Joy-Riding

  • Pashley, Cecil Lawrence

      Mr Cecil Lawrence Pashley

      1911, aged 20

     

      1935

     

    An early pioneer (RAeC certificate No 106) and well-known instructor of large numbers of airmen including F G Miles; born 1891 in Great Yarmouth but lived in Shoreham (a road there, and a bus are named after him, it seems, plus a Tiger Moth called 'Spirit of Pashley').

    He and his brother started a flying school at the newly-opened Shoreham Aerodrome in 1914, but obviously WWI intervened almost straight away and he became a test pilot for the Admiralty, then flew for Central Aircraft Co in Northolt after the war.

    He and F G Miles set up Southern Aircraft Ltd (best known for the 'Martlet').

    Chief Instructor to the Southern Aero Club and its successor the South Coast Flying Club.

    d. 1969

     

  • Phillips, Percival

      Capt Percival Phillips

     mini_-_p_phillips.jpg

     

     

    Western Morning News - Thursday 31 January 1935:

    ST. AUSTELL PILOT HURT 'Plane Crash In Hospital Grounds CRITICAL STATE THIS MORNING

    PERCIVAL PHILLIPS, M.C, St. Austell, was seriously injured when a two-seater aeroplane which was piloting, making forced landing in the dark, crashed into the grounds of Springfield Mental Hospital. Lower Tooting, London, S.W., last night.

    He was first taken to the Springfield Hospital, but was later transferred St. James Hospital, Balham, where it was stated early this morning that he was in a critical condition, with a fractured skull, a broken nose, broken leg, and other injuries.

    His passenger, Mr. James Edward Fry, of Gloucester-terrace, who received injuries to tbe left eye and nose, and was also transferred to the Balham Hospital, was later able take his discharge. The machine, which was owned by Air Services, of Croydon, and was making a flight round London when the mishap occurred, was slightly damaged.

    WAR SERVICE R.A.F. Capt. Percival Phillips, whose London address was given as the Aerodrome Hotel, Croydon, lives in St. Austell. During the war he served as a pilot in the Royal Air Force. Coming down the Turkish lines in Mesopotamia, he was taken prisoner.

    He is partner in the motor firm Messrs. Hill and Phillips, of St. Austell, and is senior partner in the firm of Cornwall Aviation Company, whose headquarters are at St. Austell. He has been one of tbe pilots in Sir Alan Cobham's Flying circus, and his acrobatic stunts in the air will be  remembered by many from the West country who visited the circus. His wife last night informed Western Morning News representative that she had intimation of the accident from London. Mrs. Phillips is the elder daughter of Mr. H. Rowse, of the firm of St. Auslell auctioneers. There are two young children."

     

    d. 1938:

    "‘DEATH OF CAPT. P. PHILLIPS
    FLIGHT greatly regrets to record the death of Capt. Percival Phillips, D.F.C., R.A.F.O., managing director and chief pilot of Air Publicity, Ltd. It appears that Capt. Phillips, on his way home to Heston from banner-towing work at Hull, put his 504 Avro down in a field at Gamlingay, between Bedford and Cambridge, in order to call upon friends for lunch. In taking-off afterwards in gusty weather the machine struck a tree top, hit the ground, and caught fire.
    Capt. Phillips, who had been with Air Publicity since their inception in 1935, was formerly managing director of C. W. A. Scott’s Flying Display, and had safely carried many thousand passengers as a joy-ride pilot. During the war he had seen flying service in Iraq and elsewhere.
    Last summer, flying a veteran Lynx Avro used daily for banner towing, he won the Devon Air Race. Those of us who met him on that occasion and elsewhere recall him as a particularly charming and modest man, with an almost boyish zest for flying which belied his 45 years. To his equally sporting and enthusiastic wife – who was his passenger in the Avro during the Devon Race, and on many other flights – and to his two children, FLIGHT extends most sincere sympathy in their loss.’"

