Scarborough (Ganton) Aerial View

   Snapshots In Time Index

Scarborough Club's Third Air Display - Monday, August 7 1933

Twelve months ago, the Scarborough Aero Club celebrated its transference to the aerodrome at Ganton by organising a flying display. These last twelve months have been full of vicissitudes for the club, but despite this, much obvious progress has been made. The members are really keen pilots, and a very high number of hours per member is consistently recorded.

It is a great asset to a town like Scarborough to have a really live aero club, as was pointed out by the Mayor (Councillor G. K. Pindar) in the programme, where he ex-pressed the hope that the display might not only prove an attraction to the spectators, but also a means of drawing the attention of the rapidly growing number of private owners, and others interested in civil aviation, to the excel-lent facilities provided by the club at Ganton Aerodrome. It is difficult to understand why every seaside town, which, like Scarborough, is so dependent upon its visitors, does not have an aerodrome with comfortable facilities to attract air visitors. The secretary and all the club members there are always ready to go out of their way to help anyone who visits them, and their example is one to be followed.

Monday, August 7, was Bank Holiday, so they hoped to attract large numbers of the general holiday public to Ganton. Unfortunately, they only got some 2,000 or 3,000, few of whom can have been the type likely to be of ultimate value to the club. There must have been something lacking, either from the programme offered, or from the publicity given in the town, for not only Scarborough, but all the The Western Brothers who amused the crowd not only with their caps but also with a spot of tunny fishing (shooting?), are shown on the left ready for huntin', shootin' and fishin'. surrounding towns were packed that day with " lads and lassies " pleasure bent.

The Mayor And Mayoress Of Hull being greeted by Mr F.P. Morgan Chairman of the Club Committee on their arrival in an N.F.S. Desoutter form the Hull Aero Club.

The Mayor And Mayoress Of Hull being greeted by Mr F.P. Morgan Chairman of the Club Committee on their arrival in an N.F.S. Desoutter form the Hull Aero Club.

An Arrival competition was the first item ; this was won by Fit. Lt. J. B. Allen, pilot to the Duchess of Bedford, who came in the " Puss Moth " in which he flies Her Grace about such a lot. Second was F/O. H. C. D. Hayter, who brought Kathleen Countess of Drogheda up in his Puss Moth." Third was Mr. Garnett, a Yorkshire Aeroplane Club member, who flew a " Moth " from Yeadon.

Besides the Mayor and Mayoress of Scarborough, there were the Lord Mayors and Lady Mayoresses from both York and Hull, who incidentally came by air.
Lady Drogheda opened the meeting, and in doing so drew attention to the fact that Sir George Cayley's house was visible from the aerodrome. She thought that as Sir George was justifiably called the " Father of Aviation," it would be only fitting if some memorial were erected to him. Three club aircraft arrived in formation from the Leicestershire Aero Club, and also from the Newcastle Aero Club. In both cases they brought letters from the Mayors of their respective cities, which were handed over with due ceremony to the Mayor of Scarborough.

A visitor who arrived about this time and caused a great deal of interest was Mrs. Bonney, who, as our readers Kathleen Countess of Drogheda declaring the meeting open.
know. has recently flown from Australia in a " Moth " (Gipsy 1).
A representative fly-past took place, comprising some 19 aircraft of fourteen different types. They were chosen from among the fifty odd visiting aircraft.
Mr. R. A. C. Brie, after flying the " Autogiro " round, landed in front of the main enclosure with the engine stopped.

There were two races during the afternoon. The first, designated " Round the Ridings," was over a course of about 127 miles, covering most of Yorkshire, and the second, called " Round the Houses," being three laps of a 12-mile course so arranged that the aeroplanes were in view for most of the time. They each attracted a number of entries, and our tables give a good idea of how excellent the handicapping of Messrs. Dancy and Rowarth was. The finish of the second race was one of the best we have ever seen, and certainly came nearer to raising a modicum of interest among the general public than most races do.
Mr. H. Bailey brought down one of the Blackburn " B.2 " Trainers from the Reserve Training School at Brough, and put up a very pretty show. His machine
was fitted for inverted flying, an asset of which he made the best possible use.

On the left is Mrs. Bonney, who recently flew from Australia and visited the display in her " Moth." In the centre Maj. J. B. D. Shaw, the President of the Club, is presenting second prize for the long race to Mr. Micklethwaite. On the right is Mr. A. Henshaw, who came in first in both races, but was unfortunately disqualified for cutting a corner in the first. He has recently taught his father (standing behind the machine) to fly, and now the two are seen together at all meetings.

