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British Industrial History

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James Radley

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James Radley (1884-1959), early aviator

1884 April 4th. Born the son of James Radley, a colliery owner, and his wife Fanny Prescott Radley, at Dunmow Hall, Slaidburn in Yorkshire.

Radley started as a racing driver

1901 Living at 2 Linden Road, Bedford: Fanny P. Radley (age 53 born Middleton, Lancs.), Widow living on own means. With her two children; Honora C. Radley (age 20 born Staidburn); and James Radley (age 17 born Staidburn), Engineer's Pupil. Three servants.[1]

1910 April. Flew eleven circuits covering a distance of sixteen miles in just under twenty-three minutes in a Bleriot. Only been flying for eleven days.[2]

1910 May. Advertisement. James Radley to give a flying exhibition at Bedford Polo Ground with two Bleriot monoplanes..[3]

1910 June 14th. Gained his aviators certificate (No 12)

1910 June Flew his Bleriot XI at the first aviation meeting held in Scotland at Pollokshaws, Glasgow making seven flights.[4]

1910 October. Flew in the United States, winning the cross-country aviation race at Belmont Park in New York. Radley covered 20 miles in 19 minutes and 46 seconds, an American speed record.[5]

1911 Lodging at the George Hotel, Huntingdon: James Radley (age 28 born Slaidburn). Also present were William Moorhouse and Cyril McCatha.[6]

1911 Entered the Daily Mail Circuit of Britain Air Race and was to use an Antoinette monoplane, but he failed to start.

1911 Formed Portholme Aerodrome

1912 July. Won a cross-country balloon race where he achieved a distance of 132 miles from Hurlingham.

1913 Circuit of Britain race: Radley in co-operation with Eric Cecil Gordon England designed and built the Radley-England water-plane to take place in the 1913 race. It was damaged before the race and did not complete, the aircraft was subsequently modified and re-built.

1912 Radley entered a Rolls-Royce Silver Ghost into the 1912 Austrian Alpine Trial and he also competed in 1913 and 1914.

1959 Died at his home at Woodgreen, Hampshire.

See Also


Sources of Information

  1. 1901 Census
  2. Dundee Evening Telegraph - Wednesday 20 April 1910
  3. Bedfordshire Times and Independent - Friday 06 May 1910
  4. Dundee Evening Telegraph - Friday 03 June 1910
  5. Sunderland Daily Echo and Shipping Gazette - Monday 31 October 1910
  6. 1911 Census