Saturday, June 11, 2016

Bello reissues three of Sir Francis Chichester's air adventures, 50 years following his epic solo circumnavigation

Marking 50 years since Sir Francis Chichester’s epic voyage, on 16 June 2016 Bello is to reissue in e-book and print on demand his aviation adventures Solo to Sydney, Alone over the Tasman Sea and Ride on the Wind, originally published in 1930, 1933 and 1936.

Aviator and sailor Sir Francis Chichester is best known for being the first and fastest person to sail around the globe single-handedly in The Gipsy Moth IV, setting out from Plymouth on 27 August 1966. He completed the voyage at the age of 65 with just one stop and 226 days at sea and was knighted for his circumnavigation in 1967. Chichester went on to create several books and films about his intrepid sailing and flying adventures, all gripping accounts of a lone adventurer’s tenacity and triumph over the forces of nature.
Born in Devon and educated at Marlborough College, Chichester emigrated to New Zealand at the age of 18 and spent ten years in forestry, mining and property development. On his return to England he learned to fly, and in the original Gipsy Moth seaplane he became the first person to complete an East-West solo flight across the Tasman Sea, for which he was awarded the inaugural Johnson Memorial Trophy.

Solo to Sydney (1930) recounts Chichester’s 1929 solo flight to Sydney. The tale brings together details of the countries he visited, the characters he met and his scrapes and near misses along the way, including time lost in the Australian outback following a crash without water and with limited fuel.
Alone over the Tasman Sea (1933) is Chichester’s telling of his 1931 seaplane solo-flight over the Tasman Sea from New Zealand to Australia – the first of its kind. Taking place when flight was still in its dangerous infancy, Chichester’s adventure tested his courage, resolution and stamina. It is an account told with dry wit and humour.  

Ride on the Wind (1936) follows Chichester’s adventures with his seaplane Madame Elijah, as he ventures forth from Australia on an epic flight that included crossing into forbidden territory in Formosa in a raging storm, a narrow escape from Chinese pirates, another from a typhoon, and a spectacular crash in Japan.  
Further 2016 commemorations for Sir Francis Chichester’s voyage include:

·         A re-enactment of the departure of the Gipsy Moth IV from Plymouth pier with a gun fired as it was 50 years ago and the unveiling of a bronze plaque marking the sailor’s return in Plymouth, on 27 August

·         A talk by Sir Francis’ son, Giles Chichester, about the famous voyage at Waterstone’s bookshop, New George Street, Plymouth on 26 August

·         The original Gipsy Moth IV, now owned by charitable trust The Gipsy Moth Trust, circling Britain crewed by ex-servicemen and women to raise money for the charity Help for Heroes
Bello also publishes Sir Francis Chichester’s Gipsy Moth Circles the World (1967), the international bestseller published just months after the completion of Chichester’s historic journey which inspired the first solo around-the-world race, Alone across the Atlantic (1961), Atlantic Adventure (1962), and The Romantic Challenge (1971).

Bello is a digital imprint, launched by Pan Macmillan in 2011 to bring out-of-print books by iconic authors to a new readership in the 21st century.

For more information on Bello see

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