Alan RustImperial Airways

Imperial Airways was the early British commercial long-range airline, operating from 1924 to 1939 and serving parts of Europe but principally the British Empire routes to South Africa, India and the Far East, including Malaya and Hong Kong.

Imperial Airways was merged into the British Overseas Airways Corporation (BOAC) in 1939, which in turn merged with the British European Airways (BEA) in 1974 to form British Airways.

After World War 1 Britain had a surplus of warplanes that were used to jumpstart its commercial air industry. In 1924, the government gathered together the few struggling British air companies to form Imperial Airways. They not only shuttled passengers but mail all over the globe. We believe the photo shown below is of a Handley W.10, with a similar model (Handley Page W.8b) shown at the bottom. This model held 12 passengers with an open cockpit for the two pilots.

Shown in the first photo below, the seats are made of wicker and I'm not sure how securely they are anchored to the floor. Also, I found it amusing that they show a "Ripping Panel" at the top of the cabin. It reads "in case of emergency, pull ring sharply". which would open up the canvas roof for escape.

See  for more info.


imperial airways550x738


Handley Page W.8b550x168


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