     

  • Scott, Michael David Llewellyn

      Mr Michael David Llewellyn Scott

      1930, aged 24

     

     

    b. 12 Sep 1906 in Eton, Bucks.

    B.A. Cantab. and an 'Old Uppinghamian'. In 1930, a solicitor from Stoke Poges, if you hadn't already guessed :-), and, for a while, v. famous in the Skegness area...

    In 1930, after competing in the King's Cup, he crashed near Skegness when the wheels of his D.H.60X Moth G-EBXG caught a wire fence. He jumped clear, but his mechanic (Howard), who was still strapped in, was 'injured about the head'.

    May 1932, he had a terrifying ordeal (a bit like General and Mrs Lewin in the Sudan swamps, but even worse) in the remote reaches of The Wash; "CRIPPLED 'PLANE ON SANDBANK SET ON FIRE TO ATTRACT ATTENTION  - HULL TRADER TO RESCUE"

    "Captain (sic) M. D. L. Scott, secretary of the Skegness Aero Club, was flying with a passenger named Tingall, from Skegness to Hunstanton, when his 'plane developed engine trouble. They were about halfway across the Wash, and he was compelled to a make forced landing on a sandbank which was uncovered, as it was low tide... they made an effort to swim the five miles to shore, but the current proved too strong. They then tried to attract attention by setting fire to the 'plane. Later the flames were noticed by a small cargo boat named Lizzie and Annie, which came alongside and took Captain Scott and his passenger on board. "

    Only just in time, too - the tide was rising fast... only the engine of the aeroplane remained unburnt... Gosh!

    By 1933, he was offering to take sun-starved midlanders to be braced up a bit in Skegness; 25 bob return from Nottingham or Leicester, 35 shillings from Birmingham: "Nottingham people will be able to fly to Skegness again this summer at fares which will actually be cheaper than the first-class railway rates. This enterprising venture, which was inaugurated last year, is to be resumed again at Easter on a very much bigger scale... The service is to be conducted Mr. M. D. L. Scott, of Eastern Air Services, Skegness".

    The Eastern Air Transport Company carried 30,000 passengers in the 4 years to 1933 without serious incident.

    In November 1934, the Western Daily Press reported thus: "FOUND: AN AEROPLANE. A police constable, while on duty in Pinner, Middlesex, yesterday, found a monoplane in a field. No one seemed to know how the monoplane got there, and the constable began to make inquiries. The machine appeared to be a privately owned one, and was in good condition save for some slight damage to the undercarriage. The monoplane bore the marks G-AAPY and inscribed inside the fuselage was the name "M. D. L. Scott, Skegness." Further inquiries by the officer among the farm hands and the owner of the farm, Mr Hall, showed that someone saw an aeroplane land in a field on Wednesday afternoon. From that time until the constable discovered it yesterday it has been completely unattended, and, far as the police know, unclaimed. A Mr L. Scott, an airman, operates a private aerodrome and club at Winthorpe, a mile or so from Skegness. Pinner police were last night in communication with the police at Skegness."

    [G-AAPY was a Desoutter I, belonging to Michael. It was, indeed, written off in November 1934.)

    He then turned to golf in the late 30s - winner of the 'Witt Cup' in 1938.

    Married firstly to Marguerite; their son, Roderick, was born in December 1943. By then, he was a Flt-Lt (RAF Volunteer Reserve) in Oxford.

    However, by 1948, when he married Miss Patricia Collette Thomas (from Bude, Cornwall) in Zurich, they lived at 400 East 57th St, New York.

    Describing himself as a 'Sales Manager', he travelled (first class) from Durban to Southampton in February 1959, intending to stay a couple of months with the Duke of Somerset, Maiden Bradley, Wiltshire. Like you do.

     

  • Sparks, Francis George Monkhouse

      Capt Francis George Monkhouse Sparks

     

     

     

    "'Sparks', (or 'Sparkie'), the chief flying instructor of the London Aero Club from 1925. "One of the best-known flying instructors in England".

