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Blue Streak

Britain's Medium Range Ballistic Missile

John Boyes



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15 January 2019
History; Nuclear weapons; Military aircraft
In the early 1950s the United States wished to concentrate its defence resources on the development of a 4,000 mile range intercontinental ballistic missile. As a stop-gap measure, US defence chiefs hoped to assist Britain with the development of its own intermediate range missile. Despite US concerns that British resources were limited the Air Ministry nonetheless proceeded with the missile, called Blue Streak, to fulfil the operational requirement which would give Britain an independent deterrent which should remain invulnerable until the early 1970s.

Blue Streak: Britain's Medium Range Ballistic Missile traces the path from the political decision to issue the contracts through the early development and testing both in the UK and in Australia. The reasons for the project's cancellation are considered and Blue Streak's subsequent role as the first stage of the ELDO civilian satellite launcher is noted. A requirement of the project was the need to base the missiles in underground launchers to protect them from attack. This aspect of the project is fully covered using recently available information and specially drawn plans.
By:   John Boyes
Imprint:   FONTHILL
Country of Publication:   United Kingdom
Dimensions:   Height: 234mm,  Width: 156mm,  Spine: 23mm
Weight:   505g
ISBN:   9781781557006
ISBN 10:   1781557004
Pages:   240
Publication Date:   15 January 2019
Audience:   General/trade ,  ELT Advanced
Format:   Hardback
Publisher's Status:   Active

John Boyes, a chartered accountant, has had a long-term interest in the development of early strategic missiles. His first two books on the Thor ballistic missile attracted wide interest. Britain's Blue Streak, developed in the second half of the 1950s was potentially Thor's successor had the project not been cancelled but nonetheless is an obvious follow-on volume. The author is a member of the committee of the Royal Air Force Historical Society and was financial controller of the Bomber Command Memorial.

Reviews for Blue Streak: Britain's Medium Range Ballistic Missile

There is a lot of technical details and more political machinations present in this tale, but John Boyes is able to put it all together into an easy-to-read book. I read this tome over three nights and it was hard to put down. --IPMS/USA

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