On the left is Mrs. Bonney, who recently flew from Australia and visited the display in her " Moth." In the centre Maj. J. B. D. Shaw, the President of the Club, is presenting second prize for the long race to Mr. Micklethwaite. On the right is Mr. A. Henshaw, who came in first in both races, but was unfortunately disqualified for cutting a corner in the first. He has recently taught his father (standing behind the machine) to fly, and now the two are seen together at all meetings.

Mr. S. A. Thorn is one of our best-known pilots for doing something really spectacular, and is well worth watching. On an Avro " Cadet " he maintained his reputation. The loudspeaker arrangements were by no means adequate for the enclosures, which was a pity, as shows like Thorn's and Bailey's are greatly enhanced and their interest increased when a running commentary is given about them. The general public do not appreciate the finer points of the flying, especially manoeuvres like the " bunt," which Thorn appeared to do easily, unless they are told all about them while they are being performed.

There was an orgy of parachute jumping. Mr. Fairlie (G.Q.) and Messrs. George, de Greeuw, and Marsland (all Russell-Lobes) vied with one another in attempting to land in the aerodrome circle after jumping from about 1,500 ft. The first named was the victor.

Humour was given to the display by the Western Brothers, who ascended with shot guns, ostensibly to shoot down a " tunny fish." The " fish," however, refused to rise into the air and finally rolled over the aircraft park and the hedge beyond, to an adjacent field.

The Western Brothers who amused the crowd not only with their caps

The Western Brothers who amused the crowd not only with their caps
 but also with a spot of "Tunny" fishing.

A Contours d'Elegance was won by Flt. Lt. Allen with the Duchess of Bedford's " Puss Moth." This machine will soon have won a prize for this event at nearly every flying meeting in the country, if it continues at the present rate ; it is really beautifully kept, and Flt. Lt. Allen ought to be congratulated on the condition of the engine in particular. Mr. Henshaw was second with his Comper " Swift." A second class in this competition, provided for machines with a history. The first prize went to Mrs. Bonney, whose " Moth " has carried her from Australia, and the second prize to Mr. Richardson, whose " Blue-bird " had been flown to the Cape during February, 1929, by Wing Corn. (then Sqd. Ldr.) L. H. Slatter.
Other similar events, mostly repetitions, carried, the programme to 9.30 p.m.
It was really very bad luck on the club not getting better support for this meeting, and this seems the right time to review the whole question of the type of display which clubs should organise.

The " tunny fish " meanwhile coming up for a breather behind her.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The " tunny fish " meanwhile coming up for a breather behind her.

Circumstances are not always the same, and therefore the type of publicity and programme which is suitable for a municipal affair near a large city may not be the most suitable for a young and growing club, whose aerodromQ is some distance away from the town, and who wants to attract, not the general public, but potential members. If we are to judge by the comments of those in the club enclosure, and also those in the " bob " enclosure, the display at Ganton fell short of the ideal on many counts, the result being by no means commensurate with the amount of work put in. The club itself was not, in this case, responsible for the programme, but only for the ground organisation. This certainly went smoothly, and all visitors were made most welcome, although it looked as if Mr. Baynes and his fiancee, Mr. Bower and Wing. Corn. Woodhouse could all have done with a little more help than they got.

As regards the programme, we feel that a shorter, snappier one, with something in the air the whole time, no waits and more real flying, would have filled the bill better. It ought not to have been longer than from 3 to 5.30 p.m., so that there 'would have been more time for joy-riding and consequent financial reward. As it was, it was only possible to carry out intermittent joy-riding, and large numbers of people had to be turned away.
It ought to have been possible to arrange that the heats for the second race were run off during the morning, and that there was something doing in the air right up to the moment that those in the finals were ready to start. Races like that are not very exciting and, judging from the remarks we heard in the cheap enclosure, did not interest the general public at all. The final of the short race was good,. and proved again the expertness of our handicappers, but even that appeared only to excite those directly concerned with the competitors.

No, it ought to be realised that a club like Scarborough benefits far more by going out to get only those who are really keen on club flying. It doesn't cost a very great deal to invite all that sort of people, circularising other clubs will do a lot, and the result will be that the gathering is composed of people who-are definitely interested in the club as a club, and for what it can offer them either as members or as air visitors. The flying programme need then also cost but little and be merely an excuse for a garden party. Where the general public are got to the aerodrome by expensive press and other advertising, it is vitally necessary that they are ,given a programme which will make them feel that they have got value for their money. They are not interested in the club itself ; all they want are thrills out of " this 'ere aviation business," and if they don't get them, but have to sit about during long waits, they just go away fed up and bored stiff with flying, a result which does no good to those whose livelihood depends on getting new people into the game ; in fact, it definitely makes things more difficult.