King's Cup - 1930

  • Douglas, Rod

     Capt Rod Douglas

     rod douglas 2  c. 1955


    A Director of de Havilland South Africa, and one of the founders of the Johannesburg Light Aeroplane Club.

    Rod Douglas and Geoffrey de Havilland

    In 1932, with Geoffrey de Havilland

    Flight, May 2, 1930: "S. African King's Cup Entrant CAPT. DOUGLAS, of the Johannesburg Light Aeroplane Club, who will represent the Aero Club of South Africa in the King's Cup Race, will fly to England in a Junkers five-seater monoplane."

    HISTORY OF BARAGWANATH AIRFIELD AND JLPC: "In 1926 two WWI pilots, Captains Rod Douglas and Stan Halse, met at a little hotel run by Douglas, which later became famous as a Johannesburg landmark, known as Uncle Charlies, named after big game hunter and entrepreneur, Charles de Jongh, who also ran a filling station at the well-known intersection.
    Over drinks, Douglas and Halse discussed the formation of a flying club and approached Rand Mines for permission to use the grounds previously used for the first aerodrome."


  • du Boulay, G GH

     Flt-Lt G GH du Boulay




  • Dudley, W A

     Mr W A Dudley


  • Fairbairn, George Patrick

     Mr George Patrick Fairbairn



       b. 1 Sep 1908, Skipton, Victoria, Australia

    He made an attempt in 1931 to set a record for the flight to Australia: 

    "AIRMAN’S AMBITION. To Break Flight to Australia Record.

    The Australian airman Mr. G. P. Fairbairn, who arrived at Lyons aerodrome yesterday evening in his light aeroplane, has had to postpone his departure this morning owing to unfavourable weather. As soon conditions improve, he will take off for Italy.

    Mr Fairbairn made a short stop at Le Bourget yesterday before going on to Lyons. Mr. G. P. Fairbairn. who is a Cambridge graduate and the nephew of Mr. “Steve” Fairbairn, the famous rowing coach, learned to fly at the University. Last autumn, with a Cambridge friend named Shenstone, he left on a flight to Kenya, which had to be abandoned owing to mishaps in Italy and Egypt.

    Mr. Fairbairn’s route on this occasion will be via Marseilles, Catania, Tunis, Benghazi, Cairo, Bagdad, Task, Karachi, Calcutta, Rangoon, Victoria Point, Singapore, and Batavia to Port Darwin." - Hartlepool Northern Daily Mail - Friday 20 February


    However, it eventually took him nearly two months to get there:

    "AUSTRALIAN FLIGHT Mr. Fairbairn Reaches Port Darwin PORT DARWIN.

    . Mr. G. P. Fairbairn. the Australian airman who set out from Hanworth aerodrome, England. February 19 to beat Wing Commander Kingsford-Smith’s record under ten days for a light aeroplane flight between England and Australia, arrived here at. 3.27 this afternoon. The record is held by Mr. C. W, A. Scott, who overtook Mr. Fairbairn and completed the flight in 9 days, 4 hours. 11 minutes." - Portsmouth Evening News - Saturday 18 April 1931

    'Flight' obviously lost interest:

    "G. P. Fairbairn on a Spartan "Arrow" ("Gipsy II”). Left Hanworth February 19. Reached Nice February 20. Flight abandoned." Flight, October 30 1934


    m. 1933 Mary Robertson [Murray] 1 daughter b. 1934


    d. 26 May 1935

    "PLANE NOSE DIVES INTO ROAD - Cambridge Pilot and Wife Killed

    MELBOURNE, Sunday.

    G. P. Fairbairn, former Cambridge man, and his wife, formerly Miss Mary Murray, Melbourne, were killed to-day when their ’plane crashed on a road near Essendon Aerodrome. The machine was the same as that in which Mr. Fairbairn flew from England to Australia in 1931 in company with Mr. K. Shenstone[sic].

    Mrs. Fairbairn was in the pilot’s seat at the time of the tragedy. Apparently the engine stalled and the ’plane went into a spin, nose diving to the road. A motor-lorry passing at the time was grazed by one of the wings.

    Mr. Fairbairn was one of the first Cambridge undergraduates to own his own ’plane and was a keen member of the University Squadron. While they were at the University together in 1930, Mr. Fairbairn and Mr. Kenneth Shenstone set out to fly to Kenya and back, but they crashed in landing at Heliopolis on the outward journey, and they abandoned the flight.

