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They Gave Me a Hurricane

Fighting High Books

They Gave Me a Hurricane


by Charles 'Tich' Palliser DFC

Hardback - 256pp - 234 x 156mm.

World Rights - Fighting High Ltd.

ISBN - 978-0-9562696-8-3


As a teenager ‘Tich’ Palliser became ‘hooked on this flying game’ and aspired to take to the skies. The Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve provided the opportunity and a few months before the Second World War broke out the Yorkshire-born novice was called-up to learn and develop his skills as a combat fighter pilot. In August 1940 the young sergeant aviator, at the controls of a Hawker Hurricane, entered the ferocious aerial melees of the Battle of Britain, fighting for his life, and his colleague’s lives, as he became one of Churchill’s ‘Few’ in the defence of his homeland. Tich met with some combat success but also witnessed the attrition of war at a personal level, losing many squadron friends. Indeed in December 1940 Tich fell victim to enemy fighters. Tich was commissioned in April 1941 and arrived in Malta a month later to play his part in the defence of the beleaguered island. Steadily his score of combat kills rose. He passed the ‘ace’ status and early in 1942 was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross. Soon after he took up instructing duties, and for the remainder of the war, despite the continual threat of sabotage, Tich passed on his hard-won experience to novice pilots in South Africa.

This is Tich’s story in his own words, illustrated with numerous previously unpublished photographs, as the reader accompanies him through the physical tensions and emotional trials of being a Second World War fighter pilot. Tich provides an intimate account of squadron life, including the acquaintances made and coping with the loss of friends. They Gave Me a Hurricane is an extraordinary, gripping, and enthralling account, as told by one of the RAF’s ‘ace’ fighter pilots – a fitting tribute to an outstanding airman and well respected veteran.



'Excellent' rating in Aeroplane Monthly's December edition. 'An intimate account of the physical tensions and emotional trials of squadron life as a wartime fighter pilot, from the close friends made, to coping with their losses in combat.' (Aeroplane Monthly, December 2012)

'They Gave Me a Hurricane is a highly detailed account ... The author's descriptions of his encounters with the enemy are exciting and dramatic ... I would recommend this book to all those interested in the boys of Fighter Command' (Britain at War Magazine - Alexander Nicoll - July 2012)

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