Join bestselling and critically acclaimed military historian Max Hastings as he talks about Operation Chastise and the famous Dambusters raid of 1943.

In his new book Chastise, Max Hastings offers a fresh and compelling account of the Dambusters raid. He grew up embracing the story, the classic 1955 movie and the memory of Guy Gibson, the 24-year-old wing-commander who led the raid. In the 21st Century, however, he urges that we should see the dambusters in much more complex shades. The aircrew’s heroism was entirely real, as was the brilliance of Barnes Wallis, inventor of the `bouncing bombs’. But commanders who promised their young fliers that success could shorten the war fantasised as ruthlessly as they did about the entire bomber offensive. Some 1,400 civilians perished in the biblical floods that swept through the Mohne valley, more than half of them Russian and Polish women, slave labourers.

Here once again is a dramatic retake on familiar history by a master of the art. Hastings sets the Dams Raid in the big picture of the bomber offensive and of the Second World War, with moving portraits of the young airmen, so many of whom died; of Barnes Wallis; the monstrous Harris; the tragic Guy Gibson, together with superb narrative of the action of one of the most extraordinary episodes in British history.

We’re delighted to welcome Max Hastings to Oswestry for what should be a fascinating event!

Tickets: £10 (without book - redeemable against a signed copy of Chastise) or £25 (with book - includes a signed copy of Chastise). Tickets available from the bookshop or purchase online with booking fee.

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