AN RAF man's high-flying achievements that have been overlooked are highlighted in a biography of his life.

Sir Robert Brooke-Popham, who is buried in West Bagborough, where members of his family still live, is The Man Who Took the Rap, according to the book's author, Peter Dye.

Sir Robert (1878-1953) is unkindly remembered for his involvement in the fall of Singapore in February 1942 and was widely pilloried as the man chiefly responsible for the defeat and the subsequent loss of the British Empire.

Mr Dye outlines how Sir Robert was a key figure in the early development of air power whose "significant and varied achievements have been overlooked" because of the loss of Singapore.

He played a major role in developing the first modern military logistic system, the creation of the RAF staff college and the organisational arrangements that underpinned Fighter Command’s success in the Battle of Britain.

Mr Dye challenges longstanding views about performance as Commander-in-Chief Far East and, based on new evidence, offers a more nuanced narrative that sheds light on British and Allied preparations for the Pacific War, inter-service relations and the reasons for the disastrous loss of air and naval superiority that followed the Japanese attack.

The Man Who Took the Rap hones in on the misguided attempts at deterrence, in the absence of a co-ordinated information campaign, and the unprecedented security lapse that betrayed the parlous state of the Allied defences.