    In the spring of 1931 they [sic] attempted to break Sir Charles Kingsford-Smith’s record of under ten days for a flight from England to Australia. They [sic] completed the journey, but took 57 days, and were overtaken on the way by Mr. C. W. A. Scott, who set up a record of 9 days 3 hours [sic]." - Belfast News-Letter - Monday 27 May 1935


     Obviously there are conflicting reports as to whether George was accompanied on his Australia flight by Kenneth Shenstone!


     see also Obituary - George Patrick Fairbairn - Obituaries Australia (



    Melbourne, Sept. 23, 1935.

    Estate valued at more than £91,639 was left by the late George Patrick Fairbairn, grazier, of Wooloomanta station, Lara, who, with his wife, was killed in an aeroplane crash earlier in the year. The late Mr. Fairbairn bequeathed Wooloomanta to the first of his sons who should attain the age of 25 years, but, as he had no son, the station is left to his nephew, George Michael Wheatley. The residue of the estate was left to his wife, but, as she was killed at the same time as her husband, it is now left to Fairbairn's infant daughter, Mary Frances Fairbairn, aged 21 months."


  • Falk, Roland John

     Mr Roland John Falk

      1932, aged 17

       c.1955, aged c.40

    'Roly', forever remembered for rolling an Avro Vulcan at Farnborough in 1955, presumably wearing his habitual pinstripe suit and tie.

    "Trained by the London Aeroplane Club at Stag Lane. Started commercial flying with Air Commerce Ltd, now [i.e. 1936] busy flying daily Dawn Express newspaper service from Croydon to Paris. Chews his C.D.C. [whatever that means] Thrives on fog."

    RAE Farnborough during WWII, including flights on captured German aircraft. Post-war Avro test pilot (especially the Vulcan, of course).

    OBE in 1955; died 1985 in Jersey

    [With thanks to John Falk, who is Roly's son, and Bill Thorn's (q.v.) grandson]

  • Ferguson, Austin Bruce

     Mr Austin Bruce Ferguson


    photo: 1927, aged 29

     A Stockbroker from Surrey



  • Fielden, Edward Hedley

     Flt-Lt (Sir) Edward Hedley Fielden KCVO CB DFC AFC



    'Mouse', b. 1903. Prince of Wales' (i.e. Edward VII's) pilot, later Captain of the King's (and Queen's) Flights until 1962.

    DFC, 1943: "This officer has flown on various operational missions, some of a most hazardous nature. He has displayed a high standard of operational efficiency, setting an example which has contributed materially to the high morale of the air crews under his command. His great organising ability has proved a valuable asset.”

    Edward Fielden (RAF officer) - Wikipedia

    d. 1976


  • Findlay, Maxwell Hutcheon

     Capt Maxwell Hutcheon 'Max' Findlay


    photo: 1918, when a Captain in the RAF, aged 20


    d. 1st October 1936, in the Schlesinger England-Johannesburg Race; the Airspeed AS.6J Envoy 3 G-AENA 'Gabrielle' struck trees after take-off and crashed at Abercorn, Rhodesia, killing Max Findlay and wireless operator A H Morgan.

    The unclaimed prize money from the race  - £6,000 out of the £10,000 total fund - went to the families of those who had died; £2,000 each to Mrs. Max Findlay and Mrs. A. H. Morgan, and £2,000 placed in trust for the child of Capt. Findlay.


  • Gault, Andrew Hamilton

     Lieut-Col Andrew Hamilton Gault D.S.O.

      1929, aged 47


    An English-born Canadian who served in the Boer War and then founded a regiment - Princess Patricia's Own Canadian Light Infantry - with his own money in 1914. Recruiting was brisk: ten days later the regiment was 1,098 strong. He became its third commanding officer, but was wounded several times and lost his left leg. On May 7th, 1915 they were 635; by the end of the following day they numbered 150. Andrew was one of only two of its officers to survive WWI.

    In 1920 his fiancée, a Mrs Kathleen Blackader, died when the car he was driving skidded and overturned; she was trapped underneath and he was unable to free her. Her daughter Margaret later became his ward.

