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First Coventry aircraft flight

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argon
new milton
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1 of 9  Sun 24th Jan 2016 7:55pm  
Member: Joined Jun 2016  Total posts:75

I watched a YouTube video about the Coventry aircraft industry, made by Nuneaton moviemakers that said the first aircraft flight in Coventry was made in a Bleriot 'plane in 1912 from a common in Allesley Old Road. Can anyone tell me where this common was, as when I lived in that area in the 1950s I can't think that there was one there.
First Coventry aircraft flight
dutchman
Spon End
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2 of 9  Sun 24th Jan 2016 8:22pm  
Member: Joined Mar 2010  Total posts:3089

The south side of Allesley Old Road wasn't built on until the early 20th century as you can see from this picture taken from the corner of Hearsall Lane: Edited by member, 24th Jan 2016 8:30 pm
First Coventry aircraft flight
argon
new milton
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3 of 9  Sun 24th Jan 2016 9:08pm  
Member: Joined Jun 2016  Total posts:75

Thank you Dutchman, from your answer I assume that the 'common' could be anywhere on the south side as far as Grayswood Avenue apart from the top shops by the Maudslay
First Coventry aircraft flight
Osmiroid
UK
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4 of 9  Sun 24th Jan 2016 9:41pm  
Member: Joined Aug 2013  Total posts:261

I always wondered if Farman Road near Hearsall Common was named after the aircraft company. I often think about Frank Whittle seeing a plane land on Hearsall when I'm passing that way.
First Coventry aircraft flight
NeilsYard
Coventry
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5 of 9  Sun 24th Jan 2016 9:47pm  
Member: Joined Aug 2010  Total posts:1499

"A very different event took place on 30th August 1913 when an aircraft landed in the town for the first time. An aircraft race had been organised between two pilots, Bentfield Charles Hucks, and Gustav Hamel for a fine silver trophy and prize money of five hundred pounds, offered by the Birmingham Daily Post. The race consisted of several short flights around a circular route, starting and ending at the Tally-Ho grounds at Edgbaston. The first leg was to Redditch recreation ground, followed by a flight to Green's Field near Allesley Road, Coventry, then on to Nuneaton, Drayton Manor, and Walsall." Also interesting read here stating : At 6pm on Saturday, July 27, 1912, Hucks was welcomed by a crowd of around 3,000 at Mr Green’s Farm, Allesley Old Road. He had flown from Leicester, causing a temporary cessation of play as he went over Bedworth Cricket Ground. After being greeted by the Mayor of Coventry, he gave an exhibition flight before going on to Whitley, where thousands more had gathered on the Common. The following Monday, Hucks made a further flight from Coventry and then flew on to Rugby, his arrival there causing just as much interest. The two aviators returned briefly to Coventry in August 1913, when they were involved in an air race, which started and finished at Edgbaston. The 80-mile course was divided into stages, with stops at Redditch, Coventry, Nuneaton, Tamworth and Walsall. The intention had been for the two pilots to fly the same type of plane but this proved impossible and Hamel took his mechanic with him to offset the advantage of his more powerful machine. The Coventry control was again on Mr Green’s field on Allesley Old Road and 4,336 paid admission, with many thousands more outside the official enclosure or viewing from vantage points such as Hearsall Common. As per Dutchman - by that time you were pretty much on the edge of the City Limits by the time you got to Mount Street area and 'in the sticks!' Must have been a serious spectacle! Edited by member, 24th Jan 2016 10:03 pm
First Coventry aircraft flight
Harrier
Coventry
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6 of 9  Mon 25th Jan 2016 9:34am  
Member: Joined Apr 2012  Total posts:143

Green's farmhouse was behind where the Maudslay pub is now at the top of what was to become the Prince of Wales Road. An older Coventry Godiva Harrier who still lives in the area remembers that Green's cows were forever wandering down to Spon End, then all the local kids would help to drive them back. Green's farm included the fields which are now Lake View Park; the farmer allowed Godiva to use them to stage the Warwickshire Country Cross Country Championships on more than one occasion. This was in the early 30s just after the Maudslay was opened, the pub being used as race H.Q.. The pub was also used for Saturday afternoon training runs. I have a photograph of the Godiva Ladies washing themselves in the tin baths at the rear of the pub after they had finished their cross country training, 'getting to use all the hot water before the men got back [from their training run over the country]!' was the comment of one of the lady members who lived in Grayswood Avenue. 'We usually tried to make it as muddy as possible'! There were no showers in those days, tin baths were used for 'tubbing' after the run was over.
First Coventry aircraft flight
argon
new milton
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7 of 9  Mon 25th Jan 2016 4:31pm  
Member: Joined Jun 2016  Total posts:75

Thanks everyone. I used to live in Prince of Wales Road (three doors away from Bill Wright the artist) and so can visualise the area as it must have been in 1912. I remember Mr Green the milkman who lived at the top of Allesley Old Road and assume the farm would have been his or perhaps his father's. What a sight an aeroplane would have been in that location at that time. People must have come from miles around.
First Coventry aircraft flight
NeilsYard
Coventry
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8 of 9  Tue 11th Oct 2016 3:37pm  
Member: Joined Aug 2010  Total posts:1499

Heres a postcard of Hucks on that day in 1912
First Coventry aircraft flight
argon
new milton
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9 of 9  Tue 11th Oct 2016 4:26pm  
Member: Joined Jun 2016  Total posts:75

Well done finding that postcard NeilsYard, it's nice to know that the event was commemorated. It would be nice to see some more information of early flying events in Coventry if anyone knows of any. Smile Thumbs up
First Coventry aircraft flight

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