Dilip Sarkar MBE FRHistS FRAeS


Author of over 60 well-received books during a lifetime of dedication, inspired by the Spitfire and Battle of Britain stories, Dilip now writes for Pen & Sword – and is himself a living link to the past, given his privileged relationships with countless wartime survivors.

Specialising in the human element of the Battle of Britain and Spitfire stories,  and sharing them in a uniquely engaging and accessible way, Dilip’s first book was published in 1990. Throughout the 1990s and early 2000s, he organised numerous high-profile exhibitions, book launches and symposiums, attended by a host of the Few and wartime personalities – providing the public unprecedented opportunities to meet names from the pages of history. This visionary approach was recognised in 2003, when Dilip was made an MBE for ‘services to aviation history’.

Elected to the Fellowship of the Royal Historical Society in 2006, Dilip has First Class Honours in Modern History from University Worcester, and is a retired police detective whose work is renowned for being evidence-based – often challenging long-accepted myths; he has worked on numerous television documentaries on an international basis throughout his long career, on and off-camera, and continues to do so.

In recognition of his lifetime commitment and contribution, in 2024 Dilip was elected to the Fellowship of the Royal Aeronautical Society, following a stringent peer-reviewed process, and membership of London’s prestigious Royal Air Force Club.A firm supporter of the Battle of Britain Memorial Trust, in 2022, he initiated ‘Battle of Britain: The People’s Project’ (see dedicated page) as a partnership between the Trust and Pen & Sword, and is currently writing the Trust’s official history of the Battle of Britain in eight volumes. – a career-crowning project of one million words. The first two of these, The Gathering Storm: Prelude to the Spitfire Summer of 1940, and Breaking Storm: 10 July – 12 August 1940, are now available.


As Battle of Britain fighter ‘ace’ Wing Commander George Unwin DSO DFM famously said, ‘If you want to know anything about the Battle of Britain and the Few, don’t ask us, ask Dilip!’