Centenary of the real air force

Wordsmith

LE
Book Reviewer
#4
But not the first attempts to fly by the British military - that dates back to 1863.

History of military ballooning - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Between 1862–71 efforts by two Royal Engineers officers, were made to catch the attention of senior British officers to the potential use of balloons. In July 1863 experimental balloon ascents for reconnaissance purposes were conducted by the Royal Engineers on behalf of the British Army, but although the experiments were successful it was considered not worth pursuing further because it was too expensive. However, by 1878 a Balloon Equipment Store was established at Woolwich by the Royal Engineers. By this time the limitations imposed by the need to produce hydrogen in the field by some portable apparatus and finding a suitable material for the envelope of a war balloon had been resolved.

In 1888 a School of Ballooning was established at Chatham, Medway, Kent. It moved to Stanhope Lines, Aldershot in 1890 when a balloon section and depot were formed as permanent units of the Royal Engineers establishment.

Balloons were first deployed by the British Army during the expeditions to Bechuanaland and Suakin in 1885. They were also deployed during the Second Boer War (1899–1902), where they were used in artillery observation with the Kimberley column and during the Siege of Ladysmith.
So maybe we should have celebrated the centenary 50 years ago...

Wordsmith
 
#5
RFC was divided into two Wings, Naval and Military. RN started called the Naval Wing the RNAS, shortly before the outbreak of WW1 the RN declared RNAS was part of the RN, a constitutionally very dodgy act by the 1st Lord of the Admiralty, one WS Churchhill. However, it does mean that all naval airmen are true bastards because they were born illegitimately.
 
#8
Which is so called as it was formed as the Fleet Air Arm of the RAF in 1924 and then transferred to the Admiralty in 1939. I have wondered why they did not revert to being the RNAS at that point.
 
#11
My uncle who was a major in the war, and like all pongos was known to drip a bit about the RAF, told me that the RAF march past was a bit of music "pinched" from the Royal Engineers. Is there no end to the crimes of the crabs? :police:
 
#12
Does that mean the Navy wasn't/isn't an arm of the military then? Just wondering, like..
In British English, "military" is an adjective for things relating to land warfare, eg the RAF Regiment could be described as the military branch of the air force. This is why the army has Royal Military Police and Military Secretariat.

Using it as a noun to describe the armed forces is an Americanism: one that, unfortunately, has become so prevalent over here that I've even heard the PM use it.
 
#16
The Snows are covering this subject on Radio 4:

BBC - Media Centre - Programme Information - 100 years of the Royal Flying Corps

100 years!

After I had announced to my Family, at the age of 15 that I was intending to join the Junior Leaders, various family members who had served persuaded me to wait until I'd done my A Levels - this included my Grandfather who at a very tender age had managed to join the Royal Flying Corps in 1915 -

I'll never forget him describing some of the things he had seen and done - culminating in the terrible fiery death of his navigator when their damaged aircraft crashed on taking off. We were interrupted by my Grandmother who told gave a him a huge earful about 'unsuitable stories for kids'. I learnt from my Uncle years later that he had never discussed his war time experiences -before or since and so we concluded that he wanted to give me an idea of how bad conflict can be.

I still have a copy of 'Winged Victory' by VM Yeates that my Grandfather me, without doubt one of the best accounts of aerial combat in the First World War...
 
#17
My uncle who was a major in the war, and like all pongos was known to drip a bit about the RAF, told me that the RAF march past was a bit of music "pinched" from the Royal Engineers. Is there no end to the crimes of the crabs? :police:
kilo42, it must be hell for you always on the defensive, why don't you take a break from righting all the wrong doing against the RAF for a few days? it will be a pleasant change for you....




http://www.armyflying.com/pdf/RFC Advert.pdf

There is an event at Middle Wallop 12 May 12 to celebrate the anniversary.

The Museum of Army Flying: Home
 
#19
My uncle who was a major in the war, and like all pongos was known to drip a bit about the RAF, told me that the RAF march past was a bit of music "pinched" from the Royal Engineers. Is there no end to the crimes of the crabs? :police:
thats a damm line when have sappers ever marched anywhere when a resentful shamble was an option
;0?
 

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