to make a parachute jump in 1935 page 70 Aren t we forgetting Dolly and others from Edwardian times A slight correction the late Mike Russell did buy Martin Monoplane G AEYY, page 198 and in the best traditions of it s previous metamorphoses, with professional help, created a new fuselage etc to go with the original rebuilt DH 53 wing and tail parts and resulting in the re creation of DH 53 J 7325 used in the Oct 1925 release and re attachment trials with the R33 airship.This DH 53 J 7325 is, I believe, currently displayed at London Colney air museum.Roger Allton A fascinating book written around a collection of photographs taken by an aviation enthusiast in Britain in the 1930s There are notes on the colours of a few of the subjects, just enough to leave the reader begging for. A great book with many wonderful memories of a bye gone age Written by the son of a famous father who travelled the country before the war taking many excellent photographs of the great variety of mainly light aeroplanes that once graced our skies A book to be picked up and savoured over and over again.
- A Flying Life: An Enthusiast's Photographic Record of British Aviation in the 1930s
- Richard Riding
- 06 April 2019 Richard Riding