    In 1927, "The leading spirit in the daily routine of flying is the Chief Instructor, Captain Sparks. He has an incurable and infectious optimism which immediately calms and assures the most diffident of pupils. He is possessed with an almost whirlwind energy, and this, together with his fluent and arresting conversation, makes all who come in contact with him unusually alert and active. It is impossible to have the slightest lack of confidence in him as an instructor or imagine him in any difficulty in the air. He is, perhaps, an unconventional pilot instructor, for so many of them are very taciturn and almost dour, due, no doubt, to the long strain of instructional flying.

    He is a pilot of long experience, having been flying since December, 1915, when he joined the RFC. After the war he took up joy-ride flying, and he continued with that to the time he joined the London Club in 1925; flying for the Welsh Aviation Co., the Berkshire Aviation Co and also forming a company himself. He has taken up 57,000 people in his varied career."

    His pupils included Lady Bailey, Winifred Spooner, Lady Heath, Dorothy Brewster Fletcher and Sicele O'Brien.

    He emigrated to Canada and "held Canadian Commercial Pilot's Certificate #269. He flew for McCall Aero Corp, Calgary AB and London Flying Club, London Ontario.

    His fatal accident on 16th March 1934 was as a result of taking-off in Curtiss-Reid Rambler I CF-AUO with the starboard upper wing not locked, it folded after take-off. The Rambler wings could be folded for storage."

    Source: Canadian Aviation Historical Society publications THE FIRST 500 CANADIAN CIVIL PILOTS (Molson) and CANADIAN CIVIL AIRCRAFT REGISTER (Ellis).

    His younger son, Wing Commander Bryan Sparks DSO, was killed in WWII, on August 11 1945.

     

  • Spicer, Dorothy

      Dorothy Spicer

     mini_-_dorothy_spicer.jpg RAeC 9126

     Dorothy Spicer

     

    The 'tall and charming blonde friend' of Pauline Gower.

    b. 31 July 1908 in Hadley Wood, Middlesex.

    "Miss Spicer, however, holds a very high engineering diploma - the difficult 'B' licence for engines. A man holding this licence would have many excellent jobs at his command, but I doubt very much whether Miss Spicer will find her licence of any practical use."

    Amy Mollison, writing in 1934

    Amy was being a little too pessimistic; in 1936, Dorothy was appointed Chief Engineer to the 'British Empire Air Displays', which toured the country with 12 light aeroplanes.

    Dorothy Spicer

    She married Richard Courtney Pearse in April 1938 and they had a daughter, Patricia, in November 1939. Served at RAE Farnborough during WWII, eventually being promoted to Wing Commander.

    d. 23 December 1946 in the crash of a London-Buenos Aires flight near Rio de Janeiro. Her husband was also killed.

    Pauline Gower (only three months before her own death) wrote that "Dorothy is a great loss to civil aviation but even more so to her many friends".

     

  • Youell, Alan Bruce Hamilton

      Mr Alan Bruce Hamilton Youell

    mini_-_a_b_h_youell.jpg 

     b_youell.jpg

    One of the original 16 pilots of Imperial Airways in 1924

    b. 10 Feb 1900 in Portsea Island, Hants.

    RAeC certificate 4909 (1917).

    Awarded Master Pilot's Certificate

    March 1926: "Like the Swallow.—Captain B. Yulle, the Imperial Airways pilot, set a record on Thursday when he flew from London to Amsterdam, a distance of 267 miles, in 100 minutes.

    "October 13, 1947 – A helicopter flies in Switzerland for the first time. It is the Bell 47B G-AKCX of the Irvin-Bell Helicopters Sales presented near the Allmend in Zürich-Wollishofen by the British pilot Alan Bruce Hamilton 'Jimmy' Youell."

    With Imperial Airways pre-war and Railway Air Services post-war.

    d. 19 April 1961 'in or near Addis Ababa, Ethiopia'

     

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