The aircraft of No.s 2 and 3 Squadrons, and the Aircraft Park departed Dover in squadron order at 5 minute intervals commencing at 06:25 on the 13th August. No.4 Squadron and the Wireless Flight were delayed by fog at Eastchurch and commenced departing directly for Amiens via Boulogne at 10:00 on the 13th. No.5 Squadron left Dover on the 15th.
Each pilot had been instructed to climb to at least 3,000 feet in order to have a good chance of reaching shore in the event of engine failure over the Channel. In the event some climbed as high 8,000 feet. Each crew member had been issued with an inner tube to provide flotation in the event of ditching as life jackets had not been provided in time. The Navy positioned vessels across the Channel to rescue any downed machines.
Most aircraft took a mechanic as passenger to provide assistance in the event of mechanic problems. However some pilots were assigned another officer as passenger, an unpopular decision with some pilots.
Maj HM Trenchard (Acting OC )
Maj H Musgrave (DAD War Office)
Capt HC Jackson (GSO)
Capt R Pigot (Act Adj)
Maj CAH Longcroft (Squadron Commander - No.2 Squadron)
Capt WGH Salmond
TLt M Baring
The above sailed from Newhaven to Boulogne on the SS Canterbury
Col Sir D Henderson
Maj FH Sykes
Lt BH Barrington-Kennett (Adjt) (not to be confused with VA Barrington-Kennett who remained behind with No.4 Squadron)
Maj HRM Brooke-Popham (QMG)
2Lt OGWG Lywood (HQ W/T Officer)
2Lt DS Jillings (No.6 Squadron) is shown as embarking on the 12th. He was possibly a member of the overseas landing party.
Capt EW Furse joined the HQ party on the 19th August (ex No.5 Squadron)
No.2 Squadron were the first to leave Dover commencing at 06:25 on the morning of the 13th August 1914.
Squadron Commander Maj CJ Burke departed first, followed by 'A' Flight in order of seniority within the Flight, with a gap of about 5 minutes between each aircraft taking off.
The first to land in France at 08:20 was Lt Harvey-Kelly, followed by Maj Burke (who ferried one of the Aircraft Park machines).
Lt CB Spence (OiC Transport)
Lt WHC Mansfield
Lt DSK Crosbie
2Lt GJ Malcolm
Capt AB Burdett (OiC Glasgow)
Lt CAGHL Farie
Lt TLS Holbrow
The above, together with the ground crew embarked on the SS Dogra on the 8th August at Glasgow Docks and arrived at Boulogne on the 15th.
|327||BE2a||Capt FF Waldron/518 2AM GW Skerritt||Flight Commander. (Skerrett in some sources)|
|368||BE2a||Lt C Gordon Bell/536 1AM H Ware||Gordon Bell was an Aircraft Park pilot|
|239||BE2a||Lt MW Noel/*-||*Possibly 403 1AM AE Hobson as passenger|
|471||BE2a||Lt HD Harvey-Kelly/*557 2AM F Harris|
*The War Diary indicates 2AM Harris flew to Dover on the 7th as passenger to Lt Noel and 1AM Hobson went with Harvey-Kelly. However the log book of BE2a 239 clearly shows Hobson went with Noel on the 7th. The diary of Maj Burke indicates Harris crossed the Channel as passenger to Harvey-Kelly. No passenger is shown for Noel. The official record for Hobson indicates he embarked for France on the 13th, suggesting he went by air.
368 had been flown to Dover by Lt ACE Marsh with 746 1AM Spallen. Marsh subsequently reported sick with a bad foot, and joined the EF in October with No.6 Squadron.
Lt Gordon Bell had previously ferried 396 to Dover, but the aircraft became unserviceable, and consequently he took over 368.
