Flying high at the London Aerodrome
This souvenir programme is for the aerial derby held at the London Aerodrome in Hendon on Saturday 23 May 1914. The drawing on the front cover shows a scene from a previous year's aerial derby.
London Aerodrome at Hendon
The London Aerodrome was set up in 1911 by the pilot and flying enthusiast Claude Grahame-White. A military flying display was held for the public. The first British airmail service also departed from the site. During the 1920s, the aerodrome was taken over by the Royal Air Force (RAF) and became an important centre for military aviation. Today, it is the site of the RAF Museum.
An annual event
The first of many aerial derbies was held in 1912. The flying race around London started and finished at Hendon. At a time when few people had been in an aeroplane, the spectacular air displays were hugely popular, attracting up to 500,000 spectators. This annual event continued at Hendon until the early 1950s.
Museum number 2003.79/2