May 1938

Volume 7 Number 2  (74 of 88)




This issue of Popular Flying magazine features NO “Biggles” story.  The last “Biggles” story was published in the May 1934 issue



This issue runs from page 57 to page 108 (52 pages)



Inside Front Cover – Advert for The Imperial Airways Armstrong Whitworth ‘Ensign’ – “The Largest Retractable Undercarriage in the World”

– Operated by Lockheed


Page 58 – Contents Page

(The contents page is by an advert for Wills’s Gold Flake cigarettes)



Page 60 – The Eye that Misses Nothing – A striking example of composite photography for which it is difficult to find a title.


Page 61 – The Editor’s Cockpit – W. E. Johns

(Subtitled – Booze and Bunkum – Johns sounds off against accusations that those in the R.A.F. drink too much.  He talks of his experiences in the First World War.  “There was a fair amount of drinking done in the R.F.C. I should be the last one to deny that.  A lot of fellows started the day on a stiff whisky, and by thunder, they needed it.  If they were lucky they ended the day with a dose of the same medicine.  Again, by thunder, they needed it.  I know.  By September, 1918, when the Huns were as thick as midges over a midden on a summer’s evening.  I started the day with a half-bottle of champagne.  We were in the champagne country, and it cost next to nothing, chiefly because there was a chance of the Huns breaking through, in which case the French vintners would have got nix for it.  It got the old arteries moving again.  And don’t anybody who has not done any war flying write to me and say that I was a naughty boy.”)


Page 62 – Perkins’ Pills and Cadman’s Mustard – by “Quaestor”

(I don’t know who “Quaestor” is – whether it is W. E. Johns or not – but this article continues from page 62 where Johns ends his editorial and it runs as if it was part of his editorial.  The subject under discussion is the things that are wrong with Civil Aviation in general and the Department of Civil Aviation in particular)


Page 64 – Foreign Planes in Spain’s War – by “Vigilant”

(“We do not, by the publication of the following notes, associate ourselves with either side in the Spanish War.  The information has come into our hands, so here it is for what it is worth.  Information emanating from either side will receive the same treatment.  As we have said before, we are interested only in the flying angle, and not with politics”)


Page 68 – All Eyes on the Azores – William Courtenay

(“This article discussed the use of the Azores – owned by Portugal – as a trans-atlantic air base for the North Atlantic air route”)


Page 70 – Aerial War on the Mosquito – Major E. B. Brasier-Creagh, M.C.

(“An account of the work undertaken by the Mosquito Patrol in India”)


Page 74 – Flying Wires – Air news items from all points of the compass

(One interesting item is “A pilot of a German military machine who lost his way and landed by mistake in a field near Morsbronn Alsace, was detained by the French authorities.  The machine was confiscated.”)


Page 76 – The Air Force of Czechoslovakia

(“Czechoslovakia has suddenly leapt into the limelight as the result of Herr Hitler’s schemes.  Here are some particulars of her air arm

 – which she may soon need.”)


Page 78 – Wings Over Costa Rica – Douglas Ross

(“Most people who want to see the active volcanoes of Costa Rica have to make the journey on horseback, and arrive back in the Capital saddle-sore and much the worse for wear two days later.  I was lucky and had an aeroplane at my disposal.”)


Page 90 – ‘Planes and Personalities – A Monthly Causerie by “Observer”

(One paragraph has the heading “SPITFIRES FRO SUPERMENT” and talks of the speed of the Supermarine Spitfires.  “A Spitfire may very soon fly from Edinburgh to London at a speed of 500 miles an hour ………… “if the elements are kind”)



Pages 82 and 83 – The Centre Pages – Across the Sahara in a Light Plane – An Interesting Adventure


Page 84 – Under the Windstocking

(“And an Historical Note on an Aerial Exhibition 25 years ago.

A look back at the Berlin Aerial Exhibition of  1912 is tempered by a remark about what people will think in 25 years time of the planes of today.)


Page 86 – Leaves from an Armourer’s Diary – D. B. Knock

(A interesting article quoting from a diary of one of the “other ranks”

including 11/11/18 “The great news by W/T.  It is all over but the shouting.  How I would like to see the fun now at home!”)


Page 104 – Aviation Bookshelf

(Three books are reviewed this month)


Page 108 – The Buyers’ Log


Inside Back Cover – Advert for Greys cigarettes


Back Page – Advert for Lodge – The best plug in the world – “For all car and aircraft engines”


Click here to see a much larger picture of the cover artwork – the artist is uncredited - but presumably - Howard Leigh