Discovering the Undersea World, by Ley Kenyon

Discovering the Undersea World
by Ley Kenyon
Author’s copy

Ley Kenyon was an artist, war hero and personal friend. During WW2 he was a rear gunner with the Canadian 419 Bomber Squadron and earned a DFC for his efforts. When his plane was hit on his 47th raid the crew bailed out agreeing to meet later in Spain. He almost succeeded when he was arrested and posted to the notorious prisoner-of-war camp Stalag Luft 3 at Sagan in Germany. In the camp he was encouraged to keep fit and hold art classes by a Squadron Leader who, unknown to Ley, was in the process of constructing an escape tunnel with a few trusted inmates. Ley earned their trust and was later invited to join the team to forge the documents the men would require to evade capture and to make a pictorial record of the underground project. In 1945, suspecting the advance of Russian troops, the drawings were sealed in a canister and hidden in one of the tunnels which they flooded before the prisoners were evacuated. Their march ground to a halt when they encountered a British tank division. It ended Ley’s war. On his return to England news of his involvement in ‘The Great Escape’ won him welcome attention which led to many more art commissions (he recovered the drawings from the flooded tunnel later). He became an ardent diver and underwater photographer in the early years of diving. He produced many books about diving and the underwater world – illustrating them himself.

Hardback in protective cellophane cover.  No dust jacket. Good condition.
John Bevan bookplate on front endpaper.
Title page was originally dedicated “To Marie Louie & Paul & Nina … with love, Ley”. A sticker has been placed over the dedication inscribed by the author “Own copy. Please return to L.K. 37 Cranley Gdns SW7”. The sticker has caused the page to wrinkle slightly. Inside pages in otherwise good condition apart from a small mark on the outside edge of page 11/12.

Black and white photos and illustrations throughout.
1966, University of London Press Ltd, London
144 pages, 142mm x 200mm (approx. 5.5 in x 8 in)


1 in stock

Additional information

Weight 30 kg
Dimensions 30 × 24 × 2 cm