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Wavell Wakefield

Flight Lieutenant William Wavell Wakefield, MA – later Lord Wakefield of Kendal (1898 – 1983)

Wavell Wakefield (known as Wakers) was Captain Edward Wakefield‘s nephew (son of his younger brother Roger) who had commissioned Waterbird. His many achievements included serving in the Royal Naval Air Service/ Royal Air Force (1916-1923), becoming a rugby legend, and being an MP (1935-1963) including Parliamentary Private Secretary to the Under-Secretary of State for Air (1940-1942).

Wakefield made the only landing on the after-deck of HMS Vindictive, in a Sopwith Pup on 1 November 1918 at Scapa Flow. This achievement is referred to in Naval Aviation in the First World War by R D Layman, The RNAS and the Birth of the Aircraft Carrier 1914-1918 by I M Burns and The Royal Navy’s Air Service in the Great War by D Hobbs.

On 3 June 1919, he was mentioned in the London Gazette in a Report for gallant and distinguished services under Coast Patrol, signed by Winston Churchill.

eHe resigned his permanent commission in the RAF on 3 October 1923, having made his last flight from Farnborough on 9 August.

On 7 February 1943, when he was Director of the Air Training Corps, a Water Glider was flown from White Cross Bay, Windermere by Wakefield and also 4 days earlier by Flight Lieutenant Cooper Pattinson, DFC.

Further details of his exploits are here at Article number 6.

 – Aged 5, the family moved to Cark-in-Cartmel where his father was the local GP and he had a happy childhood.


Wings Over Windermere

Edward Wakefield described flight from water as ‘Something that beckoned …’