Commenced departing at 06:45
|233||BE2a||Capt GE Todd/313 Cpl WC Attrill||Flight Commander. Left at 06:45|
|468||BE2a||Capt UJD Bourke/95 1AM F Shelton|
|385||BE2a||Lt RB Martyn/332 1AM WH Roberts|
|232||BE2a||Lt ERL Corballis/448 1AM T Bennett|
|383||BE2a||Capt GWP Dawes/514 2AM H Parker||Flight Commander|
|372||BE2a||Lt L Dawes/-|
|236||BE2a||Lt RM Rodwell/284 2AM AV Smith||Departed at 07:30|
|384||BE2a||Lt WR Freeman/-|
|228||BE2a||Maj CJ Burke/-||Squadron Commander|
|234||BE2a||Capt A Ross-Hume/-||Capt GWP Dawes ferried the machine to Dover.|
|329**||BE2a||Lt W Lawrence/-|
|466||BE2a||Lt KR Van der Spuy/-|
Lt KR Van der Spuy crashed on landing at Dover - with a Flt Sgt as passenger - but continued to Amiens.
Capt A Ross-Hume returned to UK 26th September, embarked again 7th October with 440 and returned on the 17th.
**There is no further official trace of 329 after arrival at Dover. However it appears in the personal diary of Maj Burke as being the aircraft Lawrence flew to France. It is not on the list of queries raised by the War Office as unaccounted for in France, but its engine (42219WD196) is on hand at the Aircraft Park on 31.12.14, consequently it is assumed the aircraft went to France and was subsequently abandoned or broken up.
No.3 Squadron suffered the loss of Lt Skene and AM Barlow on departure from Netheravon on the 12th August.
The rest of the Squadron arrived at Dover at 8am on the 12th August. Lt Emmett sideslipped and wrecked his aircraft (BE2a 348, being ferried for the Aircraft Park) upon arrival, injuring passenger 289 1AM AV Collett.
Maj JM Salmond (Squadron Commander)
Capt AG Fox (Flight Commander) [unconfirmed]
Lt A Christie
Lt DL Allen
Lt GL Cruikshank
Lt VSE Lindop
Maj LB Boyd-Moss (scheduled as passenger to Herbert in 352)
Lt AM Read
LT WF MacNeece
2Lt A Hartree
Lt AS Barratt (observer-possibly flew as passenger) [unconfirmed]
The ground crew sailed on the RMSP Dee from Southampton to Boulogne (the RMSP 'Nageria' is also mentioned in the War Diary - probably Nigeria).
|606||Bleriot||Capt LEO Charlton/Capt LP Evans||Flight Commander|
|388||Bleriot||Lt VHN Wadham/349 Cpl FC Whenman(?)|
* Lt WCK Birch (with 582 1AM OTV Bowyer) and 2Lt EW Copeland Perry were the other pilots
|352||H Farman||Capt PLW Herbert/126 Cpl J Waeland||Flight Commander|
|351||H Farman||Lt AR Shekleton/243 1AM N Carlyle|
|274||H Farman||Lt EN Fuller/422 1AM C Littlejohn||New engine at Dover. Left on 16th|
|295||H Farman||Lt WR Read/unknown||Was supposed to take Carlyle as passenger.|
|616||Bl Parasol||Lt EL Conran||Acting Flight Commander|
|389||Bleriot||Lt PB Joubert de la Ferte/386 1AM HJ Gardiner|
|296||Bleriot||Lt GF Pretyman/102 Sgt AC Robins||Wrecked on landing Amiens.|
|260||Bleriot||2Lt RR Skene/331 1AM RK Barlow||Crashed on takeoff Netheravon 12th. Both killed|
The Squadron rolled their machines out of the hangars at 6am ready to start, but fog at Eastchurch prevented their departure until 10:00. 'B' Flight left first. The Squadron flew overhead Dover and crossed the Channel to Boulogne, landing to refuel before flying on to Amiens. Capt Shephard was sent first to head south from Gris Nez and find a landing ground.
