BNPS.co.uk (01202 558833)
Curator of Aircraft Dave Morris.
Worlds first Aircraft Carrier restored.
An amazing tale of bravery and ingenuity from the First World War has been revealed as the worlds first aircraft carrier has been restored at the Fleet air arm museum in Somerset.
Measuring just 58ft long, the precarious craft was invented to counter the threat of Zepplin raids over London and enabled a plucky pilot to launch his Sopwith Camel at the enemy from the North sea before the feared airships could reach Britain.
The tiny carriers were towed out from port behind a battleship with the aircraft strapped to the top of a wooden ramp. The crew and pilot would have to endure the conditions before an enemy was spotted and the ship then towed them into wind as fast as they could.
The pilot had just 58ft of 'runway' to get the plane airborne or it would plummet into the sea with disastrous consequences.
A team of seamen had to hold the plane back while the pilot got the engine up to speed then release the chocks at the right moment.
Incredibly even if the plane made it into the air, the only way the pilot could land again was by crashing into the sea in the hope of being rescued.