His­tory fly­ing by

The Peterborough Evening Telegraph - - Your Telegraph - By Nigel Thorn­ton nigel.thorn­ton@pe­ter­bor­oughto­day.co.uk Twit­ter: @PTnigelthorn­ton 01733 588714

The first aero­plane to fly over Peter­bor­ough was pi­loted by WHE wen (pic­tured above inset) in Oc­to­ber 1911. A year later he was at the con­trols for the first land­ing of an air­craft in Peter­bor­ough.

Thou­sands gath­ered (top left) to greet him in June 1912 as he ar­rived at the old golf links in Wal­ton in his air­craft, a 60 HP Caul­dron (bot- tom left).

Amid the ex­cite­ment he was pre­sented with a rose bowl by the city’s mayor C. E. Craw­ley to mark his achive­ment.

Ewen thrilled the crowds by do­ing some de­mon­stra­tion flights be­fore he headed off for Lin­coln.

But he had barely reached tree height when he hit one and crashed. For­tu­nately, nei­ther he nor his me­chanic was hurt in the ac­ci­dent.

The pic­ture ( top right) shows crowds milling round the crashed plane.

The first recorded fa­tal­ity in a civil­ian air crash in the Peter­bor­ougharea oc­cured eight years later in 1920.

The pic­ture bot­tom right was taken be­fore the plane’s fate­ful flight from op­po­site the Cock Inn in Werrington. The pi­lot and two pas­sen­gers (none of whom are on the pic­ture) died when the wings col­lapsed as the air­craft looped the loop at 2,000 ft.

One of the dead was a Mr Guest, who was the son of the land­lord of the Salmon and Com­pass pub in Peter­bor­ough.

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