    In 1922 he 'quietly' married Dorothy Blanche Shuckburgh, and they settled at Hatch Court, Taunton. His military record stood him in good stead when he tried for election as an Unionist (i.e. Conservative) M.P., but he narrowly failed to overturn a near-3,000 Liberal majority in 1923. He was back the following year, however, this time successfully, and was Taunton's M.P. until 1935 - serving on various committees and much involved in local politics: President of the 'Society of Somerset Folk', and he regularly gave a cup for the 'best fat beast' in the Taunton Christmas Show.

    He and Dorothy flew to Germany in 1933 as members of a party making a holiday tour, and met (speaking of fat beasts) Herman Goering and Adolf Hitler. [Lynsdey Everard, A E Borton and Mrs and Mrs Runciman were also on this tour].

    d. 28th November 1958 in Montreal, aged 76.

    Hamilton Gault - Wikipedia


  • Gibbons, Frank George

     Flt-Lt Frank George Gibbons

      1918, when a 2nd Liet, aged 19

      1930, aged 31

    from Peterborough; WWI air ace (14 victories); killed in May 1932, flying into a tree during the Morning Post (Heston) air race.

    1932: "The tragic loss of Fit. Lt. Frank George Gibbons during the race organised by the Morning Post on Saturday, May 21, was one which came as a shock to his many friends. It would appear fairly certain that his death was due to his colliding with a tree while looking at his maps inside the cockpit, and was in no way caused by any defect in the "Spartan" three-seater he was flying at the time. He was a particularly likeable character, besides being an outstanding expert as a pilot.

    He was one of those people about whom one never heard any gossip, and his likeable character is shown by the fact that although he was the best of companions at the kind of party which usually finishes an air meeting, he was equally at home spending an afternoon playing with young children.

    He first joined the R.F.C. in June, 1917, as an air mechanic (cadet), and gained his commission in November of the same year. He was gazetted as a Fit. Lt. on June 1, 1926, and won the D.F.C. for services in the field.

    Not only was he a very fine pilot of land aircraft, but also of flying boats. On January 5, 1931, he went to Calshot, and from there he was posted to No. 204 Flying Boat Squadron at Mountbatten, Plymouth, of which he was a member at the time of his death.

    He was a brilliant navigator, and this form of race was one in which he was particularly interested. It is perhaps, therefore, some consolation to feel that if he himself could have had the choice, he would have undoubtedly have chosen to die when flying "flat-out" during such a race, in the manner he did.

    The funeral took place at Ipswich on Wednesday, May 25. He was 33 years of age and unmarried."


  • Gillan, John Woodburn

     F/O John Woodburn Gillan DFC and bar, AFC 



    b c1907. From Edinburgh.

    Established a world's land plane record in an RAF Hawker Hurricane on February 10, 1938; flying "blind", he covered the 327 miles from Edinburgh to London in 48 minutes, an average speed of 408.75mph. This feat earned him the nickname of 'Downwind Gillan'.

    AFC in January 1939 as Sqn Ldr.

    Killed in WWII: 29th August 1941, when a Wing Commander (pilot) RAF; buried Dunkirk.

  • Goodwin, Geoffrey

      Mr Geoffrey Goodwin



     RAF Officer


  • Green, D S

      Mr D S Green





  • Guest, Diana

     Miss Diana Guest

    Royal Aero Club Certificate 8756 (27 Aug 1929)


    photo: 1929, aged 20


    Frederick's daughter; later sculptress Diana Guest Manning. [Mr Manning was one of her 3 husbands].

    "I was born and brought up in the country in England. My parents, Amy Phipps and Frederick Guest, met in India and married a year later in London. They settled in a beautiful Queen Anne house near Oakham named Burley on the Hill".

    diana guest1929


    Miss Diana Guest, the young daughter of Captain the Hon. Freddie Guest, P.C., C.B.E., D.S.O., etc., Chairman of the National Flying Services, was born in 1909, and recently made her debut in society. She has also just made her debut in the air, and took her pilot's A certificate recently. She and her father had their flying lessons at the same time, and took their respective tickets simultaneously for although Captain Guest, who was born in 1875, has long been interested in flying, and was Secretary of State for Air from 1921-1922, he was not the holder of a pilot's A certificate. "

    The Sketch, 1929

    In 1981 "Miss Guest, who divides her time between Paris and Palm Beach, Fla., and whose works have been exhibited in museums around the world, has donated 27 pieces of her sculpture to Old Westbury Gardens".

