Brit pilot's secret Battle of Britain diary details life in the skies
A brave British pilot's secret diary of the Battle of Britain has been published, revealing the harrowing reality of life protecting the skies for the first time.
George Barclay kept a day-to-day log of the conflict, against strict Ministry of Defence security rules, the Sun reported.
It tells how he flew Hurricanes and Spitfires and survived being shot down three times - which he humbly describes as a "most novel experience."
Barclay reveals how he crashed his plane without landing gear and escaped from occupied France by turning his uniform inside out.
The diary is said to be the only one written by a pilot of either side.
But it laid undiscovered for years until Barclay's death, when it was discovered by his family in a small parcel with his Distinguished Flying Cross.
It has now been published with the help of George's younger brother Richard, 86, and historians who pieced together his unique story.
Pilot Barclay was just 20 when he was called up to fight against the Nazis in 1939 and trained as a fighter pilot.
His diary was written on two exercise books filled with scraps of writing paper, with each page detailing his experiences and emotions as he fought for his country.
It finishes before the British and Americans secured victory, when Barclay was killed in action at the age of 22 as he commanded a Hurricane squadron at El Alamein.