Travelling by Air

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James Sadler Aeroplane Teapot

James Sadler Aeroplane Teapot

Two views of James Sadler's quirky teapots from the 1930s - image sourced from : centurymodernism with thanks

Cartier earrings

I couldn't really resist these - 1930s Cartier from the Neil Lane Collection - they should have given every female passenger a pair!

Hybrid of Air and rail travel

We start this collection with a hybrid of two ways to travel - by air and by rail which most people do automatically these days unless they can grab a taxi - but there doesn't seem to be much available about this 'Continental Gateway' and the name was certainly borrowed by a monorail venture later on. - Image sourced from Pinterest

Air France poster from the period

Air France designed by Albert Solon

One of many posters designed for Air France in the thirties by the popular Albert Solon (1897 - 1973) - image sourced from artnet

British Continental Airways

Is it a bird? Is it a plane? ... The start of Superman - but here we find ourselves directionally 'as the crow flies' but when it comes to speed I think British Continental Airways would move a little faster - lovely use of an individual imagination and I do love the 'school dinner' colours - image sourced amongst many at Pinterest

A Hungarian advertisement for medication showing the three main forms of travel

A Hungarian curiosity (no provenance other than Pinterest) - 'Trains and Boats and Planes' - no the clue is in the syringe mid-way on the left - this is an advert for 'Daedalon tablets' (still in existence today) although the airbound vessel is straight out of the film 'Things to Come'

Traditional Imperial Airways Poster 1932

Modernist style Iperial Airways Poster 1932

Two extreme art styles for Imperial Airways 'The British Air Line' both created in 1932 - Traditional top image sourced from London Air Travel and the Modernist interpretation sourced from Abe Books

Truly appalling Intourist poster commissioned by Stalin - image courtesy of Christies Auctioneers via the Daily Mail

Gronowski Air Travel Poster 1934

International Tourism Challenge Hot Air Balloon versus Bi-Plane? - poster by Tadeusz Lucjan Gronowski (1894 - 1990) the 'father' of Polish Graphic Design - image courtesy and sourced from - auctioneers

Max Ponty designed travel poster for Air France

Here's a fabulous 1949 (but with all the trappings of the Art Deco style) poster by Max Ponty (signed bottom right) extolling the virtues of sending your parcels via Air France. I just adore the 'sea horses' pulling the chariot - seriously iconic!

Hughes Space Travel

I know this one isn't strictly speaking 'air' travel but it's close enough for me!

Air Clipper advertisemnt to Hawaii

1937 - Boeing

Projected Boeing 326 in 1937

It's a fabulous picture and could have come straight out of 'Things to Come' released in 1936 and maybe an inspiration behind this design which never came to fruition. Image sourced from Boeing via Fb with the following information : "The Boeing Model 326 pressurized double-deck flying boat was designed in response to a 1937 Pan American Airways proposal for a flying ocean liner capable of a non-stop crossing over the Atlantic Ocean. This idea never reached production."

July, 1937 - Paris International Exhibition

Advert to fly across the channel to the Paris Exposition

From 'The Sphere' dated 17th July 1937 an invitation to fly across the channel in 55 minutes landing at Deauville and possibly travelling on to Paris to visit the great Exposition

13th June, 1936 - Shoreham Airport, West Sussex

Pre-opening image of Shoreham Airport

An early image of the terminal prior to its opening in the Streamline Moderne re-design of 1936

Official opening day at Shoreham Airport in 1936

Official opening day in 1936 with visitors enjoying hospitality at the front of the terminal (inset shows the interior of the terminal building)

Shoreham Airport spectators

Tea over and the spectators are invited to view from the balcony as well as ground levels on opening day

Shoreham Airport and bi-planes

The Gypsy Moths parade for the spectators

Shoreham Airport and bi-planes

More Gypsy Moths strutting their stuff

Geberal view of the entramce to the terminal from the rear

Publicity image for Shoreham Airport

detail of the aerial shot

General aeriel shot of the airport and airfield in the 1930s

A remarkable array of : pre-opening, Official opening, Gypsy Moth, aerial views and miscellaneous images courtesy & © of the UK Airfield visit the website to see and read more.

HISTORY: The Shoreham Airport Terminal was built by James Bodie Ltd between 1934 and 1935 and was designed by the architect R. Stavers Hessell Tiltman (1888-1968). Stavers Tiltman had offices in Brighton and was architect to Southern Aircraft Ltd. Tiltman was a successful airport designer in the 1930s, responsible for several major commercial airport designs in Britain; notably Belfast-Harbour Airport (1939) and the Leeds-Bradford Joint Municipal Airport at Yeadon (1939), although the original terminal buildings of the latter have now gone. He also had a design proposed for the Tudor House public house in Shoreham in the RIBA Library Drawings Collection, but the public house does not appear to have been built. The terminal building was built using cubic and curvilinear forms in the streamlined Moderne style that flourished in this period, and was acclaimed by his contemporaries when the South Eastern Society of Architects held their annual meeting at the airport in July 1936. The terminal building came into operation in 1936.

