Saturday, March 21, 2009

That Dam Consarn!

Back in April 1912 two aviation pioneers Leslie Allen and Corbett Wilson decided to fly their machines from Hendon to Dublin. This, of course, involved crossing the Irish Sea, something which had never been successfully completed by plane.

The trip ended in tragedy for Allen. He was seen flying over Holyhead but was never heard from again. Wilson landed in Crewe, Almeley in Herefordshire before touching down in the Radnorshire parish of Colva. On enquiring of a local farmer where exactly he was, Wilson was reportedly told "thee bist in my fild, by my reckoning, so be pleased to take thyself and that dam consarn out of it!"

As it happened Wilson spent the night in Colva, taking off for Fishguard the next morning, by which time a crowd of 500 had gathered at Pentwyn to witness the event. From Fishguard Wilson's Bleriot succeeded in reaching Ireland, landing near Enniscorthy, County Wexford. The world was becoming a smaller place. You can read some more about Corbett Wilson in this book review.

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