    Diana owned:

    • 1929 Hawker Tomtit G-AALL, then
    • 1930 DH.80A Puss Moth, G-AAZP, which later became SU-AAC in Egypt and was impressed in WWII as HL537.

    d. 1994


  • Guest, Frederick Edward

      Capt (later Sqn-Ldr, Air-Comm) the Hon Frederick Edward Guest CBE DSO MP

     mini_-_hon_f_e_guest.jpg 1929, aged 54




    b. 14 June 1875 in London.

    'Freddie', Winston Churchill's cousin; Diana's (q.v.) father; Liberal then Conservative politician (Secretary of State for Air in 1920-22, despite the fact that, at the time, he knew "very little about aviation, but it is to his credit that he does not pretend to know").

    Died 28 April 1937.


  • Hope, Walter Laurence

      Capt Walter Laurence 'Wally' Hope

      1917, when a 2nd Lieut in the RFC, aged 20

      1928, aged 31


    Technical director of Air Freight.

    b. 9 Nov 1897 in Walton, Liverpool

    Aged 18, and described as a "trick-cyclist", he was summoned in 1915 for committing a breach of the Realms Act by taking a photograph of one of his Majesty's ships at Barrow; he pleaded not guilty, admitted that he was carrying a camera, and was fined £5.

    A close friend of Bert Hinkler, he made an extensive search over the Alps at his own expense when Bert went missing on his fatal flight in 1934, but then sued the Daily Mirror when they published their hair-raising account of his exploits, "Captain Hope's Ordeal in the Alps". He said there was "not one word of truth in it."

     m. 1920 Marjory [Stone]

    Three-time winner of the King's Cup Race (1927, 1928 and 1932)

    In the 1926 King's Cup race, "he had to descend at Oxford while racing for home in the last lap with a small “airlock" in his petrol pipe, which effectually put his tiny Moth machine out of the running. He landed in a small field - so small that he found it impossible take off again when his minor trouble had been rectified without pushing his  plane through three fields to a broader stretch of country, where he could rise. By this time it was so late that he decided that would abandon the race and go on at his leisure to Hendon.

    Interviewed at his home in Hendon yesterday, Mr. Hope said: “The only thing that I am really disappointed about is that I feel sure that if this trifling mishap had not occurred I should most certainly have won. For three laps I was racing neck and neck with Captain Broad, with an aggregate speed equal to his - between 90 and 91 m.p.h." Daily Herald

    At the end of the 1928 race, "Thinking all was over he proceeded to loop and stunt before landing, and having landed switched on his well known winning smile. Suddenly there was a terrific hooting, and Sir Francis McClean in his white Rolls-Royce came tearing across to tell Hope he had not crossed the finishing line... Within 30 seconds Hope was in the air again, discovered the finishing line, landed, and again switched on the winning smile fortissimo." C G Grey

    Entered for the MacRobertson Race in 1934 (No 24) but didn't take part in the end.

     m. 1954 Hilda L [Stone or Hunt]

    d. Oct 1979 - Isle of Wight


  • Hordern, Edmund Gwynn

      Mr Edmund Gwynn Hordern





    Test pilot for Heston Aircraft Company.

    In 1937 he formed Hordern-Richmond Aircraft Ltd at Denham, which made propellors; now part of Permali Gloucester Limited.

    d. 1993


  • Ince, Richard

      Mr Richard Ince

      1929, aged 27


    'A Member of the London Stock Exchange'

    Killed in WWII: 10th August 1941, when Acting Lieutenant, HMS Daedalus RNVR; buried West Norwood Cemetery


  • Irving, John Duckworth

      Mr John Duckworth Irving

      1926, aged 38



    Born in Xlanga, S Africa but living in Northumberland; 'a shopkeeper'


  • Jackaman, Alfred Charles Morris

      Mr Alfred Charles Morris Jackaman

      1927, aged 23



    A civil engineer from Slough; in 1936 he and Marcel Desoutter decided that an airport at Gatwick might be a nice idea (it was, after all, "outside the London fog area").

    He later married Australian-born Muriel Nora 'Cherry' Davies and they ended up near Sydney; he died in 1980, but she survived until 2011 - aged 101. see


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