Wednesday, 27 January 2016

Flight Travel Necessities 1930s Style

On longhaul flights today passengers often get 'amenity kits', usually containing things like an eye mask, toothbrush and paste, socks, a freshening up wipe and blanket. This is not a recent phenomenon. When I was repacking some of our Imperial Airways archives on Mondays, I found the objects on the left all packaged together in what seems to be an 'amenities kit' from the 1930s.

The packet appears to be a flannel still in its wrappings. In addition there is a luggage tag, matches (smoking was only banned on most UK flights in the mid 1990s), a pencil, lavender smelling tubes from 'Boots', and eau de cologne. An insight in to what the passengers below on an Imperial Airways HP-42 (Hengist) would have had when flying? In fact, you can see a few of the passengers smoking, so the matches would have been useful!

Monday, 11 January 2016

Olley Air Services and Geoffrey Keating

Captain Gordon P. Olley seated at his desk
The photograph to the right was taken by Geoffrey Keating, staff photographer for The Daily Sketch, in 1937. The Society's archive include a letter from Keating accompanying the photographs to Captain Gordon P. Olley. They were commissioned to promote Olley's new airline Olley Air Services shortly after it began business. The photographs below give a wonderful view of air travel in the 1930s and, among other things, passengers on a Olley Air Services' plane; a passenger being weighed at check in; Captain J.F.D. Scott reading the weather; a pilot preparing for take off; the Misses Boakes (sisters) cleaning the plane.

Monday, 4 January 2016

Academic Symposium on Croydon Airport in the 1930s

The first academic symposium on Croydon Airport (that we know of anyway) is going to be held on 16 April 2016 at the original Aerodrome Hotel (Croydon Hallmark) next door to the airport. We are very excited about this as it is an opportunity to explore the history of the airport across lots of different areas with expert minds.