First flight of the Spitfire

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This is going to sound strange but I always thought the first flight of K5054 was 5th March and this is confirmed by Jeffrey Quill in his book “Birth of a Legend”, but in his other book “Spitfire a test pilots story” he categorically states that he flew Mutt Summers down to Eastleigh in Miles Falcon G-ADTD on March 6th for him to carry out the first flight. Which is the correct date 5th or 6th?

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Thought this would have elicited a few responses by now. Is this no longer a Spitfire type forum anymore ?😃

The Spitfire is not amongst my areas of interest, but from a research perspective you are likely to find the answer in TNA item AVIA 46/119. 

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Wasn't the first edition of that book published before definitive proof of the first flight came to light?

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I honestly don’t know, think the book was 1983, when was the definitive proof done and what did they conclude?

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It used to be March 6th.

Some twenty years ago a Supermarine or Rolls - Royce document emerged with Solent Sky Museum in Southampton that confirms beyond any reasonable doubt that the date was actually March 5th 1936.  To the best of my knowledge the document is still held at that museum.

Maybe a word with their archivist would confirm the foregoing for you beyond any doubt? When they are open again, naturally.

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In SPITFIRE - The History by Morgan/Shacklady, on page 27 it states:

On the morning of 5 March 1936 "Mutt" Summers climbed into the cockpit of the unpainted aircraft at Eastleigh aerodrome for the maiden flight.

‘THE’ history. Wow. 

Does the author provide the reader with a reference document for the date? Any authoritative history will do. 

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Thanks fellows, especially R6915, for that gen. Christer I had seen that in “Spitfire the History”, but because Jeffrey Quill had referred to his log book that it was 6th, that was what threw me. Thanks again all.

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‘THE’ history. Wow. 

Does the author provide the reader with a reference document for the date? Any authoritative history will do.

Well, not my wording, just the title of the book!

The reason I ask is that you come through a bit condescending but have you read the book or even seen it?

There's no reference to a specific document, only mention of an interview with Jeffrey Quill on the subject of the first flight. If 5 March was in error, JQ would have pointed it out, right?

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If 5 March was in error, JQ would have pointed it out, right?

I also have The Spitfire Story by Alfred Price. He too has made an interview with JQ and he discusses the date of the first flight. The final statement by AP was that "the surprisingly meagre evidence would seem to point to K5054 having made her maiden flight on the 6th, rather than 5th March 1936 as has so often been said in the past".

The jury seems to be out for a long stay?

When undertaking historical research it paramount to determine the independence and reliability of any facts by giving the source of information. Such source needs to be primary, if not, then secondary and qualified. 

Why? Well it avoids confusion like that generated by the genuine question of the OP of this thread. 

If you are content with derivative and poorly researched books, fine. But they will not be ‘THE’ history of any subject.

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I don't know if your post is deliberately supposed to be offensive but in my opinion, it is, extremely so.

 

You've already been informed that the book is called "The History..." and you seem to to think it's perfectly acceptable to accuse a book you've obviously never seen or even heard of, of being derivative and poorly researched.

I had been considering looking through some of my books to see if I could find when or where the definitive date was decided but - forget it.

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I remember seeing a document published in a magazine or book with small written text: flew on 5th of March or something in that fashion. Before that it was always 6th of March 1936.

‘THE’ somewhat definitive is it not? 

Perhaps stick with Ladybird books or Wikipedia if your offended with factual detail? 

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I don't know what it indicates but all posts (in this thread) by "Anonymous" was "Edited 25th June 2020 at 08:16" and there are no member details.

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Yes that is very strange Christer, I see that Oracal is also down as Anonymous in the Lightning versus Phantom thread too. Anyway that aside , thank you everybody for your input.

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Christer, you make a very fair comment in reporting the first flight was made by Mutt Summers and you quoted from Morgan & Shacklady's massive tome that he got in the aircraft that morning for the first flight. I suggest that you may find that a number of people would like to adjust that statement slightly. 

It is generally accepted now that the first flight happened at approx 16.10 that afternoon. On several occasions when memorial flights of a Spitfire have been arranged over the Southampton area  on March 5th they have tried to use that timing for the take off from Eastleigh.  In 2006, there were five Spitfires including Tr 9 PV202 with John Romain at the helm and his honoured guest Alex Henshaw in the back seat.  That was the occasion and the timing that the fly past formed up near Calshott and flew along Southampton Water followed by the BBC News helicopter.

In mentioning JQ, the family keep his archive and they have said to me that they accept that the entry March 6th, should be March 5th.

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Sopwith, members becoming "Anonymous" may be down to the board being run by gremlins 😱 ?

R6915, good research, the more I learn the more I realize how little I know!

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I suspect, and hope, that as Oracal knows everything and finds it perfectly acceptable to be rude to and about people he doesn't know from Adam, Key thought the board could do without him.

Which edition of "The History" has been consulted? Not that I know what was revised. I sold my first edition to buy the new one and regretted it immediately. In the first few pages there were repeated blocks of text and then (Sir) James Martin of Martin-Baker was referred to as George Martin.

I put the book on the shelf and haven't looked at it since.

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Which edition of "The History" has been consulted?

I guess it is the first edition but I'm not sure. On the first page, it states:

First published in Great Britain 1987.

Some copyright blahblah

Printed in Great Britain by William Clowes Ltd, Beccles, Suffolk

ISBN 0 946219 10 9

It has the dust cover with RM689.