Shoreham was one of the centres of early British aviation (prominent other centres being Hendon and Brooklands), beginning about 1910, and is the only one which is still active as an aviation centre. It became properly established as an aerodrome in 1911 as Brighton (Shoreham) Aerodrome, and was a major venue for flying events such as the Circuit of Europe and the Round Britain races. During the First World War it was a Royal Flying Corps training base; after the war it was used by a flying club. In 1928 the aviation entrepreneur, Sir Alan Cobham became involved in promoting Shoreham as an airport, and the three local civic authorities of Brighton, Hove and Worthing took up this idea. During the 1920s and 1930s international civil aviation was seen as promising major economic and prestigious advantages by forward thinking civic authorities. In 1930 Cobham (who was also involved in the design of Liverpool Speke airport) was engaged by the local authorities to survey possible sites for airfields in the area, and he selected the original airfield at Shoreham for the new municipal airport. The local authorities bought the airfield, work commencing on the terminal building in 1934. The airport terminal building was built at a cost of £55,000, was completed by 1935 and officially opened in 1936. At that time the buildings on site were a main hangar, workshops and six private lock-up hangars. With the completion of the terminal building scheduled flying services were increased. Channel Air Ferries and Jersey Airways flew to destinations such as Bristol, Cardiff, Liverpool and Manchester, Jersey, Le Touquet and Deauville. Shoreham was visited by many aviation celebrities including Amy Johnson and Charles Lindbergh, who helped to maintain its prominence as a renowned centre of aviation.

In 1937 the Air Ministry decided that Shoreham should be used to train RAF Volunteer Reserves. At the outbreak of World War II much international air traffic was re-routed to Shoreham from Croydon, but by May 1940 these civil aviation duties were taken away and it was used by 225 Squadron for anti-invasion patrols. During the Battle of Britain Shoreham became an emergency landing ground for damaged aircraft, and for a short time was home to the Fighter Interception Unit from Tangmere and to 422 Special Hurricane flight - later to become 96 Fighter Squadron. Later in 1941 it housed 277 Air Sea Rescue Squadron, and Operation Jubilee (the raid on Dieppe, 1942) was planned in Shoreham's terminal building. In the preparation for the Normandy landings in 1944 the airfield was host to a newly formed French Fighter squadron

In the 1950s and 1960s the airfield was used for making aviation components, latterly by Beagle Aircraft Ltd., which entered races and won the Schneider Trophy in 1986 and King's Cup Races of 1989 and 1994. In 1970 Beagle Aircraft went out of production and the airfield was handed back to the Council in 1971 to become an airport once again. A revived schedule of passenger services was continued until the late 1980s. The terminal building is substantially intact, but a few changes have been made over the years, notably to the control tower. The profile of the control tower was altered by a small extension to the south of the original control room. Also the original observation room (a small glass-enclosed structure on the top of the control tower) was replaced in 1986-87 by an all-glass observation room, following storm damage. There was also a programme of refurbishment in the early 1990s.

Due to its distinctive period style the terminal building has been used in a number of television and film dramas, including several 'Poirot' episodes, a film version of 'Oh What a Lovely War' and in 2005 was transformed into Paris Le Bourget airport in a scene in 'The Da Vinci Code'.**

REASONS FOR DESIGNATION: The airport terminal building at Shoreham is designated at Grade II* for the following principal reasons: * The terminal building is an unusual survival from the early days of civil aviation transport and its landscape setting with adjacent original airfield and hangar make it particularly rare and of more than special interest. * Despite some later changes the original plan of the airport, both internal and external, is intact. This type of survival is very rare for a working airport, and here it results in a characterful design that is really quite special. * The design of the exterior and interior make it a Moderne style example of a 1930s airport terminal building. Source : Historic England

Full biography of the airport can be found on

Empire Airways Flight featured in Poirot

"Douglas DC-3 G-AMRA Empire Airways RAF Fairford - This was the DC-3 used in a Poirot TV episode 'Death in the Clouds'. Douglas DC-3 G-AMRA is seen with Empire Airways titles at RAF Fairford on July 20th 1991."- image sourced from : Flickr

Action frame in front of Emoire Airways aeroplane used in Poirot

'Death in the Clouds' - action frame from the Poirot Television series - image sourced from IMDB

** And most recently seen in the film 'The Woman in Gold' starring Helen Mirren in 2015 - visit Daily Mail article

Shoreham Airport entrance prepared for 'Wiman in Gold' filming

Two flags with swastikas were erected outside a West Sussex airport today during filming of Woman in Gold - just 24 hours before the 70th anniversary of the D-Day landing in Normandy, France

