The Bridge to Airpower

Logistics Support for Royal Flying Corps Operations on the Western Front, 1914�18

  • Subject: Aviation | World War I
  • Format:
  • Pages:
  • Published:
    September 15, 2015
  • ISBN-10:
  • ISBN-13:
  • Product Dimensions:
    9.25 × 6.125 × 1 in
  • Product Weight:
    12 oz
Hardcover $44.95
Member Price $35.96 Save 20%
Book: Cover Type


In the latest addition to the History of Military Aviation series, Peter Dye describes how the development of the air weapon on the Western Front during World War I required a radical and unprecedented change in the way that national resources were employed to exploit a technological opportunity. World War I has long been recognized as an industrial war that consumed vast amounts of materiel and where logistical superiority gave the Allies an overwhelming advantage. The Bridge to Air Power is the first study that demonstrates how logistical competence provided a war-winning advantage for the Royal Flying Corps, the precursor to the Royal Air Force. It draws on a wide range of literature and original material to quantify these achievements while providing a series of illuminating case studies based around key battles. In particular, it highlights how the Royal Flying Corps’ logistical organization was able to maintain high levels of resilience and agility while sustaining military outputs under widely different operational conditions —successfully introducing many of the techniques that now comprise modern supply chain management.

About the Author

Editorial Reviews

"Peter Dye, a former-two-star logistician with the Royal Air Force, has produced an innovative and original study of the logistics infrastructure that supported Royal Flying Corps (RFC) operations on the Western Front during the First World War.... [I]t is worth mentioning the production quality of Bridge to Airpower, which is excellent, it's extremely reasonable price and the range photographs from the RAF Museum's extensive (and underutilized) archive. Dye has made an important contribution to the history and historiography of British air power in the First World War, and the history and historiography of logistics more generally. It is a study I recommend most strongly." The Society for Army Historical Research
"...Presented with an expert grasp of both the sources and issues, Peter Dye's work shows how the RFC and, later, the RAF maintained an effective supply chain during four years of conflict..." The Western Front Association Stand To!
"The Bridge to Airpower: Logistics Support for Royal Flying Corps Operations on the Western Front, 1914-18 is recommended highly; it is a 'must-have' for serious students of World War I history." Over the Front
"The achievement of the RFC logistic system was massive and, even allowing for a degree of professional pride on the part of the author of The Bridge to Airpower, can only be so regarded. From a standing start in 1914, resilient, responsive, innovative systems evolved to sustain an ever-expanding force in the face of high but variable wastage, erratic supply and rapid technological change. This book does full justice to that amazing achievement ù and I am enlightened and amazed!" RAF Historic Society Journal 62
The Bridge to Airpower aptly describes the role of logistics in support of the Royal Flying Corps on the Western Front. Aircraft were, and continue to be, complex machines that required significant labor to produce, maintain, fuel, fly, and repair. The depth of operations required to support such machines comes forth in Dye’s telling of the story.” —The Strategy Bridge