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Oral Testimony

Julian and Patrick Crossley passengers in Waterhen, 25 August 1913



JOE CROSSLEY witnessed the take-off on the maiden flight by the Saunders-Roe Princess flying boat at close quarters on 22 August 1952, and his father and uncle were passengers in Waterhen [Waterbird’s successor] on 25 August 1913:




ERIC VERDON-ROE, grandson of Sir Alliott Verdon-Roe, OBE, Hon. FRAeS, FIAS. The build of the Avro Curtiss-type, which became known as ‘Waterbird’, was the first time that A. V. Roe had accepted a commission and its heritage went all the way through to the Princess:




JANE PUCKERING, younger daughter of John Lankester Parker, OBE, FRAeS, Hon. MSLAE. Upon coming to Windermere in 1915 he ran out of money and was sleeping in a packing case at Hill of Oaks, but was taken on as an instructor. Later, when he had any time to spare, the family would come to Windermere with a Fleming-WilliamsCar Cruiser caravan:



DAVID BRAILSFORD met Sir Alliott Verdon-Roe, whose firm built Waterbird as a landplane, when Roe presented him with the trophy for Avro Best All Round Apprentice in 1956, Captain Howard Pixton, who witnessed Waterbird being tested as a landplane and was based at Windermere in 1919, and Major Sydney Sippe who made the first flight from British seawater at Barrow-in-Furness in 1912 and took part in bombing missions over Germany in 1914.

Wings Over Windermere

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