Air Pictorial

Aviation-related Magazines Guide

Magazine Data

Availability: News-stand           Issues per Year: 12
ISSN: 0965-1890           Barcode:
First Year: 1951           Last Year: 2002

Publisher: HPC Publishing
Country: United Kingdom         Language: English

Main Genre: general
Exclusively Aviation?: Yes

Status: Ceased

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This magazine started life as ‘Air Defence Corps Gazette’ in 1939, published in a small page format. The following year it enlarged to a regular magazine-size page format. From March 1941, it was published under the title ‘Air Training Corps Gazette: The Journal of the Air Training Corps’, resetting the issue numbering to Vol.1 No.1. What would have been Vol.6 No.6 June 1946 adopted the title ‘Air Reserve Gazette’, and restarted the numbering at Vol.1 No.1 again. This multiple renumbering evidently caused much confusion, because from January 1947 the numbering was reset to Vol.9 No.1, reflecting the cumulative volumes from 1939. In 1951 (Vol.12 No.1) the title ‘Air Pictorial & Air Reserve Gazette’ was adopted and in April 1958 the ‘…Air Reserve Gazette’ part of the title was dropped. The magazine has always featured large clear b+w photos and well researched articles on worldwide contemporary and historical aviation subjects. The editorial line was always strongly in support of the British armed forces. The magazine survived the appearance of more colourful rivals during the 1960s and early 1970s mainly due to the quality and range of feature articles printed.

A change of editor in 1988 saw a change in editorial direction – as a result of which the circulation figures ‘fell off a cliff’, and the magazine disappeared from many newsagents shelves. In recent years a change of owner and editor has slowly brought the circulation back up to reasonable levels. The current incarnation offers a wide range of shorter, (maximum of 4 pages), articles on airshows, military and civil movements, UK civil register changes, news and UK biased historical/modern features. In 2002 the magazine was renamed ‘Aviation News’ (see below).

See other aviation-related magazines from United Kingdom.

2 thoughts on “Air Pictorial

  1. I have some corrections and additions to make (eg Air Pictorial started before 1951 – I have a copy from April 1950). Also can supply scans of some magazines listed with no illustration.
    can someone from the website please contact me to advise how to do this? the link to “suggest an edit” doesn’t seem to work (I can’t see the form to download it – link doesn’t work – just takes you to “leave a comment”).
    Chris Semmens

  2. Sorry, it seems I have inadvertantly removed the plugin that makes the ‘suggest an edit’ feature work. I will work on that.

    Please send you corrections and comments to I am certainly interested in adding scans that are currently missing.

    Thanks very much for your interest.

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