Boulton Paul Aircraft Since 1915

Alec Brew

Since 1915 Boulton Paul Aircraft has been one of the great innovators of British aviation. They built more Sopwith Camels than Sopwiths, the first all-steel airframe, the largest aircraft ever built in Britain, the first with a power-operated gun turret, the famous Defiant fighter, the first single-engine turboprop, and are now World leaders in pow
Date Published :
April 2020
Publisher :
Fonthill Media
Illustration :
404 black and white
Format Available    QuantityPrice
Binding. : Hardback
ISBN : 9781781557518

Dimensions : 9.76 X 6.77 inches
Stock Status : In stock


The ancient Norwich firm of Boulton & Paul were brought into aircraft construction in 1915, and quickly became one of the great innovators. They pioneered metal construction and built the frame of the largest aircraft ever built in Britain, the R.101 airship. The Overstrand, the last of their superlative medium bombers, was the first aircraft in the world to feature a power-operated gun turret, and after their move to Wolverhampton in 1936 and change of name to Boulton Paul Aircraft their gun turrets became a vital component of the war effort, not least in their own Defiant, which fought in the Battle of Britain and was the most successful night fighter in the dark nights of the Blitz. Their post-war Balliol trainer was the World’s first single-engine turboprop and their last production aircraft, because the technology of their gun turrets was translated into their world lead as manufacturers of power operated control units, and then fly-by-wire. Becoming part of the Dowty Group and later GE Aviation, their advanced aerospace product line is now invested in the firm of Moog, still in Wolverhampton, still innovating.

About The Author

Alec Brew is an author and historian.


1 Company History: The Days before the Aeroplane; 2 The First World War; 3 The Aftermath of the War; 4 The P.71A Feederliner; 5 The Sale of the Aircraft Division; 6 The P.75 Overstrand; 7 The Electro-Hydraulic Gun Turret; 8 The Move to Wolverhampton; 9 The P.82 Defiant; 10 Turret Development; 11 Remote-Control and Radar-Guided Guns; 12 Norwich Resumes Production; 13 Further Fighter Projects; 14 Naval Aircraft; 15 The Balliol; 16 Further Trainer Projects; 17 Experimental Aircraft; 18 Sub-Contract Work; 19 Powered Flying Control Units; 20 The Merger with Dowty; 21 The Sidestrand in No. 101 Squadron Service; 22 Sidestrand Development; 23 The Overstrand in RAF Service; 24 Production Build-up; 25 The Battle of Britain; 26 New Tactics; 27 Radar Warfare and Air-Sea Rescue; 28 Target Towing; 29 Training on Defiants; 30 Experimental Flying; Appendix I: Aircraft Built Under Licence; Appendix II: Surviving Boulton Paul-built Aircraft; Appendix III: Boulton Paul Annual Production; Appendix IV: Boulton Paul Gun Turrets; Appendix V: Canberra and Lightning Conversions; Appendix VI: Powered Flying Control Units and Other Equipment P-Series Numbers.

More from this publisher