AN AUTHOR who retired to the Isle of Wight following an eventful career is set to release a book inspired by his life as an aeronautical engineer.

John R W Smith — who will officially launch Safety is No Accident, From 'V' Bombers to Concorde, on April 20 — obtained an honours degree from Bristol University in 1962, completing an apprenticeship with British aircraft manufacturer, Avro, in Cheshire the following year.

Remaining in the industry, John's role altered in 1982, when he left the flight department, progressing through a series of posts to become the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) head of aircraft certification in 1993.

Retiring in 1999, John identified a number of books on the subject that had been written by test pilots, but had difficulty finding any from the perspective of an engineer working as a flight test observer in conjunction with the pilot.

He said: "I spent several years writing about the subject, feeling there was a dearth of available material from an aeronautical engineering perspective.

"The book has been written to fill this gap, it is an account of a flight-testing career during the 1960s through to the early 1980s.

"I hope that this account will appeal to a diverse assortment of people, piquing interest beyond those purely aviation-minded and to a large body of the general flying public."

John is hoping to sign copies of his book at Waterstones in Newport in the future.

Safety is No Accident is currently available for pre-order in hardback form on the Amazon website at a price of £25. The book will additionally be stocked by a number of bookstores both on and off the Island after following publication.