Capt HRP Reynolds (Squadron Commander 'C' Flight) (no date recorded) [unconfirmed]
Lt AFA Hooper (observer -possibly went by air) [unconfirmed]
Lt RGD Small (OiC Transport)
Lt RP Mills
2Lt AL Russell
Lt EF Chinnery
2Lt GN Humphreys
Lt RJF Barton
Capt CF Murphy
Lt BH Turner
Capt GP Wallace
2Lt VA Barrington-Kennett
Capt HC MacDonnell
Lt TG Hetherington (RNAS)
The Maurice Farman aircraft of 'C' Flight were not considered 'war' machines and deemed unfit to cross the Channel. The Flight, augmented by 2 aircraft from the CFS, were left behind and carried out coast patrols between Dungeness and North Foreland during August.
|321||BE2a||Capt AHL Soames/257 Sgt HHJ Vaisey||Flight Commander|
|318||BE2a||Lt WGS Mitchell/436 Cpl AH Simpson|
|242||BE2a||Lt GW Mapplebeck/Capt de la G Pitcher||Left at 10:30. f/l Etaples due fuel pump|
|314||BE2a||Lt PHL Playfair/466 1AM AB Hemmings|
|237||BE2a||Lt CG Hosking/655 1AM STC Roberts|
|248||BE2a||Lt KP Atkinson/856 1AM GW Halstead||Landed Equihien and broke flywheel on t/o|
|320||BE2a||Capt GS Shepherd/Lt IM Bonham-Carter||Flight Commander. First to leave at 10:05. Damaged landing.|
|317||BE2a||Lt TW Mulcahy-Morgan/320 Sgt H James||Smashed u/c landing Equihien.|
|249||BE2a||Lt HJA Roche/53 Cpl HV Jerrard|
|231||BE2a||Lt FJL Cogan/750 1AM S Abram||Flight Commander. Broke skids in landing Equihien.|
|474||BE2a||Capt HL Reilly/728 1AM GS Chapman|
|299||BE2a||Maj GH Raleigh/546 1AM CRS Evans||Squadron Commander. Last to leave|
|240||BE2a||2Lt SCW Smith/AM Hamilton(?)|
|336||BE2a||Lt BT James/982 1AM WH Nixon|
|475||BE2a||Lt DS Lewis/1082 2AM H Jameson||f/l at Caudron factory Rue with broken inlet spring|
The Squadron left Gosport (Fort Grange) on 14th for Dover. Capt Carmichael wrecked his aircraft at Gosport and continued to Dover by train. There he picked up a spare BE8 which he ferried across for the Aircraft Park the following day. 2Lt Wilson broke a valve at Gosport and did not cross the Channel until the 16th. Two of the Henry Farmans were wrecked near Shoreham and struck off. Lt H le M Brock force-landed at Salmer and crossed the Channel on the 18th. The remaining 7 aircraft departed for France on the 15th (although 2Lt Strange is not reported as arriving until the 16th).
Maj JFA Higgins
Capt DG Conner (Flight Commander)
Capt BC Fairfax (obs - possibly by air with C Flt)
Capt HA Boger (obs - shown as embarking 11th)
Lt FG Small
2Lt CC Rabagliati
2Lt LDaC Penn-Gaskell
2Lt DC Ware (replaced Furse)
The ground crew sailed on the SS Chevington from Southampton to Boulogne.
