Latest updates

Joe Coles in conversation with Al Murray & James Holland : Top 5 World War Warplanes

Friday, 18 June 2021

Had the pleasure of being a guest on the World War II history podcast We Have Ways of Making You Talk with Al Murray and James Holland, you can listen here:

Happy Birthday Spitfire! Our favourite 6 or 7 types of Spitfire

Thursday, 4 March 2021

The Hush-Kit Book of Warplanes manuscript is now with the editor and it’s the Spitfire’s birthday! Let’s talk Spitfires! 

FOR TODAY ONLY: 20% discount on The Hush-Kit Book of Warplanes with discount code: SPITFIRE20


My favourite Spitfire #1 – Spitfire Mk XIV by Paul Beaver

For some time, I have trying to decide which is my favourite of the 73 variants or sub-variants of that…

The Great British Fighter That Never was: The Miles M.20

Tuesday, 12 January 2021

Artwork for The Hush-Kit book of Warplanes by The Teasel Studio 


The M.20 was a thoroughly sensible design, cleverly engineered to be easy to produce with minimal delay at its nation’s time of greatest need, whilst still capable of excellent performance. As it turned out its nation’s need never turned out to be quite great enough for the M.20 to go into production. First flying a mere…

Jan 4 is the date that the Tejas, Fulmar and Vindicator all took their first flights: discount code FIRSTFLIGHT10

Monday, 4 January 2021

Jan 4 is the date that the Tejas, Fulmar and Vindicator all took their first flights. To celebrate this, use discount code FIRSTFLIGHT10 for a 10% discount on The Hush-Kit Book of Warplanes (valid today and tomorrow). 

The manuscript edges closer to completion

Sunday, 3 January 2021

I have no mixers in the house so I'm drinking gin with tap water as I research Soviet electronic warfare aircraft. The manuscript hand-in date is looming: January 31st. I will make it. Head down and keep at it. My Mac has decided this is a great time to embrace mindfulness and takes regular pauses to enjoy the moment, leaving me swearing at a spinning rainbow wheel. Unrelated crises also take the…

Russian World War II fighter to carry the inscription 'Pussy Riot' in Cyrillic

Wednesday, 9 December 2020

Following our contest to choose graffiti for our Soviet fighter aircraft artwork the winner is Stephen Caulfield from Canada with his suggestion 'Pussy Riot'. 

Contest: you choose war graffiti on Soviet fighter plane

Tuesday, 3 November 2020

Nikitin-Shevchenko IS-4 (1941)

If the Nikitin-Shevchenko IS-4 (1941) had gone into service what might pilots or ground crew have scrawled on the tail? You decide on the word or phrase - ideally in Russian and if selected it will appear on the artwork seen in THE HUSH-KIT BOOK OF WARPLANES. Let’s find out about the world’s first variable geometry wing fighter. Leave your suggestions in comments…

The most under-rated Soviet combat aircraft?

Wednesday, 14 October 2020

Speaking to a former Soviet air force pilot convinced me the Su-15 was far better, and certainly more significant, than is commonly thought. The Soviet Sukhoi Su-15 was one of the best interceptors of the 1960s and '70s. It had better acceleration and initial climb rate than the US F-106; compared to the British Lightning it had double the weapon-load and double the endurance. Vitally, this supersonic…

A pacifist’s guide to military aircraft: Warplanes as a guilty pleasure

Saturday, 3 October 2020



The M16 assault rifle, good enough for Goldie Hawn.

Have you ever seen a homemade gun? At the National Army Museum in Chelsea, London, there is a fascinating display of guns made for the IRA. These were not factory produced but cobbled together in sheds and workshops.

They are brutal and naïve looking tools, quite unlike the mass-produced weapons familiar to our eyes. They are…

We have reached 100% but the fight must go on!

Monday, 31 August 2020

The day began at 97%. I watched the figure rise with excitement. I felt a bit sick with nerves. Then we hit 100. I didn’t spit my coffee out with surprise but I did trip over the kitchen bin during my victory dance.

The ‘Hush-Kit Book of Warplanes’ is now going ahead. Thank you. To me it's more the just a screen of virtual confetti, it's the vindication of many years of obsessive writing. My fetishisation…

I did it because I was drunk

Sunday, 9 August 2020

  I was drunk when I said to Unbound that I would attempt to get the Hush-Kit Book of Warplanes to full 100% funding by 30 August 2020. I chose this date as it marks both the anniversary of the first flight of the Vulcan bomber (1952) and my birthday (YEAR WITHELD). As we are at currently at 81% this seems insanely ambitious, but the clock is ticking and there's no point in hanging around. With some…

Weird fact of the day: British Rail designed an interplanetary flying saucer in 1970

Saturday, 1 August 2020


British Rail Flying Saucer (1970)


British Rail, the much missed national rail service, couldn't make a decent sandwich - but that didn't stop them flirting with interplanetary nuclear fusion powered flying saucers. Simply squirt liquid fuel beneath the aircraft, ignite it with a series of lasers, create a nuclear fusion explosion and contain the highly radioactive explosion within…

It's just a bloody plane!

Wednesday, 29 July 2020

Whether it's loyalty or emotional immaturity that led me to keep my boyhood obsession with aeroplanes I can't tell you. I loved the aeroplane books I read as a child. Now, 35 odd years later I am making my own. I’ve had a lot of time to think about it. This is it.

Since I started my aviation site in 2012 I have had the chance to do so many things that would impress my seven-year-old…

Edits in progress
Publication date: TBC
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