Shoreham Airport disguised as Nazi Airport in 'Woman in Gold'

Later on in the day, an aeroplane was seen parked outside the airport. Neither of the film's big stars Helen Mirren and Ryan Reynolds were scene on location today

Shoreham Airport disguised hosting actors and crew  in 'Woman in Gold'

Actors and crew could be seen at Shoreham Airport while two banners featuring the Nazi emblem were hung from the outside of the building - images sourced as used in the Daily Mail

Recent view of Shoreham Entrance

"Shoreham Airport is an Art Deco terminal building, a part of a working airport. Recently used as London Airport in the series The Crown. The inside is fully decorated in the Art Deco style" - image and narrative sourced from and courtesy & © of John Westwood

Entrance to Shoreham

Beautifully preserved and highlighting the features of the entrance to Shoreham Airport - image courtesy & © sourced from

Modern representation of Shoreham facade

Great piece of artwork - courtesy & © of and sourced from visit to see more examples (this one's my favourite)


Of the few images that are available it appears that the interior of Shoreham Airport resembles the general layout, decor and decorations (right down to the cute little rotund spitfire shaped lamps) of the beautifully preserved Aviator Hotel. For Shoreham images visit Daniel Wright's Flickr account and

Stairwell at Shoreham

Stairwell at Shoreham with a view looking out onto the airfield - reminiscent of the Hoover Factory overlooking Tesco car park! - With thanks to Chris Ashurst whose images appear on Flickr and are handily dated placing the time as June 2014

Interior architecture of Shoreham Airport

From the RIBA Archives beautiful image of the Departure/Arrival area and useful provenance information

Shoreham Terminal interior foyer area

An excellent panoramic view of the interior foyer (shame about the 1960s chandelier lights) which highlights the similarities to the Aviator Clubhouse - image sourced from and © of Chris Ashurst Flickr account with thanks'

For more images visit Trip Advisor

Oldest Airport ever?

The Telegraph has it listed at no. 3!

Shoreham Airport narrative

Oldest airport - Shoreham Airport clock tower

Shoreham Museum clutter

Shoreham Airport Museum cluttered with the usual well-beloved memorabilia of the time as found on TripAdvisor

Shoreham Museum Tea Room

Whether the Tea Room looked like this at the time or has been cleverly designed it is a treat for the eyes and almost 'Hobbit'-like - many thanks to dgeezer at flickr for sharing this

5th March, 1936 - Spitfire Maiden Flight

The Spitfire - the iconic fighter plane of the Battle of Britain - takes to the skies

1936 inaugural flight of the Spitfire

A Spitfire Mk1 fighter made by Messrs. Vickers, on show to the public for the first time over Eastleigh Aerodrome, Southampton - image courtesy of

The high-speed fighter plane that was to capture the public's imagination - and put fear into the hearts of German pilots - made its maiden flight at a Hampshire airfield.

'The Supermarine Spitfire - the British fighter aircraft that became the iconic plane of the Battle of Britain - made its first flight on this day in 1936. On the night of March 5, Captain Joseph 'Mutt' Summers - chief test pilot at Supermarine's parent company Vickers-Armstrongs - took off in the Type 300 K5054 prototype from Eastleigh airfield in Hampshire. At the end of the eight-minute flight, Summers climbed out of the cockpit and said to the small group of observers "I don't want anything touched", indicating that nothing required correcting before his next test flight.'

1933 - Boeing 247 - First Modern Commercial Aircraft

From the Daily Mail 'On this Day (Day 247 of 2015)' - 4th September, 2015 - " In 1933, the Boeing 247 - considered the first modern commercial aircraft - went into service. It took 20 hours, with seven stops, to fly from New York to Los Angeles. That flight takes just six hours today."

Boeing 247 1933

The Boeing Model 247 is considered the first modern airliner. It was an all metal, twin-engine, retractable gear, streamlined airliner that could hold ten passengers in air conditioned comfort.

Source : The Aviation History On-Line Museum - The year 1933 was extremely important in the history of air transport, for it was then that the two original ancestors of the modern airliner appeared. One was the Boeing Model 247 which made its inaugural flight on February 8, 1933, and the other was the Douglas DC-1, which flew later in the year in July.

Boeing 247 flying over Chicago

Flying over Chicago

Boarding the Boeing 247


Disembarking Boeing 247


1931 - London to build Mid-City Airport

1931 Futures look at amid-city airport

Image sourced from with thanks for this fabulous innovative idea from 1931

London to Build Mid-City Air Port

With the rapid growth of airplane transportation, the air port of the future may be moved up into the centre of the city where it will be easily accessible. A bold step in this direction has been taken by Charles Clever, a London architect, who has constructed a model for a proposed airport to be located in the heart of London. The landing field consists of four runways arranged in the form of a giant wheel, the entire structure being supported by the buildings over which it is erected, as illustrated.

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