Thursday, January 22, 2009

Hounslow Heath Airport

A comment on my recent posting on Croydon Airport rightly says that the first civil airport in Britain was Hounslow Heath.

I had heard of it but had assumed that it was another name for Heathrow. Not so, as Hidden London explains:
In 1919 Hounslow Heath became the site of the first civil airport in the country. The earliest commercial flight was from Bristol to Hounslow and the inaugural scheduled air service was from Hounslow to Paris. On 12 November the first flight to Australia left Hounslow, arriving 28 days later. Commercial aviation moved to Croydon in 1920 and the airport closed. Its buildings were destroyed by fire in 1929 but a plaque in Staines Road marks the site.


Anonymous said...

That's typical London claiming all the credit. What do they mean by the first Civil Airport? First council owned? The innaugural scheduled service was from.....Bristol. Doesn't that suggest a pre-existing airport in Bristol?

Jonathan Calder said...

But where did the flights take off and land in Bristol? This page dates the city's first airport to 1930.