|397||Avro||Capt R Grey/unknown||Flight Commander|
|398||Avro||2Lt CW Wilson/114 1AM JM Hamilton||Broke inlet valve Gosport. Crossed Channel 16th|
|390||Avro||2Lt V Waterfall/359 1AM J Dewbery||f/l Calais after exhaust fittings broke.|
|377||BE8||2Lt AAB Thomson/375 1AM JE Smith|
|393||H Farman||Lt RM Vaughan/unknown||f/l Boulogne and wrecked on takeoff.|
|284||H Farman||Lt RO Abercromby/unknown||Wrecked at Shoreham 14th. Did not cross Channel.|
|364||H Farman||Lt Lord C Wellesley/unknown|
|341||H Farman||2Lt LA Strange/75 2AM FV Wells*||Broke longeron Dover. Left on the 16th|
|350||H Farman||Capt GI Carmichael/unknown||Flight Commander. Broke struts Gosport 14th and SOC.|
|461||H Farman||Lt H le M Brock/AM Harrison||f/l Salmer 14th. Crossed Channel on 18th|
|294||H Farman||Lt HF Glanville/unknown||Wrecked Shoreham 14th. Did not cross Channel.|
|346||H Farman||Lt AE Borton/unknown||Damaged at Dover but continued. Changed engine at Boulogne.|
*2AM Wells was a last minute replacement for 976 2AM J Faldon - it was his first flight.
Lt Vaughan force-landed nr Boulogne and wrecked the aircraft. He was suspected of being a German spy by the French and imprisoned for a week!
Some of the Aircraft Park machines left on the 13th August in the main fleet, with the spare machines for No.5 Squadron leaving on the 15th. Lt Stodart had technical problems at Farnborough and abandoned the aircraft there. He eventually travelled to Dover on the 25th August to ferry BE2a 396 which had also been scheduled to cross the Channel with the original force but had suffered mechanical problems. Lt Bryan damaged his aircraft at Dover and did not cross the Channel until the 16th. Lt Emmett wrecked his machine landing at Dover - 1AM Collett was admitted to hospital and the aircraft SOC. The Henry Farman and BE8 aircraft left with No.5 Squadron on the 15th August
Maj AD Carden (Squadron Commander
Maj Hon CM Moore-Brabazon (Asst to Squadron Commander)
Capt WD Beatty (OiC Stores)
Lt GB Hynes (OiC MT)
Lt RH Verney (OiC Workshops)
Capt E Unwin (OiC Railhead) [unconfirmed]
|220||BE2a||Lt GT Porter/270 FltSgt J Mead||Aircraft Park pilot. Left 13th|
|229||BE2a||Lt AL Bryan/unknown||No.3 Squadron pilot. Damaged Dover - to France on 16th.|
|241||BE2a||Lt DE Stodart/unknown||No.2 Squadron pilot. Technical problems Farnborough - aircraft did not go to France.|
|348||BE2a||Lt EC Emmett/289 1AM AV Collett||No.2 Squadron pilot. Crashed on landing Dover - did not go to France.|
|396||BE2a||2Lt C Gordon Bell/536 1AM Ware||Aircraft Park pilot. Needed maintenance so switched to 368 (no.2 Sqn)- Aircraft to France 27th with Lt DE Stodart|
|460||BE2a||Lt NC Spratt/59 1AM J Longhurst||Aircraft Park pilot. Left 13th (Officially recorded as 22nd)|
|455||H Farman||Lt CGG Bayly/unknown||No.5 Squadron pilot. Left on 15th|
|456||H Farman||Lt C Creed/unknown||No.5 Squadron pilot. Left on 15th|
|462||H Farman||Lt R Cholmondeley(?)||Aircraft Park pilot. Left on 15th|
|391||BE8||Capt GI Carmichael||No.5 Squadron pilot. Left on 15th (aircraft flown to Dover by Capt GH Cox)|
|625||BE8||2Lt R Smith-Barry||No.5 Squadron pilot. Probably left on 15th (Officially recorded as 16th)|
|362||Tabloid||Sent by rail from Farnborough in case.|
|386||Tabloid||Sent by rail from Farnborough in case.|
|387||Tabloid||Sent by rail from Farnborough in case.|
|611||Tabloid||Sent by rail from Farnborough in case.|
A total of 70 aircraft formed the final fleet. Of these, 6 machines were left in the UK due to crashes or technical problems. A further 6 were delayed and left after the main force. 4 were sent in crates.
43 machines departed on the 13th August (28 left from Dover and 15 from Eastchurch) and the remainder (11) on the 15th from Dover.