BE2 in flight


Replica WW1 aeroplane on show at Southend Library

  • The Sopwith Pup with Claude Ridley's Bentley

  • The Sopwith Pup post restoration


A replica WW1 Sopwith Pup aeroplane, which was restored using a £5,000 grant from Southend Council, was on show at Southend Library as part of Stow Maries Great War Aerodrome’s exciting centenary commemorations.

Stow Maries Great War Aerodrome, near Maldon in Essex, was established in 1916 as the base of the Royal Flying Corps 37 (Home Defence) Squadron, two years after the First World War began. It is now open to the public and is considered unique as no other near-complete World War One aerodrome remains in England.

The restored Sopwith Pup, a plane which would have typically been used by the 37 Squadron, was displayed at The Forum in Southend Library, as part of an exciting exhibition relating to World War One aerodromes in Essex, including Stow Maries Great War Aerodrome, Rochford Aerodrome and Goldhanger Aerodrome.

Ivor Dallinger, Curator at Stow Maries Great War Aerodrome, said: “The Sopwith Pup does not usually leave the aerodrome, so this is a special occasion.

“Without Southend Council’s help the restoration would not have been as advanced. The Sopwith Pup now carries the colours of Captain Claude Ridley DSO, MC, the first commanding officer of B Flight 37 Squadron at Stow Maries Great War Aerodrome and later a flight commander of 61 Squadron at Rochford Aerodrome, now Southend Airport.”
Throughout 2016 Stow Maries Great War Aerodrome will be hosting an informative and educational programme of commemorative activities in its centenary year, including fly-ins and special events to commemorate the role of the brave servicemen and women of 37 (Home Defence) Squadron, Royal Flying Corps, as well as the opening of its brand new exhibition in the spring.


Our latest Tweets