Author(s): Philip MacDougall
During the First World War, the Royal Navy was at the forefront of aviation developments, concerned not just with the use of aircraft and airships to defend the fleet, but securing the homeland against Zeppelins and air strikes. Several airfields, seaplane and airship stations became crucial to the success of these experiments with Calshot, Eastchurch, Felixstowe and the Isle of Grain developing new aircraft and weapons as well as pioneering navigational systems, air-to-ground radio communication and deck-board ship landings while at Cardington, Kingsnorth and Pulhan, concentration was on the development of airships.
These stations saw the assembly of groups of experts who, in pushing the envelope to the extreme, sometimes sacrificed their own lives. That little is known about this highly advanced aerial experimental work is a result of the Navy’s air wing – the RNAS – having been subsumed into the RAF and the resulting emphasis on the aeroplane as a weapon of land warfare rather than its value for fighting the war at sea.
|234 x 156 mm
|15 May 2017
|30 black-and-white photographs