Author Topic: RNAS Bleriot monoplane (Nº 39) - July 1913 - Ashburnham, East Sussex  (Read 351 times)

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Offline Craggs

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Back in the early days of Naval Aviation...............

Hastings and St Leonards Observer - Saturday 05 July 1913




Considerable excitement was created in Ashburnham and district on Monday evening when an aeroplane descended in one of the fields on the estate of the Earl of Ashburnham.

About 7.30pm an aeroplane was noticed flying at a considerable height and coming from the direction of Lewes.  The engine was heard to stop and the aviator made a beautiful volplane down to a field on the estate that had recently been cut for hay.  The machine ran along the ground for about 100 yards and went into a wire fence that protected a steep ditch.  A very large number of people came from all parts to see the mechanical bird.

On Tuesday morning from an early hour many people were present in the hope that the aeroplane would be pulled out of the ditch and the interrupted flight continued.  At about twelve o'clock three mechanics arrived from Eastchurch in  a motor car with a large lorry attached, and the machine, having been hauled from its awkward position, was dismantled and placed on the lorry, and taken to Eastchurch.

It appears that the flying machine was a two seater Bleriot monoplane, No 39, attached to the Naval Depot at Eastchurch, driven by an 80 horse-power Gnome engine, and had been piloted by Engineer-Lieutenant T. Briggs of the Royal Naval Aviation School, Eastchurch, Isle of Sheppey, from Eastchurch to the aerodrome at Shoreham-by-sea.  He was on his return journey when, over Ashburnham, something went wrong with the engine, and he was compelled to descend.  He alighted safely in the field, but owing to the impact with the wire fence and the ditch, one of the woods struts of the chassis was broken and the end of the huge propellor was slightly damaged.  Lieutenant Briggs, who was not carrying a passenger at the time, was not injured, as the aeroplane had almost stopped when it came into contact with he fence.

Offline pomme homme

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Re: RNAS Bleriot monoplane - July 1913 - Ashburnham, East Sussex
« Reply #1 on: June 21, 2020, 10:33:22 am »
It was a Blériot XI powered by a 80hp Le Rhône engine. Evidently the damage it suffered was not severe in that it is recorded as going to France in 1914.